My Testimony

s. murphySharon Murphy

I was born the first time in Bowling Green, KY May 1, 1944. My dad was in the Air Force, so we moved around some. The first place that I remember living is Bermuda where we lived for about 18 months. I have very few memories of my time there because I was so young. I do remember the beautiful blue water and palm trees, some experiences with tree frogs, centipedes and lizards being in the house and waking up with mashed bugs in bed with me (there were no screens on the windows or doors in those days). I also remember having to drink rainwater that was caught in big tanks as it rolled off of the plaster roofs. I also remember having to drink Pet Evaporated Milk because the U.S. government would not sanction the cows on the island. Yuk!

I remember going through two hurricanes while we lived there. That was really scary. The palm trees literally leaned over in the wind and touched the ground. During one the 3” thick plaster ceiling in my bedroom fell on my bed. Praise the Lord, my mother had taken me downstairs to the neighbor’s for the night or I could have been killed.

The one thing that stands out the most in my mind is that I nearly drowned there. I remember what I saw in that experience; it has never left me. My dad tried to talk me out of it, but even though I was very young, I know what I saw and experienced. I remember being for the most part on my back, with the most beautiful, huge gold fish I have ever seen swimming around me. I was moving through the deep water very fast, and I remember breathing under water. I thought to myself, “Daddy said that I cannot breathe under water, but I’m doing it and it doesn’t even hurt!” As I was moving through the water I remember looking up and seeing the surface with a very bright light, like the sun. I also remember hearing the most beautiful music I ever heard before or since, and it kept getting louder and louder as I moved toward the surface and the light.

Then suddenly I was being jerked up out of the water by my dad who had been a lifeguard and he was expelling water out of my lungs (Boy did that hurt!). When I told my dad the above story he insisted that I was on my stomach (as most downing victims are) in only 1 foot of water. I never could convince him of what I saw as being real. What I know now is that I was, in fact, drowning and that I was seeing the lights and hearing the music of heaven, but it was not my time to go. The Lord had work for me here yet!

From Bermuda we moved to Mobile, Alabama. From there we moved to Dover, Delaware. I lived in Dover and later Milford, Delaware until moving to Chattanooga in August of 1974, and other than about 2 years since that time when I lived in Hardinsburg, KY; I have lived in Chattanooga which became my hometown, until I moved to Palmetto, GA in 2006 with my new husband.

I was raised in an alcoholic home (my dad was an alcoholic) which at times became verbally abusive. I was afraid to bring friends home because I never knew when he would be drunk and mean. I was physically beaten with his fists on 3 occasions as a young teenager for such things as forgetting to put the pickles on the table.

His father began sexually molesting me when I was around 9 or10 years old, and this continued for about 3 years. Fortunately, we did not live near them so I only had to go through that about once a year when we either went to visit them or they came to visit us for about a week. As with most sexually abused children I did not tell anyone because I did not want to get into trouble. I thought it was my fault.

My mom tried to take me to church any time that I wanted to go, however, she did not go herself unless I was in a program, because she felt bad going by herself since my dad would not go. The churches that I went to were

Either base chapels or other modernist churches and I can truthfully say that I never heard the gospel in any of them. They were social clubs for the most part. My mom was a Methodist so I was naturally drawn to that denomination. I do not know if she was ever saved or not because she died before I became a Christian.

I loved to go to church and went wherever I was attending at the time every time that the doors opened. I can remember once when I was about 14 having a problem that really upset me. I went to the church and found an open door and I sneaked into the sanctuary that day. I really felt guilty about it, I thought that I was doing something that I shouldn’t be doing and was actually afraid that I would get caught, and have to explain why I was in the church other than service times. I went to the altar, bowed down, and poured my heart out to God asking for His help. Now remember this was a church that did not have altar calls, so I had never been exposed to doing anything like this before. It just came naturally. Also, by the time I married I had read my Bible through 3 – 4 times searching for the truth. I had also read a couple of books about the Bible during that time.

I married when I was 17 years old. We were planning to get married later on, but I became pregnant and that kind of put things in motion a little faster. I was married August 26, 1961.

My mom died in November of 1961 of cancer. She was 41 years old. We tried to live with my alcoholic father to prevent him from having to move on base after mom died, but this turned out to be a big mistake and we had to move out in the middle of the night when I was about 8 months pregnant.

