Friday, July 16, 2010


I read an article today about parenthood that I found to be very insightful for moms, especially "stay at home" moms. SAH moms are rare in 2010, and it breaks my heart that women are being schooled to believe that their value can only be found in a career outside the home. Education is a wonderful thing, a necessity that prepares you for a productive life, but when it comes time to start a family I firmly believe that a young child needs mom to be available 24/7, as they say. Certainly mom needs breaks from her routines, every day, and periodically with her mate. But the article said it this way, "Being a mom is not who I am, it's what I do." Exactly. When little Johnny is grown and ready to leave home, it can then be time for mom to begin to explore her own dreams. But while he's growing, she belongs at home. It's her job, and it shouldn't be part time, shared with young college aged girls at the day care center, or even Mrs. Smith down the street. They need mom.

The fly in that ointment is the single mom who is the sole bread winner in the family. She has no options unless she can make her money from home, which is ideal, but hardly the norm. It is happening more and more, though, and I would like to see more of it for the family's sake.

I guess I am very dogmatic on this subject, among others, but at a time in my life when I am called "Grammy" I have lived and learned many things. Most of these I learned the hard way, tough lessons that I wish someone had taught me before I made the wrong choices. But the best, and just about the only way is to learn by experience. That's one thing I have plenty of, experience. My mother tried to tell me many things those nineteen years I lived in her house, but I only learned most of them by experience, thinking "why didn't I listen to her?"

I'll step down now from my platform to talk about what I really want to write about. Who am I? I'm "Dear" or "Babydoll" to my husband. I'm "Mom" or "Mother" (ick) or even sometimes "Mommy" to my grown children. I'm "Grammy" to my wonderful, and perfect, grandchildren. I'm "best friend" to a couple, at least that's what I call them. I'm "friend" to many, and I'm aquainted with literally hundreds of people. So, with all those titles, how do I narrow it down to who I really am? Am I all those things? How can I be all those things at one time? Is that who I am, or is it just what I do?

When my young teen, Wesley, sees me what does he say to himself? He identifies me immediately in his mind, "Grammy". To Wesley, "Grammy" is who I am. But when I am with Wesley for any length of time, it is what I do. I do the actions that a Grammy does. When John or Jay sees me it registers right away, "Mom". To them "Mom" is who I am. But on an every day basis, with them living so far away that I seldom see them, it's not what I do anymore. It was when they were home and growing up, but they're adults now, and I no longer do the things a mom does for young children. So, it has become my identity, but no longer my job. My job as a mother of grown children becomes a supporter, a counselor, a friend, and most of all to love them unconditionally. And if you think that last one is easy, then you must be young and not yet a parent. That could be the hardest job of all. But it's a requirement, it's a must. There are no options on that one.

It's all very confusing, isn't it? And I could stop writing and thinking now, but we would continue on in our lives living with that confusing dilema, bouncing back and forth between titles wondering just who the heck am I? This is where the real answer comes and settles the question firmly and permanently. All those titles that I mentioned are only temporary, only while we inhabit this earth, only while I'm living this life where I was placed so purposefully and perfectly. I am a child of God. I belong to Him. I am permanently, securely, eternally and lovingly His. That title will never change. I am, and I always will be, "His". When I said "Yes" to my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, I received a title that will be with me forever. And that, my darlings, is really who I am.

So, moms and grandmas and factory workers and lawyers and doctors and garbage collectors, you can call yourself what you like, you can go by titles and names and work your way up to the senator or the president of the company. But when it comes down to who you really are, the only title that matters, the only real question is, are you "His"?

Monday, July 12, 2010


I just got home yesterday from Adrian, Georgia, having attended five days of campmeeting. Speaking there were Dr. Gary Haines, Dr. Jack Eyestone, and Dr. Bill McCumber. It was a wonderful time, and I hope to share some memories of it with you. I learned and I worshipped and I grew in the Lord. Praise His name!

But first I want to share with you that I made a new friend this week. Her name is Gloria. I just met her, I don't know her last name, I don't know exactly where she lives in Georgia, and I know little about her, but she is my new friend and will be for life, even if I never see her again.

The first night we were at the camp we attended the evening service. It was a great service led by Gary Haines, and at the end of the meeting we were singing praises to God, giving Him glory, and closing out the service. Dr. Haines asked, "Are you thankful to God for what He has done in your life?", and we continued in song. A little lady in front of me immediately shot her hands up into the air and finished the song that way. She didn't flinch, she didn't hesitate, those arms stayed straight up. Oh, what a blessing to see someone be so thankful to God, to love Him and worship Him. There was no doubt about the gratitude this woman has for her Lord and Savior.

