A little blurb

My sweet daughter-in-love gave me a gift. Every monday a question is sent to my inbox stimulating a response about my life. She is such a lover of history; and family stories mean the world to her, so each week i plow through the memories highlighting the ones that i hope will edify, bless and enlighten the readers as the years unfold.

The selection below is a little blurb from a question about the ‘fads’ i remembered. Sharing it here because it matters. :-)…we now join the story in progress:

Upon returning to the USA, the hippy movement was in its finest day! The onset of the movement was centered in the Haight Ashbury district in San Francisco as well as on college campuses across the country. The movement was founded on Peace and Love. It really was a pure thing. We were against the War in Viet Nam and protested very peacefully. We loved everybody. I even put a flower in the pocket of a policeman making him smile. We wore bell bottoms and tie-dyed shirts. We listened and sang along with the Greats in protest folk music and early classic rock and roll.

We really did spread love and peace to all we met. Then the bad people brought the drugs into our midst and the whole movement lost it purity and became a disgrace. Most of us grieved about that, and some began to partake of the devil weed and other mind-altering substances. Our pure intentions were dismissed and the evil ones (the bankers, CIA and mafia that killed President Kennedy) took over. The Nation would never be the same, until now. 🙂

We were a determined bunch though! We would not take any nonsense that threatened our God-given Freedom as Americans. My generation would have called the entire plandemic a hoax from the start, and most of us 60 and above probably did. We have seen this before. The takeover attempt of a generation was perpetrated on the bell bottomed hippies; and we know what it looks like. I guess we neglected to instill that passion for freedom in our offspring, and now, like dumb sheep, we see compliance ushering in bondage.

Back to fads…mostly my generation produced the very best in music. Other than the classic Beethoven, Mozart and Chopin era, the late 50’s and all the 60’s brought the absolute BEST in musical skill and content. We sang our way through the troubles and proclaimed our freedom in songs. Each musician was skilled beyond their natural abilities it seemed; and we wallowed in the giant collection of talented performers.

Woodstock was wonderful, so they say, and our own Northwest had a similar gathering in those years. The Sky River Rock Festival and Lighter Than Air Fair hosted Greats like the Doors, Jimmy Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jefferson Starship and many others. It lasted three days, and was an event that will always have a place in my memory!

My generation was given a bad reputation over the years; but I lived it, and can testify of the amazing goodness, love and decency that undergirded the baby boomers as they embraced Fads, stuck together and found adulthood. Now, the times they are a changin, and we still ask, how many deaths will it take till we know that too many people have died?…the answer my friend, is still blowing in the wind, the answer is blowing in the wind. (Acts chapter 2)

Today I Nailed It

All the three long years of this thing called widowhood, the definition of loss and its effects has remained hazy until today. Today I got it. Today I nailed it, as my contractor husband would say. Yes, today one sentence sums up all those vacant moments; all those random tears and the ache that always grips some aspect of my waking hours. One revelatory sentence gathers all those emotions together, secures them in an invisible bag, cinches them up and ties a neat bow on top. It is:
I am no longer the most important person in anyone’s life.
As a tiny baby, to the parents, I was the most important thing they had. As years moved on, and the responsibility of child rearing increased, I remained the most important; for I was the ‘project’ that needed work. The twenties chased away that ‘most important’ identity as I searched for my own, on my own.
That identity found me when God brought my life’s mate and made me a mommy. To those tiny babies, I was, once again, the most important person to somebody. Then It was my turn to focus on the ‘project.’ As those years flew by, my human value to my dear husband increased and once again I was the most important person in someone’s life, and he became the most important person to me.
Then, after 40 years, he left. The children all grown, became the most important people in someone else’s life, and their children looked to them for direction and significance.
I begin to list those important people above me in the line; my mommy, dad, grandma, grandpa, uncles, aunts, cousins…all gone now. Then I look to those in the line behind me, and the stunning revelation of singularity, aloneness and insignificance sweeps into now with the grip of reality. I am, no longer the most important person to another human being at all.
Oh, I am loved, tolerated and hopefully respected to a certain level, but that special feeling of value that comes when one knows they are the most important person in the world to another is gone.
The saying is, that we really don’t know what we have until it’s gone. I can tell you this feeling of unique importance is easy to take for granted during the years we walk therein. Oh yes, but when it is gone…the vacancy can be debilitating if we wallow therein. So, what to do now that I have nailed it?
How do I re-identify as a valuable human without the confirmation of that significant other? When it really sinks in that my importance to other human beings is cursory at best and certainly not unique or paramount to them, how do I behave, how do I spend the time left? The answer is as obvious as the question is rhetorical.
I now choose to make other people feel important to me. I choose to focus on the needs, hurts and victories of others in my life so that a small sense of significance might soften their individual transitions as the years unfold. Afterall, life hurts and we need each other to find value and personal worth to carry on. Giving of our love, time, understanding, eye contact and genuine interest builds people, and in the building up of others, we nail it for ourselves.

