Friday, November 4


I do not know who to give credit to for this collage.
 It was taken from Photobucket
This old post I read this morning brought back other memories.Sharing with you again. Perhaps it will bring memories that you might want to share.

Thanksgiving will soon be upon us. Walking this morning in our mobile home park, I met young people on bicycles. An unusual sight in our retirement village. And  as I walked, I began to remember Thanksgiving’s past. My mind became a collage of memories much like the collection we often create with our photos on our computers. Memory overlapping memory.      

 My Aunt Opal , who lived with us, and I sitting around the kitchen table breaking up old bread for stuffing as my mother prepared the feast of the day. And then the memory of twin cousins coming later to entertain us with the double trouble antics of two little boys. That blends into the reflection of my own kitchen as my daughter and I work together to set the table and get ready for our aunts and uncles. I can see my children so clearly as they stomp in from the cold and snow to warm themselves with snacks and perhaps a pinch of pie dough or a slice of turkey. My memory collage is overshadowed by my more recent memories of our adult children and our young grandchildren running in and out the back door of our farm home. I can hear their grandpa shouting, “Shut that door.” as they run to the cookie jar or the toy box. Our daughter and her family arriving in a flurry of coats and shouts and hugs of greetings. The sweet smell of children and turkey blending in my mind  bring a lump to my throat, but a prayer of thanks to my heart. And as recent as last night I remember our  four year old great-granddaughter (via Facetime on our cell phone) proudly show us her sister of four months  and then dash to plug in the Christmas tree they have just decorated so that we might see the lights.
But over all my collage I see the love of God  framing all my memories.

Our God has blessed my life and my family in so many ways. Some I remember and others I don’t, but always He has been there to protect us, guide us, and most of all love us.  And for all of that I thank Him this Thanksgiving season.

Monday, September 26


     I often think of patience as a kindly virtue of moms and little old ladies. Reading tonight, I have discovered that patience in the bible is often translated as perseverance.
     A new, but welcome thought for me because perseverance sounds much stronger as a word than patience. People who persevere are fighters not meek, waiting little people with no fight to them. Those who have the endurance  to run the race, fight the fight, finish the course...these are those who my gut level feeling patience is not always a virtue even though I have been taught differently by my“persevering, patient” mother.
    " Persevering, patient" now becomes redundant if what I have learned in my reading has any validity. I think I would like to be known as a woman who persevered maybe even more than a woman who was patient. Of course it is all just a "play with words" idea,and I do so like to play with words. Patience or perseverance...,either way it is a fruit of the spirit that I need to cultivate more each day. Galatians 5:22

So how do you feel about this thought?  Do you view patience as perseverance?

Monday, August 29


Today is Monday and as usual on Monday, I begin to think about what I want to accomplish this week. I pray each morning before I get out of bed that God will give me opportunities to serve; however, even when He does, I don't always recognize them. I wrote this devotion one morning after we had been to church. I have returned to it many times as a reminder to myself to do God' s work when He offers it. I may not get a second opportunity to serve that person. My prayer for all who read this is that you would seize the opportunity to serve the first time you meet it and not pass it by for another time.

Read Matthew 25:34-40 “Anyone who knows the good he ought to do and doesn’t do it, sins.” (James 1:4 NIV)
     On our way to church this morning we turn the corner , and  I notice her surrounded by what appears to be all her worldly possessions. The gentle Florida breeze ruffles her gray hair and she moves her wheelchair to the edge of the sidewalk as a pedestrian passes. “Oh my, how sad!” I murmur as we drive on to our regular place of worship. I sing; I pray. I participate in the Communion and read God’s word. But her face intrudes into my personal worship. I resolve that on the way home, we will stop and offer her some comfort and help.
      We drive our same path home. She is gone. My opportunity to do something is gone. I have been so busy “playing Christian” that I have bypassed someone who needed love—God’s love. Jesus’ said “whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine you did for me” (Matt: 25:40) I had not “done” anything for the “least” of God’s children. “Anyone who knows the good he ought to do and doesn’t do it, sins.”(James 1:4) Today I had sinned again.
PRAYER: O Lord forgive me. Help me to practice the true religion of giving love and aid to those less fortunate than I. Amen
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY When God creates an opportunity we must act. It may not return.

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Monday, August 8


Recently doctors diagnosed my foot pain as stress fracture.
For those who are not familiar with the term (and I wasn’t) they described it as two small bones in my foot much like two wires that continue to move back and forth until they break because of the stress placed upon them. Each time after this diagnosis I wore an ugly black boot until these bones healed. Each doctor was too kind to mention “old” bones. J

I am walking for exercise again, but today I began with a mile.  Not my usual three miles, but it is a beginning and I will continue with that for a week or two, evaluate my body’s response and move on to more distance.  Perhaps I will soon be back to my normal distance.

