If You Couldn’t Find God Today, He was at my House


Blackberries (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Two berries of the Rubus genus. The red one to...

Two berries of the Rubus genus. The red one to the left is Rubus idaeus, which is commonly known as raspberry. Its length is approximately 26 mm (only the fruit part) and it measures about 18 mm at its widest diameter. The black berry to the right is Rubus fruticosus – the common blackberry – with a length of 33 mm and a maximum diameter of 17 mm. Both berries are food used by Homo sapiens sapiens and are therefore cultivated. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Apples on an apple-tree. Ukraine. Рус...

English: Apples on an apple-tree. Ukraine. Русский: Яблоня со спелыми плодами. Украина. Latina: Malus domestica (Borkh., 1803) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Few people would recognize perfect if it slapped them in the face to get their attention and showed them photo after photo of itself.  Fewer still, are the moments of perfection. However, I recognized this illusive creature today. Having recognized perfection, I realized that God was very near.

My husband and I took a ride on the Artic Cat tonight at 8:30 to a huge stand of blackberry bushes growing along a fence row at the end of our road. With my bucket in hand, we picked the large sweet berries as the lightening bugs put on a show around us. So magical were the small bugs that I stopped picking several times just to watch the show.

Now, God didn’t have to give us small, harmless bugs with super bright lights in their butts to light up the night sky in June and July every year, here in the south, but He did. Why did he? Was he as amused at the idea of a bug who called for a mate by turning on his butt light as we are? I have to believe that He is. In fact, I know that God was watching with us as we, like children, oohed and aawed over the beauty and magic that filled the night. It is a phenomenon that can’t be expressed with words.

We filled the bucket, got back onto the four-wheeler and drove to another location. The sparkles of light were everywhere around us. We found an apple tree loaded with apples ready to be picked. We filled our bag with apples and drove on. There were bushes completely covered in white balls of blooms. The mountainside appeared to be covered in snow.

The sunset was red, orange and amber. A cool breeze blew across my face. My thought was, “This is a perfect summer night.”

What is perfection? It is whatever you believe it to be. For me, when all or many of the things I love come together all at once, I see perfection. Others might find fault with my perfection. I may see nothing perfect in your idea of perfection. The main thing is to recognize when a perfect moment, hour of day or successive hours, comes together. Drink it in. Commit it to memory. It won’t happen too often and in fact, may never happen for you again.

Perfection is fleeting. We live in a cursed world that is crumbling. We have no right to expect much. But, when things come together to give you all the elements that give you joy or peace, recognize that perfection is taking place. God is always in the midst of perfection. There is no perfection without Him.

My idea of a perfect summer night: The grass and low sky is lit up with dancing lightening bugs, A cool breeze is blowing while I drink the fragrance of honeysuckles and petunias. There are so many black, sweet berries that a two-gallon pail is filled withing ten minutes. I have no urgent tasks to complete. I am free to enjoy every minute.

I am praying that each of you find a moment of perfection this summer. Remember, it may be fleeting, but it will be glorious.

A Drunk Driver’s Legacy: Final chapter

Orthopedic implants to repair fractures to the...

Orthopedic implants to repair fractures to the radius and ulna. Note the visible break in the ulna. (right forearm) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Using underarm crutches. Español: Cam...

English: Using underarm crutches. Español: Caminando con dos muletas de aluminio. Polski: Osoba z dwiema kulami pachowymi. Svenska: Kryckor av aluminium. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The day finally came when the doctor had no choice but to tell me the truth. “Your ankle was operated on to remove shards of bone. You have a large metal screw holding the two halves of the major bone together. Your foot was snapped back on top of itself, pulling all of the ligaments and tendons apart. I’m sorry. You will never walk on your left foot again.” I sat in my wheelchair and sobbed.

When my mother-in-law dropped me off at my apartment, I had already made up my mind that I was going to walk again,unassisted. I tried using the crutches the doctor had prescribed, putting just a little bit of weight on my left foot. The pain was so great that it nauseated me. I had to lie down and wait for the worst of the pain to wear off.

Every day, after my husband left for work, I would practice walking with the crutches, not putting any weight on my left foot. Even this was difficult and painful due to the damage done to my right arm. Using the crutches hurt. After a few days, I went back to practicing without the crutches. I would stand next to a wall and put a little weight on my foot. It was good that I was home alone because I could scream as much as I needed to without disturbing anyone.

