I’ve held a few signs in my life.

The one I treasure most said,

“Last day of chemo!”

and I remember grasping it so proudly alongside my husband and son who a year later lost his fight with cancer.

Signs definitely speak.

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And our family definitely had a message to deliver to the world on that special day.

A few years later, KLove asked for photographs of people showing how they were living proof of God’s love and power in their lives, so I had a friend take a photograph of me sitting between our two children’s tombstones.

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I wanted the world to know that with God you can face the unimaginable and somehow smile again.

I guess that’s what signs are for……………………..being heard without opening our mouths.

And I’m all for people being heard.

Women

Men

Children

Abused

Neglected

Broken

Confused

Lost

Mistreated

Marginalized

Forgotten

and even Famous

Freedom rings in a country where we’re free to march down any street we choose,

carrying a sign declaring any type of conviction.

I really wouldn’t want it any other way.

I wouldn’t want to live, like many do around the world, in fear of sharing my thoughts openly and honestly.

I’m thankful for a country where all voices can be heard…………loudly and clearly.

And I would never criticize the masses of women who felt compelled, for whatever reason, to join together to make their voices known.

Some marched carrying handmade signs.

Others marched by using their keyboards.

Whether you chose a street or a form of social media to express your views during the past week,

you had a place to freely say whatever was on your mind.

And there was plenty said on all sides of every issue.

Street marching

and

Keyboard marching

They’re one and the same to me.

I love words, and I find great power in them.

But lately, I’ve found words exhausting.

Too many voices and too many signs and too many posts have turned the beauty of the human language into an alphabet soup of chaos………………..

and I don’t really know what anyone wants anymore.,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

Except for everyone else to be quiet and listen to them.

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So, I’m choosing to walk……………….

not march.

I’m choosing to put one foot in front of the other as I move from my bedroom to my kitchen for my morning coffee

and as I leave my home to teach

or take photographs

or sit with female inmates in jail…………….

Women who took their freedom too far and now long for someone to help hold them back from everything they thought they needed or wanted.

I’m choosing to walk not march because I don’t feel compelled to pressure anyone else to make my world better than I can make it myself by loving deeply and living honestly.

And as I think of my own daughter, daughter-in-law, and granddaughter and the many dreams I have for each of them………………………

I feel very content walking through life with them rather than marching down streets for them.

I feel extremely powerful walking through my days rather than marching,

because every single morning I wake up and dig deep into the tiny little part of this great big world God has made my own………

and in that digging, I hope I plant seeds along the way that continue to grow into beautiful things long after I’m gone.

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If God can bring good from all things (and He promises He will),

I hope He takes this past week filled with so many words being carried high and spoken loudly and causes us all to look deep within ourselves and ask,

“What difference am I really making on this planet?”

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Maybe that’s it.

Maybe that was the driving force for this weekend’s movement.

Maybe everyone just wants to be sure they play a pivotal role in this crazy thing called life.

I’ve read a lot of news articles and looked at even more photographs from the past few days,

and I admire people who traveled far and wide to join what they believed they needed to join in order to be heard.

Who am I, as a blogger, to say their voices don’t matter?

But for me, I’ll stay off the street and in my own little town doing what I can to make the world a better place one friend-to-friend conversation at a time.

I’ll vote wisely and pray for my leaders.

-no matter how I may feel about them-

and thank God daily for a country where I don’t have to hide my beliefs or fear being imprisoned for speaking my heart.

March if you need to……………..

but never take lightly the significance you make when you also choose to walk.

Even youths grow tired and weary,
    and young men stumble and fall;
but those who hope in the Lord
    will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
    they will run and not grow weary,
    they will walk and not be faint.

Isaiah 40:30-31

Our daughter recently said, “Yes!” to her boyfriend’s proposal of marriage.

The sign they held spoke to the beauty of that moment.

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May this be the sign we all hold high as we walk into the rest of 2017.

And in holding it, I hope we’ll see…………………….

