Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Happy Passover! and Jesus...

It was quite a day, today. After working from home, two of my realtor friends C & M, picked me up. We took the bridge and went to Mexican Village, in Detroit, Michigan, USA.

Talking about the bridge, I couldn't believe the cost in crossing the bridge; the fee has risen to C$4.75 each way. That's C$9.50 return! I believe I'm in the wrong business! While it feels like highway robbery (lol), it sure was worth it, today.

We dined at M's favourite Mexican restaurant, about a block away from my favourite restaurant. The food was good, but I still like my favourite restaurant better! :-) C's daughter wanted him to bring home some Mexican food that M's restaurant didn't serve, so C and I had to visit my favourite restaurant, anyway. Yeah! I was glad, because this way, I could order some food to take home and share with my neighbour/friend K, since she wasn't able to share in today's outing.

K had told me another friend of hers, R was to be lunching at my favourite restaurant with their mutual friend, S and I hoped to meet with them. While waiting for my take out order, I looked around the seating area and saw the woman I believed was R. Approaching the table, I asked if she was R. With an extremely nervous look of response, she replied she was. I reassured R that it was okay; that my neighbour/friend K had told me she and S would be dining at this restaurant and I was to say, 'hello'.

R asked me if I was the lady who had been supplying K with a daily dinner, while she was recovering from her knee replacement surgery; I replied I was. R jumped up and hugged me, thanking me for my loving gestures towards our friend, K. R, S and I enjoyed a few minutes of conversation, before I returned to C. Our orders arrived and we left to pick up M and return to Windsor.

It was an interesting day, to say the least! :-))

Yesterday, I mentioned that both Jewish people and Christians believe that there is no remission of sin, without the shedding of blood.

In the, 'Old Testament' portion of the Bible, the part that is the same as the Jewish Holy Book, the Hebrew Bible, God's word tells us that there were many laws and rules that God's Chosen People had to follow and obey. Because God's Chosen People are still waiting for their Messiah, not believing that He has already appeared, once, they are still bound by the law.

If you read about how they must live their lives, you'll be surprised how complicated it can be. Personally, I am glad that I live under 'Grace' and not the 'Law', for I am convinced that I could not keep the 'Law' straight in my mind, never mind live it.

God told us that we are all sinners, in Romans 3:23, "For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God;". Both Jew and Christian can agree that God cannot look upon sin. He hates sin. Since we are all sinners, He cannot look upon us. Unless we become cleansed.

The 'Old Testament' believers, God's Chosen People, knew this. Just as we 'New Testament' believers, the Christians, do. While we believe the same about this issue, the difference comes with how we address the cleansing of our sin.

Since 'Old Testament' believers follow the law, they must hold to certain rules of life, like feasts, rituals, prayers, etc., with one being: Passover. What is Passover and how did it come about?

Passover is a celebration of God's Chosen People, being released from bondage in Egypt. You can read (in Exodus) of how God directed Moses to lead His Chosen People out of Egypt, towards the promised land, for it was indeed the Exodus of God's people, from slavery in Egypt.

God directed Moses to request the Pharaoh to let His people go. Because the Egyptian Pharaoh would not agree to this, God brought several plagues to Egypt. No matter how severe the plague, the Pharaoh would not let the people go, even if he agreed to while in the middle of the plague.

Eventually, God told Moses to prepare His Chosen People, telling them to make a blood sacrifice, as was normal for them to do. However, this time, the people were directed to place some of the blood on the doorframes. You see, God planned to kill the firstborns. Pharaoh was told this, but would not let the people go. So, the Israelites did as they were directed to do.

Once the blood from the sacrifice was placed on the doorframes, God's Chosen People were protected from harm. None of their firstborns were killed, for their homes were PASSED OVER. Hence, Passover is the name of the celebration, even still, today.

God spared the firstborns of His people who did as directed with the blood on the doorframes. God did not spare the firstborns elsewhere in Egypt. Even the Pharaoh's firstborn, his son, died. Pharaoh finally let God's people go.

It certainly was a celebration! You can read this for yourself. The good news for the rest of us, who are not Jewish, is that God made a plan of salvation for us, too. God sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to earth, to be the sacrifice to end all sacrifices...to take away our sin and cleanse us with His blood. By doing this, all who believe on Jesus Christ, do not need to rely on living according to God's law, as recorded in the 'Old Testament', although it is a good guideline for living our lives.

However, by believing in Jesus, we have a guarantee of eternal life, in heaven. John 3:16 says, "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life". In Acts 16:11, we are told, "Believe on the Lord, Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house". Nothing could be clearer than this. When we trust/believe in Jesus, His sacrificial blood cleanses us from our sin. It's not just temporarily gone. Jesus' blood covers our sin permanently, so God cannot see it. We are cleansed, so God can look upon us.

Are you one of the 'whosoever's'? Are you believing in Jesus for your Salvation? I am. Hopefully, you are, too. If not, please read your Bible. Begin in the 'New Testament', preferably in John. Hopefully, God will open your eyes to His truth and I will see you in heaven, at the end of our lives.

There is more to be said about Jesus, but I will leave this for tomorrow, for it would make this entry far too long to discuss the details and meaning of Easter, here and now.


Until next time...

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Old Testament & New Testament...

This afternoon, I had a call from Pastor C, my grief counsellor. She wanted to know how I was, because I had not attended the last grief session, last night. I let her know I was fine and reminded her that I had mentioned last week, that I probably would not attend last night's class.

We spoke for a while. I made sure to thank her for all her help. Let's face it, I'm blessed. She had been the person who taught me that I need to make a plan for the special 'firsts' in my life, especially when the 'first' would bring painful or sorrowful feelings back. This was exactly what I had done, regarding my wedding anniversary.

Pastor C made sure to remind me that if I need to talk, all I need to do is call her. Thank you, Pastor C. You have been a true blessing to me. May God bless you, richly.

This evening was a little different than my past Tuesday's, for K, C & family were not able to have me visit early enough for dinner, due to the beginning of N's football season and his first meeting. So, instead, we met a little later. Yes, we enjoyed, 'The Biggest Loser' together. A lot of good it did us, for when K ran an errand, he arrived home with a bag full of Burger King's Chicken Sandwiches, for everyone. Definitely not needed, but yummy! Thank you, K. You certainly spiced up the evening!

Before I left for home, we had a discussion about Easter. The Easter bunny came early for them, to my house, because it turns out they won't be able to share dinner on Sunday after all, with me, daughter P and her family. By now, I'm sure you realize that I don't believe Easter is about the Easter bunny, even if he did leave sweet treats for K, C and family, at my home. :-)

I had commented about it being time for Passover as well as Easter. We had a short discussion about it. Were they shocked when I commented that part of me was glad the Jewish people had generally not recognized the Messiah, when He came to earth? I'm not sure.

We discussed the difference between Passover and Easter. There are also similarities, as well.

For sure, God's word tells both Jew and Christian that without the shedding of blood, there is no remission of sin. Read it for yourself.

The 'Old Testament' represents the covenant that God had with His chosen people, the Jewish people. In fact, the 'Old Testament' of the Christian Bible, is also the 'Hebrew Bible'. So, if you see a Jewish person reading a Christian Bible, don't be shocked, for they read the 'Old Testament'. I know this, because some of my relatives are Jewish people.

The 'New Testament' represents the covenant that God has with the rest of us, as Gentiles. I am very thankful that the Jewish people did not recognize Jesus as their Messiah, as prophesized in Isaiah, for this opened the way for we Gentiles to be 'saved' from an eternity in hell.

Some people might ask what I mean. Well, anyone who reads both the 'Old Testament' and the 'New Testament' portions of the Bible, clearly sees that Jesus is the Messiah, who was prophesized in the 'Old Testament', especially noted in Isaiah 53. The problem arises when people don't read both 'New and Old' Testaments, for the 'New Testament' shows that prophecy was fulfilled, through Jesus Christ.

It may sound like I'm being an oxymoron again (like a jumbo shrimp), but while I'm glad in one sense, that the Jewish people did not recognize Jesus as their Messiah, I am also saddened by this, for they really missed out on God's blessing.

Since it is rather late and this could be discussed further, I'm going to leave this entry, just as it is and continue this discussion, tomorrow. In the meantime, Happy Passover & Happy Easter!

Hit the hay and enjoy your restful sleep. I'll try.


Until next time...

Monday, March 29, 2010

Anniversary... That's All I Ask of You...

I suppose I should wish my Gordon, "Happy Anniversary!", even though he's in heaven. I must admit, it's not a 'happy' occasion for me, today. While it is the anniversary of when Gordon and I married, now that he's gone, is it even our wedding anniversary, any longer? I'll always remember the day, for I'll always remember him, with love.

It's not surprising that I could not sleep last night. In the middle of the night, I decided to watch my DVD, 'The Phantom of the Opera', in honour of Gordon and our anniversary. Finally, close to 6:00 am, I was tired and went to sleep. Believe me, morning came early.

Today, I did no work. A few friends called me and e-mailed me. Even though it was not necessary for them to call/e-mail me, I do thank God for each person, for they are truly a blessing to me.

The only thing I really did was go to Gordon's grave at the cemetary. It was warm enough for me to sit there for a while, so I was glad I had a portable chair in my van. I placed flowers and an anniversary card on his grave and removed the wreath that I placed there, before Christmas. It still had his Valentine's Day card attached.

For a second time today, I watched, 'The Phantom', at suppertime. It did me good to feel close to Gordon.

What a day! Filled with tears and sadness. Joy and appreciation, too. I thought of writing a poem, but my mind was in such a blur that I could not do it. So, I decided to include the lyrics for another song from the 'Phantom of the Opera'. Gordon would appreciate it, for sure.