I had a little extra time before the baby was due. I had four hormone shots to prevent a miscarriage while I was in Intensive Care. Each shot delayed the birth by a week to ten days. I was able to walk with one crutch as a stabilizer the day before my check up with the orthopedic surgeon.

I remember sitting in the waiting room at the Hattiesburg  Clinic, giving myself a pep talk before they called my name. I used the crutch to talk every agonizing step down the hall to the doctor. He was seated on a stool, expecting me to be in the wheelchair. I left the crutch at the door and took ten of the most painful steps in my life. I collapsed into the doctor’s arms, exhausted. We both cried as he held me. “It isn’t possible,” the doctor repeated over and over.

It wasn’t possible, but God allowed it to happen in spite of the damage. It was three years before my gait resembled anything close to a normal walk. The pain is ever with me. Some days, my ankle won’t cooperate and I have to use a crutch, but I know it is only temporary.

I’ve had to have surgery on my neck because all seven discs were ruptured. The pain shoots down my shoulders, making sleeping difficult. I live with a ruptured disc in my lower back, as well. I have to be constantly aware of what I pick up, how I pick it up and how I carry it. Otherwise, I will be suffering when the internal swelling presses on my spinal cord.

There were three miracles allowed me by God after the accident. The first one: I lived. The doctors were amazed that I lived at all. Someone with my injuries usually doesn’t make it. The second miracle: I carried my unborn child and gave birth to her after 30 minutes of hard labor. The third miracle: I have been walking since nine months after the accident. The screw was removed from my ankle a few years ago. The metal sleeve is still in my right arm. I have two metal bars in my neck. I currently get steroid injections in my neck and lower back to help ease the pain. My legs never regained the lost muscle. I will always be the woman with the skinny legs.

The drunk driver lived a lonely life, in and out of jail for drunk driving over the years. Finally, one day, he took his own life. I don’t know what his demons were. I’ll never know what finally drove him over the edge. Maybe, he just couldn’t forgive himself for causing so many people so much pain. I forgave him, but no amount of forgiveness could take back the pain he caused. What did he leave behind? What was his legacy?

Larry left no immediate family, just sisters who had grown tired of his drinking and driving. He left behind a woman who has been in pain since the day of the accident.

Not all victims of a drunk driver die. There are those of us who live with constant pain. Those of us who wonder for the rest of our lives, “What if I had left fifteen minutes earlier or ten minutes later that day?” “What if?”

In spite of everything, I have much to be happy about. I have been blessed and I don’t sit around feeling sorry for myself. I continue to push myself day by day, accomplishing as much each day as I possibly can. You don’t let the freak things, the bad, unlucky, and sour days define who you are. They are just days that need a do-over. So, get up and try again. Do it over again, if you need to. There is joy in every day, but you have to be looking for it.



Someone special says I have inspired him

I want to thank Mike and apologize to him for taking so long to post this award. I got really busy and kept meaning to pick up the award, but never got around to it until tonight. His blog, JustMikeMon, is one that people will want to check out for themselves. Once they have visiting, they will realize that this blog does inspire others to act. This is a man dedicated to God, someone to admire. Thanks, Mike, for the honor.

The award rules:

1. Display the award logo on your blog.
2. Link back to the person who nominated you.
3. Nominate 15 other bloggers for this award and link to them.
4. Notify those bloggers of the nomination and the award’s requirements

My nominees:











A Bouquet of Awards


Love (Photo credit: praram)














To win any award is a high honor for me. To win a bouquet of awards is beyond measure. I am very grateful to Chant D’Oasien for this bouquet of awards. He is one of my newest friends and has a blog that is totally different and very interesting. I am also learning a little French each time I visit him. Please, check out his blog. He has a beautiful motto concerning life.

The rules are: 1-Visit and thank the one who gave you the / distinctions. 2-Appoint 10 bloggers. 3-Copy and paste on your blog awards 4.-Answer questions.

QUESTIONS: 1-What is the meaning of life for you? My life means that God foresaw me and found value in me and created me to fulfill my purpose on earth. I am here to uplift, encourage, pray for and love my fellow man. Yes, I know, I fail miserably at times. Still, that is my purpose, so I try again tomorrow.

2What is happiness? Happiness is fleeting. It can be a day with my family enjoying something new or gathered around a campfire talking about sweet memories. Joy, however, is an everyday emotion.

3 Why did you create this blog? I wanted to connect with people around the world.

4 – What is the most important in your life: Love or fame? Love is the most important thing to me.