After I married I joined my husband’s church which was a Presbyterian Church. I also taught a 2-3 year old Sunday school class there.

My baby was born with a deformed ear and also turned out to have hydrocephalus (water on the brain), and so we began a lot of trips to specialists and hospitals for various treatments and surgeries. He was a very special child and I learned a lot from him. He was always happy no matter how bad he felt. This situation really caused me to grow up in a hurry.

During that time I worked for about 3 months at a hosiery mill in Milford (to make some money to buy clothes) where I met a lady that talked about being “saved” although she never said what it meant and I was too proud to ask her. (By the way I am still in contact with her and write to her frequently.)

One day my Dr. told me that my little boy was not going to get much better and that he would not live long. He also told me that he felt that I needed to have another baby before anything happened to him. What neither he nor I knew at that time was that I was already pregnant. This time with twins! My twin girls were born when I was 19 years old. My son was then about 20 months old. It’s a good thing that I was a stay at home mom, because I did not have time to do anything else for several months, even housework. My sister-in-law came over and helped me with the housework and laundry.

In November 1964 during a regular check-up of his condition they discovered a 3” blood clot on his brain which required immediate surgery. So, I had to put my son in the hospital 60 miles away from our home. The same day that my son was hospitalized my husband came home from the hospital after having been in a serious Drag Racing accident where his doctor said that he would never walk again. We never told my husband that and the good news in this was that he did in fact walk again and that without any therapy, much to the amazement of his doctor. He had been so sure that he would never walk again that he did not even put walking casts (both of his feet were affected) on him, but 3 weeks later my husband walked into the clinic on his own with the help of crutches. His Dr. scratching his head, ordered walking casts for him.

My son was in the hospital for 3 months and had 2 major brain operations before we got the word that his kidneys had failed and to get there as quick as we could. By the time we arrived he had taken his very first steps and walked into the arms of Jesus! I experienced the sweetest peace, because even though I was lost, I knew where he was and that he was well and happy at last. The girls were 15 months old when my son died in March of 1965, just one month before his 3rd birthday. I was able to deal with his death as a blessing because I knew he was in heaven and much better off. His health and physical size was to the point that my doctor said that I needed to put him in a home for handicapped children.

As a mother, I was having major problems in accepting this. I felt really guilty in not being able to take care of him myself, but the doctor explained that he and my girls were reaching an age that I would end up neglecting him or them if I continued to try to care for him at home. So, we had to make a decision. We had just made arrangements to go and see the home he would be in, when he was hospitalized for the last time. Somehow, even though I was lost I knew that I could give him up in death to the Lord a lot easier than putting him in a home with strangers to take care of him, even though I could have brought him home one weekend a month had he lived.

My second son was born in 1967. He was a normal healthy baby!

The Presbyterian Church hired a new preacher that I found out later (after becoming a Christian), who was a converted Jew. He started doing 3-minute “Dial-a-Sermons” on the telephone from the book of Revelation. I started calling out of curiosity at first. I would call up and listen to the same sermonette over and over scared to death. The church sent him packing as they did not like what he was preaching, but it had done its work in my heart.

New Year’s Eve we went out, as was our practice on New Year’s Eve to a dance at the local armory. During that event I remember suddenly becoming very scared. I thought, “What would Jesus think if He should come back tonight and find me in a place like this? That was the last time we went to a dance.

On January 25, 1969 we went out to look at a house that we were interested in buying. The reason they were selling their house was because they were going to Tennessee Temple Schools to prepare for the ministry.

Since we were religious but lost we prayed on the way that if we were not to buy the house that something would be wrong with it. As it turned out it was a beautiful home, but “ultra modern” in design, and our furniture, etc. was “early attic”. Before we left we were standing in the foyer talking to the couple that owned the home and they asked us if we knew for certain when we died that we would go to heaven. We gave the pat answer that we hoped we would. So they asked if they could show us how we would know for sure. We said yes, and at 5:00 p.m. that day we accepted Jesus Christ as our personal Savior.

As I said earlier we were attending the Presbyterian Church and where we were attending and I was teaching Sunday school. After we were saved we started going on Sunday nights (the Presbyterian Church did not have Sunday night services) to the Baptist Church that the couple that led us to the Lord was attending.

