Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Thankful November: remaining thankful

Dear readers . . .

The last few days have led me to this post. Thankfulness, as a state of mind. A lifestyle of gratitude. I know not much of this but all of its' beauty I wish to intake and therefore portray. I like to think about the way that something framed and hanging on a wall coerces us to view it over and over again, for the hundredth time in a day and not grow weary of its' image. However, many things in this life become hum drum and even wearisome. What is the difference? Why do we dig back in our memories, while flipping through a photo album many times a year . . . where is our vigor to repeat our daily routines with nostalgia and gratefulness? Where does the mystery lie? In the designation of splendor, I do believe.

A framed wall hanging has been designated "Special" . . . worthy of our glance or even stare.

Every day is an opportunity to glance . . . stare . . . at God's handiwork in our lives. And to be grateful. His message to us in the business is to pass not by a day without remaining thankful for all it holds. Have we not become stronger because of the burdens we once carried? Do we not know more now that we have lost sight, wandered for a while, and yet returned? Can we now love more because of the losses we have hated to remember? This is a gift.

This day, the last day in November, 2011 . . . this Wednesday, is a gift. I am thankful for Monday's New Mercies, Tuesday's mini muffins, and Wednesday's lessons learned. But mostly, as I close this months' blog theme, I am ever so thankful that I have the deep need to remain thankful all year long. It's for my health, spiritual, mental, emotional, and even physical. It's for my joy. That it might be full. It's for my focus. That it might remain on things above. And it's for my love. That it might be far reaching and unconditional because of Christ and the blessings from His sacrifice.

I want to be thankful for one more specific thing before I close out this post.

I am grateful this Thankful November, for my mama.

Lynne Clement has been my mother for over 27 years (including womb time, lol) and this time of year, long ago, she was wishing that I would make my exit out into the world. Little did she know that I would be a total o 3 1/2 weeks late. Phew! I started my life giving my mother heck. haha! I have tried my best not to continue. She loves God. She loves her daughters. She loves people as family. She inspires, desires, presses through, and makes the best of everything. God made her solid and yet lovely. She never gives up. Thank you mama for your love and support, yes. But mainly . . .thank you, mama, for being you. You are LOVED.!

Proverbs 31:18 "Her children rise up, and call her blessed..."

If my mother has impacted your life in some way . . . send her a note, a message, an e-mail, or give her a call. She's done so much for so many . . .I encourage you to encourage her! She would never ask for it. That is why I do :)

Monday, November 28, 2011

Thankful November: Days 20-27 (Phew, what a week!)

Day 20: Peg Leg Petes
One of my favorite restaurants of all time is our Pensacola classic, Peg Leg Petes! If you LOVE seafood but have a lot of folks around you regularly that don't care for it, the restaurant of choice is rarely seafood . . . you pretty much go with the majority, you know? Therefore, I never eat seafood, one of my favorites!!

When Jaami and Tato come to town, we eat seafood :)

Now, I'm very grateful for Jaami and Tato, don't get me wrong but on Sunday, I was super grateful for Peg Leg Petes (The restaurant, not the man. Although, if the man originally was responsible for opening the restaurant than I'm grateful for him as well). One of the reasons is the actual food. It's delish!
My lunch: Raw oysters! Tabasco sauce, on a cracker, and with the coctail and horsradish mixed together to top it off . . . oh yeah :))) Grouper nuggets and old fashioned french fries, along with about 15 coke refills, lol, I was good to go!
Another reason is because it now holds a heap of good memories. Just knowing you're going there will put you in a good mood! Large enough booths to hold the lot of us and if we need two booths . . . great! The more the merrier!

(Laps in writing) . . .

Days 21-27 are quite a blur as I look back but I will attempt to be clearly heartfelt . . . each day deserved its' own exclamation of gratefulness. No doubt. Best week ever :)

This past week left me thankful for . . .

Consistent work, the sharing of lives, the provision of food, dining together, creativity, pinterest, & working together to achieve something incredible, the marriage union, and Moses (my car that took me to Jax & back in one days' time!).

