Sunday, August 31, 2014


The patio is complete and all but a little yard work is left before I am finished with this neverending house/yard project.
Right before Kris left I had one last favor to ask him.  I wanted a small area in the corner of my backyard to be a private, quite and very special space.  I showed Kris a basket full of rocks that I have kept near our door since November 2008. Each stone has a scripture written on it’s surface and each one is a unique and precious gift to me.
It was Fall 1995, when I joined a very special group of women who I have become my body of Christ. The group has changed and morphed over these nineteen years.  Some of our members have moved, some sadly passed away. New members came as old members left, but I continue to feel a very strong connection to women who have been and still are a part of this group.  
This is a group of spirit-filled, Godly women who have celebrated, laughed, cried, prayed and supported one another through every experience life could imagine. These of women have been responsible for creating a sweet ministry that has blessed untold numbers of people, and I have thankfully been not only a part of this group, but also the recipient of their loving kindness.  
One day soon after we learned of Steve’s tumor, I found a rock on our front door step with a Bible verse written on it’s surface. The next day there was another one with a different scripture offering promises of God and hope for the future. Each day we would find a new rock with a new verse that spoke of God’s care for us in times of trouble. These rocks were quietly and anonymously placed on our doorstep as a reminder that we were loved and that we were being prayed for ceaselessly. 
I’m not sure how many weeks the rocks were left, but I know we became highly aware of the love that surrounded us.  This was our body of Christ when we needed him the most, and this body saw us through some of the roughest times of our life.  
The women of The Views Bible Study will always hold a special place in my heart as they stood by my side through all our concerns about Harper, they were there for me during the days after Steve’s death.  It was this body of Christ that brought food, arranged the lunch at the church after Steve’s memorial service, and continues to call and to write me notes of care and concern.
In time, I moved our scripture rocks from the front door to the back and once I moved to this house they came along with me. 
As Kris was finishing up the patio I told him the story behind the rocks and asked if he could create a small space in a corner of the backyard where they could have a permanent home.  
Kris smiled kindly and we began planning this spot.  Early one morning before the concrete was poured, I took some of Steve’s ashes and sprinkled them into the earth that was waiting for the foundation.  It was a private, prayerful time as I pressed Steve’s ashes into the soil and thanked God for a life that was so much a part of mine. Steve will always be with me in this place and I am thankful for this little corner of my world.
Flagstone was laid and each scripture rock was carefully embedded around its perimeter.  The border is uneven, imperfect and wonderful, as each rock is so different.  Now our family will always have a place that has been dedicated in special remembrance to their father, grandfather, brother, son and my husband.

There is a scripture that lies at the cornerstone of this small area.  I found a beautiful rock and wrote these words from Joshua 4: 6-7 “We will use these stones to build a memorial.  In the future, your children will ask, “what do these stones mean?” Then you can tell them.”

Years ago, after the last stone had been delivered to our doorstep, I copied the verses from each rock.  I placed them in an order, that when read, served as a beautiful prayer.  I share this prayer with the women of The Views and I share them with you now. I hope that if ever you need to encourage or support someone going through a difficult time, you might remember these scriptures. They would be a gift and a balm to all who receive them.
For what is worth,

 “Trust in the Lord forever, for in God the Lord, we have an everlasting Rock.” Isaiah 26:4"The Lord is near to all who call upon Him.”  Psalm 145:18   “In the beginning was the WORD.”  John 1:1 “When I am afraid I will trust in You.”  Psalm 56:3 “God is our refuge and strength, an ever present help in trouble.”  Psalm 46:1 “In the day when I cried thou answered me, and strengthened me with strength in my soul.”  Psalm 138: 3  “To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul, in you I trust, O my God.”  Psalm 25:1-2 “You have seen me tossing and turning through the night.  You have collected all my tears and preserved them in your bottle!  You recorded every one in your book.”  Psalm 56:8 “I will lift up my eyes to the hills from whence cometh my help.  My help cometh from the Lord which made heaven and earth.  He will not suffer thy foot to be moved.  He that keepeth thee will not slumber.”  Psalm 121:1-3 “He reached down from on high and took hold of me; He drew me out of deep waters.”  Psalm 18:16 “Lead me to the Rock that is higher than I.”  Psalm 61:2 “I will be with you…and the rivers shall not overflow you.  For I am the Lord, thy God, the Holy One.”  Isaiah 43:2-3 “Every time I am in trouble, I call on you, confident that you will answer.”  Psalm 86:7 “Answer me when I call you, oh my righteous God.   Give me relief from my distress.”  Psalm 4:1 “Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not be faint.”  Isaiah 40:31 “Let us run with patience the particular race that God has set before us.”   Hebrews 12:1 “Come to me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.” Malachi 4:2 “But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings.”  Matthew 11:28 “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him.”  1Corinthians 2:9 “In me you may have peace.  In the world you will have tribulations but, be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”  John 16:33 “The Lord will fight for you; you need only be still.”  Exodus 14:14 “Be still and KNOW that I AM GOD.”  Psalm 46:10 “I will not leave you comfortless.  I will come to you.”  John 14:18 “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.”  John 14:27 “May the Lord watch over you and give you peace.”  Numbers 6:26 “Sing to the Lord with Thanksgiving.”  Psalm 147:7 “May your unfailing love rest upon us, O Lord, even as we put our hope in you.”   Psalm 33:22