Tag Archives: blessings


Rifts often start out small. Sometimes it is just a simple thing that starts the small fissure. Other times it is a sldegehammer that cracks wide the divide between two parts of a whole.

Long ago – two children lifted a sledgehammer, and it slammed down upon the whole earthly garden. The resulting chasm cracked the universe and locked closed the gates on what could have been..

The Creator beheld His creations – separated from Him – shivering on the other side of the rift, and – like the Father He was – He wept for their journeys that would now take place. Jounreys that would lead them through tough and frightful places. There was no bridge. There was no succor. They were on their own.

“In the origin The Word had been existing and That Word had been existing with God and That Word was himself God.” ~Jn 1:1

But from the beginning, Our Father knew – just as all Fathers know – that the sledgehammer could be lifted up at any time, or multiple times, when children have free will. A special WORD that He alone would speak into being. A breath of life was given once again.

A Miraculous Mysterium person. A person that was both Eternal and capable of TheNativitylifting a new sledgehammer. A person who was a Son of God A person who was also a Son of Man. A person Immaculate in his birth to an immaculate mother through an act by an Immaculate Father. Two children united in a Miraculous Mysterium to lift a new sledghammer – one that would be the Alpha strike of Healing the rift and follow it through to to the Omega strike of completion. A Healer who would eventually wipe away the rift completly, for such is the love of a Father for His children.


“And Yeshua said to them, “But what is it you are saying about me as to who I am?” Shimeon answered and he said to him, “You are The Messiah, The Son of THE LIVING GOD.” ~Mk 8:29

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Today, November 7th, I am thankful for the written word and for special people who sense in their souls what others can not.. Thanks, Ruth Bell Graham

Listen, Lord,

a mother’s praying

low and quiet:

listen, please.

Listen what her tearsRuth-1b

are saying,

see her heart

upon its knees;

lift the load

from her bowed shoulders

till she sees

and understands,

You, Who hold

the worlds together,

hold her problems

in Your hands. ~ Ruth Bell Graham


“A land so distant that some never knew it existed.”

rigolettoDon’t you love fairae tales – especially the “happily ever after” endings? They remind us of the theme that we are to imprint in our hearts for the rest of our lives. Painful times – scary times – evil times – all pass. Love – however – triumphs and lives forever. “Restored to his kingdom, Rigoletto took his beautiful bride and left the world of men to dwell happily ever after.” Gotta love fairae tales – especially, fairae tales with beautiful music such as Rigoletto.

sept 1989 at the old brick

sept 1989 at the old brick

Some weekends are just fairae tale type of days strung together. Got to spend alone time with eldest daughter. Nothing special – just a few hours out of our busy lives, but a time shared by just us once again. A time to re-connect. A time to remember watching that tiny baby girl morph through various stages of life into the wife, mother and published doctoral student that she is today. A time to remember how blessed I am to be trusted with such different gifts from Our Father.

Today has a restful, healing day. Finished a book. Took a short nap. Played with the dogs. Watched a couple of fairae tales. The niggles from earlier in the week have turned into a full-fledged cold, but hopefully the happy ending will be watching the niggles ride off to a distant land – one so distant that they can never come back. Now that would truely close the book on this fairae tale weekend.

So today, November 8, 2015, I am thankful for a fairae tale weekend and hopefully – waving goodbye to the cold niggles.


1959 dining roomToday, the ninth of November, I’m thankful that Billy Graham has not gone home yet. With my mom on one side and the dad on the other, black patent leather shoes swinging in time to a tent full of music. white socks decorated by pieces of sawdust, and the hem of my dress twisted around my fingers, I listened, and eventually fell asleep But somewhere in there, I internalize this memory and started an important journey that has never stopped. And – if I can keep my eyes open and my feet on the path, I will find that “…so distant land that some never knew it existed.”

“But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, ear has not heard, and upon the heart of man has not come up that which God has prepared for those who love him.”~1 Cor 2:9

As probably most of you know, in the early days of the church, no one had their own Bible or scrolls. They depended on rabbi/priests to teach them. We all know that the stories of the Bible are much easier to remember than those hard complicated verses that jump in non-linear movements and crazy visions that seem too complicated to try to figure out. Hence – enter the teachers who attempted to educate.

ND2015-coverI read a Saturday Evening Post editorial that quoted David McCullough who said if we want to improve the teaching of history, we should, “Tell stories”. Teachers talk, recite, tell stories, – some even sing – crazy ones like me might add a little goofiness and a horse whinny or two.

