Forsaken Forest

FORSAKEN FOREST

There is a dark wall of forest around my heart.

The trees are tall, evergreen, angry, with needled fingers pointing while I cry on the ground.

Some say they love me but their words demand that I follow only their rules.

One berates me because I am friends with her mother, whom she hates.

Another hates me because I don’t like the same music as he.

Still another hates me because I remained in contact with her ex, a man who was my friend before I knew her.

Two more cut me out of their lives because I left a man who was my husband, with whom, they opine, I should have stayed. I regarded one as a father of sorts. He has departed this realm. Now the mind of the other, his wife, has left her aging body.

One especially was close to my heart. We talked almost daily. We shared meals, music, laughs, tears, secrets… Life.

Many more stand in the shadows, regardng me with disdain so deep, my attempts to reconcile are lost in their darkness.

Their roots whisper, “Remember when we used to talk? We laughed together many a time. We trusted each other with deep thoughts. We bounced ideas around. I knew you cared. You were always there. For me. But I remain as I was – not there for you.”

Scars are scribed where their branches had grown so closely into my life, they grafted in. When they pulled their arms away, it left open wounds.

I never cut them off myself. My arms still reach out, though with more caution: “Will you ever return?”

The wall of this forest blurs my outlook. Covered by the past, I am hidden from the future.

My yellowed leaves fall to the dirt like the friends who did forsake me.

As the wall of trees looks down on me, my figurative tears dilute their shadows and turn them to mud. I care less.

But, given time, light, and water – the water of love – I will grow back. Alone on the surface perhaps; damaged; spent; and even physically demolished, but never forsaken by the One who provides life eternal – Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin,
but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

(Proverbs 18:24)

If I Die…

For my loved ones – warm pie, a family favorite

Someday, maybe after I die, my kids might read through my blog and see this. I want to say here that I love all seven of you more than words can describe, and although I tell and show my love for you all the time, if there is any doubt, here it is in writing.

I also want to say that all the photos I have taken, videos I have made, and writing I have done in journals over the years is no indication of any favoritism. I would hate for any of my kids to feel I didn’t love them equally because there wasn’t as much record of them in one form or the other. Each one of you are tied for first place in my heart.

I am writing this on Friday, August 2, 2019. I will schedule this blog entry to be automatically posted on Tuesday, August 6, 2019.

I set it at 11:11 a.m. That is a special “TIME” of any day, of course, for us.

Why schedule it? Because I am planning to go on a two-night road trip tomorrow (which would be Saturday at the time of this writing) with my oldest daughter as she has an appointment and also wants to buy some things in the city that she can’t find up here. I don’t like to post on the internet about when I will be away, so by the time this publishes, I should already be back home…

Unless the Lord takes me to my forever home.

If I don’t return from my trip, may my remaining children know how dearly I love them. May they seek assurance through studying God’s word to know that faith in Jesus Christ alone is the only way to heaven. I want them to be with me there.

I want everyone who reads this to be there, too. I share the desire of God’s heart, which is that He is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

Sincerely, with love,
Mom/Steeny Lou

Sharp pain in right temple

All day, off and on, a sharp pain has stabbed my right temple. It lasts only a second at a time and happens sporadically, several times an hour.

I am so stressed and grieved, the instigating last straw being the loss of my writing in a WordPress draft last night, that I do not feel like myself. It is not like my usual state of depression when things overwhelm me. It is deeply physical this time, very much like grief over loss of a loved one.

I wanted to say this in case I die tonight and the reason is otherwise unknown. A friend or family member might see this and know I had a strange pain in my head, not like the usual pain attacks I get every few weeks.

I took an Aspirin pill within the past hour. I haven’t tried Aspirin in years.

If I die and am therefore unable to say further words directly, I leave this here: please, my family and friends, please, I beg you, read the Bible and seek to know the truth. Please accept Jesus and thereby embark on the same eternal destiny as me. I want to see you there. I love you and do not want you to perish.

