FB…I’m On Hiatus. 

Pressure.  Facebook has inserted a new kind of pressure into my social media experience.   My family, friends, work associates – well, everyone I interact with – they’re all visiting and mingling in and around my life on a level I embraced wholeheartedly for several years.  But I’m beginning to think a wee bit of distance would be beneficial.  Healthy, even. You see, I realize, that not everyone embraces the same notion of borders, boundaries, ground rules that I apply to my life, my relationships.  That’s okay. But I don’t want to know every thought, every opinion.  Feel free to keep secrets from me.  Withhold any tidbits of your romantic interludes. Please keep the particulars of certain medical procedures on the QT. And you may certainly file your political opinions in the folder labeled ‘not for public dissemination’.  Or ‘think before you verbalize’. When did it become okay to trounce, either physically or verbally, another person because of a difference in opinion about political party or religion, nationality, ethnicity.  Politics brings out the worst in us, it seems.  And when I view our presidential candidates, I think it also may bring out the worst of us.

So, in an effort to protect you, my dear family, friends, and acquaintances, from any inappropriate reaction I might have to your shared communiques, I am deactivating my FB page.  I’m sure this will be a temporary withdrawal of my online presence, a retreat for personal reflection, quiet meditation and evaluation.  Many of you wont even notice my departure..

Once the dust has cleared from what has been and will continue to be an embarrassing presidential election, replete with strident candidates, vapid speeches, and absurd pandering devoid of any element of truth, logic or concern about the American people, the economy, immigration, education, healthcare, childcare, housing, crime, aging, poverty, hunger, climate change, racism/prejudice in all its forms and occurrences…well, then I may re-enter the global living room that FB has become. But, at this moment, I need space. 

Our government, our country, is in need of our prayers and God’s help.  We are all in need of strength, compassion, courage.  So, while you may not hear from me, know that I’m thinking of you. You are special to me and dearly, deeply loved. I’m available for personal chats, calls, emails…and, certainly you can find me here in the blogosphere.  But do exercise caution in all you say, my dears, because it is, as I’ve said on more than one occasion, a dangerous world.  And words have consequences.

And The Word Is…


Nature.  Animals. Babies.  Grandparents.  People who keep moving despite grief and loss. People who love when their situation seems impossible.  Ingenuity. Talent. Persistence. Dedication. I am in awe of these treasures.  They inspire me to keep trying. Keep working. Keep smiling. Keep living.  Keep the faith. 

And The Word Is…


Hollow, used up. Unfulfilled. Devoid of life, joy, hope. Empty cookie jars, empty bank accounts. Vacant houses, vacant positions.  Visit the nearest mall and you’ll encounter vacant expressions, sightless eyes, mindless activity. We sometimes find ourselves without direction, purpose or goals.  There’s a remedy. Introspection, soul searching, meditation. Be still. Watch and listen.   Allow time to pass you instead of just passing time. It’s a dangerous world, my friends and effort is required. Don’t lose your way.  And you might think about taking the hand of the person next to you.


The World Is My Oyster

Today I’m looking for pearls.  Not the fresh water, cultured or Mabe variety.  I’m not that crazy about shellfish but if that’s the only way to get to the pearls, then let’s get to it!

Pearls of wisdom…wouldn’t it be fabulous if you could find them in an oyster.  Some days I’d be willing to dig through some pretty bad trash if I knew I’d find a few pearls.  Ah, well, it’s just not that easy.  Or is it?  When was the last time you spoke to your grandparents, if you’re lucky enough to still have the darlings around?  They’ve forgotten more than we know.

Grandmother (my spouse’s Grandmother) used to tell me about her family coming to this country  (She meant southern Arkansas) from Kentucky in a covered wagon.  They logged, planted, laid railroad ties, raised livestock, made quilts – these were people who knew the meaning of hard work.  They were too tired for mischief at the end of the day.  Grandmother married at 14 and by the time she was 32 she was a widow with 8 children.  In 1950 the opportunities for women were scarce.  Grandmother became a migrant farm worker.  She and her children traveled via pick up truck from Florida to Michigan following crops and harvesting along the way.   She put all 8 through school this way!  When her children were grown she remarried and enjoyed several years with Grandpa Mac.  She bequeathed several pearls of wisdom – work like there’s no tomorrow because there isn’t; handle your responsibilities with determination; life has a way of teaching humility – learn it quickly with grace and humor.  Continue reading “The World Is My Oyster”

It Was A Warm Summer Day

I was five years old, playing in a grassy area under the giant oak tree in the side yard.  Dolls, tea dishes strewn about, June sun shining through the leaves sparkling occasionally across my face.  Just another summer day in my not so long life.  No thought of anything beyond the blade of grass tickling my feet or the mosquito buzzing in my ear found its way into my child mind. I was so completely unaware of the change that was hurtling toward me, so innocent as to life’s mysteries.

My parents – who rarely let me out of their sight – had been away  for a couple of days leaving me in the very capable, soft and over-indulgent arms of Daddy’s sister, Aunt Mary.  She was a fidgety woman, constantly brushing my clothes, patting my hair, and wiping dirt, both real and imaginary, from my face.  Aunt Mary treasured me.  I loved her kind face and her gentle way.  Her doting made me think I was special, an important thread in the fabric of Aunt Mary’s life.  That would be important to me in the years ahead for life as I knew it was about to get a bit crowded.

Aunt Mary sat in a lawn chair, shelling peas, her fingers purple from the effort, her favorite hymn on her lips.

“Sweetie, Momma and Daddy got a surprise fer ye.”  Aunt Mary’s dialect was as thick as cold molasses. My imagination went wild.  “Is it a puppy?  I’ve been wantin a puppy!”  “No, darlin, it ain’t no puppy,” Aunt Mary’s smile made her beautiful.