At this time, I will journal a bit instead of making lists. It works better with my Monday morning heart. Also, this is a good time to say that I most likely will never do a monthly theme that must be posted about every day. It stresses me out! I am not a fan of having a required post in my blog every day, especially subject to a theme. It limits my creative or inspired capabilities and it only becomes humdrum to my senses. Lesson learned! Haha!

My heart has been filled to over-flowing because of the happenings of this last week! "Happenings" would include tasks, events, conversations, and the presence of people I love in close proximity.

My 4 sisters and I CHERISH our time together. For many years, we were deprived of this joy and now I feel the need (as do they I'm sure) to cram as much of it into a holiday week as possible! We would of course love to enjoy more time together throughout the year but living in separate locations and building separate lives in the directions of our individual giftings and purposes in this world, does not allow us that luxury. Time and monetary needs for the capability of such moments more often, are just not available for our convenience. So we make the most of every second we get. I know I do. Every minute must be made to feel like an hour and having an entire week almost was more than I could have dreamed for. Tori was a little late on the arrival, as she pursued her new adventure in VA but as soon as I saw her face down the airport tunnel . . . I felt as if our world was being made right. Though brief still, Thanksgiving 2011 was as perfect at this world produces. People disagreed, made plans without notice, arrived late to functions, and even squabbled at the Thanksgiving table (I'm human, okay?!!) . . . and in each of those times I was reminded that we are a family. An imperfect unit designed by God for His glory. I believe that in our efforts to be grateful this year, we were able to lift Him up in a way that left Him smiling at our human antics. I know He's a fan of LMFAO and certainly not because of the acronym. haha. But because of the way it has brought the Clement 5 (plus Nila Blue!) together to make memories that will last until we can no longer "Wop," "Wobble," or "Shuffle."

We pray that day never comes :)

I am so grateful for my bro in-laws! They are wonderful and the three of them added so much to our Thanksgiving this year. Actually, they just add a lot to our family in general. I wouldn't want to go back to all girls, the boys add the perfect balance to our mostly feminine presence. Thanks to the boys . . . you are LOVED..

Another holiday with Maw maw was precious. She even said so as we told what we were thankful for around the "Family Time" table! She said that she was thankful to spend another year with us, being thankful. We all heartily agreed. She's been through a lot this year and we all recognize the limit of her life more than we ever have. Blessings I pray for Maw maw . . . may she live in our Lord's care and may she see another thankful year! 93, here she comes!!

My Mimi traveled all the way from St. Pete (driving!) to spend Thanskgiving week with us! It was such an awesome time spent with her . . . mostly the chatting and the many hugs! She is a wildwoman and I love it! By "wild" I mean that she is different. I like different. For example . . . the server at Peg Legs was stressed to the max and stressing us out too. She stopped him, clapped her hands together and told him to take 3 deep breaths (in the most gracious, southern bell voice I've ever heard from her mouth!). He did. The whole meal turned around :)

My mom. Wow. What is there really to say. She is awesome! I may need to spend one of my last Thankful November days, strictly on the presentation of my deep spirit of gratefulness for her.  . . I think I will. Love you mom, you rocked this last week! I could see it in your eyes . . . the love for your daughters and son in-laws, grand-babies and life/people in general. What a fabulous example of God's grace you are to all men. Blessed and thankful.

Well, I could go on but I won't. I need to post about World Race and there are still a couple of days to go until Thankful November comes to a close. Only a couple! Praise the Lord for His continued presence and faithfulness to His children!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Thankful November: The command to "Go"

Day 19: The command to "Go"


 Matthew 28:18-20

King James Version (KJV for an obvious reason, check it out!)

18And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
19Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
20Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

Thankful November: Days 17 & 18

My heart is FILLED with thankfulness this evening!

Day 17: Surprises

     Have I ever expressed my great enthusiasm over surprises on "My story, His story" before? I don't think I have! Either way, let me now say to you . . . I LOVE SURPRISES!! Surprises have sparked some of my favorite memories from my childhood, teen, and young adult life! God has a way of speaking a little bit of His love for me via surprises. It's hard to explain but I'll try.

