Thursday, January 8, 2009

Theola...the conclusion of Chapter One

Chapter One continued...

Theola, I like that about myself most of all even when I don’t recall others they remember me seemingly so fondly. If we met before it had to be from work somehow. I have no life beyond that. At least that makes it a little easier. This mystery gives me something to think about other than my injured feelings and the controversy I have to debate when I get back to Trumann. This day in the garden has been so healing to me. I leave here refreshed. I am so grateful that I was allowed to pick my own foods like that the kindness that Mr. Roscoe showed me was, well it was needed.

Sometimes it is like I’m married to the hospital. I have awakened to a much harsher reality. It is not “the dream”. Malcolm was my dream, he is gone now and that life is over. This is more a lasting nightmare of fatigue for me. The hospital is just the grounds where the people come to gain their well being, and fix the devastated places in their lives. I wonder if maybe being a Chaplin is just too relentless for me. So much suffering and I have been so constrained in the way in which I am aloud to comfort. I just can’t stand the business premise of it anymore God.

“Oh God, What am I to do with this trial?”

I must have employment to be able to feed and shelter myself. Malcolm’s insurance and disability only covered so much until I retire. Do I have to suffer, to endure, during this time of my life? Life on my own is so hard. I am so grateful that he did all that he could to secure me. This world is so costly. It was once that a little would go a long way but now what seems a lot is truly only a little when it has to last a long time. I must be wise. I must protect myself from the dangers of burn out, of poverty and of losing heart. I want to make sure I have some benefits and coverage for health care. To do this I have to find a way to work out these problems with Egan. I wish that he could gain from this too. If all the patients and staff profit it will be a great accomplishment.

The night came in clouds and the rain was a sheet of slate blue as I inched my way back to the cabin. I began that slow drive up that narrow two-lane slice of forest fudge. My mind was full of so many considerations. The turn off into the cabin is so hard to catch sight of. I am so glad that no one is following me on this wet dark night. I saw the marker, and at a snail's pace turned onto the dirt. The decline of the road caused a little ford to flow across a few feet in off the main road. Still aware of the possible torrent of rain at the higher elevation and a little unsure about crossing it I looked upstream to make sure that the flow was not rising too rapidly. So I held my breadth and passed through. I may not get out of this drive in the morning if this rainy weather were to continue. I was so glad to pull up the incline into the shelter of the big blue spruce tree next to the overhang of the cabin. The wind was blocked by it until I got onto the porch. The lighting flashed and just a moment later bangs the thunder! This storm is right overhead. I saw what Dwight spoke about. The ‘steel’, it was a triangle and steel dowel hanging off of the porch eave. The lightening reflected off of it and had caught my attention. I had the key in the bolt and gloom began to set. I fought the loneliness I felt and remembered that Malcolm told me I would never ever be alone. He said that God is my friend and as we were friends yet God he said would always be a much better friend to me. The rain should die down soon I hoped. It is so cold in this cabin. Now that I am here I wonder how long it will be until I am able to get this place warmed up. Grabbing the blanket from off of the chair and wrapping me round I hugged myself and smiled thinking of my forever friends. I fled out to the sedan and got the wood. How I wished I had more than one bundle of it. I ran back and dropped it on the porch. I braced myself and ran back to the car to get the bag of groceries. I carried the sack as it all but fell out of my arms as I was running. If this is all the wood I have I may be in for a cold night.

On the drive in I thought of the chicken and rice. The meal was something I was truly looking forward to. I reached into the sack to get a carrot to snack on while I secured the fire. Washing it in the pump sink was a real adventure. This thing is on a well. It pumps. At least the handle had loosened up from the use this morning. Man have I stepped back in time tonight. Washing off the carrot I snapped the beautiful long greens from the end it is so crispy! I was about to bite into it when I realized I had company. Life gives life. It was a praying mantis. I flashed back to my early childhood to my Dear Nana Oona it was she who had told me I had the gift. That’s what she said, the Gift. Remembering her way, I thought back to the many lessons of the earth so very long ago. They had all but vanished and now again those lessons whisper to me. Come alive again to your gift. It was Nana Oona who told them all that I was heaven sent. Fathers name was Cole but Mother insisted that I forget the old ways. She said people don’t want to know who you were, so “don’t tell anyone what that dear old woman told you”. You are a Cole that is who you are. Daddies kept us all like doves in a cage. He never learned the ways of my Nanas people. He had no warrior heart or adventure to fight he was just a keeper of the doves. He always admired momma’s beauty but forgot to pursue her. He never shared any adventures with her. Her days were lonely, she would tell me how she longed for a moment in time when Dad would come and sweep her off her feet. Dad was always distracted with his work. He had no real friends so he found solace in a bottle. He was a sad man. I saw her waiting, but he never came. She grew weaker and weaker over the years until her soul could no longer take flight. She vanished into Alzheimer’s and just continued to float away. He just watched from a distance. He saw her go that night when the doves cried outside the hospice window. The morphine drip was so kind to her. She slowed her fight into a stillness that took away her breadth. Silently she flew away and Daddy lost the key to her cage. I think the earth cried that day for it lost a great ally that it never really got to know. None of us really knew her; she was never pursued like a woman needs to be.

