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Saturday, August 21, 2010

Love Letters


Back in the days before email and texting, my mother and her sisters wrote letters. This is how I got to know my aunts who lived so far away. From her letters, I knew my Aunt Francis was a lovely woman who grew beautiful flowers and wrote poetry. She sometimes pressed flowers from her garden in Jacksonville Florida and included them in her letters to Mom. I also know, at the age of 80, she played Dolly in her community theater's production of Hello Dolly. Knowing only this much about her, she is someone I will never forget.

How will people remember you? Have you considered what your legacy will be?

Countless times I have walked to my mother's bedroom door and caught her on her knees praying. With so many children and grandchildren, Mom was no slouch when it came to praying. She never hesitated to "assume the position" when she came before the Lord. You don't see people doing this much anymore. I myself pray all day, about everything. Most recently, when the plumber left the gate open and my dog was out for some time before anyone noticed. After searching everywhere for him, I stood in my driveway and whispered, "Dear Jesus, please take care of Darnell and bring him back to me safely". Seconds later I heard the rattle of his collar, looked up and saw him running toward me. "Thank you, Jesus!" I sometimes sing Jesus Loves The Little Doggies to Darnell, but don't tell anyone. They may want to put me away.

The thing about prayer is, like all things in heaven, they are eternal. Mom's prayers for her children are still covering us today.

I gave my mother several journals over the years hoping she would write something she needed me to know. I wanted her to write me a letter or something. She never wrote a word. After being diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's the first thing she lost was her speech. Day after day she sat with her Bible in her lap. She would look at me as though she wanted to tell me something. What is it, Mom, I wondered. When she died I asked Daddy if I could have her Bible. He gave me a shiny new one still in the box and I told him I wanted the one she read. He gave it to me and after some time, I opened it. There was my letter, bookmarked and underlined. John 14: 1-3, Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.

Mom left a legacy of prayer. A brave woman to the end, she cherished the letters from her God. They comforted her and gave her peace.

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A wife, mother, and spoiler of small dogs, I grew up in a small West Texas town, with my eyes full of sand, and my heart full of joy.


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