Tag Archives: Christianity

Journeys End

The end of a Journey is within sight.

The end of a Journey is within sight.

Thank you Ageless One.
My wrinkles, scars, and bruises,
They demonstrate your generosity,
Your gift of longevity.

Thank you Rising Son.
Not as a complaint, but a deep sigh
For the aches and pains of old muscles and bones
They are a gift of a new day.

Thank you Heavenly Father,
Each wheezing breath is a prayer
For clarity of mind and heart.
They bow in reverence.

Thank you Gentle Loving Spirit
For my many faults and weaknesses,
And so I feel slovenly unworthy,
But still you pour out your bountiful graces.

Within your embrace I face the daily toils,
Overcoming the challenges of bigotry,
Sharing the smiles and cheerfulness with others
With an attitude of simple humbleness.

Thank you Infinity Personified,
So many memories and experiences,
Are at my beck and call.
More precisely during my frequent naps.

Thank you Grace Embodiment,
Each day is in itself a blessing.
I mightily struggle with my infirmities,
Blessed by each graceless fumbling bumbling  step.

Thank you Heavenly Gate Keeper
For holding the door slightly ajar.
My slow gait has dictated this pace.
Patience I have had to learn and relearn.

Thank you Everlasting Peace
I am coming, though staggeringly
Yes, I am coming, are you waiting?
I am anxiously anticipating my journeys end.

I am committed to You, My Lord.
With love and forgiveness your guarantee
My days, hours, and even minutes are known to you,
I stumble along my path with confidence.

Originally written: March 19, 2015

The poem was written over a period of several months.
It is a reflection on my life and growing old and
the changes that occur naturally.  It also acknowledges
the thoughts I have heard from others who have
and are on this journey.

I publish it in recognition of World Poetry Day March 21, 2015.


Embroidery of Life

A pink Rhodochrosite caboshon wirewrapped and dedicated to the memory of Auntie Rose Emmons

We were at a celebration of a long time friend who was retiring after 37 years.
We were in San Jose, CA at the Bella Mia Italian Restaurant. There were just
six of us. Steve and his wife Sue, Monica and Bret, and ZoAnn and I. Steve,
Monica, and ZoAnn taught third grade together in Morgan Hill Unified School
District for many years. They had formed a strong bond of fellowship and
friendship during those critical times. It was one of those special moments in
life when people share their memories with treasured stories of those “Camelot
Moments” in life.

One of the stories was a big surprise. Steve passed around to each of us a
sheet of paper with a story I had shared years before. It was a story from
my Aunt Rose Emmons. The following is the story Steve called Embroidery
of Life.

When I was little, my mother used to sew a great deal. I would sit at
her knee and look up from the floor and ask what she was doing. She
informed me that she was embroidering. As from the underside I watched
her work within the boundaries of the little round hoop that she held in her
hand, I complained to her that it sure looked messy from where I sat.

She would smile at me, lookd down and gently say, ” Child you go about
your playing for a while, and when I am finished with my embroidering
I will put you on my knee and let you see the front side.”

I would wonder why she was using some dark threads along with some
bright ones and why they seemed so jumbled from my view. A few
moments would pass and then I would hear Mother’s voice say, “Child,
come and sit on my knee.”

This I did only to be surprised and thrilled to see a beautiful flower, or a
sunset. I could not believe it, because from underneath it looked so messy.
Then my Mother would say to me, ” My child, from underneath it did look
messy and jumbled, but you did not realize there was a plan on the top.
It was a design. I was only following it. Now look at it from my side, and
you will see what I was doing.

Many times through the years I have looked up to heaven and said,
“Father, what are You doing?” He has answered, “I am embroidering
your life.” I say, “But it looks like a mess to me. It seems so jumbled. The
threads seem so dark. Why can’t they all be bright?” The father seems to
tell me, “My child, you go about your business of doing MY business, and
one day I will bring you to heaven and put you on my knee and you will see
the plan from My side.”

It is strange how a story of my Aunt Rose Emmons came back to me from a
dear friend at his retirement celebration. Steve had remembered the story
and typed it up to be shared with us many years later. I was amazed and
very proud of my Aunt. The story has taken on a life of it’s own.

A subtext to this story is that I have seen my Grandmother Mary Brinkman
crochet and embroider using the same hoops mentioned in the story. I have
fond memories of being in the small living room of the little duplex on 5th and
Pearce in Milwaukee, Wisconsin Grandmother sitting and crocheting. I
remember the clicketedy click tickedy tick of her needles and of her quiet
ways. I still have her treasured wedding gift of embroidered pillows
received 50 years ago on June 2, 1962.

Auntie Rose sent this story to me many years ago in an email. I thought it
was one of her personal experience. However, the story can be found in many
places on the web. I have found that the story is a common one. Here is one
link to the story elsewhere:

It does not take away from the reality of it in our family. Grandmother Mary
Brinkman did embroidery and crocheting. The pillows I have are real. The
memories of the house in Milwaukee are also true.