A woman has little choice if she is held to honor. If the man you marry does not engage you and your honor if does not allow you to betray him you must just sail away.

A cooing was coming from the eave just outside the cabin window. Perhaps my cold little friend is a dove? I was reminded of the pigeons in the cafeteria courtyard. I can see the people shooing them off. Here the sound is so comforting. Welcome friend it cooed and we were still. There was peace. He pursued me. This dove sent by Gods mercy and grace. Never alone… Malcolm is so right I think that is the only escape for women like me, and like those who are caged and left wanting. Sadness and then anger flooded my memories for I wanted to fight for her. I wanted mom to fight for herself. I loved her. I missed her, the real presence the woman within her heart, but I never got to know her really. Her lamp went out far too soon. She and I had so little time. I never really felt like she was very close to me. She wasn’t like all the other moms. It was always like she had some secrete to keep. If she did have a secret I never knew what was. After she died Daddy tolerated me. He put me through college and would call sometimes when I was in The University. Yet he was always distant I always felt like I owed him something. I never really knew what it was. I was always too afraid to ask. He is gone now too. They were the only family I ever had. They were a lot older than the parents of my friends. Dad gave me away too Malcolm but moms absence was so painful at my wedding that I just ached for her. When Dad gave me to Malcolm it was like the keys to my cage were lost. Malcolm soon rid our lives of cages. He taught me to be a bird on the wild. A freedom I never knew came with my marriage to him. I felt like I never really had parents. They were so distant and aloof from me. I never really did without things just them. I would have given anything just to feel a little more wanted by them. I could never understand why I was not aloud to see Nana Oona or speak of her. It was like they were ashamed of her. I don’t even know when she died. There was no funeral or service for her. She was just gone. I last saw her when I was about four or so. I am so amazed how much I can remember her presence around me. Sometimes I get flashes of some upsetting thing but I just can’t remember what it was. Mom and Dad just wouldn’t tell me why or what happened. They would just say hush never speak of it again. Some things are better forgotten. I tried to just trust them and obey.

The lamp by the chair was flickering a bit when I turned the old worn switch. Shadows were edged around the room. The quaint atmosphere was endearing. A jagged flash lit up the night and silence was interrupted by the lagging bang in the distance. It was like the noon of day for just an instant. My eyes adjusted back to the soft lighting of the seventy-five-watt bulb.

Flickering again, the lamp tells me to start my fire. I must start my fire quickly tonight. If I loose the electric I will have a real hard time of it. This old cabin does not even have any electric heating. This old pot bellied iron stove is the heating. Thank God Dwight sold me some wood. I am so glad he was there to help me. I liked having such good company today. Some days I feel so sadly cold and alone. When I am not alone at work it is because I am desperately needed by a patient or a family member in crisis. I am always on the guard as to not overstep the hospital rules and regulation. Most days I will have several people needing me at the same time. My pager would be buzzing and the central speaker calling for me to report to the E.R. department. I love the stillness here. Caring just for my own needs is so foreign to me. I never really have been a free dove since I lost Malcolm. My life has been caged in by the rules of all those bars holding me in. I have had to always depend upon the kindness of those who might fill my water cup or give me a few crumbs.

Almost everyone loves to look at a dove. Some cynics say that they are stupid. That they can’t search out anything for themselves. I need to free myself of this cage. Like my friend out there I may get caught in a few storms. I will find a refuge somewhere where I might be a blessing to some person resting in a cabin binding her wounds and finding her own wings.

Finding my wings?

The Cabernoff family was so kind to have offered me this refuge. They all but insisted, it warmed me so much to have others fighting for my heart. They were so upset at the way that I had been treated after all I had done for them and as they put it “and so many others!” I have wings that I can see but each time I begin to spread them Egan or one his cronies come by with the little clippers to keep me “grounded”. I must fly, and fight for the right the God given charge to use my giftedness. God has given it; it is God I will depend upon for the victory in all of this.

“God please hear my heart and help me to be true to it.” With all that is within me this is my request. I know he will here me and help me. I must reach through this trial. I will trust that whatever happens that I will be well cared for. I must not become indigent and wanting. “Please God give me the Wisdom I need to make the right choices you have set before me.” Knowing that my prayer is heard I let this go and I will rest in your friendship.

