Thursday, February 18, 2021

Gazing Back From Heaven Will Our Choices Matter?

"Let all that you do be done in love... Love never ends."   --- 1 Corinthians 16:14, 13:8


So. Valentine's Day. Rather a bust at my house.

Varied reasons, but let's just say one centered around the loss of my friend, Betty, who died in 2020 and who always sent me Valentines. Always.

But this February was the first without her thoughtfulness.

And even though months ago God gave me a vision of Betty in Heaven and confirmed it next day (all incredibly awesome)--still--I sat here in a lamplit pool of self-pity.

But then I stepped over to my tiny closet room and shuffled through my blue-painted shoebox for cards mailed to me till I found a sweet Betty Valentine. I brought it to my desk, held it, placed it beside me. 

Then I listened to songs by Bread and had a good cry. But after that? Jesus soothed my heart as only He can. And it's wild how he can both comfort and correct in the same moment.

See, I'd been thinking, "Maybe I won't do Valentine's Day next year. I received only 2 paper cards and now I'm feeling that verse about how 'the love of many will grow cold' has come true. Like people don't even give anymore unless it's convenient."

But yeah, guess what Jesus said to those thoughts? "Debra, keep doing the right thing. Step beyond the status quo. In fact, next year I want you to send out even more Valentines."

Isn't that just like Him? 

I actually giggled. Next morning online, I discovered the cutest Valentine's ever, then ordered 3 times more than usual(!) and had fun in the searching and buying.

See, I am determined not to slide into that worldly apathy swirling around us. "Dear Lord, do not let me go there!", I pray, "Especially since I have fewer years left here than ones I've already lived."

Basically, I want to finish well, not sloppily, lazily, even if Christians tell me it's ok, to be expected and can't be helped.

No when, from Heaven, I think back upon my life on Earth I want so much to feel, "Forever I'll be grateful for the times I obeyed God, even when it was hard." 

We are here for such a short time. 

Yet the love God asks us to show? I believe somehow it will matter for all eternity. Whether it be Valentines or any myriad of responses, our eternity will reflect every obedience, every moment of love we chose to show here.

Again, somehow, and oh my: eternity is such a long, long time.

"Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins."   ---1 Peter 4:8

" By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”   ---John 13:35

A very, very special thanks to the two ladies who did send me paper Valentines!


Now, this is lovely. It's a live feed of an outdoor skating rink in New Hampshire. Thanks so much, Susan H., for sharing this! I've often sat here and watched people skating or, like the other morning, staring at the gleaming reflection of the sunrise upon the surrounding old houses. 

So wonderful, especially these days when we're unable to travel around.


And here's something a bit humorous:

One of my old high schools has videos online especially for incoming Freshman. In one video, someone stated, "And finally the auditorium has been refurbished! It's beautiful now."

My first thought? "Wait! It was recently totally gutted and refurbished while I was there." Then it hit me--hard. That was in 1976. Forty-five years ago!

Gulp.  シ

(See, I can prove this. This is a recent-ish photo from that auditorium and don't those chairs and carpet scream 1976? Hmm?)

The outside of the auditorium is to the left, below. This part of the school has always been beautiful. It's over 100 years old (click to enlarge). 


Please remember: My posts are ALWAYS about more than they appear to be.


"For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15


Betsy said...

I'm sorry about your Valentine's Day, but happy for you how it ended. I rarely ever think about sending Valentines out because we really don't celebrate it much. I don't know why. Dennis and I woke up, looked at each other and said, "Happy Valentine's Day" and that was it! Seriously. No cards, no gifts, no flowers or candy. We just have never really done much. Anniversaries either. If I wanted something, he would give it without hesitation and the same on my part. I tell him he's my Valentine every day and he shows me the same.
I feel bad though if friends think I don't care about them. I do. It's just not one of my "love languages" I guess.
I enjoyed all of your photos today and the nostalgia. I graduated in 1978 and they just redid the auditorium two years ago. I reacted much the same as you did! Can you believe it's been that long? It sure doesn't feel like it. It reminds me that this life is just a "vapor in the wind". We need to prepare for eternity and that has me very excited and happy.
Blessings and love and a belated Happy Valentines Day Debra!

Pam said...

"...let all you do be done in love. Love never fails." I remember when I was a teen, I memorized the "love chapter" from Corinthians 13. It's pretty straightforward. Although I have fallen, often, God's love has steadied me, always. When you're young, you have no way of knowing how life will turn out, but I believe if we continuously embrace God's love and his plans, we will make it. Love will never fail. I'm holding onto that promise!