Just a flower I saw yesterday

Peace, Love, and John Deere

It was the perfect June morning, still spring but on the cusp of summer, the air warm but not yet sweltering. Most mosquitoes used what little sense they had to remain asleep or unborn at that hour, except for the real go-getters eager to fill their beaks. The sun’s rays were fingers that elicited a symphony of scent: wild roses whispered in sweetly perfumed voices of full bloom all down the country lane, wafting out from beneath pine and spruce trees that sang their own songs of toasted aroma. A variety of birds blended in some audible notes of cheer.

And then a woman appeared in faded denim cut-off jeans and a loose pale lilac T-shirt, chugging along on a John Deere lawn tractor. She wasn’t mowing anything. She couldn’t if she wanted to, for the mower assembly was broken. Nothing but rocky asphalt was beneath the tires.

Chugga-lugga-luggin’ at a top speed of five miles per hour, she traversed six acres down the road, vaguely hoping the cop who lived nearby in the other direction wasn’t on duty. His kids are friends with some of her kids, so maybe he’d look the other way and say nothing if he saw her.

But maybe driving a lawn tractor on a public street isn’t a crime in that small community.

She parked the tractor on the grass by the driveway of her neighbour, shut it off, and walked into his garage.

“Helloooo!” she called out.

“Oh, good, you brought it,” said the neighbourhood mechanic.

“Yep, rode it over!” she said.

“Ya didn’t!” said his buddy from the other side of the garage, walking over to look into the yard.

“Oh, you DID!” he added, laughing.

Well, really, she saw no point in hooking up the utility trailer, setting up a ramp to it, and driving the tractor on, when she could save thirty minutes and drive over in five.

“Only at the 108 can we do that, eh!” she said, giggling.

“Annnd I just realized I forgot the cable that fell out of it,” she said.

“I’ll run home and get it,” she called out as she headed swiftly back down the driveway.

Around one corner and then another, she ran into a couple of neighbour guys sitting in lawn chairs. One chuckled, “What’d ya do, drive the tractor down the road and break it, so now you gotta walk home?”

She laughed, “No, the mower assembly has a broken cable, so I brought it down to Barry to fix. But I forgot the cable, so I gotta go grab it.”

I guess not a lot of people drive their lawn tractors on our roads, as when she returned a few minutes later with the cable in her hands, another neighbour called out from her front steps with a laugh in her voice, “Did you just ride by on your tractor?”

She laughed and said, “Yes, I did. I felt like the guy in that Adam Sandler movie, Waterboy, who rides his lawn tractor to town.”

Amidst more exchanged words and a few giggles, she showed the cable she’d just fetched, bid her neighbour a good day, and carried on.

After dropping off the cable, she ran home, did a few chores in the house, and an hour and forty dollars later, her tractor was ready. She ran down to retrieve it and buzzed on back home, dropping the mower into action when she reached her own acre of grass.

As she mowed, she wrote books in her mind. Some of the chapters might end up in print. Some might just be descriptive narratives like this here – mindless stories that are easier to recount than events that happened twenty and more years ago.

Oh, and no cops saw her, by the way. In fact, no vehicles drove by at all. Aside from a few fumes from the tractor, nothing polluted the fresh blue air that day, and for a rare twenty-four hours, all was well in her world.

Friendship Like This

im-just-going-to-come-right-out-and-say-it-23327841.png

O, to have a friend with whom sweet fellowship is shared,

Whose love is real and unretractable

Who sees my flaws and doesn’t try to fix them

Who can tell me he hates me but we know it’s a lie

Who laughs with – not at – me

Who lets me spoil him and doesn’t expect or demand

Unselfish love.

So rare a love.

The kind that lasts forever.

Hang on to those friends with love.

“And now abideth faith, hope, charity (love) these three; but the greatest of these is charity.”(1 Corinthians 13:13)

My Mother’s Hand

My sister’s hand holding our mother’s hand

One year ago to the day, my mom left this world.

I dreamed about her last night. It was as though she had never left. We went swimming together in an indoor pool within a huge log house with lots of windows letting in sunshine through a filter of tall evergreens. Later in the dream, we met up again with plans to return to the pool. Nothing at all crossed my mind to hint she had died. It seemed totally normal.

