Tag Archives: Restoration

Brotherly Love

10 Jul

Your love has given me
great joy and encouragement,
because you, brother,
have refreshed the hearts
of the Lord’s people.
Philemon 1:7

 

Summertime holidays are always fun — outdoor activities or the cool inside comfort of A/C, sunshine or rain, car or motorcycle! What tops them off as some of the best times of the year is that we make an effort to be with family … whether it’s a quick trip to the south side of Baltimore to see our Loves or a run up north along the Susquehanna River to visit Tim’s mother. Celebrating the 4th of July was no exception!

 

July 2, 2016

Enjoying the new patio set with family!

What an extra special treat July 4th was for us this year as we began to plan a fun-filled weekend with my little brother and his family! Weeks of anticipation, menu-planning, much-needed projects placed on the to-do list (company coming is a great motivator and inspiration!!) and the purchase of a brand new patio set for our back deck! In celebration of our 36th wedding anniversary tomorrow, I consider this first-time ever patio set purchase to be an amazing gift from my loving hubby!

 

The big day finally arrived and numerous updates were texted as they drove from Indiana to Pennsylvania.  Several hours and many miles later, we welcomed five road-weary travelers to our home and began our holiday weekend of family fun. Even before bedtime, we were entertained by Princesses Zarah and Remi as they found the dress-up corner in our playroom. Once the kids were all tucked in bed for the night, it was so good to simply sit and talk to Tim and Courtney.

 

Hershey Chocolate World

Hershey Chocolate World

Tim and Courtney with their family

Tim and Courtney with their family

A visit to Hershey Chocolate World was enjoyed by all, heart strings were pulled as old photo albums were perused, and amazingly comfortable weather allowed us to be outside to enjoy the kids in the backyard and to sit out on the new patio furniture! There was Sunday morning worship together and lots of family games testing our memory and our patience … and always good food and pleasant company!

 

The 4th of July was made even more special as our Loves from the south side of Baltimore joined our holiday party with more excitement, more chatter and lots more yummy food! We enjoyed outdoor and indoor play, a piano recital, many pretend goodies prepared in the play kitchen and served to all, and a brief interlude of evening showers so the kids could light sparklers! What a fantastic family fun-filled day to end our holiday weekend!

 

The toys have been put away, the kitchen cleaned up and even the left-overs have been eaten. Sometimes I think that the house is too quiet and too big, but then I remember how incredibly blessed we are to literally have a haven of rest for guests to come to, a place for children to play, and a warm and inviting home for friends and family to gather and simply sit and talk. Those few days with my little brother and his wife were priceless to my big-sister heart! In preparation for their visit, I prayed that God would mend any old wounds and restore a sibling relationship that just existed through the years without any real connection. I longed for a renewed appreciation and respect for him – one that he deserves as a person, as a husband and a father, as a police officer, and as my brother. As I stood in the driveway and hugged and kissed them all good-bye on Tuesday morning, my heart was full and running over with gratitude, love, and anticipation of the next time!

 

Won’t you join me as I continue to celebrate and embrace the days of summer, appreciation of family and friends, and most importantly, God’s love for each of us?!

 

Until next time,
Debbie

This is how we know what love is:
Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.
And we ought to lay down our lives
for our brothers and sisters.
1 John 3:16

We ought always to thank God for you,
brothers and sisters, and rightly so,
because your faith is growing more and more,
and the love all of you have for one another is increasing.
1 Thessalonians 1:3

 

 

 

 

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Shattered … Yet Restored

21 Mar

 Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him.
He alone is my rock and my salvation;  he is my fortress, I will not be shaken.
My salvation and my honor depend on God; he is my mighty rock, my refuge.
Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him,
 for God is our refuge.
Psalm 62:5-8

 

The past few days have taken my family on an unexpected journey in the event of my mother falling on Wednesday afternoon.  X-rays revealed the startling diagnosis of a shattered elbow.  Extreme swelling necessitated a slight delay before surgery, which the orthopedic surgeon scheduled for Saturday afternoon.  Dr. Ralston explained that he would go in, clean up all of the fragments of bones that had shattered, and reconnect the tendons to a different bone, giving back full mobility and use of mom’s right elbow.  He called this restoration surgery. 

After a couple hours, the doctor reported to the family that the surgery was a success.  Due to the fact that mother’s stomach reacts so adversely to pain medication and anesthesia, even with the help of finagrin and other aids, she endured a most miserable night and early morning.  However, the power of prayer prevailed and the Lord removed the nausea that usually lingers for days.  After she and the nurses were entertained by that little brother of mine, mom was sent home to recuperate.  The next scheduled visit to the surgeon is in one week, with routine visits to follow until she is completely healed.

Shattered.  What in your life has been, or is shattered?  This word is extreme. The doctor explained that there are good breaks and there are bad breaks.  Mom’s was not only bad, it was shattered.  What was normal, whole, and functioning suddenly became severely broken into pieces.   Can you relate?  Is it a marriage that is ending in divorce or possibly a relationship involving drug and alcohol abuse?  With the downturn of the economy, it might be a shattered career.  An unexpected illness or a sudden death … or memories of childhood abuse that surface from time to time, shattering years of suppressed feelings.  Whatever it is for you … and for me, there is hope. 

 Show me your ways, O LORD, teach me your paths;
guide me in your truth and teach me,
for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.
Psalm 25:4-5 

We wait in hope for the LORD; he is our help and our shield.
In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name.
May your unfailing love rest upon us, O LORD,
even as we put our hope in you.
Psalm 33:20-22

Restoration.  The process will take time and it will be painful.  It all begins with trust and acknowledgement in the Great Physician who promises to restore and make you strong, firm, and steadfast.

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.
Proverbs 3:5-6

And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while,
will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.
To him be the power for ever and ever. Amen.
1 Peter 5:10-11

My mom’s accident happened as Tim and I were literally driving out of town for a 2 week vacation.  Time was already requested off from work, our grandson’s first birthday was being celebrated in just a few days, and our cruise to the Bahamas paid in advance and the confetti was waiting.  My siblings knew all of this and supported us in our decision to keep driving east, but my heart still ached for my mother and the pain she was enduring.  Shatter wasn’t directly a personal experience for me on Wednesday, since my world quickly consisted of precious Cole kisses and little boy love.  Nonetheless, my spirit was preoccupied with concern as I stayed in contact with family as much as possible during those hours of urgency, and my heart remained prayerful.  Maybe you know someone whose world is being shattered and you are compelled by God to carry them in prayer …

We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure,
so that we despaired even of life.
Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death.
But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead.
He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us.
On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us,
as you help us by your prayers.
1 Corinthians 1:8-11

Life is full of moments … good ones and bad ones.  Some of the good ones are really special while some of the bad are those that shatter.  Please join me today in seeking the One in Whom we find hope, restoration, and healing in our time of extreme pain.

Till next time,
Debbie