Monday, July 27, 2009

thoughts on vacation

It is a good thing to get way from the everyday hum drum of life now and then. It is good for the body and good for the soul.

The beach has been interesting for the last few days........... a steady, rather forceful wind and an extremely rough surf with a strong undertow. One of our umbrellas blew up and tumbled down the beach. Quite shocking when you are sitting under it when it happens.

The loudness of the crashing waves drowns out the stress and brings a certain calm. I am very thankful for this because I needed relief, even if for only a few days.

I love to swim in the ocean........I have perservered even in the strong surf. The water is so warm, but it has really beat me up. I couldn't believe it when I read this verse in the Bible this morning.......

Psalm 42:7b "All Thy breakers and Thy waves have rolled over me."


Friday, July 24, 2009

........or not

I think there will be no more talk about this new medical problem until after Hilton Head. Then there will be many second opinions and a new lifestyle for me.

As most of you know, I have been "stretched to the limit" by the situation with my family (father and sister) and the doctors all feel that is the single most contributing factor. Stress kills, friends, if you let it.

I went down to the ocean again today. I finished a book I had been reading and just listened to the crashing waves for a while. Somehow that has a calming effect on me. I swam in an angry ocean as well. The waves were big and an undertow kept taking me north. Good exercise fighting that pull. I love the ocean so much! You know I still want to be swimming in the ocean when I am 90. Be prepared David and Amanda.

I went to Kroger after we had dinner with David, Erika, Lucy, Harry, Kim, and Isobel. I have been looking for fresh green peanuts to boil and had just about given up. To my surprise they had just gotten in a huge vat of them. I bought eight pounds.

Let the vacation begin!

"Let all who seek Thee rejoice and be glad in Thee;
Let those who love Thy salvation say continually,
The Lord be magnified." Psalm 40:16

When I magnify the Lord and put Him continually before me, He becomes larger and more powerful and I become smaller and smaller.

He can do all that I cannot.

My biggest battle is unbelief.......amen and amen

Thursday, July 23, 2009

i will love you forever...

if you bring me a big bouquet of peonies....I'll wait to see who does that.

Some things on my mind~~~~~~~~~

I had a pedicure and complete luxury. I went for a wild pink for the beach.
Yes, we are going to be at Hilton Head all next week with Bubba's family. Two chairs and an umbrella and complete relaxation.

I went to the doctor today....the protein in my blood is way low and that is why I have been so sick this year. What that means is that my blood is not making the antibodies it needs to fight infections.

to be continued

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

over & under and up & down

Sometimes, like today, I carry my small chair and a book down to the ocean.
I sit very close to the waves and I read and then when I get really hot I go out into the ocean.

I go over the waves and sometimes I go under the waves.
I jump up and then down on the other side.
I flip over and float looking up at the sky.

On the surface of the water I see tiny diamonds sparkling in the sun.
On the sandy floor my toes are always searching for treasures.
I pray and ask God to keep the sharks away.
Never would I let the fear of what I can't see keep me away from this luxury.

"As the deer pants for the water brooks,
so my soul pants for Thee, O God.
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God." Psalm 42 1

Basking in the vastness of the ocean today, I was overwhelmed with the goodness of God.....
for choosing me to be His child in Christ Jesus. His gentleness and patience with me, such a sinner, amazes me........... how He slowly and sometimes painfully teaches me His ways.

Oh Lord may we desire you as the thirsty deer pants for the water he needs to live.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

just too tired

Home's been a week since we headed to Virginia.
After a very good and seemingly quick trip, we arrived at the beach a little after 3:30 this afternoon. I have unpacked and will soon be headed for the bed.

I told Bubba just now as we ate dinner that my bad eye was bothering me. He said that it was fatigue and the fact that I read almost all the way home could have contributed to that.

I am worried that I left Amanda too soon and for a little bit would turn around and go back.
After talking to her just now, she seems to be feeling better and that lifts my spirits a little.

How beautiful the ocean is tonight! The sky and the water are both extremely blue.....maybe it's because I haven't seen it for a week. I want to take a walk, but I am just too tired.

Until I revive myself....


Monday, July 20, 2009

going home

When we pull out of here tomorrow I will be a little sad.
Sad to leave Amanda in her weakened state....
Sad to leave these fun and loving little boys.