It did not take long for us to realize that we needed to join the Baptist church. Since then the Lord has used me in many areas of service with ladies, the deaf ministry, choirs, singing specials, teaching in Christian Schools, etc.

Mission Trip, Ben Smith

mission 09The following is part of an article my nephew wrote for the Times about a mission trip he went on this spring.

By BEN SMITH
bsmith@newnan.com
On May 31, I and a group of about 23 other recently graduated seniors and chaperones, left First Baptist of Newnan at 6 a.m. bound for Montego Bay, Jamaica.
We had to fly first to Fort Lauderdale to catch a connecting flight to Montego Bay. We arrived at the airport in Montego Bay, Jamaica, at 3:35 p.m. After successfully making it through customs, we left the airport and arrived at our hotel. The hotel where we stayed was made specifically for mission teams. There were two other teams staying there with us.
This resort is located right on the beach on the road Jamaicans like to call the “Hip Strip.” It is called the “Hip Strip” because many Jamaican natives find it oh so exciting to park their car on this road and play their music as loud as their car can handle, and stay there until about 2 in the morning. So we were blessed to have reggae music easing our slumber for the entire week.
On our first full day in Jamaica, June 1, we road about an hour and a half, on the wrong side of the road, to Dunn’s River Falls in Ocho Rios, Jamaica. There we joined hands and climbed up the falls, led by an experienced tour guide.
After about seven or eight minutes, most of us left the chain to finish the journey on our own.We then returned to Montego Bay for some free time on the beach. After free time, we had some authentic Jamaican Jerk chicken. Personally, I have never tasted anything as wonderful Jamaican Jerk chicken. A time of worship, led by Eisa Yamada — guitar, Carlee Avery and Rachel Bryan concluded each day throughout the week.
Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday actually consisted of mission work. We awoke at 6 o’clock, ate breakfast at 7, did our devotions at 7:30, and departed for a school at 8:30.
The first school had about 800 first through sixth graders. At this public school, Eisa, Carlee, and Rachel led the children in a wonderful time of worship. They sang the song “Trading My Sorrows,” and the chorus repeats the words, “Yes, Lord. Yes, Lord. Yes, yes, Lord.” It was really awesome to watch 800 children jump up and down and shout “Yes, Lord,” over and over again. After worship, Sarah Beth Moseley, Mary Beth Edwards, Jared Hendrix and I did a skit about getting “stuck in sin” and how to get “unstuck.”
Every night after dinner, we would have our own time of worship and a debriefing session where we would talk about the events of the day. Each debriefing session brought tears — some of heartbreak over the things that we saw throughout the day, some tears of joy for the blessings that we have here in America, and some tears just because the Spirit moved us. Our lives have been changed by our trip to Jamaica, and our hearts have been burdened by the children of that country.

The picture is from a second missions trip this summer to China.

He Stood Up

Most of my childhood days were not spent at Church in fact we just went to the special days. As a young boy I heard enough on those special days to know I needed to be saved. But in our family “you have plenty of time for that, later” was the way of thinking. Most of us were pretty much left to live how we wanted to as long as we did not bother Daddy.

When and if the subject of Church came up it was in a very general way. That was until one Christmas Eve when my brother Emmett (Everett) stood up. He was a young Christian and a teenager and to stand up at Joe Smith’s house and make an announcement was unheard of. That night he gave a clear and plain plan of salvation and with tears rolling down his face begged his family to be saved. Everyone was speechless. No one that day made any public confessing. But from that day forward we could no longer generalize the subject of salvation. Either you were saved or you were lost.
That was over forty years ago but the effects are still being felt. My brother has been hot and some times cold for the Lord over the years but that day he was on fire. A couple of weeks ago his two children spent almost two weeks in Japan on a Missions Trip.  Ain’t God good. I am very thankful for the boldness and witness that he made to our family that Christmas Eve many years ago. He stood up.
Psalm 107:1 O give thanks unto the LORD, for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever. 2 Let the redeemed of the LORD say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy;

Shoot For The Moon, says of T.K.

