Wednesday, March 6, 2019

The Comfort of Light & Memories of Mom

"Light is sown for the righteous, and gladness for the upright in heart."
Psalm 97:11
(KJV)

I love Country Sampler magazine and have been a subscriber for years.  When it comes in the mail, I like to set it aside until I have time to sit down, uninterrupted, so I can really absorb and take it all in.  As I perused through the pages of a particular issue, I came across a picture of a living room where the sun was gleaming in through the window just right, casting its light over the sofa and floor.  The picture just drew me in.  I sat there and looked at it for a long time.  Long-buried feelings rose to the surface, and even though I had never seen that picture before or been in the room that was portrayed in the photo, the effect it had on me was profound and unexpected.  For some unexplained reason, the way the light was shining through the window immediately made me think of Mom and caused me to feel an overwhelming sense of missing her.

It may sound strange, but there is something about afternoon or evening light streaming through a window onto furniture in an inside room that always reminds me of her.  The feeling I get when I see that is hard to put into words.  I feel comfort.  I feel transported back to when I was a little girl growing up.  I feel safe and loved and sheltered and prayed for.  I'm not exactly sure what particular long-ago memories are resurrected or which moment of my life first brought those feelings, but something about that scene just takes me back to a very happy, peace-saturated time, and I could literally stare at it for hours.

Though I could not find the exact Country Sampler picture online, I found the photo of light streaming through a window shown below, and it makes me think of the little apartment Mom lived in when she passed away.  Her kitchen table was right in front of the window, and she and I spent many an hour sitting at a table similar to this one playing Scrabble, doing jigsaw puzzles, eating meals, laughing, and talking.  Seeing this picture makes me long to sit down and visit with her in a room like this just one more time.

Photo by Alexander Harding 
(I tried to make contact to ask permission to share this photo and was unable to, so please know that no copyright infringement is intended, nor will I receive any monetary benefit from sharing the photo here.)

If this really was Mom's kitchen table, I would walk in, and she would give me a sweet, gentle hug.  She would immediately ask me if I was hungry, we would sit and make plans, and I would feel a sense of the sincerely purest welcome I have ever felt anywhere, other than in our own home.  Mom was just like that.  You knew if she had anything, you were welcome to it.  Dad was the same way.  He would give you the shirt right off his back, if you needed it, without thinking twice or batting an eye.  I've seen them both give until they had nothing left to give without ever noticing they were even giving.  I'm sure most people feel this way, but to me, there will never in a million years be anyone in the world like my Mom and Dad.

Childhood in our home was far from perfect.  We had many obstacles.  We moved (at last count) 47 times, mostly without good reason, in my opinion.  It made me extremely insecure, but in spite of all, I would not change a thing because through it all, Mom and Dad were there, and I felt unconditionally loved.  As long as we were together, seated around a table such as the one in the photo above, I knew that everything would be okay.  

I think the reason I am so drawn into a photo of light streaming through a window is because, somewhere in the back of the recesses of my mind, it simply reminds me of home.  It transports me back to when Mom and Dad were here, such a huge part of my daily life.  And as I think of them and long for them and wish for more time on this earth with them, another thought quickly follows my pondering and reminds me of a song written by the late, great Dottie Rambo, one of the greatest Christian songwriters of our time.  I hope you can take time to listen to the words.



Though I will never be able to walk into Mom's kitchen or feel that precious, unique sense of earthly welcome again, there is an eternal home called Heaven where Mom and Dad are waiting.  When I get there, by the grace of God, we will spend the endless ages in the comfort of the Light of the World.  There will be no more good-byes or separations and rainy days are non-existent because our Lord, Jesus Christ, the Son of God is the everlasting Light.  The light of His presence will stream eternally, and there will be no more sadness or brokenness or tears.  Can you imagine a place like that? 