I’ll use this paper bag to kindle the fire. The ‘way’ is beginning to come back to me. I feel like I have always known how to do this. I have a second nature of it. It was only a moment and the fire was blazing and the wood caught on before the die down of the kindling vanished it into ash. I felt so thrilled to have accomplished this task independently. For self-sufficiency is a challenge to this widow. I was so well cared for by my love. I have so much responsibility now that it is up to me to care for myself.

Caring for myself, food! With my praying mantis in an inverted cup I feel like a prison guard. I am glad he will be returned to the garden tomorrow. The loss of his home might have just as well been his doom with this storm tonight. I will restore him soon to his hunting grounds though. I love that the foods Dwight gave me are free of those poisons that erase all life from our fields. The can of chicken opened with some effort. These old can openers so force the issue of sore hands. Washing the pot in the cold well water makes my joints even stiffer. It will be up to that hot iron stove to warm my hands. I will cook my supper for the first time on a potbellied wood fire. Oh man this is such an adventure. I love it. The rice mix will take a little while but I have time here. The broth in the can of chicken is fragrant. The bay laurel will honor my pot as I think of the garden and the simple wisdom of the gardener. I can await my meal that I am preparing in this peace and solitude without that rushed feeling of my daily other life back in the city. I wish I had purchased a sweet. I long for a little dark chocolate. A hot cup of peppermint tea would be lovely too. I find some strange joy in doing without though. It makes the idea of having it even more gratifying. How rich I am that normally I can just get any thing my heart desires. How spoiled that can make ones’ character. Demand and receive. I know it would not be worth the risk and effort to go back out tonight. That is somehow so gratifying to me. I just want to stay here alone. I must have dozed off in the fires glow. The sizzle of moisture on the iron plate of the stove stirred me awake. Waking was like a nice dream. That’s the best when our real time is a good dream.

Warm chicken and bay rice, plated I ate the raw carrots whole while the bay rice delighted my palate. I find it so charming to rub the little roots off of the carrots and just enjoy them as they are. The smell of mild onion coming from the counter is pleasing but I’ll use the leeks for tomorrow’s meal.

A nightingale makes me weep. I’m so tired Lord. I feel so week. Will I too fad away or will I fight it and pursue an adventure with you. Do you think that I am being too much, to bold and incessant with Egan and the others? Am I not enough, Am I letting you down by not speaking up more boldly?

The only one I remember is Nana Oona and her lessons. She saw an adventure in me Lord; she even saw beauty in me. Was Daddy afraid of mom and I that this great beauty would be a power to strong for him? Perhaps that is what the problem is with Egan and Medwin, Yvette and the others who want to clip my tail feathers and render me flightless. We were meant to take flight into our purpose! If I helped them to take flight into their purpose do you think Lord that that would free them from the threat? Is it my purpose, to free others and to walk in that freedom as an example to them? As a service to you God I fight my way out of this maize. A lullaby heard in the trees as they sway in time sooths me. I hear the stillness. The rain has stopped and the wave of down is floating away over the tops of ancient evergreens, pines and spruce, cypress, elder and oak. Even now with eyes closed I can see this quilt of clouds drift like a lover stealing the covers leaving you exposed to the cold. I long for the warmth of a lover to see me. The broth sizzled as it splashed over the rim onto the Iron burner plate. Startled and grabbing the pot I pulled it part way off the fire. I am so glad to see it boil. I smell the honor of the bay laurel. Sleep is as sweet as a warm meal now and I just long for it. To recline and wrap up into the cozy luxury of cotton cushioned joy thrills me. The thought of it pulls up a battle between food and bed. Opening the iron door and adding a log feels so natural to me. It is so like I was born to do it. What happened to me? Did I forget who I was? I survived by being someone or something else. Like a robot before its time, I remember the old “lost in space show” how hokey that robot looked like some modern costume that somebody’s eight year old made out in the garage. That’s how I feel at work now days, like someone’s robot out of its time. My suppers done, and as I dish it up the honor of the bay get discarded. Just like me at work. They eat me up, yet discard the honor. My belly now soothed of its hunger I can join the slumber of me eyes with the pillow I so long to meet, it was just as I had left it this morning. Another log in the iron and I bid my bones a good rest. I will do the dishes and clean up in the morning. Oh, the stillness.

The stillness was removed and replaced with a woodpecker on the stovepipe. No telling what time it was for up here the hour matters not so much as the rhythm of the earth. Nana Oona used to say listen to the rhythms they will tell you the way dear Theola they will show the way of it.

“Good morning Dear Lord”.

