Friday, September 8, 2017

Life is making decisions


This was certainly one of the highlights of the last couple of weeks for me!  We had all the kids and grandkids over on Labor Day weekend to celebrate my birthday!   We spent the entire day outside on our back patio.  It was really quite lovely.  We grilled some wonderful smoked pork tenderloin, made by Doug.  The kids had fun and Grace even took a nap! The adults actually got to talk to each other!  It was such a great day.   Here is a bonus picture of Grace with Grandpa....

We were especially thankful for the great weather that day BECAUSE of what has made these past weeks so interesting!  Ken and I have decided to finally bite the bullet and do some very much needed home improvement projects.  And the biggest project (so far) is to replace all of the flooring on the first floor.  This required us (and by us, I mean mostly Ken) to remove several layers of tile from the last 39 years!  What a big mess!  Complicating this process is the fact that we have a very small home and very little room to move things around.  I just have to keep reminding myself that it will be so nice when it is completed!  And since we are redoing the flooring, it makes sense to remove our very nasty kitchen cabinets at the same time and finally have an updated kitchen.

I thought that I was prepared for this project - but I had no idea how many decisions we would have to make!  Picking out the flooring was actually the easiest part.  We had to figure out how to remove the old tile.  How to dispose of all the garbage (a special plug for the Bagster Dumpster - it was simply amazing for us.  After purchasing the bag we decided to set it up inside our garage.  It worked great.  There is no time limit on the disposal so we could take as long as  needed to fill it up.  And just a couple days ago, we dragged it to the curb (with the help of the car) and they picked it up and hauled it away.  We will soon be starting on bag number two!)  Then suddenly we were talking about replacing all of the interior doors in our house.  And changing the doors to the laundry area.  Then it was figuring out if it made sense to replace our cabinets and then finding ones that would fit the space.  Each time we seemed to have things decided, one more thing would come up.

As of right now, we have a concrete floor in half of our downstairs and are close to actually starting to install the new floor.  We are still "in process" of preparing the floor (removing all of the adhesive and cleaning and sealing the concrete) but it finally feels like this new floor will get done! And then it will be on the kitchen cabinets!  Of course we need  a new counter top and back splash.  More decisions.  It would be nice to think that this would be the end of the project, but then it will be on to the other half of our downstairs and then drywall repairs and paint!  Have you noticed just how many colors of paint there are these days?  There is an entire aisle of paint chips to choose from.  My head is spinning just thinking about it.

I was thinking about how many times one decision you make ends up leading to more and more decisions.  You know what I mean - you decide to buy a car but then WHICH car?  And then what options and what color.  Even deciding on a vacation..... when, where - fly or drive.  It just never seems to end.  So many decisions.   If you were to stop and really think about all of the decisions you make in an average day, you would be astounded.  When to get out of bed, what to wear, what to eat, what route to take to work.  You get the idea.  Life is making decisions!

I was thinking about this song I Have Decided to Follow Jesus, by Elevation Worship.  The most important decision anyone can make.  I am personally so thankful for that decision that has changed everything about my life.  After listening to that song, all of the decisions we have to make about our home improvement project, every decision I make during the day - well, they all seem rather small and not nearly worth the worry that I have been putting into them.  It will not really matter, in the long run, what color flooring we use.  Or what cabinets we choose.  All of these are just THINGS.  Things that are here today but could be gone tomorrow.  With the current events - hurricanes, fires, floods, earthquakes - it is especially good to remember that.  Today I heard the Governor of Florida reminding the people that material things can be replaced.  Stay safe and keep your family safe.  Yes, tomorrow, as Ken and I are making yet another decision for this project, I will remind myself that this really doesn't matter in the long run.  And tonight, because I made that decision to follow Jesus, I will be thanking Him for all that He has provided for me - my family, my home my life.  

