Sunday, June 22, 2014

Come On In!

Nothing lasts forever, and true to form, a trusted piece of of our outdoor decor fell apart this week.
Unfortunately, it was a victim of several decades of snow, ice, 100 degree temperatures and thousands of downpours. For years on end, this sturdy old item has done its duty and kept dirty shoes and boots from tracking through our living room. It wasn't fancy, but it was trustworthy and did its job quite well. But, now it is in pieces.
I am writing about, as you have probably guessed by now, our trusty old black rubber WELCOME mat. We don't remember when we purchased it, but those seven letters have greeted each and every person who has stood at our door for a really long time.
As I think about replacing our mat, I am becoming a bit sad and nostalgic.
Some of the folks who have stood on that mat have passed on. Young parents carrying toddlers have become senior citizens. Children who stood there are long into adulthood and many now have children of their own. Our old mat has WELCOMEd a lot of people.
But, on the bright side, we are going to replace it today. A trip to the big-box, home improvement store this afternoon will do the trick, and by tonight, the pieces of our old mat will be in our trash bin.
Tomorrow, if our shopping trip is successful, we will have a brand new WELCOME mat at our front stoop, ready to greet many more years of visitors

Kind and welcoming Lord. You always have the WELCOME mat there for us. You are always the perfect host. Help us to become family in Your kingdom and earth and forever.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

"Hats Off! Along the street there comes a ruffle of drums..."

Just the other day, I overheard a conversation between two older gentlemen who had just met. They quickly passed through the introduction phase of their conversation and then went on to the next phase, that always seems to follow, among 80 to 90 year-old men.
That next phase, I am quickly learning, almost always begins with the same question, "What did you do in the war?"
For the next 20 minutes or so, these two men talked about where they were stationed, with whom  they served and what their jobs were. They were recalling precise names, dates of battles and specific types of aircraft, from over 65 years ago. I was fascinated and they were enjoying themselves immensely. What a wonderful time they were having as they reminisced and talked about old times.
As a "Boomer", I have known that the "Greatest Generation" has never wanted to discuss their experiences in World War II. I now know that just isn't the case. The truth is, those veterans have never wanted to share their experiences with their wives and children, but they do want to talk about the war to fellow veterans.
It won't be long before the veterans of World War II are no longer with us. I think it is our duty, as the next generation, to make sure they all have the opportunity to share their memories with their fellow service folk.

Great Lord: I am thankful to be an American. I am proud and humbled to know that many of your children have given their lives in service to others. Service takes many forms  and although Peace is what You expect from us, sometimes we must fight for what we believe is right.
Watch over us and help us to make good decisions.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Ditto, I guess!

Have you ever purchased one item and then as time went on, wished that you had purchased more of the same thing? I have and I suspect that you have experienced this very same buyer's remorse, at one time or another.
Take this story for example. It's about my favorite night gown. It's a Vanity Fair night gown. Vanity Fair has been making the same type night gown for years. Maybe you have one. Maybe your great grandma had one. But, the wise among you know exactly the type of night gown I am talking about.
I love my Vanity Fair night gown. It's a perfect fit, it feels great and I love sleeping in it. And, believe it or not, it's 20 years old. Really. One of the great things about Vanity Fair night gowns is ....they never wear out.
In the past twenty years, I have purchased numerous night gowns, but none of those have lasted over a couple of years. My Vanity Fair gown is tried and true. It's my go-to night gown.
(I would like to tell you about my Vanity Fair underpants, they don't wear out either,  butt...pun intended.... :), that's another story!)
So, recently I set about trying to find another Vanity Fair night gown, just like my old faithful favorite.
After several unsuccessful retail forays, I located a local store that sells Vanity Fair Lingerie and PTL, they had "the" same ageless night gown.
I didn't just buy just one night gown, I bought three of the same style, same size, but in different colors, and proceeded to the check-out.
"Now", I told the clerk, "I am set. I will never have to buy another night gown for the rest of my life."
She gave me a puzzled look....then, I smiled a wise and all-knowing smile.

Good God: Sometimes things just seem perfect. Life is beautiful and everything is coming up roses.
I know that You yearn for us to appreciate the Great Times. Why else would we have the bad times?
You are our strength and comfort in time of need. Help us to remember where and from whom the Great Times come. We are your servants.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

....Good and Faithful Servant.

During a recent workday, I had the opportunity to observe a young woman, as she attempted to do a rather tedious cleaning task. I had been asked to observe the worker, not to actually help with the work. (This was a good job for me. Because, as you might guess, I am much better at observing, than I am at actually working.)
The young woman worked up quite a sweat, as she attempted to get the job done. However, it soon became obvious that she lacked the correct tools. So, after she had made several stabs at the project, I explained to her that she needed to stop and go find the proper items to get the job done correctly.
She left and returned an hour or so later with the right tools, and she got right to work.
Voila! Success. Smiles. A job well done and appreciated.

All powerful God; How often do You wonder why we can't get it all right? Are You ever just disgusted with us when we mess up our lives?
You are amazingly patient and unconditional in Your love and forgiveness of Your children.
It is so simple when we use the tools You have given us.
Keep us strong in our Faith. Show us how to love. Keep us ever hopeful.