As we laid my mom to rest we gathered in front of this statue of Jesus with young children. The inscription is “For of Such is the Kingdom of Heaven.” We felt like young children once again. Humbled to know that our mom is now in His presence. Thankful to know that our separation is temporary.
This morning I see a father running frantically through the streets looking and asking everyone he comes into contact with if they have seen Jesus. Finally, he is told where he can find Jesus but he will have to travel outside the city gates and up into the hills.
Dad- (Upon seeing Jesus) Jesus! Please come immediately, my daughter has died but if you get there quickly, you can revive her.
(Hurry Jesus, Hurry!)
Jesus starts down the road with the dad and all of his disciples.
(There is a woman approaching. She has been bleeding for 12 years. She is not allowed within the city and has been outcast.)
Woman- (Thinks to herself) If I can sneak up and touch his clothes, I will be healed. No one will even notice. (She touches Jesus clothes.)
Jesus- (Stops) Who touched me?
Dad- Are you nuts? look at the crowd around you. Hurry we need to go!
Woman- Jesus it was me but I didn’t mean to get in the way.
Jesus- (Smiles at the Woman) Daughter, your faith has healed you.
Woman- She is jubilant. (Not only has the bleeding stopped, she is being called daughter by the King of Kings. She has been healed physically and emotionally.)
Dad- Can we please go now!
Jesus- Sure! Sometimes I am a little slow at answering your request. As you see, there are other stops along the way I need to address.
(The pace has slowed but everyone continues to this synagogue leader’s home where there is a circus of hired mourners.)
Jesus- The girl isn’t dead, she is just sleeping.
Mourners- (Laugh and Jeer at Jesus! )
Jesus- (Kicks out the mourners and takes the girls hand.)
Daughter- She opens her eyes and smiles up at her dad and Jesus.
(Two women were given a new start with their families!) Matthew 9
I went for an early morning walk with my neighbor on November 14, 1996. This was always my favorite time of day as we shared or lives with one another. However, this morning would be different. As we turned the corner a block from our home we saw three large black dogs running loose across the street. We started walking slower and quieter hoping that we would not be detected. Suddenly, I was surrounded. Two Rottweiler’s faced me and the third Rottweiler was guarding Flora. Within seconds, one jumped and grabbed my left arm and the other my right arm. As was falling the third dog ran and bit me on my breast. I looked up at Flora and she told me to tuck and protect my face. I squeezed into a ball as one dog shook me violently by my left arm. I heard cars honking and my first thought was, “Someone is getting married and I am dying.” I soon realized that they were trying to scare the dogs away. However, I knew I would not be going home that day because even if I could get up, I would be brought back down. I prayed a simple prayer, “Lord take care of my husband and my children.” I also prayed for Flora because she would not leave my side. Suddenly, I heard a loud thud on the ground and my left arm was free. I rolled over and started to get up. A voice told me to, “Stay down! The dogs are still trying to get you.” I saw a large Rottweiler’s face staring at me through the spokes of a bicycle tire. The police and fire department showed up and blocked off the street to make it safe for emergency personnel to come and treat me. I finally had a chance to look at Frank Nielsen. Frank had been riding his bicycle to work and when he saw the dogs take me down he came to my aid. I told him, “Thanks for saving my life.” Once I was being treated a woman handed Flora a phone from the other side of the fence so she could call her husband Bob. (We didn’t have cell phones back then.) Bob came and took my house keys because my husband was four hundred miles away in training. That morning Bob would be responsible for getting my children out the door and on their way to school. Flora was going to the hospital with me because she had also been bitten while trying to get one of the dogs off of me. As I was being loaded into the ambulance I could see police standing behind barricades with their guns drawn because the dogs were still running loose. Everything seemed so surreal!
Eighteen years have passed and today I am alive and thriving. I want to thank all my friends and family who have stood by me and helped me through the years. Hug your children and hold your families close as we enter the Thanksgiving Holidays.
“Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped in crooked generation.” Then you will shine like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the work of life.”
I read this today after wresting with a tooth ache all night. Do everything without grumbling or arguing! Really God, I would love to give you a piece of my mind. So many times I have argued with God and told him he just doesn’t understand my circumstances.
Jesus you have never felt alone. He was totally abandoned by his friends when he was in the Garden of Gethsemane. First, they fell asleep and then they ran.
I thought I had Jesus one time. Lord, you have never felt guilt because you never did anything wrong. I was reminded that he felt my guilt while dying on the cross.
Grumble, Grumble, Grumble … Lord, I sure wish I could sparkle like a star without all the hard work.
