The Sands of Time

What is time? We can’t see it.  We can’t hold it in my hands.  We can’t smell it or eat it.  We can’t stop it, start it, speed it up, or slow it down.  We have no power over time.  None. Nothing we can do changes the relentless flow of the sands of time through the hourglass of our lives.

We can not call it back.  There are no “do overs” of a year, month, week, day, or even moment of our lives.  Once the time is gone, there is no calling it back.  We have only one chance to use our time wisely.

The last several years have given me a new perspective on my life. Reality check: I have learned that for each of us, myself included, one day our time on earth will be gone.  That is it. Done.  I am not being morbid and negative here.  Just stating facts.

In fact, I believe that once we accept the reality that our time here has a definite end, and each day we live brings us one day closer to THAT day, we will begin to truly live our lives to the fullest.  Enjoying the wonderful moments that God gives us. Cherishing time with our family.  Using opportunities to touch the lives of those around us.  Preparing for THAT  unavoidable day.

With this truth firmly planted in our hearts and minds, let’s live our lives with joy, and with purpose, making the most of the time we are given each day to experience and share with others God’s love and grace.

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Home Sweet Home

This email came from Dot, Wayne’s sister a couple of days ago. We are thrilled that Wayne and Glynn will be able to celebrate Christmas at home and with us, their church family.

Hope all of our friends and family had as wonderful a Thanksgiving as we here in West Texas did. God was so good to us and sent us the most beautiful snow I think I have ever seen. We had from 6 to 8 inches. It snowed all day on Thanksgiving Day and it really was good to know everyone was not traveling and could just enjoy it. What a blessing it was to have family together, except our Mom couldn’t be here because of the weather. Everyone went to visit her the next day though and that pleased her.

Wayne and Glynn called and they will be finishing up at Baylor on Wednesday and heading home on Thursday, Praise The Lord they don’t have to go back. He can do the other round of chemo in Midland and it is sometime after Christmas. They are just really excited today. I talked with them earlier and they were whooping and hollering on the phone!!! They love their home so much and are so ready to return to it to stay. They are so very grateful for Preston and Seanna for making them feel so at home while they were there. The Lord sure did bless them all during these past few months. We are just continuing to thank God for Wayne being able to enjoy the holiday as much as he did. As you can see in the picture he is looking very good as you consider what he has been thru. God is Good!!

Everyone put on your Christmas smiles and begin to decorate for the holiday. Let’s all get in that Wonderful Christmas Spirit as we remember that Jesus is our Saviour and Lord and without Him we would be nothing.

I love you each and everyone,

Mom-Grandma-Dot

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Thanksgiving and Thankfulness

This year we took a day trip to Lubbock for Thanksgiving, spending the holiday with Mary, my husband’s 85 year old mother.  Our son, daughter, and son-in-law were with us.  Lisa and I prepared the meal yesterday and took it with us.  It snowed all day giving the trees and yards a ‘winter wonderland’ appearance.   The calm, quiet day was very enjoyable, and then we traveled home.

My first thoughts this Thanksgiving morning were, “I’m thankful that we had no family funerals this year.”  We could have easily had two.

The day after Thanksgiving last year Rick, my husband, fell from a ladder, breaking both ankles and the fibulia in his right leg.  When he fell he went forward, landing on first his feet, then his hands and knees.  He could gone backwards, hitting his head on the concrete.  The injuries then would have probably been fatal.  Yes.  I am thankful…..

Then Mom, my grandmother, was so very sick and at the age of 96, none of us thought she would pull through.  But she did.  I took her to the doctor this week.  His first comments were…”You never discount the power of answered prayer”.  She is doing great!  Yes. I am thankful…..

Celebrating in the Midst of Sadness

Oh, it is so hard to put a smile on your face when your heart is breaking. Trying to make the best of what seems to be the worst of circumstances is very very difficult. Knowing that this might be the last holiday with a family member, or realizing that this is the first of many holidays without a family member, is hard.

If you family is in the midst of heartache and sadness because of illness or loss, then you understand the challenges of the next few weeks.

