Saturday, June 30, 2007

All in Due Time

I've heard it said that we make time for what is important to us, and while I have found this to be somewhat true, I am still unable to find enough hours in the day for ALL the things I find important these days. Even after prioritizing my so-called "free" time--searching, scraping for extra hours or minutes alone here and there, I am more often than not, coming up empty-handed. Perhaps I just have too many irons in the fire at the moment.

It seems with work I have been catching up and catching up and not really ever getting ahead. My quota renews itself each pay period. The only way I get ahead with it is to work double one day or a couple of days in order to have two or three in a row. That leaves little time for other pursuits--like writing or reading.

But I did find a wonderful little bookstore over in Union City where you can trade your paperbacks. I came home with four Cornwell books I hadn't read, two or three Ann Rule titles (She writes true crime stories), and 3 Writers' magazines. Now if I can just find time to read them all, catch up on my blogging, and the laundry--the never ending laundry pile, I would be in good shape.

I have also contacted a cousin who has been to Iraq and requested some impressions of the landscapes, people, culture, and what-not over there, all as research for From the Dust of Rose Hill. No, my writing is never far from my mind. It simmers on a back burner, and its aroma beckons me back time and time again. I'm keeping an eye on it, so that it does not boil dry. I have not forgotten. I know your patience with me might be running thin with me. But there is a time for everything. And it will all come together in due time. All in due time.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

God Allows U-Turns

Worship Wednesday has rolled around again, and as always, Sista Cala has been faithful to send us another great message. Thanks sis, I needed this today.

One night while on my way to work, I saw a detour sign pointing toward a ravine instead of a road. I passed it by, then thought of what could happen to motorists who were unfamiliar with the area. There was no traffic at the time, so I backed up, got out of my truck and inspected the sign. As I had suspected, the sign had only one screw instead of two. Without the second fastener the sign had spun 180 degrees around the one. The arrow was pointing in the opposite direction from what was intended.

The sign did not belong to me. I had not placed it there and was unauthorized to remove it. My options: ignore the problem and hope for the best, call the Department of Transportation, or find a screw and fix it myself. The risk of danger was too great to ignore the problem. Reaching a live person at the DOT was doubtful at 10:20pm. So I began the search for a way to patch the sign and make it point in the intended direction.

I am a fix-it type person, so I have all sorts of tools, gadgets, and supplies in my truck. The solution was simple; find a bolt with a matching nut and repair the sign. One thing though, the bolt would have to be small enough to go in the hole but large enough not to pull through it. Fortunately I had one the right size. With screwdriver and pliers in hand, the job was done in a snap. My mind was at rest now, I had done the right thing.

How many times do we see people that are traveling the wrong way? Instead of going along the pathway of holiness they have followed the treacherous highway of sin. They are miserable,discontent, and headed towards Hell. They may eventually make a turn in the right direction provided they can see a sign in good condition pointing in the right direction. Or what about our brothers and sisters in the Lord? Sometimes they veer from the main road and need some assistance.

We are all signs to those we meet in passing. It is our responsibility to keep ourselves in good condition and pointing in the right direction. As members of the body of Christ it is important for us to take the initiative to repair broken signs. Unlike the DOT, God can be reached any time from anywhere. We must pray for our fellow Christian signs as well as for the lost travelers. Rather than pointing out the weaknesses of our fellow signs, we should use our God-given tools and supplies to help mend them.

Doing the right thing will bring more than satisfaction. It will also bring rejoicing and rewards. The following scriptures are but a sampling of those that pertain to showing the Way.

19Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him;
20Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins. James 5:19,20

7I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance. Luke 15:7

1Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.

30The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise. Prov. 11:30

16Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. Matthew 5:16

One message our sign should always convey to others is the one of forgiveness. That's why I like the picture I used for this post.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

An Overdue Update

Hello everyone! I trust your summer is going well and you're just busy enjoying it, as I am. We have been out of town for the weekend. I have my 11-year anniversary coming up the 29th, so hubby and I decided to get away to Nashville this past weekend, since Sista Cala was off work and wanted to spend some time with Chase. We had a great, relaxing weekend. And I so enjoyed sleeping in both days. We went to Harvest Church in Murphreesboro where Bro. Manueal McGregor pastors. It was delightful to meet old friends of my husbands and see how their families have grown.

Bro. McGregor preached on Exodus 1 and 2 and about how Moses' mother, Jochebed's great faith and also of how the Israelites grew in spite of their afflictions. Hearing the story of Moses renewed my conviction that yes, I am on the right track with my first book, FROM PHARAOAH'S HAND. And I am eager to get back to hunt for a publisher.

