Saturday, November 06, 2010


That's how I feel. broken. And I'm sure many of you have felt/feel the same way for whatever reason. Mine today is simply missing my mom.

I was able to attend (by myself!!) a mini-conference at Coggin Ave. Baptist Church where the theme was "Our stories for His glory." I heard several women speak of hardships they have gone through and continue to go through and how the Lord has helped them and brought them to where they are now. It was SO good for me to sit there and listen. Thankfully my precious husband watched our babies for me, even bringing me our youngest to nurse at lunchtime :o).

At the beginning there was a time of singing where I saw a mom with her arm around her (older) daughter, just so sweetly giving her arm squeezes and rubbing her back. Boy, did my tears ever flow. I couldn't sing after seeing that. I can't say I was jealous, but I know I sat there and mourned that my mom would never do that for me again. I don't wish for my mom back here, not for a second, but I so loved her presence on this earth. What a gift it was for me. And the fact that I got to enjoy that dear lady for 30 years of my life. Incredible. How blessed I was and am!

There is definitely a process to grief and I don't think mine fits the "norm." I see myself (slowly) getting stronger and trusting in my great God who has never failed me. I found these beautiful verses just this evening:

Psalms 34:17-18
The righteous cry, and the LORD heareth,
and delivereth them out of all their troubles.
The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart;
and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit.

My dad asked me this evening if I was "making friends." Not really, although I do have some dear ones. Oh, there are Christian women I love so much and would cherish a closer friendship with. However, I think it's good for me now to be (mostly) alone with my thoughts and my little family. In time, I pray the Lord will send me a "kindred spirit" friend- one with whom I can pray, talk, laugh, share , encourage, cry, etc.! My mom was all that for me, and I thank God for our many years of friendship.

As I continue to grieve, I want to be so careful to not let it consume me. It does get easier, praise the Lord. I know a lot of my thoughts seem/are very selfish. I'm just sharing what's on my heart, if for no other reason that just getting it out. I love the fact that the Lord hears me when I cry. What a comfort, what a source of joy.

I know this post is so scattered and my thoughts are everywhere! I guess to sum it up- God is good and continues to give healing to the broken. Now go give your mom a hug, if you can :o)

Sunday, October 24, 2010

my 530th post

What is significant about that, you might ask. Well, nothing at all- I just needed a subject for this post. I've had SO much on my mind lately. I haven't blogged in a LONG time. Life has truly taken a new turn. Almost every situation has taken on a new meaning. Eternity, eternity, eternity. I go to different events and I look around almost in a daze- knowing that this life is so short and so fleeting. When I told my Granny that I could be the next to die, she said, "don't say that!" But it's TRUE!

How I long to live a life that is fruitful and pleasing to the Lord. I want to die to self What else truly matters anyway? I was listening to the radio the other day and heard a lady say that our main goal as parents should not be to raise godly children. At first I was kind of taken aback. Her explanation cleared it up. She said our main goal should be to be godly parents for our children. God is in control of salvation of our children. We cannot control whether or not they will be godly, but we are commanded to "train up a child in the way he should go." That really made sense to me and helped me.

I see people living just for today. taking no thought of eternity. fulfilling every physical desire they want. Oh, how it burdens me. I long to see an awakening, a sobering, a reviving of heart and soul. I want to be first in line. I want my desires to know God more to mulitiply times a million. I want to be a light for my great Saviour who purchased me with His blood. Me! The enormity of it amazes and humbles me. That's one thing I truly miss about my dear mom. She, without a doubt, lived for the Lord. He was her heart's desire. She strived to KNOW HIM. What a heritage to pass down. I'm so humbled that the Lord would grant me the privilege to be her daughter. I remember when she first called me from the hospital crying quietly and said, "Sarah, it's my heart." From then on, it was never the same. And it never will be.

I miss my mom. so much it makes my heart sting with pain. I think back to her funeral and wish I could feel every day like I felt that day. I felt SO CLOSE to heaven and God. I KNEW that my mom was rejoicing and praising and thanking her Lord. It was seriously one of the best days of my life. I know God so kindly did that for me. I watched as they lowered her casket into the freshly-digged earth. I miss her physical body.

I will never again be invited for dinner at her house or try to cook a nice meal for her and my dad. I will never again call her from my cell phone. I will never again ask her advice on parenting or marriage. I won't feel her hug me or have her sit by me and play Jeopardy. I won't ever again share the news of another pregnancy (should the Lord bless us with another child) or see her beaming face as she holds a brand new grandbaby with tears of thankfulness streaming down her cheeks. I won't laugh with her or cry on her shoulder. I will never again tuck her little wisps of hair behind her ears or see her winning smile. I will never show her another photograph or do another Bible challenge with her. I won't have the privilege of hearing her teach my children about God and what really matters in life. I could go on and on and on. She was my encourager and such a blessing in my life.

