I Ship it Like Fed-ex

Hey y’all… how’s your mama and ’em?

Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.“Love is a feeling you feel when you’re feeling a feeling you’ve never felt before.”  That was the definition of love given to me as a child by the late Mrs. Tommie Griffin.  As a child, the catchy phrase satisfied my desire to understand love.  As a teenager, I learned  feelings tend to be based more on infatuation than deep, abiding love.  And as an adult, I have come to understand that love has little at all to do with feelings, but instead, is a choice you must continually make to put another’s well being before your own.

St. Valentine understood that.  When an edict was issued banning marriage in an attempt to keep soldier’s minds focused on war rather than family, St. Valentine married lovers in secret.  He believed so strongly in Christian marriage that he was willing to lose his life to protect it.  Legend is told that while in jail awaiting execution, St. Valentine prayed for the healing of the blind daughter of a jailer.  Upon being healed, the two exchanged correspondence.  In his last letter to the jailer’s daughter,  the note was signed, “From Your Valentine”.  To remember the legacy of St. Valentine, Valentine’s Day is now observed.

Loving the people we like is an easy enough task, but what about those people who are “thorns in our flesh”?  Jesus said it doesn’t matter.  “If you love only those who love you, why should you get credit for that? Even sinners love those who love them! And if you do good only to those who do good to you, why should you get credit? Even sinners do that much!  Love your enemies! Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to be repaid.”  (Luke 6:32-33, 35a NLT)  How then do we love?  1 Corinthians 13:4-7 gives us a good reference.  “Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.”  27849627_10154925536741511_1963260277_n

Love without sacrifice is not really love.  Love will always cost you something, but it will always be worth it.  St. Valentine lived what he believed, and it cost him everything.  He lived out 1 John 3:18 that reads, “Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions.”  Actions speak louder than words.  We need to make sure our actions communicate love to everyone we come in contact.

Have a blessed and love-filled week, y’all!




In the Middle of an Ordinary Life

Hey y’all… how’s your mama and ’em?

Screen Shot 2017-11-10 at 1.42.42 PM“Sometimes in the middle of an ordinary life love gives us a fairy tale.”  Those were the words on the invitation to mine and Tommy’s vow renewal ceremony a couple of years ago, and they are just as true today as they were then.  We aren’t anyone special.  By the worlds standards, we don’t amount to much.  Neither of us have degrees or titles.  We don’t have a fancy house or fancy cars.  But we have each other and four beautiful, wonderful children.  For us, that is enough, and in our eyes, we’re the richest folks in the world.

When Tommy and I met, I was not interested in settling down.  I was “state hopping” across the south in an effort to “find myself”.  I had a cynical view of men and marriage and was not going to be tied down to someone who would ultimately cause me misery and grief.  But Tommy was different than the other guys I’d dated.  He treated me like a princess.  More than that, he treated me like I mattered and was adored.  I can never remember feeling more content, stable, or at peace than when I was with him.  When I found him, I finally found myself.

Four months from the day we met, we eloped on my lunch break.  That was twenty years ago today.  In those twenty years, we have experienced “better and worse”, “richer and poorer”, and “sickness and health”.  We have tested the bounds of the “worse, poorer, and sickness” on more occasions than I care to remember.  In those twenty years, everything that has been thrown at us to break us apart, God has used to build us closer together.  Through everything we’ve been, we’ve fallen more in love with one another.


Our 2013 Vow Renewal

My daughter’s boyfriend recently told her, “They are my goal,” meaning he hopes to have a relationship like we do when he’s at this point in his life.  If he was trying to win brownie points with the parents, it worked; I cannot think of many better compliments.  Tommy and I do not possess any great secrets that have blessed us with such great marital bliss.  We simply follow Paul’s directions laid out in Ephesians 5:22, 25 that read, “Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord.  Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.”  (I know not everyone likes the word “submit”, but y’all, it’s easy to submit to a man that loves you the way Christ loved the church.)Tommy and I feel very blessed to have the relationship that we do.  We both work to keep our love fresh and alive.  On days that Tommy leaves for work before I wake up, I am greeted with a text message that reads, “Good morning, beautiful.  I love you.”  When he pulls up in the drive-way after work, I still run out to greet him and welcome him home.  It is the giving and receiving that makes it work.  Our favorite place to be is together and when we are together, we do the following:  we hold hands (wherever we are); we play (sometimes as simple as thumb war); we talk (about everything and about nothing); we laugh A LOT (it’s the best medicine); we flirt (it’s our favorite method of torturing our children); we support each other’s ideas and interests (no matter how insane they may seem); we dream (we have so much planned for our future); we have each other’s back (he’s my number one and I’m his).  To sum it up – we love.  Love is not a feeling but an action.  Love is putting someone else before yourself and choosing their good over your own.


So you see, it is true:  “Sometimes in the middle of an ordinary life, love gives us a fairy tale.”  I have now spent half of my life married to the man of my dreams, and I plan to spend the next half loving him and continuing to live “happily ever after each and every day”.

I love you, Tommy!  Happy Anniversary!!

Have a blessed week y’all!


IMG_3751It is a common misconception that dogs are colorblind.  While our canine companions do not enjoy the vast array or vividness of colors that the we do, dogs can differentiate between certain colors.  Far more impressive than a dogs ability to discern colors is their ability to seemingly know what is in a person’s heart.

Most days that I work, my four-year-old Golden Retriever, Boondocks, accompanies me to the office.  He prefers snoozing behind my desk as opposed to being left home all day, and he always welcomes the opportunity to meet and make new friends.

Most folks that come into the office are friendly and stop by to say “hi”.  Without a doubt – and without guidance from me – Boondocks always seems to know who is here for what purpose.  Boon will sit behind my desk and whine if he hears Mr. Joe come in without greeting him, and yet he sometimes seems more suspicious of workmen that come in for routine maintenance.  His perception of people reminds me of a verse from the Bible,

But the Lord said to Samuel, “Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”  1 Samuel 16:7

Boondocks does not base his opinion of people by their ethnicity, by their social status, by their sexual orientation, by their beliefs – cultural or religious -, rather he judges by what is on the inside.  He was made to love, and he does so – for love’s sake.

1 Peter 4:8 says,

Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.

When we look at a person for what is in their heart, we are able to love them freely.  When we become more concerned about their soul than our opinion of how they live and how they sin differently than we do we are able to offer them the unconditional love that God has given us and asked us to give others.

John 13:35 says,

“Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”

Notice it doesn’t say “your approval of one another” but rather “love”.

I challenge you today to love like a dog.  Show other’s His agape love not for what they’ve done but because God has created them in His image and called us to do so.  If we all would commit to this kind of love, we truly would change the world.


God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.  Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other. No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is brought to full expression in us.  1 John 4:9-12