For most of us life’s problems seem to control not only thoughts but also our spirit. Many times our goals are determined by pass failures not the future possibilities. I experienced a classic example last week with our granddaughter Tennyson, more affectionately known as T. K., for Tennyson Kyle.
T.k.’s family was on vacation at the beach, Nana was planning on going but was sick. One day the phone rang it was T.K. “Guess what Nana, I flew a kite on the beach today then we went to the Disney Store. There were lots of pretty things there.” “What did you buy?” said Nana. “We just looked, do YOU want to buy me something Nana?” “I will be happy to buy you something, put Mom on the phone so I can tell her.”  Hilary comes to the phone and her and Nana agree to get the girls a dress-up outfit, Ariel the little mermaid and maybe Tinker Bell,
Later that night the phone rings, it is Hilary calling to let us know how much this trip cost Papa. Nana answers the phone, “Well did they find what they were looking for?”
Hilary laughs and says,” Not at first, they were more interested in watching the movies playing in different locations in the store. They were having trouble making up their mind. So finally I asked Tennyson didn’t she see any thing she liked. T.K. said, ”Well those big screen TV’s were nice.” Nana and Hilary just laughed. ”That girl shoots for the moon!”
God has promised to supply ALL our needs according to Hid riches in glory. But it seems we want to limit our request according to our means. Maybe we should “Shoot for the moon.” We have not because we ask not. In Luke 18:16 But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.
We need more of that child like faith, if our Heavenly Father promises us a bowl of soup then don’t come with a tea cup. Stop letting the past rob you of present blessings, shoot for the moon. After all, it was God that put the moon in place.

Forgiveness

Submitted by:  Harriet B. Arrington

“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.  Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.  Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom.  Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord and He will lift you up.”  James 4:8-10

At some point in our lives we have all encountered situations that involve us forgiving someone, or us seeking someone else’s forgiveness for some wrong we have committed.  At no time in my life have I heard the word forgiveness used and practiced more than during my years of employment with the Atlanta Union Mission, Women and Children Services.  The women and children who came through our doors seeking help were addicted to alcohol, drugs and/or victims of domestic violence, or homeless.  For the most part these women were broken in spirit, their lives shattered and were viewed as “real loosers,” in society.  Most of these moms were looking to make a change in their life and for the most part willingly admitted the role they had played in the lifestyle they had lived and which ultimately had led them to this tragic time in their life.  Exact instructions on how to seek forgiveness is found in
James 4:8-10.  The Bible says, this is a time to get serious about life.  It is time to cleanse your hands and a time to purify your heart.  Stop being double-minded, cease laughing and thinking life is one big joke; become sorrowful, mournful and weep unashamedly; apologizing to God and seeking His forgiveness.  Only after this process is complete and we have humbled ourselves in His sight, will He reach down and lift us up.

I don’t think I would be an exaggerating to say, I heard the words “I am sorry” uttered thousands and thousands of times, during the years I worked for the Mission.  Often “I’m sorry” was blurted out to an employee, in an effort to convey the desperation a client might be feeling regarding her personal circumstances and to try and convey her sincere desire to turn her life around.  Some cried out to anyone who would listen as they begged forgiveness for the hundreds of wrong choices they had made in their lives and for the damage those choices had not only brought to them, but to those around them.  To hear mothers and children cry out to God and utter silent and soft prayers of forgiveness was not unusual.  Unfortunately, I have witnessed the birth of a child whose mom chose to continue using drugs during her pregnancy.  It is heartbreaking to watch an innocent baby be born into the world thrashing uncontrollably, exhibiting a distinct high pitch cry and generally under nourished; all of which are common signs of a baby drawing its first breath as a drug addict.  The screams and echos of mothers and children begging each other for forgiveness for sins they had committed against themselves, other family members and God, will forever ring in my ears.  Unless you see some of these things for yourself, I think it might be hard for you to imagine what emotions are involved as a mom apologizes and begs forgiveness from God and from a son she has repeatedly raped, or from a beautiful daughter who at the tender age of 8 or 9, was set up in the business of human trafficking.  The mother was nothing more than an “agent” for her child and used her own flesh and blood as a means of supporting her drug habit.  I have heard young boys and girls weep as they beg mothers to forgive them for their many years of  being decitful, lying, stealing, having abortions and participating in any other type negative behavior you might imagine.  As we begin to search our own heart, we need to remember that our sins are no different from the sins of these mothers and their children.  Sometimes we try to classify sin; but it just doesn’t work that way.  Sin is sin and God says we have all sinned…..”The Lord is not slack concerning  His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that ALL should come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9  This means that everyone has the same opportunity to seek and to be forgiven of their sins and to spend eternity in heaven.  “And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”  Acts 2:21