The chatter of the nuthatch cussed me out of bed. Fire, the stove needs wood, are there any coals? Oh please let there be coals! It must be very early because a few coals remain. The smaller splits will be the wisest ones to stoke up a flame. In and done the iron slapped shut. I jumped back into the cozy warmth and rubbed my feet until the chill wore off the sheets again. I felt so wild. Like a frontiersmen the adventure of the morning begins. Once the little room warmed up a bit, I ventured out to start the shower. Soon the pumps self-primer kicked in. That was what I heard yesterday morning. No wonder the shower took so long to heat up. This rustic cabin with the limited modern conveniences is a mixture of booth worlds just like me. Time now to set a log, and fill the belly of the stove with the mass of it. Now I am warming up. A shower hot and refreshing I’ll shut this door so the bathroom will warm up some first. One more log, the last indulgence. I really want a warm place when I’m done with the shower. I love the water as it falls over my head and through my hair. My face feels the kiss of a lover’s tenderness as the numbness fades from my cheeks. All warmth embraces me now, as I am immersed into this watery world. Gratefully I weep at this simple provision. I feel so grateful to you God for every provision. You are the lover of my soul. I find comfort in you as I start this new day. Good morning my dear Love my dear Lord and friend. May I be a blessing to you today in all that I do, think and say? Weeping removes the walls around my heart I let Him in for a few moments in time. My mind is still. Silent in my pain I feel my face in Gods hands. The warmth is like a balm of fragrant kindness. Comfort and ease remove the pain of this coldness I have experienced. Breathing deeply I have paused to take it in. Why have I waited so long to be still? I missed you Father. I need you. I am made silent within me. My mind in this moment alone feels humbled be relieved of burdens, insults and wounds. Rest… rest. I have been gifted with the freedom of rest. Thank you, thank you Lord.

My old iron belly friend has served me well the cabin is warm. The pump gifts me with an icy cold drink of morning well water. The taste of it is like nothing, literally nothing. At home the water has flavor not here. This water is the purest drink I have ever had.

Fitting for a morning absent of the other world my life knows. I neglect the stillness the comfort God has for me. The comfort needed by those in my care has taken presidency for so long. I need to learn the balance of preservation of my own peace and comfort. Not an easy task with having so many pulling on me and pushing against me. I must grow the wings that will help me fly. I must free myself of the cage. I must turn the key in my own life so that I can open the lock in the lives of those I serve. It is enemies like Egan who would extinguish my light if they were able. Egan and Medwin want me to resign my position on staff. I am making a difference that they can’t understand. The protocols are not followed and they refuse to see any farther than the rules give them rope. They are so entangled with the laws that the rope can only be used to bind people up. The cord synch hard against freedom of flight and it is only praised to be a prisoner of “the acceptable” ways to respond. I am so weary of this fight each time I almost have a patient untangled and on the way to healing the Chaplainry steps in and disembowels the strength of truth the people stand on. Then they fall and fall so hard and with such excruciating agony that they are often are unable to be restored. These are the leaders who are supposed to work with me and for me. They are assigned to be the support net that I can fall into to find encouragement. Yet they have believed a lie. They have pursued a career and engage in the business of what was once a relationship, a mission of compassion. How can I endure this betrayal? This pain is so great to beat. It hurts me so badly to see them broken without recourse. What can be done Lord? Can you change Egan and Medwin or get them out of the way somehow. Oh Lord I do not wish their demise. I long for the destruction to stop. If there are demonic sources behind this I stand in opposition to them by the cross of Christ placed between them and Trumann General. I’m falling to my knees God. Please as I lay here naked before you please. Weeping is now my breakfast, a fast broken only by my tears. I weep. My heart, my head hurts with the pain my weeping has pulled up within me. I am so battle worn. Lord I lay it down and I am asking you to please make a way.

The comb runs through the length of my hair. Few tangles to hinder it, the water in the well must be soft. I can feel the slick moisture on my shoulders as I pat them dry. This bathroom is a cloud of steam. I shut my eyes and I am floating above the treetops. I am flying. I have broken through the restraints of that old cage, so distain.

Wrapped in my towel I’m falling into bed. Weeping is coming up out of me like a geyser of heated emotion. Losing strength it then is only to rise again at each remembrance of betrayal. Each Patient who was approached and told that the administration doesn’t condone or approve of my unconventional ways and apologizes for any problems I may have created. How arrogant to remove the strength that these dear people were finding such solace in. When was it that Egan or Medwin last read what the Holy Scriptures said? They just parrot the doctrines they have memorized at seminary. People need living truth not dead memories of text devised by someone whose intentions were to avoid lawsuits. Weeping may endure for a night but joy comes in the morning. Father when will my morning come? Is this a battle you want me to return too or walk away from? I must know what you desire me to do.