A surprise feels like a whisper in my ear.

     The whisper is sudden, loving, and filled with enthusiasm! The whisper is really a loud cry from loved ones in a darkened room, a gift left unattended on my front step, a message in my inbox of uncertain expression . . . something unexpected. Something divine. An act of love from the Father of lights, through His people, and into the well spring of my soul. Have I mentioned that I love surprises? lol.

Day 18: Grandmothers

(Top: Maw maw . . . Bottom: Mimi)

     One of my grandmothers arrived in town tonight from her home in St. Petersburg. Hence the recognition of such gratefulness. Her name . . . at least to me, is "Mimi." Her actual name, Lois Anne Carr, is very similar to my own and often she has referred to me as, "Little LA." I always enjoy this spoken expression of her care and even pride over my presence in her lineage.

     My other grandmother, "Maw maw" or Gera Maxine Blalock, is my hometown hero. She lives and ages in Pensacola, where I currently reside. How precious she is. She is the epitome of a "Matriarch" and could never see a beggar continue to beg.

     My grandmothers are both "Southern Ladies" and know how to make someone feel welcome and comfortable into their home or even  presence. Both of my grandmothers are hilarious. Each in their own way of course. My "Mimi" is lovely, quirky, and all together fabulous! My "Maw maw" is gracious, giving, and retains an heir of elegance, even at 92. Blessed am I to follow the footsteps of such women of valour. A terrific heritage. I am grateful.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

5 more days of Thankful November

To backtrack . . . I have 5 specific things to be grateful for this Thankful November:

1. Patience.

     We joke around a lot about praying for patience and how that's like a superstitious jinks or something. Well, I have yet to pray that prayer and yet opportunities to be an example of God's patient spirit have presented themselves daily during Thankful November. Have I succeeded every time, DEFINITELY not. BUT GOD in His grace has given me yet another chance to try.

     Having said that, I believe I have needed those around me to display an unusually great amount of patience with me this month as well! It's kind of becoming a theme. One that I hope won't continue into Merry December :) 

2. Hang out time 

     I have been especially grateful the last few days for precious "hang out" time spent with special people in my life. I have a feeling that as the holidays approach, I will experience this gratitude over and over. My love language is unquestionably "Quality Time" and nothing fills my "love tank" like a good heartfelt chat with a little laughter . . . okay, a LOT of laughter :) 

3. Blockbuster 

     For one reason, because Thanksgiving/Christmas movies just warm my heart! Favorite one recently . . . "An Old Fashioned Thanksgiving" (Little Women"esc"). Sitting around a heartfelt, family friendly, holiday movie really brings folks together.

     For reason number two . . . Well, some of you will know and most will have to just wonder ;) 

4. Space savers 

     As I helped Tori and Justin pack last night (until the wee hours of the morning), I could not have been more grateful for anything than I was of those nifty space saver bags! I had a great time (deliriously of course) sitting on them until they had as little air as possible left in them. What an awesome packing tool! Wish I had owned some of those this summer when I moved my entire life from Orlando to Pensacola in one trip . . . Props to the Elantra Touring . . . Aka MOSES!!

5. The knowledge that I will see you again 

     I am grateful for this very specific thing because I know that as surely as the miles shall separate me from those I love as time progresses . . . I am confident that one day, here or there, earth or heaven, I have the promise of seeing my brothers and sisters in Christ again. PTL! Saying "see ya later" doesn't feel like loss when I build that feeling on the truth that is God's Word and the proof that is in the pudding :)

As I continue to show thanks this month, please feel free to comment and tell me what you are thankful for . . . Even that very day!  


Friday, November 11, 2011

Thankful November: Day 10 & . . . 11/11/11

On day 10:

I was thankful for a specific tree . . . this tree is special because every time I pass by it I look at it. You know, something that just never changes in my life. How special that tree is to me. Sometimes change is good but when it seems to all happen at the same time, it can be quite overwhelming. I love my leaning tree on Spanish Trail Rd. in Pensacola, FL. If somebody tried to cut it down, I might just climb it like good ol' Butterfly did and not come down until they put away the chainsaw! Just sayin'!!