All I Ask

No more talk of darkness,
forget these wide-eyed fears.
I'm here, nothing can harm you,
my words will warm and calm you.
Let me be your freedom,
let daylight dry your tears.
I'm here with you, beside you,
to guard you and to guide you...

Say you love me every waking moment,
turn my head with talk of summertime...
Say you need me with you now and always...
Promise me that all you say is true.
That's all I ask of you.

Let me be your shelter.
Let me be your light.
You're safe, no one will find you.
Your fears are far behind you.

All I want is freedom;
a world with no more night
and you, always beside me, to hold you and to hide me...

Then say you'll share with me
one love, one lifetime.
Let me lead you from your solitude.
Say you need me with you here, beside you...
Anywhere you go, let me go, too.
Christine, that's all I ask of you.

Say you'll share with me one love, one lifetime...
Say the word and I will follow you...

Share each day with me,
each night, each morning...
Say you love me...

You know I do...

Love me. That's all I ask of you.
Anywhere you go, let me go, too.
Love me. That's all I ask of you...


Until next time...

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Memorable Honeymoon Experience!

Thanks to my friend J, for bringing Swiss Chalet chicken for dinner last evening; it was delicious! I'm blessed!

Had I been able to include a link for music, I would have chosen, 'Point of No Return', from the, 'Phantom of the Opera'.

The movie last night was, 'The Lost and Found Family'. At first, since the main character becomes a widow, I wondered if I should have been there, at all; it was very upsetting. It turned out to be a wonderful movie. Yes, I had to hold back tears throughout most of the movie, but if you get a chance to see it, please do.

Arriving home after worship, I found my neighbour/friend K had dinner waiting for me, today. What have I done to deserve all this wonderful treatment?! Thank you, K. Dinner was delicious! Again, I will say it: I'm blessed!

Today, I plan to write about Gordon and my honeymoon. From my previous entry, you know that I was sick with a respiratory infection, when we got married. It didn't stop me from flying; I was determined to have a honeymoon, for I never had one when I married the first time.

Gordon and I flew to Miami. Upon arriving, Gordon drove our rental car, as I was really feeling awful; I slept as he drove partway to Key West. We stopped along the way for the night. I was sick.

Poor Gordon. He spent most of the next few very expensive days in Key West taking care of me, with my fever. Finally, one afternoon my fever seemed to break and we were able to sit out and look onto the Gulf, then went around the building and looked onto the Atlantic. We enjoyed the hot tub for a short time, before I conked out, again.

We spent a couple of days in Miami, where we bought out so many health products at Walgreen's that I thought we should have bought stock in the company (is it publicly traded?)! It helped though. We did some sightseeing and enjoyed the zoo.

Finally, the day came when we were to embark on our 10-day deep south Caribbean cruise. We checked our luggage and gave the cruise line our passports, as required. You must picture this...I was still sick with fever, off and on. We were really late getting permission to embark. Then, we were notified that the cruise was cancelled. CANCELLED???? I said something like, "He's only kidding, right? This can't be! It's our honeymoon!". Apparently, the government shut down the ship, because over 300 people came off the ship, sick.

Well, instead of embarking, we collected our luggage and were taken by bus to one of two hotels that were expecting passengers. The cruise line expected everyone to change our airline tickets; they claimed they would pay the cost, so we could return home. When the cruise line found out that it would cost over US$900 each, to fly to Detroit last minute, they changed their mind. Good, because we didn't want to leave.

Gordon and I decided we did not want to go home, for this was our honeymoon. Some others felt the same, plus a couple of families joined us in our decision. The cruise line told us all their cruises were sold out. Sure, we thought. Did it matter? They weren't going to help any of us make arrangements through their company.

We insisted they bring in a travel agent; they did. The whole group of us decided to purchase another cruise holiday with another cruise line; since it was only a 1 week cruise, all other travellers were flying home, immediately afterwards, but not us. The cruise line wouldn't pay the US$900 each, so instead, they made arrangements to give us complimentary hotel accommodation for the 2 days we would need it; plus, transportation costs from Fort Lauderdale airport to the hotel in Miami. They gave us written instructions, confirming our agreement.

We were complimentary guests overnight at the hotel we were located at, for that night as well. The next day, we were to fly from Fort Lauderdale to Jamaica to embark the ship, so our cruise line hired a bus to take us.

Gordon and I almost didn't get to go on this 2nd honeymoon cruise, as the cruise line lost our passports. Phew! Thank God, they were found and delivered to us a couple hours before we were due to leave the hotel!

Off we went on a 1 week Panama Canal cruise. We went to Key West, Cayman Islands, San Blas Islands, South America, Central America as well as the Panama Canal, of course. It was a wonderful cruise. Upon embarking, we already had a huge group of friends!

One of the most memorable things on the trip was visiting San Blas Islands. We went by dugout canoe, without life vests, from their main island, going throughout their group of islands to one of their other main islands. On the way there, while Gordon was filming, I prayed we wouldn't sink, because there was a man at the rear of the canoe bailing out water with a bucket!

The tribal Chief took a liking to Gordon and invited him into his private tent; he was the only passenger invited. Too bad I didn't know this, until after losing him and searching for a while! When I found him, the Chief welcomed me also, because I was Gordon's wife. We're not sure why he took a liking to Gordon, but it may have been because they are very short people and Gordon was 6'1'' tall. Later, we sent a postcard to the Chief, for him to add to his collection that he proudly displayed on his 'wall'.

Upon arriving back in Fort Lauderdale, we followed instructions, taking a cab to the pre-arranged hotel in Miami. Unfortunately, the fellow who gave us the instructions must have screwed up, for the hotel had no reservation for us. After refusing to leave, they finally gave us a room for the night.

First thing in the morning, they insisted we leave or they would call the police. We sat in their lobby, me with fever, Gordon upset, for several hours. Since it was the weekend, they couldn't reach the fellow whose card we had. We felt it wasn't our problem, it was theirs.

Several hours later, the hotel threatened to call the police and have us put out of their lobby. Gordon stayed calm; I quietly told them that if they did, I would call every newspaper, radio station, tv station in Miami and surrounding areas, and a lawyer to file a law suit, for the cruise line and hotel were owned by the same company and I felt that they had done just about everything they possibly could to destroy the one and only honeymoon I had ever had, not to mention that I was sick with fever, again, so they would be doing this to a sick woman!

Eventually, they transported us around the corner to one of their sister hotels; the one we stayed at before we left. We stayed there until it was time to fly home, to Detroit.

There is more to this story, but I won't go into it, here. For sure, it was a memorable experience! Seriously, I wouldn't trade this experience for the world.

I loved Gordon then, I love him now and I will love him, forever.


Until next time...

Saturday, March 27, 2010

I Will, Shall, Do...





My friend J will be here soon; she's bringing dinner with her. Later, since it is the last Saturday of the month, we'll go to Calvary Community Church, Tecumseh for their 'movie night'. In light of my plans this evening, I have posted this entry early. May you have a blessed evening.

So, now you know it. Gordon and I loved the story and music of, 'The Phantom of the Opera'.

The photo I've posted is one that I took from one of the balcony boxes in The Paris Opera House - Le Palais Garnier, when Gordon and I took a tour of the opera house; it is the setting of, 'The Phantom of the Opera'. Yes, I managed to fit in the stage, a view of the balcony boxes and even the chandelier. It is an amazing place; if you go to Paris, don't miss it!

We enjoyed, 'The Phantom' so much that when we planned our wedding, we arranged to have the, 'The Phantom' and, 'Christine' sing for us.

Our wedding was a small wedding, but it was amazing. It was a beautiful day. We were blessed to have some family (although not all), along with a few friends in attendance, including both our Moms. My sister was my maid of honour and Gordon's brother was his best man.

The music was wonderful! I could hardly believe I was doing this, though. After so many years of Gordon pursuing me, I had finally given in. I was gloriously happy. Even though I was sick. Yes, I had an upper respiratory infection; no, I wasn't yet taking my wonderful vitamins!

During the ceremony, both Gordon and our Pastor D, almost had heart failure. Well, during our rehearsal, Pastor D had reminded us that if he asks, "Will you...", we were to respond, "I will...". If he asked, "Shall you...", we were to respond, "I shall...". And of course, if he were to ask, "Do you...", we were to respond, "I do...". Trying to stay calm, I had asked Pastor D what he would ask; he responded that he wasn't sure, but whatever he asked, we should respond appropriately.

Sure. Between nervousness and excitement, not to mention this blasted upper respiratory infection, I could hardly think straight, never mind remember anything! Then came time for the question. I paused with my response, for I could not recall what Pastor D had asked. I thought if I looked at Pastor D with a questioning look, he might get the hint that I wasn't sure how to respond, but he didn't clue in.

Then, I looked at Gordon, whose eyes were growing as large as saucers. Pastor D's were, also. Then, I realized that neither one knew that I wasn't sure how to respond, but thought that I was having 'second thoughts', reconsidering and was possibly going to call off the wedding/marriage. Knowing we were being filmed and recorded, I did the only thing I could think of doing. I responded, "I will, shall, do!". I don't think I have ever seen two more relieved men, in all my life! :-))

Hearing the Phantom and Christine serenade us at our intimate reception was such a blessing. One I will never forget. Just as I will never forget you or my love for you, Gordon. You may be gone, but you'll always be in my heart.

Since I have not been able to figure out how to post a link for music/videos, I will just publish the lyrics to one of the Phantom's songs. Enjoy!