I awoke to the sounds of songbirds like a touch of a hand that strokes ones brow and stills the mind. I am hungry! And I am slightly moist from my towel. Chilled I rise from this warm bed to dress. All touch seems tender to me. I am so sore of spirit. I need a tender day. I need to be cared for gently. I put on my soft sweatshirt with the humming birds on it, I have herd it said that pink is for healing. I could use that healing today. Stretchy pants too. I want to wear my moccasins but I wonder if it is to wet outside. Looking out onto the porch I see the steel. Oh now that makes more since to me now, a triangle to call down for help. That is what Dwight was speaking about. Dwight, “we have met before” Where? The forest floor thick with the debris of life looks dry on surface and that will do. I love the intimacy of my moccasins. I can’t where them in the city due to the subtle bigotry of those who are so ‘accepting’ of diversity.

A fire out cold now, but it looks like the sun has been up for some time now. I don’t want to eat rice; it’s been out all night. I don’t trust it. It’s time for another one of my adventures. Kerstin is always telling me she longs for the day she can just spend time with me without another “’adventure” interrupting us.

I wonder if I can find something to keep this little praying mantis in. Splendid the rice box that is just the thing! With a paper slid under the overturned cup, turning it over and gently dropping him in. Done, I got ya! Let’s take you back home. You have a garden to protect little one. I’ve got my key, and my bag. The inside of the cabin is secure. The door takes a couple of tries to latch. It must be swollen from the rain last night. My car looks so out of place here funny how unappealing it is, compared to the blue spruce beside it. I find a place inside of me that wants to thank the spruce for its help. Oona and the old ways stir within me. I want to remember them but the reservation was a lifetime ago. No one must know of it if I am to keep the social position I have gained. For the loss of masks I wear would surely remove all authority and power that men have given me. Oona said that God had given me a gift. Could that transcend the authority I’m so afraid to loose? Free me God. Require your will within me. Help me to comply and please remove the fear and pretence far from me. If only I could be true to whom I am.

The tone of the alarm sounds as the doors unlock. Slipping into the cold wet car seat started me. I set my little friend down beside me. The engine disrupts the stillness like a giant misplaced U.F.O. I shut it off. I don’t belong in it today. I stepped out and grabbed the rice box and closed the door. Today I hate the sound of the beep. So I will just walk away. To walk is Oona’s way. She told me of how the birds and creature would teach her “the way” as she walked to the white mans school. The lessons of the white man made no since. They looked into pages of books and the faces of the children never looked up to the life around them. Seminary was mush like she told me about her own days in school. We were taught to look down into the pages of the bible and all of the other study books. I remember how every chance I had I would look up. Did Egan ever raise his eyes? Can I show him how to look up?

My steps began to soften on the earth as I continued on. The Way of it would tell us to walk softly on the earth. I have no way of knowing how far it is to the general store but I don’t choose to be governed by that limitation. God I am hungry and I need food please be my provision and lead me in your path in your way. This needs to be possible in the city this needs to be possible with my friends around me this needs to be me even with my enemies!

God you need to be my food this day, every day. Make my heart to trust in you today, each and every day of my life with every breadth of my life.

It seems to be wisdom to get onto the main road. The asphalt is hard so the roadside is my path as much as possible. So many flowers are showing gratitude for the rain yesterday. Yellow marigolds, purple prairie gentian, red and orange columbine, coral-bells and crimson king reflect the sun on each of the dewdrops. The flowers are my soul food. They are the eye candy my course out of order desert is first. God’s design captured rebellion from the mundane. My appetite is robust and I take all of this beauty in. Each moment in time, as my footfalls become softer and softer upon this earth, I hear more clearly. The days come flooding back to me when I would walk for hours and miles taking in the lessons Father God had for me. We would walk and the Holy Spirit would talk to me uninterrupted, telling me of his design and His love. Gods perspectives were reveled in such intimacy that even now I am fully assured that it was his voice that spoke to me and non other. Where did my heart go? Where have I been? In my youth you opened my eyes to the darkness and lies and I shut them again. I want to come home to my Father I want to be part of where my heart says I belong. I want to challenge the lies that keep your people far from you. Accusing you of all the wrong that we do to our selves and that is done to us. The sun smiles upon me and I am warmed by the blinding glow. My steps soft are unseen as I close my eyes against the glair. I can see everything around me even in the absence of my eyesight. Nothing is lost. All is evident and every so often I will glance to make sure I have a safe path. When the soil texture changes, I know it. I can tell be the way the earth touches my moccasins. Two or three miles must have passed when I felt a tug on the leg of my pant. Caught by a thorn, the berry caught my eye. Black Raspberries! Joy! Joy! Breakfast at Tiffany has nothing on this! I gathered berries and filled my mouth with this treasure of the earth, I feel so here, so present in this moment. My hands are purple with the stain of the testimony of your provision Lord. Well Hello little one, do you want one too? Holding my hand out, extending it so slowly and so carefully. I held eye contact with the thoughts of all that is holy and he came aboard. My heart speaks a silent greeting of peace is to you. The moments we shared were beautiful. This is life.

