(and the crowd goes WILD)
Look what I got from my good pal caprik! A Lemonade Award!
I’m told it’s because I make lemonade out of lemons. And as Nicole Nordeman sings straight from my heart, I don’t mind if you’ve got something nice to say about me. So I accept this award with a grateful heart and with appropriate pride and honor.
Now about those lemons:
I suppose CapriK is referring to the troubled times she her ownself prayed me through as we were getting acquainted through our Bible Study years 1999-2008. I had just given birth to 4th kid when I began that study of Romans and I brought all four of them to the preschool program. You heard me. I had 4 PREschoolers. Well, technically 2 preschoolers, a toddler, and an infant. Those were the years that Oldest would look for the random Kroger gawker and shout out “Yep…we’re all hers.”
In April of that year just after the weekly phone call from my discussion leader…let’s call her God’s Wonderful Blessing or GWB for short…I got another phone call that completely altered the expected path of my life. My sweet daddy had been killed in a car accident while in the funeral procession of a friend of his. He was a college professor at the time and the news of his death rocked the town and our family. I was in complete shock & denial for that 10 hour drive from MI to TN (lemons) but what I was bringing with me was the sunshine of grandchildren to my mama (lemonade) and God was bringing us all together to bask in His love and provision for us. Meanwhile He clearly showed us through the countless folks in attendance at Dad’s services a taste of the legacy that follows the obedience of one of His humble servants. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD for ever. Psalm 23:6
Fast forward one year and 2 months. Mom is not herself. Grief is rough but this is something more, we suspect. Ah, yes. A brain tumor. Cancer. And no partner. Prognosis: not-good (lemons). Mom spends some quality time with us in MI, and ends up receiving treatment in Lexington, KY with Sis & her Hubby while I make many many road trips to KY for family togetherness (lemonade) all relying on God’s strength and care and direction. She bounced back quickly and we had a fabulous surprise 60th birthday for her in remission the same weekend 4 generations participated in the Relay for Life (lemonade).
Fast forward another year+ and the tumor’s back. This time Mom stays in TN with her church and friends and support system. KY Sis is pregant with a child who will need immediate and on-going heart surgeries (lemons, lemons and more stinkin lemons). I am 500 miles away and recently called into positions of church and Bible Study leadership, not to mention wife and mother of 4. Again, God–with that Great Faithfulness of His that is so worthy of singing about morning by morning–somehow guided every step, arranged every trip, and completed ALL the work He called me to do that year. Baby Ella was born in March, died in May and Mom died in Oct of that year (2003) followed by our sweet Mimi’s death at age 98 a few months later. God carried us all way up high to SEE His glory through it all. …and the glory of the LORD appeared to all the people. Leviticus 9:23
So then I stopped to look around. My babies were now all in elementary school. There was a bit of a lull. Until Hubby gets the Pink Slip from H & R Block Financial Advisors in April of 2005. (Enough with the lemons already)! He begins his own business and piddles with some things, but eventually we discover that our time in Michigan is coming to a close. In His amazing provision, God brings Hubby the opportunity that he had described to me back during our dating days in AL…the ability to research and invest for the purpose of furthering God’s work and missions on earth. What a bonus that the office is located on the coast of Virginia! (LEM. MO. NAAAAADE!)
And now I must admit that despite all the apparent blessings and forward postive motion of our lives, I find myself currently once again in lemons mode. Not dramatic After School Special or Lifetime Movie of the Week Lemons. Just the usual every day kind. Missing friends. Aching for family. Starting traditions not knowing which ones will stick. Raising teenagers. Oi. Different lemons, but lemons still. …and lo I am with you always, to the close of the age. Matthew 28:20
So thank you, CapriK for the reminder that there is always hopeful expectation for future lemonade. Actually, the reminder is that I’m not the lemonade maker, but Who is. And He always adds just enough sugar too.
And now my choice for the NEXT lemonade award goes to my awesomely amazingly wonderful cousin at http://www.calledtotaiwan.blogspot.com/ because there’s no life-lemon like the WAITING process for adoption, which she is handling with extreme grace. Hey! That’s the Big Sister’s name! I’m excited for them all. It’s like an extended unestimate-ably long pregnancy. Congratulations, Cuz! I can’t wait to meet her!