I have tried to get everything done.....the beds are all changed and the boys clothes are all washed and clean. She will have meals prepared for the rest of this week and next. I know that Mark will take good care of her.....but I have bonded here and I will be a little sad.

I took myself out for a little while this afternoon while everyone was sleeping. I found an excellent antique mall and I spent a good while in Barnes and Noble choosing my next reading material.

Continuing my love affair with Hermon Wouk, the author of The Winds of War and War and Remembrance, I chose The Hope, "A Magnificent Saga - encompassing two novels that brings brilliantly to life the epic adventure of Israel's founding and struggle to survive starting in 1918 and culminating in the miraculous triumph of 1967's Six Day War."

My other choice is The Worst Hard Time, "the untold story of those who survived the Great American Dust Bowl." This will fulfill my desire for another history of weather related calamities in the United States.

I am also reading for the third time Spiritual Depression by Martin Lloyd Jones. I need the truth it contains so much right now.

It is such a blessing to be with like-minded believers.......those who share your joy in Christ and what He has done. To be able to sit down and talk openly about the things of God without ever hearing murmurings and complainings and loud outbursts of unkind words. I know it is a bit like heaven will be.

Please pray for us as we travel back to Savannah tomorrow and continue to pray that my earthly father will know the truth. Also pray that Amanda will heal quickly both physically and emotionally in the days to come.

love to all tonight.........cathy

Sunday, July 19, 2009

jake in church

He is four.
He has started to sit all the way through the worship service on Sunday morning.

Today Jake led us right up to the very first row where he usually sits with his mom.
There sat we......his granddaddy and me with him in between.

He attached himself to me, tucked under my arm for the entire service.
He had his Bible and some paper to write on. He was very good and I loved having his warm little body next to mine.

When the service was over he took his father's hand and they walked out together.

So much sympathy and empathy for their pastor and his wife and little boys. There has been a steady stream of food and flowers and little gifts coming to our door. It is a country church and many people bring offerings from their summer gardens.

One little lady came carrying a Wal Mart bag containing three cucumbers and a tomato. She said that was all she had to give. I thought of the widow's mite in Scripture.

Out of the goodness of her heart she wanted to give and she did.

Amanda is getting better and better every day. I am so glad to have been here to share this time with my loved ones.

Blessing upon blessing in this time of sorrow.


Saturday, July 18, 2009

a servant's heart

I do not have a servant's heart.
I wish I did, but I don't.
When an opportunity to serve others comes my way I have to pray that the Holy Spirit will give me a heart that desires to do for others and forget about myself.

The life of a believer is a continual battle between "your own way" and God's way. Nothing in the spiritual realm comes easy.......we must always battle with ourselves to do the will of God.

It is God's power in us that enables us to do His will.

"Now the God of peace who brought up from the dead the great Shepherd of the sheep through the blood of the eternal covenant, even Jesus Christ our Lord, equip you in every good thing to do His will, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever and ever, Amen." Hebrews 13:21

Look at this is so rich:


Equips us in every good thing to do His will
Works in us that which is pleasing in His sight

The power of God in the form of His Holy Spirit equips us and works in us so that we would desire to love God and others and to serve them instead of loving ourselves and our own pleasures. He also causes us to eagerly desire to hear and read His word.

A little over a year ago we moved back to Savannah. My mother had just died and Bubba and I decided to come back home to help take care of my father. That was not to be. He decided that he wanted nothing more to do with my husband and by rejecting him he also rejected me.

So....not serving my father as planned, but so many other opportunties have come my way.
I find this interesting and I thank my God for equiping me and working in me to do His will.

It still takes daily, sometimes hourly prayer...........but I am finding that in Him I do have a servant's heart.

humbled by His provision for me in my sin........


Thursday, July 16, 2009

thinking biblically about all things

Amanda is home from the hospital and doing quite well for all that she has been through in the last few weeks. The doctor said that everything went well and she should be on the mend very soon.

The kitchen is full of food and flowers due to the thoughtfulness of the people in their church. There is no need left unmet. We praise God for His provision.

I would like to write just a little bit tonight about biblical thinking and how doing such is so essential when you go through the trials of life.