A little Devotional worth sharing

1 Samuel 15-17 & Psalm 85
By: Marthalee Lyman

We can only do our best with the information, skill and drive we possess at any given moment. Yet, we seem to always second guess our motives, authority and delivery; undermining self-confidence. When added to this inner monologue of supposed failure we find actual failure and deep disappointment, the result is abject depression and mourning.

In the reading today, Samuel’s broken heart stirs me. Samuel, called by God as a very young child, walks in confidence as God’s prophet for many years. He listens to God and obeys every command. His life as a prophet is well known and many in his sphere of influence look to him with respect and admiration. He has a great position of honor both with God and man.

Saul’s disobedience and subsequent demotion as king breaks the heart of Samuel. He mourns deeply and continually for the failure of this God-appointed man. In his grief, there had to be moments of personal reflection wondering where HE had failed Saul, or what HE might have done differently to bring about a better outcome.

Samuel brutally kills Agag to fulfill the command of God King Saul failed to accomplish. Samuel goes to Ramah, his home and continues his mourning. Then, (I like how the NLT shows us) God shakes Samuel with these words: “You have mourned long enough for Saul…” Get on with your duties! And Samuel sets off to anoint David as the new King.

We all second guess ourselves from time to time. “If only I had not spoken so harshly…If only I had not done that certain thing…It would have been better if I was not even there!” Oh, how the enemy and our own mental monologues condemn us! We need God to shake us! We need to listen to God as he does shake us and tell us to be about the business at hand!

When disappointment and failure dog our steps, there needs to be a resolve inside that stops the mental condemnation, silences the daily accuser and leans into the quiet whisper of the still small voice of God pressing us onward. Obey like Samuel and get on with life!

Had the prophet remained in Ramah licking his wounds, so to speak, would there be a story of Goliath? If Samuel remained in mourning, would we even have a David? You see, God really depends on the obedience of his chosen to move His plans to completion.

To simply throw up our hands and proclaim, “It’s ok, God’s Got This!” is not a statement of Faith, but of cowardice. It is up to us to make our calling and election sure. We are commanded to go…to make disciples…to spread the Gospel. We cannot remain silent in the face of suffering and sorrow. We MUST pray. We MUST listen and we must hear God’s voice and we MUST follow his lead.

How do we know we are headed in the right direction? We move forward and watch for God’s STOP signs. That is the walk of Faith. When God speaks, sometimes he only gives us a sentence or two, seldom the whole picture. He may nudge us one way; a way that seems so out of our comfort zone; but when we obey and trust him, we see, in retrospect, his guiding hand.

David was so deeply incensed at the challenge from Goliath that he moved toward him in the confidence and trust of his victorious God. That is how we conquer the Goliaths in our lives. Sometimes righteous indignation can spur us on to radical Faith and obedient action. Watch for the nudges from Him, then watch for the stop signs, too.

Psalm 85: 8-9 (NLT) I listen carefully to what God the Lord is saying, for he speaks peace to his faithful people. But let them not return to their foolish ways. Surely his salvation is near to those who fear him, so our land will be filled with his glory.

P.S. So I have a brief post script to my devotional… After typing it today and thinking about the admonition to go forth and follow the leading of the Lord, I went to the grocery store. Nothing very eventful happened until I got in my car to leave … started my engine and suddenly there is a powerhouse 20’s some thing young lady standing outside my passenger window. So I put down the window and she asks me if I have a sore foot. I say, “No it’s my hip.” She said, “Well, the Lord told me to come and pray for you.” How about that! So we grab hands and begin to pray. She stops me and said “No, just receive. Don’t pray, just receive.” She proceeded to ask the Lord to not only heal my hip but also my left knee! We have this marvelous time in the Holy Ghost give each other a high-5 and off she goes.

So there I sit in absolute amazement at how God not only speaks but shows just how he wants it done and I’m claiming total healing in Jesus name! So because of one obedient servant, I see manifested the duty of us all!

Motivation

Purposeful living! This is the challenge at any age. Really, one would think with age and maturity come focus and purposeful use of time. Afterall, mature people seldom procrastinate or stop short of task completion, right? How I wish that were true! Excuses abound it seems and perhaps as we ‘mature’ we simply allow more elaborate excuses and justifications for inactivity.

This may seem like a rambling stream of conscience writing, but now it will be clearer. Since my husband left for Glory, I have used the grief process as an excuse for inactivity on many levels. Even during the justification process in my head i knew i was using grief as the excuse to not write, not exercise, not study, etc.

Some days were a huge success because laundry was folded and dishes done. Yet, the weightier matters were pushed ahead to a more convenient time. (I think of Felix in Acts 24 who, though trembling, sent away the Apostle Paul until a ‘convenient season.’) Oh my, dear Jesus, never let me become like Felix or Agrippa!

Now, three years after his departure, I come face to face with a personal weakness. Procrastination! Therefore, in order to form a more perfect me, and in order to live ‘on purpose,’ steps will be ordered in God’s Word and prayer made daily for growth in this area of weakness.

The first step, taken today actually, is the completion of a much delinquent blog post on this website. So, here it is! And you, dear reader get to witness the turning of a page in the grief process as I move into a new level of success and obedience by writing these thoughts to you.

Thank you for reading this, and mention me from time to time in your prayers if you remember.