Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Lord, keep me from the habit of thinking I must say something on every subject and on every occasion.
Release me from craving to straighten out everybody’s affairs.
Keep my mind free from the recital of endless details – give me wings to get to the point.
I ask for grace enough to listen to the tales of other’s pains. Help me to endure them with patience. But seal my lip on my own aches and pain – they are increasing and my love of rehearsing them is becoming sweeter as the years go by.
Teach me the glorious lesson that occasionally it is possible that I may be mistaken.
Keep me reasonably sweet; I do not want to be a saint – some of them are so hard to live with – but a sour old person is one of the crowning works of the devil.
Give me the ability to see good things in unexpected places, and talents in unexpected people. And, give me, O Lord, the grace to tell them so.
Make me thoughtful but not moody, helpful but not bossy. With my vast store of wisdom, it seems a pity not to use it all – but Thou knowest, Lord, that I want a few friends at the end.
-- Author Unknown
Monday, September 28, 2009
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Friday, September 25, 2009
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Monday, September 21, 2009
Saturday, September 19, 2009
Friday, September 18, 2009
One day he hitched the wagon up to the tractor and took us up into the woods for a picnic. With planks for backless seats we pitched along the rutty, overgrown path, laughing together, becoming family. We found the old sugar shack where Grampa Mills had made maple syrup long ago, and the tree where Tom's mom's initials had been carved 60 years earlier. Tom carved our initials in a heart on that same tree, what has come to be called our "family tree."
Dad built the blue house mostly by himself, with the occasional help of family and professionals. It was large and lovely and brought him great pleasure. So did his wood working projects. In the barn he had a workshop to make clocks and candlesticks, many featuring a lovely double spindle. He held the patent on the machine that turned those spindles. His new home showcased his woodworking.
They moved into the blue house just before Tommy was born and rented out the yellow house with the stipulation that if any of their kids ever wanted to move to the farm the renters would be served notice! That's just what happened two years later when we moved to Houghton. For three years we lived down the road from Grama and Grampa and called the yellow house "home."
Dad's garden was always huge and plentiful. So was the pond he'd had dug, until the local heron discovered it! He delighted in seeing his family, getting the mail, reading a good book, and savoring delicious food. Most every meal was "the best I ever had." He was our main man when it came to getting our magazine in the mail.
One of the sweetest gifts Dad gave me was permission to eat strawberry shortcake for breakfast, lunch and dinner! He'd make several trips a season to the fields to pick berries before breakfast and come home to fresh shortcake just out of the oven. Some days that's about all they ate. It didn't take me long to adopt that tradition!
Dad is with the Lord now, whole and full of wonder. If we work in Heaven, and I believe we do, Dad is doing finish work on the mansions the Lord is preparing. After all, we won't need clocks or candles in Heaven.