Friday, March 16, 2012

The Simple Woman's Daybook - Pausing & Reflecting

There are many reasons I like doing The Simple Woman's Daybook post. To begin, it puts me in a place of reflection. I get to reflect on what I have been able to accomplish for the day no matter how small. Sometimes even the smallest tasks can be major victories when our day hasn't quite lined up with my expectations. Writing also allows me to appreciate the things outside my window, a picture thought, a scripture or a quote. And posting a few things that I have planned also allows me, however slight, to stay on mission for the week and keep even small goals.

I usually go back a few times during the week and re-read my posting just to quadruple check for spelling and grammar errors. Even though I double check and use spell checker, after going over it a few times, I still fail to catch obvious errors that I usually find later that week. When I look at "A Few Plans for the Week" it reminds me of a scene in the movie Cranford between Deborah and Mattie Jenkyns and Mary Smith, where they explain to Mary that when they were little girls, Deborah and Mattie's father used to have them journal in the morning about their plans for the day and then in the evening they were to go back to their journal and write about what really happened.

When I go back to my Simple Days journal entries during the week, I can see that I stayed on mission and other times, I just laugh or giggle and think of a few bible verses like Proverbs 16: 9 and 19:21. Last week, was a week that really drove those verses home in so many ways with the death our son's friend's father.

I had the privilege of meeting John only once...five years ago. And my, what an impressive man. What I saw was a man that was very eloquent, loved God, and loved his family. And although I would on occasion get to speak to his wife, Maria, or see his daughters at school, I knew very little about them. Our son, Matthew has been tutoring his daughter in a class they both have. Last week they had a standing appointment to Skype on Thursday for tutoring.  Matthew waited and waited...and growing a little weary, he sent her a text asking if they were still Skyping. His friend wrote back,"My dad is missing...I can't right now." When Matthew told me, I grew anxious for them. I hoped that it was a flat tire and a dead cell phone. We waited for a while together hoping to hear some news. I got to the point where I could not stay up so I went to bed and as I laid in bed I prayed. Later that night, Matthew came in and woke me up, "Mom, they found him..... he's dead."  I was horrified and shocked as was he.

Evidently, he was jogging and collapsed. We don't know the particulars and in the end, for the purpose of my personal reflection, the "how" is irrelevant. It is a huge loss.  My heart broke for Maria and the girls and their son. The oldest is graduating in May; John will miss that and all will miss his presence. There will be so many things that he will not be there for...and so many events that are yet to come in the near and the far distant future. It is never a good time for a parent to die and it is never a good time for your soul-mate and best friend to die. But his passing caused me to pause and reflect.

This week I looked at my husband with a greater appreciation and love. He is the love of my life and I am blessed to be his wife. I have gone to bed each night wondering if I could be as strong as I heard Maria has been. I've looked at my children and just cherished their faces, their hugs, and each moment I've spent with them even though at times is has been under the unpleasant task of doling out discipline. 

The services for John were remarkable I'm told. My son attended as long as he could and he said it was incredible - even after two hours people were still sharing the memories and impact this wonderful man of God had on their lives. Evidently, John was a man that left his mark wherever he went. His mark was the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Those that I spoke to all said the same, "There was a man that loved God, his family and shared the Gospel." A friend and I discussed the pain of his absence for his family and we agreed that it's never a good time to die especially when you are leaving family behind, but then she remarked that, maybe this was His race...and he ran it and ran it extremely well. In fact, he beat us all to the finish line and in his passing, goes the passing of the all of us (2 Timothy 4:7). Our challenge is to do the love God with all our heart, mind, and soul, to love our family, and to spread the Good News of Salvation in spoken word or in the silence of an act of love and kindness...because we may be the only bible someone will ever read.

Forever in His Debt,

7 friends said...:

  1. Greetings Monica...please allow me to introduce myself to you. I am Grace. And it is a pleasure to meet you.

    I did SOOOO love the comment about running the race well and finishing it before the rest of us. Such a wonderful insight and personalized understanding of The Apostle Paul's words.

    Thank you for posting.
    I'll be adding yours to the list of blogs that I follow.

    May God Bless and Keep You.

    In Him,

  2. It is nice to meet you! I'm looking foward to read your blog!
    Your newest follower!
    Blessings, Wendy

    1. Hi Wendy,
      Thanks so much and I'm happy to meet you as well. I love your blog as well and notice that you have at least a Hispanic father (Juan). My father's name was Jorge. I'm sorry about all the devastation that your area suffered, but Praise be His name that no one perished in the devastation.

      Blessings to you and your home,

  3. Hi Monica,
    It is so nice to meet you and I must say that you really do have the gift of writing and sharing your heart! What you shared about the man who died was very moving and your last line is one of my FAV sayings - "Sometime you are the only bible a person will read/have." You & I have several things in common: I am a Christian, I live in VA (Richmond), and I think Keren is one of the sweetest, most talented gals around!
    Best wishes & keep up the good work!
    Mary Patterson

  4. Hi Mary,
    Thank you for your sweet comments. I live in Richmond as well! Keren is one of the sweetest and very talented ladies around! I hope to write more. It seems that while I homeschool writing can be a challenge, but over the summer it is easier.

    I'm going to look around your blog and store. I love vintage.

    Have a wonderful and blessed week,

  5. Hello Monica,

    Your post does give reason to reflect. The sudden death of your sons friends dad and the tributes at his funeral were incredible to read.

    I appreciate stopping by to meet you and spend some time on your blog. If you would like, this post would be very special to share on my Think on These Things (

    Kindly, Lorraine

  6. Hi Lorraine,

    How very kind you are, thank you. I'd love to share my posting. I will post it this week as I am getting ready to put the household to bed. I think your blog is wonderful. It's nice to see a blog that has those types of postings. I think reflection and pause is a so essential to growing in Christ. May I ask you what is Scherenschnitte? I have never heard of it.

    Wishing you a blessed week,


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