Saturday, September 24, 2011

Welcome Autumn

Unbelievable. Another season has arrived in Texas. And it is an unusual autumn for us - -  dull, brown, and dried up.

Thankfully, my world is made so small and I'm brought into reality by my blogging friends who are amazing.

          Dawn posted about devastating floods from Pennsylvania where she volunteered with the Red Cross and shared God’s love.

          Beth posted from here in our hometown about rushing to Bastrop, Texas to help victims of raging fires there. And, withOUT her permission, I quote Beth’s closing statement in her amazing post of September 13: The effects of this fire will be long-lasting and long felt. I am so sorry for the lives lost. I am so thankful that a community of people in the midst of a huge tragedy can be the hands and feet of God.
          Both the floods ‘up north’ and the fires ‘down the road’ were no respecter of persons and angrily consumed homes, some lives, and memories and refrigerators and photographs and livelihoods.

          Ohio, Missouri, New York, and Pennsylvania pray that the rain will cease, for a while.
          All of Texas prays for rain to fall to feed and bless and protect our land.

And there I was, spending most of the summer complaining—loudly at home and widely on blogs—just because I was temporarily sick.

Forgive me, Holy Father; forgive me friends and neighbors who have lost everything.

Megan at Sabbath Says reminded me, so today, I went back to my already worn out copy of Ann Voskamp’s A Thousand Gifts and began recounting my own blessings. Makes me ‘shamed to have complained.

          I left off around July 20th with something about: My office is clean.
That was THEN.

THIS is now J

214.    Chicken thawing for a healthy and hardy supper tonight.
215.    Sleep. Any time it comes.
216.    Life in a small town and getting phone call 8 a.m. to share news of an injured biker …    “just because it’s a neighbor and you might need to know.”
217.    Laundry finished – dried, folded, put away.
218.    Dishwasher quietly cleaning and sanitizing my dishes, pots, and pans while I write.
219.    A great-niece who loves to stop by and who will spend time with Daughter while Dear Heart and I take a day off to celebrate nine years of marriage.
220.    Nine years of marriage !!! Thank you, Holy Father, for a loving man, companionship,    and  family.
221.    For fire fighters across Texas who stand at the ready for another Red Alert this weekend – high temperatures and high winds. Bless and protect them, Holy Father.
222.    For good friends who stand by and insist that I get out of the house for lunch, fellowship, and laughter.
223.     For following a nagging in my heart when I took time to dial a friend in New York. We haven’t talked in months and months and haven’t seen each other in over four years. But her laughter, our private jokes, our memories, and our concerns picked up across the miles with no interruption. Tea and whispers, Mary calls it!
224.    For the safe birth of another baby boy—a great, great nephew. Now Dear Heart and I each have  a Mason among our nephews. J

And, dear readers, as the Apostle Paul taught us in his epistles, I offer to you:
          Grace to you and peace … I thank my God always concerning you, for the grace of God which was given you in Christ Jesus.