Tag Archives: honor

Memorial Day 2015

memorial day aToday, I finally finished my own memorial to my parents and hubby’s parents. Plants.  Plaques given at their funerals by loved ones.  Bricks.  I can now sit in my garden, study the WORD, listen to the windchimes or God’s creations, and remember those who gave me the best of themselves.

Graveyards are fine. They serve the community as a rallying point to honor those who have sacrificed for our country. It is a place to erect monuments to those who have gone before. A place for speeches, parades and memories. Humans tend to need those things. Communities tend to need those things. I just seem to need something a little closer to home. A place surrounded – not by other monuments – but by God, and the garden where He placed me.

“Celebrate the Festival of Harvest with the firstfruits of the crops you sow in your field.” — Exodus 23:16

memorial day fThe more I learn about Jewish holidays and traditions, the more I fall in love with the beginnings of my faith. This is not only Memorial Day, it is also the end of Shavuot and also Pentecost. The more I read Jewish traditions and history, the more I believe that nothing is coincidence in God’s timing. Invisible lines intersect over and over in an unending circle of love. Giving us endless clues to His fascinating character.

Shavuot had its beginning as a “first fruits” harvest – the offering of the first perfect,memorial day h unblemished fruits of the harvest being given back to the Father. Later it became the date that Moshe recieved the Torah – the first, perfect unblemished written fruit – from the Father to His children. (Interesting thought always arises in the back of my mind that perhaps this was Rabbi Yeshua’s true birthdate. God seems to like patterns, and I just have to wonder.) Pentecost – the perfect, unblemished gift of the Holy Spirit – from the Father to His children. Memorial Day (although not celebrated anymore on its original date) – a day to remember those who gave the ultimate sacrifice – past and present – to return home to Our Father.

May 24 aYesterday, the Grands and family came over for brunch. We laid on the chaise lounge that my father made long ago and identified the shapes of clouds as they drifted overhead – a pig, a dragon, an eagle… Their barefeet walked the path of the cross made of old, imperfect bricks from a long ago Loudonville street. They carefully moved the little elves from place to place in front of the stain glass window that my big brother gave to me also long ago.

Holy-days are special. It is one reason, hubby and I decided long ago to always have our pigroasts on the Sunday before Memorial Day. A day for family. A day to remember. A day to honor sacrifices made long before we were born and those still being made today by those far away. Hope you have a blessed holy-day and remember to honor the first fruits just as He remembers to honor you.grain_offering

Mother’s Day 2014

I’ve taken the last few weeks off. Avoided any reading of serious books that challenged my thought process and basically, just trolled FB a lot, played a few games, read a few fluff books, played with the dogs, giggled and sang with the grands, and prayed. But the prodding has begun again. God is like that. He challenges, pushes, prods and encourages, but He never demands. He knew I needed a few weeks to process and rest, but the prodding is more pointed the past couple days as I looked at the wonder of His oceans and marveled at the intricacies of the tiniest of His creatures. I guess Mother’s Day is a good a place as any to start pushing close up 1951myself forward again. After all, Mama Mick was a great pusher. She pushed me into this world and pushed me everyday there after. Needless to say, it was not always the trait that I most admired about her. In fact – for many years, she was not my most favorite person. It was only when I became a wife and mother myself that I began to understand her a little bit more and love her as much as I had always loved my dad.

“Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be prolonged in the land which the LORD your God gives you” (Exodus 20:12)

My Grandma McCaskey was named Ruth. My mom was named Ruth. Is it any wonder that one of the first Bible stories my mom told me as she mom and Grandma Mac 1919tucked me into bed was about Ruth the Moabitess? According to Jewish traditions, this story is often used for gentiles as they seek to enter the Jewish religion. Like Ruth, they leave their region that they know so well, traditions passed down from one generation to another and friends/families that have encircled them for years to become a member of something that is built on some abstracts called faith and love.

 

“Where you go, I will go, and where you lodge, I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God, my God” (Ruth 1:16).

Parents are our first physical example of God’s love for us. As often happens in this fallen world, some parents don’t do a very good job at this, but for the most part, we grow up happy, content and ready to raise our own families the same way. We draw a circle around us and smile. =)

george and helen 1971Today I heard from my four children and quite a few of my “kids” that I have “mothered” throughout the years. I am “blessed more than I deserve” to quote Dave Ramsey. And…I am thankful that I had several “moms” in my life that helped me become the mom I am – Grandma Mac, Mama Mick, Helen Kaufman, Aunts on all sides of the family, and all those fabulous Loudonville Teacher/Moms who continually pushed me as if I was one of their own.

It is easy to SAY, “I love you” —- it is much harder to put all that love into action and push it forward into the world that surrounds us. “…Please let me go to the field and glean among the ears of grain after one in whose sight I may find favor…’” Ruth 2:2 That is the true meaning of Mother’s Day…honoring those who have come before us by giving birth, pushing the new generation out and into the world, picking up those who have fallen, so that the world might continue to understand the love of Our Father for His children. Love – Mercy – Grace –