Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Family forever

Family forever is a thought that's been running through my mind for some days. It especially got there with the holidays. Looking at parts of the family that are still fractured can be painful. One thing I thought as I visited my brother Dale and his wife Jayne is how much I treasure my brothers and sisters. We definitely don't qualify as a close family. We all pretty much scattered away as teenagers, me marrying young, (the first time) Charles, Dale and Jeannine all working very young and doing their own thing. Charles was very young to be a husband and father at age 18 but he's done it well, all and all. My thought is, that there could never be anything that my family does or doesn't do that I wouldn't at least say, "Hi, how are you doing? I love you."
That may not mean that we'll hang together or do much else, but at least they know that they are loved.
Family forever is really something you can't get away from because it's in the blood and DNA. Of course, we know since I had my DNA test that not everyone got everything that everybody else got. LOL! I am truly EVERYWOMAN! And that being said, one of my main prayers for myself is that I can live well, and be the very best me, that the Lord created me to be. And I have to come back to what Peggy always said, "You can pick your friends but not your family," and that's cool too. Because the Lord God Almighty gave us the family He intended for some strange reason, I guess. And for our destiny, I believe.
 I've picked some pretty awesome friends along the way and a few have even told me they chose me upon seeing me for the very first time. How cool is that? Truly I don't understand why but I have always felt very honored by that statement and you know who you are girlfriend.
I have all the hope in the world for all of my family. I may not live to see some of my prayers for them answered but every day, I pray, "Thy will be done, Thy kingdom come for the destiny of the ones I love." Bill and I were talking to Pastor John recently and he said, basically that in some cases, family comes together finally but it may be at someone's funeral, and why wait until then to make it right? He's a very wise man, I must say.
But it's out of my hands and into the Lord's. I'm praying very hard for a new start for many of us.
So to complete this blog and I hope the pictures post at some point, I took the night off last night as Ryan did such a great job taking Aryel and Isaiah for the day I gave him the night shift, too. Actually I was exhausted from the holidays and just needed to chill. At some point I heard hilarious laughter drifting up the stairs. Bill and I came down to find Ryan looking like a sick calf at the table, and everyone laughing their heads off. They were playing Bean Boozled with jelly beans that tasted like, among other things: stinky socks, barf, lawn clippings, dead fish, rotten eggs... and well you get the picture. They had jelly beans the same color and it would either be the good flavor, chocolate pudding or the bad like canned dog food and you pick one and eat it. Well Ryan always picked the bad ones and Aryel always picked the good ones. It was hilarious.
Christmas is officially over and we can get back to "normal" life. Oh yes, normal is just a setting on the dryer in our family. So, heading to a new year fills with the Love, and never-ending kindness of the Lord.

Since ancient times no one has heard,
    no ear has perceived,
no eye has seen any God besides you,
    who acts on behalf of those who wait for him. Isaiah 64:4

Thursday, December 22, 2016

She’s Canceling Christmas

Merry Christmas and I’m posting early for those who follow my blog. If you  don’t please go to http://thornrose7.blogspot.com/ and sign up.  It may help me out one day if I ever submit a book proposal.

I just finished the Angels Walking Series by Karen Kingsbury. It has made me think more about angels and the roles they play on earth. I’m hoping that there are many guardian angels about us to help us in ways that we may not realize. I also included in this poem a phrase borrowed from a Jim Raley sermon; battered worship. To those whose worship is worthy of the Lord’s ear.  He is pleased.

She’s Canceling Christmas

The angels were alarmed, “There’s another mom on the edge.
She’s ready to leave everything and everyone.
What can we do?
Lord, is it really true?
She’s canceling Christmas this year!”
Somebody’s mom:
I’m canceling Christmas this year!
Why have it
When there’s so many tears?
Why try to pretend
It will be good at the end?
I’m canceling Christmas this year.

Makes me sadder
Than sad ever was
It’s Christmas but not the night that Twas.

If you knew all the pain,
You’d cancel it too,
Looking for light and the Lord
Hasn’t come through.
Makes me sadder
Than sad ever was
It’s Christmas but not the night that Twas.