Music of the Night

Night time sharpens, heightens each sensation
Darkness stirs and wakes imagination
Silently the senses abandon their defenses

Slowly, gently night unfurls its splendor
Grasp it, sense it tremulous and tender
Turn your face away from the garish light of day
Turn your thoughts away from cold, unfeeling light
And listen to the music of the night

Close your eyes and surrender to your darkest dreams
Purge your thoughts of the life you knew before
Close your eyes, let your spirit start to soar
And you'll live as you've never lived before

Softly, deftly music shall caress you
Hear it, feel it secretly possess you
Open up your mind, let your fantasies unwind
In this darkness that you know you cannot fight
The darkness of the music of the night

Let your mind start a journey through a strange new world
Leave all thoughts of the life you knew before
Let your soul take you where you long to be
Only then can you belong to me

Floating, falling sweet intoxication
Touch me, trust me, savor each sensation
Let the dream begin, let your darker side give in
To the power of the music that I write
The power of the music of the night

You alone can make my song take flight
Help me make the music of the night


Until next time...









Friday, March 26, 2010

Mask & Masquerade...

As I've mentioned previously, as a Realtor, I must attend twenty-four credit hours of education every two years, in order to maintain my real estate licence. Today, I attended an education meeting regarding the pending 13% HST (Harmonized Sales Tax) that is due to begin, July 1, 2010. It will be replacing the 5% GST (Goods and Services Tax) and the 8% PST (Provincial Sales Tax), that we pay currently, here in Ontario.

The difference is, that currently, not all goods and services are currently taxed by both GST & PST. However, after once the HST comes into effect, most goods and services will be subject to HST. While our government justifies the end by the means, we are just supposed to smile and accept it (like wearing a mask), whether we want this or not. Prepare yourself! We are in the process of being taxed...to death.

Talking about accepting life... as per usual, I thought of Gordon and my upcoming wedding anniversary, this coming Monday. I thought about, 'The Phantom of the Opera'. It was musical that we both loved. In fact, we saw 'The Phantom' both in Toronto, Ontario and London, England.

In the summer of 2000, on July 15th, we first attended a play at St. Martin's Theatre: Mousetrap by Agatha Christie. We enjoyed this immensely.

Afterwards, we took a ride in a London cab (taxi) and headed for Her Majesty's Theatre, where we thoroughly enjoyed: The Phantom of the Opera by Andrew Lloyd Webber.






What a wonderful day we had! It's not just seeing about seeing plays/musicals, together in London, England; although that was wonderful! But, you see, we loved, 'The Phantom of the Opera'.
One of Gordon's favourite songs from 'The Phantom' is, 'Masquerade'. Why? I don't really know. I just know Gordon enjoyed that music.
This reminded me of how we all wear masks, to some extent.
Every day, I seem to write about my heartbreak over Gordon's death, my grief, etc. I do so, for I believe it helps me to have a voice, to say/write my feelings, somehow justifying my brokenheartedness. Yet, during everyday life, I do not focus on my pain or loss.
As other people do, I go about my business doing what I need to do. I focus on what I need to focus on. Even if there are times that tears run down my cheeks, for the most part, I don't let on about any pain I am feeling. Some people don't even know my husband died.
Others, like some of my church family, think and tell me that I am a rock; for I smile, continue contributing where I can for God's work, and generally just don't look like I'm grieving. Even though I am.
Gordon is never far from my thoughts.
Until next time...




















Thursday, March 25, 2010

A Prune???

This afternoon, I had a call from my friend A, who was once again inviting me for supper this coming Monday. The day of Gordon's and my wedding anniversary.

As I mentioned in a previous entry, I don't believe I will be attending the last meeting of the grief counselling support meeting for widows, on Monday. The reason is the same one I told my friend A, today. In fact, it is the same reason I gave my friend J, who wanted to take me out for lunch, on Monday. It's also the same reason I told my realtor/friend C that I wouldn't go to dinner with him and other friends, on Monday.

I just cannot see myself being in control enough of my emotions to spend time with anyone, on Monday.

To say I am blessed, is beyond the truth. I know that I could not ask for better friends and/or support at this time. The truth is that God has provided more wonderful, loving support than I ever dreamed or imagined I could ever have. Praise God! Thank You, Jesus!

Truly, I felt badly for A, today. She admitted to me that there was supposed to be six of us meeting at her home, on Monday; she was feeling badly having to call each person to cancel, for each woman was hoping to support me. While I feel so very badly for her, I still feel blessed.

May God bless each and every person who has been praying for me and supporting me through this heartbreaking grief and time of loss. I know that God provided each and every one of you, to show me that I am loved.

I don't deserve this. I know that as a sinner, I deserve the wrath of God. I know that it is only by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, that I have been saved and have found favour with God. I know that my salvation truly is a gift from God, not of works, provided to me so that I cannot boast about having done anything to deserve it or earn it.

The same goes for the loving support I have been blessed with. I know I don't deserve the love I am receiving. This in no way diminishes the value of the love I am being given, but rather enhances it. Puffs it up. Makes the love received, even greater in value, to me.

I have found it amazing that some of the people I thought would be a support to me, haven't been. But, I have been blessed beyond belief by people who I never dreamed would support me, showing me love and support that I have so badly needed.

Does everyone need this love and support when they lose a loved one? I suppose I truly cannot answer that question. However, I can say that I have lost grandparents, parents, other relatives and even been previously divorced (yes, people feel grief through divorce) and never did I need the support and love that I feel I need, now. Of course, never before have I felt like part of me has been ripped out, torn away from my body and soul.

Tonight, while at prayer and Bible study, someone prayed for me, that God would help me to grieve Gordon in a way that would help me to feel less pain, knowing I would be seeing Gordon again, in heaven. Thanks be to that person. I truly want to be able to be happy that Gordon is in heaven, with Jesus. Especially since I know I will see him again, when I go to heaven. For whatever reason that only seems to be known to God, I just truly haven't been able to feel happy about this.

I just know that I miss him, every minute of every day. When I think about living like this, with the pain I feel, I wonder how I can cope for the rest of my life. No matter how many times I have prayed and asked God to take me home with Him, so I can be with Jesus and Gordon, He has chosen to allow me to awake every morning.

This shows me that God has a plan for my life. His plan obviously includes a purpose for my life, that I am not yet aware of. I just cannot focus on long-term life, for it becomes overwhelming. So, to date, I have been just trying to live one day at a time, relying on my Lord to help me, every second of every minute, of every hour of every day.

I'm hoping to feel better after Easter, for between now and Easter, I can only see times of pain, filled with firsts without Gordon: first wedding anniversary, first Good Friday, Easter Saturday (the day we were married was on the Saturday of Easter weekend) and of course Easter.

Believe me, if I thought Calgon could take away all this upcoming pain, I'd look like a prune!


Until next time...

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

2 Vacant Home Incidents & Prayer...

This morning came early. All day, I've been exhausted, again. How can this be helped, when I sit up at night crying half the night long? Sleep finally arrived about 3:30 am.

Even so, I did what I had to do, today. In addition, I managed to find time to rest and ice my poor, painful, blackened foot and toe. At least I've been able to keep the swelling down to a minimum.

In yesterday's entry, I promised to relate my two past experiences that were dangerous, involving vacant homes. Here goes:

Incident #1:

In the spring of 1983, I was working for the post office. I had purchased a power of sale property; a townhome in Roseville Gardens area. Wanting to check window sizes from the exterior and just basically wanting to check on the property, I went through the courtyard to the livingroom window to peer inside.

To my shock and dismay, there was a man asleep on a couch in the livingroom. This was a total surprise, for at the time I had my offer accepted, there had been no couch in the vacant home. And, who was this stranger who had thrown cigarette butts all over the livingroom carpeting?

I called my realtor and told him to get this fellow out of my property. After all, when a person purchases a power of sale property, it is purchased 'as is', so if this fellow burnt the unit down, this is the condition I would be buying it in!

My realtor (who shall remain nameless) kind of brushed me off, suggesting this may just be a 'condo' worker slacking off. I told my realtor that I didn't care who he was, I wanted him out. My realtor agreed to deal with this.

A few days later, wanting to make sure my wishes had been done, I went once again to the property to make sure the man and his couch was gone. However, instead of finding the unit empty, the man was once again there, on the couch. Awake. There I was, standing there looking at him. He looked back at me; if looks could have killed, I would have been dead. Then, he got up and ran towards the door next to the window I was peering in.

This totally shocked me, for I was still dressed in my postal uniform: navy pants, light blue shirt. What did I look like? Many people had mistaken me for a police officer, while dressed in my uniform. Did this matter to this fellow? No.

I ran across the courtyard, screaming at the top of my lungs for help. One neighbour was exiting his home and came to my assistance. When the man chasing me saw that I had help from a neighbourhood man, he stopped chasing me and took off in another direction. The neighbour escorted me to my vehicle and I left.

Again, I called my realtor. This time, I insisted that he call the police and make a report and get that fellow out of my pending property. I made it clear, that if he did not do this, then I would myself call the police and I would also call a lawyer and sue him.

The situation was dealt with. Within a couple of days, my realtor called me and apologized to me. He explained that the man had been picked up by the police. Apparently, there was a warrant out for this man's arrest, as he was a dangerous criminal on the run.

No one had to tell me the man was dangerous! Of course he was! After all, if he wasn't, he wouldn't have been chasing someone that looked like a police officer! What kind of person would do that, other than a dangerous person?

Incident #2:

It was approximately 1991, when I was working as a realtor, showing homes to prospective buyers from Toronto; the family was looking for investment property to rent out.

