Complete

and in Him, you have been made complete, and He is the head over all rule and authority;

Colossians 2:10 (New Am. Standard)

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My beautiful Ladybug as a young woman dressed in her Sunday best.

Edited from thoughts I put on my phone app October 10, 2018:

I know from a scientific standpoint that it probably wouldn’t make sense to say that a person with Alzheimer’s could, in their final days, be cognizant or whole again. But, I would like to think that the week we spent with Mom in Hospice that she did have an understanding of the things we were telling her and even though she wasn’t completely alert that somehow she was comprehending.

I know when Dad told her he loved her she responded and tried to tell him she loved him.  I know when my brother’s family were with her she tried her best to sit up and engage with them.   And, when my Aunt Jenny’s name was mentioned she reached up her arms as if to hug her.

I know that she knew when my sister was by her side. It wasn’t until after my sister arrived that she slipped deeper into a sleep state, so I know she was waiting for my sister.  We all had moments with her and I know she was comforted to hear our words of love and affirmation.

The day I was telling her how beautiful she was and how I  was going to see that people read her poetry I know she perked up and understood what I was saying.  I also told her that I was going to do my best to see that all of her family made it to heaven. I feel that she was not just hearing me, but that she was understanding the way she would have before the Alzheimer’s. I think she was fully aware.

I just need to mention that even in the final stages of Alzheimer’s she responded well to us but there were facts missing.  She recognized love, and that we were familiar, but she didn’t always know exactly who we were.  There were many things we’d talk about, but complete comprehension of facts and details was missing.  Those are the things I think God restored to her that final week.  Knowledge of exactly who we were and full comprehension of what everything meant.   Those details that made the love even more special to her.

I know that you can do all things; no purpose of yours can be thwarted. Job 42:2 NIV

Science knows a lot, but there is much not known as well.  God knows all things including what science doesn’t know. With him all things are possible and his purpose will be accomplished. So, to me, it makes sense that in my Mom’s final days he could restore her mind and give her those moments of clarity as her loved ones told her their final goodbyes. I’d like to think it was God’s gift to all of us.

She is now completely restored and basking in the Love of her heavenly father. And that is the greatest gift of all.

Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good. His love endures forever. Psalm 136:1 NIV

Grace for the journey,

Teresa

Come back tomorrow for more of the journey?  Just a reminder that I usually post later in the day. Clicking on the ladybug graphic will take you to the first page in this series with links to the daily posts. Thanks for reading!

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Prompted By Worship

Yesterday my husband led a congregation from his hometown in Worship.  I was privileged to be a part of that service.  Because it was truly beautiful worship. We were welcomed with such love and kindness.  Peace was felt within those walls.  Heaven came down and the chords that rolled off those ivories was simply stunning.

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Rocky will be the first to tell you that the music belongs to God.  It is a gift and he has always known this truth.  He has studied, taken lessons and practiced more hours than we would ever be able to count and it shows.  Clearly, it shows, but it is only because God has given the tools and provided the means for him to be good at what he does.

Last year he fulfilled a lifelong dream and graduated with his DMA in piano performance, and although he has the honor of having Doctor in front of his name now, it’s not a title he flaunts.  I will however, tell you about it because I am proud of him, but not just because he received his DMA.

I am proud of him because he is one of the most Christ-like people I know.  He is humble and kind to others.  He shares his gift from the heart.  He shared with me that as a young man, even before he became a Christian, he knew he wanted to use his music for God.  And he does.  He has used his music to minister to others in many churches, nursing homes and senior centers as well as weddings and funerals.  He has used his skill to teach others.

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When he plays it is like getting a glimpse into heaven.  I’ve seen how God uses his music to touch the lives of others. I’ve seen people moved to tears when he plays. I’ve seen faces light up when they hear a favorite song.  I’ve watched as families look to each other and nod their heads when a certain song is played. I’ve seen the comfort his music has brought to those suffering.  I’ve felt the presence of God move through a room full of people with such sweetness that you just wanted the doors of heaven to open.

I’ve also seen the generosity of others in supporting his ministry and it is truly humbling to know that they believe in what he is doing.  They recognize that he simply plays and allows God to have the glory.  Yesterday, after playing with such passion and beauty, he ended the time of worship with My Tribute.  As I listened to his fingers play the notes with such feeling, the words of the song, written by Andrae Crouch, came to mind and I couldn’t help but think what a fitting song to end with, because I know that Rocky knows that all the glory belongs to God.

The glory of God was evident in yesterday’s worship.  Many people mentioned it on the way out the door and over lunch.  For me, to sit in such a sweet space and to witness such beauty in worship and to see how God was using my husband to minister to us, was truly a wonderful awe-inspiring experience.

It reminded me, once again, of my sense of place in the world and how God is the author of where that place is.  Yesterday, it was in a church in a small town being ministered to by my husband and being reminded that it is all because of the blood of Jesus.  Nothing But The Blood Of Jesus. (click the link to hear him play)

Staring out over Cave Run Lake Sunday afternoon after the concert.
Staring out over Cave Run Lake Sunday afternoon after the concert.

