Old Ladies Get to Sit in Rocking Chairs and Sing Hymns

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Old ladies get to sit in rocking chairs and sing hymns. I just figured that out. I can almost hear some readers asking, “Why would you think that?” My answer: Because I’m sitting here right now in the early morning, rocking contentedly and singing one of my favorite hymns:

“Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine.
Oh what a foretaste of glory divine.
Heir of salvation, purchase of God.
Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood.”

It’s one of my favorite ways to start my day — this rocking and singing and reading God’s Word. I have some of my best chats with the Father in this old rocking chair. And a few days ago it suddenly hit me that I was doing exactly what other women of God have done for generations — particularly in their senior years.

I remember vividly staying overnight with my grandparents on my dad’s side of the family and waking every morning to the sound of my grandmother Daisy singing hyms quietly as she sat rocking in the living room. The bed where I slept was positioned so that I could see far enough into the living room to see her sitting there with a cup of coffee and enjoying that quiet time wiht the songs about the  Lord on her lips.

But it was my great-grandmother on my mon’s side of the family who made the greatest impression on me. He name was Rosie, and she was a little woman, but strong and sturdy inside and out. She was a strong Spirit-filled Christian. She prayed in tongues, twirled and danced before the Lord in church services and generally lived her life as something of a fanatic for Jesus. She and her husband farmed, but even after she became a widow, she planed her own huge garden every year, tilled it, harvested it, and walked down hot, dusty country roads to take the bounty to other families.

She was also a no-nonsense person with great common sense. Grandma Rosie never sat waiting for her cup of coffee to get cool enough to drink. She simply poured some into her saucer so it cooled instantly, and she slurped it from that saucer.

She really believed what she read in God’s Word. She trusted the Lord for good health all her life and never even saw a doctor until she broke her arm when she was in her nineties.

Grandma Rosie had a rocking chair as well. A place where she rested and prayed and worshiped the Lord in her own heart. And I’ve often thought she must have spent at least a few hours sitting in that chair praying for her children and grandchildren.

The most important thing to me about her rocking chair is that I now sit in it every single day. It isn’t just a family heirloom to me. It means so much more. I know for sure that the generations of believers who have gone before us have prayed for us and opened doors to God’s involvement in our lives in more ways than we will ever know until we meet those people in Heaven. Their faithfulness in times of struggle and their prayers of faith on our behalf have helped forge who we are and what we’ve accomplished.

Every time I sit in this rocker, I think of my Grandma Rosie, and my heart overflows with gratitude for her and her life. But even more, my heart overflows with gratitude and worship to the Lord for all He’s done for me — and all He’s still doing.

This quiet time in my rocking hair with the Word is unique.The Lord draws close to me — or perhaps I should say I draw close to Him, for He’s always as close as I’ll allow Him to be. But I’m very aware of His closeness as I sit here meditating on His Word and the words of faith that flow with the melody of the hymns I sing.

Am I an “old lady”? I don’t feel like one at all. I’m only 71. But I’ve decided that just for this one purpose — having he right to sit rocking and singing to the Lord for a while each day  — I think I do want to be an “old lady.” Because it’s true: old ladies get to sit in rocking chairs and sing hymns.

“This is my story; this is my song:
Praising my Savior all the day long.
This is my story; this is my song:
Praising my Savior all the day long.”

 


Hymn lyrics by Fanny J. Crosby

 

 


 

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Lenten Poems — week 6

 

 

SATAN CAST DOWN - GOLD LARGER

THE PRICE IS PAID

How deep and dark the grave in which they laid the Lord.
And naught to give Him hope except the Father’s Word.
But ’twas enough, for God had said, “When day three comes,
You’ll rise with life anew and come again to Home.”

Throughout the vigil, silence reigned and men did mourn.
And in the halls of Hell, the demons, they did groan:
This man from off the cross had stormed their barriers staid.
Hell panicked at the word from Heaven: “The price is paid!”

Then Jesus, Son of God and Son of Man, stepped forth
And grasped the keys of Death and Hell with violent force.
Then rose through realms beneath to burst from earth and grave.
His shout of victory rang abroad: “Mankind is saved!”

 

 

 


 

Weekend Coffee Share – 4/7/19

COFFEE - YELLOW SMILEY -- Hans PX
photo courtesy of Hans @ pixabay.com

I’ve missed taking part in the weekend coffee shares, but my schedule just didn’t leave me much time for posting. If we were having coffee on this Sunday evening, I’d tell you that this weekend has been a wild ride. But I did manage to get two important things done.

The most important was planning and officiating at a funeral for a cousin. I’ve officiated at many funerals, but this one presented a particular challenge. Many members of the family (not the ones I’m close to, thank the Lord) have been having disagreements and considerable strife about a number of things. There are so many factions who are angry with one of the other factions that one other family member who traveled with me to the service said she was concerned that after we left there might be an actual fight break out.

