I am grateful that the veil was torn and I can talk to God anywhere, any time.

Good morning, God –

I know you won’t mind me talking to you in my gratefuls today. I just wanted to spill my feelings about church yesterday – I wanted to write it all down after church, but there wasn’t a time in the day when I could do that, so here I am, some of my thoughts now escaped and gone with the wind. Adam talked about the “resurrection of the body” yesterday from the Apostles Creed, but You already know that. It was good to hear, and it was really nice to think about Mom and heaven and imagine what it will be like. Not having a clue what it is like, would You please give Mom a big hug from me? And tell her that Dad is feeding the birds, and the squirrels. She’ll be so happy about that, I know. And let her know how the Royals are doing, too. And please tell her that Sam is still as wonderful as always, and he treats me like a princess and loves me and takes care of me and of Dad.

And please tell Mom that she has the most beautiful great grandchildren in the history of the world, and I really want her to know that the girls are talking to me again and it’s almost back to normal – Aunt Patsy was right – time does help to heal, along with lots of people praying and You intervening and softening and quietly showering grace and forgiveness.

I want Mom to know that her signature tablecloth will be used again at Thanksgiving, and hopefully, the house will be filled with laughter and family and lots of game-playing, and it won’t be the same without her at the table saying, “DEL-mar!” and “What can I pass you?” but we’ll talk about her and try to keep up the traditions.

You can tell her that if I were in charge of the world, she would have earned more than a few jewels in her crown for the 60+ years she cooked for Dad and his vegetarian extremely limited diet plan. Now I see why she came up with the crazy pear-on-lettuce-with-miracle-whip concoction – she had run out of ideas! She would be so proud of Dad though. He’s doing great here and is staying pretty active, especially when Sam and I put him to work. But let her know I totally get it now – you never know what he’s going to do or say next. He’s a mystery sometimes. Please reassure Mom that we are doing our best, all of us, to take care of him, as if he needs anyone to take care of him. He’s still as independent and stubborn as he always was, but she needs to know we get it now. And we love her for loving Dad, and we love Dad in her place while she’s there and we are here. And he’s not starving, but he’s certainly not getting any pears on lettuce with miracle whip. Oh, and make sure she knows that Dad finally found a place where he can worship with traditional music – she’ll like that, I think.

I really hope that Mom is able to see Judy and her brother and sisters and parents and friends all of the time now. I hope that she is singing in one of your choirs. I hope that she is organizing and alphabetizing to her heart’s content. I hope that she has an abundance of Reeses Peanut Butter Cups and cardinals and squirrels and maybe a little dog or cat to sit in her lap, and I hope she gets to go swimming and I hope that she is able to watch her grandchildren in adulthood from there and see her little great grands learning how to live. I hope that her laughter is filling spaces in Heaven. I can only imagine…

I love that my pastor grew up with the same kinds of thoughts and feelings that I had. You remember those thoughts and feelings that every once in awhile creep back in. The ones of doubt, of fear, of worrying that I might not have said just the right words in order to get the ticket to Heaven someday. The ones that You might return and I won’t be ready.  The ones that made me feel like I had to check boxes in order to be “saved.” I love that my pastor has taught me to study Your word, to study its history and the back story and the context for which it was written. I love that my pastor shared a common sense message yesterday that was full of hope and anticipation for Heaven and ended his message with one of his signature statements – that he not only believes Your promises, he’s counting on them. Me too, God. Me too.

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