Thursday, June 14, 2007


Our loss is Heaven's gain. Though saddened by the death of Ruth Graham, wife of evangelist Billy Graham, I realize she's in a better place. Last I'd heard she slipped into a coma and passed away sometime later.

I found out about her death on someone's post on This person also mentioned in her blog about how Ruth had a tough time when Billy would be gone so much, traveling and ministering. She often stayed home with the children and times were sometimes hard for her. But she kept an open Bible in nearly every room in her home and when she'd have a moment to slip away from the children, she'd immerse herself, if even for a few seconds, in God's word.

This got me thinking about my own life and how, ever since I got married and started a family, it's been so hard to maintain the quantity of time alone with God and His word that I had when single. I'm glad for Ruth's legacy. She probably has no idea...or maybe she does much impact her struggle and creative solution to fulfilling her hunger for God's word would have on my generation.

If you're a busy mom who longs for Bible time, maybe print out scripture cards and leave them everywhere in your house. I do. Some people don't have a Bible for every room, so that would be an alternative for quiet moments to drink of Him and His promises. If I did it more, I'll bet I'd be a better, more patient mother for it. LOL! I just want my heart to return to the place where it lives and breathes for God and God alone. I love my family and friends, but God is everything to me. I know He's always with me, but because of life concerns my heart is not always with Him. But I do know that even giving one of my children a drink of water pleases Him. I'm called to be a mother, I'm called to my children.

I talked to a friend today whose grandmother fell (on a medical scooter) down some stairs. A horrible accident in which the scooter then landed on her after her head hit the door at the bottom. I pray for Nana, and hope she lives. My friend was talking about how she wished she would have taken her children to see Nana more. This struck a huge chord with me because I had a friend who recently buried her 12 year old daughter. She said her only regret was having had her daughter sedated during a two hour transfer from one hospital to another.

Two hours of regret. And my friends says she'd give anything to have those two hours back with Emily.

Man, I've volunteered for so much this year that I realized at Em's funeral that I'd have about a year of regret if something happened to one of my children. The thing is, I prayed about what to take on and I said no to a lot. I think people think because I left my nursing job to stay home with my children (did you hear that? TO STAY HOME WITH MY CHILDREN!) that I have all the time in the world to help them. I also know God has called me to write.

One of my deepest prayers for this life has always been that when I stand before God on the other side of it, that I wouldn't have one single, solitary regret. My heart yearns to do only what God has planned for me in this life, in every minute.

So next year, I'm pulling out of all volunteering. Don't ask me, don't even think about asking me because my answer will be no.

My children have felt neglected and my writing has suffered. And most certainly my time with God has. Sister author Debra Clopton's testimony branded in my mind the importance of obeying when God calls us away from something.

So if you noticed I've pulled away from a lot of online groups, you'll know why. It's out of obedience. God knows what is ahead and while I do not live my life in fear but in faith, if I end up with regrets, it's no one's fault but my own.

Okay, rambling post over. This is a head's up. Whatever it is you need...ask someone else. I've served my time. LOL! Honestly, I felt honored and grateful to give back to the writing community. Next year, I'm going to streamline even more and not volunteering for anything unless God boots my caboose into it. So unless you're God....don't ask me to volunteer for nuttin' honeys. I luvs ya but my house is cluttered and my commas are tripping all over themselves. I gotta refocus, declutter, simply, obey.



Condolences to the Graham family.



Shauna said...

Beautiful post, Cheryl! It spoke to my heart. I have a hard time saying no. I know God has called me to be a stay-at-home mom; I know He's called me lead worship in our church. Other than that *shrug* But it seems I take on a lot. I babysit for lots of people randomly. Nothing committed, but spur-of-the-moment. My weeks pile up and I'm left wondering how I managed to get myself into situations. And it's no one's fault by my own.

Thanks for the reminder that I'm only responsible for what God calls me to. The rest? He has someone else in mind.

Sara Horn said...

Great post, Cheryl. I too have struggled with the "working from home so I can have more time with my child" and then not having any time with my child because I'm working so much! I've also recently decided to cut back on what I say yes to. Good to hear your thoughts. There is strength in numbers, friend! :)

Hope Chastain said...

I'm with you, Squirly! Even being at home, sometimes hours slip by without our noticing. It's so hard not to be able to say "yes" to every single good thing that comes our way, but we have to let the Lord lead us about the way He wants us to serve Him, and He knows the best way! I'm glad you won't be letting people "guilt" you into volunteering. There are plenty of people out there with more time on their hands than you have, and you have those precious kids and husband that need you, plus your writing for God.

May God bless you as you continue to serve Him!

Hugs, Hope