He was so handsome, “See Dee Dee, teed le-dee” thank you my little gray crested Titmouse.

Traveling on with my fill of your abundance I smile at the future. The bend in the road has approached and the General Store is now in view. Dwight was to tell me where I knew him from today. I don’t want to spoil the mystery. I like knowing him anew. It is fun to not have to know all the answers. It is good for my soul to just enjoy this gregarious fellow. A declining grade of road made my legs speed up as I approached. I felt like a girl trying not to skip in front of the schoolmaster. She is nowhere to be seen so I shall. It has been a lifetime ago that I skipped. What fun! Man I’m gaining a lot of speed. Laughter breaks out of me as I begin to stumble into the dusty lot of the store. Laughter, I am abandoned to laughter. So long I have yearned for this abandon. So full is the release from within, weeping I laugh. Sitting down on the huge granite boulder I try to ketch my breadth. I have an old clock swing. Pain meets joy. I am whole.

“Mrs. Tallu are you all right Mam?” Asked Dwight, as he came running from the garden.

“Dear Sir I haven’t been this all right for a very long time.” I said smiling with my eyes still full of tears.

“Well that’s mighty good news you gave me quite a start to see you so”, said Dwight

“I brought your friend back to you”

“Who might that be”? Dwight asked”

My company was a wonderful little green fellow, a praying mantis, as a matter of fact. I have him in this rice box. I hope he is all right. Are you on foot Mrs. Tallu? Asked Dwight

Yes I am, today the sounds of a car just polluted the quiet so I turned off the motor and walked.

“Mam that’s three miles you traveled”. He exclaimed

Indeed? I had berries on the way. What a wonderful breakfast that was. The best meal I have had in years. I picked it myself.

“Is that all you’ve had?” Dwight asked

Yes, with the sunshine on the side. I smiled at him. The way he cared so much was very endearing.

“Are ya rested some now? Can you come on to the house? I could serve you some coffee if you like?” his invitation chimed

“Oh! Dwight that sounds delightful and don’t let me leave here without proper groceries, especially some dark chocolate. I have had dark chocolate on my mind all night.”

Laughing we started off. Dwight held my arm and steadied my weary steps to the upper garden. We set up our social on the table in the yard.

“I love to see your garden dear Sir. Lets free our little prayer buddy here. What does this mantis like best? I asked

“Well what was he enjoying when you found him?” from the gardeners mind

“The carrots, the wonderfully fern like leaves of those carrots“I said humored at the simplicity

“Then there he should go” Dwight responded

As he gently reached for the rice box and tipping it up gently, the little creature was now back home where he belonged.

“Well you just rest a while and I’ll be back in a jiffy. You take any thing in it?”

“Well I like soymilk but that can often be hard to come by so black with sugar is second best. No milk please I have an allergy to it.”

“Enjoy the garden I’ll return shortly.” My host smiled and left.

Oh how Kerstin Rowena would love this place. She would let down her silver hair and brush it out right on the spot. I can just imagine the sun on it now so white and shocking. She is so wise. I can always tell her of my journeys. I wish I could just sit with her adventure free, except for her. I feel I owe her so much. She has always partnered with me in prayer all these years. The smell of coffee is filling the air. Comes to me my new friend to share a cup. “Oh thank you! Dwight! What have you there oh, you are a sweet heart yourself. I love dark chocolate. Thank you. “

As my mouth fills with the bittersweet oils of a quality bonbon I am in heaven!

“Mr. Roscoe you are a rascal. I love it.”

“I offer sweets for the sweet Lady. Now have you considered our prior meeting, Mrs.Tallu?”

“Yes I have given the question some thought coming up with this as my conclusion. I rather enjoy the mystery of not knowing the answer to it. I’m not sure I want to discover your secrete.”

“Well now. He said that does sound like you. I must say this rest is bringing back the heart of the girl that I once knew.”

“Now you offer a clue this shall be a morsel to consider. I will see it by and by.” I like getting to know you for who you are this day. “She said”

Now that sounds like the heart within you too, said Mr. Dwight Roscoe.