As I didn’t recognize my fracture until it began to be painful, we sometimes don’t recognize how our mental and spiritual well-being is stressing until we break. We skip our Bible reading and morning devotion because we have a committee meeting at the church. Our designated Prayer time is lost as it is time to drive the children to Youth group. We want to spend more personal time with God but we have so many things we need to accomplish in each day.
None of this is detrimental for us, but it can be unfavorable to our spiritual life which then affects our physical and mental well-being. When we fall apart and so many of us do, it is then we need to put on the “black boot” to slow down and ease the stress of our lives.

I write this morning as one who has been there. Take time to be holy (defined as set apart).  Stress can be controlled. God tells us “Be still and know”.  I will continue to walk, but perhaps my body is telling me to slow down as God may also be telling me to slow down.


Do you have stress fractures?  Physically?  Mentally?  Spiritually?

Friday, July 29


As I walked this morning my mind is filled
 with so many different thoughts.
I have been going back over a conversation that I was a part of recently.  And yes, I was a part of it, not an innocent by stander, but a part of the group. And in retrospect,I have decided to be more careful about my participation in such conversations.  Was it harmful?  I don't think so, but was it necessary?  Probably not.
How do you feel about gossip?  Harmless?  Destructive? Not a problem? The subject is on my heart this morning. Society gives it many labels-chit-chat, rumor, conversation, prayer-wait Prayer?  Really? How could prayer be destructive?
As His people, we need to examine our hearts as we make prayer requests. God knows the details of the situation. Vivid description of the problem as the request is made is not usually necessary. An explicit detail made public does little for a marital or family situation. Just like the game we played as children, the words change as they are passed from one person to the next. A simple request for prayer is sufficient.  The key here being the word “simple.”  
Elaborate prayer requests can be gossip in disguise… can you be trusted? The author of Proverbs tells his reader that a gossip betrays a confidence. (Proverbs 11:13, 20:19,) Betraying a friend’s confidence by labeling it a prayer request becomes gossip. Our public prayer requests need to be clear and simple. God will understand.
My prayer today is that I might not betray my friends or my God. Won't you join me?

Wednesday, October 14


This post is taken from my book JUST WALKING, but felt it was appropriate for today. I just went out to mailbox and walked into one of these lovely, sticky webs. Reminded me of this devotion and thought probably few people remember it...don't intend to do repeats but for today I will share this.
I do have books for sale or you can purchase them on line. (Good sales pitch there :-)

    As I step outside my front door, I walk into a spider web.  It stretches across my face like a mask at Halloween.  I detest the sticky, creepy feeling.  I reach to wipe it from my skin.  In the early morning fog, I see spider webs are everywhere-on the grass, on the fence, even in the braches of the trees.  The droplets of dew highlight each one, and then the sun slides through the fog and illuminates each masterpiece! I stop in awe and gaze at the webs that had been such a bother to me a few moments before.  I see the promises of God.
     I walk in the beauty of God's world as the sun makes rainbows in the spider webs.  The intricate, thin thread spun into each individual, lacy pattern reminds me that I am God's unique creation. His beloved child!  He knows the number of hairs on my head and promises me he will take care of me if I will let the light of his Son shine through the fog of my life. Just as the sun coming through the fog turned spider webs into works of beautiful, shimmering, woven lace, so can I be beautiful to God.
     Too often I let the fog of worry and the fatigue of everyday concerns engulf me.  A I let the entanglement with the spider web obliterate the beauty around me, I also let the concerns of life keep me from the beauty God has prepared for my life as his child.  I could be the witness he intends for me to be here on earth if I would let the light of his love create rainbows in  my daily life.  Clinging to God, my life could be like the sun reflecting through the damp spider webs clinging to the fence-a thing of beauty.
     The problems in my life become so like the spider webs across my face-clinging and sticking to me as I, by myself, try to wipe them away. Jesus told us, "Do not worry about your life. Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they...and why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow.  They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that bot even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these"(Matthew 6:25-29)
    And then he tells us what I so often forget, "But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well." Matthew 6:33)

Do enjoy this season as we see what God has given us to walk through. 

Saturday, May 9


MOTHER'S DAY 2015  My annual post for Mother's Day.Just a re-post of an article I wrote about my mother.  It still shows her personality and we all still miss her.

A couple of years ago some magazine had a contest to write about my mother-my hero. I submitted this article. It was not chosen as a published article,but it seemed fitting to use as a Mother's Day Tribute. My mother died December 28,2008 and at this point I still have not been able to write about her as she deserves, but this gives you a picture of a woman who lived a full life. She was a follower of Jesus and her life showed that. I found this in her Bible and thought it is worth sharing.


