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Category Archives: Moments

Letting Go of Pretence

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What Our Lord wants us to present to Him is not goodness, nor honesty, nor endeavor, but real solid sin; that is all He can take from us. And what does He give in exchange for our sin? Real solid righteousness. But we must relinquish all pretense of being anything, all claim or being worthy of God’s consideration…Then the Spirit will show us…  (Oswald Chambers in My Utmost for His Highest)

 

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Posted by on January 14, 2019 in Moments

 

The Lord IS My Shepherd #Inspiration

My grandmother’s favorite scripture was the 23rd Psalm, probably the most popular poem in the history of the Bible. I didn’t understand her choice when I was young. I was so wrapped up in my life, I couldn’t see Grandy’s struggles. We lost her when I was in high school, and it’s only now as a parent that I can look back and see beyond the chicken and dumplings, fried pies, the crochet hook as she taught me to weave one thread, to a few of her trials–and her refuges.

Today I plant flag lilies given to me by my aunt who had them from my Granny. I loosen the clay soil, turn in pine shavings, peat moss, and compost, my recipe to help the plants survive and thrive in a land hard packed, weed strewn, inhospitable.

Today I read “The Lord is my shepherd”

Not was, not may be, nor will be. “The Lord is my shepherd,” is on Sunday, is on Monday, and is through every day of the week; is in January, is in December, and every month of the year; is at home, and is in China; is in peace, and, is in war; in abundance, and in penury. –J. Hudson Taylor

Today I feel my grandmother as near as our God who connects us both in faith, in Spirit, in the garden, in eternity.

–Kristin

 

 
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Posted by on July 10, 2018 in Inspiration, Moments

 

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Shocked by Life Insurance Offer

When my husband handed me the mail, he mentioned that he signed up to receive info about life insurance. Since he retired from the Army, his military coverage is going by the wayside. We do have some life insurance for both of us, but considering university costs for four children might be down the road, we were thinking of a term policy to cover that time.

I opened the large envelope and stilled–staring at the information page. “Monthly rates as low as $2.17 per month for Children’s Life Insurance.” Four age brackets were listed; 0-7, 8-15, 16-21, 22-25. Policy amounts listed as $5K, $10K, $15K, $20K, $25.

I couldn’t take it in really. My head was saying $5,000 might not cover a funeral. But a funeral for one of my children. Losing one of them, the thought of preparing for a possible loss is repugnant. Holding the paper in my hands turns my stomach.

Yet, so many people face the loss of a child. My thoughts ran rampant from the St. Jude’s solicitations in the post to the loss of my little cousin back before I had children of my own.Watching The Fault in Our Stars with my eldest son over school break.The 12 year old at our church killed in a car accident before Christmas.

I just cannot imagine.

Should we consider insuring our children? The advice my father, a man who spent his career in the insurance industry, gave when I first chose between full automobile coverage and liability-only was “You only insure what you can’t afford to lose.” What I can’t afford to lose?

Most insurance agents and advisors can agree, though, on one point: Other, more critical financial matters should come first before you even think about buying a life insurance policy on a child. Those include building an adequate emergency savings fund, making sure you and the child’s other parent have enough life insurance and disability insurance, building savings for the child’s college tuition, and getting your own retirement savings on track. (NerdWallet.com)

Gathering the insurance information in two hands to put it in recycling I say a prayer for those who have experienced this loss, at any age, and at the same time thank God we have not joined their ranks.

Heavy hearted-Kristin

 

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Reunion…of sorts #IAmATriangle

Screen Shot 2017-08-19 at 8.02.23 AM“Raised on Sweet Tea & Jesus” says the t shirt of the young woman entering the glass door of the beauty shop. I’m sitting in the corner in the only pedicure chair facing out listening to the mixing of hair color and chat of women being themselves, sharing a little life moment. A regular happening for some, an occasional indulgence for others. I’m not sure which I will be although my last paid-for haircut was over a year ago.