One of the properties I showed these people was a power of sale property, that was vacant. As per my usual habit, I was last to climb the staircase to the second floor. The wife peeked into the masterbedroom and commented that someone was sleeping there. I responded that she might be mistaken, wondering if it could be litter resembling someone lying there. The woman was a nurse; she replied that he was either asleep or dead. After peeking in once again, she reported that he was alive, for he was breathing.

All I could say was, "Out!...out!...out!", as I guided each person in our group back down the staircase and out of the home. Once outside and in my vehicle leaving the property, I explained my concern and told them of my experience in incident #1, explained above.

I called the listing realtor and notified her of the situation. She called the police and the problem was rectified. I don't have details. And, I truly don't care. I was just happy to have all of us safe!

I am just thankful that no one was killed or injured during either of these incidents. The outcome could have been very different, if not for the grace of God.

To this day, I hate doing open houses, alone (although I do have to do this). If possible, I try to not enter vacant property alone or with a potential buyer that I have not met with previously.

Think I'm strange? Not really. Realtor's get mugged, raped and murdered. It is not always something people remember, but it happens. Ask the family of Lindsay Buziak, who was a member of the Greater Victoria Real Estate Board, before she was brutally murdered, Feb. 2, 2008. Her murder has not yet been solved. I was reading about it today, in my REM (a real estate magazine printed for realtors). If you have information that can help lead to an arrest, you may be eligible for a $100,000 reward. Call Greater Victoria Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

I must comment that in my opinion, the only property worse and more dangerous than a vacant property, is one that is vacant and boarded up. Dangerous and unscrupulous persons have a greater chance of hiding out without being noticed, for no one can easily see light from candles, portable stoves, flashlights and what have you. Intruders can move about easily, without being easily noticed. This poses a much greater risk to those living nearby. In this case, my family.

May God keep a hedge of protection around all who have been affected by this horrible situation on Windsor's west side, near the bridge, protecting each person and keeping them from harm. In Jesus' precious name I pray. Amen.


Until next time...

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

OMB Meeting at City Hall

Today was what I would call a non-productive work day, but a good day nevertheless.

First thing this morning, after doing what I needed to do, I picked up my daughter P. We had a great time of fellowship while we ate breakfast, together. We never seem to run out of things to talk about!

Since we both needed to be at City Hall, we made a stop along the way, so I could pay my property taxes on the home I own, as well as the land I've owned for years. Phew! Glad it's done! At least until later this year, when the final billing is sent out.

We made it to the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) meeting on time. You see, both P and I are members of BUHDAG, a group of people who are fighting against the situation that residents are facing, who are being hurt due to the ongoing problem between the CTC, the bridge company and the City of Windsor.

For anyone who isn't aware, the bridge company owner wishes to build a second span for the Ambassador Bridge that leads traffic to Detroit, Michigan, USA, from Windsor. Mr. Maroon, who currently holds the rights to the bridge bought up many properties on Windsor's west side, in the area he hopes to build the second bridge span.

The City of Windsor has taken a different viewpoint. C of W is not convinced a second span should be built, especially when the DRIC is planning to build a new bridge closeby in an area slightly further west of the current bridge.

So, while the dispute drags on, residents are being hurt by the dilemma. The bridge company wishes to demolish the homes that were previously purchased, leaving the land vacant, until such time as a decision can be obtained by the governments in question. However, the City of Windsor will not grant demolition.

The properties in question have been vacant a long time. All vacant homes in the bridge company's possession are boarded up. On the surface, this sounds good. The trouble is, it's not.

In addition to surrounding properties of these homes, being devalued even more drastically than our current real estate market has experienced, these vacant properties pose risks to residents, as they offer opportunites for vagrants and unscrupulous people to use these properties as drug houses, places of refuge for other illegal activities and more.

One lawyer present today, claimed that since I don't live in the affected area, I shouldn't be allowed to be a participant. I opposed the lawyer, stating clearly that if any of my grandchildren or other family members were to be murdered, raped, mugged or otherwise hurt due to the availability of crimes being committed in/around these vacant homes, I would definitely be affected. I was added as a participant. Praise God! Thank You, Jesus!

As a member of BUHDAG, I don't believe that the residents of the area affected by the dispute should be suffering or have their lives placed in any danger. Further, I am glad that BUHDAG has filed suit against the City of Windsor, because I believe the City of Windsor has been negligent in their duties to protect the residents.

Let's face it, if there were a vacant home, boarded up because it is in run-down condition (many of these homes have been stripped by vandals) next door to your home, you could call your municipal government and complain. The process would be that a property inspector would investigate and if warranted, have the municipality issue a workorder on the property. An owner would then have to repair the property or demolish it.

However, in this situation, the City of Windsor has NOT issued any workorders, so no repairs have been made on any of these properties. They become more and more of a risk the longer they remain vacant, boarded up and in poor condition.

As a person of interest, I believe that the City of Windsor has an obligation to uphold the law and protect it's residents. If the bridge company and the C of W have a dispute, they can take it to court or do whatever they have to do to resolve their dispute, but it should not be left in limbo, hurting those who live nearby these properties.

Just to get the picture, in order to walk to school, my grandchildren must walk by six (6) (in a row) of these derelict homes, before they reach an area that is once again inhabited. And, this is just on one street. It's like this on MANY streets in the area. Wouldn't you be concerned?

Since this entry is long enough, I will tell you tomorrow about my personal experience being chased by an unscrupulous vagrant, who occupied a vacant property, as well as second incident involving a vacant home, that happened on a later occasion. You'll be absolutely shocked, I'm sure.

Before I say, 'goodnight', I would like to thank son K & C and family, for having me once again as a guest, this evening. Even though I brought the main portion of dinner with me for us to share, I thank you for supplying the rest. I truly enjoy my fellowship time with you, all. Not to mention, being able to watch, 'The Biggest Loser' together! Thank you, so very much. I'm blessed!


Until next time...

Monday, March 22, 2010

Anger, Injustice and the Cross...

It seems I'm always a day behind, lately. lol Oh well, better late than never!

Last evening, I watched one of my favourite programmes, 'The Amazing Race'. While the participants were travelling, doing challenges and detours, I was icing my foot and baby toe on my right foot. How could I have done it, again? A couple of months ago, I banged my left foot and broke my toe, where it joins my foot; now, I've done it again, except on my other foot, my right foot! Oh, Lord! You do have a sense of humour, don't you! At least it wasn't quite as black today, as it had been last evening and the swelling seems to be at a minimum. It's probably because I iced it and rested today, working only at home.

K, my friend/neighbour and I enjoyed some great Christian conversation, today. Her poor boyfriend had to sit and hear about how we need to be born again (read the book of John in the New Testament). Hopefully, those seeds planted, God will water! We had an inspiring conversation and delved into her Bible, during our time together. Awesome! We find we have so many things in common.

Her knee is healing well; she is able to get about better, now. Late this afternoon, K called and asked if I had made supper, yet; I replied that I hadn't, because I had eaten a late lunch. So, she sent some over for me, to heat up at a later time. What a blessing she is to me, too! Along with the meal, she sent a lovely card, thanking God that we had become such good and sincere friends. May God bless her, richly. She's a blessing to me! Thank you for your generosity; I'm sure I'll enjoy every morsel, when I eat your gift, for you are a great cook!

This evening, being Monday, was my night for grief counselling with my widows group. It was an interesting evening. We all seem to relate well with each other. I'm sure the other widows feel as blessed as I do, having participated with Pastor C, who is the facilitator of our group. Even so, I let them know that I may not attend our final group meeting, next Monday. It is my wedding anniversary. Since I'm feeling sick in my heart again today, I cannot imagine that I will feel like participating with the group, on that day.

All my cronies and Pastor C encouraged me to come out, even trying to get me to commit to going for a time of coffee and fellowship afterwards, at the nearby Timmie's. All I would commit to was praying about it. Part of me feels I should go; part of me feels horrible, wanting to stay home and cry, rather than cry there, with them. Lord, I truly need your wisdom and guidance with this matter. It may seem trivial to some, but to me, it's big.

Even though God helped me this weekend, by giving me peace regarding my loss of future expectancy, with Gordon and doing missions-type work together, today I just felt so lonely. I know, I know. I'm supposed to keep busy and I do. If I could just stop my brain from thinking, I'm sure I'd be improved.

One thing I did today, was during my business calls I called a young woman I had spoken with last autumn, regarding the sale of her home. At the time, I didn't realize it, but now I know that I know her Mom. L's Mom had been such a blessing to me, when Gordon was first diagnosed. L's Mom had a brain tumour removed and I believe has another one that grew in it's place. We've never met, but have a mutual friend, my friend J. I was blessed with many telephone conversations and prayer times with L's Mom. Now that I have more time on my hands, with a slower than normal real estate spring market and now that I feel that I could cope better, discussing the whole situation, I have resolved to meet with L's Mom, M.

Tonight, during our group meeting, Pastor C discussed with us, 'Anger' and 'Injustice'. After reading to us about this, she looked directly at me. I laughed, for I knew what she was referring to. The Glass Wall. I've spoken about it and written about it, often. How our healthcare system is a good one, but it is broken and needs repair. I believe it is truly broken, when our system does not provide the medical treatment and attention to all who require it, especially when such treatment is/may be available, but just not to everyone, like in Gordon's case. We could see the treatment, but could not access it.

Pastor C feels that I should do something about this, by approaching government officials, creating a stir in the population about this injustice. Part of me agrees with her, but part of me is plainly just too tired, for I know how much energy it takes to 'fight' the government or other entities. I've been there, previously.