5-What is the thing you like about blogging? Writing allows me to express myself and learn so much about others and how we are so much alike, no matter how different we are.

6-What is the best decision you made? I have made many decisions that have affected my life. I would say the best one was the one that led to my two beautiful children.

7-Do you think unconditional love really exist in a relationship? Love, by meaning, is unconditional. If a person places conditions on his or her love, it isn’t love.

8-Do you believe in Karma? If yes then what is the good and the bad karma to you? Karma is about the same as good or bad luck. Whatever happens to a person in life are the consequences of his own actions. We make our own karma or luck by the life we live.

9-Do you believe in rebirth or life after death? If yes, then why? I am a child of Jehovah God. When I die, I will rest until Jesus comes in the sky and calls me forth to live again in my glorified body with him and all those who have believed in him.

10 – What is the best time of your life? I believe now is the best time of my life. I am free to do what I please.

My choices for the bouquet of awards are:











A Drunk Driver’s Legacy: Part Two

Lateral view of the right hip bone. Acetabular...

Lateral view of the right hip bone. Acetabular fossa is at centre, inside the lunate surface. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

State fruit - Tomato

State fruit – Tomato (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Dolly Parton at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville.

Dolly Parton at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When I awoke in the hospital, my mother was standing over me. I remembered hearing her voice while I was unconscious. She and the doctor were talking about my probably brain damage. I thought I had been dreaming. Since I could not remember the accident, I had to be told what happened. My first question upon learning there had been a car accident was, “Oh, my God, did I hurt anybody?”

I was told that a man who had just been released from a mental institute, without driver’s license, stole his mother’s car and went to a bar to get drunk. He caused the accident and the only injury to him was a broken nose. He spent one night in jail. He was told that, if I should lose my unborn child, he would be charged with manslaughter. His mother and sister prayed outside my door day and night that I would not lose my baby. Not because they had compassion for me, but rather, they did not want Larry to go to prison.

I was not allowed visitors in ICU except for immediate family. My pelvis had been crushed. I could not be put in a cast because I was pregnant. My left hip had been broken by the door handle that was twisted, leaving a sharp, hard metal spike to break my hip bone.

My left ankle had been crushed. Surgery was performed to remove the shards of bone and what remained was glued and screwed together in an attempt to keep the foot attached to my leg. It was cosmetic, not meant for walking on. I wore the cast on my ankle, up to my knee for the rest of my pregnancy. I knew that six months was too long to wear a cast, but my doctor told me it was because I was pregnant and it was taking longer. They did not want to tell me that I would never walk on that leg again.

My right arm was broken. Because I could not sit up, surgery was performed to place a sleeve over the broken bones and my arm was in a sling. Both arms were at 90 degree angles for several months. The left arm had nerve damage. I had to have physical therapy every day to eventually straighten both arms. I can still remember how painful it was. I cried and begged them to stop pulling on my arms. The PT specialists would ask, “Don’t you want to hold your baby one day?” I would try harder.

I had hairline fractures all over my body, a severe concussion, lacerations on my left arm and face. The stitches were removed too soon from my right arm, leaving a seven-inch scar that was an inch wide in some places. My left ear had to be sown back in place.

When I first conceived my daughter, my body tried to reject her. This is known as morning sickness. For a very small number of women, the body reacts violently to expel the foreign invader. I could not keep water down, much less any food. Nothing helped ease the nausea. By the time I was three months pregnant, I had lost ten pounds. I weighed 110 pounds at the time of the accident. I was on drip and still could not keep food down. The doctors were desperate.

They would come into my room with cheeseburgers bought from fast food restaurants to tempt me to eat. I would try, but it always came back up. One day, a doctor asked me if I was craving anything. I said I would like a tomato and mayonnaise sandwich. It had to be a fresh, vine-ripened tomato. It was around the first of May and tomatoes would not be ready in South Mississippi for another four to six weeks. A nurse offered, “There is a vine-ripened tomato somewhere in the US. We will find it.”

The call went out for a ripe tomato. It wasn’t long before a trucker heard about me and brought a bushel of vine-ripened tomatoes to the hospital. The cafeteria sliced the tomato and sent the mayo and fresh bread to my room, where the doctor prepared the sandwich and cut it into four equal pieces. I ate the first quarter of the sandwich with three doctors and four nurses cheering me on. It was the first thing I had eaten in almost four months. I was down to 99 pounds.