A tear welled up in my eye, then another, and I was so filled with joy for her, but more, I was filled with a deep respect and with strong empathy for her. You see, her hands, which you could tell had been delicate and beautiful a one time were now knotted by many years of rheumatoid arthritis. The knuckles on her hands and fingers had what looked like huge marbles under the skin. Her fingers were twisted and curved, going different directions at the joints. Yet her hands reached high, she was praising God with no reservations of what those around her might think of the appearance of her hands. I doubt that she even thought about it. I think her only thoughts at that moment were on Christ, how thankful she was to call Him Lord, how much she loved Him, and how much she wanted Him to know of her love.

The next day I saw her standing in the foyer waiting for her husband who was accompanying her. She turned and saw me waiting for my friend. We were both hesitant, but soon she stepped over to where I was standing, and with her right hand, gnarled, twisted, knotted with continual pain, she reached out to me and with the sweetest smile said, "Hi. My name is Gloria." I introduced myself and we spoke for a few minutes. Then I told her that I felt I needed to tell her something, and I asked her to please forgive me if I were to embarrass her. I explained how blessed I had been by the praise of thankfulness she had given the night before, and how, knowing of the pain she must suffer in her hands, I was blessed beyond words. She smiled and thanked me informing me that she has been this way since the age of thirty. That, yes, there was pain, but she had learned to adapt to the pain and the limitations of her weaknesses and infirmities. She wasn't embarrassed, she was pleased that something from her had been a blessing. She was thankful that I had told her. We hugged, new friends, sharing with one another the love that we share for our Lord.

The next morning I saw her cross over to the church. "Good morning, Miss Gloria!" I called. "Good morning, Miss Shirley!" she returned. Two new friends passing, but already old friends because of Christ. Eternal friends. I hope to meet her next year at campmeeting. But if I don't I know that I will spend eternity getting to know her in another place.

I told a friend about Gloria this morning, and my friend said, "Gloria. What an appropriate name she has!" I hadn't thought of it, but she's right. Gloria!

Monday, July 5, 2010


Research shows me that the CDC reports over 1,700,000 abortions occurred during the 1990's, and that 10% of known abortion clinics did not report their count. You do the math, I don't need to. The first number is enough to make me stagger in my tracks. The good news was that the number of abortions was decreasing, a fact that in itself, makes me incredulous. I would imagine the number is decreasing due to the new methods of birth control that are effective even after intercourse, and that are not considered by their promoters as abortion. This is a little mind-game trick they use to convince themselves that it's OK; it's not killing a life. Or perhaps, more to the point, a trick to convince the general public and, therefore, increasing their revenue. Whatever their reasoning, the fact still remains that well over 2,000,000 ( say it out loud, two million) abortions are being done every year just in this country alone.

People all over these United States celebrated a wonderful day yesterday. They sang songs, they raised our beautiful flag. They partied and lit exciting firework displays and honored the military living and dead. They gathered in cemeteries and played haunting bugle tributes to those who paid the highest price for our country to enjoy the freedoms we so cherish. Past Presidents and noble citizens were remembered and honored as true patriots and brave in their efforts to create a new world of freedom from tyranny and dominant rule by an English Crown. What a glorious day it was when the new United States of America declared itself separate and free! No record of the number of deaths during this period of rebellion and revolution was found, but we know that many lost their lives, surely in the thousands.

I also noted yesterday that the celebrations included the memory of the 2,995 victims in the World Trade Center, Pentagon, and Pennsylvania plane crash that occurred on September 11, 2001. The fact of these lost lives have been honored with monuments, plaques, statues, books, movies, and on and on, all in an effort to memorialize a tragic day in our history. They will never be forgotten, nor should they be. Again, a high price to pay. Hopefully the result of their deaths was to cause us to unite against a dispicable enemy of our great country.

Oh, how we unite when we can celebrate a common and popular cause! It is correct to do so. It is admirable to remember and be thankful for what we have that others have given so much to preserve. I am thankful. I remember. But I also feel great indignation for more that 2,000,000 lives that are not ever remembered, never celebrated, never given a minute's thought. In fact, to do so in this country would be a very unpopular thing to do, and would cause many to be ridiculed and labeled fanatical and even insane.

Where did we stop recognizing that every life has the right to progress? When did we stop taking responsibility for our choices and decisions when it meant that it would be an inconvenience or perhaps even an imperfect life that is the result? We have always been self-centered fools, but when did we decide that we had the right to kill just because we want to, and just because we can't see what we're killing? Why is it legal to kill one life and not another? Who decided that life was our decision and not the life Creator's? Do we honestly believe that a sovereign God will look the other way when His creation is destroyed just because we don't want it? Oh, the arrogance of a people to thumb their nose at the Almighty Master Creator and then ask Him fervently to bless them, to bless their country!

We have monuments for thousands of soldiers. We have monuments for many patriots and Presidents. We have monuments for thousands of victims of 9/11. Where is the monument and memory and regret for the on-going millions of lives that are taken because we can't take responsibility for our actions? We are the fools when we believe God will bless us.