In their first few days and weeks at the Mission and without even realizing it most of the women and children are not seeking forgiveness; they are simply making an apology.  This is good, for apologizing is a necessary step to take in order to move forward.  However, we need to be aware that while it is fairly easy to apologize; forgiving is an entirely different matter and usually takes a longer amount of time.  Even acts that seem as unforgiveable as those mentioned in the previous paragraph – may be understood within the context of a person’s damaged life or soul.  Hanging on to the memory of past transgressions – whether your own or those of others; allows the poison to grow more potent within you.  Forgiveness is the only way to rid yourself of deep feelings of anger, resentment and guilt.  Resentment, if left untreated will build a wall between you and God.  It will destroy a marriage and sever any relationship you might hope to have with your children, or friends and leave you with feelings of hopelessness and despair.  According to physicians and medical journals, unresolved anger and resentment can contribute to physical ailments that range from heart disease and high blood pressure to digestive problems and depression.  It is easier to resolve feelings of resentment as soon as possible, rather than carrying the anger inside you for months and often years….sometimes forever.  Sadly, it is not usual for people to continue carrying anger and an unforgiving spirit toward someone who has died.  Whether the other person is dead or alive, our first step in forgiving is to understand what happened.  One way to do this, is to write a letter about the behaviors we found unforgivable – we will know exactly what they are because they have continue to haunt us on some level.  This is a letter that will never be mailed.  Rather, it is a way for us to give voice to our emotions and to help move the emotional pain out of our body.  The letter is a tool to help us see past the hurt we feel and to other factors that may have influenced the situation.  Several aspects of human nature may make this hard to do.  One impediment to letting go of anger is the fear of being hurt again – but it is important to push past that fear.  Life is much to short and too full of blessings for us to harbor anger and resentment within our heart.

The second factor at work is more complex.  People sometimes experience a type of power when they don’t fully forgive because it gives them the sense of being in control and in being in a righteous position.  Yet the Bible clearly addresses the seriousness of a person who chooses to assume the role as this righteous person.  Luke 5:32 says, “I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”  Forgiving not only allows us to let go of that power, but it also allows us to accept responsibility for our part in the transgression.  Though this may be the hardest part, it liberates you from the role of victim; a role that may feel comforting at first, but in the long run limits your ability to grow.

True forgiveness is a challenge that demands complete honesty about yourself and/or the other person.  No what how old or how young you are, it is a call to grow up and deal with others on a mature and loving level.  How do you feel today?  Do you feel sick; emotionally, physically and/or spiritually?  Maybe it is time for you to take that important step towards forgiving someone who has treated you wrong, or to ask someone to forgive you for something you have done wrong.

Fun With Kids

Today, I have listed a couple of stories about kids, I hope you enjoy them.

It is empty
A little girl went up to her mother one day while holding her stomach saying, “Mommy, my stomach hurts.” Her mother replied, “That’s because it’s empty, you have to put something into it!”
That night the Evangelist came over for dinner. The Evangelist began to feel bad. Holding his head he said, “I have such a terrible headache!”
The little girl looked up at him giving him the sweetest smile that any little child could give. Then she said,
“That’s because it’s empty, you have to put something into it!”

Boots
The teacher who was helping one of her kindergarten students put on his boots.
He had asked for help and she could see why. With her pulling and him pushing, the boots still didn’t want to go on. When the second boot was on, she had worked up a sweat. She almost whimpered when the little boy said, “Teacher, they’re on the wrong feet.” She looked and sure enough, they were.
It wasn’t any easier pulling the boots off than it was putting them on. She managed to keep her cool as together they worked to get the boots back on, this time on the right feet. He then announced, “These aren’t my boots.”
She bit her tongue and nicely said, “Why didn’t you say so?”
Once again she struggled to help him pull the ill-fitting boots off. He then said, “They’re my brother’s boots. My Mom made me wear them.”
She didn’t know if she should laugh or cry. She mustered up the grace and courage she had left to wrestle the boots on his feet again. She said, “Now, where are your mittens?”
He said, “I stuffed them in the toes of my boots…”

