JOY --- Jesus On the JourneY

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Going Home

If I heard it once -- I must have heard it 25 times, "Oh, Jannie, you look so much like your sweet momma."  This weekend, we were at the Vaughn Hill Church of Christ, where I grew up, to do a marriage enrichment workshop. Being back on home turf, seemed to make my mother's day last for an entire week as I heard those words from so many of my mother's 80-90 yr-old friends.   I hadn't seen these ladies in almost 10 years -- and I was blessed beyond words!!! 


Terry took over all the workshop set-up so I could spend a few hours Friday afternoon with my long-time friend of 59 years, Charlene Bandy.  We talked nonstop as she took me out to see the house where I grew up and then on to surprise her 95-yr. old mother in the retirement home where she lives now.




Charlene saved this sampler for me that her mother had stitched.    Beside it is a little pitcher that was always filled with milk  and on their table at every meal.  It was such a precious link to my past.





 
So many highlights of the weekend:
>>>it was fun doing a workshop again with my man -- it's been  2-3 years since we'd been able to do one -- so we had to tweak the powerpoints a bit. . .  I'm still amazed at how much work Terry puts into those!

>>>getting back with Mark Moran and meeting his wife, Annie -- they were awesome hosts and it was so good to reconnect and share in their work for the weekend.  That Church is truly blessed to have them!

>>>>being with Boyd Goodson and his sweet wife, Bonnie who've been married 57 years and have served in ministry together for sooooo many years.  What a testimony they are to living a life of love.

>>>>seeing the families that have grown up and remained part of this church and their children (who were preschoolers when we moved away)  now leading and guiding the growth of this church family.  (There was a special group of 4-5 year olds that my mother taught  35 years ago and she was certain they were going to be the future of this Church.  She put extra effort into making sure she taught them the Bible stories in great detail in her Sunday school class.  So many from that Sunday school class are leading the Vaughn Hill Church today!   I think Mom and Dad are looking down proud of what they've all become.)

>>>being together with our couple friends from our early days of marriage.  We were part of a young married's group that enjoyed getting together about once a month.


 
Well, 40 years and lots of gray hair later we all got together Saturday night for dinner at Paul and Doris Joiners -- what fun catching up and remembering the fun we'd all had -- amazing how many knee replacements there already have been in that group! LOL

>>> It was a weekend that honored and gave tribute to my parents. I was overjoyed when I heard it mentioned that the "Thursday School" (a Mother's Day Out program) had just had their graduation the night before.  My mother and another lady had started that ministry some 40+ years ago and it is still going on!

In our workshop we asked the couples to describe married couples that they had observed and wanted to model their marriage after, many talked about my parents and what they had taught them about commitment and care for each other, remembering all those years Mom cared for Dad when his muscular dystrophy left him in a wheelchair.  So many of the people at this Church would come to her rescue when she needed help.

Going back home was such an awesome experience of renewal and reconnecting. We drove away with hearts brimming over,  realizing God had done something huge for us --bringing us back to where we had dated, fell in love, started our marriage and ministry together to do this workshop.  We thank God for making it all come together in such an unbelievable way.


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