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 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
    in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
    to the glory of God the Father. Philippians 2:10-11

Worshiping in Grace,

Teresa

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Favorite Artists / Songs I – 31:16

My favorite Artists / Songs list is somewhat eclectic.  Music touches a place deep in my soul.  Once that connection has been made, then the song is timeless for me. Some songs touch a far away place that is haunting, others live closer to home and speak to me in the day to day patterns of life. Some of it is just for fun, or brings back a memory.  I have broken this list into two categories Non-Christian (which is pretty much pop, country and rock) and Christian.  Today is the Non-Christian list.

1.  Celine Dion.  Love her music.  Pretty much anything she does.  If I had to choose a favorite it would be Power of Love.

2.  Elton John.  Again. Love his music.  Pretty much anything, although I tend to prefer the older stuff.  Favorite? Do I have to choose a favorite?  OK  Sad Songs  and Honky Cat and of course I have to include Crocodile Rock and one more – Candle in the Wind

3.  Linda Ronstadt. Most of her stuff.  Favorite, probably Blue Bayou

4.  The Eagles. Don Henley. Greatest Hits.  All of them.  I’ll pick Desperado

5.  Bob Seger (not necessarily all of his stuff) but, I love Old Time Rock and Roll or this live version

6.  Rod Stewart (again, not everything – he was pretty risque when I was growing up)  but, I love his gravely voice and one of my favorites is Forever Young

7.  Bryan Adams – love his voice.  This should probably have been at the top of the list along with Celine.  It, along with Power of Love are my favorite love songs.  Ever. Have You Ever Really Loved A Woman

6.  Sting and The Police.  Every Breath You Take

7.  I love this combination of Bryan Adams, Rod Stewart and Sting  All For Love

8.  Anne Murray – love, love her voice.  Low and smooth. We used one of her songs at our Wedding.  You Needed Me  It was 1984. OK.

9.  The Judds and Wynona – you get two here.  One of theirs and one of hers.  Grandpa Tell Me About The Good Ole Days  and No One Else On Earth

10.  Elvis.  Everything. I’ve never heard anything I didn’t like.  I have several favorites, but I am linking to only two.  Jailhouse Rock and Suspicious Minds

11.  Clay Aiken – my favorite American Idol contestant. Ever. I just love his voice – soulful, reaches deep.  He should have won.  Loved his version of Without You

12.  Duffy – like her voice -it is edgy and different.  Favorite song of hers – Mercy

13.  Billy Ray Cyrus (I can’t really explain it or help it) He is a Kentucky boy.  I like a lot of his songs.  Of course the obvious choice is Achy Breaky Heart – This one is a little more serious – She’s Not Cryin’ Anymore

14.  Karen Carpenter.  Love the voice – so many great songs – hard to pick just one, but I’ll choose Rainy Days and Mondays or maybe Superstar

15.  And no list would be complete without The Archies singing Sugar Sugar

16.  Or, Jeannie C Riley singing Harper Valley PTA

It’s been fun finding some of my favorites that I haven’t listened to for a while.  I could add more and I’m pretty sure a favorite Artists / Songs list is never really complete or even static as things change.  So, here is hoping you will be inspired to think of some of your own favorites.  I’m not sure what insights this list gives you about me, if any, but feel free to comment!

Teresa

Love Speaks in Everyday Moments

Today I had a date of sorts with my husband.  It wasn’t planned.  He needed an ink cartridge and one was not to be found in the small burg in which we live, so a trip to the neighboring college town was in order.  I decided to go with.  So, it was an impromptu date.  I’m calling it a date because:  1.  It was just the two of us and 2. It involved our new favorite Italian Restaurant for lunch.

It wasn’t romantic – we didn’t  hold hands or kiss or flirt or anything like that.  We were just together.  The fact that it was just the two of us was not all that remarkable since we don’t  have kids and often it is just the two or us.  The fact that we ate lunch out doesn’t really make it all that special either since we tend to eat out often.  And, even the fact that we were together was not all that remarkable, because, these days we spend a lot of time together since neither of us leaves home on a regular basis to go to work.   So, maybe it wasn’t really a date.

That doesn’t matter.  What matters to me is that we are together.  We still count.  We  go with the ebb and flow of life with each other and even if we’re not officially on a date we can still enjoy each other’s company.  We have settled into a rhythm of life.  We can know what the other is thinking without saying a word.  Sometimes in the silence of just being together there is magic.  Being together is like being wrapped in a blanket on a cold winter’s day.  You feel safe, cozy, protected and blessed.  Your eyes meet, you smile and you know your world is right. You know that love speaks in the everyday moments of life and even an ordinary trip for an ink cartridge is something special.

 

And every time he plays, I fall in love all over again.

Loving in Grace,

Sadie