Saturday, February 25, 2012

February . . . a red letter month every year since the year we married. 2012 has been no exception. Truly it is a month that focuses on the cycle of life. We celebrate engagements, marriages, birthdays, other special occasions, passing from this life to the next, memorial services and this year we said goodbye to two more special people and the last living family member of my father-in-law. Then came the news of Baby Girl Bates, born within the last two weeks. God is good.

Yesterday was especially meaningful! It was Grandparents' Day at Elisa's playschool, a day we had anticipated for several weeks. She looked like a little angel, sang every song and knew the answers to ten of the first questions in the Children's Catechism. I was so pleased to hear those wonderful affirmations of who God is, what God made and what God does for us.

The second meaningful thing is having Marty and her two boys here for a visit. It has been years since we have celebrated her birthday in person--it was yesterday. So that all the cousins could be here for the celebration, we waited until late this afternoon to open presents and have ice cream and cake. Birthday dinner comes tomorrow--some redfish dish Tommy is creating. It warms a mother's heart to spend time with children and grandchildren, to watch them laugh and play together.

February 2012, especially the 24th, will be long remembered!!

Our weather can't decide whether it will hot or cold. After Marty and the boys arrived Tuesday, she had to go buy some short sets for playclothes. It had been snowing when they left Raleigh and shirtsleeve weather down here. Fortunately, it has cooled off some, but not for long. The only constant is the pollen--yellow dust everywhere and the allergy prone are miserable.

If you follow me on Facebook, you have read about my fall last weekend when I lost my balance, landed primarily on my left knee and flipped into the hot tub. That was one of our cold nights. I have been very stiff, sore and bruised, but am thankful to have been "rescued" quickly and to have not broken anything. I can hear Tom saying for me to be more careful, but what I know is it doesn't seem to be a matter of being careful or not. A beat up body; cancel that; a beat up, aging body "ain't what it used to be." Just call me the "Old Gray Mare."

We have begun the season of Lent, a time in the Christian church when we focus on God's grace and Christ's sacrifice. Some observe by "giving up something for Lent," others choose to make it be a time of prayer and penitence. I simply encourage you all to recognize the unconditional love bestowed on believers; to recognize how unworthy we are; and be thankful for God's grace. Think and pray on these things.

Pastor Margaret

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