Wednesday, September 11, 2013


I've never been one to consider rest as a spiritual activity.

Until Now!

We just came back from a deliciously marvelous ten day vacation! We drank deeply from the peace offered us each and every day!

Some will find it incredible that we got into the car, left Florida and traveled ten hours in order to vacation at..............the BEACH!  But that's exactly what we did.  Why would you leave the vacation capital of the world?  Why leave a peninsula surrounded by some of the most magnificent beaches known to man?

Well, here it is.  Mom and Dad Hawley still live in NC.   Dad was to have a pace-maker replaced on that Wednesday.  (Certainly not life threatening; but a procedure we wanted to be there for, if possible.)

It comforted our hearts to pull into the driveway and see for ourselves that he was sitting up watching a favorite show that very evening.

We were able to laugh and talk and cheer his great recovery progress in person for a change.  And we liked that!

Frank's brother, Terry and his wife Pam graciously allowed us to crash for the night at their house.  (They've managed to find room for the wandering part of the Hawleys for many years now.)

Mom went with us to "Sherry's Bakery: the Sweetest Corner in Dunn" for breakfast on Thursday.  We sat around talking with Frank's Aunt Mary. (She and her husband started the bakery over thirty years ago.)  Then other relatives began dropping by as it often happens in small towns.

In fact, if you sit at the front table of Sherry's Bakery looking out at Wilson St., you can almost convince yourself that you're in an episode of the Andy Griffith Show.  Dunn has the same feel as Mayberry in many ways.  I've always loved that!

Then after spending more time with Dad, we headed the Tahoe toward Ocean Isle Beach!  We could almost feel the weights falling off as we drove.

Now, don't get me wrong.  We LOVE our lives here in FL!  We LOVE our church family!  We LOVE the gift of having adult children all around us!  We especially LOVE having perfect grandchildren close enough to hug and kiss at random moments in the week!

But sometimes it's important to just make time for the Original Twosome!

Frank did a great job of only checking his phone each evening while we were away.  I must admit, I checked mine a little more frequently.  Work in progress!

"What did you do?!"  "What did you go see?!"  "Where did you shop?!"  "What museum/landmark did you visit?!"  I can hear your questions - the same questions I ask friends returning from vacation.

The answer is simple: NOTHING!  We did absolutely nothing!  And as was stated earlier, it was deliciously marvelous!

Frank and I have discovered the wonder of - the Beach Umbrella!  This one colorful contraption allowed us to sit for hours at a time engaged in our favorite vacation activities: 
  • Listening to waves splash on shore.  
  • Watching people.  
  • Feeling the wind rush all around.  
  • Squishing warm sand between our toes.  
  • Hearing birds cry and babies giggle.  
  • Drinking in the soothing rays of sun.  (After significant slathering of spf50 sunscreen!) 
  • Holding hands.
  • And READING!  We both read to our hearts' content.
I finished a book I'd been working on for some time then dove headfirst into the sequel.  The second novel concluded with a bang on the next to the last day.

Deliciously Glorious!

We did see a few friends (totally necessary when you're a people person!)  We did preach for three different services on Sunday morning.  And Frank even baptized a man who had driven from KY to be baptized in the ocean.

Other than that, we slowly ate at a few favorite restaurants.  We drove by places we'd known while living in OIB.  We took in a show.  Napped.  Watched the sun rise over the ocean nearly every morning.  And then read some more.

Boring by the standards of some.  But deliciously glorious for two tired preachers who needed to reconnect with the Father and with one another.

That's why I've been a little slow about writing.  But I did think of an acrostic to describe our time away:





After much conversation on the topic, Frank and I are planning to engage in a little more of the Required Effective Spiritual Training next year!

(I'd love to read your acrostic version of the word REST!)


  1. So very happy you had such a restful time. Much, MUCH needed for you two!

    May the vacation glow continue . . .


    1. Thanks, my friend! Great post about the shower. Such wonderful pictures, too. Praying healing for you!

  2. This just sounds like the perfect vacation in a really beautiful place.

    Could you share the titles of the 2 books you read.

    1. It was, Judy! I'm reading the Galway Series by the Thoenes. Awesome! It starts with ONLY THE RIVER RUNS FREE and ends with ALL RIVERS TO THE SEA. Hope you check out all four!

    2. Thank you so much.