Today, 11/11/11:

I am so very grateful for the acoustic guitar. Random? Probably to you but if you are at all like me, somebody picking one of these babies up just makes you smile from ear to ear like all in the world is momentarily right. The sound of it's strum . . . and even the squeak of the slide across its' string makes me wonder why in the world I ever worry. I consider this to be one of God's gifts to me tor remind me that He is the great I AM.


Psalm 69:30 (NAS) I will praise the name of God with song, And shall magnify Him with thanksgiving

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Thankful November: Days 7, 8, & 9

Okay, so it's obvious that I stink at keeping up with a blog every day :)

On day 7 I was thankful for: Faith

Yes, I have a friend named "Faith" and she is awesome. But she reminded me of the "Faith" I have in Christ to do His work, in all situations. He never grows weary as Isaiah tells us and I'm very, very grateful for that this November.

On day 8 I was thankful for: New beginnings

Big ones, like my move away from college and even more so when I moved home to Pensacola but also for the ways in which we have the option to begin anew each and every day. I am especially grateful that even though a single day may begin in a rough way, God gives me the opportunity to turn to Him in my frustration, regroup and be refreshed in His goodness to finish the day out. Thankful am I for new beginnings, however big or small.

Today, day 9, I am thankful for: My new Nephew

My sister Jaami and brother in-law Tato, announced that their baby is a little BOY . . . yes, you read that right! We will actually have a little boy in our family very soon :) What a precious miracle. Girl or boy we would have been thrilled (we've grown kind of fond of the female gender) but a boy is something new for all of us to grasp. I can already just imagine how spoiled this young man will be . . . and rightly so. Now I have the coolest niece in the world and a baby nephew that I couldn't love more :)

Thankful November is off to an eventful start . . . I can't imagine the awesome things that will happen throughout this month. I remain grateful.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Thankful November: LIFE - LOVE - FAMILY

Thankful November - Days 4, 5, & 6:


Over the past three days, there has been a great deal of sorrow, mixed with celebration. Quite the emotional roller-coaster! Thankfully, my dizziness is almost completely gone. Praise the Lord! With that gratefulness proclaimed, my dear Mrs. Sue's death was soon followed by hard work in preparing my company dancers for their first performance of the year at the Pensacola Arts Festival. In the midst of the hours spent in this manner, my brother in law earned his wings as a Naval Aviation Pilot! Woot woot! His family flew in and together with mine, we celebrated his great achievement with much merriment! Friday was followed by Saturday, the day of the performance, and it went incredibly! Yet ANOTHER celebration! Blessings abound.

As the performance ended and congratulations had been spoken, I ran (literally) to my car and zoomed off to pack for my trip out of town. I arrived for Mrs. Sue's funeral only 15 minutes early and realized that I might need help to progress to the door. All of the distractions had accomplished something great, to keep my mind from the realization of what I was about to experience until I arrived at the church's front door. Two friends helped me in, one to quickly follow and with arms wrapped around and sincere grief, combined with gratitude, we wept. Silent weeping that was gut wrenching but phenomenally pure and easing of my troubled spirit. We were all in one accord. What a great and godly lady. Though tears abound, a celebration was extended for all present. We expressed our love from the pulpit and the pew, all in our own little ways.

The funeral came to a close, along with the need to weep. I was thankful. My best friend ushered me to her car and we went and did something I hadn't felt as if I would be able to do for weeks . . . we ate. A calzone, somehow, was the perfect solace to the ache of my weary body. A few cokes later and we were off for the last portion of saying goodbye. Thanks to my dear friend Keri, I was able to walk the path to the counseling room that changed my life forever almost five years ago and truly say "see ya later" in my heart. I had to see the place where it all started, where the relationship began. Amen.

