Sunday, October 21, 2012

Fourty Eight Years

At 17 how could we know 48 years would pass so quickly. Oct. 20th, today, this young looking man and I got married in the oldest church in Illinoios. I am sure lots of advice was given to us since we were only 17 but for life of me I can't remember what it was. Oh yeah I do remember they said it would not last.  God was at work even then.  
Ten years into our marriage we still did not have children. Ace had a massive heart attack at age 27 which was quite a wake up call on our lives. God would use this to bring his prodigal son around along with the birth of our first child after 12 years of marriage, a little girl, Tara Jo. Four more years passed so quickly and along came our son Jared.  

God was working in our lives to bring us to him and through an agressive soul winning church we got invited to pay them a visit.   It was exactly what we needed, 16 years after our wedding Ace came back to the Lord and I got saved. 

Of all the change since getting married this was the biggest one...God always has a plan for His children.

We became active in our church, growing, learning how to walk as a child of God should.  The church we attended was known as the getting saved church so we learned early how to take our Bible and lead someone to the Lord.  Twenty two years into our marriage Ace left his job with TWA and we went full time in the ministry.  Life was taking on some drastic changes but God was not through with us.

Missions was something our church kept before us and there was nothing we like better then having  what ever missionary  was visiting our church over for a meal.  It was exciting to hear their stories and pray for them, never thinking God was going to ask us to do that.  I mean we were doing our part right there in good old Kentucky for the kingdom of God. 

Somewhere in our 27th year of marriage God was going to send us on a different path.  I remember Ace telling our Tara he was going to show her the world.   True to his word August 1991 we left for Bolivia, South America to serve with New Tribes Missions.  Those were great years, our kids were with us, we were serving over seas, life was good. 

There are too many details to list of our 48 years together.  God has allowed us to serve in two countries and just this past year, Sept. 2011 we returned home to serve in a stateside ministry with New Tribes.  Which brings us back to this Oct. 20th, 2012...anniversary time.   As you can tell from the picture we did not have a big wedding...simple...and we have remain simple people. God delight in using simple people to tell His story.

The question always comes up,  would you do it again?  Yes is alway my answer but not at 17.  No one is mature enough to take on a marriage at that age.   There is some value in allowing yourself a few years to go to college or just work and learn a little about yourself before taking on the responsibility of marriage.  Some of those years were hard ones, still not sure how we made it through them.  But here we stand...48 years later and the only advice I would give anyone getting married is to get to know the Savior first, learn to walk with Him first, learn to follow His lead, learn about His love for you first. 

In two years we will celebrate our 50th and I want a party, a big one and you all are invited.  So put the date on your calendar in bold print and Lord willing I will see you there.



Wednesday, October 17, 2012


(I posted this sometime in 2011. Then I accidently deleated it but recently found a rough draft tucked inside a file with no title.  As I read, the memory of the day in Wal-mart came back to me instantly.  Tears once again filled my eyes as I remembered  the sobs of this woman, how they shook me clear to my soul.  The bible says in Proverbs, Hope deferred makes the heart sick, meaning I think depressed, lose of hope.  Our God  is a God of hope and delights in using us weak and frail vessels to bring hope to others. There are so many out there needing a hug or kind words and prayer.  God help me to not pass them by. )

I only stopped for a few things and  apples were not even on my list. Trying to decide whether to purchase green or red ones I couldn’t help but notice the frail woman trying to get those impossible thin plastic bags open to put her apples in.  She was dropping as many as she was putting  in.  Her hands were shaking and she was muttering to herself words I could not understand but it was clear she was troubled


My heart went out to her since I have a mother her age and I am fastly approaching older.   I stepped up and offered to help, then I see her tears. As I bagged her apples words begin to pour from this small slightly bent woman.

She said, I cannot drive myself anymore so my husband has to take me everywhere and he is not patient.  He was waiting for her in the car and she was worried he would be upset for it was taking her longer then usual. 
He had cancer and her  health was failing fast under the strain of the stress. To make it worst she said, he does not care about my health issues.  

Nobody understands she said, with huge tears continuing to fall.  By then I had my arms around her trying to hold her shaking body together.
This verse came to me as I listened to her sob and lamenting out of  a broken heart.   Matthew 14:27 Take courage , it is I, do not be afraid.

I took ahold of  courage and ask her if I could pray for her, right there in the apples, still trembling she said, yes.   I prayed for God to ease her anxiety, calm her, soften her husband, for their health issues and the God who loved her would become real to her.     

Tears was  streaming down both our faces as we hug for a long time.   She thanked me several times and before I could talk more she said, I must go, he is waiting for me.  Walking away she turned back to say  thank you one last time.

 All it took was a few minutes and God reached down from heaven and poured hope into a frail, distraut woman standing in the middle of the apples in Wal-Mart.  

"The feeling of hopefulness sometimes comes from someone helping us. Think back to a time when you had lost hope. Many times we regained our optimism because someone gave us a helping hand." Catherine Pulsifer, from Poem for Hope

I may never see this woman again but I am so glad God placed her in my life that day to remind me to reach beyond my world.   

       Can you recall a time when someone reached beyond their world to your
                 hurting world with a hug, a kind word, a word of prayer?    

This post is link to "Tell Me A Story"

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Servants Ministry

Ministry is:

Giving when you feel like keeping

Praying for others when you need to be prayed for

Feeding others when your own soul is hungry

Living truth before people even when you can’t see results

Hurting with other people even when your own hurt can’t be spoken

Keeping your word even when it is not convenient

Being faithful when your flesh wants to run away