Please know that you do not have to be perfect during this time. If you have a ‘come apart’ and your emotions take total control, if you suddenly feel angry or frustrated, if you feel overwhelming sadness, or if things just don’t feel right, allow yourself to take a step back and look at your situation. It is totally understandable to feel as you do, but work to not allow yourself to dwell on the sadness, anger, or frustration. Your loved family member would want you to focus instead on the enjoyable moments of the holiday, making the ‘best’ of things.

Feeling the Effects of Chemo and Radiation

 I realized that chemo can cause a metallic taste in the mouths of cancer patients, giving them no desire to eat or drink anything.  This ‘taste’ makes everything taste horrible which adds to the misery of the nausea.

I did not realize that there was a stench, a burned smell, which also fills the nostrils of those undergoing treatment for cancer.  It is possible that this smell is caused by radiation.

I can not imagine how miserable this must be…..nausea, metallic taste, and smelling a continual burned odor.

God’s Grace is sufficient for this moment also.  Wayne and Glynn are openly and courageously allowing us to watch and learn about God’s sufficient grace.  One day  each of us will come to the places in our lives when we will need to experience that Grace for ourselves.

This is Dot’s email updating Wayne’s condition.

Hello everyone,

Just wanted to give an update on Wayne.  For the past 3 days Wayne has not felt good at all.  He has lots of dizziness and nausea.  He has not had his treatments since Wednesday.  The doctor has ordered IV feedings for the last 3 days.  He has been very weak.  He has a very foul stinch that he smells and it makes him sick to smell any thing cooking, even boiling water.  They did his Electralights today at the hospital and all of his labs came back good.  They are telling him that it is just the effects of the chemo and radiation taking their toll on him.  They are letting him rest for the rest of this week to help his body get built up again.  We would like for you to pray that he can begin again on Monday with his treatments.  Glynn said she feels like if they don’t that it is just giving the cancer a chance to grow some more and she wants it gone!!  Be much in prayer for her as she waits upon Wayne and helps to keep his spirits up.  They both missed so much not getting to come home again as they planned.  We are hoping that they can be home for Thanksgiving.

Once again thank you all for your prayers, cards and phone calls.  They have been very touched by it all.

Love to you all,

Dot

Must We Be Strong For Each Other?

Wayne and Glynn were home this past weekend,  giving them chance to rest a little bit, and giving us a chance to see them at church.  Wayne, while showing some of the ‘wear and tear’ of chemo and radiation on his body through weight loss and general weakness, is holding up well.  They both had so much to share with us, and we, their Sunday School class family, were eager to hear about how God is leading and providing for them.

I learned that Wayne’s cancer, while being named pancreatic cancer, is actually on the outside of his pancreas.  It is located behind and is attached to his pancreas, and it is wrapped around nerves.  It is inoperable at this time, but the hope is that the chemo and radiation treatments will shrink the tumor enough to make it operable.

This has been an interesting time for us as a Sunday School Class.  We are all different in our views of crisis and how we react to it, but we all want to be supportive.

There was a comment made by one member and when she reads this post, she will recognize it.  Her comment to Glynn was, “Glynn, you don’t have to be strong for Wayne.  We are all here and we can be strong for you.”  I believe I understand what she was communicating to Glynn.  She was saying, “Glynn, you are not by yourself.  Our prayers are with you, and we want to help carry the burden.”  She is correct.  Because we love Wayne and Glynn, we want so very much to walk this path with them, holding them and supporting them.

I have thought about the statement, “Glynn, you don’t have to be strong for Wayne,” and I somewhat disagree. In my opinion, there have been and will be many times when Glynn must be strong for Wayne.   She will at times be alone standing alone with him when he needs encouragement, when there are decisions to be made, when he is in pain,  and so much more.

She will have to be strong and ‘clear headed’ as she does these things alone.  However, we all know that she is not and will not be alone.  She may be the only one standing there, but she is not alone.  Glynn has and is allowing God to give her the strength to meet these very difficult moments.  She is finding his Grace to be Sufficient for each moment.  Grace to be strong for moments where strength is required.  Grace for moments when weakness and tears are necessary.

It is my prayer that each of us learn to allow God’s ‘Sufficient Grace for the moment’ to be Present in our lives.