"And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.  And He that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And He said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful."  Revelation 21:4-5

"And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever."  Revelation 22:5

This world is getting darker all the time.  While we are each living "in the meantime," waiting for the completion of our journey home, Jesus calls on us to be keepers of His light here on earth.  "Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.  Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.  Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."  Matthew 5:14-16

If ever there were a time that the world needs to see our good works manifesting the light of Jesus' love, it is now.  If you see a gloomy place, let His light within you burst forth to stream comfort, encouragement, and cheer into that darkened corner.  A genuine smile can light up a whole room.  A kind word can turn someone's day completely around.  "A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver." Proverbs 25:11 Empathy can build a bridge between two conflicting opinions.  Meanness can be quenched with kindness.  Gentle, quietly-spoken words can defuse tension.  "A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger."  Proverbs 15:1

Be faithful and true to the calling of making a positive difference in your world, just like Jesus did.  "How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: Who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with Him."  Acts 10:38

Keep going about doing good.  Bring healing to every hurting soul you possibly can.  Speak life and peace and faith to the depressed, oppressed, wounded, and hopeless.  Keep pressing on and fighting the good fight of faith, and remember this - harvest day will come.  

"And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not."  Galatians 6:9

One day, we will be home, and we will receive our reward.  Jesus will be there, waiting for all of His blood-washed children.  He will welcome us in with open arms and show us the mansion He has been preparing for us all this time.  At last, He will speak the words we have been waiting to hear all our lives, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant:  enter thou into the joy of thy lord."  Matthew 25:21



God bless each on of you dear readers!  I am praying for every one of you right now and trusting God to be near you, supply your every need, fill your life and soul with the fullness of His presence, and inspire you to go out and live your life like Jesus lived His!

"Only one life, 'twill soon be past, only what's done for Christ will last."  Missionary, C.T. Studd

30 comments:

  1. This post spoke deeply to me today, Cheryl, as my MIL, who we had taken care of here at the house for over a year, passed away on February 20. Thankfully, she is with Jesus, and we will one day be reunited.
    Blessings, my friend!

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    1. Oh, sweet friend! I am SO sorry for your deep pain. I surely understand and trust the Lord will continue to hold you close and send the comfort you need. Sending much love and many hugs and blessings to you.

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  2. What a comforting post to read on a cold, cold morning. I am always so blessed when I read your posts. Thank you for sharing some of your nostalgia with me!
    Abigail Joy.

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    1. Abigail, You are so sweet, and you will never know how much I appreciate these kind words tonight. I hope all is well with you, my friend. Sending hugs to you!

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  3. Cheryl what beautiful memories you have of your mom (and dad). It is interesting how sights, sounds and even smells can immediately transport us to a place in our past.

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    1. You are so right. The strangest things can jog my long-buried memories and bring them instantly and unexpectedly to the surface. SO thankful for the memories as they are so comforting to me. Thank you so much for your visit and kind words!

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  4. Cheryl, your precious memories of your Mom stirs up the same memories of my Mom! How I long to walk into her kitchen and be greeted with her hugs and love. I know the feeling sweet friend. I still have my precious 88 year old Dad, he is the best! I love this song by Dottie Rambo. Don’t we long for home?

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    1. Oh, bless your dear heart, Pam! I surely understand those longings, and I don't think they will ever go away. Yes, knowing our loved ones are there in Heaven with Jesus makes it even sweeter to think of going there someday. I am so thankful you still have your dear Daddy, and I trust God will give you many, many more years and happy, good-quality times with him. Sending love and hugs your way, sweet friend!

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  5. So beautiful...
    As you shared a little of your mom and dad my heart strings were tugged.
    Your memories at the kitchen table brought back memories of my own parents kitchen table, and they were special.
    A few years before God called dad home to heaven I would go up early in the morning before my first hospice clients visit and we would have coffee together and visit. Oh my dad looked forward to those times.
    Not knowing dad would only be around a couple more years makes me ever so thankful that I took those times, though very early, but I now have very special memories to look back on and hide in my heart.
    Our days are numbered and we have no guarantee of tomorrow, so we must enjoy and make the best of every moment in this life.

    My thoughts are with you, precious friend, as you miss your mom and dad ♡

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    1. Aw, that is just so sweet, Debbie. So thankful you shared those special memories of time with your Dad with us here. He sounds like such a wonderful man, and I know you deeply cherish your memories of him and also your precious times with your Mom. Thank you so much for your sweet visit and kind words, my dear friend!

