(Journal Entry from Ecuador)
Just last week when refreshment time came at the end of our first Bible study for English-speaking women here in Ecuador, I asked for my friend Pat to pass the hot chocolate mix. Her question was, “Do you want the kind with marshmallows?” And immediately, I thought, “Of course! Life is too short to leave off the marshmallows!” I heard the “life is too short” phrase repeatedly in my growing up years, and it was very graphically demonstrated and illustrated when my mother died quickly and unexpectedly at the age of 55. Mother was the type of lady who didn’t “save her best perfume for special occasions.” She splashed it on generously on a daily basis. In fact, the thing that my youngest daughter (who was 7 when she died) remembers about her most was that “she always smelled so good.” She also planned the dessert first when inviting company over for a meal. She figured you could always figure out the meat and vegetables later, but that wonderful last sweet taste was supposed to be memorable . . . and worth her grocery money and her time in the kitchen. In the first months after her death, my Dad said on a number of occasions things like “I’m so glad we went ahead and made that trip to Israel . . . or Hawaii . . . or wherever,” and “It makes me feel so good that I replaced her lost diamond ring last Christmas,” and “For some reason she was determined to give Laura her treasured Shirley Temple doll for her last birthday. Aren’t we glad she had already made that decision?” He seemed to take a lot of comfort in realizing that my mother had experienced a full, though short, life and that he had done everything he could to add pleasure to it.
Well, I’m sure you’ve realized by now that these devotionals (well the whole blog for that matter) is just a collection of life lessons I’ve learned and have been encouraged to share. I am 65 now. Ten years older than my mother was when she died. Maybe that’s why I feel a new urgency about putting my blessings, blunders, adventures and personal revelations from God on paper. After all, life is too short to keep them locked inside rather than knowing that maybe you might laugh a little, shed a tear or two, raise an eyebrow, learn something the easy way through me rather than the hard way on your own, get a fresh perspective or idea or just sigh and remember a similar time of your own. For Steve, the children and grandchildren, maybe they will get a fresh glimpse into what made me tick, but mostly, I want to praise my Heavenly Father who “knit me together in my mother’s womb” and has bestowed abundant blessings on the person He wove together. Thank you, Father. You made me just as I am for Your honor and glory.
James 4:14 – Whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.”