Wednesday, June 28, 2017

The magnet of unconditional love

I met her when I was first married. She was my husband's aunt and what one might call, a real pistol. She was inquisitive, and honest. Boldly honest.

I remember her driving up to my house, unannounced, knocking at the door, expecting entrance. As an overly shy young wife, I didn't answer. I don't know why I was so afraid, but her boldness put me at arms length.

She and her husband never had any children, but as the "great" aunt, she mothered all of  her nieces and nephews. I can hardly remember a time when she did not light up a room she entered.

I lost my Mom when I was still in my twenties. Not having any siblings, it was a time that left me feeling very much alone. None of  my friends had lost parents. Yet here I was, young and newly married, feeling a deep sense of loss in my life.

Five months after my Mom passed away, this aunt lost her own 91 year old mother. Her loss drew us together like a magnet.  Three years later, when her own husband died, she showed her resilience during her time of deep loss. The bond between us grew even more.

What started as visits and spending time together, grew into a deep loving relationship. She became the "adopted" mother to me, and when my children came along, she became their "adopted" grandmother.  She came to every family event. Never failed to send birthday and anniversary cards. We enjoyed going to lunch or just out for ice cream. Shopping excursions became a fun day. At Christmas, my kids would decorate her whole house. For twenty five years, she was a fixture in our lives.

As her health began to fail, it became necessary to move her into an assisted living facility. My children and I helped her downsize from her home to a little apartment. Then came the day when she could no longer live alone. A caregiver was hired to tend to her needs.Visits became more difficult.

When a stoke finally left her with little strength, it broke my heart to see her struggle. Dementia started creeping in. But she never forgot us. Her eyes would light up and a smile would shine on her face whenever we came to visit.

Through all the years, the one thing that radiated within her, was her unconditional love. It wasn't just with our family, she loved and cared for everyone that came within her radar. She took meals to lonely widows, even when she was a widow herself. She visited anyone who was sick. She was a party girl, and loved being included with family and friends. Everyone loved her as much as she loved them. At times she would tell me she didn't think she was very pretty. But in my eyes, she was beautiful. Her smile alone was like a ray of sunshine.

In all the years we shared together, I only heard her speak once of a person who had hurt her. But she never with held her love.

We don't always seek out close friendships with people older than our peers. But my life has been richer for having experienced this kindred spirit.  I learned so much from her and deeply miss our times together. She will be forever in my heart as an example of sharing unconditional love.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Inscriptions for Inspiration

Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being, and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart.

Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones that you have broken rejoice.

Hide your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities.

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.

Cast me not away from your presence, and take not your Holy Spirit from me.

Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit.

Psalm 51: 6-12

Monday, June 19, 2017

Inscriptions for Inspiration

I bless the Lord who gives me counsel:
in the night also my heart instructs me.

I have set the Lord always before me;
because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.

Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices;
my flesh also dwells secure.

For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol,
or let your holy one see corruption.

You make known to me the path of life;
in your presence there is fullness of joy;
at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Pslam 16:7-11

Monday, June 12, 2017

Inscriptions for Inspiration

"For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s." Romans 14:8

Friday, June 9, 2017

All about boys

 Brothers, Kids, Family, Fun, Childhood

Twenty five years ago, our last child was born. A boy. Ten years younger than our first born girl, and seven than our middle son.

Having two boys was a challenge for me. I grew up without a father, and having no brothers, was totally clueless about the nature of the male species. So when these little boys came into our family, I had no idea what I was in for.
Toddler, Child, Kid, Infant, Playing

Things start our small. Like climbing and making mud pies in the sand box.

But before I knew it, things escalated.  

They go from this...
 Kid, Child, Young, Childhood, Happiness this
As Children, River, Enjoy, Water

Water Fight, Children, Water, Play

My memory serves me when my middle son decided that he would take his Dad's golf clubs and hit a few. His one mean stroke sailed through the air, and went right through my bedroom window. 

Yes, boys. They are a breed of their own. 
Boy, Playing, Leaves, Autumn, Child, Fun
 Fish, River, Boy, Water, Landscape

 Baseball, Runner, Scoring, Sliding

 Swimming, Children, Pool, Boys, Water

But life sure would be dull without them.

pictures courtesy of Pixabay Brothers, Boys, Boy, Play, Children

Monday, June 5, 2017

Inscriptions for Inspiration

In a day of seeking after signs and wonders, when only the spectacular is considered miraculous, we need to be reminded that the greatest thing you and I can do for God is to simply believe on Him.

Ron Dunn