Man, I love dreams. That was a good one.

Only in the past few days have I begun to go through the boxes of my mom’s stuff that I brought up here last year. The thing that gets me the most is seeing her writing. Her nice, neat, left-handed writing was the same since I was little up until the notes she made during her final week in her old home.

Here is a photo my sister sent to my cell phone a year ago while a few of my kids and I were an hour into the drive on which we embarked after hearing the news of my mom having suffered a massive stroke. My mom was unconscious in a hospital bed as my sister held her hand and took that picture.

That’s the hand that penned letters, words, and thoughts I will always cherish. That’s the hand that raised me. That’s the hand that led me with love.

I didn’t get there in time. My mom passed away a couple hours after that photo was taken.

Some will understand when I say I will see my mom again and things will be better than ever. I look forward to that.

Sunshine: Is That A Promise Or A Threat?

Sunshine and blue skies hang out with me this morning while I enjoy a cup of coffee. (Yeah, that’s yellow coffee because I put turmeric in it, along with heated soy milk, black pepper, coconut oil, Himalayan pink salt, and stevia before frothing it all together in the blender and topping it with cinnamon.)

Birds warble and croon and serenade, my dogs bask in the warmth, my youngest children are sleeping in because they were up late last night goofing around, and a squirrel chirps at me from a stand of aspen.

“Good morning!” my heart sings and all seems perfect.

The lone red petunia on the table, though, is showing signs of death.

And the grass isn’t as green as it should be for this time of year.

The sunshine, as beautiful as it is, reminds me there hasn’t been a proper rainfall in a long time.

I think back to the summer of 2017 and recall how quickly the forest fires raged from the hills and threw their smoke to veil everything we saw. Everywhere smelled like barbecue. It smelled good, but that smell was deceiving.

The sunshine is so good, but we do need rain to cover our land with rejuvenating water.

Please be praying with me for healthy amounts of rain in our land of British Columbia, Canada, and for the same in the lands of others where things like intentional power blackouts due to lack of water in the dams are negatively affecting lives.

Time is running dry. The way the world is looking these days, the end of life as we know it could be sooner than we can imagine, if your individual death doesn’t happen suddenly first.  My number one hope is that all who read this will be in heaven with me as that moment comes. If you are not sure you will be in heaven, check out this page:

Why We Need To Be Saved and HOW

Or you might like this video. (Don’t worry about the word “Propaganda” – it’s just the stage name of the guy named Jason who’s talking. His way with words is mesmerizing and he’s got the gist of the message bang-on!)

Eternal life through faith in Jesus Christ, the living Son of God. That is a promise, not a threat. That is the incorruptible we can put on and wear knowing it will never fade, shrink, tear, ignite, crumble, or otherwise partake in the act of dying, for in Christ there is no more death. He conquered death after He died on the cross, and when we put Him on, we’re truly covered.

Three things will last forever – faith, hope, and love – and the greatest of these is love. (1 Corinthians 13:13)

 

A Good Sign!

This is the sweetest billboard I have ever seen. It always made me smile as I drove past it on Highway 97 when heading south out of Prince George, BC.

Sadly, as of a few months ago, that sign is no longer there. If I knew who to ask, I’d inquire as to its disappearance, and as to whether or not there is a plan for its return.

Wooden printed sign or not, though, I know God loves me, and His Son Jesus, who gave His life for me, WILL return. I hope you will be with us.

Here’s a chunk of Scripture from God’s word to consider if you are not sure you’re saved:

9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

12 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.

13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

(Romans 10:9-13)

Disagreement Is Not Necessarily Hatred

pussywillows

A photo of spring here in BC that has nothing to do with my post.

Don’t confuse disagreement with an absence of love.

Too often, if a person opposes something, the knee-jerk assumption on the part of an immature person is “you’re judging”, or “you’re hating”, or “you’re a bigot”. Those are some pretty judgy, hatey, bigoty things to call someone, don’t ya think?