Sunday, May 14, 2017

Happy Mother's Day

Thinking of my mom today, and wishing I was with her. So many memories and so much to be thankful for. Most of all, I want to thank my mom for her unconditional love.

(Mom 2013)
"Love is patient and kind." 


(Me 4 years)
Mom, thank-you for your constant patience and kindness. I don't ever remember a time where you became impatient with me and it resulting in you being unkind. The memory that comes to mind is one from elementary school. I walked home for lunch as we often did. I told you I forgot it was my day to share a science experiment with the class. As a mom myself, I'm afraid I would have been a little more than irritated and not shown much patience or kindness. But I never sensed any of that from you. You took the time to help me think of something I could do. You helped me learn the properties and reactions of talcum powder and water and we experimented with other substances until we came up with an interesting experiment.  

(Me and Mom 1980)
"Love is not jealous or boastful or proud  or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out.  Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance."

It would take to long to post memories of all the attributes of unconditional love, but Mom you embody them all and the greatest gift you ever gave me was showing me God's amazing grace and love in everything you did. So thankful to God that He gave me to you.
I love you Mom.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Health

Boring title, I know. Years ago my sister warned me that as we aged, I was not allowed to talk about health problems, aches and pains, etc. Neither of us was allowed, as she said it was a sure sign of being "old." My grandma passed away at 80. She never complained about her numerous ailments. She had a younger sister who did. She told me once (or more than once) that if her sister, Rose, would quit complaining her life would be so much better. "I love my sister, but hearing about her aches and pains constantly is depressing. Makes me want to not spend time with her." Grandma was a wise woman. So is my sister.

Having said that, I'm not about to complain....at least not about my health. What I will tell you is for some time we have not been able to afford health insurance. Imagine that. We finally gave in and applied for the laughable, I mean affordable care act insurance. I don't know how anyone could call it affordable.

One of my prescriptions, I have not been taking regularly as it is too expensive. I was happy to have it refilled now that we have insurance. At the pharmacy, I handed the clerk my new insurance card. After inputing my information into his computer, he apologized. "I'm sorry, Ma'am, but your insurance doesn't cover this medication." He turned to the pharmicist to ask if there was a generic alternative. Turns out there is not. That's unfortunate. I will have to work for 4 days a month to pay for this medication. Guess I will go back to taking as little as possible of it, to stretch it out and hope it works enough.

Sigh.

Guess I shouldn't complain about health issues or health insurance. Thanks Grandma and Carolyn.

Truthfully,
Joanne

"Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus." 1 Thes. 5:18

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Dropped

Recently a friend inquired whether or not I felt like God had dropped me. She wasn't accusing, insinuating, or even believing this. She merely wanted to know if that is how I felt. Tears filled my eyes, as it so frequently happens these days.

I reassured my friend that I did NOT feel like God had dropped me. Two days prior, a memory popped into my mind. I cried that day too, at least a few times.

Twenty-five years ago, I took my youngest child to church for the first time. She was two weeks old. After service, I picked her up from the nursery, then went to gather the other four from their various classrooms. Somehow, as I was stepping down the concrete steps to the gym, I lost my footing. It's amazing how quickly things go through your mind in a moment of distress. As I tumbled, I wondered if my dress would end up over my head with everyone watching. Not really. I thought of that later. The only thought I had was protecting my newborn baby and not letting go of her. I couldn't catch myself or break my fall. Both arms remained wrapped around this precious child.

I quickly gathered myself and picked the two of us up off the floor. Amazingly,  were both unhurt, except for a bit of my pride. A week or so later, I was praying. I was struggling with feeling unimportant, unloved, and neglected. In His still small voice the Lord asked me, "have you ever dropped one of your little ones?" Instantly I remembered falling down the stairs, and yet, I did not drop my little one. He told me He too would never drop one of His little ones and I was one of His own. He brought to mind a verse in scripture,

"Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you. See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are ever before me."


A week before my friend asked me if I felt God dropped me, I was at a low point. The Lord graciously dropped this reminder into my heart. I had forgotten about both the incident and His promise. What a blessed reassurance to know that He feels the same loving card towards me as I do about my own. I can trust that He is always looking out for me and will never let me go.

Truthfully,
Joanne






"And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord."

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Little Things

Sometimes we complain about how difficult life is or let the little things get us down. A few minutes ago, as I was putting on my pajamas , I looked down. I was wearing my last clean pair of socks. I had just removed my last clean shirt. Ugh! What will I wear tomorrow? I have an appointment.

Normally, I'd run downstairs and throw in a load of laundry. These days it's not that easy. Earlier I ran a couple of loads of laundry, as I usually do. My daughter and her husband rent our basement.To give them privacy and space, I try not to do laundry at night. It's enough that I'm down there most days doing a load or two or three.

As I was rummaging through my closet to see if I could find a spare shirt, I was reminded of a time when I didn't own a washing machine. I was 19 years old and a brand new mommy. I would fill a pillowcase with dirty laundry. Lugging the bag over one shoulder, and baby in the other arm, I'd walk two blocks to the laundromat. I purchased individual packets of soap from the dispensing machines. It was fine that I couldn't afford to buy a big bottle of detergent. I would never have been able to carry it.

Thinking back to this time, I realize I have nothing to complain about as far as laundry goes. Sure, it might be inconvenient to intrude on my daughter and her family, but I do own a washer and dryer, and multiple bottles of detergent and fabric softener. I don't have to drag my dirty laundry down the street and pay for every single load to wash and dry.  Thankful for the little things today.

Truthfully,
Joanne


"And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus." Phil. 4:19

Sunday, April 09, 2017

New Day

So happy. I finished well. I actually miss being in class Go figure. 
In other news, have you ever had a day where you thought to yourself, "when was the last time I had a good cry?" That used to be me. My story now is, "I cannot for the life of me remember a day when I didn't dissolve into tears at least once." For someone who does not cry easily or frequently, I can't seem to stop the flow. 
I started this post last week. I never finished it. I don't intend to finish it now. Instead, I direct you to my daughter's blog. From there you can follow her family's journey and read about Jonathan. 

https://wholeheartmiracle.wordpress.com/2017/04/08/the-road-ahead/



Truthfully,
Joanne

You are the God of miracles and wonders! You still demonstrate your awesome power. Ps. 77:14

Thursday, April 06, 2017

A Psalm

 I cry to the Lord; I call and call to him. Oh, that he would listen.  I am in deep trouble and I need his help so much. All night long I pray, lifting my hands to heaven, pleading. There can be no joy for me until he acts.  I think of God and moan, overwhelmed with longing for his help. I cannot sleep until you act. I am too distressed even to pray!
I keep thinking of the good old days of the past, long since ended. Then my nights were filled with joyous songs. I search my soul and meditate upon the difference now.  Has the Lord rejected me forever? Will he never again be favorable? Is his loving-kindness gone forever? Has his promise failed?  Has he forgotten to be kind to one so undeserving? Has he slammed the door in anger on his love?  And I said: This is my fate, that the blessings of God have changed to hate.  I recall the many miracles he did for me so long ago. Those wonderful deeds are constantly in my thoughts. I cannot stop thinking about them.
(Ps. 77:1-12)
Thankfully, it doesn't end there.
O God, your ways are holy. Where is there any other as mighty as you?  You are the God of miracles and wonders! You still demonstrate your awesome power.
Waiting on the Lord for His answers and miracles.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Finish Well

I hope to be back next week. I'd like to post regularly.  I want to finish well. This Sunday I have a State Exam. I want to finish well. Must study. So much going on, so many changes, so much to do. I want to finish well.



Truthfully,
Joanne

His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord." (Matt. 25:21)