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Bless Your Heart by Cindy Colley

Forgive Me…

My friend, Susan Cooper, showed me this poem that popped up on her “memories” today. I think I wrote this to Hannah and put it in her first college planner when she left for the very first time to go to FHU. Maybe you need this today as you are sending yours back for this spring semester. If you get to hold yours closer for a little while longer, cherish every moment. I love all of you diligent, hope-filled mothers who read. Keep praying for all of our babies, no matter whether they are in the womb, the bedroom down the hall, the dorm, or far away raising their own babies. Our kids have two fathers, but only one mother! You are not dispensable! Stay close to both of their fathers, if you can!
A poem by Cindy Colley…but so appropriate for any mother. Cindy I hope you don’t mind I posted this from your blog. Just had to share.
Forgive Me
(or “Goodbye to (your child’s name”)
Forgive me if I’m just a little bit sad.
I really shouldn’t be.
This is what we raised you for.
Today we set you free.
Forgive me when I shed a tear
As I walk out that door.
Tearful prayers have brought you here,
So I may cry once more.
Forgive me if I worry
When I crawl in bed at night.
Forgive the calls and emails
Just to make sure you’re alright.
If you ever want to phone me
Even if it’s late at night;
Or if you need a place to come
Where we’ve left on the light…
If you need my arms, a home-cooked meal,
Or a weekend shopping buddy,
A proofreader, dress mender, washer or maid
Or just a quiet place to study…
Home is open…even on Sundays.
We do laundry, ironing and meals.
We still change oil and gas up your car.
We’ll wash it and balance your wheels.
It’s amazing how we spent the past 7000 nights
Trying to get you quiet and in bed.
And now that your bedroom is silent and dark.
We wish it was noisy instead.
Funny how we tired of that telephone ringing.
You constantly tied up our line.
But, honey, if you need to tie it up now.
I think it will probably be fine
So don’t hesitate if you need us.
We’re available 24/7.
And telling our story and your bedtime prayer
Is still closest in this life to heaven.
Bless Your Heart by Cindy Colley

Sister to Sister: I’m all out of “Nice”.

nice-cup-of-tea-and-a-biscuits_M156zYu__LI was in a coffee shop the other day, trying to get some work done while waiting for my husband, when a group of thirty-something and forty-something women came in. They congregated and visited near my table. I wasn’t getting much work done, but they were loud, so I got a lot of eavesdropping done. I overheard one of them say this:
“So I’m just about done. I mean yesterday was the worst day at work and I was SO nice to customers all day. ‘How can I help you?’…’I’m so sorry you’re having difficulty.’…’Here, let me help you with that.’… I mean, by the time I got home, I was all out of ‘nice’. My husband started in about one of his little issues and I just said ‘You better just go to bed because I am fresh out of nice. My nice is just all used up.'”
I hope we never run out of nice, as God’s women. This woman’s perspective surely was not a holy one born of a meek and quiet spirit (I Peter 3:1-5).  Her spirit, rather, was one completely divorced from and opposite of kind and long-suffering toward her husband. She really had used up her nice in a context of earning a paycheck and, at the end of the long hard day, she had nothing left for the one who should be the most important person in her world.
I hope we are different as Christians. As God’s woman, I should see my home as my first responsibility; the place that gets the very best of me–not the leftovers. I want my husband to get the best of my nice–not merely because he could demand it, but simply because he’s my husband and I love him (Titus 2:3-5) and because my God has demanded that of me. Even should my husband be having a bad day or, as is the case with some sweet sisters I know who are married to non-believers, even if he’s having a bad life, my commitment is to God to give my husband my respect (Ephesians 5:33).
Where is your nice going when you really think about it?  Maybe you have enough nice to go around. But if you are using it up outside of your house and life with your husband and/or children is suffering as a result, priorities need to be rearranged and adjustments made. This woman at the coffee shop was truly very nice to her friends as she sipped her latte . She had time for them. One or two of them asked her questions and she responded with a smile. It made me wonder if she was going to use it all up again that day before she got home to the one that God has made to be her head (Ephesians 5:23), the one she is to be loving with phileo–friendship love (Titus 2:3-5).
 Surely the hearts of His daughters are refillable. Nice is a commodity that we restore over and over again when we continue to bear the fruit of the Spirit. Love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness and goodness is the natural harvest of a life lived in Jesus (Galatians 5:23)…a life transformed by the Word and from  the world by a renewed mind (Romans 12:2). But if you constantly find yourself struggling to be nice where it consequentially matters most, then contemplate and eliminate, reflect and deflect, consider life carefully and change it prayerfully, trust and adjust. Get your nice on!
A woman can tear down her house with her own hands (Proverbs 14:1). Maybe some of us are building relationships at the coffee shop, the office and even in the church building, while destroying the most important one. If that’s you, let me encourage you to stop right where you are and vow to do whatever it takes to bring nice home to your most important earthly relationship.