There Goes I, But for the Grace of God

  • There goes I, except for Grace of God.
    The homeless.
    The convicted.
    The disenchanted.
    The victims.
    The list is endless.
  • Yes, there goes I, except for Grace of God.
    The self enamored.
    The power hunger.
    The poor in spirit.
    Even those with out hope.
  • The list is endless.

Originally written:  December 9 1998

  • There have been so many instances that could have gone
    wrong in my life.  Is it by luck or happenstance or is
    it hard work and a willingness to help others that I am
    not in one of these situations?   Yet, I know there were
    moments when just luck or karma could have a sad
    result.  Sad and bad things happen to very good people.
  • When I see a disadvantaged person my heart goes out to
    them.  I know I could just as easily be standing where
    they are.  The way to live is to live for today and with
    love.  Love for your family and friends helping those
    with less and in need.  
  • I see young people sent to prison for what was considered
    mischief when I was a youngster.   On Guy Fawkes Night
    there was always mischief in the small town and county
    where I grew up.  Tipping over outhouses,  paper
    with cow dung lit on fire and doorbell rang,  door bell
    ringing and leaving.  Yet, when eggs thrown at a house
    stained the house the house was repainted by the culprits. 
    Of a small town of 5 streets there were 3 police cars looking
    for shenanigans with no success. Yet,  New Years
    Eve streamers decorated the park trees in the morning
    after.  We moved away from that small town to a large city
    when I was 11 years old.  I still like small towns.  Oh,
    yes I should mention that my dad was the town marshal
    and a deputy sheriff of county.
  • As a teenager I stepped on a corner of a policeman’s
    yard and then walked up the alley to my house.  My
    friend and I stood in the middle of the alley and talked. 
    I remember we laughed and joked about something at
    the mall.  About that time the policeman living on the
    corner stepped out into the alley and then went back into
    his house.  It was about ten minutes later when 2
    police cars turned into the alley from opposite ends with
    their lights on.  It scared us.  We ran in opposite directions. 
    I between houses and out into a large field.  About that
    time I heard the policemen yell, “Halt or I will shoot.” and
    then a pistol shot.  I kept on running.  Running in fact
    out of my shoes.   I ran for about 1/2 mile in the dark to
    a ditch.  There I stayed for an hour.  It seemed like
    forever.  I, then slowly walked home by roundabout way
    only to be captured as I approached my home.  The first
    question I was asked was; “What happened to your shoes?
    Do you often go out with just your stockings?”
  • I received a very stern lecture from the policeman about
    running from them.  I was informed about the possible
    consequences.  My father was not as generous.  Yet,
    my memory retains one punishment. I had to go the
    next day and apologize to the policeman on the corner
    whose lawn I stepped on.  He was a  Lieutenant on the
    cities police force.  I weeded and mowed his lawn for a
    couple weeks.  Every time I hated every agonizing
    moment of it.  Yet, the lesson was emblazoned upon my
    memory – Don’t mess with a policeman and don’t run away.
    They will catch up to you.
  • The sixteen year old neighbor boy ran into trouble with
    the same policeman.  He squealed his tires turning in
    front of his house.  The policeman warned him but he
    did not pay attention.  Within a couple of weeks he lost his
    license to traffic violations.  The policeman had given his
    car’s license number to other policeman who did him a
    favor of stopping that car anytime they could spot a
    moving violation. When he continued to drive he was
    arrested and spent time in jail.  When he got out he
    was as careful as I was around the neighborhood.
  • Yes,  I was lucky I did not end up in the boys home or
    reformatory as they were called then.  My life would have
    been very different. 

The Journey of My Soul

  • The journey of my soul
    It is not a straight path.
    It never was, nor will it be.
  • I meander, self-directed, others directed,
    And yes, even God directed.
    Hopefully more of the latter.
  • Each milestone a learning experience.
    A chance to share, to love, to learn,
    And to agonize.
  • It is the meandering
    That provides my growth.
    That expands my knowledge.
    That challenges my worn out ideas.
  • I meander with a purpose,
    To grow in love.

Originally written:   October 30, 1998

  • Yes,  I meander through life.   My life in review reveals the truth.
    The person I have become was educated by life’s good, bad
    and  ugly.   The changes, places,  and experiences all have combined
    to provide the background for the formation of a life.  The
    meandering is the spice.  Sometimes it is hot as a jalepano
    pepper.  Other times it is a lot of crushed ice.  There are times
    it is a dragster reaching the quarter mile posts. There are times
    when I have been wrong, wrong, wrong,  and have had to humbly
    apologize and change direction.  On other occasions the trail
    is straight and narrow.  In all of the meandering there was
    something to learn each day.  Sometimes too much to learn.
    I have learned to laugh at my foibles and be humble in life.

Creator of All Things

  • Oh, Creator of all things,
    • I acknowledge you.
    • All created by you.
  • I honor all.
    • From the unseen
    • To the visible.
  • I honor all
    • From the smallest
    • To the largest.
  • Oh, Creator of all things,
    • I thank You
    • For your gifts.

Originally written:  August 23, 1997