No amount of begging, whining, pleading, pouting, or breath holding could wrest the secret from her.  I paced the yard, pitched stones into a mud puddle, and peered down the road.  I terrorized every chicken, duck and cat within screaming distance.  The sun was beginning to disappear when I finally heard the unmistakable rumble of Daddy’s blue Ford Coupe.  The screened door banged shut as I raced down the steps into his arms.

“What did you bring me?”  “Where is it?”  “Where’s my puppy?”

Dad pulled me close and hugged me tight to him.  “I didn’t git you no puppy, baby.  Go see what Momma’s got.”

I pulled Momma’s door open wide, about to launch myself at her.  I stopped short, a sudden sense of fear gripping my heart.  There in Momma’s lap, was something very tiny, a shock of long black hair peeked out from the pink blanket.  Suddenly the blanket’s  captive opened big blue eyes.  They looked deep into mine, so serious, so curious, so beautiful.  I was lost in them.  My baby sister.  I was at once her willing slave.

Over 50 years of life’s experiences have slipped through my fingers since that moment and I adore her even more today than I did on that hot June day that seems so recent. We don’t always agree, at times we argue, on rare occasions we get downright angry with one another.  It doesn’t change anything.  I look at her and see the soulful eyes, so serious, so curious, so beautiful.  Thanks, Momma and Daddy.  I don’t think I ever told you what a wonderful gift you brought to me.  I wouldn’t trade her for all the tea in China, all the gold at Fort Knox or for any puppy on the planet.

Happy birthday, Sister, and in the spirit of Jesus Christ and his love for us, this is your birthday blessing.  May you and I have many more healthy happy years for long talks, theological discussion and sharing hopes and dreams; may your husband and children see that you are the woman spoken of in Proverbs 3:15, more precious than rubies.  I pray you will be filled with the peace of God, our great Comforter and may you have some inkling  of how very dear you are to me.








A sad word at times, conjuring images of something which has been torn down, demolished, taken apart, used, misused, abused.  Tragedy occurs, but then, more often than not, the victims, shored up by friends, loved ones and, in our online world, complete strangers, take a step forward.  Then two, four steps…gathering tools, courage, resources along the way.  They search out remnants from the debris, refashion and rearrange them.  A collage evolves.  Time moves in its linear fashion and as it does so, a new structure – or perhaps a new person – emerges.  

A shiny, squeaky clean, surface, now covers the collection of found items gleaned from the remains of what was.   All things are new – sort of.  Those at the center of the rebuilding will tell you they are changed by the experience.  How can they not be?  Whether the impetus for rebuilding was an act of nature such as fire, flood, tornado or some atrocity one person has wreaked upon another, change is inevitable.  We choose how to go forward.  Each day requires strength, determination…we choose or the choices will be made for us.  It’s a dangerous world, my friends.  Lead, follow, or get out of the way.






Understanding – I thought we had one…I’ve been wrong before.

Misunderstanding – I said something, you heard something different.

Perception…it’s your reality

Misperception – frequently caused by believing ourselves to be more important than we actually are

Anger – common reaction to a misunderstanding

Confusion – caused by anger; I don’t like being yelled at because you don’t listen

Argument – an event I’ve been trying to avoid by being understanding.  Guess that’s not going to work.

Resentment – I don’t appreciate  feeling I must defend myself against absurd accusations

Relief – I don’t care that you slammed the door; you’re gone and so is my headache.

Sadness – It doesn’t have to be like this.  Why are some people so quick to take offense?  Why is it so hard to admit there might have been a mistake?  It’s not as though we’re perfect beings so mistakes should be anticipated, right?

Why is ‘I’m sorry‘ so complicated?  It’s in English.  No huge vocabulary words.  Easily diagrammed.  No dictionary required.

Experience – Grow from each one.

Failure – it’s optional.  Don’t try, you won’t fail.  Simple.


The Plan

A 3D piece (sold) depicting, (1) Christ with The Holy Mother.  Imagine how she, a very young girl, cherished her Baby as she looked toward the future.  Did she have any idea of what was before her?  (2) A mirror reflects the reason for Christ’s birth, death and resurrection.  No matter the image reflected, Christ can forgive, comfort and provide peace.  (3) The three crosses remind us that even as He suffered and died, He comforted the thief with, ‘Truly, I say to you, today, you will be with me in Paradise’.  As Christ died for us, we are commanded to love one another.  This commandment is about choice, not emotion.  It’s not about ‘falling in love’, the love we have for our children and other family members; it’s not even about ‘like’…not in an emotional sense.

This is about choice – we can choose to love our neighbors, coworkers, church members, etc.  Take note, there’s no qualifying adjective connected to this choice.  Doesn’t matter whether our neighbor is black, red, Jewish, Muslim, atheist, gay or straight, butcher, baker, candlestick maker, robber, liar, murderer.  We love God’s creation, the person, but we don’t have to love the sin attached to that creation.  People frequently ask why God allows suffering, starvation, illness, poverty and I’m amazed this is laid at God’s door.  God gave us free will.  Think how hard it is to let your own children make decisions you know are harmful, but you have to allow them to make their mistakes.

The human race has been making mistakes for thousands of years.  Our free will combined with greed, anger, prejudice, corruption (insert your adverb/adjective of choice here) is manifested through poverty, hunger, war, famine, disease.  Choice.  It’s all about making a decision.

Today’s a new day.  You can repeat the mistakes of the past or you can choose differently.  Repent means to turn away from.  I want to leave an improved world for my children and grandchildren.  I want to stand before God and be able to say I tried to choose love.  May you have a spiritual Lenten season and may the peace of God be always with you.  It is, after all, a dangerous world.

IMG_3883 (Edited)
The Plan