I was telling someone how eclectic my music playlist is. It sounds funny, I know, but one playlist consists of famous baritones singing opera arias and the next song is a trio of three Country music queens, Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris and Linda Ronstadt, Barbra Streisand, Elvis Presley. Then there is my Gospel, Classical, Voices of Lee, Bible Institute singers, Sax solo of Try a Little Tenderness, You are So Beautiful to me by Joe Cocker, other songs by Eddie Rabbit, Don Williams and the one I chose today, Have I Told You Lately That I Love You? Van Morrison. It set off a flood of memories and thoughts.
When I was a little girl, four years old to be exact, we lived in Lancaster, SC in a parsonage that was on the back of a piece of property behind what they used to call a “Juke Joint”. Every night the crowds would gather and you could hear the music playing and people laughing and calling out to each other, horns of their cars honking and engines racing, it was quite entertaining for me, as we had no television! I remember that the last song played, every night was Good Night Irene, never heard of it have you? In our front yard I had a little sand box that daddy made for me, and one day as I was playing in it and using cups to make buildings. I had an old billfold that daddy had given me to play with and to my surprise when I opened the wallet to “pay” for one of the buildings, there was a twenty dollar bill in it! I stood up shaking the sand from my panties, and took it in the house to my daddy. I didn’t understand his reaction as he burst into tears and started thanking God for answering his prayer! Seems that he needed that amount of money for something important and was at that point, penniless! I can’t explain how it happened, but knowing that God created us from the dust of the earth, I like to think He created that money from the sand! OK so it was probably put into a hidden fold to save and then forgotten about, but it’s my memory I can think what I like!
One day Jesus was discussing paying taxes with Peter and Jesus asked, “Who pays the taxes the King levies?” Peter answered, “The subjects” Jesus said, and “Then the children get off free, right but so we don’t upset them needlessly, go down to the lake, cast a hook, and pull in the first fish that bites. Open its mouth and you’ll find a coin. Take it and give it to the taxmen. It will be enough for both of us.” Matthew 17:26-27
I tucked that memory away and thought of the last time I saw my grandfather Mushegan. I cannot write this without tearing and thinking of his words of wisdom to me. I wish I had paid more attention, listened a little closer, did I tell him that I loved him? The same with my Uncle who was always telling me things I needed to do with my life, did I say, “Uncle Harding, I love you?” It’s easy to think of things like this, after the fact. I guess hearing a song that dredges up old feelings can help you bring them to the surface and deal with them.
For all the times I have fallen on my knees and cried out to God saying only, “Help me”, and He has given me direct answers, have I told Him that I loved Him?
John 14:21 “The person who knows my commandments and keeps them, that’s who loves me. And the person who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and make myself plain to him.” 1 John 5:1 Every person who believes that Jesus is, in fact, the Messiah, is God-begotten. If we love the One who conceives the child, we’ll surely love the child who was conceived. The reality test on whether or not we love God’s children is this: Do we love God? Do we keep his commands? The proof that we love God comes when we keep his commandments and they are not at all troublesome.
I guess the point is in the old adage, “Actions speak louder than words.” If you love Him keep His commandments and love His children! And by the way, have I told you lately that I love and pray for you? I do!