Through Thorny Ways

MasonJarRosesHymn{Gracia Rose turned two this week. I plan to post photos from this year’s party soon, but for now, here is a little background about her name and some recent reflections along with some pictures from the Rose Garden Party we hosted to celebrate her first birthday last year.}

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My thin sweater did nothing to ward away the chill in the air. The smell of wet earth hung on the wind. I slopped my high heels through grass and mud on the way to the stadium where my littlest brother would be sliding the tassel from one side of his cap to the other, crowded in by hundreds of other robed students doing the same.

Murky water seeped into my shoes on my walk to the concrete. I wanted to grumble, but all I could think about were the waterlogged feet of a woman on the other side of the world, a woman wandering with holes in her boots and a gun to her head. She had walked that way for days, then weeks, then months. By now it had been almost a year since she and her husband were forced from a bungalow on their second honeymoon by a gang of rebels.

The woman’s name was Gracia. And I prayed for her. Continue reading

The Sacred Side of Sickness

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Three weeks ago, I felt a pack of vermin parachute into my sinuses and start a street fight. I knew the icy/hot running through my veins the first week of September had shot down my immune system and left me there for the taking. I walked around in a cloud for a few days, put the hot pack on my cheek, stumbled through the early school mornings and gave, gave, gave…nursing, playing, teaching. Some days I’d teeter while reading a picture book and fall asleep sitting up.

By the end of week one, I felt an upward swing, but it was only a lull before the real takeover began. Continue reading