I had been given a shot for nausea before I attempted to eat the sandwich. I managed to eat half of it without throwing it back up. There were cheers of success heard throughout the hospital. I was able to keep one sandwich in my stomach each day. If I pushed the issue by adding sandwich meat or tried to eat more than one, up it all would come.

I was weak, I was in pain and my legs were wasting away. I did not consider at the time that I was losing muscle from both legs. I had always been a skinny kid. I had Dolly Parton breasts (mine were natural) and Olive Oil legs. I was not told that I would never get back the muscle that I had lost. So much had been kept from me. The doctors had been afraid that the truth would be too much for me to handle.

I was bed-ridden for months, my baby grew restless, kicking me without mercy because she had to lie in one position day after day. I was taken to the doctor’s office, after I had been released from the hospital, by my Mother-in-Law for checkups. Each visit, I was promised the cast would come off my leg. They would take x-rays and give me the bad news. “It isn’t healing correctly because the baby is using all the calcium in your body. Give it some more time.” I cried every time. How was I going to take care of my baby if I was stuck in a wheelchair.

I promise, if you come back for part three, you will witness a miracle.



A Drunk Drivers Legacy: Part One

McLain Leaf River Bridge

McLain Leaf River Bridge (Photo credit: cmh2315fl)

Fetus at 18 weeks after fertilization 3D Pregn...

Fetus at 18 weeks after fertilization 3D Pregnancy (Image from gestational age of 20 weeks). Retrieved 2007-08-28. A rotatable 3D version of this photo is available here, and a sketch is available here. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This map shows the incorporated and unincorpor...

This map shows the incorporated and unincorporated areas in Forrest County, Mississippi, highlighting Petal in red. It was created with a custom script with US Census Bureau data and modified with Inkscape. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A legacy is something you leave behind after you’ve left this world.  On April 14, 1973, I met a drunk driver head-on. I had just left work for the night, watching the children as their parents worked out at the spa. It was around 9:30 that night that I approached the Leaf River Bridge in Petal, Mississippi.

I graduated from high school at the age of 16. I skipped a couple of grades, so I was always the youngest student in all of my classes. I thought I was grown and capable of making my own decisions about my life. I was in love and determined to get married. My mother pleaded with me. She knew I was too young, but my will was stronger than her will.  Mike and I got married in June 1971.

I won’t lie and say it was easy. Mike was 19 and still just a kid too. We fought, made up and fought again. We loved each other, we just needed to grow up. Mike worked with his dad building houses and I worked at the only spa in town. It was a luxury spa complete with indoor pool, saunas, work-out rooms, health food bar and nursery for the children. I worked a split shift, four hours in the early morning and four hours each night. When I left work on April 14, I was headed to the next town to meet Mike. He had been shooting in a billiard tournament all week.

I had just learned that I was three months pregnant. This was very exciting news to me because my womb was tiled downward and the likelihood of pregnancy was very slim. I had been doing exercises for a year in an attempt to prepare my womb in case I should get pregnant.

It was a starless night that Friday as I approached the bridge. I will never know if I had seen the car about to hit me head-on at 65 miles-per-hour. I don’t remember the accident. My doctors told me it was my mind’s way of protecting me. The horror of seeing a car coming straight at me on the bridge was more than I could safely deal with, so I blocked it out.

The man was traveling too fast as he approached the bridge from the opposite end. He realized he was going to hit the car in front of him, so he gunned his engine and passed the car. That is when he saw me. It was too late. He slammed into my Ford Fairlane so hard that he pushed my car 800 yards off the bridge and down an embankment. My car came to a stop, dangling over the river. I was unconscious with the car’s engine sitting in my lap, pinning me to the seat.

I have no way of knowing how long I had been there when a motorist saw the wreck from a access road parallel to where my car had come to rest. The man in the car was an off-duty policeman. He had his wife and two of his three young sons with him. They were returning home after visiting relatives that night. He told his wife he was going to pull over and walk down the embankment from his side and see if anyone was still in the wrecked cars. My mother asked him to let someone else handle the accident, but he insisted.

“It’s Barbara. Oh my God, it’s Barbara,” my dad yelled back to my mom. He got to me first after tumbling down the embankment on his side, wading the water and climbing up the embankment on my side. My five-foot, two-inch tall mother must have crawled to get to me.