The world thinks
Christmas is all about them
Many people are
Consumed with,
Rushing about,
Buying, and wanting gifts
While heartache abounds.

Living life through a phone
Instead of talking
With those nearby,
How will they feel when they’re gone?
One day they’ll wish
That conversation
Will linger on.

Makes me sadder
Than sad ever was
It’s Christmas but not the night that Twas.

This mom just got tired
Of the constant strife
She just needed a break
From her own “real life.”

Her tears stormed heaven
As a trumpet song given,
A battered, wounded sound
Came as she lay prostrate
On the ground.
Then the Lord was pleased
With her battered worship to Him.
He put a crew of angels to work right then.

One angel sent a song,
Another sent a friend with hugs,
One sent a book,
For a fiction vacation,
A temporary
Break from this world.

Back when angels came singing
Jesus was bringing
Hope for a deep, dark world.
The enemy roars,
But he won’t win any more;
  Angels are surrounding the door,
Of  her simple abode.
They’ve taken this load,
Put her on a
Different road.

Prayers were given,
Because she’s
Held up by friends,
The mom is renewed,
Now she’s Celebrating Christmas too,
Saying a Merry Christmas to you!

Donna Collins Tinsley 2016

Sunday, December 11, 2016

I'm always happy to review a fellow Word Weaver's book. Linda D. Schoonover wrote An Illusion of Normal

Linda D, Schoonover is a woman on a mission to bring to light the affects mental illness can have on a family and especially children in her book, An Illusion of Normal.

I'm drawn to this story as at the beginning it's through the eyes of a child. Oh the pain that some children have to endure on this earth as emotions and chaos reign because of mental illness. It looked like at first, Linda might have an escape route via being sent to her grandmother's house for a season.

I love how the little girl watches her grandmother in all aspects of life. She wonders why she prays certain ways and is very vocal about the only way she's heard God's name used previously. The conversation in Chapter Seven between Linda and her grandmother was priceless. Chapter Eight wrenched my heart as sometimes, I've found the familiar home of a grandparent feels like balm to a child's heart.

What a powerful ending for Chapter Nine:

"God, please help me not be scared. I don’t know what’s wrong with my mother and I don’t know for sure if anyone is outside my window, but if you’re there, could you please help me?

I shut my eyes and tried to ignore my mother waiting quietly in the dark for her killer’s return."

In Chapter Ten the phrase,
"A knot set up camp in my stomach. The Ferris wheel stopped at the top and I hung on the mercy of someone I couldn’t trust." blew me away. Linda is a master communicator.  

 Chapter Fourteen is priceless. Only a child could have precious, untarnished faith to believe for that miracle and it was totally mind-blowing.

One of the most poignant parts of the book was in Chapter Twenty-five:
 I laid on the wet grass and closed my eyes.
“Did you make a mistake, God? If you did, it’s okay. I just want to know. I won’t be mad, I promise. But God, could you please find me another place to live? Anywhere is okay, so long as it’s a place where people really want me.”

Later her brother gave us a glimpse into a different side of the dad than portrayed earlier in the book. I loved reading the description of an earlier part of life that perhaps Linda didn't know about until her brother described it to her.

When talking about her  grandmother after she died: "A few days after we buried her in the family plot next to Grampy, something sprang up from inside me, like a seed when it slowly and confidently breaks through the dirt. I wanted to be like her. Strong, caring, hardworking. I wanted to love God like she did. To take care of and rescue people caught in disasters, not necessarily of their own choosing. To cook and serve Sunday dinners in a house where everybody felt welcome and at home. I wanted to be a grandmother like her, a grandmother that changed lives. But more than anything, I wanted her to be proud of the person she always knew I was and would be." I know that Linda has made her grandmother proud.

I enjoyed the letters from Linda's brother and the overview about Viet Nam as she got older. Drama seemed to follow her and her family though.

The life-long effect of childhood trauma that Linda described in the epilogue  was among my favorite parts of the book. I'm proud of the work Linda is doing to help children and bring us knowledge about mental illness in the family. Normal, at last, has become more than an illusion for her.