Grandparents and Grandchildren

Grandma, Grandpa Me

People say my granddaughter, Grace, looks like me. I would hear that as a child as well, that I looked like my grandmother. I know I am a lot like her. I had a special bond with my grandmother.  One that couldn’t be expressed in words. One that I need to put into words.

I loved to go visit and stay with her. She never did anything that could be considered “special.” No walks or visits to fun places (she didn’t drive). She didn’t garden or craft or teach me anything that I didn’t learn somewhere else. Nothing about her  life was “grand.” She didn’t pass anything down to me but time. I would sit at the kitchen table and she would cook and from time to time sit with me.  Sometimes she would talk. Sometimes she didn’t. Maybe it was the “sameness” that we shared.  There was a silent understanding between us. Both of us were very “private” (I heard that often growing up as well).

As she got older and was alone, I would pick her up and take her to the doctor, other appointments or grocery shopping. Afterwards she would take me out to lunch at a diner nearby. Nothing fancy. But a treat just the same as I liked having the extra time with her as well as a meal out (rare in those times). I remember she would tell me stories. I wish I had written them down as they have faded from my memory.

I don’t remember much about my grandfather. He was there, but I don’t have any images of him being around as I relive the times with my grandmother at that kitchen table. He must have held a special place in my heart though. He passed away before I was married and I was heart-broken that he wouldn’t be there.

I still miss my grandmother. More than any other family member who has passed. I wish I could talk to her and tell her what I’m doing and where my life is now. She lived a simple life, so I’m sure mine would be beyond what she could understand. She would listen and say little I’m sure, but I’d still want to tell it. And to listen to her story, really listen. Though another part of me thinks we would just sit in each other’s silence and understand. No words spoken.

Now as a grandparent, there is no greater thing than spending time with my grandchildren. That they love coming to visit is a priceless treasure I hold dear in my heart.

Proverbs 17:6

Children’s children are a crown to the aged, and parents are the pride of their children.

There is a difference however, between the generation of my grandmother to my grandchildren. I prayed for my grandmother. Prayer, God, and my Risen Savior were not a part of her life.

And now I pray for my grandchildren:

Kynzi
Bryce
Camden
Colson
Caiden
Noah
Grace
Christian

That my God will be their God. That they will walk with Him all the days of their lives.

That I can pray for them, see God work in their lives (even the very youngs ones) is an even greater treasure I hold dear to my heart.

Genesis 17:7
I will establish my covenant as an everlasting covenant between me and you and your descendants after you for the generations to come, to be your God and the God of your descendants after you.

Blesses many times over. On the Journey, Jackie

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As a Martha …

I can’t sit still
I’m always on the go
Or planning the “next thing

Anyone who knows me, knows this. Which makes my word for the year, “rest” even more difficult. So God in his wisdom is using this…

2017-02-27 12.51.21.jpg

for a second time around to help me learn what rest means or at least slow me down. What started as a 4-6 week inconvenience has turned into a 3+ month ordeal. Sadly I don’t think I am learning my lesson well as I should be.

Because…. like Martha…

Luke 10:41 
“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things,

I keep thinking of all the things …

I “should” be doing
Want to be doing
Or that I’m behind on.

So I’m wrestling with God, with myself and the concept of rest.

to sit with God as Mary…

Luke 10:41 
but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

So does how does God take a Martha, like me, and have her become more like Mary.

The thing is, I like Martha. I like me. I don’t want to be a Mary. I’m not even sure I want to rest.

I do want to be the best me, which is the best of what Mary and Martha have to offer. So that the …

Places where I want to go
The people I want to see
And the things I want to do

are of His design and His timing. There is where my rest will be found.

Learning what it means to “rest.” On the Journey, Jackie

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Happy Birthday Bryce

You were 10 when you became part of our family. Your quiet, fun nature was a joy to be around. I’m not sure if you remember this Christmas, being bombarded by cousins and younger siblings. I think you were 13 in the picture below. The age to be “cool”. To find a spot to tune out everyone and play video games on your phone. Instead you made a point of playing and wrestling with them.

Bryce with cousins

Now years later, you’ve traded in holidays surrounded by family for the demands of college and sports. Still having fun, doing something you love, but I’m sure with a little bit of sadness.