Jesus, thank you.  Thank you for your presence with me that brings peace, even during times of tough decisions.  Holy Spirit, continue to draw people into your great love and to know and follow Jesus.  Thank you for a renewed perspective on decision making.  Jesus, please keep all those in the midst of these disasters close to you.  Thank you for your great love.  Amen

Monday, August 28, 2017

Disasters separated by 27 years.....

 Today the news is "flooded" with all the pictures and stories out of Texas and Hurricane Harvey.  Thankfully there has also been plenty of stories of all of the helpers that have volunteered to aid those affected by this natural disaster.  The photos are simply unbelievable.  You just can't imagine 50 plus inches of rain in just one day.  The highways look like rivers!  As I scrolled through the many, many photos, I was praying for those who have lost all their possessions, their homes ......

And then I came across this post....

The 1990 Plainfield tornado was a devastating tornado that occurred on the afternoon of Tuesday, August 28, 1990. The violent tornado killed 29 people and injured 353. It is the only F5 tornado ever recorded in August and the only F5 tornado to strike the Chicago area. There are no known videos or photographs of this heavily rain-wrapped tornado. 

That day, 27 years ago, is one that I will never forget.  This is Doug, just a few weeks after this event.
On that day, I had gotten off of work early to take 8 year old Doug to a doctor appointment.  We had waited a very long time to see this particular specialist to check on Doug's vision.  He had taken so much medicine for his health issues as a baby and young child, there was concern that he may have had eye damage.  I picked Doug up from our neighborhood babysitter's house and we started the drive to the doctor.  He had a 3:30 appointment.  Now this was long before "Smart Phones" and instant weather forcasting...... really there was no way to "check the weather" (which we can now do very easily).  Looking at the sky was the only way to predict that a storm was brewing.

I was immediately worried by the dark and very ugly looking sky - that I was driving directly toward! The route to the clinic was heading right into the storm.  About half way there, the rain started.  And then came the hail.  Before we got much further, all the traffic signals went out, the power went out all around us and I decided to pull over.  I remember very clearly, that Doug calmly pointed out to me that the sky was an unusual shade of green!   This was the worst storm I had ever driven through.

By this time, I knew that we would not be making that doctor appointment.  I waited for a slight break in the blinding rain, turned the car around and headed back home ......thankfully AWAY from the storm.  When I finally reached the clinic on the phone the next day, I was told that they had lost power and part of their roof during that storm.  I felt thankful that Doug's appointment had been at 3:30 rather than 3:00.  We would have been in the middle of that storm.

I think about that day many times as we drive down that main road towards Plainfield.  A large church that was destroyed has been rebuilt, as have the schools that were destroyed.  But each time I look at those new buildings, I see, in my mind, those shells of buildings and trees torn out of the ground and buildings ripped in half,  that we witnessed in the weeks after that terrible tornado.

My home is about 15 miles away from that path of destruction from that tornado.  Thankfully, we had no damage at all from that storm.  As clear as my memory is of that day, I can only imagine the long term impact that Hurricane Harvey will have on the people of Texas.  Even those that might not personally have loss of property.  Everything in their day to day life has been disrupted and it will be chaotic for some time.  

I am so incredibly thankful for the advancements in weather forecasting over the last 27 years!  Thanks to cell phones with satellite mapping and weather radar, nearly every person can figure out if a storm will come near them.  We have instant weather alert apps on our devices that give us warnings that save so many lives.  And, we have more informed people in charge who can order mandatory evacuations when necessary.

Most of all, I am so thankful for the Good Shepherd who never leaves us or forsakes us. In those times of really terrible storms, Jesus is always right there with us.   Additionally, I am thankful for the Holy Spirit - living inside of me - who give me guidance and help in times of trouble.  It was that prompting of the Holy Spirit that kept me from driving into that storm.  

So tonight, as I sit in my dry home, really far away from Texas, my heart is there with those families.  My thoughts and prayers are with the Fire, Police, National Guard and all those involved in keeping the people safe.  I am praying for all those electrical workers, tree cutters, utility workers and many others who are driving in from far away states to aid in the clean up process.   I am praying for all of the humanitarian agencies, churches, and ministries that are sending teams of people to bring water, food, health kits and first aid to so many people.