God is sovereign over everything that happens in our lives. We do not go through life having things take us by chance or depending on luck. We don't go floundering around in a state of emotional upheaval.

Everything in a believer's life is perfectly planned out by God before we are even conceived. He knows the paths that we will take and everything in our life that we will need to grow spiritually. He leads us and guides us as we walk through the "valley of the shadow of death."

The most amazing thing is that when these times come we can go through them with the strength of the Holy Spirit helping us remember the truth of God's word and all of His promises to us.

We don't know why this baby was taken from us, but we know that it was God's will and plan altogether and we trust Him so much that we know it is right. Oh yes, there are tears, but in our hearts and minds there is peace.

A few weeks ago our pastor preached a long series on, "Do all Babies go to Heaven when they Die?" The answer is a definite yes proven by weeks and weeks of Scripture study. I have the tapes if you desire to hear them. What about that for timing? God knew we needed to know this truth.

All is well here because of God and His truth and His Son and the Holy spirit.

Praise God from whom all blessings flow.


Wednesday, July 15, 2009

great joy.....great sadness

We are back in Lanexa....arrived at 5:00pm. Had two lengthy delays on the requiring a long detour.

We arrived to find two wonderful little boys and a very sad and sick Amanda. She and Mark will make a very early drive up to Richmond for surgery in the morning. She will hopefully be able to return home in the later afternoon.

So many of you have been so kind with your comments and e-mails and phone calls and most of all the prayers. I cherish that you care. What good friends God has blessed me with!!

"Many, O lord my God, are the wonders which Thou hast done, and Thy thoughts toward us; there is none to compare with Thee. If I would declare and speak of them they would be to numerous to count." Psalm 40:5 (I love this verse)

May Amanda know Your peace and comfort tonight as she sleeps. Watch over her tomorrow as she goes to do what must be done. Bless and keep their little family in perfect rest in Thee.

Amen......come quickly Lord Jesus!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

my best friend grammy

We will be leaving early in the morning to drive to the Hollingsworth home.
Amanda will have a procedure under anesthesia at the hospital at 8:30 on Thursday morning.

In her sorrow today Amanda gave me a blessing.....she said that Jake would be glad to hear that I was coming...He has been referring to me as "his best friend grammy."

What a joy and a blessing these little guys are at a time like this.

As always, in sadness as well as gladness, I turn to His word......

"The salvation of the righteous is from the Lord; He is their stronghold in the time of trouble. The Lord helps them and delivers them." Psalm 37: 39 & 40

Oh God how precious Your promises are!
Help us to break through the sadness and sing praises to you!


sad news

Amanda and Mark have lost their baby.
She found out when she got to the doctor's office this morning.
Don't know much at this time...please keep them in your prayers.

God is good....all the time. God's ways are perfect at every juncture in life.
There is never a time when His mercies fail.


for amanda......

please offer up a prayer today.

She is losing weight and unable to eat. Those are the symtoms of hyperemisis.....the malady that goes along with Amanda's pregnancys. She is going to the doctor in a little while.

She is trying so hard to overcome, and we are hopeful that this time it will be different.
Please pray for Mark, Jake, and Eli as well as the church as they minister to her during this difficult time.

I will write again this afternoon....will let you know if there is any news.

thanks, cathy

Sunday, July 12, 2009

my new purse

On a lighter note (I wrote a previous post a little while ago), I want everyone to see my new purse. It is all yellow and ruffly with many nooks and crannies inside. I love it!

When Bubba saw it for the first time he was shocked. "I have never seen you with a purse like that, " he said. I didn't know whether that was a compliment or a, "I can't believe you would actually carry something like that around."

My challenge is to get and keep it organized. I try hard but it always ends up being a jumbled mess. Maybe at least I will be able to find my cell when it rings.

I found it at Anthropology by the way....for all you other lovers of that store.

Off to the beach to feed the birds some stale bread......


"His sovereignty rules over all"

The word of God did it's convicting work in my heart while I was sitting quietly listening to our pastor preach from the first chapter of Isaiah this morning.