Today is my birthday and I have been asked, “What are you getting for your birthday?” I think back to my childhood. Our birthday treat was usually a homemade cake and the family singing “Happy Birthday” as loudly and as far off key as possible. Sometimes we received one gift. Recently, my pastor gave a message that “Life is like a game of Monopoly, It all goes back in the box.” Currently, I understand that I have more stuff than I will ever need. What truly matters in the world are my friends and family. Relationships don’t go back in the box, they are my gift for all eternity. Thanks for being in my life!
For fun Friday I made an I spy game with my favorite girls today. However, today wasn’t so fun for the adults. I managed to flood the laundry room. The water poured into the garage damaging the ceiling and insulation. The family I work for are the kindest people and didn’t give me a hard time but I still feel bad. http://www.icanteachmychild.com/i-spy/
Here are some of the items hidden in the bottle.
We got a dog from an animal shelter five years ago. He had been there over a month and needed a good home. He is a Terrier Hound mix and was left because he just didn’t play well with other dogs. At first, he had little interest in his adoptive parents. We were told to hand feed him every bite. We did this for a week and he warmed up to us.
Our daughter has a Mastiff Pit bull mix named Apache. Sam and Apace get along like brothers but they have a toxic relationship. They love to box and nip at each other all in good fun. Dawn was going out of town for a few days and needed us to watch her dog. We agreed because that is what parents do.
Our newly married son needed a place to stay for a couple of weeks until his rental home opened up. His wife had two Yorkie’s that she moved into our home as well. We kept the Yorkie’s upstairs while Sam and Apache played in our backyard all day and were crated at night.
My husband joked. “When did we become a kennel?” It was day five and our daughter was due home that evening. Sam and Apache were playing in the backyard while my son was out walking the Yorkie’s. Of course all the dogs went into a barking frenzy. While David controlled his little Yorkie’s and started toward the house he saw Apache lunge and grab Sam’s face. Then the fight began! David put his dogs away and ran to stop the fight. When he returned to the yard both dogs were licking each other in brotherly love but the damage had been done. Sam’s lip had been torn along the jaw with another bite on the ear. Apache’s nose was bloody and his hear had been bit as well. $411 dollars later we have decided that we can no longer be a kennel. After all, Sam needs a home where he can feel safe and loved.
At the rehearsal dinner by new daughter-in-law gave me a pendant, with this inscription; “Thank you for raising the man of my dreams.” This took me back in time to when I was searching for the man I planned to marry.
I met a boy my senior year in high school. I could never please him no matter how hard I tried. When he graduated college we just kissed and said, “Good-bye”.
I took time to think about what I wanted in a man. Mostly, I wanted a man that would accept me for who I am. Is there someone who would love and value me?
Eventually, I was attracted to a young computer engineer at our church. He planned a ladies night out where all the men served the single women dinner. We watched “My Fair Lady” together and then the men cleaned up.
John and I started dating and within a couple of months we were engaged. I thought I knew John when we were married eight months later. I did not even begin to fathom how our lives would turn out.
Within six months we were buying our first home. We had two children within the first five years. When my daughter started kindergarten, I mentioned that I would like to go back to school to get my BA. John’s response floored me. He said, “I think you should, you are one of the smartest women I have ever met.” I had always received average grades and I felt dumb in school because I worked so hard. So my journey back to school began.
Life was moving forward quickly. We sold our first house and moved up to our dream home. I was in my last semester of college when I was in a serious dog attack. We watched as our emergency cash slipped away and I put my education on hold. Still, John remained at my side as we fought the owners of the dogs in court and I got therapy for my left arm. I finally returned to school. It took me nine years but I graduated! Yeah!
John and I always worked together in raising our children. We had some really tough bumps along the road but perhaps that is another story. When our son graduated high school we chose to move to Georgia. John was interested in retiring and California was just too expensive. Plus, we wanted our children to be able to afford homes of their own.
I couldn’t get over how beautiful and green it is in Georgia. My family gave me a camera for Mother’s Day in 2012. I started taking pictures of a Great Blue Heron that would visit a pond in my backyard. I wrote a simple story for the girls I babysit. John told me that he had never seen anything like my story and he supported me in getting it published.
I just want to say that it has never been a dull moment. We have learned a lot together. I am proud of my husband for being a wonderful dad and example to our children. Last year we celebrated thirty years of marriage. I have to admit that I really didn’t know John on the day that we were married. However, I know him now and he truly is the man of my dreams. Here’s to you my love.