“Love and faithfulness meet together;

and

righteousness and peace kiss each other.”

Psalm 85:10

 

Oh Happy Day!!!!!!!!!!

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I miss the dusty roads of my grandparent’s farm in Oklahoma.

My roots are forever there, woven into and wrapped around the glistening pebbles, sandy soil, and colorful wildflowers covering every surface.

In some ways, it feels like a hundred years since I ran through a sprinkler in my grandpa and grandma’s yard, played the piano in their living room, or threw horseshoes under the big tree beside their house.

In other ways, it seems like yesterday.

I can feel the breeze, hear the distant coyote, and smell the fresh-out-of-the-garden tomatoes.

I miss those days, and I miss my grandpa and grandma even more.

But there’s something about realizing Tim and I are now in their shoes that, like a magnificent sunrise, can easily take my breath away.

We are now MiMi and Pops.

We are now mom and dad to adult children.

We are the “home” they don’t live in every single day.

We are the “home” they come back to.

And the memories we make now are the only ones our grandchildren will carry with them long after we’re gone.

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I wonder if my grandma ever thought she was creating a memory for me as she leaned against her kitchen sink peeling potatoes or stood by her freezer rolling out homemade noodles.

I wonder if my grandpa ever considered the legacy he would leave as he allowed me to get up early and ride through the fields with him checking fences and feeding cows.

Social media was so far removed from my little-girl days that most of my memories are captured in my heart rather than snapshots.

I carry vivid images deep in my soul, though, and they mean more to me than an Instagram or Facebook post ever could.

Maybe the creating of memories isn’t as much about what we’re doing in any given moment as it is about who we’re doing things with.

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This morning Tim hollered up the stairs,

“Check out the sunrise!”

I almost missed this spectacular glow just outside my window.

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As I ran downstairs and snapped this photo before the moment was gone,

I couldn’t help but think of life and the special moments I almost miss.

 I opened my blog for the first time in such a long time,

because I wanted to remind myself of something I can so easily forget.

Like a beautiful sunrise, life is such a fleeting gift.

We have brief moments when all feels right.

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We find ourselves standing with the people we love most,

and we realize in that very moment that every tear we’ve shed,

every laugh we’ve shared,

every funny memory we’ve experienced

as well as every heartbreaking one has brought us to this day……………

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and made us each who we are.

The pain.

The joy.

It’s taken all of it to shape us.

Mark Twain once said,

“To us, our house was not unsentient matter — it had a heart, and a soul, and eyes to see us with; and approvals and solicitudes and deep sympathies; it was of us, and we were in its confidence, and lived in its grace and in the peace of its benediction.”

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I guess that’s my prayer this morning.

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That I would forever do everything within my power to keep our home alive even when it’s incredibly quiet.

The kids pile in from time to time and every bed is filled…………along with every couch………….and the kitchen table becomes a place of games and laughter.

Then I blink and they’re all gone.

The dishes once again stay clean and the beds stay made.

Like a barefoot journey on a cold morning to snap a photo of a spectacular sunrise,

I want to do whatever it takes NOT to miss the memories of my family being home.

I want to soak up their voices and the feeling of having their arms wrapped tightly around me.

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I want my kids to know this little place is always here.

I don’t ever want them to forget they have a home that misses them.

And when I’m gone, I hope they’ll come back to the roads of Kentucky and the roots of their childhood and know love is still here……………….growing in the trees and blooming in the flowers……………….and I hope every time they leave, they’ll carry that same love with them wherever life takes them next.

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Today, I don’t know if your house is full or empty,

but I hope you’ll take a minute to breathe in the memory of yesterday’s love and then exhale that love or an even deeper kind-of love into the lives of everyone you meet.

Like a sunrise, the beauty of each moment in our life passes by so quickly.

I’m praying something gets your attention today just like Tim got mine this morning.

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The whole earth is filled with awe at your wonders;

where morning dawns,

where evening fades,

you call forth songs of joy.

Psalm 65:8

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Let’s not miss the wonder of today.