On this chilly, windy day, I felt the need to walk the beach despite the cold. As I began my walk with my head down looking for shells to add to my growing collection, I began to feel very sad. Thinking about all my family and friends who are no longer with us I grieved for them and wished that they were still here. I miss them so much.
As I walked with head down and a few tears trickling down my cheeks I heard a whisper telling me to lift my head, look at the beauty of the waves and the blue sky with white clouds floating overhead and remember the God who made all of this is also my Heavenly Father. He reminded me with the sound of the waves brushing the sands that I am enfolded with His love and that these loved ones are still with me and will always be a part of me.
It was as if I was surrounded by those saints who have gone ahead - mama, daddy, my brother, my husband of 50 years and so many more who are now praising God in His presence. They will always be with me in my memories that are so precious and I am thankful that I have these treasures.
Still walking and listening to my Heavenly Father comfort me I noticed a type of shell on the beach that I have often found broken but never a whole one. There lying in the sand was a small, whole, Angel wing shell. I carefully picked it up for they are fragile and easily broken and then found 3 more. Does God send us signs? Maybe so for these reminded me that there are angels all around and we sometimes feel the brush of angel wings in our life. God is so good.
Feeling at peace and praising the Father for the comfort He brought to me all I could do was sing "Praise God from whom all blessings flow". He has also blessed me with a sweet, strong and fine man, Lindsay, to be my companion, friend and husband in our latter years. Praise Him from whom all blessing flow.
The sun has set, darkness has moved in but my heart is at peace and I know all those wonderful Saints who have gone ahead are praising God perfectly and some day we will praise Him all together. Thank you Father.
We always enjoy coming to St. Augustine and spending as much time as we can on the beach. This is where I can hear God speaking to me through the waves washing on shore, the sound of the wind blowing around me, and the feel of the sand beneath my feet. This week has been an emotional time for me with both ups and downs but walking the beach several times a day has comforted me as I heard His voice speaking through His creation.
Soon after we arrived at my "happy place", I had a message that a dear friend had left this earth and entered his heavenly home. I knew that Ronnie had just this week had been diagnosed with cancer and the prognosis was not good. Having been through this same experience with Roy, I knew that the months ahead for he and his family would be almost unbearable at times. I dreaded the days ahead for Ronnie and his family and friends as we would pray for healing but know that "perfect healing" from the Lord could be the answer.
After we read the message that he had left here and entered Heaven, I again turned to the sea for answers and peace. It was a beautiful day with the sun shining and warm as a late, spring day with the waves gently washing the sands and my feet as I walked.
Memories flooded my mind of the many times that Ronnie and Janet with many of our other friends from our church in Adel, went on mission trips together. They were wonderful days spent doing construction, remodeling, backyard Bible groups, witnessing about our Lord and having lots of laughter. We worked hard but enjoyed the companionship and knowing the satisfaction of helping others.
I wish we had kept a list of all the wheelchair ramps that Ronnie, Tony, Roy, Mr. Henry, Steve and other men in the "Men of Action" group have built in Cook Country GA. Anytime a ramp was needed and the person could not afford to have one built, these men would gather on a Saturday morning and build the ramp for them, at no charge except a "thank you".
These men led our church in numerous mission projects in Adel, Cook county, Atlanta, upper state New York, and many other places. Entire families went and worked on these projects and we always did it freely and praising the Lord. Many people have new roofs, porches, houses painted, yards cleaned, a kitchen remodeled at a children's home, and other repairs that these Men of Action enjoyed doing. They were a joyous and happy group that liked working together and including all who would help but always giving a testimony to their Lord and Savior.
Most of all I will miss the warm smile and hug I received from Ronnie when I would see him at church for he was a faithful member and was a deacon, SS teacher, and anything else he was asked to do. He enjoyed visiting the sick, shut-ins, and visitors with our ministerial staff and always willing to tell anyone about the Lord. We knew that he and Janet would be in their place on Sundays worshiping and praising God.
All of these wonderful memories came flooding back as I walked the beach and grieved for those who have gone to their heavenly home - Mr. Henry Giddens, Roy Robson, and now Ronnie Alligood. I know they are praising the Lord and waiting for those of us left behind to join them when our time comes.
As I listened to the waves this week and heard God speak, it gave me peace to know that we know where Ronnie and our other friends are and that we must continue the ministry they so enjoyed. Thank you Father, for the comfort, peace and joy you give me through your presence and your voice in the wind and the waves.
We say goodbye to Ronnie for a little while, knowing we will see him again some day.
In South Georgia, our Autumn color is quite different than North Georgia or New England. It is still quite warm here and without cold weather, leaves won't turn to those bright reds and yellows you find in other climates. That is is fine with me, for I don't like cold weather at all. If it is too cold for flip flops, it is too cold.
This Sunday afternoon, I was about to go fishing and took some pictures in my yard and the field next door of the colors we have in November. The cotton fields are white with fully opened cotton bolls waiting for the cotton pickers to come and gather them in. Most of the time, the cotton grower does not own a cotton picker but hires someone who has one to harvest the crop. Many of the cotton gins have pickers that farmers hire for this harvest. The cotton fields are beautiful now and waiting to be picked.
|Sunset Over the Cotton Field|
These roses are still blooming in November
Our rose garden is still blooming and we are enjoying fresh bouquets in the house. Beautiful and fragrant.
There is a little fall color around and this is a sample.
I hope you enjoy the beauty as much as I did.
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