You can imagine what it was like to try to plan and carry out the service, when so many of the people don’t want to speak to or cooperate with others, and when almost anything you say could possibly inflame touchy feelings even more.  One woman, who stood like a stone right in my line of vision through the whole service, had such a look of hatred on her face the whole time that I was amazed she could even maintain the look and stance for such a long period. She came to the service, but did not speak to any of her brothers or sisters.

Whew!  I lived through it, and I’m trusting the Lord that some of the things I shared will actually help bring some healing to those poor troubled people.  But I’m very glad it’s over.  I cannot understand a person allowing another person’s bad treatment of him to cause that first person to become so angry and bitter that it makes him physically sick. Why hold onto bitterness and resentment?  It certainly doesn’t hurt the person one is bitter against. It hurts only the one who feels and feeds that bitterness and hatred.

But, as I said, it’s over now, and I at least did what I was supposed to do to try to help.

The other accomplishment was a new video in my “Audio Short Stories” series. I managed to get that done late Saturday night, so I’m inserting it into this post so that — just in case you’re a person who enjoys sitting back and listening to a story rather than having to read it for yourself — you can listen to it right here.

I hope all the rest of you had relaxing weekends. I’m planning on my next weekend being more quiet and laid-back. Maybe I can get some painting done. Goodness knows I need to de-stress.  🙂

Oh, I almost forgot! Another happy thing happened on Saturday: a good friend came by with a gift for me. It was a lovely, fancy white cup and saucer with a silver fleur de lis design on it. It came complete with a little silver spoon — and a huge truffle inside to go with the coffee I was undoubtedly going to have in that cup. It was such a delightful surprise and a welcome positive addition to my troubled weekend.

Here’s the story I promised.  Kick back, prop your feet up, sip your coffee, and enjoy.

 

 

To participate in Weekend Coffee Share, visit Eclectic Ali for the details.

 

 


 

Lenten Poems — week 5

 

JESUS IN GARDEN - NEGATIVE -KAREN'S WHIMSY

 

O, Lamb of God
So pure, so holy, undefiled,
You came so meekly,
Vulnerable, a tiny child.

You took our sin
And took all of its consequence.
You chose the cross,
And on it your lifeblood was spent.

But for what cause,
When tempted in the garden that night,
Did you still choose
To let yourself be crucified?

You told us, Lord;
If we’d just listen, we would know.
You said, “Because
I love the Father, I will go.”

Lord, work in us
That holy and obedient love,
That we, when tried,
Will speak and act only for God.