Tonight, I am so thankful for all of the helpers.........

Jesus, bring your comfort and peace to anyone who is in an uncertain situation tonight - anyone who is fearful or angry or lonely or sad.  Holy Spirit, give wisdom and courage to all of the helpers.  Show them the best way to care for people who are so hurting.  Thank you for your great love for us.  Amen

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Legacy in some old dishes.....

Yesterday I caught an interesting discussion on the radio about the increased amount of dishes and other treasurers being donated to Goodwill.  There has been a 20% increase in the last few years.  The reason seems to be that the current "younger generations" have no use for the sets of "good china" or other items that were once stored in "china hutches".    There were several callers who told stories about discovering that their parents (or grandparents) china sets were worth thousands of dollars! Of course I was reflecting on my own very different situation.

When my mom first moved out of her house into an "independent living" apartment, she got rid of most of her dishes and many of her other "nick nacks".  I remember that she asked me if there was anything that I really wanted.  It was really easy for me to come up with a very short list......
I wanted the tree plate that was at the lake.  I wanted the grape plate that she used on "special occasions" and I wanted 4 of the glass "desert cups" that we always used.  Needless to say, she was shocked by my list.  Shocked because she could not imagine WHY I would want those particular items!
This is the tree plate.  I always asked to use this plate at the lake.  I just loved it.  I found out from my mom (when she gave me the plate) that this was a supermarket give away from Council Oaks Grocery Store sometime in the 1950's.  She couldn't believe that I wanted this old thing.  
This is the grape plate.  My mom couldn't really remember anything about where this even came from.  She never really liked it, but it has sort of raised edge so things stay on the plate when you pass them.  I especially remember deviled eggs being served on this plate.  My mom pointed out that it was kind of chipped and really shouldn't be used anymore.  I still wanted it.  
The last things were these glass dishes.  She laughed at me for wanting these.  They actually were "jelly jars"  - filled with jams and jelly purchased at the grocery store and then cleaned and kept for use.  I remember many, many servings of tapioca pudding from these!  

So yes, these items are still sitting in my china hutch.  And I don't actually use them at all.  But I like knowing that they are there.  The radio conversation got me thinking, however, about the fact that soon enough I will be trying to get rid of all of MY stuff as we begin to downsize.  I do own a set of "good china" but we never used it.  It sits unused in the cabinet.  I do have a few crystal pieces that do get used - on holidays or other family gatherings.  But I am fairly certain that neither of my kids will have any interest in those items.... or the ones that I got from my mom.  Times have really changed, that is for sure.  Alas, I think most of my things will find their way to Goodwill!

It was really nice to take these items out of the hutch and hold them in my hands (to take these pictures)!  Each one of them made me smile.  There is something very powerful about holding an item in your hands, remembering the other hands that once held them.   So unlike those callers on the radio this morning, my dishes have no monetary value.  But the memories and the connections of these items to my mom and dad are very real and so very valuable.   I remember all of the wonderful meals my mom cooked at the lake - in very primitive conditions.   I think about those special holiday dinners when I would see that grape plate on the table covered with some special treat.  And oh the special puddings and deserts those glasses held.  

I am really sorry that I never used these special plates and dishes with my own kids.  They will not have any memories of them and will most likely not want them.  And that makes me sad.  I also am trying to imagine if there is anything that they might want out of my very crowded hutch!  After this past weekend of scrapbooking family events, I am extremely grateful that we have made it a priority to make lots of memories through activities!  And I am also very thankful for all of those scrapbooks!
Even if my dishes and my mom's dishes end up in Goodwill some day, my children and grandchildren will have photographic reminders of many great family times.  It might not be a plate they are holding in their hands, but it will be pictures of  all of us having lots of fun together.  

