Monday, April 23, 2018

The Race





Do you remember the movie, The Perfect Storm? It was based on a true story of a fishing boat and its crew who were caught in the midst of several storms. No matter what the captain tried he could find no way out. They were trapped.

The ship went down with all crew members.

I've kind of felt like I've been in the midst of a perfect storm for most of the last year. With the illness and death of my sister-in-law, then my sister's battle with cancer and her death, and my mother's home-going in February, I felt like a hapless captain going down with his ship. 

I've mostly been in a grieving place as well as struggling with my loss of vision and physical challenges. Life has been hard. 

But even when we feel there is no way out of our storm God has not forsaken us. He provides for all our needs. 

I am so thankful for the many friends and loved ones who have held me up in prayer. Thank you. I'm beginning to rally. I still grieve (that process will take time), but I'm beginning to feel more like myself.

I was recently reminded that God has given me gifts and talents and long ago He set me off on a race He wants me to run. And so I put on new running shoes and have set off once more to run my race, the one given to me by the One True God.

I'm working on my health and making changes to help me deal with vision loss. And I will be working with a new publisher, WhiteFire Publishing. I have every reason to believe we will do great things together. 

I've plunged back into my novel and am feeling good. I love to write! 

I will try to do a better job of staying in touch with you here on my blog and will keep you up to date on my new story. I think you're going to like it. 

I pray you are feeling God's presence and that you are enjoying the beautiful world He created for us. And I pray you are running your race. Remember, we don't run alone. 

Grace and peace to you from God,

Bonnie


Friday, January 05, 2018

She Was Special





This is a photo of my sister on her last trip to New Zealand. She loved New Zealand because her daughter and grandchildren live there. This was taken after she had completed a difficult hike. She always loved a challenge.

I wanted to post sooner, but my heart has been hurting too much to do it. My sister Myrn died on December 22nd. She was diagnosed with stage IV renal cell carcinoma in June. We knew the battle would be hard to win, but hoped for more time.

Even now when the truth of my sister's death hits me my heart catches and I lose my breath. It doesn't seem possible. She was the one who was supposed to still be puttering around her garden in her 80's or 90's. Again, I am reminded that God's plans are not necessarily the same as mine.
Myrn was one of a kind, handcrafted by God. She was born in Yakima Washington on March 1, 1954 and was number four out of five children.

She was intelligent, well educated, and a gifted vocalist, musician, and artist. She loved God's Word and was a skilled teacher and mentor. She was a dedicated servant of the Lord.



Myrn's garden revealed how she loved to make things grow. She never tired of fishing and was always up for a new adventure. Her love of family was powerful.

                    
                   

When God called her and her husband, Steve, to Naukati Alaska, where they were to pastor a church she took a huge risk, but bravely trusted God. I've always admired her courage.

She grew to love Southeast Alaska, Naukati and her new church family on Prince of Wales Island. 



Whenever possible she traveled to see family and friends and made many trips across the globe. I always cherished our time together.











Myrn and I were close, but we couldn't have been more different. She was adventurous and always looking for fun. She was the one with the bright smile  on her face who never met a stranger. Mom always told us that if someone knocked at the door Myrn would charge across the house to greet whomever it was and tell them all the latest family drama before they could step inside. 

Even though we were different we were good friends. We spent hours playing ourdoors - red light/green light - Mother May I - Duck Duck Goose - baseball - football. We loved to ride horses, but we didn't have any of our own so we would hang out at our neighbor's place and hope they would take pity on us and let us ride their horses. On summer days we would lay out and tan, but I couldn't take much sun and usually gave up after 30 minutes. Back in those days, Myrn could spend hours tanning.

Indoors, Myrn and I loved playing out dramas with our Barbies and Ken dolls. And we thrived on the competition of board games.

It wasn't always easy to be Myrn's sister. She was So good at everything - an excellent student, musician; she was even a good seamstress and cook. I suppose I should have been jealous, but mostly I was proud of her. I'm still proud of her. 

Myrn was special. She had a way of brightening up any event.
She was creative and helpful, hard working. She was the one we knew could pull off an event. When our mother turned eighty we had a fabulous party. All us kids helped, but Myrn was the one who pulled it together.
 December 22 I lost my best friend. Myrn was the one who knew everything about me. She was the one I could call ... anytime. She'd have a word of encouragement or advice. She'd pray with me. And she prayed for me every day. 

Myrn was a gift, not just to me but to everyone who knew her. It doesn't seem right that a bright light like my sister has been called home so soon, but I know that above all things she loved and trusted God. She loved His Word. In Eccleciastes 3 it says, "There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: A time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance ....

Myrn lived and loved and served. And for reasons I can't understand her time here is finished. Now she is dancing and singing and serving in heaven. I wish there was more time to listen to her sing. More time to admire her newest paintings. More time for morning chats over coffee. And more time to laugh and to be quiet while we rest in the shade on a warm summer day.

Myrn trusted God and I know she understands what it means to grieve. Her daughter Crystal went to heaven eleven years ago. They are together now. Myrn wouldn't expect those who love her to let her go lightly, but she also wants us to get on with life and to fulfill the purpose God has given each of us. To trust Him with our lives. 

My heart is shattered, but how blessed I am to have known her and to know that this farewell is only temporary.

I had a dream a few days ago. I dreamed most of my family, including Myrn, was at a very crowded restaurant. By the time I got to the table there was no place for me. Myrn cleared a spot and pulled a chair up next to her. When I sat down I woke up.

At first I was pierced to the heart, knowing that it wasn't real and that Myrn was gone. But after thinking for a few moments I saw more clearly -  Myrn is saving a place for me at the table, the Lord's table. One day we will be together again.

On her last visit here late this summer she longed for time in the sunshine. She took this photo.




I'll be seeing you, Sis.



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