I guess I'll call it quits for now. I've been wanting to write so badly. My heart is just spilling out with thoughts and emotions. I hope to write more later.

So teach us to number our days,
that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.
Psalm 90:12

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Jadon, aka. JBird, aka. BIRD!, aka. Jadon Mikey

I know, we've got some silly nicknames for our little guy. By the way, he's 9 1/2 months old and is now sporting TWO new teeth. He makes my heart soarrrrrrr!

I LOVE YOU, Jadon Michael!!!

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This is now.

The girls have grown up SO much. sigh. We had the privilege of keeping Abby for a few days and enjoyed her lots. She's definitely a fun girl to be around. and of course, I had to break out the camera. How could I not?! :o)

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That was then...

This is Mikayla and her cousin Abby when they were younger.

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Monday, September 27, 2010

The Shaer Boys

This family is absolutely precious! They were lots of fun and had they had tons of energy. Such handsome boys!!

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Friday, August 27, 2010

Our 3 kids

I LOVE our children!! It's hard to get a pic of them all together and semi-happy. This will do for now ;o)

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Tuesday, August 24, 2010

An insightful man once penned these words...

o death! why dost thou touch the tree beneath whose spreading branches weariness hath rest? Why dost thou snatch away the excellent of the earth, in whom is all our delight? If thou must use thine axe, use it upon the trees which yield no fruit; thou mightest be thanked then. But why wilt thou fell the goodly cedars of Lebanon? O stay thine axe, and spare the righteous. But no, it must not be; death smites the goodliest of our friends; the most generous, the most prayerful, the most holy, the most devoted must die.

And why? It is through Jesus' prevailing prayer—"Father, I will that they also, whom Thou hast given Me, be with Me where I am." It is that which bears them on eagle's wings to heaven. Every time a believer mounts from this earth to paradise, it is an answer to Christ's prayer.... Lord, Thou shalt have them. By faith we let them go."


Thursday, August 19, 2010

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Meet the Hamiltons

Ha ha, I'm sure you (most of you) already know them. They are some of the dearest people around! Love you guys :o)

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more from the wedding

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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The day of death

A good name is better than precious ointment;
and the day of death than the day of one's birth.
It is better to go to the house of mourning,
than to go to the house of feasting:
for that is the end of all men;
and the living will lay it to his heart.
Ecclesiastes 7:1,2

Yesterday marked one month since my mom left this earth to be with her LORD. I see more and more how the above verses are true. Hard, but true. Death is real. Death has come and will continue to come. Only God knows who will make their death appointment next. It may be me. It may be you. Death makes a person think. And that's a good thing.

I think one thing I'm learning is that God never intended for my mom or our Jada (the baby I miscarried) to have ANY MORE TIME ON THIS EARTH than what He gave them. For my mom it was 54 years, almost 55 and for Jada it was just a few weeks. My mom was never intended to celebrate our Jadon turning 8 months old with us. She cared so much for her grandchildren, mainly for their souls. I truly believe she left them enough lessons/care/love/words/prayers/tears/kindnesses/gifts, etc. for a lifetime. She taught us all of God. What a heritage to leave. As Psalm 31:15 says, "my times are in thy hand." As humans we tend to think that they had so much earthly "potential." There is a far bigger and greater picture. God has total knowledge, total control of EVERYTHING. All that He does is good.

Death is so painful for those left on this earth. Since my mom died, several others have lost their lives as well. We are not isolated in our pain. SO many people are hurting and looking for comfort and wanting healing. Only God can truly give it. One reason death is good is that it sobers us. How easy it is to go through life hardly ever having to think of death. I know I had one of the most "cream puff" lives that I've ever seen. Our family had not had much experience at all with death. I even have both sets of grandparents still living, which is probably not extremely common.

Through my mom's death, I think more of eternity. More of God and his sovereignty and his goodness. What a HUGE blessing it was to have my mom for all the years that I did. Some people- LOTS of people- don't have that privilege. She was faithful. Not perfect, but faithful in the things that truly mattered. I can learn so much from her life.

I don't even remember the last time I talked to her. I know it was sometime that week before she died. We talked on the phone nearly every day. When she would call, my cell phone would show up "Mama Risse." Since my dad inherited her cell phone, I changed the name to "Papa Risse." The last time I saw my mom was on Monday, July 5th. We spent that day together shopping and just being together. She and my dad had spent Sunday night with us. Looking back, I'm grateful for the time we had together. I LOVED the time I got to spend with her. always!

I plan on eventually posting some entries on the different lessons my mom has taught me. I want to always honor my dear mother. I hope I honored her in life and I hope to honor her in death. One thing my mom wanted to see in her lifetime was revival. That was not in God's plan for her life. I'm sure what she's experiencing now is more than making up for it!!