Yes, the value of legacy is much more than dollars and cents.  There is really no way to put a price on memories.  While my treasured legacy items may not be worth much money, they are filled with memories.  And every page of my scrapbooks are also priceless!  

Take some time to consider what legacy you are leaving.  More than likely the best legacy you can leave does not have much monetary value.  Think about the good times you have had with friends and family.  Remember those special times - maybe just doing nothing but being together.  Look at some pictures - or take some pictures!  Slow down and talk and listen to those you love.   Tell those younger than you about the "good old days".  Create a legacy, one story at a time! 

I love that the Bible is God's legacy to us.  It is a love story filled with events that all connect together.  One story leads to the next story and reveals a wonderful "rescue plan" (as my grandchildren love to call it) in Jesus.  The faithfulness of God is shown to us over and over on each page of the book.  That is a truly priceless legacy!

Jesus, thank you for my family - my mom and dad and siblings and thank you for Ken, and my kids and grandchildren.  Holy Spirit help us to build a lasting legacy for our families, not of things but of stories and memories.  Remind us all to stay grounded in your amazing legacy - the Bible.  Amen

Monday, August 21, 2017

My kind of camping......

Now this is my type of camping!  Grace had a great time with her mommy, her auntie and me while we were scrapbooking!  This little camping chair will be used for real "camping" with mommy and daddy in the future, but this weekend it was Grandma Lyn's type of camping - 4H camping (Hilton, Hyatt, Holiday Inn, Hampton.... well you get the idea!).  Grace did so well for the entire weekend.  She ate, slept  and played like a champ!  Her cousins came for a visit and we all went swimming in the hotel pool.  The pool was a bit cold for Grace but she spent a small amount of time playing in the water.   Meanwhile, the adults all managed to get some serious scrapping done!

These weekend get away times are so good for me.  Even though I managed to eat more junk food than I should and sometimes stay up much later than normal, I come away feeling rested and revitalized.  I am so blessed by this group of women!  Although we are all a diverse group, it is wonderful time of laughter, talking, sharing and fun.  Everybody needs these times to just stop and breathe out.  And to also breathe in!

Last Wednesday at my small group, we talked about slowing down and not getting into the habit of being so busy. Taking a breath that calms us.   At a recent HUB meeting (my Sunday night "church") they played a song that I was not familiar with.  The chorus of that song went like this....

River of God flood over me and lift my feet off of the ground
Carry me out into your sea and in Your presence I'll be found

The song really touched me and as the chorus played over and over, I very clearly heard "I will carry you into my SEE!!  Wow!  Doesn't that change the entire meaning of that verse?  When so much of the world - our news, what we read on the internet - is so challenging, it feels like waves of darkness just pouring over us.  But if we stop and breathe in Jesus, it is is HIS river of the Holy Spirit that will flood over us.  And when our feet are lifted off of the ground, we won't just be carried out to sea....we will be LIFTED UP into that place where we can SEE from the Lord's perspective!  From that place, things just don't look so dark and/or so bad.  Now that is a breather that so many of us really need!

During my weekend scrapbooking, I had a really odd thing happen.  My current scrapbook that I am working on, just sort of "exploded".  The pins that hold the pages together must have been defective.  During the night the book blew apart and all of the pages scattered on the floor with the back cover on one side of the chair and the front cover on the other side of the chair!  When I looked closer I noticed that the pins were actually bent and broken.  I was not very happy about this, since putting those slippery, plastic pages into the correct order and keeping them that way is no easy task!  Fortunately, I had happened to bring along some extra pins for the album.  So I was able to recreate the album with a bit of work.   I was thinking about the amount of pressure that it took to break that book and how much pressure so many people are feeling right now.  It seems like the message to breathe and allow the river of God to lift us up to see the truth of things from Jesus' perspective (not the news media) and to spend time just basking in the presence of Jesus, is the only thing that will keep us from exploding!  I for one, am very grateful for the timeliness of this message.