Lately my husband's spirit has been quickened to write some new songs and get a new CD project underway. Yes, he has a gift for writing music that somehow amidst life's struggles he had let quiety slip by him. But I am glad to see his inspiration has returned and I hope that many good things come out of this renewed spiritual awakening. I will keep you updated on how it's going.

Stop by and let me know how you all are doing. I miss you when you're not here. P. S. I stopped by Diane's and found a site where you can plug your blog in and find out what it's rated. Here's what mine came back: Online Dating

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

God's Gifts

Worship Wednesday is late because I was out of pocket all day. Sista Cala got it to me on time. It's all my fault.

Today I have been thinking about some of the most influential people in my Christian walk. Aside from my mother and grandmother I could name several pastors and teachers. The ones I am talking about are folks that invested in me more than a few minutes on Sundays. People that took the time to get to know me; good traits and faults alike. They were gifts that that continue to serve me even though many of them have gone on to glory.

Scriptures I memorized as a child still come to mind as I mentor and teach today. Biblical principles I learned under their tutelage still guide me on a daily basis. The memory of their approving faces still brings encouragement. As their disciplines still remind me of boundaries that need to be kept. Truly they were gifts to me.

11And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
12For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
13Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ:
14That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
15But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
16From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love. Ephesians 4:11-16 KJV

Remember this post as you enter your place of worship. Take a moment to say thank you for the gifts God has given you. After the service, say thank you to those gifts.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Happy Father's Day!

This is a rerun, but appropriate for the weekend, I think. Happy Father's Day to all the great dads out there!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Bring the Little Children Unto Me

Worship Wednesday brought to you by Sista Cala.Last night I heard the heart warming testimony of a grandmother that was privileged to lead her 6 year old grandson to the Lord. The story goes something like this. His new baby cousin had just been born and he was on his way to see him. He asked his Nana if babies go to heaven when they die. Then he asked if he would go to heaven if he died.

She told him that he was the only one that could answer that question. After some thought, he told her that he would not go to heaven if he died. He wanted to know what he should do so he could go to heaven. After a brief explanation, she led him in a prayer for salvation. His countenance was changed instantly.

When Sunday service rolled around, he was so excited he could barely be contained. Like a racehorse in the starting gate, he fidgeted in the pew. He had been instructed to wait for the hymn of invitation, yet he tried to bolt with the first chord of each song. All the while his family beamed with pride. Soon the invitation was given. Then his public confession of faith was made and he was officially on his way to heaven.

I use the word officially only because that's the way his church sees it. Actually, I believe he was saved when he prayed with his Nana. God does not wait on the sanctions of the grown-ups to save a child, nor on the directives of denomination or church to save anyone. All He asks for is a child-like faith and a heart-felt request to be forgiven.

13Then were there brought unto him little children, that he should put his hands on them, and pray: and the disciples rebuked them.
14But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.
15And he laid his hands on them, and departed thence. Matthew 19:13-15 KJV

It is so important to teach children of Jesus. No time is too early. Don't depend entirely upon the church to lead them. Live the Christian life before them at all times.Be prepared for their questions concerning salvation. What is instilled in them as babes will bring about the faith needed to seek and accept salvation.

And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. IITimothy 3:14-16 KJV

Friday, June 08, 2007

Chewin' and Drinkin'

Needless to say, the last week has been unbelievably stressful. Sometimes your mind plays tricks on you. My sister and I drove to Sonic to get us a cherry limeade and pass a few short minutes before our appointment at the funeral home to make arrangements.

While waiting for our drinks to arrive, my thirst overtook me, and I picked up my cup that had the remains of the sweet tea I had finished off earlier. I was just going to chew on some ice until my limeade came, so I took the lid off. To my surprise, stuck to the inside of the cup was a piece of chewing gum that had been chewed and stuck inside.

"Oh nooo," I moaned.

"What is it?" my sister answered.

"Who would do that?"

"What is it?"

"It's chewing gum. In my cup. And I drank every bit of that tea earlier. Oh gross!"

"That's crazy," she replied.

"I'm going to go by Wendy's and give them a piece of my mind." (Not that I had any left by this time.) "Oh, I'm going to be sick." I had visions of some pimple-faced, greasy haired teenage boy who thought it a hilarious prank to put his chewed gum in my cup. I had visions of some chattering pony-tailed drive-through girl coughing and her gum falling in my cup. And she probaby was carrying that dreaded Rotovirus that makes you have projectile vomiting and spastic diarrhea for days on end.