Coffee is wonderful and the chocolate perfectly marvelous. I had better get a few things together from the store and head back up the hill. Mr. Ros… “Dwight” yes, yes… Dwight, would you be able to drive me up the hill? Well I’ll have to lock down the store and the pumps to do so.

Oh no, I couldn’t ask that of you.

You all ready have Mam and it would be my pleasure. I’ll just turn the clock sign over and if it is important anyone can just wait the few minutes it will take me to get you up the hill. Not a problem at all, not at all. Now let’s go see to those supplies.

I’ll get a cart today. I need two bundles of wood. I’ll get some lunch fixings, supper and things for breakfast. Do you have any instant coffee? I love the ones that are flavored they don’t love me too much but I’ll splurge a little.

Over here Dwight pointed to the third row of the little, five row store. Don’t forget some matches or a lighter now. Where can I find the chocolates you served?

Well Mam that is a special reserve held only for garden guests. You come back for tea tomorrow and I will be sure to have some plated.

Tea! Yes I’d like that. Tea and another clue would be fun. I want to get some peppermint tea for this evening do you have some. I have some peppermint picked and set aside for you in the produce case. You’ll find a few apples in there too if you would like some. I pulled them up from the cellar last night. This mountain air is giving you back a nice robust appetite. It is good to see you enjoying yourself. Would you like some juice for you breakfast too? Maybe you would like some birdseed for any little friends that come to see ya? We got a lot of migrating birds this time of year.

What a splendid idea. Well that will do it.

Lets see now, the tally rang out and after the last item was rung up I pulled my card out of my secrete spot. Nature’s pocket, paid for my goods. Bagged and ready to go.

Dwight the kind gentleman he is proving to be held the door as the shop bell clanged goodbye. He held the door of the old rusty pick up as I pulled myself up. He placed the “be back soon” sign in the door. Paddle locked the gas pump and loaded my bags in the bed of the truck. Rumbling up the road we make quick time of it. He helped me with the bags and insisted on starting my evening fire. We used the last log from the first bundle and cut into the second one. The iron belly was warm and cherry like a black Santa in the cold of winter. We bid a goodbye and I thanked him for his many kindnesses. The old rusty truck could be heard for some time. My day spent resting and being in the quiet. Soon was silent again in the forest just before the night.

This man sees my heart and thinks the best of me. Somewhere I have found favor with him. Dwight must be one of “His.” Supper was sped up by the fire ready to cook it was done in what seemed but just a moment. I really like the tea leaves pure fresh peppermint. He knew I loved peppermint tea. How would he know that? If it were recent I would think I would not have any problem remembering. My clue, it must have occurred several years ago, long before I forgot who I was, ong before I forgot my gift. During the years that my memories of Oona and the way were still fresh and I had not forgotten.

Tea remembers, a cup of tea can hold my heart as it sooths my mind. Sleep is prepared for me and I am ready. I will hold this day. I will remember. Lord lay me down in the truth. Show me who I am. I need to remember who I am. Good night Father. Covers pulled over me just as I am. Day is done.

Waking up to my un-brushed teeth I pined for a drink of water. I slept hard through the night. Stiffness gowned in my back. Stretching out aches I realize I was exposed to a long cold night. I have to go back home today. I don’t want to go. I’m crying inside to think of going back into the froe. Rolling into the blankets I spin into a cocoon. I am so cold! I am a swaddled child. The pressure of the covers feels so secure. I don’t want to face them again. All the strife all the blindness is so oppressive. Please God do something in Egan’s heart to open his eyes and ears to me, to you. I know he is a good man he has a good heart. The role he is in is killing the life force within him. He is becoming a walking dead man. I can see it in his eyes. I hear it in the defeated words he uses against me. He tries to constrain me. Please God help him. Help me. Dozing in and out I find comfort being enveloped this way. However I need to get my day going. Start a fire, and heat some water for the dishes. If I shower the hot water will warm me quickly. Fire first so it can warm the room. Get some water in the kettle for dishes. The heat pump for the shower is such a blessing an afterthought I guess. Why not for dishes too? Perhaps it is just the way it is. Rolling round and round and falling off the bed laughter engulf me. I laugh until I cry. Oh Lord I need your tender embrace. I need your wisdom. Well at least I’m dressed. Fire, come on potbelly give. The kindling began quickly so as to get the logs going .Yes a fire! Kettle is full. I grabbed my last clean outfit out of the little armoire, turning the tub handles and shutting the door, I disrobe for my shower. Shivering, awaiting the warmth to shortly come, luxury is a hot shower. The kettle water was enough to give me some instant coffee and to warm the dishpan water. The last of the little muffins from home were a little dry but the sipping of the coffee moistened them well enough. It is nice to be clean and have a little food in my tummy. I’m thinking a lot about standing in the truth of who I am. Washing off each threat of rejection with every dish I scrubbed. Stripping the bed linins off and packing up my stuff I longed to stay. This trip was used as such a reminder of walking in “the Way”. I must be true to you Lord. The dishes are all clean and dry. Stacked back into the cupboard it looks like I was never here. I must be true to who I am too. I must leave an imprint. I must never be as if I were in no way here walking and this earth. When I look back on my life, I long to see my own soft tracks, along life’s footpath. Why else transverse it?

