Thursday, January 14, 2010

Day 4 Ups and Downs

I know that there will be many days like today. First, I’m beginning to get caught up on my sleep. Last night I went to bed after washing the tablecloth, and for about 5 minutes had a hard time. I was just thinking of Julia and how much I missed her. I had to dial down and seek the presence of God. Once I concentrated on His presence and begin just trying to connect with Him, I began to be better. I wasn’t really praying, just resting in His arms. You can do that you know. Intimacy with the Godhead is not just all about reading the Bible and praying. Sure, that’s important, but intimacy is also about just resting, soaking in His presence. You have to let Him meet you where you are, and then let Him take you where He is. To be able to meet Him you have to release fear and anxiety. You also have to all slow your mind down. Sometimes thinking about all the problems and possible solutions keep you from the real solution, Him. Anyway, I slept 9 hours and felt refreshed.

It must be hard being a 3 year old, especially when a new baby comes on the scene. My 3-year-old granddaughter has been adjusting (or not) to the new baby today. I’ve heard that this can be hard, and it definitely seems to be taking its toll on Mom and both the kids. Well, I was trying to distract my granddaughter by watching pictures on my computer. She loves to do this, especially if they are of her. As I was looking at all the pictures I kept seeing Julia. Seeing her smile, and bright blue eyes. She always made great pictures and I found myself laughing and crying at the same time as my 3 yr old granddaughter and I spent almost an hour watching pictures. I was really getting sad, but then we started playing in the basement and I took her to swing and all of a sudden I was happy again. That’s pretty much how the day has been, a day of ups and downs. But it did bring back some old memories:

I remember after we were first married. My first assignment out of Pilot training was Hickam AFB in Honolulu, Hawaii. I was going to fly C130’s in Search and Rescue. I was excited, and I think Julia was but she had never been out of the state of Georgia. She had gone to a small girls school, Tift College, in Forsyth GA. She had lived at home after college when she started teaching. So here we were after 3 dates married and on our honeymoon. You have to understand, I had been in Pilot training for a year. It was very stressful and competitive. I didn’t have time to plan a honeymoon. I sort fo figured it would just work out. WRONG! My plan was to spend the first night at the Regency Hyatt in Atlanta. In 1971 it was the hotel to stay in. Then we were going to drive down to Jeckle Island and spend a week at the beach, relaxing and enjoying each other. I only made one mistake. I forgot to get reservations at the beach. I didn’t know that there were 3 conventions going on that week. There wasn’t a hotel room to be had on the island. Strike one! We spent the night at the Holiday Inn in Brunswick GA. Julia was so gentle and kind, even though I knew she was probably mad at me. Well I thought we would stop at Amelia Island. Nope, all full (after all it was early July). Well we finally found a place across the street from the beach in Daytona Beach. We had a good time that week, in spite of my lack of planning. I guess that was Julia’s first introduction to my spontaneity, or as she would say, ”my lack of planning”. There would be more times over the next 38 years, but never as memorable.

So I feel much better now. I’m setting here watching Homeward Bound with my Daughter Lisa and the kids and her friend Lisadawn. I have learned today that there are going to be ups and downs. But I know that if I keep my eyes on the things that are important, and my heart turned to God and his presence that I can overcome the downs and enjoy the ups.


  1. Tom: I liked what you said about the Presence of God. About not having to always be praying or reading. True, those things are good and necessary, but just BEING with God is also needed. Thanks for verbalizing and affirming that. Bless you --- stk

  2. You have to let Him meet you where you are, and then let Him take you where He is. ---Thanks Tom

  3. It sounds like you are rolling with the ups and downs. I love the sweet story of you and your grand daughter looking at pictures and seeing Julia. WOW. I am so grateful that you are doing this blog. I am learning from your openness and your stories. THANK YOU! The account of not being able to fall asleep and then strengthening yourself in the Lord...... that was just such a clear explanation of "how to" rest in His presence. I loved that. Once again Thank You for sharing. We will continue to follow...
    ><> ann

  4. I was so blessed reading this. One of the hallmarks I look for in mature leadership is the ability to make oneself transparent and vulnerable to others. Thanks for sharing your heart and memories. I am drawn closer to the Father's heart.


  5. We are all learning from this blog as we all have ups and downs and often no sense of "normal". While you are on a different journey, your spiritual insights are benefiting us. Thank you, Tom, for always being a leader... even when you don't feel like it.