I would say to those of you who have a mother living, "don't take her for granted!" But, I want to say: Enjoy your mom. Learn from her. Help her. See how you can be a blessing to her. Call her and talk with her. Send her a note. If she's lost, pray for her salvation. If she's saved, fellowship with her. Pray with her. In reality, we are always taking something/someone for granted. We are human! If we truly realized every single mercy/blessing that we receive, there's no way we could be as thankful as we would need to be. I wanted to take care of my mom when she got older. Boy, did we ever have it planned out. We wanted (want!) both sets of our parents to live with us or very near us when they got older and needed help. With my mom, that won't be necessary. She's getting the absolute BEST care possible. In fact, it's out of this world! :o)

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Kevin and Rikki

Beautiful wedding I was able to "shoot." Will post more later.

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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

4th of July

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My mom and my son

This is the last picture I took of my mom before she met her Saviour. It was in Comanche, TX on the 4th of July at their fireworks display. We had such a sweet time that night. My mom was halfway happy that Biggie (Joseph) was so scared because he held on to her so tightly. What a fitting goodbye picture. Thank you, Lord, for the 30+ years I had being unconditionally loved by such a beautiful, godly woman- my mama.

On the way home from Coleman today, Mikayla asked me if I wanted another mommy. No, I sure don't. I had the best.

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Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Left behind

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My favorite

This is my favorite pic of all the ones taken the day of my mom's funeral. On the left are all my brothers, my brother-in-law and my husband. My mom's body and my dad are in the center. And my dear sister is on the right. sigh. I love my family. The Lord has blessed us tremendously with his great grace and comfort.

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Monday, July 19, 2010

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Friday, July 16, 2010

My mom- my best friend

She is now with her Lord. She entered eternity in the early morning of Friday, July 9th in her sleep. She had told me several weeks before that she didn't want to die alone and God so mercifully saw fit to call her HOME while she slept with her husband by her side. I'm so thankful for that!!! I hope to soon post some pics from her funeral and the family she left behind. I'm so happy for her. Praise the LORD for her life.

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Monday, July 05, 2010

Does life get any better than this??

Our Jadon Michael is almost SEVEN months old. wow! What a delightful little baby he is. He has just started crawling... today! And to think I didn't get to witness it, but my husband, mom and dad did while I was busy making some enchiladas (yum!). He made up for it after supper was over. :o))) I love you, my Jadon!! So thankful to have you for my son!

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Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day, Joseph!

The man you see in this picture means so much to me. I'm terribly grateful for the Lord crossing our paths and eventually bringing us together as husband and wife. He excels as a husband and as a father. He truly is a faithful man, and I have found him!

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Saturday, June 19, 2010

Our children are growing up!

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I'm so in love

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more from the Ledbetter photo shoot

These are my nieces and my nephew from our photo shoot so long ago; trying to get caught up on posting my pics. Love these kiddos!

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Saturday, May 22, 2010

The birthday t-shirts

As you can see, I ordered 4 different colors of t-shirts with "let us run with patience the race that is set before us" Hebrews 12-1. Instead of putting a colon after the 12, they put a dash. oh well. We like them anyway :o)

We celebrated Jody's birthday by spending the morning/afternoon at Lake Brownwood State Park. We hiked a REALLY fun and challenging trail that took us about an hour to complete. My husband loves to be outdoors and we all enjoyed it tremendously. The weather was perfect- a little overcast and windy, which kept us cool. I needed it b/c I carried our 17.5 pound bundle of love the whole time. A great workout! After the hike, we picnicked by the water. Then we came home and napped. My parents brought supper and gave Jody some Nutella (the BEST!) and a red velvet cake for his birthday. So sweet!

All in all, a most pleasant day was had by all. Thank you, Lord, for my loving/godly/faithful/fun/hard-working husband. I would never be able to show my gratitude for the family you have given me. Thank you.

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Friday, May 21, 2010

It's strawberry time!

This is (most of) our group that went to pick strawberries a few days ago. My son Joseph decided he was not interested in being the pic, and by then, I really didn't care too much. We had a fantastic time picking strawberries and taking pics :o) My husband's birthday is not until Sunday, but we celebrated a little early today. I had some t-shirts (with the latter part of Hebrews 12:1 printed on them)made for him. He really liked them! After a trip to Wal-Mart, I made him a strawberry pie. It turned out SO liquidy, as you can tell from the picture. rats! It tasted pretty good anyway. I love love LOVE my husband, and I thank and praise the Lord for him!
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Jadon joins us!

Our son Jadon is now 5 1/2 months old. He finally decided to join us at the table. It's always a fun and momentous time when that happens. Mikayla gave him his first few bites of cereal and, of course, loved it. What a PRECIOUS son Jadon is. The more kids I have, the more I fall in love with them. Being a mommy is wonderful :o)
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