The weekend away highlighted just how much pressure I had been feeling building inside of me. I was able to step away and breathe and consider how much I need the presence of Jesus to change my viewpoint and be refreshed and revived.  The scrapbooking sure helped me blow off some steam also!
Whether you are a true "camper" or like me, prefer hotels, I highly recommend time away to breathe in the presence of Jesus.  Things sure look much brighter when you return to your daily routine!

Jesus, thank you for the reminder that you are watching over all of us.  You flood us with your love and your peace.  More than that, you lift us up to help us see things with your eyes.  Holy Spirit, bring us into places and times of rest so that we can breathe in your presence and also release those pressures of our world.  Thank you Jesus for time spent with friends and family.  Amen

Thursday, August 10, 2017

No matter what, safe inside His hands...


Today I snapped this amazing picture of sweet Grace with Lucas Bear.  (This special bear was created in honor of Grace's big brother Lucas - you can read about Lucas here).  Grace is six months old! The time has gone by so fast and it is amazing to see her grow and change.  Lately it seems like she has some new accomplishment every day.  As I took this picture all I could think about was this song...Hills and Valleys by Tauren Wells.  Being with Grace is certainly a reminder of those "Mountain Top" times.  And the lose of Lucas was a valley time for our entire family.   Please stop and listen to this incredible song.   It grabs you from the opening line.....

I've walked among the shadows, you wiped my tears away.  I've felt the pain of heartbreak, and I've seen the brighter days.  I prayed prayers to heaven from my lowest place, and I've held your blessings....

The point of the song is captured in the title "Hills and Valleys"....  You're the God of the hills and the valleys and I am not alone!   Wow!  Is there any message that is more needed right now?  Yes, God is the God of the good times and the bad times.  He is the joy bringer and the pain taker.  He does give and take away.  He gives blessings and takes away our pain and sorrow.   I love the line that says...
No matter what, I am safe inside His hands!

Once again, a song that just resonates with me.  And when I look at this picture, it is like seeing the words of that song.  We have certainly had our hills and valleys since 2014.  But I can say, with full assurance, that I know that Jesus was with me through it all.  He was there in the valley and it was His grace that has taken my pain.  When my dreams were broken, it was Jesus that gave me hope.  
Such truth in a song.  When we are in those mountain top places,when things are going so well,  when everything seems wonderful.... we need to remember that it was God who brought us there.  He is the God of the hills.   When we are in those really tough places, WE ARE NOT ALONE!  Jesus is right there with us, walking through those valleys.  No matter where we are on life's path, no matter what is going on, our companion is Jesus.

The chorus of this wonderful song says....
On the mountains I will bow my life to the one who set me there.
In the valley I will lift my eyes to the one who sees me there.
When I'm standing on the mountain I know I didn't get there on my own.
When I'm walking through the valley, I know I'm not alone.  

Yes, this picture of Grace and Lucas Bear is a picture of the hills and valleys.  It is also a picture of love and hope and so much joy and blessing! 

Jesus, thank you for another amazing song and for Tauren Wells.  Thank you for the reminder that you are always with us - in good times and in hard times.  Holy Spirit, encourage us to lift our eyes to Jesus when it seems dark and hard and remind us who brought us into those mountain top places. Thank you Jesus for Grace and Lucas.  Amen

Sunday, August 6, 2017

When there is another generational "shift".....

 This photo is one of my all time favorites.  My mom, my daughter, my granddaughter and me.  I am so thankful that we got that picture when Lia was just a few months old.  So tonight, sitting here at my computer, (thanks to the marvels of modern technology), I experienced another "Generational Shift".  I just watched as Lia was leading worship for a youth praise service at her church.  As I was watching her, I was flashing back to sitting in a pew with my mom, watching Gwen lead worship when she was just a bit older than Lia is now.  And I was remembering my mom watching with tears in her eyes.

