Do you know the legend of the Cherokee Indian youth's rite of Passage? His father takes him into the forest, blindfolds him and leaves him alone. He is required to sit on a stump the whole night and not remove the blindfold until the rays of the morning sun shine through it. He cannot cry out for help to anyone. Once he survives the night, he is a MAN. He cannot tell the other boys of this experience, because each lad must come into manhood on his own. The boy is naturally terrified. He can hear all kinds of noises. Wild beasts must surely be all around him. Maybe even some human might do him harm. The wind blew the grass and earth, and shook his stump, but he sat stoically, never removing the blindfold. It would be the only way he could become a man! Finally, after a horrific night the sun appeared and he removed his blindfold. It was then that he discovered his father sitting on the stump next to him. He had been at watch the entire night, protecting his son from harm. We, too, are never alone. Even when we don't know it, God is watching over us, sitting on the stump beside us. When trouble comes, all we have to do is reach out to Him.

Let's be more aware of all the choices, situations, twists and turns that brought us to this place right here and now. They May Be Miracles.

Friday, April 23, 2010

In His Own Words

My dad used to like to call us on the phone and say "hello," maybe a couple of other niceties, and then quickly hand the phone off to Mom so that she could speak with us.  There was always a method to his "madness" - he wanted us to have a close relationship with Mom and would make sure that he was the one to call us so that he could hear our voices too.  Sometimes he would call us on purpose when he knew we were gone or not available just so he could sing a message on our voice-mail, "...I just called - to say - I love you - I just called - to say I care - I just called - to say - I love you - and I mean it from the bottom of my heart."  This started happening mostly when we all had cell phones...including him.  Always a fan of toys (an engineer) he loved to play with remotes and phones and dvd players and anything that had buttons and lights.

Before cell phones, and before his Guillain Barre in 2002 (which he survived but it really messed up his body and mind and eyes - miraculously by 2003 one would have thought he was back to normal though if they didn't really know him well before) - before all of these things - he used to send us letters.  Long letters.  His letters were about things that concerned him...always about mankind, our faith, God, and our salvation.  I'm not sure what I did with most of his letters - they were sent to me while I was in college and much of that time is a blur.  However, I did find one of his letters in a photo album the other day.  I thought I'd post it here today.  I'm sure he would have blogged had the Guillain Barre not ruined him - probably since my mom was a great secretary and typist he would have dictated his blogs to her and had her type them...I can actually picture that more...LOL!!  But he didn't know anything about blogs...just letters.  So here's his official, one and only blog entry (unless I find other letters somewhere someday):

Well, there you go, Pop.  I love you.  I'm thinking you had a hand in me finding this would have loved to blog!!!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Do be do be dobedobedo...

Have you ever been a store...walking along...mowing your a stadium...wherever,
and you see someone (or a group of people) looking up?  And feel like you have to look up to see what they are looking at.  And then, you notice that everyone walking by is looking up to see what everyone is looking at.  Has that ever happened to you?  Do you have the urge to look up right now just because you see a picture of me looking up??  You know, my little guy when he was about 12 months old for a few months in there at least, was famous for looking up and pointing up at things ALL THE TIME!!  He figured out that people would always look up and ask him what he was looking at and it became a game for him!  We found it quite humorous because anytime we were in a restaurant or just out and about and a stranger would come over to say "hi" to him (he's quite sociable and draws people in) he would point and look up and make them look up too!!

How about....

Oh...does that make you tired or what???  Don't you just feel like yaaaaaaaaaaaaaawning????  Who can't help but yawn when you see someone else yawn?  It's sooooo  CONTAGIOUS!!!!

You know, the other thing that never fails for me?  It's when someone smiles at me!  I HAVE to smile back!!  Here's a smile for you:

Now, if all of these "non-verbals" are so contagious and we can't help but subconciously follow the example of the people who started it...let's consider the things we are leading people into...the things we do and and the way we live...the things that our children and friends either admire about us - or seem to copy whether they are good or bad.  I learned a long time ago (as I'm sure you did too) that the, "Do as I say and not as I do" theory is a big farce!  No one cares about what you say when they can compare it to what you do!!  In bloggy land most people only have the opportunity to learn about you from the things you write, or "say" -- but in real life -- it's much different!  What are your children, grandchildren, other family, friends, or acquaintances learning from you?

