After having shared our home with us for almost 9 years, my parents are moving. They are sorting and packing, deciding what to keep, what to give away, and what to take to the Goodwill. Yet there is the inevitable collection of treasured items from 65 years of marriage and almost 90/85 years of life that they will not have room for. We live in a big, old farm house and they had use of several rooms besides “their” bedroom, sitting room, bathroom and guest room, so down-sizing is a challenge.
My parents have generously offered many lovely and interesting treasures to my brothers and myself. We are now at the point of needing to downsize ourselves, so accepting some items has been a challange. To be totally upfront, many of their things are nicer than ours so accepting has NOT been a chore.
We all have “things” we keep that have emotional attachments or special meaning that no one else may share. Phil and I once agreed that we had way too many books and we needed to get rid of some. So, we agreed that we would each go through our book shelves and pull out books we no longer wanted to keep.
That did NOT work! All the books I no longer wanted to keep were significant to Phil, why I don’t know. The books he wanted to donate were books I treasured – he shouldhave known! So the result is that all those books are in our attic.
As my parents have passed on to us treasures from their past, it has caused me to think about gifts we give and receive. We sometimes think a loved one will treasure the same things we do because we think they understand how much those things mean to us.
It reminded me that God has given each of us gifts as HIS children.
Do I treasure those gifts as much as I should?
1 Peter 4:10-11 (NLT)
10 God has given each of you a gift from his great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another. 11 Do you have the gift of speaking? Then speak as though God himself were speaking through you. Do you have the gift of helping others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies. Then everything you do will bring glory to God through Jesus Christ. All glory and power to him forever and ever! Amen.
These verses clearly state that God has given EACH of us gifts. It is vitally important in our lives as His children to not only receive those gifts, but to use them for His glory.
I plan to use the hand crocheted bedspread my mother just gave me. Not only will it remind me of her, but it will also remind me on the hours of love and care that it took to make the bedspread.
Each gift from our heavenly Father should remind us of His love and care for us.
May we use each gift He has given us for His glory!
What a lovely photo and article Gayle. Hope they are moving to a place they will love as much.
Thank you, Marsha. The photo was taken at Mingus Mill the week before last. They are excited about the move…we hope they will be able to continue to spend two or three months here each spring. My brother will be three miles away from their retirement community and they are looking forward to that proximity. We will certainly miss them!
We recently hosted a young couple from Ireland. When they arrived at our house, they commented that we had obviously spent a lot of time and effort decorating our home. Walking through the house, they commented on the furniture, pictures and other elements of “decoration”. While we HAD actually chosen paint colors, and tried to unify time periods of various furnishings, the majority of our “stuff” was not purchased, or otherwise chosen from all possible alternatives. Most of our home is furnished with items that were handed down from our extended familys’ prior households. The TV in the den sits on a table that my grandparents had in their home, and it pre-dates even their first home, as it was made just before the civil war. Our just-slightly post civil war sofa is flanked by grandma Barker’s Victrola cabinet that is matched by one we purchased at a garage sale. Our 1920s dining room set was owned first by Renee’s relatives, and was then bought from them by my grandparents. My grandfather’s bookcase and desk are featured in our living room, and many of the very old books are from his collection. The guest bedroom contains my grandparent’s bed, and there is a framed photo of a Wright Brother’s crashed airplane in the living room that was taken by grandpa Barker. Every room in our house contains artifacts that remind us of our heritage. It is a pretty awesome heritage, and that is , actually, the best gift.
Yes, Gregg, you are absolutely right! Our heritage is such a blessing and one we can pass on with gratitude to the next generations.
I was so touched by your article and what a lovely photo of your parents.
Lisa, thank you. I took the picture when we took a short hike at Mingus Mill and got some corn meal. I think about the wonderful parents you have had, I know you still miss your precious father. Phil and I ate at Clyde’s the other day and I thought of you! Blessings to you.