Fairae tales are one of the earliest forms of story-telling. Some are traced right back to the WORD. A prince comes to rescue his bride from the great dragon beast. After dispatching the evil one, the couple live in rooms especially designed for them in a beautiful castle….happily ever after. Sounds familiar, right? Check out Isaiah or Revelations.

"Where I Am: Heaven, Eternity, and Our Life Beyond," by Billy Graham. Photo courtesy of Thomas Nelson

“Where I Am: Heaven, Eternity, and Our Life Beyond,” by Billy Graham. Photo courtesy of Thomas Nelson

Anyway, it all comes back to the fact that I am thankful that once – long ago – on a warm summer night, I heard a master story teller who wove music and the WORD into a Light that brightened my path and is still lighting my way when I am tempted to step off the path. His new book is a good one, “Where I Am”.

“I’ve read the last page of the Bible. It’s all going to turn out all right.” Billy Graham

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November 1st and I am thankful that Daylight Savings time is over. Ha – for all you old timers out there – remember when parts of OH had daylight savings time and other parts didn’t? Traveling to Wooster for an eye appointment was very interesting during those days.

I am thankful that in 54 days I get to see my Littlest, and that I don’t have 3 hours of difference between us when I call now.last rose of 2015

I gave thanks as I picked one last, fragrant rose of summer to bring inside.

To a lesser degree, I’m thankful for National Authors Day and National Literatacy Day and (for those who care) National Vegans Day and National Cook for Your Pets Day. Whewwww – gotta be thankful they stuck that little preposition in that last one..

Finally, I am thankful for my girls who love their sticks and hate rainy days that keep us inside (even though they didn’t let me take advantage of the “Fall Back Day” as they got me up at the usual time for their breakfast).

It’s November 1st, guys, and I’m thankful that Our Father hears the deeper prayers of my soul and remembers His promises. “ZAYIN- Remember your word to your Servant, in which I have trusted”~Ps 119:49

Blessings!Be!sirach 6 14


It’s November 2. School today was crazy since kids had not been outside all day and couldn’t go outside because: IT IS RAINY. IT IS MONDAY. “Rainy Days and Mondays Always Get Me Down.”

However – I’m pushing “down” out the door and choose to be UP-lifting and thankful instead.

I’m thankful that the new culvert hubby installed on our new property driveway is working perfectly. Driveway intact and waiting for heavy trucks bring materials for the new house.

I’m thankful for my friends. Friends who have been in my life forever. Friends who have just entered my life. Friends who listen to me when I get excited about learning something new. Friends who get as excited as I do over a new book or a piece of music. Friends that fill me with new knowledge and wisdom that they have gleaned over the years of their journeys. Friends who weep with me. Friends who pray with me and for me. Friends that walk with me.

It’s one of those thanks-giving days – even if it was a double whammy of RAINY and MONDAY!wisdom-in-the-ups-downs-ecclesiastes-610714-51-638


In the quiet of the night I start to shut down my mind. It is not a conscious process, but it is one that takes place all the same. It is a little more difficult tonight as I continue to battle the beginning niggles of a cold. Always a irritating consequence when you work with children who like to hug more than they want to do their homework. Of course, Miss Grandma doesn’t mind it too much – except when the niggles start to rise in the back of my throat.

Tonight the music that woke me up (after a restless night of coughing and sniffling) changes to lullabye mode and my eyes grow heavy. The dogs roll and stretch signaling it is almost time for them to take one more stroll outside. Hubby snores softly from the couch. Sleep is not too far away for me either. I know this ol’ body will be glad to catch up on some sleep, and hopefully – the niggles will be gone tomorrow.

I like this time of night the best. Noise of the day starts to drift into the background while free verse prayers form and swirl in concentric circles. Faces of those battling disease. Faces of those missing their loved ones. Faces of the unspokens. Devotional reflections circle in the middle of them begging more attention, more time, more awe for the One who opens His hand to hold me while I stumble through my day and while my body slumbers once again.