I took a couple of screen shots of the video, just to capture this moment.  Besides singing, Lia also played keyboard on a couple of songs. That last picture is Gwen and Lia at the keyboard.  Suddenly, I am the grandma with tears in her eyes.  It is one thing to know that your children and grandchildren love the Lord, it is quite another thing to see them publicly express that love.  I am so grateful that Lia has a place to grow as a worship leader. Right now, she looks like a baby compared to the other youth leading worship.  But in several years, she will be the leader welcoming new youth to the stage.  I love this "mentoring" model that keeps building for the future by bringing the youngest youth into the group.  I can imagine many years watching Lia at the microphone, or the keyboard, or dancing....well you get the idea.  She is a performer for sure. And I love that she is able to grow in her gifting.

On Friday I had the opportunity to watch both Lia and Ellie perform in an musical after a week at "Spotlight" Camp.
Both Lia and Ellie had some speaking parts and both sang at the microphone by themselves.  They sang and danced in many songs.  It was really amazing what they can accomplish in 5 short days with these kids from 6-12 years old.  While Lia looks like she is loving every minute that she is on stage, it was not so much for Ellie.  She has a big smile here, AFTER the performance.  She did so well with all of her songs, dances and speaking part and solos, but she was just not loving it.  Ellie will be a wonderful behind the scenes person.  She will be the one designing the costumes, arranging the hair and makeup, finding just the perfect accessory for the performers to wear.  And mostly, she will be holding a hand of someone dealing with stage fright, she will be hugging someone else who isn't feeling well.  She will be everyone's friend and will make sure that everyone has something to eat and drink.  Because, well, that is just who Ellie is.  Seeing just how different these two girls are, is a great reminder that there is a plan, a purpose and destiny for each of us.  

Just imagine how many more worship leaders, teachers, pastors and evangelists, how many more "good samaritans", helpers, intercessors, greeters, ushers, servers we would have if we started to encourage these obvious gifts of the children around us.   So often adults decide that children need to wait to "grow up" before they can use their gifts.  But I think this is a mistake. Watching Lia on the stage tonight confirmed that for me.  

Yes, it was a night when I felt that shift of the generations.  Looking back, but also looking ahead.  I love that I can get a glimpse of the  amazing working of the Lord as I see the potential in each of my grandchildren.  I challenge you to look around you at the children, youth and young adults you encounter. Look at the adults around you also!   Look beyond their clothes or their hair style, ignore their tattoos or piercings, and see the marvelous gifts and talents that they have.  Encourage them, mentor them.  Give them a place and means to use those talents.  You will be blessing them....but you will be blessed also!

Jesus, thank you for Fellowship of Faith and Boulder Ministry.  Holy Spirit, give us all reminders to look for ways to mentor and  encourage those around us.  Help us to see the unique gifts and talents that you have given to each person.  Keep us from trying to put others into places that just don't fit them.  Jesus, help us all to know that you have a plan, a purpose and a destiny for each of us!  Amen


Thursday, July 27, 2017

When that "Aha" moment brings you truth.....

You know how it is when so many little things just kind of come crashing together and give you one of those "Aha" moments?  Well, I sort of had one of those times today.  Backing up a bit, on Sunday Ken and I went with all the kids and grandkids to the waterpark.  It was a wonderful day spent swimming and playing that ended with pizza at Doug and Susie's house.  It was Grace's first time in the water and she loved it.  Here is a bonus picture of the kids.....

 After that event, I happened to be talking to one of my friends about swimming, being at the lake, and my mom.  So of course, I was thinking about my mom.  The picture at the top of this blog is my mom and (a much younger version) of me, taken at Lake Maud.  I was reflecting on the fact that being at "the lake" was not much of a vacation for mom.  Our cabin was "primitive"  - we didn't have running water until I was 5, no hot water until I was 6, no indoor bathroom until after I was married!
And we always seemed to have lots of people around who needed to be fed.  And the clothes needed to be washed.  And the dishes needed to be washed.  And my dad always had some project that he needed help with. And well, you get the idea.  Not much fun for mom.  And during my grade school years, she was working full time!  So all of those weekend trips to the cabin, just made more work for my very tired mom.  But she knew that having the cabin would give us kids a wonderful place for fun that would not have been possible without owning the cabin.  It was a sacrifice that she made for all of us.