 

~~~
(Photo courtesy of Karen’s Whimsy)

 

 

 


 

Oooops, NaPoWriMo Slipped Up On Me

APRIL 1ST -- Alexas_Fotos -- PX
Alexas_Foto@ Pixabay.com

 

A Poet Must Do What a Poet Must Do

I’m not ready for NaPoWriMo.
I should create some kind of verse.
And I’d better get onto it pronto:
It’s already April the first.

A poem with some kind of meaning
Is not always easy to write.
So I’ll just have to settle for something
That’s simple, perhaps even trite.

A jingle with sing-songy wording,
A love poem packed with cliches,
A limerick rolling with laughter —
One a day for the next thirty days!

Well, I can’t sit here just ruminating.
I’m a poet, and my duty’s clear:
NaPoWriMo has issued the challenge,
So I’ll start with this poem right here.

 


For the sake of full disclosure, I will say right now that I do not have any plans to write a new poem every day during the month of April. My work schedule will simply not allow for that amount of added writing this month. But I was feeling giddy about 1:00 this morning, and I figured I’d at least write one little ditty to kick off NaPoWriMo, 2019.


 

Audio Short Stories — My Newest Project

Do you enjoy just sitting back and listening to stories? Then you’ll enjoy my newest project: Audio Short Stories. You’ll find the first story on YouTube now. I’ll make it really easy for you and insert it right here, but if you like it, hop over to the YouTube site so you can click the “thumbs up” symbol and subscribe to my channel so you’ll know when I post the next story in the project.

`

 

 

 

 

 


 

Lenten Poems — week 4

NAZARETH, ISRAEL - EDITED

Nathaniel’s Answer

Nathaniel was a man who knew no guile.
He walked with Jesus, loved Him all the while.
When first he heard His name, a question posed
But waited ’til the answer was disclosed.

“From Nazareth can any good come forth?”
He asked of those who knew that city’s worth.
He asked for meditation, not reply,
Yet found the answer true in Jesus’ eyes.

And although from the garden he did run
With others as they scattered one by one,
As Roman guards led Jesus, bound, away,
There came a reckoning after the third day.

As Mary ran to spread the glorious news,
Nathaniel, hidd’n with others, all confused,
Received her words with doubt, and hope, and fear,
And hungered so His Master’s voice to hear.

Then Jesus stood among them, His work done:
Salvation for the world from Nazareth comes.

 

 

 


 

Lenten Poems — week 3

CRUCIFIX - FOR YOU - GOSPEL GIFS

SUFFICIENT

Seized and stripped and slapped and spit upon,
Scornful salutations; sorrow; shame;
Satan stalks the Son of God and Son of Man
Scarlet stripes, scalding tears, searing pain;

Search the scriptures, surely they the story tell:
Insatiable evil strikes; the Lamb is slain.

But surely, it’s my sins He bore, my sorrow and shame,
My sickness, my distress, my grief, my pain.

Submitted Sacrifice: He sealed the promise;
Sufficient, He bought me peace with God again.

 

 

 


 

Lenten Poems — week 2

CROSS WITH CROWN OF THORNS

SACRIFICE

A crown,
A diadem,
A shackle placed upon the brow.

Bestowed
Contemptuously,
And scarlet robe on shoulders bowed.

The grief,
The agony,
The tortuous, mutilating pain.

All born
By Innocence
To give me peace and health again.

A cross,
On Calvary:
To execute the Father’s plan.

A tomb,
Now empty stands:
He’s paid the price for every man.

 

 

 


 

Lenten Poems – week 1

Today is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent. A few years ago I wrote 7 poems during Holy Week — or Passion Week — leading up to Easter Sunday. This year in commemoration of our Lord’s suffer, I’m going to repost those poems on each Wednesday in Lent — and then post the last of the 7 on Easter Sunday. I hope they bless you and inspire you to gratefully meditate on how our Lord Jesus suffered for our sins and in our place to work our total redemption and salvation.

 


CROWN OF THORNS ULTRA MODERNBARABBAS

My heart pounded
As they dragged me out.
They stood me close beside Him,
And I looked about.

The crowd was frenzied:
With rage and raw disgust.
I wasn’t sure the real cause–
Why they fumed and cussed.

I glanced beside me
To catch a glimpse of Him,
But what my eyes saw in His
Convicted me within.

When guards shouted,
“Who is it going to be?”
Then I understood they’d choose
To set one free.

“Free Barabbas!
Set Barabbas free!”
I could not believe my ears:
They chose, not Him, but me.

“What of Jesus?”
Then asked the guards.
“Crucify Him! Crucify Him!
He is not our God!”

My shackles fell off:
By law a free man.
Pilate called for water then
And there he washed his hands.

The day grew dark
As He hung there,
Upon a cross with thieves each side,
Then He said a prayer.

He prayed, “Forgive them.”
Did that include me?
When He said, “It is finished!”
I knew He’d died for me
— Barabbas.

 

 

 


 

Weekend Coffee Share 3/3/19

COFFEE PLOPPING -- AnnieSplatt -- PX

If we were sharing a cup of coffee today, I’d tell, first of all, that the only reason I’m able to share this morning is because it is snowing too hard for me to get to church. I go to a church that is about 30 miles from my house, and right now the visibility is way too low to make a trip like that — especially with the roads rapidly being covered with snow and the temperatures dropping. I did go out and clean off my car (from the earlier morning snow), thinking it would let up, and I could go, but that didn’t work out at all.

Anyway, there’s not a whole lot to tell you about this week. I taught my “Writing Fiction” and my “Biblical Pathways to Health & Wholeness” classes.  The students seem to be enjoying both classes, so that’s always a good thing.

Actually, I did have one student who complained a couple weeks ago because the Writing Fiction class didn’t give him “what he wanted.” He had taken that class from me a few terms ago, and complained then as well. He seems to think that since he wrote non–fiction for years that a lot of the writing basics we cover are way too elementary for him. The course description made it clear what we would cover, but that didn’t seem to register with him. Not only that, but a good deal of the things we’re covering are things he is not nearly as proficient in as he seems to think — as evidenced by the work he turned in for the assignments.

The first time he took the class he decided to drop it after about 4 weeks. Then when we offered it again this term, he suddenly e-mailed me to see if this class would offer something he could use. I told him clearly that I would be covering the same things I covered in the class he had dropped, which includes all the basic skills needed to write good fiction: developing good strong plots, developing believable characters and learning how to introduce them into the story in interesting ways, learning to use dialogue and body language well, learning how to develop and present setting, learning how to edit, and learning how to choose the best publishing options (along with several other helpful tips). Now, I ask you: what more could a student want from a Writing Fiction class???

But I suggested to him that since I would be covering all those same things, and he didn’t find them helpful a few terms earlier, I didn’t think he’d be interested in this class. But he enrolled anyway. He came to class long enough to be an aggravation and then dropped the class again. It turns out that what he’s looking for is some kind of writing theory and philosophy — whatever that is — and for what purpose, I can’t begin to figure out.

I told him that, in my opinion, teaching theory and philosophy did absolutely no good for the students who want to learn to write good stories that will entertain people and sell books. Theory and philosophy don’t help you plot a good story or create engaging, true-to-life characters, or help you jump through all the right hoops to get those stories published.  I can honestly say I’m relieved he dropped the class. I hope he finds what he’s looking for.

Well, it looks as though I’ve taken our coffee time to vent. Hope you don’t mind. And, guess what: it has almost stopped snowing!  Yay!  I think I’m going to get a fresh cup of coffee and a cookie to celebrate.

Hope you have a great week. And if you’ve never taken part in the “Weekend Coffee Share,” visit Eclectic Ali , check out the easy instructions, and share about your week.