I let her know that as a member of MADD, I was a speaker for groups, including the court-ordered programme that convicted people must attend. I sat on the Drug Awareness Week Committee for a time, here in Windsor, plus the Committee to End Abuse of Substances in Essex County. I am a member of Injured Worker's Coalition; I'm there if they need me, but rarely attend meetings, for it stirs up pain for me, again. As I said to her and the group tonight, I just cannot bring myself to do anything at this time about the problem of the Glass Wall. I truly do not have the strength.

In the past, I've seen and experienced what it is like to be an advocate, fighting for the rights of others as well as myself. It takes a lot of energy and anger, to make it effective; much frustration must be endured. I truly just don't feel I have it in me, now.

Besides, I've accepted the fact that God's will is always done. I've forgiven those who hurt Gordon and I. All that's left in my heart is pain and sorrow, that I am trusting God to heal. I cannot bring myself to reflect daily on everything I've been through, for it would be overwhelming. I've taken it to Jesus at the cross and left it with Him. What better place is there to be?


Until next time...

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Guidance & Peace...

If I did not tell you that last evening I attended Bible study with my friends, J & J, J & W and P, I would be remiss; A & K, we missed you. Friends, I enjoyed every minute. Thank you for including me. Please know that I look forward to my time with you, studying God's word.

Today, was Sonday. As per usual, I went to worship God with my church family. Afterwards, we had a missions fund-raiser meal, we call, 'switch-chalet'. :-)) In addition to supporting missionaries, we also support young people and adults who wish to participate in short-term missions trips. Funds raised today, are being used for young people going on a missions trip, this summer.

My friend B asked me to take her shopping, so we did this. After dropping her off at home, I did an errand and visited Gordon's grave. As per normal, I found this very upsetting in one way, but heartwarming in another.

You see, last night I dreamt of Gordon, again. This time, it wasn't a nightmare, but it was a rather terrifying dream, where Gordon was protecting me and taking care of me. When I awoke, I felt sadness and peace all at the same time. It felt good to have him close to me, even if it was only in a dream, yet I could not help but wonder why it was a terrifying dream.

At Gordon's grave, I thought about my dream and wondered if God was telling me that Gordon is watching over me, just as He, Himself is. Crazy, eh?! Although I do wonder, even if the Bible doesn't tell me so, because I had a measure of peace.

God spoke to me, yesterday. As I wrote in yesterday's entry, I attended a memorial service for a fellow realtor/broker-owner of a local brokerage firm, who died. It was heartbreaking for me to sit there, watching people drinking and scurrying around, especially to buy more beer, etc. at the bar.

You need to know that I am not a prude. I rarely drink alcohol. It's not because I worship at a Baptist church, for I've been like this most of my life. I just don't really like the taste of most liquor and what I do enjoy drinking, I worry that it could easily become a bad habit, so I just avoid it, by my own choice. If others chose to drink, that's fine with me, as long as they don't choose to get into their vehicles and drive away. That's one thing that's important to me (in addition to their need for salvation).

Anyway, it wasn't just the drinking that bothered me. The realtor's ex-wife and his children spoke of their love, relationships with him and of course, of their feelings of loss. Understandable.

What wasn't understandable to me, was that many people spoke of him, telling stories of how they enjoyed doing things together, that I felt was sinful. It was hurtful to me, to listen to people talking about how they mocked God, together with him. Seriously, at one point, I thought I might begin to cry.

Suddenly, the memorial part was over. The children asked everyone to remain, as a meal was to be served. I kept looking around at all the people laughing and carrying on. Then, I turned my chair, to face the others at my table. The man next to me was laughing, telling everyone who could hear, how his dead realtor-friend had related to him on one occasion, that a Christian had approached him at his office, telling him of his need for salvation and talked to him about Jesus. He did not do this in an honouring way, but in a mocking way; the listeners all began to laugh, heartily.

God brought to my mind a Bible verse that really relates to fellow believers and not the unsaved, but I thought about not eating, nor drinking with such people as I was surrounded by, put on my coat and found the deceased's daughter. After giving my condolences once again, I left. Heartbroken and bewildered.

All the way home, I reflected, cried and asked God why He had put it on my heart to attend such a memorial service. Especially since every time I thought about attending, I had decided that I didn't want to do this; yet, when I decided not to attend, then I felt God leading me to go.

Maybe He led me there so I could give the realtor's children the sympathy card I had written to them, speaking of God's love and their need to look to Jesus. But there's another thing that occurred to me.

Last weekend had been my church's mission conference. As I had written, it reminded me of some of the heartbreaking loss I was experiencing with Gordon's death, for we had hoped to travel, spreading God's gospel message of salvation, doing missions work, if possible.

Something I had not written about, was that I had seen an opportunity to do missions work in Kazakhstan, that I was considering. During the week, I had contacted Feb International, now called The Fellowship International Ministries, spoken with the contact person regarding the missions opportunity in Kazakhstan and received an application.

All week, I had been praying about Kazakhstan, looking for wisdom and guidance concerning making a decision on going or not. I don't believe in coincidence. I do believe that God works in mysterious ways.

On my way home from the memorial service, I realized that God had led me there, so I could see that I didn't need to go half way around the world to do missions work, for He had shown me that there was a missions field right here, at home.

Since I spend a lot of my time with saved friends and church family, I had been blinded as to the extent of the need, right here in Canada. Oh my goodness, how could I have been so blind?

All of a sudden, I had peace within me. Since then, I haven't mourned the loss of not doing missions work somewhere in the world, with Gordon. Praise God! Thank You, Jesus!

Tonight, for the first time, I actually feel hope that I might survive through this grief. So far, it has been such a heartbreaking trial, that I cannot even explain to anyone the depth of pain and sorrow I have felt.

One thing I know for sure now, is that what I am experiencing is another instance of God's refining fire.


Until next time...

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Dream?!

Another first happened to me last night. As you know, I only began dreaming again, a few weeks ago. I have hardly been sleeping, never mind dreaming, since Gordon died. Well, last night I actually dreamt of him. Sort of. It wasn't a good dream, but rather, I dreamt of Gordon in a nightmare. Don't ask me the details of the nightmare, because I cannot recall, tonight.

My grief counsellor, Pastor C, will probably tell me that I am progressing through my grief, again. I was the only person in either of the two groups (Thursdays & Mondays) that had not dreamt about a lost loved one. So, I suppose I should be thankful for this 'first'. Hopefully, any subsequent dreams will be happier ones.

This morning, I awoke with the realization that I needed to make up my mind if I was going to attend a memorial service for a fellow realtor/broker-owner of a local real estate company. My co-worker/friend C, had asked me to call and we'd make a decision, together, so I did. C wasn't feeling well, so decided to not attend. This left me in a dilemma. You see, this wasn't a memorial service like I had ever attended before, so I wasn't comfortable attending, especially alone.

Yes, no; yes, no. My mind kept bouncing like a ball. Should I; shouldn't I? Why the dilemma? The realtor in question had been already cremated. There was no funeral service or visitation at a funeral home. Instead, there was to be a memorial wake held at one of the Royal Canadian Legions, here in Windsor.

Whenever I thought of attending, I felt very uncomfortable, knowing that people would be drinking alcohol, etc. during the memorial service. But, whenever I thought about not attending, I felt like God was leading me to go. So, I went.

Unfortunately, I won't be able to tell you in this entry how the memorial service was, because I have other things to say, tonight. So, 'tune in' tomorrow, for the full scoop!

I will tell you that all day, I thought about God using this trial of Gordon's death to bring me closer to Him. Every time I think of why God would take Gordon home, removing him from my life, I know in my heart it is because He wants me to rely on Him and not Gordon. I thought of how our Refiner's fire works, cleansing us from our impurities, bringing us closer to Him.

In addition, I know that long ago, I made a commitment to God, to live for Him and Him, alone. Jesus is my Saviour. I've said it before and I'll say it again: I cannot even take my next breath, unless God ordains it. Gordon's life was no different.

I suppose when I finally get to heaven (which I hope is soon!), I'll find out the total/complete reason for this heartbreaking trial in my life. Until then, does this mean that because I am trusting in Jesus for everything in my life, that I won't grieve the loss of my husband?

Does this mean that I won't miss his tender touch, his hugs, kisses, unending love for me? Does this mean that I am above the hurt and anguish of losing the love of my life? No. I'm only human. I will grieve. I will cry. I will hurt. And, I will heal. In God's time, with His help and love.

As I said previously, when I awoke today, I thought about how God wants me to rely on Him and Him, alone. Not Gordon, not anyone; just Him. And, was reminded of a song with beautiful Christian lyrics that friends had posted on facebook:

The Deer's Cry

I arise today
Through the strength of heaven:
Light of sun,
Radiance of moon,
Splendor of fire,
Speed of lightning.
Swiftness of wind,
Depth of sea,
Stability of earth,
Firmness of rock.

I arise today
Through God's strength to pilot me:
God's eyes to look before me,
God's wisdom to guide me,
God's way to lie before me,
God's shield to protect me,
From all who shall wish me ill,
Afar and anear,
Alone and in a multitude.

Against every cruel merciless power that may oppose my
body and soul,
Christ with me, Christ before me, Christ behind me,
Christ in me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ on my right, Christ on my left,
Christ when I lie down,
Christ when I sit down,
Christ when I arise,
Christ to shield me,
Christ in the heart of everyone who thinks of me,
Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me.

I will arise, today.


Isn't this beautiful?! I had never heard it, before; you can find it on youtube, I'm sure. When I heard the song and read the lyrics, I knew it described my relationship with God/Jesus, before Gordon died.

