Here I am at the end of my self-imposed sabbatical and feeling quite renewed and ready to re-enter society with all its demands and delights. As the calendar turns to February, I am excited to see what God has planned and if any of my plans match His.
We have had more beautiful snowstorms with warmer temperatures and larger flakes. I was able to get some lovely pictures of the snow falling and the landscape of our little corner of the world “just over the hilltop.” I hope you are enjoying the beauty of the season even if there is some frustrations that go along with it: slippery roads, shoveling, blustery winds, and I’d better stop there or I might not think winter is so beautiful after all.
wash me and I shall be whiter than snow
The brilliant glare of the snow reminds me of part of Psalm 51 that says “wash me and I shall be whiter than snow.” Is that how pure, clean, and bright we look to God after He has washed our sins away? What a marvelous transformation that is. And how truly grateful I am that He sees me cleaned and not stained.
Last week I had a delightful surprise when I called a dear friend to wish her a Happy Birthday. Since she moved to Tennessee, our communication seems few and far between and she had been on my mind and facebook reminded me it was her birthday. So, I called and to my delight a wispy voice answered saying, “Hi, Aunt Sharon.” My name had come up on the caller id and Rachel answered the phone. What a joy to visit with her for a brief time, but the greater joy was that she still called me “Aunt Sharon.” I am not her relative, but during a difficult time in my life, I and my five children were living in their home. She was the youngest of five and with my five, there were ten children laughing, living, and learning together. To settle the issue of what the children would call the parents, we decided and became Uncle Robert, Aunt Julia, and Aunt Sharon. I love that she still called me that even though she is an adult. Interestingly, in conversation, my children still refer to her parents as Uncle Robert and Aunt Julia. Honor is never out of style. And though I am now sixty-eight, my Dad’s brother is Uncle Bob to me and when I see him my heart floods with love as I say his name. Yes, honor is never out of style.
Yes, honor is never out of style
My neighbor over at the bookstore, Bev, once again blessed us with an angel food cake. She is the epitome of “the art of neighboring,” which is a new book at the bookstore. Every January she bakes, delivers, and blesses about forty cakes to her neighbors. And that is only a small part of her watching and caring for the neighborhood. What an inspiration and example she is to me.
Talking about food, I decided to reach deep into the back of the freezer last Thursday and pulled out sliced apples for an apple pie just for Dick, though he did share a couple of slices with our house guest last week. This was a “just because” gift to him. Just because he is so special to me.
Well, we have been planning the events for February at the bookstore and on Friday the 8th we’ll have the “Old-Time Gospel Sing-A-Long,” and Saturday the 23rd there will be a workshop with Jane Ault on “The Joy of Prayer Journaling.” Stay tuned for times. We are also planning a monthly “Christian Writers’ Workshop” but haven’t decided on a definite day and time. This will be for Christian writers trying to complete their own works for encouragement, accountability, and critiquing, and moving forward toward publishing. More details will follow.
Dick is trying to repair a leaking faucet in the upstairs bath, has been getting in much writing and reading, as well as shoveling snow. January comes to a close and the sun keeps rising higher in the sky, bringing with it more daylight and hope for the days ahead. May your days be warm and bright, and your hearts whiter than snow. Love, Sharon