Just a friendly reminder that people are watching.  Ignore this if you are notoriously paranoid (take your meds and repeat after me, "No one is one is one is watching..."). 

If I ever needed proof of this all I'd have to do is listen to my oldest daughter talk to her younger siblings!  Holy Moses!!  I always feel like I'm listening to a tape recording when she shows them how to do something, or when she "reprimends" them for doing something wrong!  Have you ever watched your kid or grandkids when they were playing "house" and listened to they way they "played" mom or dad?  Yikes!!! 

You know Ghandi's famous quote, "Be the change you wish to see in the world."  All it means is that you need to be and do the things that you want to see others being and doing!! 

My good friend, Kris, is someone I really admire because she's so generous (I know lots of generous people, but I'm going to name Kris b/c she tends to be extremely generous)!   At times when she's caught up with bills and financially in a good place she can't help but give wonderful gifts to people around her...friends and family.  When things are a little tight she gives her time and presence to people.  She just loves to give.  She loves to love.  I see her example in all her generous ways.  NEVER ONCE has she ever said to anyone that this was the proper way to live.  NEVER ONCE has she tried to convince others that they should do the same thing.  I think many people want to be like her because they appreciate all that she does and is!!   When people are so generous with me I always hope that I can "pay it forward" to someone else.  I know how good it feels to receive - I want to be able to do the same for others!!

Have a fabulous weekend and put a big smile on your face.  If you can't think of anything to smile about...go out somewhere and LOOK UP... watch as everyone else looks to see what's so interesting, then SMILE and walk away!!!

Friday, April 9, 2010

I Can See Clearly Now...

I went to have my eye exam earlier this week.  I haven't gone to the eye doctor in a good 4 years - it's just that my prescription hasn't changed in many years so I didn't really see a need...haha. 

So one of the first things they needed for me to do was to take out my contact lenses.  After that a couple of tests were done, then I needed to sit in the exam room and wait for the doctor.  As I sat in the exam room with everything "foggy" and "blurry" I became extremely aware of how much I despise not being able to see clearly.  I mean, there is usually less than 60 seconds a day that I can't see clearly and it is the time between when I take my contacts out and put my glasses on, or when I take my glasses off and put my contacts in.  I have shared on here before my little secret about sleeping with my glasses on...I just don't like getting up at night and not being able to see the time on the clock...or not seeing which child is standing at my bedside...or any of the various things I need to see at night.  Yes, I could put the glasses on my bedside table, but unless you have trouble seeing you may not understand the discomfort in not being able to see when you open your eyes. 

So I sat in the exam room waiting for the doctor and I could only see in blurred vision for a time (really not liking that experience).  I began to think about thousands of years ago and how people probably just had to struggle with poor vision...they didn't have much help with this issue.  I suppose people get use to what they have to get use to.  I also thought about people in very poor countries who may not have access to good eye care - and I began to thank God for the ministry of those missionaries and doctors who help people in those countries.  I said a prayer of thanks to God that he's helped people over the years to develop great ways for us to see clearly.

As I sat there and said that prayer of thanks, the words "ways for us to see clearly," rang in my brain.  I began to think about how God has given us so many ways, opportunities, people, means, tools, books, HIMSELF...every possible thing on earth to help us see more clearly ... spiritually speaking.  He continues on a daily basis to send people or words or events our way to show us HIS LOVE, HIS GRACE, HIS WISDOM, and HIS POWER.  How is it that our prescriptions can be so off is it that with all of HIS PERFECTNESS we can not see Him clearly sometimes?  I guess we tend to "take our glasses off" and "sit them on the bedside stand" - then we can only see in blurred vision through all the fogginess of the world, the media, the politics, the hate, the sadness and sorrow we've encounterred.