So my mom was on my mind this week.  Then on Wednesday, Susie asked me to give Grace a new food to try.  Peas from their garden that Susie had made into baby food and frozen.  The second I defrosted the cube of peas, I smelled that heavenly aroma of the garden and fresh picked peas.  I was immediately back in Aunt Avis' wonderful garden near Lake Maud, picking peas to bring to my mom.  They were one of her favorites!  Another wonderful memory of being at Lake Maud!  (Bonus picture of Grace eating her peas!)

Then last night, not surprisingly, I had a dream about my mom.  It was interesting because in my dream, she was singing!  Although she loved music and always sang in choirs when she was younger, I don't remember her doing much singing.  She always said her voice got bad "when she got old" and I guess that she was "old" my entire life.  She talked about singing, but she never did sing.   In my dream she was singing beautifully - one of her very favorite hymns... "What a Friend we have in Jesus".  I woke up this morning with that song playing over and over in my head.  

Now for the "Aha moment" I mentioned at the start of this blog.   This morning my phone alerted to a text message from my small group.  One of my dear friends wrote this message to us......

"This morning I was listening to a preacher's sermon who was really engaging with the Spirit and heartily preaching God's word, when all of a sudden he broke out in the song "What A Friend we Have in Jesus".  He kept saying, JESUS, JESUS, JESUS.  God whispered two things as I listened to him repeating Jesus' name.... 1.  Satan trembles at the name of Jesus uttered by a child of God when it is done in reverence.  2.  What amazing friends we have as our prayer partners pray on behalf of each other and call on Jesus.  That old devil trembles.  The preacher said, "When Satan trembles, that is the time to attack him with the Word of God! When we do, he retreats and we keep at it in the strength of the Lord." 

Clearly there was something - some message in this for me.  But I was sure not connecting all of the pieces.  That is until I sat down at my computer this evening and looked at the full lyrics of that song.  I knew the first three verses of the song, but don't think I ever knew the fourth verse.  As a matter of fact, I couldn't find any video of the song with this fourth verse.  Yet it is written in the original song.  Here it is.....
Blessed Savior thou hast promised, thou will all our burdens bear.
May we ever Lord be bringing, all to thee in earnest prayer.
Soon in glory bright unclouded, there will be no need for prayer.
Rapture, praise and endless worship, will be our sweet portion there.

Isn't it just exactly like Jesus to bring me so much truth and comfort in one simple song?  So much in that song - the power of the name of Jesus.  The benefit of bringing all of our concerns and cares to Jesus.  How powerful it is to surround yourself with prayer partners who stand with you and pray when you are unable to even utter the words.  How amazing the very name of Jesus is and the impact that His name has for us.  And the reminder that His promises are true.  What an amazing reward awaits us, praise and endless worship!   All I can say is that I am incredibly thankful right now.  So thankful for my mom, for my kids and grandchildren, for my wonderful praying friends, for Jesus and all that he does for us, for what is to come!  

I woke up this morning really missing my mom.  That is not unusual for me.  But I am ending today with a big smile - knowing that my mom is in that place of endless worship and praise, singing her heart out!   What an amazing gathering together of little things to bring me this message of truth.  What a friend we have in Jesus!

Jesus, thank you for using all of these things to remind me just how much you love each one of us.  Thank you for music, for songs, for lyrics that speak after 162 years.  Holy Spirit, nudge us when we forget how powerful prayer is.  Help us to use the name of Jesus to fight off the attack of the enemy.  Thank you for connecting us together as we pray for each other.  Amen