I was soon greeted by a face I had not seen in years, my old friend K-Ross! We laughed, hugged, and then she said she had to go get a coat because she was freezing . . . some things never change. Hm. I like that. The rest of the evening was truly grand in many ways. I receive so much joy from watching others accomplish new things . . . I can't really express it other than to say that I simply cannot keep from smiling ear to ear, while watching. Beauty abounds. The show choir at my old college performed last night and watching my friends and even my "kids" from last semester sing, dance, and stretch themselves in confidence . . . ooh! It just gives me chills! I was especially proud of my dear Amber. She has come out of so much and has become so much and more :) My lovely friend Faith was a hoot to watch and again I was reminded how truly gifted/talented my friends are. My night ended late with a great time of dancing and laughter with a few friends, new and old.

Today I don't feel very well, a little troubled, a little morose, and even a little yucky. BUT GOD is so real to me in this moment. Heaven has become a legitimate place in my mind as never before. Family and friends . . . well, they're just a gift. Hugs. Hugs abound. Sometimes we lose family. Sometimes we lose friends. Whether through death or just life. It happens. How shall we live from that moment. Succumbed by our sorrow? Drowning in our anxiety? Or do we Move Forward. Love generously. Celebrate life. Remain grateful for the bond of family. I choose these.

My sister, a life-long best friend, is moving away with her husband this coming weekend. He is being stationed in VA and it feels very far away. I knew we would all grow up and I also knew in my heart of hearts that none of us would remain all that close in proximity BUT GOD is our rock, our refuge and strength and He is the greatest tie that binds. LOVE abounds. I will miss my sister as I have and will miss my others when we are apart. This week we will pack, love, hug, cry a little, rejoice for the time we have been given, and then Move Forward. This is the theme of 2011, no doubt.  

I won't write this long of a post for each day of this month but today I wanted to sum up a very important combination of grateful feelings within the story of my weekend. GRACE abounds.  

This November I am THANKFUL for LIFE, LOVE, and FAMILY . . . Among so many other things :)

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Thankful November - Day 3: "Earth Angel"

This Thursday I am thankful but in an unexpected way. Continuing Thankful November may be harder than first thought:

This earth lost a woman of great worth today for heaven has claimed its' prize. A true earth angel. Sue Gilbert slipped from life to eternal life today and found herself looking into the face of the man she's known so well. Never have I ever experienced death so closely before and never will a woman that has been so alive be thought of as dead to me. She is still alive, alive with Christ forever.

Tears slide down my face as I type these thankful words because my heart is simultaneously experiencing the balance of sorrow and delight. I am so powerfully grateful, beyond words I do confess, to have met Mrs. Sue Gilbert. Now I can go on and say that to have just met her would be worthy of a post all of its' own. But so much more was experienced across a desk, a dinner table, a love seat . . . That I . . . I struggle to find the few words that are needed to fill this blog post space. You don't want to read forever but my thankfulness to God for this lady would definitely last forever long.  

She was my counselor

Put simply, my family would not have the anticipation rising of another Thanksgiving spent together, if it weren't for my Mrs. Sue. To save the confidentiality necessary, I will leave my heart's cry there. Thankful. This Thanksgiving, the Blalocks, Clements, Samalas, Palacios, Caigles, and Siddalls should all live in one accord, grateful for Mrs. Sue and the blessing of freedom she brought us by way of her gift of counseling. God's gift in her.  

As for me personally, well I don't mind sharing a little. She changed my life. Well, Christ through her. I went from being a shell of who I was meant to be to who I am today . . . Faulty on my own but pursuing Christ and His story for me and therefore thriving! Sure, bad days, weeks, even months but God is my hope, my refuge, and the only One Who is worthy of my greatest affection and allegiance and in Him do I trust to get me through the good, the bad, the ugly, and even the really ugly. He used Mrs. Sue to show me that I have a future. That I am not owned by any earthly being but by Christ. Because of Mrs. Sue, I learned to break free from the bondage of pleasing and to see myself as a beautiful daughter of an all powerful and yet graceful King. She taught me as many times as it took for me to learn. So much patience. The subject that took the longest was the fact that Jesus had already paid the price for my wrong doings and short comings. I no longer needed to. No need to punish myself for my misdeeds or others' towards me. I am not perfect because of Mrs. Sue. I know I don't have to be perfect because of Mrs. Sue. Praise God! 