Young Hearts

Today, I got to spend some time with the grandkids it was a good day. Eli wanted to help me put together his little toy shelf. He would hold the pieces, while I put the screws in them, remember he is sixteen months. Maybe I am just a proud Papa. And of course T.K. and Morlie was as cute as can be. When you get all three together it does not take long to see that there is a big different between boys and girls.
Eli would run into the door frame, fall over the toys, bump his head and just keep going. The girls would just slightly bump into anything then they would cry for a few minutes and want a hug and kiss, mostly from Nana.
Not only are boys and girls different all of a poured from our own mold. We are shaped by the people that raise us and teach us. While I believe the Bible clearly teaches that the boys are the stronger of the sexes, we must help the boys to be more aware of being a little tender and the girls a little tuffer.
1 Peter 3: 7 Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.
Jude 1:22 22And of some have compassion, making a difference:
I am almost reminded of a song about our impact of the life of people.

I took a piece of plastic clay
And idly fashioned it one day-
And as my fingers pressed it, still
It moved and yielded to my will.

I came again when days were past
The bit of clay was hard at last.
The form I gave it, still it bore,
And I could change that form no more!

I took a piece of living clay,
And gently fashioned it day by day,
And molded with my power and art
A young child’s soft and yielding heart.

I came again when years were gone:
It was a man I looked upon.
He still that early impress bore,
And I could fashion it never more.

White As Snow

Let it snow! Sunday morning we had a rare privilege of snow here in Palmetto, Georgia. And because most of us Southerners do not drive in ice very well, we did not have an evening service, another rare event. Most of us older kids enjoyed the beauty and tossed a few friendly snowballs. I am sure that the real young people made snowmen and did some sliding down even the smallest hill.
As we drove home even normally unkempt yards were beautifully covered with a clean blanket of pure white snow. In our yard the mounts of wood chips, from recently removed trees, looked like mini ski slopes. I was reminded of how our live before Christ was filled with all kinds of junk but now we are covered with the precious blood of Jesus. The rare snow here in Palmetto is just a reminder of  the change in our lives after we are saved.

Psalm 51:7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
Isaiah 1:18 Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

Hold Me On Your Chest

Today I had a chance to have lunch with the grand kids. After we finished eating, Morlie my three year old granddaugther turned to me and said, “Hold me Papa.” I was glad to. I put her on my lap then she said, “How me on your chest.” She was wanting me to hold her so she could put her head on my shoulder.

I got thinking of how God wants us to rest on His shoulder and He will hold us as we go through the troubles of life.

When we wander from Him.

Luke 15:4 What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it?5 And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing. 6 And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost.

When we are afraid.

John13:22 Then the disciples looked one on another, doubting of whom he spake.  23 Now there was leaning on Jesus’ bosom one of his disciples, whom Jesus loved.

If we will only have the faith of little children in times of trouble, then we will learn the comfort of Him holding us and our head on His shoulder.

Good Morning by Arlene

I have been babysitting for Eli a few days. Preacher has been in Columbus helping Alan paint & put in a new hot water heater in there new house. Baby Eli is so sweet. I have very much enjoyed spending time with him. He has the SWEETEST way of saying NANA …. He will repeat everything U say now. I had the door opened & said Oreo likes to lay in the sunshine, he said sunshine. I was drinking my coffee, I said baby Eli can not have coffee & it is hot, he then said coffee. This is when U have to REALLY watch what U say around little ones.

As I was typing this I thought about how we as Christians we have to watch what we say & do around unsaved loved ones.  We should want to say & do things that they would want to repeat. Like how to serve a might GOD. God has been so good to us & the family we have here in Palmetto has been such a blessing. The church family has went far above the call of duty for us. We have a new cover on our back deck (that we hope to get screened in this spring) it is going to be so nice to be able to have gatherings here & open the french doors for more space & a new roof to make the house look so nice. We are going to have the messy pine straw gone as soon as the trees are down in the front.

I will be leaving soon to go to Columbus to take Eli home & then to Moreland’s B/day party. She turned 3 yesterday. My how time goes by. We have 3 beautiful grandchildren. There parents are doing such a great job teaching them about Jesus & the things we should do to please HIM.

Thanks to all of U, for the blessing U have been to our family. We Love each one in a very special way.

Arlene Smith