Monday, December 12, 2016

Sunday School

I would like to welcome everyone for attending this session of Upon My Word.

I love words and it's a good thing I do since I've had to eat more than my share a time or two served with a side of crow.

I love the sound of them.  I love the ring of them.  I love the way they can make me laugh or cry...shudder or shy.

Sometime the most powerful ones are only 2 or 3 letters long.


Sometimes the words get in the way.

Sometimes they can be words of wisdom.

When writing a post, I've made no secret I'm just the typist with Him providing the words and this morning was no different.

I awoke with a single word repeating in my head.  When that happens, I know it's time to sit, type and talk.

Shall we begin?

Today's word is blessing.


[bles-ing] noun
1. the act or words of a person who blesses.
2. a special favor, mercy, or benefit.
3. a favor or gift bestowed by God.
4. the invoking of God's favor upon a person.
5. praise; devotion; worship.

Get all that?  Good.
Let's look at this definition a little closer...shall we?

1. the act or words of a person who blesses.

Sometimes when we look at the blessings in our lives, we I fail to see the small ones.  The ones that sneak up on us, tucked sweetly in a pair of loving eyes and.  The pat on the back, the small words of encouragement, all freely given from a generous heart with nothing expected in return except feeling the joy they brought to someone else and the sound of shared laughter.

Lessons to be learned?

To work at being someone who blesses others and never being so proud as to find ourselves cheating anyone out of the opportunity to be such a blessing.  To reach the point of recognizing all the little blessings that come our way and realizing sometimes just a simple thank you really is enough.

2.  a special favor, mercy or benefit.

Blessings aren't always as obvious as a wrapped present.  Sometimes they are layered in white cotton, tied with heart strings.  Oft-times they climb out of clowns' cars with a burst of imagination, all technicolor and candy apple red.

They unfailingly do things for others...not because they're asked to or because it's expected, but because they want to...need to...have to.  It's in their genetic make-up cases.

Lessons to be learned?

To acknowledge and accept that sometimes a little help is needed.  Realizing we all...from time to time...need a leg up, a helping hand, or a caring shoulder to lean on and remembering sometimes just a simple thank you is enough.

3.  favor or gift bestowed by God.
4. the invoking of God's favor on a person.
5. praise, devotion, worship.

All the blessings in our lives, both big and small, flow from one source.  He provides the people in our lives who make us feel brave when we're scared, beautiful when we're not, and loved when we're at our most unlovable.  He sends them quietly...and sometimes raucously...into our worlds to remind us we're never truly alone.  These seemingly small blessings come with a word, a deed, a gesture to help us along in the day-to-day business of trying to get it right.  They're our business advocates, our cheerleader squad, the ones who want us to succeed and who don't even expect a thank you, but blush when offered one.

Lessons to be learned?

These guardian angels without wings sent by God are the daily reminders of His presence. To miss them is akin to missing Him.  He deserves all the praise, devotion and worship for these blessings...and most importantly...a thank you God is always enough.

I'd like to add one more thing.

I may not always make sense, but given the opportunity...and the words...I may make a lot of non-sense. And bless my soul, I promise up and down to always have the good sense to praise and thank God for each and every one of you.

From my big ol' Texas heart,
God's blessings on all y'all.

Class dismissed.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Bonfires of My Vanities

