Tuesday, April 29, 2014

To Everything There Is A Season

My world had been rocked.  I have put off blogging for as long as I can because I know this is something I have to do.   I have learned so much about myself, my God, and my perspective on life in just one week's time.  I temporarily said goodbye to one of the dearest, sweetest, most precious women in my life last Tuesday night.  My life as I know it, along with the rest of my family, will never be the same.  I still don't feel like this is real.  She was in my life for 26 years and 1 month, and a piece of my heart went with her.  I can't go on blogging here without this special tribute, as she was a reader.  I remember her telling me how she loved to keep up by checking this blog...  Needless to say, she left behind a world of influence in my life. I wanted to share a few things with you in her honor...

A few things I learned from my Aunt Karen: 

1.  Keep a journal: Karen was an avid journalist   She had several journals that she left behind.  My Uncle has found such comfort in having these journals and all that she included in them.  Earlier this week, she inspired me to begin journaling again.  I can remember her telling me she loved that I kept journals (when I sporadically did) and there is just something timeless and romantic about journaling with paper and pen.
2.  Be fearless and fight: Since the day she was diagnosed with cancer, she has been a fighter.  She fought with all she had to hang on to every minute of life.  My Aunt was a true warrior and not only that, she was thankful for what she did have and cherished every moment of her life though it was often a struggle.  In fact, one of the songs she chose to be sang at her funeral stated, "When the sun comes up tomorrow, Lord I'll be praising you..."
3.  Love my husband:  I like to think my Aunt and Uncle had the best love story of all time.  I witnessed it for 26 years and can't wait tip they meet again in heaven...I can't wait to witness that reunion.  They loved each other unconditionally all while keeping God as the center of their marriage.  I will strive for their kind of love with my Mr. for the rest of our lives.
4.  Love & Serve my God: Up until Karen couldn't come to church at all, she always participated in every church activity and served others in one way or another.  She taught, she organized and planned, she cooked and baked, she drew, she wrote, she sent name it.  She did it.  She served the Lord with all that she had up until her body could go no more...enough said.  We have no excuse to not serve him...
5.  Trust in God's Word: Karen included so many of her favorite bible verses in her journal.  You could tell she drew strength from the scriptures she chose.  God's word is not just a story to read.  It is the living word of God and as the Bible said "sharper than a two edged sword."  Indefinitely, we should treat it as more than a book.  I am guilty of that.  God help me to do better and follow in her example to cling to your word!
6.  Plan: My Aunt Karen was the BEST planner.  She planned our wedding, our showers, our family dinners, our church activities (you name it).  She even had planned her funeral and all the things she wanted to leave behind for her family.  I think I am a planner by nature, as it has always been my instinct to plan everything as well.  I'm thinking I may have had a little influence here though...;) 
7.  Learn from the Past:  I really don't know how to word this, but one thing that always stood out about Karen to me was how she loved older things.  She loved Andy Griffith   The Waltons.  It's A Wonderful Life.  Vintage lunch boxes.  Older names.  Older people (lol).  She learned from the people and the times she admired.  The Kardashians did NOT impress her...LOL!  In a world that often shuns the older ways...she understood their value and significance.  Love that about her...
8.  Cherish: Karen cherished the important sentimental things.  As I was at her and Uncle Todd's home this past week, I went through several of their photo albums.  If you ever had given her a card, picture, etc. you better believe she saved it.  Every. single. card.  I had ever given her was there.  She kept it.  Anything that belonged to a loved one that she possessed, you couldn't pay her a million dollars to let go of it.  She cherished the things that matter. 
9. Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers-Eph 4:29.  I often remember her encouraging or complimenting someone.  I don't think we can do this enough for one another and I am often so caught up in myself or what I need to be doing, I fail to take the time to encourage others.  
10.  Send Cards: She and my Nana both have always sent cards.  I used to follow in their footsteps, but in the past couple of years...I have been lax.  It is my intention, to pick up where I left off and make sure I continually send cards, real, handwritten cards, to encourage, to thank, or just to say reach out to those who need that little reminder that someone is thinking of them.  The world needs so much more of this!

There are so many things to write here, so many pictures and memories I could share that I know I have left many out.  It's really hard to put everything into a post at a time like this.  But I did my best with a week to reflect (when I wasn't at work!)

I'll end by saying, Aunt Karen is not gone.  In fact, she is more alive then she has ever been.  She is with Jesus, with a new and perfect body, thanks to her faith in Jesus Christ.  I feel her sweet spirit with me daily since she passed.  Her life will forever influence the woman I am, and will become, as life ticks along.  Her example has shaped my life more than she will ever know.  Thank you for all you stood for Aunt Karen...I will NEVER forget it.

I would appreciate all of your prayers for My Uncle as she is his world, and also her family.  
God bless:)

Ecclesiastes 3

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.
What profit hath he that worketh in that wherein he laboureth?
10 I have seen the travail, which God hath given to the sons of men to be exercised in it.
11 He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.
12 I know that there is no good in them, but for a man to rejoice, and to do good in his life.
13 And also that every man should eat and drink, and enjoy the good of all his labour, it is the gift of God.
14 I know that, whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever: nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it: and God doeth it, that men should fear before him.
15 That which hath been is now; and that which is to be hath already been; and God requireth that which is past.
16 And moreover I saw under the sun the place of judgment, that wickedness was there; and the place of righteousness, that iniquity was there.
17 I said in mine heart, God shall judge the righteous and the wicked: for there is a time there for every purpose and for every work.
18 I said in mine heart concerning the estate of the sons of men, that God might manifest them, and that they might see that they themselves are beasts.
19 For that which befalleth the sons of men befalleth beasts; even one thing befalleth them: as the one dieth, so dieth the other; yea, they have all one breath; so that a man hath no preeminence above a beast: for all is vanity.
20 All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again.
21 Who knoweth the spirit of man that goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast that goeth downward to the earth?
22 Wherefore I perceive that there is nothing better, than that a man should rejoice in his own works; for that is his portion: for who shall bring him to see what shall be after him?
Nellie's Cozy place said...

Hi Cassidy,
So very sorry to hear about your aunt hon, know she is hap hap happy where she is, but know how hard it must be for all of you, as she sounds like such a lovely lady.
What a wonderful tribute this was to her hon.....and I am sure she must have loved you very much too.
It is a precious thing to have dear and wonderful people like that to leave a legacy that we would like to mimic........I want to be that to be that to my family and I can tell you do too, and I definitely think you will hon.
Thanks for writing this, it was a
blessing to read, and sound like it was a well deserved tribute.
You are a blessing for writing it too..............
Will be praying for you and your family, as I am sure she is very
very missed.

Love and Blessings, Nellie

cassidy adams said...

Thank you so much Nellie. You are so sweet and always say the most comforting things:) I know your family thinks the world of you!;)