“When times are good, be happy;
but when times are bad, consider this [look]
God has made the one
as well as the other.
Therefore, no one can discover
anything about their future” — Ecclesiastes 7:14

As I look back at the past few hours that we call a day, I try to find God’s wisdom. God in the irritating niggles of a cold. God in the woman who kept talking and changing her order while I waited to order a tall strawberry ‘n creme to cool my throat. God in the silly laughter of my snuggling Grand who curls into my side as we read, ‘just one more story’.
The Hebrew sages are right. God is there. God’s wisdom is speaking. In the aches and pains of a cold. In the delight of a child’s love. In the person in front of me who talked to herself as she considered this and that. In the sweet smell of a rose that I clipped earlier today from a bush I thought had died. In the cricket’s song outside my window. In the noise. In the quiet. In the music. Wholly dependent upon Him, I’m ready to close my eyes and trust my future – good and bad – to finding His blessing in each step. For that, tonight, November 3rd, I am thankful.


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Writer’s Block

writingWriter’s blocks are debilitating, demoralizing and just down-right depressing. Words get written, erased, re-written and erased again.  Sometimes the words don’t come at all, and the computer screen or paper remains blindingly white.  So after a week of Bronchitis – another week of “catch-up” (on all those things I ignored while I was curled in a ball coughing) and finally, a week of trying to get back on a  “normal” schedule, I decided the best thing to write about was the hidden gifts in all of this.

“Blessed is the man who finds wisdom, the man who gains understanding.”  Prov 3:13 

Writing has been my outlet since I was little.  When I was little and upset with my mom and dad, I would write letters and stick them where I knew they would find them (a bathroom magazine/book rack was a favorite spot).  Being the intelligent, loving parents they were, they never openly acknowledged the venting of their youngest child in a head-on confrontation, but they always found indirect ways to let me know that they had, indeed, found these rambling, often emotional, poorly written outbursts.  All the same, they gave credence to these fledgling expressions.  Sometimes it was in the topics that we discussed around the supper table.  Sometimes it was in the songs that writing nikethey sang to me as we said our prayers at night.  And sometimes, it was just that extra special hug or time spent doing things together that let me know they heard.  Needless to say, writing became one of the primary ways for me to communicate with them when topics were too scary to approach in conversation.  That’s why the past couple of weeks have been hard.  Not writing is almost as bad as a tummy ache…maybe worse.  But not being able to write however reminds me that these dry spells can be a gift in disguise.  While gifts may be wrapped in our physical DNA and propensity of traits (mom and dad were both writers of poetry, song lyrics, speeches and long, long letters), it is Our Father’s blessing that enhances those gifts and weaves them into a tight package that blesses those around us.

“All this,” David said, “I have in writing as a result of the LORD’s hand on me, and he enabled me to understand all the details of the plan.”  1 Chron 28:19

This time the gift was one of receiving.  I listened to lots of people talking via blogs, sermons, TED talks, books- even TV shows as I coughed my way back to health (thanks to the blessings science and the discovery of antibiotics). But mostly –  I spent a lot of time in quiet reflection.  It came at the perfect time (which is exactly the way God works in this crazy world), and while I didn’t realize it at the time (since I was coughing way too much for any kind of logical thought), I needed to be slowed down and reminded about the Author of our gifts.  Eventually, it also surfaced to the forefront of my spinning brain that Jewish month of Elul would start soon and in fact – starts yesterday (the 27th of August).  In Jewish tradition, this is the month of reflection – a looking back – a taking stock of the good and bad things/choices that have transpired over the past year.  The shofar echoes across the land as a physical reminder leading His people into the Jewish High Holy Days of Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, and Sukkot.

“Appoint judges and officials for each of your tribes in every town the LORD your God is giving you, and they shall judge the people fairly.”  Deut 16:18  

mouth gateIn Hebrew this last verse is written in the singular tense.  Rabbis believe this is because it is not just written for the nation, but in fact, is written for the individual as well.  It is a reminder that as we reflect upon this past year, we should “appoint a judge” to evaluate our performance and also set “officials” over the gates that need protecting.  Common gates such as our thought processes, mouths, eyes, ears, etc. must be protected so that the next year will be much better than the previous year.  In other words, Our Father is encouraging us to “judge” ourselves and guard the gates to His temple that resides within each and everyone of us.

“I will not enter my house or go to my bed, I will allow no sleep to my eyes or slumber to my eyelids, till I find a place for the Lord, a dwelling for the Mighty One of Jacob.” Ps 132:3-5  

As usual, David – the shepherd, the warrior, the king, the husband, the father, the sinner, the passionate, creative poet – says it best, and I wonder if he wrote it during the month of Elul because it is so reflective.  What better goal could I set for the coming holy days than this?  I [will] find a place for the LORD,  a dwelling for the Mighty One of Jacob…  

Writing-writing-31277215-579-612Nothing is more important than this – NOTHING.