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  6. Cheryl. I am speechless today. Your heart knew exactly what my heart needed to read at this moment in time. I have been missing my mom so much over the last few days. Honestly, I don’t know why. She has been gone over half of my life, 29 years now. Whenever I think of her, it’s either in the church kitchen bustling around, helping out or sitting at our kitchen table reading her Bible, working crosswords or just drawing circles. She drew circles to practice her penmanship as she had been taught as a small child. She said it cleared her mind to dry the circles. Oh how I miss her. 29 years old is too young to lose your mother. My dad has been gone for years now also.
    Thank you for sharing this with us today. I think my God every time I remember you. You have spoken such wisdom into my life through your posts and I am forever grateful. What a blessing your friendship is to me.
    Much love, Betsy

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    1. Oh, sweet friend! I am SO sorry you are missing your precious Mom so much. I can surely understand. It is SO sad that you had to lose your dear Mom at such a young age, and it seems like it is all so unfair. Your precious words of encouragement absolutely meant the world to me. I am so deeply moved and grateful for you, your kind words, your friendship, prayers, support, and love. May the dear Lord richly bless and comfort you, my dear, faithful friend!

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  7. I believe every word of this because I know you. You are generous like your mom & dad and things do not hold you; you hold things lightly. Yours is a good reminder that we should bring the light of Christ in a dark world. God bless and keep you, Cheryl. Hugs and lots of love.

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    1. Dear friend! How kind you are, and how deeply your words touched my heart! Thank you again and again for this precious comment, and may the dear Lord bless and keep you, too. Sending much love and many hugs and blessings back to you!

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  8. Oh what beautiful memories you have in your heart and soul. Cherish them as they will bring you comfort and peace at all times dear friend.

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    1. Yes, dear friend, they surely do bring much peace and comfort to me, as I am sure you find the same with your memories of your own dear Mom. I am so thankful for your sweet visit and kind words. Thinking of you and praying for you and sending love and hugs your way!

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  9. Oh Cheryl,I think you can not get any better then you do..This is the best as I sit and cried all the way through this one made me go back to many Precious Memories of Mom and Dad and a lot of Memories were made in our Kitchen..Mother was a wonderful cook and many meals she prepared for saints traveling through the area we called home Many called our home Dunn's Inn..Someone even made a sign to put on our door that said Welcome To Dunn's Inn..I have been missing my Parents so bad all week as the 5th of March would have been their 73 wedding anniversary..If only the wreck had not happened and the feeling I carry each day that I killed My Angel Mom..Oh How homesick can we get before we go HOME!! I know a little how you feel..Memories are so Precious and sometimes they can also be painful..God give you 3 a big hug!!Someday it will all be over but the shouting...Keep Pressing On..This old world is getting worse each day but Heaven is getting sweeter each day..My heart burst with love for you and yours..Love Loads,Elaine

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    1. Dear friend! Thank you ever so much for your kind words and for sharing your heart with us here. I remember one time one of your visitors came to see us right after he left your home (Bro. Mart back before we met you), and he spoke of how much he loved you all and spoke so kindly of you and he seemed to have enjoyed being in your home so very much. I am sure you and your dear parents brought much comfort to so many who came through and ate at your table and spent nights in your home. I know it is so sad and hard to think of those days all being in the past. One day, you will be reunited with all of them feasting for eternity, and the One Who died for you will be there. What a glorious day that will be! I am sending big hugs to you and much, much love. Praying for you!

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  10. This one spoke to my heart, Cheryl. It's easier to relate to someone and something once you've lived through it or are living through it. We'll be living through this the rest of our days...

    What a blessing to have been raised by two such God honoring people. And you carry on the Family tradition.

    And thanks for the warm and brilliant application. Well done, sister.

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    1. You are so right, brother. Thank you for your kind words. To be told I am anything at all like my precious parents is a gift to me. Your encouragement and support is a great blessing. Sending gratitude to you and praying for you.

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  11. Dear Cheryl,
    Oh thank you for speaking of the beauty of this earth that brings the hope of Heaven closer to us. One of my Dad's favorite old hymns was "Suppertime," and that speaks of the same kind of thoughts you have shared here. I too used to love to read "Country Sampler" magazine, and I miss the ways I used to be able to work in my home. But what a blessing to know that the light of Jesus shines here, however much or little I am able to "do." HE is shining always. Thank you for these precious memories of your Mom. You have brought tears to my eyes. Love and Hugs Dear Friend!

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    1. Aw, I remember that old song very well. Mom and Dad used to love that song, too. Now that they are gone, it makes me sad to hear it. I am SO sorry you aren't able to do those things in your home anymore, dear friend. That just breaks my heart. Even though you can no longer do those things, you are making such a beautiful difference in the lives of so many in the Kingdom of God. Your sweet spirit and loving presence and friendship are gifts to us all. Sending much love and many hugs and blessings back to you!

