Tag Archive | encourage

Sounds in the Old Farmhouse

Not too many years ago, I wondered if life would always be a hectic whirlwind of activities. The calendar was rainbow colored, a different color for each member of the family plus orange for ‘ALL family event’. Would there ever be time to do all the laundry, wash, fold, AND put away, in one day? The sounds that filled this old farmhouse:
giggling,
     talking,
          teasing,
               playing drums, trombone, clarinet, piano,
                    arguing,
                         reading,
                              praying.
Beautiful sounds, yet some days I longed for quiet. Peace and quiet.

The Lord knew what he was doing when one child at a time moved out and into their own home. This Momma would not have known what to do if they had all left at once! Just as they were added to the family one at a time, and necessary adjustments were made, the same has been done in reverse.

Peace and quiet have returned to this old farmhouse. I don’t have to rush through my shower, or be paged while in the bathroom. However, some days it seems too quiet. Those are the days that I especially miss my children and their families, and I long for the miles between us to be erased. It is so selfish of me to want to have them close. We live in a day of instant messaging, video calling, photo sharing, and telephoning most anywhere they may be. How did the Momma’s say final farewells as their children boarded the ships to sail the ocean blue? How did they say goodbye as they rolled away in rattly, bumpy wagons to a land wild and unknown? With our modern technology, the miles seem much shorter than they did even thirty-some years ago when I moved 6 states away from where I always called home. Sometimes this old farmhouse is more than quiet, it is SILENT, and in the absence of my bustling family I miss the sounds of:
giggling,
     talking,
          teasing,
               playing drums, trombone, clarinet, piano,
                    arguing,
                         reading,
                              praying.

However, I am reminded that they are not mine to cling to, and by doing so I would essentially be putting them above God. In the Bible we are told to seek God above everything. My love for my family should never supersede my love for God! My children were given to me to love, raise, teach and then release to go wherever God calls them. I tend to need reminders to release rather than clutch, whether they are in Kansas, Guatemala, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Russia, Africa…

Thank you, Lord, for today’s quiet moments. Thank you, that when this old farmhouse seems too silent, you fill it with whispers of love, encouragement, reassurance, forgiveness, peace, and your presence.

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Powerful Words

He could have brought me a beautiful bouquet, baked my favorite cheesecake, or any number of gifts, yet none would be as special as the e-card he sent. His message was not one of empty words. It was powerful, filled with love, straight from his heart.

I didn’t even know my husband knew where to find, nor how to send an e-card. I send e-cards frequently and show him what I’m sending, but I cannot recall a time when he sent one himself. For a first time visitor to bluemountain.com or other such e-card sites, the task of selecting, personalizing and sending a card can become quite time consuming.

Before reading the personal message or opening the card, I was touched by the gesture of love and surprise I found in my “In Box”. However, a big lump closed my throat as I read his sweet, personal sentiment. Then tears welled up in my eyes as I read and watched  the slideshow card play.

My husband of 30 years is not a man of frivolous words. Rather, he says what he means and means what he says. He is not usually the first in a group to speak, but listens intently, ponders awhile, and then speaks. That’s why I treasure notes from him. I know he doesn’t scribble something hastily, and he probably read and viewed a dozen e-cards before making his selection.

Can you tell this made me feel loved and cherished? In our society, cutting and sarcastic words seem to be the norm. However, such words, even if intended as jest, often emotionally hurt and tear down. Words are very powerful, and once they leave our mouth they cannot be taken back.

 “Some people make cutting remarks, but the words of the wise bring healing.” Proverbs 12:28 NLT

 “Kind words are like honey— sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.” Proverbs 16:24 NLT

 The Bible is full of instruction of how we should and should not talk to one another. Quickly scan through the book of Proverbs for the key words: tongue, words or speak. There is verse after verse pertaining to what we say whether good or bad, uplifting or deflating, encouraging or insulting. A wise woman often said:

“If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all!”

Words are powerful! Choose words that encourage rather than tear down.

“May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to you, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer.”  Psalms 19:14 NLT