Men frequent this place as well. Third one I’ve seen takes a swivel seat, tucks his sunglasses in the top of a gray baseball shirt tee and doffs hit hat. The drape drops around his shoulders, not the typical black or white plastic that catches clippings. No, this one is printed to like a worn, battered American flag.

I tear up just sitting here. How silly am I?

This time is different. I’m here for good. I cannot tell you how great it is to finally be here, not for a visit, not only for a few years and then on to an unknown. This time is different.

Hello America.

I’m home.

 
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Posted by on August 19, 2017 in Moments

 

Pump Your #Brain

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Photo Credit: Mother Nature Network

Celebrated inventor and physicist Nikola Tesla swore by toe exercises – every night, he’d repeatedly ‘squish’ his toes, 100 times for each foot, according to the author Marc J Seifer.

….According to the latest review of the evidence, around 40% of what distinguishes the brainiacs from the blockheads in adulthood is environmental. Like it or not, our daily habits have a powerful impact on our brains, shaping their structure and changing the way we think.

Einstein’s daily walk was sacred to him….He followed in the footsteps of other diligent walkers, including Darwin who went for three 45 minute walks every day.

….These constitutionals weren’t just for fitness – there’s mountains of evidence that walking can boost memory, creativity and problem-solving. For creativity at least, walking outside is even better.

For more click over to the BBC.

Doing my toe crunches right now. Totally lost count.

–Kristin

 
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Posted by on June 15, 2017 in Moments

 

Smelling Socks #Motherhood

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(Photo Credit to TimelessTreasureTrove.com Where Frugal Got Fabulous)

I sometimes smell boy socks. It’s a dirty job, but someone has to yada yada. You know how it goes. Here’s the deal, though. When you tell kids to clean up their room, and most the mess is a hodgepodge of clothes both clean and dirty, all the clothes end up in your laundry basket.

Maybe that’s no big deal at your house. You’re always trying to make a full load anyway. Not at my house. Four sons, two parents, and a tiny European washer with the shortest clean time for colors at 1 h 20 m. The dryer will take  two times longer, maybe three.

Therefore, I must smell socks. Boys will have a consequence for every clean sock they’ve put in the dirty clothes. I don’t smell underwear. As a woman and a mom, you’ve got to draw the line somewhere.

And don’t get me started on the odors seeping out into the hall. I’m sorry. Once you’ve made the room smell that bad, why would you continue to sit on the toilet for another 45 minutes?

_______________

Kristin King is an author of paranormal fiction. She blogs about travel, food, living in Holland, the occasional current event, and most anything except motherhood.

 
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Posted by on January 7, 2017 in Brings a Smile, Moments

 

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2017 Without You #Loss #Grief #Holidays

His inhaler was empty.

A little American boy woke up a few weeks ago and went to school…just like my four sons did. If he is like them, he was in his favorite class, PE, when the attack came. It had happened before. This time his inhaler was empty. His lungs felt as if they were filling with water. The pressure inside pulled everything into that growing liquid. He was drowning in a room full of dry air. His throat was closing down in the middle of the gym. And his inhaler was empty.

Did you head into the holidays with an empty slot? A vibrant friend who took his own life? A parent you’ve never been without at Hanukkah before? A brother who fought the cancer till he had no fight left?

Is there an empty slot at your center threatening to suck your whole life into pain? Threatening your joy with sorrow? Threatening your blessing with unbearable loss?

When I started writing this blog, Alan Thicke and George Michael were still breathing. Mother and daughter, Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, were still in the world together. Shocking. Taking our wind for a moment. Yet distant. Not like my husband’s father and his aunt. My friend Beth’s brother. My student Sydney’s grandfather. Not like Yuhan, the little boy in my nephew’s class. No article by CNN will review that we lost them this year, or the person you lost who makes your throat ache and close.