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  12. Such a beautiful tribute and sharing your heart about the light shining in the window, and the precious moments you spent with your mother! Such precious memories you shared of your time with your parents, and how much they invested in your life, so many prayers, so much good memories, and so much love. I love the light when it streams in the window in my home, and especially in the winter, if it has been a long time since we've seen the sun, I'll just stand in the stream, and soak up the warmth. I too long with you for our heavenly home where we will be with the Lord and our loved ones. I'm so very blessed to still have both my parents on earth with me, and I truly treasure every special moment we have together. Thank you sweet friend for this beautiful heartfelt post, and I pray the Lord comforts your heart with thoughts of heaven. I love that song by Dottie Rambo! Blessings and hugs to you :)

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    1. Oh, there truly are SO many precious memories in my heart! We didn't have much in the way of physical possessions, but what we didn't have in that way was made up for in love. No matter what, I always knew Mom and Dad loved me with all their hearts. We were so very close. Yes, dear friend, you are so very blessed to still have your parents on this earth with you. I know you cherish those moments with them, and all you can do is make the very most of the time you are blessed to be with them. I love that song, too. Dottie Rambo wrote so many deeply spiritual, amazing songs. Sending much love and many blessings and hugs back to you tonight!

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  13. Oh Cheryl, how you pulled at my heartstrings with these memories you have of your Mom and Dad. Yes, sights, food, clothes, smells, can remind of us our loved ones that are no longer with us, but waiting for us when we are called home. Thankfully God gave us memories to keep those wonderful thoughts with us. I just made an Irish Brown Bread this morning and thought of how my late beloved hubby and I enjoyed eating it in Ireland.
    Thank you for sharing your thought, songs, and scripture with us. As always, you are remembered in my prayers, too. Love and hugs are sent to you.....

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    1. Yes, sweet friend, how very blessed we are to have memories! I often pray that God will always keep my family and me in our right minds. Memories are very precious, indeed. Oh, bless your heart. I know you miss your dear husband so bad, and making that bread was probably very bittersweet. You will never know how much I appreciate your faithful prayers and friendship. You are special to my heart. Sending much love and many hugs back to you!

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  14. This is a God blessed Spirit directed post, dear sweet sister in Christ..
    For what a joy it will be when my Saviour I shall see,
    when I look upon His face the one Who saved me by His grace,
    What a day of rejoicing it will be!!
    Amen glorious day indeed to see those beloved faces in their glorified bodies ... no more pain or sorrow or parting over there!

    True eternal joy in the the light of the King of Glory!

    Surely we live in sad dark times so we must shine brightly purely for Him.

    May our Light so shine before men that they may see our good works and glorify our Father Who is in heaven.

    Thank you dear sis.. LORD bless comfort and strengthen you in all your service for Him.
    Love in Him
    Shaz in Oz.x

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    1. Oh, you are so right! I love that part of the song above that says, "I can see the family gather, sweet faces all familiar, but no one's old or feeble anymore." Oh, I cry when I hear that part, because I remember the awful suffering my dear parents went through before Jesus took them home. To think of them sitting there around Jesus' feet and to see them with no pain or suffering on their faces just fills my heart with much comfort. You are an encouragement to me, dear Shaz. Thank you so much for your sweet visit and kind words. God bless you and ever be near you!

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  15. Oh Cheryl, this was an absolutely beautifully poignant post! Like you being drawn into the picture in the magazine, I was drawn into your words. The Lord has truly gifted you my sweet friend.

    Oh what a beautiful legacy you have come from!

    And I loved how you tied it altogether to our Heavenly home.

    I always leave your blog uplifted, encouraged, edified and comforted. You are a precious treasure and you mean so much to me.

    Sending you much love,

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  16. Do Cheryl, I'm so so happy that you're still writing. I completely understand the afternoon light reminding you of your parents. I was just thinking the same thing how the afternoon light brings you back to that time before dinner when you were anticipating being together with family. And it reminds me of being a child too and being protected and loved. thank you for helping me connect with my dear parents as you connect with yours. How amazingly blessed we are that Although our parents were not perfect, our parents really loved us. I hope that you never stop writing and blogging. It is so so good to hear your voice in your writing. Love you and praying for you.

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