A Personal Relationship With God, acceptance, Forgiveness, God, God's love, God's Sovereignty, God's Will, Grace, Grace / Mercy, Heaven, Home, hope, How God Loves Us, In the presence of God, knowing God, Lessons learned, loving others, Relationship, Relationship With God, Righteousness, showing love

Dear Mom, I missed you yesterday


Yesterday in church Pastor Gearl recognized all the moms in the audience. His message was about how important a good mom is to her family and to others. I wish you could have been there with me.

I can’t believe it’s been 11 years since Jesus called you home.  I sure do miss you. I can’t count the times I’ve wanted to pick up the phone and call you. I loved to call you and share some way God blessed me, or tell you about something exciting or fun I did that day. 

My conversations over the years with you and Dad created some of my most precious memories. Though we spent most of our lives living a thousand miles apart, I loved being able to pick up the phone and connect with you just to chat.

You gave me something few of my friends here share. For almost 60 years you gave me consistency. You stayed married to each other, despite some extremely difficult times. No matter where I was, or what I was doing, or not doing, I could always pick up the phone and dial 712-246-2655. You were always there. I often brag about my hometown and my wonderful growing up years in my loving family to my friends. Most of them marvel at the wonderful childhood I enjoyed in our small Iowa hometown. Many of my friends have never known the consistence and security you and Dad gave me.

I know we didn’t have a perfect life, either. I know I gave you more than my share of grief and heartaches. For all those, I am genuinely sorry.

I have to confess, Mom: the day you died, I was absolutely jubilant. Not because you died, but because I knew where you were. Your suffering from the cancer that took you from us was over. Not only was I jubilant because I knew where you were. I was jubilant because I knew that someday we would be reunited and basking in the love of Jesus in God’s Kingdom forever. We’ll never be apart again. We’ll never know pain or suffering or sorrow or dismay or any other health problems. And you’d never have to fuss at me again to pick up my clothes.

What a glorious day that will be!

Until then, Mom, please know that I love you and miss you still. I am grateful for everything you were to me, everything you gave me, everything you taught me, and everything you did for me.

I will always love you,

Your loving son, Steve

God, Grace, Grace / Mercy, Home, Love


Friendship, God, Life, Personal, Relationship With God

I’ve Been To The Mountain Top — Literally and Spiritually

I spent the weekend in Huntsville, Alabama at the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. That’s the literal part. The North Alabama mountains are absolutely gorgeous and I love spending any time I can in that beautiful country.

Now for the spiritual part. I got to spend a few days with my favorite student ever, Laurie Winfield Bishop. She is married to a wonderful Christian man and they have raised threeme and beautiful and successful God-centered children, all now young adults. They are foster parents to Raeann,  a beautiful 14-year-old.  I have written about Winfield (that’s what I always called her, and she has always called me Sawyer–even in school.) and our special friendship before. To read about her and another one of my favorite students, click here.

Laurie and husband Lee and Raeann have busy lives and full schedules. But they made special time for me and we had a fantastic heart-felt reunion. Winfield said it was as if we had known each other for years and the friendship remains. What a blessing for me to get to spend time with her and her family.

The only downside for me was that I had to remember I have a former student who is now 48 years old. Oooooooh!

Friday night they took me to their small group Bible study with some other couples they meet with regularly. What a stimulating conversation we had in the book of Matthew.

It was one of two special mountain top experiences for me this weekend. I’ll write about my other mountain top experience in my other post today. Don’t miss it. In fact, click here to read it.