My New Dress

Do you remember your first store-bought clothes?  When I was about 12, when school started, a church lady told Mama she wanted to buy my younger sister and me a couple of dresses. One of my dresses was a light yellow shirt-waist dress, with short sleeves. I felt like a princess in it.

We were already well-dressed children. Our mother was a good seamstress and made most of our clothes, and besides that we had pretty hand-me-downs too. I look back at my school pictures and recognize some of those nice hand-made dresses and hand-me-downs, but it was so exciting to get a new store-bought dress.

When I took home economics in junior high school and later in high school, Mama came up with the money somehow to buy material and patterns. We had already learned the basics from Mama, sewing aprons on her electric sewing machine, so it didn’t take much to encourage us girls to sew, which all three of us still do.

Mother used to say, “We aren’t poor, we just don’t have much money.” We had what we needed—food on the table, electricity, gas heat, and running water in the paid-for home Granddad and Daddy built—but I’ve often wondered how many things Mama did without herself. All her faith was placed in God to provide for us, but she also worked hard.

Paul sent a letter to Timothy in which he complimented his mother and grandmother. “….When I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice.” II Timothy 1:5 NKJV.

Timothy was taught his faith by his mother and grandmother. He saw their actions, their every-day lives, and witnessed the results of their faith. We children watched our mother every day as children always do, and we witnessed her life of faith, following the Lord, and depending on God to provide.

We learned how to sew from her, yes, but we learned so much more and now the genuine faith that dwelt first in our mother Eunice dwells in each of us.


What We Eat

After I moved back to Vinita, Oklahoma, in 1977, my little son and I would go to Grand Lake fishing with Mom and Dad sometimes.

Daddy would say, “Let’s go fishing,” then head outside to mess around with his fishing poles and tackle. Mom packed crackers and cheese, apples, cookies, napkins in a paper grocery sack. She poured the boiled coffee in the thermos. A jacket in case it turned cool on the water, a book for me to read in case the fish weren’t biting. Just the necessary stuff. Oh, and the flashlight. Don’t forget the metal Ever-ready flashlight.

Then we’d pile into the old ’57 Ford with the non-functioning stick shift on the column and a 4-in-the-floor that shifted backwards and stuck through an open hole cut in the floorboard. We’d have to roll the windows down for “air conditioning.”

Along the way we had to stop at Simpson’s bait shop to buy worms and minnows, Snicker bars and bottles of pop. Daddy always said, “Why do you women have to turn every little thing into a picnic?” He was going to catch fish. We were going to relax, enjoy life, read a book, visit a little after a hectic week.

It is the woman’s way–providing nutrition for her family. Birthday? Cake and ice cream. The family together after church on Sunday? Fried chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy. Anniversary? Going out to eat. Friday night date? Movies, popcorn and soda pop. Thanksgiving or Christmas? Turkey dinner for the family. Baby shower? Cake and punch, with party-mix nuts.

Paul talked about food in Romans 14:17KJV. “For the kingdom of God is not meat or drink, but righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.”

There is nothing wrong with eating to celebrate, as long as you remember, that what you eat or don’t eat does not bring you righteousness, peace, and joy. It might be true that we are what we eat, but my value as a child of God doesn’t come from natural things.

What I eat doesn’t define who I am in Christ.

Aroma of Christ

My daddy smelled like strong coffee, cigarettes, and Coalgate Foamy shave cream. I loved to pat his soft cheeks after he shaved at night and kiss him goodnight.

Perfume companies spend millions trying to come up with the perfect smell. They have found that a man’s favorite smell is pumpkin pie. Smells are so very important, but we don’t think much about it. I’ve heard of children hugging their mom’s nightgown to go to sleep at night when mom is out of town. Several years ago, some stores had smells  blowing through their ventilation system—supposedly it caused people to buy more when they were in the store. Here is another example–when I was pregnant, my husband had to quit putting on aftershave at bedtime because it nauseated me. Perfume companies spend millions trying to come up with the perfect smell. They have found that a man’s favorite smell is pumpkin pie.

Have you ever noticed that your body picks up smells just from being around them. If you hang around a cigar smoker, you smell like smoke. If you stand over the barbeque grill, cooking hamburgers, you begin to smell like hickory. Have you ever picked up the telephone after someone else has used it, someone who had on perfume? You end up with that perfume smell on you.
The more you hang around with Jesus, the more you will smell just like Him, act like Him, talk like Him, walk like Him, do the things He did.  “For we are the aroma of Christ to God.” 2 Corinthians 2:15 NRS

Can you believe that to God we smell just like Jesus?