Life is full of challenges and changes. Knowing you will face so many unknowns and demands on you as a young man, the verse that came to mind for you this year is …

Isaiah 40:31
but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

Bryce 2

You know what it is to run like the win as you go for the ball. You’ve had the high moments of a great play. A win. But I’m sure you’ve experienced your share of disappointments, in your sport, and in life. I imagine there are times when you are tired, or frustrated and discouraged as well.

When those days, moments, and times hit, remember the excitement and strength you have as you move down the field to make a play. Remember your days with family and the fun and warmth you found wrapped in your family’s love. They will help carry you through. Your gifts, talents, interests and abilities are God-given. He will give you the strength as you play, study, make difficult decisions and move forward in life.

So as you celebrate your birthday, take joy in knowing you are God’s and He has His hand on your life and He’ll give you the strength, courage and guidance in this coming year.

Have a great birthday this week Bryce and remember we love you. Greg and Jackie

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He Has Risen…

…and I am forever changed.

Bird in sunrise

What about you?

Matthew 28:6

He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay.

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It Takes Time

Waiting. Isn’t easy. Or pleasant. At least most of the time.

To watch this…

Beginning of a Sunrise 2

become this…

sunrise

Takes time.

Waiting.

I love watching the sunrise and sunset. But it takes time. And sometimes it feels like an eternity and in this case of the above sunrise, took 38 minutes. And that is a long time to sit and wait (for me anyway). But if I look away, the moment happens in an instant and it’s gone.

Waiting.

Why is it so hard
Why are we in such a hurry

Wishing for…
the next day
the weekend
the next holiday
answered prayer

Think about it, when was the last time you said, “I can’t wait ….”

But what about the moments we miss in the waiting because we are impatient and close ourselves (or our eyes) to living in today.

Birds in the sunrise

Whatever you are waiting for …

Something to start
something to end
the next event
healing
tomorrow

Remember there are moments you may miss today if you are living in the wished for tomorrow.

This is beautiful, but if I had looked away I would have missed the moments captured above.

Past the Sunrise

What are you missing out on, while waiting and looking ahead?

Psalm 37:7

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him.

Learning to be still as I wait. On the Journey, Jackie

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There is Always Going to be Something

I recently heard those words as part of a devotional and I’ve been mulling over them ever since. And I realized that I have a lot of discontent. The subtle kind. Just little wishes here and there and if I’m honest with myself there are some “not so little” things that I wish were different.

And when we got the only real snow of the year – very little. I was wishing for our life in Vermont. I loved Vermont. I always say, “I’d go back in a heartbeat” even though I know our life is here now and it is where God wants us. Life was simpler then. Part of it was the times and another part was the culture.

Snow

Then I started thinking about the “somethings” we faced in Vermont. Things may have been simpler, but money and food was scarce much of the time. We couldn’t provide for our children in the way we wanted and they shared their time with 6 daycare children and 5 special needs foster children. Family was 6 hours away and while that wasn’t far, it was too far and expensive for us to make trips back.

Looking back I wished I focused on more of what we had. A big old 1890’s farmhouse with 5 acres of land. The freedom to homeschool and a great place for the kids to play. Beauty surrounding us that can’t be put into words. A slower pace, with no technology or TV to interrupt daily life. Great friends, fun times as a family. A different kind of abundance.

Philippians 4:12
 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.

I don’t want to look back at my current days, wishing for them back while not enjoying them now. And yes, life is not “perfect” as I would describe perfect, but I have much to be grateful for. Blessings I never imagined possible.

Learning to live in the today and be content in any situation. On the Journey, Jackie

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Happy Birthday Caiden

caiden-playing-baseball

You get to share Grandpa’s birthday and I know he loves that. 🙂

I prayed for several weeks searching for the right verse for you for this year. The one that came to mind was:

Psalm 29:11 

The Lord gives strength to his people; the Lord blesses his people with peace.

Not because you need strength or peace, because your quiet, in the background way,  suggest that you are content. I thought about joy, as generally you are serious. But I didn’t want your seriousness be mistaken for a lack of joy because I have heard your infectious laugh and have seen your charming smile.

I want you to experience the strength and peace in knowing who you are and to be true to yourself.

Love, hugs and Happy Birthday Caiden. Love you, Grandma

 

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