I think I’ll sit with the scriptures a while. Talking with and listening to God, I’m lead to Psalm forty-three. In verse five “Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why are you disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him, The help of my countenance, and my God.

I have a long four-hour drive down the mountain later today. I will miss this time of stillness and peace. I must take it with me within me. I must hold onto the calm you offer me and NOT let anyone rob it or strong arm me into distress. From where within me can I find the courage, the power to stand? I want to be willing to risk everything to be real. I want to be true faced and beautiful, powerful and anointed to heal. I despise the clerical mask. I detest the religious pretence. And yet I’m afraid to walk exposing “the way”. The power of the spirit gains attention. We have been urged to keep our eye on those who cause dissension and hindrance contrary to the teaching that I learned and to turn away from them. When the Holy Spirit distracts the focus off of the leadership and the religious theologies that means they aren’t getting all the attention their wounded hearts long for. Then being forced to explain myself, to explain the way of the spirit is like showing pearls to swine. It isn’t enough for them just to believe they have to understand everything or they reject it. The ways of God are so often unexplainable. The ways of God are not up for debate with me. The scriptures speak of avoiding vain conversations and disputes. And they just don’t get it. Love would not to put an obstacle or a stumbling block in another’s way. This abhorrence toward division must empower me to rebel against it and to fight for the truth and for the humble. I’ll load the car up. The dirty clothes and linins can go in to he trunk I closed it after tossing the bag of trash into the trunk. Looking up I see to the treetops. The frolicking of two squirrels in the branches catches my attention. They are so beautiful. They are just being squirrels. . I want to just be me also. Will I be enough to explain the truth to Egan and the administration? Will I come off to strong and offend them before I even have the chance to win them over? Will I be beautiful will I be able to allure them and win the favor that will cause them to at least listen to me? I must find the wisdom and the courage to walk into the things so strongly fixed into my heart and mind. I hope I get to return here someday.

Older women likewise teach the younger women...

• how to love their husbands
• how to love their children
• how to be self-controlled
• how to be pure
• how to be keepers at home
• how to be kind and submissive (not subservient) to their own husbands. (See Titus 2:3-5)

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By Maya Angelou

'A woman's heart should be so hidden in Christ
That a man should have to seek Him first to find her.'

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I'm not shouting 'I'm clean living,'
I'm whispering 'I was lost, Now I'm found and forgiven.'

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I don't speak of this with pride.
I'm confessing that I stumble and need Christ to be my guide.

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I'm not trying to be strong.
I'm professing that I'm weak and need His strength to carry on.

When I say.. 'I am a Christian' I'm not bragging of success.
I'm admitting I have failed and need God to clean my mess.

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I'm not claiming to be perfect,
My flaws are far too visible, but God believes I am worth it.

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I still feel the sting of pain...
I have my share of heartaches, so I call upon His name.

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I'm not holier than thou,
I'm just a simple sinner Who received God's good grace, somehow!

Words have power. Here are a few of my favorite sayings.

  • A warm cup of tea is like a cuddle with a friend.
  • The North American Indians have a more eloquent word for ‘friend’ than we do in English. In their language, the word for friend literally means, “the one who carries my sorrows on his back.”
  • Return with Honor
  • The sage anticipates things that are difficult while they are easy, and does things that would become great while they are small. All difficult things in the world are sure to arise from a previous state in which they were easy, and all great things from one in which they were small. Therefore the sage, while he never does what is great, is able on that account to accomplish the greatest things."
  • “Live so that when your children hear these words they think of you… Fairness Caring Integrity Honesty Love Trust.”
  • "O Lord help my words to be gracious and tender today, for tomarrow I may have to eat them."
  • "No man has ever been shot while doing the dishes"

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e patterns My sister told me of this site

Please pray for her parents and family

Please pray for her parents and family
Amy has clicked her heals and flown to her real home. There is no place like home.

This was given to me for the third time in just a few weeks.

Zephaniah 3:17 NLT
"For the LORD your God has arrived to live among you. He is a mighty savior. He will rejoice over you with great gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will exult over you by singing a happy song."

Thank You Ross

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Thank you all for the kindness you have shown me with every Award. I am embraced. You Are a blessing.

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