Friday, June 4, 2010

Ode to a Place

Yesterday my mom moved into a gorgeous new home.  It is located in a community on the lake with tall trees, quiet boulevards and welcoming neighbors. It is God's provision, brought about by the most carefully orchestrated circumstances.  She feels at home there; she and my dad had played cards in this home several times.  Even though he won't live in this house with her, she has memories of him there.

New beginnings also mean tearful good-byes.  The home she is leaving has touches of my dad's loving care everywhere.  There's the corner in the kitchen where he poured the coffee hundreds of times to serve it to guests.  There are the walls he painted according to mom's instructions.  There are dozens of small repairs he made to keep it perfect that no one else even knew about. 

Strolling through the lawn, the memories of Dad flood to me.  He loved working outside in the hot Texas sun.  I see the pool, waiting for the new owners to open it, and I recall him bouncing his baby granddaughter in the sun-warmed water.  I marvel at the thousands of pieces of native stone he moved to just the right spot to perfect his landscaping.  I sigh at the artistry of his impressive cactus garden, many plants having originated in the fields around the house.   His touch outside is everywhere, his handiwork alongside the Creator's.

The breezy barn was his respite where he could enjoy the company of his animal friends, pray, think, and occasionally escape to his hammock.  Many pieces were skillfully crafted there with just a few tools.  I saw the hundreds of feet of metal trim and stall walls that he repainted just a few years after painting it for the first time just like he did the garage walls and floors.  He had asked Ryan and me to help him and was so appreciative after we helped for an hour or so.  The portion we painted was such a small part of the entire job.

I'll miss the walk from the barn to the house that he made several times daily.  I love to try to imitate his peaceful gait.  I imagine him enjoying the breeze, chirping birds, and smell of mesquite.

Thank you, God, for the taste of home you give us here on Earth. 

In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you.  John 14:2

...He blesses the home of the righteous. Proverbs 3:33

We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord.9 So we make it our goal to please him, whether we are at home in the body or away from it.  2 Corinthians 5:8,9

Mom's new house is already a home of love.  Numerous friends and family members have toured the home with her as she contemplated a purchase.  The previous owners, friends of hers, tried to prepare it well for her arrival, patching holes on the walls and leaving behind beautiful furnishings and fixtures.  Good friends from church carried in some possessions.  Neighbors have brought food.  She snuggled in bed and read a story to Molly.  I believe Mom will love and serve and encourage and support hundreds in this home in future years.

Dear Lord, fill Mom's home with your Spirit.  May it be a place of peace and hope and love.  Bring people through the doors that give life and healing to Mom's soul as well as those who need Mom to share God's love with them.  May her years here be rich and filled with wonderful memories.  Be her Protector.  Amen.

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