I saw her change many lives. As my life and a few of the closest around me's lives were changed by visiting her office once (sometimes twice) a week, I spread the word. If you need to cry . . . Go see Mrs. Sue. If you need to laugh . . . Go see Mrs. Sue. If you think you have too many issues . . . Go see Mrs. Sue. If you don't want to deal with your issues . . . For heaven's sake, GO SEE MRS. SUE!!! And cry you would, no matter how bravely you entered her door. There was just something about her face that made you say, "Okay, here's a safe place." Laugh, yes you CERTAINLY did! I was thinking about that earlier, smiling just a little. The woman truly opened up the door to laughter for me again. I know she did this for others too. Laughter is such good medicine and I believe she prescribed it in heavy doses. I smile now when I think of her. Right now, I'm smiling.  

One of the reasons she was so trusted as a counselor, was because she was authentic. Authenticity was all she knew. There were no pretenses. She was Mrs. Sue. The end. She made no apology for who she was but then again, she didn't need to. I told my friend Keri a few minutes after she went to heaven that I thought Mrs. Sue probably fits in there more than she did here. She was a little weird for this earth. Was she perfect? No way. She'd tell you that in about 2 seconds. Again, she knew she didn't have to be. That knowledge is powerful when seeking a holy life. Your weakness is just made perfect . . . Well, you know. 

She was my family 

After I moved to college, there was a season where I was only in contact with my mom. That's it. No other family members. Most because of my lack of gumption (that would follow after counseling of course!) and three because of extenuating circumstances. I soon would know family community again but for that short season, I was almost alone on this earth. There were many who stepped into the role of family in that needed time. Mrs. Sue was one of them. She became the Grandmother I had not been allowed to have. She became the mom for the 6 days a week that mine couldn't be. She became the sisters, that I missed so desperately. Mrs. Sue knows all my secrets and to heaven they have all been taken. Not just because she was my counselor but also because she was family and one of my dearest friends . . .  

She was one of my very best friends 

Oh, how I miss her right now. Already and she's only been gone from this earth for mere hours. She knows my secrets, yes. She was a light in a dark time, yes. She LOVED. me for who I was, no matter what state I was in. And then there's my love for her . . . Oh goodness, I could go on and on.  

I love the way her eyes twinkled 

Her smile was ravishing and her make-up almost always perfect, which made me chuckle through many conversations involving tears. Her love for people was astounding and her need to champion them, inspiring. Her arms were beautiful. She hugged so well. Her thoughts so intelligent. No one could have thought as far reaching into the mind of a person, without throwing a curve ball of judgment as she could. The way that she was gifted in her communication was just plain ridiculous. She could tell a person that they were prideful and somehow keep them in their chair for another hour, as they poured their heart out to her in their need. Not many can do that, even counselors. She was a gift. Bottom line. The woman was a saint. Yes, I looked up to her. Can you tell? Haha. 

Her talks were enlightening, encouraging, uplifting, bewildering, challenging, and all together lovely to enjoy. I loved her. I love her.  

She was my mentor 

I want to be stinkin' just like her! Well, my own form of her anyway (she would be frustrated to hear me want to repeat who she was . . . She didn't think overly highly of herself, just highly enough to be confident in sharing her life with others, knowing Christ had redeemed her). When I didn't know what to do, she gave me options, when I told her I wasn't ready, she mentioned sweetly that I was already doing it and didn't know. After I offered excuses for my poor behavior, one look told me she had already moved on and so should I. She lent me an ear and then told me where to go to find the answer. . . She sent me to Jesus. Always. She prayed with me and those are the sweetest times.  