Since Gordon's death, I have to admit that I haven't always felt that confident in God's love for me, for I have felt so very let down that He chose to not heal Gordon, but take him home, to heaven. Of course, this was my will, for Gordon to be healed; it wasn't God's will. I always prayed that God's will be done, but with the hope that it was God's will to heal him. Alas, it wasn't God's will.

Friends, thank you for posting the song on facebook. I needed it. God knew I did, so He had you post it, just for me; even if no one else appreciated it, I did. May God bless you, richly.


Until next time...

Friday, March 19, 2010

Weak? Strong?

Sleep wasn't a problem last night. However, I had a very upset stomach, today; hopefully, I'm not coming down with whatever son K experienced, this past Tuesday!

Due to not feeling well, I never went out of my home, today. Even though I wasn't really feeling very well, I managed to get a lot accomplished.

In addition to what I usually do, I spent some time on the phone, speaking with my brother G. As you know, he recently began blogging; G's blog: Disabled vs Government is on my blog list. He needed some help in getting his blog site organized somewhat. It may not look different, yet. But, eventually you will be able to notice differences. When I am able to go and visit him, I'll be able to set up his site for him, even better.

Since I wasn't going to go out feeling the way I was, I also found time to update the labels on my blog entries. This was something I've been meaning to do for quite a while, but knowing it would be very time-consuming, I kept putting it off. Today was the perfect day. Yes, I completed the task!

My friend J, recently loaned me a book to read: No Longer Alone, by Joan Winmill Brown. Over the past few days, I've been reading it. If I wasn't grieving, I would say that I thought this book was really good reading, especially for someone who is not yet a believer in Jesus Christ. Actually, it is a rather inspiring story of her life and how she came to Christ. I'm grateful to have read it; today, I finished it.

While I enjoyed the book, I found it also broke my heart. If you've read her story or will read it, you will/have notice(d) that her husband becomes ill. Joan prays for her husband. God answers her prayer in a positive way; he is healed. Praise God! Thank You, Jesus! I'm happy for them.

What broke my heart, is exactly what I mentioned in yesterday's blog entry. Why didn't God heal my Gordon? He could have, for nothing is impossible for Him. He choose not to. This breaks my heart, every time I think of it. Lord, help me, please.

I know His will is always done. I know there is a time to be born and a time to die. It was Gordon's time to die. I know this. But, why? God could have healed Gordon and allowed us to grow old together. To worship Him together, in spirit and truth. To be obedient to His word, travel and spread the gospel message, as we're commanded to do and had done in the past. What happened?

Many times, I've heard from people that God tests us. I know this; the Bible tells me so. I know God loves me; that He wouldn't hurt me for the world, because I am one of His children. I'm supposed to be a great testimony for Christ. I thought I was. Until this happened.

Of course, being Christian doesn't mean that I'm perfect. It does mean that I'm forgiven, for past, present and future sin. It means that I will be able to stand before God and He will be able to look upon me, for I will be a clean vessel, with no sin. God cannot look upon sin. This is why we must all come to Christ and be saved. Saved from an eternity in hell. Saved to be able to spend eternity in Heaven with God.

The only thing I can think of, is that since God told us that we must comfort others, we will have to suffer ourselves, in order to be comforted. I will suffer; I know this. After all, He did tell us that the rain will fall on the just and the unjust; in otherwords, everyone will have problems in life. In 2 Corinthians 3-4, God tells us, "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God."

I also know that I will never understand God's plan, until I go to heaven. His ways are not our ways. I know this, for if they were, Gordon would have been healed. Forgive me, Father. It sounds like I'm not trusting in You. I am, though. You know this. It's just so heartbreaking to experience such loss.

God has already had me helping others, in my life. Comforting those who I could help comfort. I truly believe that this has to be one of the reasons that Gordon was taken from me. Now, all I need to do is hang on, until God heals my brokenness. Please make it soon, Father!

In the book, Joan remarked something similar to what I've said about myself, previously. She said, "I am a weak woman, but I have a strong God." Amen to that, sister!


Until next time...

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Just a Whisper...

It would have been nice to have gotten a good sleep last night. No, it wasn't that I was upset or grieving, but rather, I was too excited to relax. My baby brother G, was going to be interviewed early this morning by CBC Radio, in Kitchener/Waterloo Region, because of what the region's housing commission is in the process of doing. They are beginning to ban people smoking in their own homes; albeit, their rented homes, but the point is, their homes.

My brother sits on a committee that has begun this process. While he does not necessarily agree with it, there is also nothing much he can do about it. Personally, if it was me, I'd be screaming! Don't misunderstand me, I am not a smoker. Okay. I did smoke, until Sept. 7/1986. Surprised I can remember the date? :-)

Actually, it is not the issue of smoking that concerns me, it's the issue of the rights of privacy in a person's home that concerns me. First smoking, then what?? No cooking certain foods? No sexual activity? What next?? All I can say is that if the government is allowed to do this to people, without a fight, then those affected deserve what they get! I learned a long time ago that BIG BROTHER is watching; always has been and always will be. People need to protect their rights.

That's all I am going to say on the matter, except to say that after waking what seemed like a hundred times during the night, in fear of missing the radio interview, I never got to hear it, for our CBC Windsor station did not carry the interview and I could not access it through internet. Hmmm...a sleepless night, for nothing!

The truth is, God is in control. He said the rain will fall on the just and on the unjust. He never promised us a rose garden, but promised to be there for us. In fact, He said in Isaiah 43:2, "When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned. Nor shall the flame scorch you."

I cling to God's word; to verses that show God's promises to us, for I know that God is truly the only person who loves me.

Yes, Gordon loved me. While some family loves me, I have battled a lifetime of lack of love from those who should have loved me. I'm not angry. I've forgiven. But, I'm realistic. I know that human love is finite. Limited. Only God can truly love me. Love you.

We spoke of this tonight, at a 'reunion' grief support meeting for those who completed the Thursday evening programme. Yes, it surprised me that after Gordon died, there were folks that I thought would love and support me, that didn't. I was also surprised by those who I didn't think would love and support me, but did.

Still, I know that I cannot count on any person on this earth; only God. I love God. I love Jesus. He's my best friend, my Saviour, my Lord.

While I am not angry with God, I feel very, very let down. I know that there is a time to be born and a time to die. Gordon died; God took him home. Yes, if he had to die, I am glad he's with God.

However, I feel so very let down, because I know that no one could have had greater faith in God, to heal Gordon. While family can let us down, God doesn't. I know it wasn't God's will to heal him. Why not?! No one could have been more faithful than I; no one could have prayed more fervently than I. Wasn't I a good and faithful servant, praying for and forgiving those who hurt me and Gordon, doing good to others, especially those who dispitefully used us? Plain and simple, I just feel so very let down; heartbroken.

And, I miss my husband. I miss my Gordon. I'm lonely for him and him, alone. No one else will do.

I've taken advice and used it, from grief counselling and friends, to keep myself busy; I did this until I thought I'd collapse. Did it make a difference? No. I've prayed, helped and done good to others. Did it make me feel better? While I'm happy to be an obedient servant, the truth is, it didn't help me, one iota. For, as soon as I walk through the door of my home, I'm lonely.

Lonliness. Not for other people. No, God has provided me with plenty of people to help fill my time, people to help and those who help me. No, it's not people I need. It's my other half, my Gordon. I can't help how much I miss him. He's part of me, that's been ripped out of my life.

As I said previously, I cling to God's word. What else can anyone do. I'm sure that in His time, He will heal me, fully. In the meantime, I am thankful for every good thing in my life. Including a friend who sent me this by e-mail; a thought that was used for their daily devotion:

At any time of the day or night, we can call on Jesus.
He is always waiting, listening for our call.
What a wonderful blessing.
No phone needed, no email, just a whisper.


Until next time...

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

St. Patrick's Day?!

Considering I went to bed late last night, I think it's safe to say I slept fairly well. Hopefully, one day, I'll feel back to 'normal'; whatever that is! ;-)

I suppose I should say, "Happy St. Patrick's Day!". Although, I'm not all that sure about this. lol Okay, okay. I must admit, I did wear green today, as well as a Tara Brooch clutch pin. Hopefully, my Irish grandmother won't turn over in her grave, for she was not Catholic, lived in Northern Ireland (not the Republic) and did not celebrate the Catholic St. Patrick's Day, but rather celebrated the Protestant Orangemen's Day, July 12th.

All I can say is that I'm glad the 'troubles' are over; even my Irish family is wearing green, once again! The 'troubles' had been going on for centuries. If you recall British history, you'll know that the Kings/Queens usually dictated what religion you had to be. Well, Ireland was ruled by Britain; most people were Catholic. However, several centuries ago, many English and Scottish immigrated to Ireland, bringing with them their Protestant religions.

Eventually, the Catholic Irish wanted independence from Britain. However, not all Irish people agreed, especially the Protestants, who had mostly settled in the north of Ireland. Why did they settle mainly in the north? Who knows? Not me! However, after visiting N. Ireland several times, I would hazard a guess that it may have been due to the fact that on a clear day, if you're up along the coast road, you can see Scotland. So, it may have been heartwarming for those immigrants to still 'see' home in the distance.

Not quite a hundred years ago, Britain agreed to give independence to Ireland. The majority Catholic population was very happy; however, the Protestant majority in the North, was not. They wanted to remain part of Britain, so Ireland was divided into two countries: The Republic (some people call the South) and Northern Ireland (still part of UK).

You need to know that religious lines are not that clear, for in reality there are Protestants in the Republic and Catholics in N. Ireland. In fact, in N. Ireland, even today, there are villages and small towns that are considered Catholic, where people fly the Irish flag: Green, White and Orange, with the Green representing the Republic and the Orange representing Northern Ireland. There are also villages and small towns where the Union Jack is flown, declaring alliegance to Britain; their curbs are usually painted red, white and blue, also.