Let's remember to ask God each day to help us see Him clearly.  Then, put our glasses on and focus on the perfect vision of His Love and guidance for us in our lives.

Monday, April 5, 2010

The Miracle I Need

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that we had gone to Pigeon Forge and had seen a show called "The Miracle" at "The Miracle Theater."  There were many times throughout the show that I was overcome, overwhelmed, amazed, and in wonder.  My mother-in-law ordered the soundtrack to the show and brought it to me yesterday to share...I was reminded instantly of the powerful - sometimes very real performance.  Maybe some of you have experienced moments in your life where it was very difficult for you to share exactly what you were feeling and thinking (I have another blog that I haven't been able to write yet because of this same sentiment) - well, I'll do my best to tell you this much:  I sat in that theater watching, no, involved within, this show and was so overwhelmed with the feeling that I was witnessing THE TRUTH...the truth that I try not to focus on daily because it's all too real and too much to fathom.  I try to live the best life I can and give praise and honor to Jesus...but sometimes it's just too much to try to think about eternity and what it all means.  I sat in this theater in tears many times just so aware of the truth being poured into and encompassing my soul.  These are the only meager words I can use to explain the magnitude of "The Miracle."

I sit here and write a blog titled "May Be Miracles;" I can't not take the opportunity to highlight this amazing song from the show.  Please take a moment and click on the link below to watch one song from "The Miracle" called "The Miracle I Need."  (Taken out of context of course so not nearly as powerful as seeing the whole show...but still...worth a watch).

Peace to all who read here.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Fogiven and Loved - Our Easter Joy...

I started really hearing this song in September after my dad died.   I really had only heard the final 5 lines of the song...over and over and over again...I kept feeling like it was my dad singing those lines to me.   (For those who have read my blog for a while you know that at first I felt responsible for his death and it took some time for me to come to the realization that God is in control, not me).  As time passed I started hearing those words - the same 5 lines - from God - they are an AMAZING 5 lines to meditate and pray with.  Then, more recently, I payed attention to the entire song.  Although there are many, many, many wonderful Easter songs, this one has come to hold a special place in my heart.  I still feel like my dad is singing it to me (he had such a wonderful singing voice)...but even more importantly it is a song about OUR EASTER JOY...OUR EASTER HOPE...the blessings of JESUS'S RESURRECTION!

Jimmy Needham - Forgiven and Loved

Tell me I’m forgiven and loved

‘Cause I hear it from the street corner priests

On how God is love and how man can be clean

But my joy has been on holiday

And my peace has almost passed away

Tell me I’m forgiven and free

O I tried and tried to rectify my hopeless situation

But I bought the lie I still have work to do

Now I’m working nine to five like I can earn my own salvation

But there is no condemnation in You

O whisper to me now that it’s for real

‘Cause in the silence of these walls righteousness lost its appeal

Dirty deeds have done me in

O but that can’t stop the faithful friend

Giving mercy once again as You heal

Here it is I’m feeling it

O I tried and tried to rectify my hopeless situation

But I bought the lie I still have work to do

Now I’m working nine to five like I can earn my own salvation

But there is no condemnation in You

O He died, He died to rectify my hopeless situation

And His blood commands my guilt to leave

Now on Calvary I stand

Empty pockets, open hands

O there is no condemnation for me

O I tried and tried to rectify my hopeless situation

But I bought the lie I still have work to do

Now I’m working nine to five like I can earn my own salvation

But there is no condemnation in You

Child, you’re forgiven and loved

Child, you’re forgiven and loved

Child, you’re forgiven

And child, you are loved

Child, you’re forgiven and loved

Friday, April 2, 2010

A Special 20/20 (Friday, April 2, 2010)

Just had to mention to anyone who stops by to peak at my blog tonight that 20/20 is airing a program about "May Be Miracles" - NO...NOT MY goodness I only have a few (very nice, and awesome) followers!!  A show about miracles...possible miracles...power of prayer...I'm watching it now as I type...sorry if you miss the message...hope you got to see the show.  Hopefully they'll have it on-line and I'll be able to make a link to it at some point.