And all things you ask in prayer, believing, you shall receive.
Thought for the Day: Memories
“Donna, did you and Mark find your anniversary gift”, Mama said as she lay very sick with ovarian cancer in her hospital bed. “No, Mama, I don’t know what you are talking about.” I replied. “It’s in the guest room closet”, she continued. As this was one of only a few conversations Mama was able to have in the time of her sickness, we knew it was very important. Later, we drove to Mama’s house and found a beautifully wrapped gift in the corner of her guest bedroom closet. As we opened the gift, we both teared up because it was obviously planned. Six months before, my Mama had surprised us by driving to our house with the beginning buildings for a Dicken’s Village. One by one Mama sent Daddy to the car to bring in another group of buildings from the car. By the time the gift giving stopped, she had given us ten buildings. We set up our first Dickens’s Village in our house with those pieces. So, back to the anniversary gift. When we opened the gift we saw that she had given us the Dicken’s Village “Kinsington Palace”. I cried as I realized that Mama had given us a special gift that she would probably never get to see in our village.
This week, we worked hard to put up our Dicken’s Village for the first time in about four years. As we moved a few years ago, setting up in a new place was questionable and I wasn’t sure where we were going to put it. My husband and I continued our collection of Dicken’s Village pieces until we had over 50 buildings and who know how many accessories. We pulled out the boxes of houses from the basement with my son’s help. As he brought them up, I carefully took each building out of its box and took pictures of each piece where I could remember exactly what I had. He told me, “Mama, we are missing boxes 3, 4, and 5.” I was a bit nervous when he told me that, but I continued opening the pieces. Later, I realized why I was nervous, my Kinsington Palace was missing. We went downstairs and continued looking for the missing boxes, but we couldn’t find them. As I glanced around in another section of the basement, I spotted boxes 3 and 5 and excitedly pulled them out. I tore into the boxes, but once again was disappointed…no Kinsington Palace. We continued the search, but still couldn’t find the missing box. I realized that I was becoming overly sad because I couldn’t find Mama’s anniversary surprise. Later, I decided to go downstairs one more time. As my husband was in the basement working, he overheard me say, “Mama, I would be so excited if you could lead me to Kinsington Palace. God, please help me find that box.” Seconds later, I looked in a pile of boxes that were in totally a different place. And, there it was, one misplaced box that had written on the top, “Box 4 of 10”. Thanks, Mama, for bringing me special memories of you as you started me on this Dicken’s Village adventure. Not being able to find Mama’s gift made this year’s Dicken’s village in the“finding of the gift” again even more special. We once again found “Mama’s surprise”.
The Dicken’s Village adventure continued as most of the lights did not work after being in storage for those years. My sweet husband and son worked tirelessly to check the cords and to go in search of new bulbs. By the time our day, and evening, ended we had the Dicken’s Village completed with all the lights in place. So, this year’s Dicken’s Village is more special than ever because my Mama, my husband and sons, and God all took part in making it happen.
Wow, that was special. How excited I was when I found my Kinsington Palace! In this moment, I am amazed at how quickly I found the missing box almost immediately after I prayed for it to be found. Why did I wait? Why did I put off asking God for what I needed? Aren’t we all like that? Last week, I received a beautiful message from a dear friend asking me “How do I improve on my prayer life with God?” Well, obviously I am not so great at it. But eventually I remember and I pray. And, when I pray I feel better in whatever circumstance I am going through. Thank you, God, for answering my prayer….I’m not sure my Mama didn’t give me the nudge to pray. I wonder…!
Prayer: Precious God! Thank you for memories and thank you for reminding us to pray in special ways. Today I am thankful for surprises that come through prayer. Amen.