My Grandmother's parents were Irish; her Mom (my Great-Grandmother) was a cousin of J. Paul Getty, but her Dad (my Great-Grandfather) had immigrated to N. Ireland from Glasgow, Scotland and became Irish. Gordon and I were blessed to see the Scots-Irish celebrations; we had a wonderful time celebrating my family's heritage as well as the heritage of many N. Ireland residents.

Anyway, I had been asked to sing two songs at church today, for the 50+ group that meets monthly, with the request that one of the songs be, 'O Danny Boy'. I agreed to do it, but was very shocked, for 'O Danny Boy' is a very Catholic song and we worship at a Baptist church! Many of you might say, 'who cares!'. Well, to be honest, it doesn't matter to me, but when Gordon and I married at that same church, Gordon had request the pianist to play, 'Ave Maria', but the pianist refused due to the song being Catholic. Wow! Can you see why I was shocked! What a change of thinking!

To show you how things have changed in Ireland, a couple of years ago, one of my very musical cousins sent me a postcard with the music/lyrics of, 'O Danny Boy' on it, so I didn't even have to check it out on internet; I was all set. But, I sang this last. The first song I sang was an Irish Hymn from the 8th century called, 'Be Thou My Vision'. Then, in between the two main songs, I sang a short chorus of a song I knew from playing records (the old 78's) at my Granny's. The melody is known as, 'The Irish Washerwoman', but truly has no lyrics that accompanies the music. Since I could only recall one verse, I thought I'd check it out on internet and found that there were many versions of lyrics written to that melody. So, I stuck with the lyrics I knew:

Did...you...ever go into an Irishman's shanty
Where whiskey was plenty and money was scarce
A three-legged table they used for a match
And a hole in the floor, for the baby to scratch

Da da da da-da-da
Da da da da-da-da
Da da da da...
And a hole in the floor, for the baby to scratch

Shocked? lol It was short, cute and totally out of character for me to sing at church, even if we were in the 'fellowship' room! lol lol

Still, I believe that together, we all had a good time of fun, food and fellowship, today. Hopefully, you had a great St. Patrick's Day, wore green and celebrated, even if you weren't Irish. After all, it's only once a year when you get to become Irish! Then again, I'm thinking I might have to wear something orange on Orangemen's Day, July 12th! Want to celebrate with me?!


Until next time...

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

That's the Question!

Asprin...or not asprin? That is the question! Seriously, I had a great sleep last night. Before I went to bed, I took an asprin. So, the question is, did the asprin help to relax me so I could sleep, or did I sleep due to answered prayer, or did I sleep because I was still exhausted? Hmmm...it's hard to say. I'm just glad that I slept. Praise God! Thank You, Jesus!

Aside from my usual work-at-home routine, I managed to bake cupcakes to take to church tomorrow, for the 50+ group luncheon. After struggling to get the lid off my food colour paste for close to a half hour, I was finally able to make the normally white cake mix green, for St. Patrick's Day! Once cooled sufficiently, I packaged some up for tomorrow and iced some to take with me later, to K & C's for tonight's dessert.

In addition, I planned to bake a couple loaves of green bread. The bread machine I have currently, is my second one, because my first one burned out; literally, smelled like it was on fire, when it died! This is the first time I've used this machine since Gordon died. Another first.

After placing all the ingredients, including my green food colour paste, into the loaf pan, I turned the machine on. It clunked and clunked. It obviously wasn't working, so I removed the loaf pan, examined the situation and made an adjustment to the flywheel on the underside of the pan, that appeared to be sticking. Well, the clunking sound stopped; the machine sounded normal, but the mixing paddle was not moving. Great!!

If you haven't ever used food paste, you might not understand the situation, so I'll try to explain it to you. Food colouring paste is MUCH more concentrated, thicker and deeper in colour than regular watery food colouring. In fact, in order to colour the whole 1lb. loaf of bread, I only needed to add a dab on the end of a toothpick. Yes, you read correctly. So, knowing the bread machine wasn't working, what was I to do?

I did what any other good baker would do. I began to mix the ingredients with my hands; yes, they turned GREEN! :-))

Then, I thought that possibly the machine will continue through it's cycle, so I tried again. Nope. It didn't work. So, I continued on. Like any good baker would, I began to knead the dough. Let it rest, knead, let it rest, knead, etc., until it was ready to be baked.

Another dilemma. Should I try the breadmaker to see if the cooking cycle would work? Since my oven was already on from making the cupcakes, I decided to prepare a regular oven loaf pan and baked the dough in the oven. Voila! A green loaf of bread!

The only problem was, upon cutting the loaf, I found the bread was like a brick. Obviously, you cannot use breadmaker yeast in a loaf of bread to be baked somewhere other than in a breadmaker machine. That's the only thing I can think of, for I've never had bread before that didn't turn out well. So, even though it looked beautiful, in the garbage it went. The worst part for me, was that my neck and shoulders have hurt all day, from all the kneading. And for what? No reward! Oh well, if that's the worst that ever happens to me again, I'll be happy.

As per my as-0f-lately-routine, I went to son K & C's for dinner, since it is Tuesday. It was nice to see K this time, for it had been a couple of weeks since I had seen him, as he was working afternoon shift. Now, he's gotten a new position, so he'll be on steady day shift. Thank You, Lord! Grandsons S & N were home; it was nice to spend time with everyone. I'm blessed!

After feasting on a BBQ meal that K made, we relaxed and watched, 'The Biggest Loser'. Oh yes, how could I forget! The green cupcakes were a hit!


Until next time...

Monday, March 15, 2010

Quite a Day!

Today was quite a day! As per my usual, I worked at home in the morning. Although I got quite a late start. It's not hard to do that when you don't get to sleep til at least 7:15 am! I was up by 9:30 am, so it was a rather short night, once more.

I lost a client today, because their plans changed and in addition, an appointment cancelled, so I ended up doing more work at home and making both work and personal calls.

One of my personal calls was to my younger brother, G. G became a double amputee last summer, is single and lives in Kitchener. Recently, he began a home-based business and has been working hard at it. In addition, he has read my blog entries and decided he would like to do the same. So, a few weeks ago, G created his blog, 'Disabled vs Government'; you'll find it listed on my blog list on the right side of this page.

Don't be shocked when you read what G wrote, if you decide to check it out. It may be rather shocking information, but true. When I read G's first and only entry to date, I was reminded of how grateful I am that God saved me. Praise God! Thank You, Jesus! Just remember, you can choose your friends, but you can't choose your family, even though you sometimes would like to do so! Hopefully, you won't judge me by my family, for I am not them and they are not me. :(

Another new blog listed on my blog list is, 'Lovely Lupie'. No, this was NOT written by my youngest daughter P, but rather by a young woman who, like my daughter, has Lupus. If you read her February entry, you will read a fairly good description of what my daughter lives with, for it describes her fairly well. Although, P has a few more problems.

Since today was Monday, it was grief-counselling night. It seems that every time I start feeling like I am doing better with my grief, something seems to happen to make me see that I am still a wreck. Yes, it happened again, tonight.

Listening to the other five women in the group, I felt badly, for with the exception of me and one other widow, they all seemed to be able to enjoy and laugh at fond memories about their dead loved one. I cannot always do this. Sometimes, when I think of Gordon and fond memories, I burst into tears. So, you can imagine what I was like, tonight. You got it! One huge tearful basketcase.

The woman seated next to me didn't help. She kept telling me in various ways that I needed to trust in God, more. After a short discussion, I gave up. Let her think what she wants. So be it. From her perspective, I should be happy Gordon is dead, in heaven with Jesus, is not suffering any longer and is waiting for me. Yes, I'm happy that since it was God's will to not heal Gordon, he is in heaven with Jesus, not suffering any longer and is waiting for me, but I'm not happy he's dead. I would have been much happier if God's will had been to heal my husband and not take him home! Her husband was in a nursing home for about six years, with Alzheimer's. She admittedly had several years of suffering and sorrow, but used that time to grieve his loss. Whereas, this past summer, Gordon's Neurologist/surgeon gave us hope, because his inoperable tumour/growth had not grown (I believe due to prayer), so he didn't feel Gordon needed to be monitored any longer, with the proviso that if he had any change in health/symptoms, he should have another MRI done, immediately. So, this lead me to believe there was hope. Now, his depression and resulting problems that developed from this, was a different story. I know I haven't dealt with all of that garbage, yet.

Pastor C, commented that she believes that all the sorrows I've experienced have just come forward and are complicating my grief. She suggested that I might want to ask a physician for antidepressants. NOT! NO WAY am I doing that. God's grace is sufficient for me. I believe that He will never give me more than I can handle; after all, He promised me this. So, I know that while I don't feel well at this time, I know He is with me, always.

Are you hearing me, Father??!! I already feel like my cup is full and is overflowing with stress and grief. Yet, recently, He has chosen to add two more trials in my life, that I would prefer to not discuss here, now. Yes, sometimes I feel like I have too much in my cup, but I am confident that my precious Saviour, Jesus will help me through it all. I am trusting in Him...and ONLY Him.

Although I do know for sure, that if I could just sleep regularly, I would feel so much better. Even a healthy person would have trouble existing (yes, I didn't say living) with such lack of sleep, but with me having physical limitations, I know it is vital that I get rest. And, that hasn't been happening.

Father, I pray it is Your will to help me sleep and move forward through my grief-depression to where I can totally accept the sorrow, loss and heartbreak I feel resulting from Gordon's health problems and death. I ask this in Jesus' name and thank You in advance. Amen.

