Friday, December 23, 2016

Refreshing Weariness

Last night I received a text message; “Ma, my flight is coming in tomorrow at 9:48.” I gulped in disbelief. I wasn’t done preparing for her coming. Why, she wasn’t supposed to arrive for two more days! I could hardly believe my text.

Then an additional text arrived; “Hey, we’re stopping over in Albuquerque for the night, we’re about 8 hours out, see you tomorrow evening.” Both of these texts conveyed the same idea to me: “You’ve got another long night, Virginia. What you thought you could get done in the morning, more leisurely, must be completed tonight, because you’ll need to leave early in the morning to meet that flight on time.

I was beside myself with joy, and praying for another burst of energy! Not just one, but two of my three daughters were converging upon my home on the same day! Hallelujah! Yet, woe is me! Just when I thought I had timed it precisely, then bang! The plans were changed. I also thought about the second coming of Christ, where we are urged to “…be ye also ready, for in such an hour as ye think not, the Son of Man cometh.” Matthew 24:44

These two daughters had not been together in my home for over two years, when the eldest one was married. Now here they were, together again with me for the holidays, I was tickled pink to be so honored. I thought about my third daughter; she’s more of a loner, meaning when she visits, she seems to prefer doing it alone with just her family. I think it is because I dote over my girls and she would prefer having it all to herself and not sharing. (These are just my thoughts, not fact.)

For the last two weeks, I have been diligently shopping and preparing for these ladies. Because we are all vegan, food preparation can be exhaustive and time consuming. Therefore, as carefully as possible, I began making and freezing food, being cautious to remember that one is allergic to anything coconut and the other to anything chocolate. Hence, I prepared homemade breakfast patties, a plant based protein loaf, especial healthy biscuits with flax, cheese sauce for those distinctive dishes, mock tofu chicken, banana nut bread and a “no chocolate”, chocolate silk pie. I wanted to have as much food prepared ahead of time as possible, so that our time spent together could be used in other ways. I still had to prepare zucchini walnut patties, with extra onions for the eldest girl, and sweet potato pie for my son-in-law; he had put in a special request.

It was extremely exhausting, especially having to keep up with my other daily chores, my husband who was recovering from surgery and preparing for a speaking engagement in another city.  However, God is good and He sustains us during our most stressful times.

I have learned that it doesn’t really matter how much painstaking time and energy you have to exert for incoming guests, as long as it is being done for those whom you love, or even for those who would be grateful for the privilege of being in your presence is a sweet reward. It is a ‘refreshing weariness’ when you see the joy and exhilarated bliss expressed by them.

Although, I could stand a deep tissue massage, right about now, the warm embrace by my baby at the airport, and the anticipation of another by my eldest, in a few short hours is an awesome substitute. Happy Holidays everybody, and Merry Christmas to those who would like to return to the old days! I pray that your days are filled with as much "refreshing weariness"as mine.  LOL


Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Remembering Others This Season

Now that we have finally finished analyzing “My Death Poem”, let’s turn to those things, which are more festive and hopefully more uplifting.  However, before I go there, a couple of Scriptures from Ecclesiastes 7:2; and 7:4, come to my mind, which state:

“It is better to go to the house of mourning, than to go to the house of feasting: for that is the end of all men; and the living will lay it to his heart.”

“The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning; but the heart of fools is in the house of mirth.”                            

Those are sobering thoughts, aren’t they? Let us by all means take them to heart and not overdo it during these days of feasting. 

I have learned that although the holiday times are filled with much genuine enjoyment, with families coming together and friends spending time with each other (even though it is not truly the real birth date of Christ); yet, for many in these most blessed of times, they too often forget about others who have no one – literally!

So many, forget about people who have no family or close friends, during this time of year, with which to celebrate and are left alone. Some do not take it well and end up being depressed. Others, like me have learned to let things roll off their back.

I remember the first year that I was left in the state of OK alone. Sure, I had met some people, who seemingly were my friends. Several who had set their feet under my table and eaten heartedly, on many occasions. However, when Christmas came around, not one person invited me to their home to spend the holiday. Now, had I called someone and invited myself over, they would not have refused me, but that is not the same as being thought about. Since I truly do enjoy my own company and enjoy moments without other people, I continued doing the same things that I did every day, and was fine; but I did find that odd, especially among Christian people.

Hopefully, during this season, you will intentionally put forth some effort to include a single person (whether never married, divorced or widowed), an elderly, disabled or even a homeless person to spend some time with you and your “in crowd”. It could very well prevent a suicide, or at the least, ward off depression for some.

I’m not patting myself on the back, but it is a practice that my family has engaged in for years and years. During those formative years of my children, when some disenfranchised person wasn’t coming to our home, we went to them and tried to make their time, which would have been spent alone, a little brighter for a while.  It brought us as much joy as it did to them.

Therefore, while you are planning for all of the rest of your family, please remember to include a “forgotten member of God’s family”.  After all, it is supposed to be His birthday we’re celebrating. I’m sure that He would want everyone to have a plate, or at least a piece of desert. LOL

Monday, December 19, 2016

Decision Time

As a female, I’ve had to listen to the complaints of men discussing their wives, girlfriends, mothers and sisters’ inability to make up their minds, when they go shopping. They go from rack to rack, from store to store, from dressing room to dressing room trying to find just the right dress or outfit. To men, it seems as if  they will never  make a decision.

Oh, and don’t get them started about how indecisive we are when we want them to move furniture around in the house! If we accept what they say, we would have to conjure up two men walking from one side of a room to the other side carrying a heavy couch, waiting for some female to tell them where to set it.

On the other hand, men can be equally, if not more hesitant about decision making than women; especially when it comes to matters of the heart and settling down. Many relationships have broken up over a male’s inability to decide to marry. Many females have had to patiently wait to hear those seemingly magical words, “Will you marry me?”

When we look at the last line in the poem, we see a male figure, anxiously waiting, looking for some clear decision; hoping for a positive response to His pursuit. Let’s read it:

Line 23: He is here, now waiting, seeking for you – please let your answer be – “I do”. 

John, the Revelator, describes Jesus, as the one standing at the door knocking; asking for entry inside and promising an intimate and lasting relationship to whomever will open the door Revelation 3:20.  For you see, the latchet is not on the outside, but on the inside of the door.

This scripture verse is a depiction of the human heart or mind. Jesus presents you with His promises of joy, peace, eternal life, in exchange for the yielding of your heart and mind to His will. It is a spiritual proposal of marriage. He decided that He wanted you for His “Bride”, when He yielded His life on Calvary for you. He didn’t want you to ‘perish’, but to have everlasting life.

Additionally, He wanted to make you an heir to His father’s kingdom. When you read John 1:12, you find that immediately upon submission, upon acceptance of His proposal, you are granted the authority and privilege of becoming a son or daughter of God, thus an heir to the throne with Jesus Christ. Isn’t that awesome!

Throughout the poem we have discussed vital truths about mortality, the state of the dead, the second coming of Christ, the destruction of the wicked and His desire to take you home with Him, when He comes. The opportunities to understand and accept these things have been offered to you over and over. The acceptance of these truths is an opening of the door and allowing Him to have leadership in your life.  Remember, the latchet to the door of your heart is on the inside. In the poem you are urged to please say, “I do.” When you make that decision, you will receive a peace like no other, and joy untold.

I’ve learned that there aren’t too many good men out there in the world, and when one of His caliber asks for your hand, you will do well to give it to Him. It is the very best decision you will ever make, for this life and the life to come.

First posted to the Internet 12/19/2016
More: My Death Poem

All Scriptures are taken from the KJV – King James Version Bible

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