Verse of the Day

1 Peter 1:18-19

“For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.”
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Rogue River, OR

Mostly Cloudy, 50 F

Thursday
     Rain. High: 59 Low: 40
Friday
     Showers. High: 56 Low: 34
Saturday
     Mostly Cloudy. High: 59 Low: 40
Sunday
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Monday
     Mostly Cloudy. High: 69 Low: 41

     Family. It was designed to be a beautiful, wondrous thing that filled the walls of a house to overflowing with love. A place where we share laughter, responsibilities and sometimes tears. A place where a group of people teach and are taught life lessons about forgiveness, encouragment, respect, faith. 

     I remember as a child occasionally going to Grandpa's and Granny Ruby's house. A tension often lingered in the air that I didn't understand. Usually we (my younger brother and sister and I) opted to play outside instead than inside those walls. Simple times...we loved jumping off the cellar (3 ft down) and trying to get onto the huge propane tank in the back yard (3 foot up :o), or we try stalking skills out in an attempt to catch the wild cats in the Grandpa's shed. These things generally got us in trouble with Grandpa. Half Indian, a tall, dark, broad, working man with a deep voice and often VERYserious blue eyes... he'd scold, holler and then stand and watch us as we sulked away from our 'fun' to the front porch where we were destined to remain until mom said she was ready to leave. On the porch there were only 2 options: either play with Mrs Ruby's 'pretties' (which had the potential to get us into deeper trouble) or sit on the porch swing and listen to them talk inside. I opted for the 2nd choice while I monitored Frankie & Angela who opted for the 1st, (smile).

     I don't remember hearing laughter there as a child or from my mom as we would head home. The atmosphere was always heavy and I often thought we should just go there for Christmas and Grandpa's birthday... when all the cousins, aunts and uncles were around and there was fun, laughter and hugs. But I was only a child and Momma's know best. 

     As a child my mother told me that her mom had died when she was 16 and Granny Ruby was Grandpa's wife but not her mom. And as a teen she told me that Grandpa had actually left my Grandma Stella and the 5 kids when my mom was a toddler and took off with another woman and how he hadn't helped or been around at all for them and of how they had struggled financially to make a living in the cotton fields. I could sense her hurt and frustration and I began to see a bit of the reason behind the awkwardness.

     By the time I graduated I knew that upon Grandma Stella's death, Grandpa had not appeared on the scene to show support or offer aid or a home to his youngest, underage child. Her newly married older brother took her in and  my mom got a job at a bank as she finished out her high school years preparing to support herself. When she shared that with me I was proud she was my mom. She had reached past her pain, used the faith Grandma Stella had displayed and shared with her and moved on with the task of living.

     As years rolled on Grandpa's seriousness, and mom's melancholoy attitudes carried. The visits in between holidays were few and far between. Yet in my late teens I noticed a change taking place in my mom's relationship with Grandpa and I was glad. I spent more time on the porch swing, shelling peas and snapping beans as the conversations were carried outside and I was included. I married and had kids of my own and would often take them over to Grandpa & Granny Ruby's but now they were allowed to play on the cellar and propane tank. However, they were still not allowed to play with the cats (smile).

     Then there came a time I was wanting to make a special gift for my mom and dad, in order to do it I needed to visit with Grandpa about his past of which I, and my mom, knew little. Oh what we would learn and understand about people if we would just consider the fact that everybody has a past... and often it is dark enough to haunt us throughout decades of our life.

     Grandpa's life as a child was marked first by his dad's death when he was a young boy during the depression, followed by his mother's quick remarriage to a man who was a violent alcoholic. Grandpa took to wandering away to relatives who lived 10-30 miles a way before he hit double digits in age. He was jumping trains by the time he hit his teens. Working hard to earn his way as he ran from a troubled home. While his aunts and uncles would take him in temporarily, they knew nothing of what went on at home and should his stepfather find out where he was he would show up to retrieve him.'d stay at home with his mom and younger siblings until trouble would overwhelm them again and then off he'd go.

     Grandpa's struggles as a child and teen gave birth to an adult who would struggle most his life with how to handle children, relationships and trials. As I listened to his stories my heart broke for him and my mom.

     It is true when the scriptures say our choices and sin will follow us through our lifetime. What we can hardly bear, and don't pray for God to strengthen us to resolve, will become our children's burden and even our grandchildren's.

     It is also true that love covers a multitude of sin... and my grandfather had more problems forgiving himself than his with forgiving his stepfather after Grandpa gave his heart to the Lord in the 70's. As for my mother as I recounted my first visit with Grandpa she lingered on the verge of tears as she learned things about the man who was her father that she had never known before.

     Time heals wounds and we spent hours taking drives, just the three of us, traveling to and through the areas he had walked and lived growing up. We stood side by side at cemeteries as he remembered loved ones and days gone by and tears lingered in his own eyes. We laughed, we learned and  we collected memories that God has used to erase all the past pain.

     May is month to celebrate family, to remember those gone and to build/forge together and discover all that God designed the family to be, a haven of love... a home. Always extend forgiveness. Always encourage and speak the truth in love. Always leave God a door to reconcile, strengthen and make new... a heart, a relationship... a home.

    

Should your journey lead you to Rogue River,

whether you are just passing through or you call this area home,  

we invite you to join us here at a place we call... Grace. 

 

Worship Times:  Sunday Morning @ 8:30 and 11

Sunday School/Bible Study @ 10

Sunday Night @ 6 p.m.      Adult Disciples Cross 6 week study & Youth Group

Tuesday Night @ 6 p.m.    Men's  Small group Bible Study

Wednesday Night @ 6  

Small Group Disciples Cross 6 week study & Children's Ministry (K-6th grade)

Men's Fellowship @ Ross Chapman's


Contact Us  
Grace Baptist
4233 E. Evans Creek Rd.
Rogue River, Oregon 97537
Telephone: 541-582-2290
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Mothers Day

Join us for our baby dedication and the Celebration of Moms May 11th!!

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