And then it dawned on my sister. "Wait a minute. I had gum in my mouth when I got in the car. That has to be mine. I don't remember putting it in there, though. Let me smell it. If it's peppermint, it's mine."

We looked at each other in like we were in the twilight zone. She sniffed.

"It's peppermint. I must have put it in there thinking it was an old cup. Sorry. I still don't remember doing it."

"Neither do I. And I was sitting right here. Oh, thank God..." And then burts of hysterical laughter. Amidst the grief. Amidst the stress. Uncontrollable laughter. If people had seen us, they would have had us committed.

And the moral of this story is: Chewin' is better than drinkin', but both are risky to say the least.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Granny's on my mind today--

As I sit here trying to get back into the groove of working and not really wanting to, I am reflecting over the past few days. I am so glad that everything went smoothly. I know that for my grandmother and aunt,(the only surviving child), things are going to get rough in the following weeks. When you pray remember these names, "Granny Lois and Aunt Sissy." Yes, we grandchildren will miss Paw. We will remember him fondly, and we will have our share of burdens in the days to come. But as you know if you've visited here very long, our trials have served to strengthen us considerably. And it's up to us stronger ones to carry the weaker. Granny's been married to Paw nearly 68 years. There's not many women who can match that record. They were an unusual couple that's for sure. And she is lost without him.

My Granny Lois is the one who bought me my first pair of high heels. She had me walk probably a mile across town to meet her at the store on her lunch break to get them. Oh, I thought I was it when I started wearing those heels and makeup. She loves shoes. Remember those shoes they called "Candies," I believe it was? And Jellies? And Yo-Yo-s...if you remember those, then you're as old as I am or older. She introduced all those to us girls.

I always liked to get in her bathroom and ramble through her cosmetics. My granny's Dad was a old-timey Baptist deacon, and he would never let them wear makeup. But as long as I have been alive, my Granny hasn't been in public without it. Up until recently she kept her hair dyed, and seeing her without it has really emphasized how she is getting on in years. As long as I can remember, there's been a big tub of Pond's cold cream on her bathroom counter. And a roll of Rolaids in her pocketbook. Along with who knows what else. If you had an ailment, Granny had a pill for it. I think she believes Nyquil will cure anything. LOL.

Another thing she loves is her jeans. Oh, "Them is the most comfortable things they ever came out with," she would say. That, and her velour tops. Remember those? Well, as far as she's concerned, they will never be out of style. She's like me, cold-natured. So picture my lil her stone washed jeans, long-sleeved velour top, sweater over that...costume broach pinned at the bosom, little white tennis shoes (the kind that wal-mart has carried for years, you know, the soft cotton ones with no arch.) And usually a necklace of some kind on. She either lost or broke her newest glasses, so she's pulled out an old red/brown tortoise shell like horn-rimmed pair to wear. But my, she's precious.

I wish I hadn't been so backward as a child and stayed more with them. I wish I had gotten all of her stories down, and I might just do that on a future visit. She has such funny stories to tell sometimes. I've heard them over and over. She's starting to get them a bit confused, though. And strange things are happening around the house, she says. Things are moved or missing. She can't find things. People are playing pranks on her or prowlers are taking things. Voices awaken her at night, sometimes familiar, sometimes not. It's just a matter of time before we will make those rough decisions yet again. I know that she is experiencing a lot of the same symptoms my father-in-law with Alzheimer's has. Senility must be such a confusing state to be in. One moment in the present, clear as a bell, and the next in the past 50 years back. And all we can do is love them and care for them. And nod and smile as they relive those years once again. Nod and smile. And pray.

Thanks for stopping by and for your prayers and support and indulging me as I share a little bit of my family with you.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

In Loving Memory

Harold Stone Robinson 10/06/1919-06/04/2007

My grandfather passed away yesterday after being critical for about 3 weeks. Pray for our family. Visitation: Tonight 6-9 p.m., funeral 2p.m. tomorrow at Shelton-Hunt Funeral Home, Humboldt, Tennessee.

Until Then--

Embrace eternal life, dear one

For peace is Heaven's gift;

Rest beneath her boughs and wait

For in due time we all will meet--

Where sorrows never darken the day

And praise takes place of pain.

Then shall you drink deeply from the river

Water--holy, pure, and sweet,

And I, with you when my time has come,

Will worship at His feet.

--Cynthia H. Green