Recently, while raking and bagging leaves, it suddenly occurred to me why a season is deserving of two names---autumn and fall. For every one leaf I raked, 5 would fall and sadly I paid the price of all that bending over!
My muscles told me that I too had entered a new season in my life. I no longer could spring back when I toted that barge and lifted that bale. My insides might say I was still in the summer of my life, but my outsides screamed ouch! And while I'm still a long way from being in the winter of my discontent, I am no longer a spring chicken and have to admit I am an Autumn in more ways than just my color wheel.
I have morphed into a leaf on a tree. I know it when I look in the mirror and see a woman who's hair is fading and skin has lost it's dewy suppleness. Even my feet have wrinkles and the girls'---Mary Kate and Ashley---no longer stand at attention like good soldiers, but fall to the floor upon my standing upright!
Where just a few years ago, my signature seasoning was a tiny bit salty and a whole lot peppery, nowadays I'm more sagey and thyme-y.
Which brings me to today. With my aching back and screaming joints from going up and down a ladder in preparation for Christmas, I have to accept I no longer am middle aged, but am officially Medicare age.
(Upon my word, I am also officially shocked to admit it!)
But with each change in the season of life, comes changes in perspective and goals. Things that once mattered a great deal to me, no longer hold my attention. Besides, let's face facts. Staying focused was never one of my strong suits. Can you say "squirrel"?
I can't speak for Cat Daddy, but for starters one change I'm making is semi-retiring from the business of junk. And personally, I don't think there's a better time to do it than now.
Why you ask?
Simply put---the business isn't anything like it was 5 years ago.
(And if you find yourself wondering what's changed---just ask and I'll elaborate on another post!)
One change I've already made is Facebook time. I no longer hang out there much. Like me, it too has aged, but unlike me, not in a good way. Where before it was a place to reconnect with people as well as share good things., now it's morphed into something unrecognizable and down right ugly, filled with political diatribes, self-promotion and more than an unhealthy dose of self love. And quite frankly, I don't feel like I am welcomed unless I'm willing to accept the unacceptable.
(Note to self: Remember---not everyone using FB is guilty of the above mentioned evils, but trying to separate the wheat from the chaff is wearing thin. In other words, there still are good people on there, but getting to them takes a whole lotta scrolling!)
I have ventured into Instagram (, but as to how long I'll be there is anybody's guess. I will admit it is fast, but it can be a little bit confusing and I don't work well with confusing! We'll see how long it takes this old dog to learn a few new tricks before giving up!
Another change I'm making is this blog. Before I would ramble on and on about upcoming shows, cool finds and the like. Now instead I'll be talking about whatever God throws into my stream of consciousness. Should you choose to hang around and listen to my answers to life questions, it will be a little like peeking into my psyche!
I truly feel He has led me back to where I started.

As 2016 slides into 2017, I am rekindling my love affair with words and together I hope we can make some beautiful---or at least loud---music together!