I have to live with myself and so

I don't want to stand with the setting sun

And hate myself for the things I've done

I want to go with my head erect.

I want to deserve all men's respect;

For here in the struggle for fame and self

I want to be able to like myself.

I don't want to look at myself and know

That I'm bluster and bluff and empty show:

I never can hide myself from me

I see what others may never see:

I know what others may never know.

I never can fool myself and so,

Whatever happens I want to be

Self-respecting and Conscience free.

Author unknown
I want to comment on this by saying that she certainly fulfilled this desire.

MY MOTHER-MY HERO I open the door of her Florida mobile home, and she calls out, “I’m in here.” “Here” is the computer chair in her living room where I often find her when I stop to visit. This morning my ninety year old mother is on Instant Message with her grandson (my son) in Montana . As I stand waiting, he sends a message. “Show Grandma where to get pictures. I want her to see my hunting trip and my sunrise picture.” He never once doubts that she will be able to save them. He sends them, but she really doesn’t need me. She has already figured it out.

It is this attitude that makes her a hero to all her family, children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. New things are exciting to her. Her positive attitude throughout her life has been an example to all those who know her.

As a child, I remember our home was always full of my father’s brothers and sisters and even their children. Sometimes all of eight of them; sometimes just one or two at a time. I can never remember living in a home without several extra people that my mother was “mothering.” Some stayed for a week; some for a month; some until they graduated from school or married. As long as they needed her, they were made welcome. And never did I hear her complain about extra laundry, extra meals, or extra people.

When my son was young, she was his favorite fishing partner. Once, the two of them traipsed off to a local fishing tournament and returned home with a simple plastic trophy. In my mother’s eyes, it was an Olympic Gold Medal, and Mitch felt as important as any super athlete. And at fifty, he still wants to share his triumphs and “trophies” with her. Grandma Betty still makes him feel like a star.

She found strength to attend basketball games for a great-grandson even when she physically needed help to sit on the bleachers, but it is important that she support her family. Besides she loves the game of basketball. Really her favorite sport is baseball and the Chicago Cubs rate high on her list of television viewing; however, if Tiger is on she switches channels.

When my young daughter needed a new dress, a dance costume or a cheerleading skirt, my mother was the seamstress. “Grandma Betty will do it” became a standard phrase in our family. And when wedding time arrived for each of these grandchildren, Grandma Betty sewed bridesmaids’ dresses and made the flower arrangements. After my children married, their spouses quickly realized that “Grandma Betty” is special. Neither of our in-law children had grandmothers when they married into our family, so she is Grandma to both of them.

Recently she flew alone from Florida to Illinois to attend her great-grandson’s wedding. “I have never seen such a wedding; I’m so glad I came.” Not one word of complaint, only joyful and positive comments as she watched the bride and groom ride from the church on four-wheelers and dance these “new-fangled” dances at the reception.

She always shares her talents. Numerous young women learned to sew while she was the leader of their 4-H club. Many children in her rural neighborhood though now adults still refer to “Grandma Betty” in a very personal way. And still, at the age of ninety, she teaches an oil painting class to her peers, takes china painting lessons, is treasurer of her computer club and manages to be active in the organizations in her retirement park. Each Christmas her grandchildren and great-grandchildren receive hand-painted china ornaments from Grandma Betty. The wedding couple received a personalized hand-painted china plate for a wedding present signed in gold-“Grandma Betty.”

Her artistic talent is well-known, but she is better known for her positive attitude and her strong will to do what is right. I often tell her she is “no fun at all to gossip with.” She refuses to listen to anything unkind about anyone. Her words are the old adage, “If you can’t say anything nice, then don’t say anything at all.” “But mother,” I will say, “this is the truth.” No matter. She shrugs her shoulders (which is her signal that the conversation is over.) “If it isn’t nice we don’t need to talk about it.” That ends the conversation. I have not known her to waver from this position in all my seventy years as her daughter.

Anyone who has lived ninety years has known sadness, and mother is no exception. Sickness and the death of her spouse, her son, a sister-in-law she had raised from her teen years, friends and siblings remain as poignant memories. Throughout these times her example is to do what needs to be done with quiet patience, courage and a strong faith in God. Grief is a private part of life and seldom does she succumb to “feeling sorry” for herself.

Each day she has Bible study, writes her diary entry, plans her breakfast and then she intends to have something to do each day. Staying busy, learning new things, keeping up with sports teams and local news, encouraging her family via the internet and her new cell phone and remembering the birthdays and anniversaries with cards she creates on her computer fill her days. I write with tongue-in-cheek that she does manage to find time for Bingo games with friends in her Florida environment.

Although I am a published author and have written many praises about many people, I still have not found the words to describe this strong, Christian woman who is such an example of the Proverbs 31 woman... my friend, my mother, my Hero.