If I can attempt to live as half of the woman that she was on this earth, I have achieved much. Unfortunately, attempting to achieve greatness was not what she did so therefore I have already fallen short. She would just tell me to live "called out" and to not give up on loving, living, laughing, dreaming, praying, being, and seeing what God's will was as I walked in light of His steps.  

I will miss her

I've never experienced loss so closely before, as I mentioned at the top of this post. I feel as if my lungs have been sucked of all their air. I feel helplessly lost in my heart's pounding rhythm. I have concerned myself with the feeling that I might unravel upon her death. Like my victories shall crumble as her life passes on to the next eternal. This is unrealistic considering my knowledge that God used Mrs. Sue as an instrument of His power and that HE will remain in me. I know this. I still felt the fear. That fear has passed with her. Seriously though, I feel odd and shaky and I have wondered what I might do tomorrow in light of her passing so many times tonight that my head can't stand the thought even once more. Nothing seems worthy of the honor in which I wish to bestow her. My grief has brought me to two places. This blog post. And my dance. I will dance for her. Tomorrow, I will pick myself out of the bed oh so early to take Malli to school and then I will dance. I will throw what I could do before work aside and I will choreograph SOMETHING in her honor. It's the best gift I have to give.   

The end of my post will be my words of Gratefulness to God for Mrs. Sue Gilbert. Forgive me for my lack of eloquence in this post. It's raw. My heart is raw. If you chose to read it anyway, all the way to here, you may just feel raw too. Just in case you are wondering, I was able to spend time with her in July, look her in the eyes as we exchanged meaningful, lasting words, and then enjoyed phone calls since then, including one with her only a few days ago where we did much the same thing. I am blessed. There was warning. Some never get that and so I am thankful once again for something else in this sad night. A little more time. 

"God! My heart hurts so badly. I can't believe she's gone. Selfishly, I just want her here. BUT GOD . . . You wanted her with You. And that was the best plan. She's with you now. She's happy. She's healthy. She sees Your face. She's worshiping you as only she could. She's walking the streets of gold. She's received her crown. She's feasting! Maybe her favorite part! Haha! God how could I ever thank you enough for blessing my life with being a part of hers. A very small part. You ordained our meeting 5 years before you would take her home. I almost missed her but not really, it was all part of Your plan. Thank you. I love her so much. I'm crying because I won't see her or hear her voice for possibly a long time and that makes me sad. BUT GOD . . . I will see her again. Thank You for that too. May my life be a reflection of Who You are by way of living out her example to me. May the words she spoke into my ears continue to reverberate. May my desire to bring to fruition all of the dreams we discussed be renewed by every passing day. May you accomplish in me all of the things she believed in me. She saw what Your plan for me is and even though she may not have known that she wouldn't see it accomplished with earthly eyes, she knew that you finish what You start and that this was only the beginning of the story that is yet to be told. Keep writing and I'll keep telling and I don't know if you do this but if so, tell my Mrs. Sue that I'm proud of her. I miss her and that I can't wait to see her again. I'll make her proud as I make You proud. That's all she ever wanted of me. To see more and more of You in me. I love you God and I can't wait to see how this story ends. You are good.  Amen." 

Special condolences to the Gilbert & Camps, along with other close friends and family. My heart is with you now. 

To Mrs. Sue . . .

A wobbly smile and a BIG "See ya later."
You are LOVED. by me, forever and always.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Thankful November

This November brings me the kind of excitement that only the month of November can and with that excitement also comes the reality of my gratefulness for this season I am richly blessed to live in.

For the entire month of November . . . I will attempt to be grateful every day. lol.

And since I have already failed my Thankful November blog series by missing day 1 . . . I shall give thee a double dose of my grateful heart! Feel blessed as I do :)

Day 1. Laughter

Laughter is medicine. Amen.

Day 2. Forgiveness

Forgiveness is better. Better than hate. Better than bitterness . . .and for me this November, better than resentment. I choose firgiveness. I have already been shown it. Amen.

See you tomorrow for day 3 of Thankful November . . . THANKS for stopping by :)