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

When I was a little girl, I had the prettiest little pink bike complete with a basket, horn...and training wheels.  I was such a little scaredy-cat, I was quite content with those extra two wheels, but they drove my daddy nuts. He was determined I would learn to ride without them and I was just as stubborn determined I wouldn't!
Daddy knew I couldn't just coast along, relying on them to keep me balanced.  Not on the bike...not in life. day, out came his tool box and off came those wheels.
I begged, whined, cried, pouted, threw a hissy and used just about every trick in my tool box of emotions to stop him, but for once, he was firm. His mind was made up and no amount of wheedling on my part was going to change it.
At first, I wouldn't get on, but somehow he convinced me to. (Might have been the look of exasperation he was wearing that had something to do with it.) As I climbed aboard, he gently told me not to be scared. He'd be holding onto the back and he wouldn't let go until I felt confident.
I still remember vividly, pedaling as hard as my little legs could while looking back over my shoulder and yelling at him "don't let go Daddy." and him laughing back "I won't."
After looking back about a gazillion times and always seeing his smiling face (albeit red from exertion), I started to get the hang of it and with that came a feeling of exhilaration.  Without those two little wheels, I could go faster and believe you me, I liked it. I loved the feel of the breeze on my face and knowing that with Daddy's help, I was getting my first real taste of freedom.  So much so, that after a bit, I forgot to look behind me, so busy was I looking at the world in front of me. Imagine my surprise, when after rounding a corner of our block, I glanced back to see my daddy running to keep up, both hands clasped together over his head in a sign of triumph.
Of course y'all know what happened next. I crashed and burned and still have a tiny scar on my knee to prove it.
As Daddy knelt down to check me over, I didn't start crying. I was too busy fussing at him for letting go. Man alive, I was one mad kid! Picking me and that bike up, he told me he would never have let go if I hadn't been ready to do it on my own.  Falling was necessary to learn.
Looking back, I know he wasn't just talking about riding a bike, but about my future. A man of little words, he was preparing me for the bumps and bruises life hands out. But in his own quirky way, he was also letting me know he would always be there to pick me up when I fell.
When Daddy went to Heaven I was angry with him. Once again, he had let go when I wasn't ready for him to, but God had called him home and he had to let go. Even now I still feel the bittersweet tears welling up, but not because I'm angry. No. It's because even after 27 years, I still don't want to let go of him.
(Image via Pinterest)
I've wrote this for four dear friends who have recently lost their dads. While I know the grief and heartache losing a father brings, I can't begin to imagine what they're personally feeling. Everyone is different and everyone grieves in their own way and in their own time. It doesn't matter if the lost one is young or old, it cuts to the bone.  We feel cheated as the grief overwhelms, numbs the mind, and slashes our hearts into a million pieces. Pieces that one starts to believe can never be put back together.  Even if our dads could live to be as old as Methuselah, it still wouldn't be enough time with them.  We want an eternity with them.
And that is where hope and faith rebuilds what is broken.
God never lets us go...not as long as we believe in Him.
 He is there to comfort where man can't.
He holds us when our own legs can't.
He catches and picks us up when we fall.
He gives us His word time and time again through prayer and in the Bible to never forsake us. Even when the world and events say different.
His ways are perfect even when we don't understand or fight to accept it.
He promises us eternity.
And in that eternity,  just on the other side of the mountain, when the day comes I too must let go, I pray that Daddy will be waiting for me, his hands raised in triumph, laughing and yelling "You did it kiddo! I knew you could!"
Laura, Holli, Patsy and Richard...right now the pain is unbearable, the tears unstoppable.  Having been where y'all are now, I feel helpless for there are no words of comfort I can offer other than the ones God gave me for this post.
What I can and do offer is my prayer for y'all to feel God's love through this. This is what I pray for with all my heart.
I also want you each to know when God gave me these words, He also reminded me that not all the really important people make front page news. Your fathers were important. Not just because they were good fathers, but because each one of them was a unique, fine gentleman. The work and their good works...important. Their mark on the world...indelible. Mighty big men with mighty big shoes to fill. Humble men who never thought those shoes too big for a little girl to dance on or for stepping out to help another. Those footprints will never be erased. Little by little, you'll feel the pieces of your heart gathering into them, healing the ragged edges.
And when that day comes, you'll realize (as did I) it wasn't you he let go of. He just needed both hands to reach for his savior. 
I know they were as proud of you as you are of them and I know this without ever having met them. I simply look at y'all and I know.
I know.
(Image via Pinterest)
From my heart to yours.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016


It's me.
I've been waiting for you.
(Found on Pinterest)
I know my older sister was a little rough on you.  She thought you needed a little toughening up and I see it worked.  You look a little beat up, but all in all...not bad, not bad at all.
Now, I'd love to promise you that I won't be quite so hard, but you and I both know, I can't be trusted.  I won't make promises I possibly can't keep.  What I can promise is that I'll be different with my own twists and turns.
You'll get a new sunrise each morning. It may appear to be a sunrise you've seen before, but it isn't. Not unless you choose to gaze at it with yesterday's eyes.
Daily, without fail, I will give you 24 hours and you, without fail, will foolishly try to stuff some of those minutes into your back pocket for tomorrow. But it won't work. Time is fragile and after sitting on it for too long, it will crumble into tiny pieces.  So tiny in fact, that when you reach into your pocket, all you will find is dust.
And do I really need to remind you the 24 hours you are given are yours, but not yours?  There are obligations to be met, mundane tasks to perform, doctors' appointments to keep, the daily annoyances that is life.  What you see are distractions preventing you from doing what you really want to be doing, but in reality are the nuts and bolts of every day living. And sandwiched in between is being.
And that's the questions you have to ask yourself. What is being and what do you really want to do?
I'm going to let you mull that over for a while, but judging by your showing up here today, I think you already have part of your answer. And for that, my friend, I'm going to give you one extra day this year.
Use it wisely and I'll meet you here (if God permits) tomorrow with a fresh 24.