There was no jaws of life back in those days. My dad flagged down another vehicle and enlisted the help of two more men to break the seat and slide me out from under the car’s motor. When the ambulance arrived, my mother rode with me. The drunk was riding in the same ambulance. At that point, no one knew whose fault the accident had been. The drunk wasn’t talking and I was not able.

My mother told me weeks later that the drunk threw up in the ambulance. That’s when they knew he had been heavily drinking. I was in intensive care for three weeks. The doctors told Mike and my parents that I had a two-percent chance of making it. My unborn daughter was given no chance at all. If I did make, they said I would most certainly have brain damage. That is still debatable.

Please come back and read part two. If you have never seen a miracle, you will want to read what happened to me.

God’s Green Earth: Nothing can grow unless it is first buried.

Butterfly feeding from butterfly bush

Butterfly feeding from butterfly bush (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Nothing can grow unless it is first buried. Stop and think about this for a second.

I feel so close to God when I am gardening. Life began in a garden and God so loved to talk with his created there. I love the scripture in Genesis where God walked with man in the cool of the day. Can you imagine?

Actually, we can have this same experience. God and I talk as I plant, weed, harvest and just appreciate the beauty of my roses, gardenia bushes, hydrangea and multitude of other flowers. I tell Him how fascinated I still am at the miracle of a tree inside a tiny seed.

Nothing can grow unless it is first buried. The beans can’t grow until you dig the earth and bury the seed. Sometimes, God uses the birds to drop the seed. Other times, He uses the animals who eat the berries and nuts, then redeposit them through their dung. Doesn’t sound too appetizing, I know, but wonderful fruits grow from the waste of animals.

It may take decades, but a 100-year-old Live oak began as a buried acorn. The cycle repeats itself over and over, all over the world. What about you? Are you growing?

What do you need to bury in order that you might grow? Are you still angry because you won’t let go of the injustice of a husband who cheated on you? Are you still hurt that your parents beat you as a child? Does anger still well up inside you every time you are reminded that your sister was the favorite and inherited all of mom and dad’s wealth? What are you still angry about?

Whatever your hurt or the injustice of your situation, you will not grow until you bury the feelings that are strangling you. Do not misunderstand. I don’t mean that you should bury those feelings inside yourself.  Never do that. Take those emotions out and have a good look at them. Have they ever made you feel good about yourself? Have you been able to move on in life despite these emotions? How do you bury them?

Accept that the past happened. You were helpless at the time. We live in a cursed world that will never be perfect, just or honorable. You can’t undo the mistakes you made or change the way you grew up. What you can do is decide what kind of person you want to be, where you want to go in life and how you want to treat others. When you look at the past hurts, examine them well.

Go ahead and think about what happened, how you felt and what resulted. If you need to, go to the person who hurt you and let them know how much you were hurt by their actions. Forgive them. No, forgiveness does not mean it was ok for them to do what they did. It means you are taking away  their power to hurt you further. If it were a game of checkers, you would call it a draw.

With all the pain and ugliness before you, go outside and dig a hole. How deeply you dig depends upon how much hurt you need to bury. When the hole is ready, pick up a handful of soil and say, “God, I am burying my anger today so I can grow. Throw the soil into the hole. Pick up another handful and say, “God, today I am burying the fear and control that the person(s) has had on my life.” Throw the soil into the hole.

When the hole is half-full with soil, plant a shrub, bush or tree and finish burying your pain, stress, shyness, etc. If you would rather plant a seed, wait until all the soil has been returned to the hole and place the seed inside your thumb print in the soil and cover it. Water those dead emotions until something beautiful begins to grow.

You can’t drag the pain of the past forward in life and expect to grow. Visit your tree or plant and note how well it grows. That buried seed or roots of a plant represents you. You are now free to move forward and grow in your relationships.

Remember, holding on to the anger, bitterness, stress, anguish and/or fear will not allow you to become who you can be. It was wrong what they did to you. They should have to pay, you say. They are paying, whether they are aware of it or not. If they don’t pay today, they will pay tomorrow. God promised that the unjust will not go unpunished.

Now, walk in your garden in the cool of the day and have a talk with your creator. Let Him put His arm around you as the two of you admire how much you have grown.

If you don’t believe in the creator God, I pray you do believe in something. I can’t imagine not having someone to talk to about all that I am feeling. I suppose you can still bury your pain and grow, no matter what you believe in. Let go and live. It is what you do with your life that God will hold you responsible for, not what someone did in your past.

Happy gardening everyone. I love you. I hope to meet each of you in God’s new garden of Eden one day.