Dear God, Thank you for our food, shelter and clothing. For so many have little. Thank you for family and friends who love and help us. For so many have little. Thank you for everyday luxuries and simple pleasures. For so many have little. But most of all thank you for your unfailing love. For your love blankets all of us. Amen.
It’s been one year since I’ve been blogging consistently, to call myself a blogger. So, I was quite surprised when my new blogger friend Kathryn Chastain Treat at Allergictolifemybattle bestowed me with the “WordPress Family Award.”
I am humbled. I often wonder who reads these posts, and have learned that frequently readers stop by without leaving comments or pressing the like button. Just last week, I bumped into a Facebook friend who said, “I noticed you started a blog, but I have not time to read.” A few months ago, I was chastened for not posting, and then chastened for something I said. I love it, because I’m a blogger.
So, this award shows a connection that bloggers share through their words and actions, making us more than a community of bloggers, but a blogging family. I have been following Kathryn’s blog for months. She has opened my eyes to my own mother’s allergic reactions to life. At one time, I thought it was mental, mostly imagined. But Kathryn has confirmed my mother’s allergies, allowing me to even reconsider how I can live a healthier lifestyle. One way, I’m tossing all my plastics and buying Pyrex—getting rid of toxins. Kathryn and I also share being list-makers. It’s nice to meet someone obsessed with list.
Ironically, while reading Pastor Mike’s post on Mustard Seed, I noticed he gravely opposes lists, unless it’s a prayer list. It’s still a list.
As part of the award, I, too, must nominate 10 other bloggers according to the rules below. And here’s why, I’ve chosen nine out of the ten. Jen offers writing inspiration, Sharla is the first blogger friend, Joan reminds me of my faith walk, Pastor Mike has given me hope after reposting one of my prayers and others hit the like button, Morning Story and Dilbert and Wade show me that God has a sense of humor; therefore, I should laugh more. And Yahobahne writes awesome poetry and open letters, while the writers of Pages from Stages shares different stages of life, and finally Marlene reminds me that I’m writing a story for God’s glory.
1) Display the award logo on your blog; 2) Link back to the person who nominated you; 3) Nominate 10 others you see as having an impact on your WordPress experience and family; 4) Let your 10 Family members know you have awarded them; and 5) That is it. Just please pick 10 people who have taken you as a friend, and spread the love.
- Kathryn – allergictolifemybattle.wordpress.com/
- Jen – http://jenowenby.wordpress.com/
- Sharla- http://catnipoflife.wordpress.com
- Joan http://jokondotnet.wordpress.com
- Pastor Mike–http://mustardseedbudget.wordpress.com
- Morning Story and Dilbert http://morningstoryanddilbert.wordpress.com
- Wade- http://laughoutloudloveourlord.com
- Yahobahne “Designs”http://his4glorydotcom.wordpress.com/
- Cherie, Julane, Sara, Susan http://pagesfromstages.wordpress.com
Now that I had arrived safely in Elba, Alabama, the next stop: Florala for a Friday night event, and then a Saturday drive to Panama City Beach. I had no clue of the distance between Elba, Florala and Panama City Beach, nor did I have hotel reservations in Florala when my mother said that’s too much driving.
At 4 p.m., we set off to reach our destination before nightfall sans a place to rest our head. Additionally, we waited for my cousin in Florala to call us back with directions and an address.
In the parking lot of Subways, I checked my telephone for hotels. One night stays, pricey. Finally my cousin called with directions. I asked her about hotels and she paused.
“I didn’t know you had planned to stay,” cousin Hazel said. “I would invite you to sleep at my house, but I haven’t cleaned and I’m leaving early in the morning or Pensacola.“
I heard the trepidation in her voice. As the event planner, she needed to arrive at six, two hours before her guests. She said, “Come on, I’ll arrange a place for you to stay.”
“She’ll arrange a place at friend’s house,” my mother predicted.
“Maybe, she’ll let us sleep on the floor,” I said.
“It’s an adventure,” my mother said. “God’s in control.”
“I did fly first class, unexpectedly,” I said.
We set off standing on God’s promise.
I’ll be a personal guide to them, directing them through unknown country. I’ll be right there to show them what roads to take, make sure they don’t fall into the ditch. These are the things I’ll be doing for them— sticking with them, not leaving them for a minute” (Isaiah 24:16, The Message).
Five minutes across the Florala city line, my cellphone rang. Hazel asked our location, afterwards she instructed me to pull over. She parked next to us. After family hugs, she said, “Check-in is at 6:30 p.m.”
We followed Hazel to her home. A beautiful home with room enough to house us. Again we sat and chatted about distance relatives. As a writer, Hazel and my mother told stories about family members that were characters in novel, a family saga. This reminded me of words of a famous author, “A good writer has a storyteller in the family.”
What a blessing to sit with two wise women with family stories, that I could fictionalize in a novel sequel.
At 6:20p.m., we headed to Lake House Bed & Breakfast. The owner welcomed
and escorted us to one king size bedroom and one queen on the first floor.
“The house is empty tonight,” he said. “Check out is 11 a.m. And what time would you like breakfast?”
I met Hazel in the hallway and asked if we should pay now or in the morning. She simply replied, “All has been taken care of. Just enjoy.”
My second God-sized gift in less than 48 hours.
Two hours after lounging in the sitting room, sipping tea, Hazel returned to the Lake House and gave us a tour of Florala. Then pulled into the driveway of another cousin whom we hadn’t seen in a year.
I knocked on her door. She opened it and screamed, “My cousin from New York.” She slammed the door.
An impromptu family reunion; plans only God could have ordained.