Moma would have been 68 today. I look back and think what a blessing she was those 66 years and her constant smile. She really did her best to live each day as if it were her last. She got up in the (EARLY!) morning thinking about the possibilities of the day in such a positive light. Sure, she had days that she was discouraged, and sure there were days she was stressed or grouchy. But as a whole she was such an optimist with a smile.
She thrived on being busy helping others. Her greatest joy was helping children learn in the Christian school. She loved taking photos of the kids too. She would talk about each of the kids to me on the phone, she was so proud of them and the boys and girls of character that they were becoming as they grew up. She would send me photos of them, and even the bulletin boards she made for them.
She was so busy working and serving all the time. I never felt slighted by it. Maybe because it was so selfless and beautiful the way she and daddy reached out. I guess if you were charting it you would say that, as time was spent, she and daddy spent too much time in ministry and not enough time with family. But that just wouldn't be true. Someone once said that faith is "caught" not "taught", well they taught us by living their passion for Christ in every big or small way they could. What a blessing.
I am so blessed to have learned from her (by example):
I think of her when we sing in church. She loved to sing.
I think of her when I cook. She made a fresh hot meal with all the sides, every night. (Until Dorothy Baker took over cooking for us as a ministry to our family for several years.)
I think of her when I teach. Sometimes I sound and act like her as a teacher!
I think of her when I take photos of my boys and all the kids I love here in Iowa. She loved every child that I loved and talked about, even if she had never met them. She loved my friends kids, my co-workers kids, my kids at church, my nephews and nieces. All the way from Arkansas there were kids that she loved and prayed for in Iowa.
God could have healed her, he could have given her more time, and she would have continued to shine.
God could have given more time to Stephen ...... and Mike and Janet and so many others.
But no. His plan was different. That is why I love His Word. It explains it all. It all makes sense out of the confusion. He makes sense out of the "why?!?". His Word comforts, His Word explains, His Word makes sense of it all.
I want so desperately for others to find the truth in His Word. I want you to see His plan is not what our human minds think is important and real. I want you to seek it out. I want you to find Him.
He wants to be found. He wants to know you. He loves you. He wants to heal you. On the inside. He wants your heart.
His Word tells us He doesn't want anyone to go suffer the punishment of hell, but he will not force that choice on anyone, He made a way for you to choose Him. A way to remove the punishment- but you must seek Him out. Go to His Word - start in the book of John or Romans. He will not disappoint. He will meet you there.
Moma taught me this. OR should I say that I "caught" this from her - that God is real, and loving and that each person needs to find Him.
Thank you, Moma. I love you and miss you. You are now experiencing the joy of seeing Christ face to face and that makes my heart so full, even when I am sad. And I smile.