"The Lord has established His throne in the heavens; and His sovereignty rules over all." Psalm 103:4

"Therefore the Lord God of hosts, the Mighty One of Israel declares, 'Ah, I will be relieved of My adversaries, and avenge Myself on My foes.' " Isaiah 1:24

In the last few posts I have commented on the crushing weight of sin and how it has destroyed my family. There is in my writings a pervasive sense of how this sin has affected me. Much to my dismay, I have not even thought about how this sin offends our great God.

Oh to be that person who chooses not to sin because it grieves and offends God ...... that I would never do, say, or think anything that would dishonor His name.

Hard work....but possible because of the Holy Spirit. Possible by abiding daily with Him in His word and ceaseless praying.

God has made provision for our sin in the person of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Out of our profound love for Him for His "indescribable gift" should flow naturally the desire to bring glory and honor to His name.

God always deals with sin.......I will wait for Him!!

Friday, July 10, 2009

after the storms.......

The blue is bluer....the green is greener.

Our beach has an absolute glow after the storms of the last few days. The sea is almost black with big, foamy, white waves rolling in to bring the high tide. Big balls of foam were blowing across the glittering sand as the slant of the setting sun caught all of it on fire. God, your creation is amazing.

Bubba and I went on a stroll down the beach just now to see if the Rushings were still encamped in the big house a few doors down, but there was no sign of them.

There have many many storms in my life in the last few years.........raging battles in my heart that could not be quieted. The truth about storms is that only God can calm them. They will rage until He speaks and only then will they die down.

"He made the storm be still, and the waves of the sea were hushed." Psalm 107: 29

The truth about life is that there will always be storms....storms in the atmosphere and storms in our hearts.
The miracle of my heart is that He is finally calming my storms.

It is hard work......."work out your salvation with fear and trembling" the Bible tells us. It requires much time in prayer and in His word. It requires much suffering. It doesn't come easily, but somehow you know that He is working in there.

That's were I am folks........... that's how I'm getting through the trials that I wrote about yesterday.

Today I stand in His grace and His grace alone.


Thursday, July 9, 2009

do they?..........yes they do

Daddys don't stop loving their little girls............. do they?
Sisters don't betray sisters.............. do they?
Families aren't split apart......are they?

The answer sadly is yes......for my earthly father, sister, family.

Why? The answer is most definitely sin.

I wrote earlier about the "crushing weight of sin" and I read this in God's word just now:

"For my iniquities are gone over my head; as a heavy burden they weigh too much for me." Psalm 38:4

"I am benumbed and badly crushed; I groan because of the agitation of my heart." Psalm 38: 8

This, dear readers, is where I stand with this hope:

"For I hope in Thee, O Lord; Thou wilt answer, O Lord my God." Psalm 38: 15.

I will wait and hope in His grace for Him to bring justice in this situation.


Tuesday, July 7, 2009

la wee pepe a la salon'

........ as the french would say

I took Lucy to my hair salon today to get her first professional haircut and style.
She was a perfect little lady in all ways. Keeping still for that crucial first snip was the only problem and that was quickly solved by a lady holding a book in front of her face for the duration.

A tootsie pop treat was given for good behavior and we were on our way. Lunch and a short stop by Target and then home for her nap.

I spent the later afternoon down the beach aways visiting with my friend Sandra and the whole Rushing clan. They have rented a big house right on the beach for this week and it was great to see everyone again after so many years.

Granddaughters and old friends.....what a nice way to spend a day.
Those blessings just keep on coming!!


Monday, July 6, 2009

the thirteenth week

She is my daughter....She is my friend. She carries herself well as a pastor's wife and as a mother.

Amanda is growing our fifth grandchild. We talk every day about how much better this pregnancy is than the last two. She is trying so hard to fulfill her responsibilities.......I admire her immense ability to go through trials with a good attitude. She is truly a blessing to me of rich value.

There aren't many Amanda's in this world.

The new baby is doing so well. An unexpected ultrasound last week showed her (?) doing sommmersaults in Amanda's belly.

By this, the thirteenth week, the baby has unique fingerprints on the tips of her tiny, well formed fingers......she is almost four inches long and weighs in at one and one fourth pounds.

Praise to God for this most priceless gift.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

up on the roof

Our condo stands three stories high but the elevator goes up to four......that would be the roof.

Last evening about nine o'clock Bubba said, "Let's go up on the roof and see if we can see the fireworks on River Street in downtown Savannah."