Some people will try to comfort us. Try to speak of how great his life was. How my aunt  did everything on her own terms. How filled their lives were with accomplishments, or family, or friends. You know what though? Friends don’t cut it. Honestly, if there’s an empty slot, no lover, no marriage, no success, no child birthed or adopted is ever going to fill that slot. And no words of sympathy, no matter how heart-felt, are going to relieve that grief. Not right now.

My friend wrote me about her loss. “As the year comes to a close here in a few hours for me, I find a strange sense of anxiety welling up inside me. It’s as if by going into 2017 and leaving 2016 I’m stepping through a door and closing off my brother forever. I don’t quite understand that one.” I don’t get it either. But I feel it. Don’t you?

My religious tradition talks about an emptiness inside us that we try to fill with the things of this world, that we think will make us happy. Maybe some of them work for a while. Distract us. Put a lift in our step. A smile for a moment. The hole is God-sized though, and nothing else can take that place. No one else can fill it. And grief is that way too.

An older person dies and somebody somewhere will inevitably talk about how fulfilled their life was. Really? Can’t they feel how wrong that death was? The great-aunt in her 80’s or the little boy in gym class–IT’S WRONG. It was not how this world was created to be. We know that truth inside of us even if we don’t have any way to express it–even if the words won’t come to us or the faith is beyond us. Death is wrong.

Her life was filled. Was it fulfilled? Full-filled life. How do we get that?

“I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full,” Jesus said. Weren’t those people already living? Well, yeah. There’s more though. More for you and for me to reach full-fillment. It’s there for anyone who seeks it. That’s what I’m opening my heart to.

In 2017, that is the air I breathe (song lyrics again) when my chest is too tight to expand. That is the bread I eat when my throat is too constricted to swallow. How do people go on without Jesus? There’s lots I can imagine. Not that. I really can’t imagine that.

2016 was the year that: the colleague lost his dad, the granddaughter lost her grandfather, the wife lost her husband, the sister lost her big sis. The year that you lost…

 

The doctors said my nephew’s best friend would have died even if his inhaler had been full. If the medics had been right there. If he’d been in the hospital at the time of his asthma attack. Sometimes the emptiness is one that nothing on this earth can fill, that nothing in this world can fix. One song lyric says, “And all I see, it could never make me happy.” And if that was the point of the song, it’d be one pretty depressing tune. But the chorus quietly prays:

Let me know that You hear me
Let me know Your touch
Let me know that You love me
And let that be enough (Switchfoot)

Oh God, so many of us are hurting. We need to feel your touch, to know you love us. Some of us know that you hear us, but you seem so far away. We know you are there for us, that you are here with us. Let that be enough. Fill our emptiness with more of you. Full-fill our lives with all you have for us.

“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” (Psalm 34:18)

I had decided not to write this post. Not to transfer the words from my chicken-scratched notebook to this page. Then I opened social media, and two more friends had lost someone so dear to them. I couldn’t not write it. I couldn’t not tell you that there is hope, that there is comfort, that there is a brighter tomorrow. It might get worse before it gets better. And that tomorrow won’t be the same as those yesterdays with your loved one. This is new place, a new way of being in a new year…

2017 Without You

Never without our all-loving God.

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”  (Romans 15:13)

Maybe this will speak to you, the words of Gwen Flowers’ “Grief”

I had my own notion of grief.
I thought it was the sad time
That followed the death of someone you love.
And you had to push through it
To get to the other side.
But I’m learning there is no other side.
There is no pushing through.
But rather,
There is absorption.
Adjustment.
Acceptance.
And grief is not something you complete,
But rather, you endure.
Grief is not a task to finish
And move on,
But an element of yourself-
An alteration of your being.
A new way of seeing.
A new definition of self.

(Some names were changed to protect the privacy of the individuals.)

–Kristin

 
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Posted by on January 3, 2017 in Christmas, Holidays, Moments

 

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