Sleep well. I'm counting on God to help me.


Until next time...

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Prayer and Song...

Today was our final day for the missions conference weekend and it was great! I am so grateful God saved me. I love worshipping Him. Of course, it's always nicer worshipping after having a good night's sleep, like I had last night. Praise God! Thank You, Jesus!

Usually, I don't request prayer for others, unless it is close family/friends and extremely important issues. Believe me, it would be simple to have a running list of people needing prayer and it would probably be as long as my arm, but I won't do that to you.

However, I will ask for prayer for two people. The first person is a young man D, who is about twenty-one years old; he was hit by a car and then run over by the same vehicle after that and is currently in critical condition. The second person is my friend J's Father, who was taken to hospital, today; normally, he only has partial breathing ability and he has developed pneumonia. Both are in the same hospital Gordon was, when he died. Both have very serious conditions, under the circumstances. This is why I believe I need to ask you to pray for them. Thank you. May God bless you, richly.

After church, I went to the cemetary, like I usually do, on Sunday. Today, I sang to Gordon, for I know that Gordon loved the song I sang. It made him cry whenever my Mom would sing, 'Danny Boy'. You should know that my Mom loved to sing and she was not Irish; her parents were from London, England area. So, singing, 'Danny Boy' had no special meaning to her, other than she enjoyed singing the song.

The reason this song is on my mind, is because I've been asked to sing it on Wednesday for our, 'Over 50's' group at church. To be honest, I've been trying to learn it fully, because I have never sang it before and only know part of the lyrics.

A couple of years ago, one of my Irish cousins (my Dad's Mother was from N. Ireland) thought it was strange that I didn't know the song by heart and sent me a postcard with the words and music. I found this to be quite funny, really. You see, 'Danny Boy' is a Catholic song. Some of my Protestant Irish family wouldn't even hear it being played, never mind encourage me to learn it! :-)) It's obvious to me that my music loving cousin R, is an open-minded up-to-date Irish woman who puts her love for Ireland ahead of anything else! I'm thankful the 'troubles' in Ireland are now over!!

Really, I mean that. On Gordon's and my first visit to Ireland (I've been there about a half dozen times or so), one relative asked us if we were afraid to be there. In pure innocence, we said we weren't, especially since we trust in Jesus for our salvation. To live is Christ and to die is gain! They seemed quite pleased at our response and showed us some places that had been bombed by the Irish Republican Army (IRA) within the previous decade!

Another reason Ireland is on my mind, is because today, I had a phone call from one relative, R. R doesn't write often, but prefers to phone. He had received my card, so called to thank me and see how I am doing.

Gordon loved my Irish family. My Irish family loved Gordon, too. On our last visit, they threw a surprise 60th birthday party for Gordon. It was truly a surprise, for they never even told me about it!

It's always nice hearing from family I didn't know I had there, until my first visit. On that initial visit, I found that instead of only seeing headstones, I actually had family there, still. Apparently, some knew there was family in Canada and had lost track of us, while others didn't realize we existed, at all!

Yes, I must admit, visiting Ireland was a true blessing to me. One day, I'll have to write about it, but not tonight. It's enough to say that I am blessed to have family there, and am grateful to know and love them and have them know and love, me.


Until next time...

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Missions Breakfast, DST & More!

Last evening, I was utterly exhausted. Even still, I got into bed and could not sleep. This is getting rediculous! I tried reading my Bible. No sleep. Prayed. No sleep. Eventually, I got up and watched my DVD: Though None Go With Me. I've mentioned it, before; hopefully, you've watched it, or will. One day, I'll talk about some of the reasons I enjoy this movie, but for now, it's enough to say that I finished watching it about 5:00 am. Sleep still did not come, immediately; but, I did finally drift off. The alarm went off early, for me, at least!

Not only had I agreed to pick up my friend B, who was going with me to the missions breakfast meeting, but I had also agreed to work a table on behalf of someone who couldn't be there, to do fund-raising for a young man who will return again this year, to Tanzania.

We made it on time! It goes without saying that our breakfast was delicious, but even better was what we heard from the two missionary couples from Spain and Zambia. While it was encouraging to hear how Christianity is spreading in Zambia, it was disheartening to hear how in Spain, and in Europe generally, Christianity is being limited, now.

A few years ago, Gordon and I were travelling in Europe for several weeks. We were so excited and happy to see that people seemed to have so much freedom and were celebrating Christmas in ways that we, in Canada, can no longer do. For example, in Munich Marienplatz (near City Hall), there was an open-air market, where market vendors as well as stores were selling a variety of Christmas items and displaying Nativity Scenes. Christmas Carols were being broadcast for all to hear. People were wishing others Merry Christmas. Unlike what we are allowed to do anymore, here in Canada.

Now, from what I heard, all this is changing. Just as here, people are being limited, now. Sad. It's sad. Even so, Lord Jesus, come.

On my way home, I had to make a couple stops for work and upon arriving home, I sent a fax. Then, I chilled out, for a while. After having only a couple hours sleep, again last night, I was so tired that I found myself nodding off, while I relaxed in my recliner chair. You know I must be tired when not even travel shows about Ireland can keep me awake!

My neighbour/friend K called and brought me a lovely plate of dinner. She said it was, 'her turn'. Well, I must say, it was delicious! Thank you, K. I appreciate that even though you are just beginning to be able to do things after your surgery, you thought of me.

This evening, I decided to watch both short DVDs my friend J had given me; they came from her brother J, who wants me to keep them and lend them out to people I know, or pass them on. J and I had previously tried to watch one, but it was a defective DVD, so these are 'fresh' ones. Both are distributed by Voice of the Martyrs, about Christians being persecuted in other areas of the world, like India and Asia. I believe I mentioned previously about them, but in case you didn't read about it, they are called: Enemies of the State? and Indian Voices, Testimonies of the Persecuted.

If you're not aware of how Christians are being persecuted for their faith, in other parts of the world, you need to get a copy of these DVDs, or find other sources to watch, read or listen to. While we suffer persecution in some ways, here in North America, it's nothing like what our brothers and sisters in the Lord suffer, in some places. Please, pray for them; they need to be lifted up in prayer. Just as I pray for you.

As I mentioned earlier, I am utterly exhausted. Hopefully, I will be able to have a decent night's sleep, tonight. Morning will come early though, for we need to move our clocks ahead, for Daylight Savings Time (DST)! Enjoy your rest; I'll try to do the same.


Until next time...

Friday, March 12, 2010

Missions Dinner!

What a day! I don't think I stopped, at all!

As you know, I usually work at home, at least in the mornings. Today, I had to go to my office to pick up some paperwork that needed to be copied on legal-size paper. Great... Our office didn't have any, nor did I at home, because our usual real estate documents are now printed on letter-size paper now, instead of legal-size. So, I thought I would go to a Shopper's Drug Mart, where I know they have some. Murphy's law was written for me! The machine was being serviced, so I could not make any copies.

By this time, I had less than a half hour before I had to be at a very important meeting. So, I had a brainwave! A friend of mine S, who is a broker-owner of his office, was only a block or so away from where I was, so I dropped in at his office. Praise God! Thank You, Jesus! S had some legal paper and was gracious enough to copy all seventeen pages for me! Thank you, S. You were a life saver! :-)) For sure, you were a true blessing to me.

Later, I had to meet someone, but when I went to where she was supposed to be, she wasn't there. Rush, rush, rush. And, for no reason. Oh well, God has a purpose in everything.

My friend J, who came for lunch yesterday about 1:45 pm, met me for dinner, tonight at my church; she picked up our friend B, who joined us. On my way, I picked up 'newer' friend J, so the four of us enjoyed our time of food and fellowship, together.

You see, this weekend is 'Missions Conference Weekend' at my church. This evening, as I mentioned, we enjoyed a delicious meal and then listened to a missionary speak and preach.

Missions is important to me, not just because God commanded us, as Christians, to preach the Gospel to all the creatures of the earth, but because I believe God would have me involved as a missionary. Go ahead. Laugh. Me...a missionary! lol It's true. Missions is close to my heart.

In fact, this is why Gordon and I both became certified to teach English as a Second Language (ESL). We both felt drawn to being missionaries, to going somewhere in the world where God could use us, once Gordon retired from working at GM. Of course, no one can really go to some countries as missionaries, but must go in some other capacity, with the idea of doing God's work as we can, like China and other countries.

Gordon had other skills, for he was wonderful with plumbing and electricity; in fact, he worked at GM in London, Ontario for a time as an electrician, wiring train diesel locomotive engines, when he was laid off of work, here in Windsor. Me? Well, with my limitations, I'm not good for much, but I can teach English and have some office, accounting and computer skills.

But, as Gordon became more ill with his inoperable brain tumour/growth, he became more and more depressed. Not only was he in pain and suffered greatly, but he became less and less his old self and became more and more like someone else. I won't go into details, but there was no way we could even consider following our dream.

Losing Gordon may have been a shocking surprise to me, but God knew. In retrospect, I can see that God prepared a way, for ever since we had been teaching ESL, we had never been without a student, until this last September, when Gordon got really sick. So, I know that God was preparing for Gordon's death, so I wouldn't be burdened with extra work at a time when I wouldn't be able to handle much, but I didn't realize it until later, after Gordon's death.

No matter how you cut it, it's just another way that I have been disappointed, for it's just one of many broken dreams, never to be fulfilled. Oh well, I suppose you could say it just wasn't God's will for my life. I wonder what His will IS for my life? I suppose time will tell.


Until next time...