Now the roof is not for public use. When the elevator stops, there are two locked doors which must be traversed to gain access to the roof.

Feeling like this jaunt was completely out of character for my husband, I immediately said, "Let's go!"

Amazingly both of the supposedly locked doors were unlocked and we spilled guiltily out onto the tarred roof where we were treated to an amazing view of not only the River Street show, but also the fireworks at Hilton Head.

"Can we stay up here forever?"

Now I quite often write about those unexpected blessings from the Lord. Out of the blue an amazing firewworks show started up right on the beach in front of us.....incredible!!!! It was like we were a part of them.....that we could reach out and touch their beauty.

Blessed again with a lovely, beautiful, surprise up on the roof on a balmy, moonlit night with a gentle breeze.

Thank you God......


Saturday, July 4, 2009

from sea to shining sea

Independence Day, also commonly called "The Fourth of July," is a federal holiday celebrated in the United States of America commemorating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, declaring our independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain.

Today, as a nation, we are 233 years old.....relatively young as nations go.

We brought the day in last night on the sandy shores of beach Tybee.
It was a gorgeous evening.....

a not quite full moom shining out over the ocean making it gleam like glass
people homesteading on the sand with their families under makeshift tents....
gentle laughter, bursts of light from sparklers
a cool breeze blowing in with the heady smell of salt water.

I loved every minute of the fireworks....each burst of light filled our eyes with wonder, but more than that, seeing the light reflected in little Lucy's eyes. At times I thought she was more interested in playing in the sand at night.....but no, she loved and took it all in.

Today I rejoice because.....

Harry is home and their family is reunited
Our country is still free
We can worship and pray and read His word without fear

Oh, and by the way, Bubba found that good watermelon for me (I knew he would).......It is cold and delicious, just like the old days. It and I have been celebrating all day.

Have a Happy Fourth of July!!!!

added at 7:45 ~We just got home from getting our ribs and chicken at Johnny Harris.
Will be starting the "War and Remembrence" movies and eating lemon pie.
It was a throughougly lovely and relaxing day.

Friday, July 3, 2009

hello from harry

As you can see, Harry is awake and sitting up. This picture was taken a little while ago.
He will stay another night in in PEDICU and will likely be discharged in the morning.
He is still rather heavily sedated......a great time to get some good holding and loving in.

The fireworks at the beach are scheduled for this evening, so we, Lucy and Bubba and I, will make our way down to the beach with our chairs and take it all in.

Not being a fan of milling in large crowds, this means of celebrating suits just fine.

until later........

Thursday, July 2, 2009

praise God!

Harry is breathing on his own again~~~everything went well during the procedure.
Don't know any future plans at this time, but thought you would like to know.

"I will extoll You my God and my King, and bless Your name forever and ever. Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised, and His greatness is unsearchable."
Psalm 145: 1-3

"and His greatness is unsearchable!!!"

the big sister

Lucy is staying with us while Harry is in the hospital. We are trying to keep her life as normal as possible. This picture was taken just before she and her granddaddy left to go to Vacation Bible School. Looks like she is weathering it well.

till a little later,

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

can it really be....

July already?

Can little Harry really be laying in that bed hooked up to all of those machines again....still as death? Wasn't it just Sunday night after church that I was twirling him round and round and he was laughing hysterically at my antics?

Oh please God have mercy on him..... and on us as we try to live this life to bring glory to Your name. As we don't ask why to any of these trials that You have allowed to go on regularly in these last months and years, but trust You in them.

Many times, they seem much too difficult to bear, but somehow bear them we do because You are working Your will and purposes through these situations.

Tomorrow at 12:30 Harry will go to the operating room and the doctor will see if they can get him breathing on his own.

Let me repeat that verse from the other day:

"If God's law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my afflictions."

If not for the truth of God's word in my heart and mind, I could not live to face another day.

Please pray......

keep praying........

for Harry. There is no change this morning. He is doing a little more fighting this time....straining to get out from under the sedation. He is not one to lie quietly. He is the epitome of a little boy who loves to play and climb and run around. That is why this is so hard.

Lucy just left for Vacation Bible School very excited for what the new day may hold. I will post again later.....I want to share my thoughts on David's ordination.

please keep praying.....