Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Of Thankful Hearts and Harps

Thank you for so many kind, encouraging words about the 300th post - The Christmas Cookies!

God's miracles really do need to be rehearsed and celebrated, don't they?  Maybe that story will encourage you to jot down a few of your own family miracles.  We all have them to tell!  And our children need to know about God's faithfulness.  His personal involvement in the life of their family!

My hope is to record one such miracle every month for the coming year.  Our family has spent A LOT of time in the "miracle zone" through the years.

Your response to the cookie story made me realize how much our miracles need to be shared.  So be watching for those in the coming weeks.  (There.  It's in print and I'm now accountable to you!)

I certainly hope everyone found some special joys during their Thanksgiving week!

We all converged on my dad's home place.  My family complete with three adult children, two additional spouses, two perfect grandchildren.  My sister's family with two teenagers and a ten year old.  Can you say, crowded?!

This was Nathan's first visit there. Along with Spencer and Abby, of course.  (It's much easier for Papaw to drive to Winter Haven than for Winter Haven to drive to Papaw.)

We were especially thankful to be in Florida so that everyone could ramble and roam the entire ten acres.  My sister's three children were fascinated with Spencer and Abby.

Spencer had his own personal transportation team for all things boyish: running, yelling, throwing, even rough-housing.  He was in Heaven!  And Abby got plenty of attention, too!

Dad's house is rather small.  It started out as a fishing cabin some thirty years ago.  Then in 2006, he and mom decided to move there permanently.  They added two large bedrooms down one side and a dining room/sun room across the back.

We are ALL thankful that Mom insisted on a second bathroom!

And did I mention that FL weather makes the outdoors accessible for most of the year?!  Thankful for that too!!

It was a crowded, crunching, toe-stepping, forgiving time.  But we were all glad for the opportunity to be together.

One funny story that I have to share -

It's our tradition to go around the table at Thanksgiving and share what we are thankful for from the past year.  Even little ones are prompted and encouraged to give thanks to God.

As we circled the table, two things became apparent about 2012:  God had been faithful to all our family and we were all missing Mom.   (She moved to Heaven four years ago.  Unbelievable!)

Dad had the final word for the day.  He took a deep breath and began to share his heart as we listened carefully.  Words of blessing and affirmation have been awkward for my dad through the years.  Since Mom's passing, we've all come to understand the importance of saying what we wish we could TODAY.  Tomorrow isn't guaranteed.

Dad talked for some time about how thankful he was we were all together.  How proud he is of each one.  He choked up as he talked of God's faithfulness to us as a family.  And he wrapped up his comments by saying, "I attribute most of this to the one who isn't here today!"   (Meaning Mom.)

He bowed his head as tears dripped onto his plate.  Everyone around the table was touched; many of us swiping at our own eyes.

And then it happened -

A sound.  An unfamiliar sound.  My sister and I shot quizzical looks at one another from across the table.  Was that........wasn't that.......were we hearing........a harp sound?  Really?!  Yes, ummm.  Definitely a harp!  Everyone could hear it but no one knew what to say.

Finally realization hit me and a huge smile spread across my face.  Here's what happened. 

My phone was on a counter in the kitchen.  We have very little reception inside my dad's house so we don't pay much attention to our cell phones until checking messages.   It just so happened that this one time, my phone was close enough for us to hear the text message alert when it sounded.

My alert sound?  You guessed it - a harp!
Mom would have absolutely rolled with laughter!  And who knows, maybe she did!



  1. wonderful story. to often we dont tell those we love that we do or often enough and we dont count our blressings ner enuf.

  2. Laughing here about the harp! Oh, Sheri, my heart just filled to overflowing as you described your Dad speaking. Sounded like mine who's been with the Lord since 1999. He missed Mom for 21 years before he joined her in heaven, but he continued to live life with joy in the in-between.

  3. Thank you for sharing your dad's precious words, I too was swiping away tears as I read it.