Handling the Ache of Empty Arms

Don’t you love how we can express ourselves in different ways? For some, their chosen avenue is music. For others, it is art. Still others find their creative outlet in photography or cooking or knitting. The list goes on and on.

We writers use words to share our hearts with the world. But even within that world of words, we can choose different forms of expression. And you know what I’ve discovered? Sometimes a poem says it best. I pray that this one blesses you.

Empty Arms

No one warned her it was coming,
the lost feeling that hovered
when the caregiving stopped.
But a friend brought clarity
with two simple words—
Empty arms.

A different time, a different place,
he never dreamed how deep the void,
never knew what lost really meant
until heaven claimed his love,
until she no longer stood by his side.
Empty arms.

Across the way, a young couple grieved,
brokenhearted and alone.
The cherished dream would never be theirs,
A child of their own they’d never see,
a primal yearning withheld.
Empty arms.

A hurried goodbye on a college campus
and then tears the entire drive home.
Her daughter’s room so empty
yet bearing her mark,
the pain of letting go pours in.
Empty arms.

What can we do when such times come
how do we handle the ache?
Let’s turn to the One ever ready to help,
hand him each hurt until nothing remains
but the welcome relief of
Empty arms.

“Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken.” Psalm 55:22 NIV

*How has God helped you handle an empty arms situation in your life?

*The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter with a giveaway in every regularly scheduled issue, will come out in early August. Sign-up is FREE. *Temporary problem with Life Notes sign-up. To sign up, just contact me.

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride check out my Books/My Work page.

*Flickr photo by whatmegsaid, Creative Commons License

Creamy Addition to Your Wedding Dessert Bar

Mother of the Bride, have your daughter and her groom-to-be decided to have a dessert bar at their wedding reception? If so, I bet the ideas are flying concerning exactly what to include. May I throw another idea into the mix?

A creamy pudding or mousse could provide a light and delicious dessert option for your wedding guests. Chocolate (pictured above) would be sure to be a hit, but lots of other flavors would be great possibilities too. Your daughter might even be able to match the flavor to one of the colors of her wedding—for instance, strawberry, lemon, or pistachio.

Serving the creamy dessert in a martini or champagne glass (as in photo above) looks elegant and fun at the same time. Add a ribbon in one of the colors of the wedding and you’re good to go. Not only will this pudding/mousse martini-idea make a beautiful display at the reception, but your guests will enjoy savoring a comfort food all dolled up for the wedding festivities.

Why not share this yummy and fun dessert idea with your daughter, MOB? Your guests will be glad you did!

*You might also like to read Wedding Cake Pops Equal Fun!

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride check out my Books/My Work page.

*The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter with a giveaway in every regularly scheduled issue, will come out in early August. Sign-up is FREE. *Temporary problem with Life Notes sign-up. To sign up, just contact me.

*Flickr photo by FurumaruCreative Commons License

Healed by God’s Word

“He sent out his word and healed them; he rescued them from the grave.” Psalm 107:20 NIV

Our celebration of Easter each spring reminds us that Jesus “was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.” (Isaiah 53:5 NIV) Praise God for the healing that comes from his wounds! For the price he paid for our sins.

But not only are we healed by his wounds, the verse above from Psalm 107 points out that we are healed by his word as well. When the pain is great, when defeat looms large, when confusion rules, our precious Father sends his word to heal us and to minister to us.

He’s done if for me time and again when my need has been great. He’s sent the healing touch of his word in a variety of ways—everything from my daily Bible reading to a scripture I see posted on social media or to reassurance he whispers to my spirit. The avenue can vary but his word stands the same. And his word heals.

Praise God for the healing that comes from his word!

“When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name LORD God Almighty.” Jeremiah 15:16 NIV

*How has God sent his healing word to you?

*The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter with a giveaway in every regularly scheduled issue, will come out in early August. Sign-up is FREE. *Temporary problem with Life Notes sign-up. To sign up, just contact me.

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride check out my Books/My Work page.

*My photo

Fun Nail Polish Gift from the Bride to Her Maids

Mother of the Bride, at some point in the days or weeks preceding the wedding, here’s a fun gift idea for the bride to give her bridesmaids—nail polish! And not just any nail polish, but nail polish in the color of their dresses or bouquets. Fun and pretty, too, huh?

Not only will your daughter’s maids appreciate this special treat, but it will help their overall wedding day look come together as well. Variety can look fun and festive on the big day, but uniformity has a special beauty too.

And just think of the great photos that might result if their nails are all done in the same color. The photographer could actually take a few shots with their hands in mind. Pretty shots with their bouquets, pops of the same color as they help the bride get into her gown, and even a shot specifically showing off their hands. And if they use the polish on their toes as well, you’ve got more cute photo possibilities ahead!

You or the bride might even want to take the gift of nail polish a step further and surprise the bridesmaids with a professional manicure and have them take their polish to the salon (would probably be a good idea to have purchased the polish there.) This extra treat is entirely optional, of course, but it could be a fun outing for all the girls—bride included—a couple of days before the wedding.

Worth suggesting to the bride, MOB? I think so! And why not get your nails done at the same time? Go ahead—have some fun and treat yourself!

*You might also like to read Bridesmaids’ Manicure: Polka Dots and More.

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride check out my Books/My Work page.

*The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter with a giveaway in every regularly scheduled issue, will come out in early August. Sign-up is FREE. *Temporary problem with Life Notes sign-up. To sign up, just contact me.

*Flickr photo by Upupa4meCreative Commons License

God Hasn’t Forgotten You

Long term trials have a way of wearing us down—in more ways than one. Whether it’s ongoing illness, unemployment, marital problems, teenage rebellion, or any number of other anguish inducing situations, we soon grow weary physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. We eventually wonder if God has forgotten us, don’t we?

If today you feel that God doesn’t hear your cries anymore or that he doesn’t care about you, remember that he loves you so much he sent his only Son to be your Savior. Take heart with these words of encouragement from my poem “Trust in Him”

“And when you finally feel
Like God has forgotten you,
He’ll show you he hasn’t—
Trust in him.”

Father, show the weary and hurting your love!

“I will not forget you. See, I have inscribed you on the palms of my hands.” Isaiah 49:15 NRSV

*How has God shown you his love in the midst of a long-term trial?

*The current issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter with a giveaway in every regularly scheduled issue, came out earlier this month. It’s not too late to receive it. Sign-up is FREE. *Temporary problem with Life Notes sign-up. To sign up, just contact me.

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride and also my Wedding Inspiration cards, check out my Books/My Work page.

*Photo by Evie S. on Unsplash