Oct 4, 2012

Thursday SHINE....

Today's Reading: Matthew 4

Happy Serve Day Thursday, SHINE girls!

Make a point today to serve someone today. A kind gesture, an encouraging word, a coffee, anything! Be the hands and feet of Jesus as you encounter others today, girls. What a difference we make for His Kingdom when we look after the needs of others before ourselves.

"Each of you should look not only to your own interests, 
but also to the interests of others."
 Philippians 2:4

Today, it is my absolute privilege to share a post by my beautiful friend, Leslie Jones. Leslie shared her story with us a while back, you probably remember her. If not, go here and check out her story. Powerful!

Leslie is also one of our SHINE prayer partners. So, she prays for YOU a lot!  

Be blessed by her words. This story will bring you to tears, so grab your Kleenex, girls. :-)

Thursday SHINE
by: Leslie Jones

Leslie and Hal
Good morning girls! Jill asked me a while back to share again. I asked her for a topic or subject and she gave me free rein. That equals stumped in my mind! I have prayed since that God would give me the exact words you need to hear. He blessed "my socks off" last Thursday afternoon. I pray it'll bless you as well.

When I met my husband, Hal, I also met a man who worked for him named Ty.  I was told Ty was Hal's right hand man. Ty was responsible for yard maintenance at Hal's business properties, Hal's personal property, and he worked at Hal's farm caring for the animals, etc. It didn't take long for me to realize Ty was more than an employee; Hal and Ty were friends. 

I've joked in the past and said when Hal and I got married I was blessed with two step-daughters and Ty. And really, there's no other way to explain it. Ty was always around. Hal nor I did a project around the house without him. Ty found great pride in keeping our yard beautiful. He loved helping me decorate for Christmas! He didn't mind the slew of boxes I'd need to get down from the attic or how many different times I'd want to move the tree until it was in just the right spot! I like to tell that we worked on projects together, but the truth is Ty wouldn't let me do much. His favorite phrase to me was, "Leslie I got this. Sit in the shade before you break a nail!" 

Leslie and Ty
One summer I decided just days before having a celebration at our home that I wanted new pine straw in the flowerbeds, etc. Because we were short on time I insisted on helping Ty lay the straw. He fussed at me all day long. I smiled all day. Towards the end of the day we were all getting tired and I slipped coming off the trailer and cut my leg. The remainder of straw was laid by Ty and Hal, as I sat in the shade. 

Ty and Hal
In the spring of 2011 Ty started having stomach problems which kept him from eating much. His weight dropped drastically. Hal and I both begged Ty to go to the doctor but he wouldn't. That fall, September 09 to be exact, Ty was diagnosed with cancer of the esophagus. On November 08, 2011 Ty met his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Hal and I were honored to know Ty, to share in his sweet life, and then be listed as his brother and sister in his obituary. 

I have a bench that sits near the backdoor of our house. This bench was originally painted white and then a few years ago I decided I wanted it brown. I was getting paint and brushes out one afternoon and Ty took over...you know, 'cause I'd probably "break a nail."  :)

 A few months ago I noticed the sun was causing the paint on this bench to chip. Usually I'd put this project on my "to-do" list and have it sanded and repainted in days. This time was different, I found myself not wanting to sand off the paint Ty had put on this bench. Then last week I noticed paint chips in our house. The sun damage was getting worse and now we were tracking it in. Through tears, Thursday afternoon I sanded the bench. I admit I had a little anger in addition to my overwhelming sadness. It's just not fair, I thought. It's been almost a year since we lost him...how can I still be this sad? Why has the sun damaged Ty's work? My attitude was not good. I sanded the majority of the bench and decided to turn it on it's side to get the bottom portion of the legs. I immediately noticed the bottom of the bench was still white! I laughed out loud! How funny that Ty had only painted what could be seen! Then something caught my eye...in brown paint, over the white, were Ty's fingerprints. Ty's precious finger prints are safely protected under my bench. No sanding required. 

Ty's fingerprints 

This blessed me girls, it really did. How very precious is our Father in Heaven? Years ago, He knew I'd need this gift. 

I realized that I had been holding on to sun damaged, chipping paint. A big mess really. It wasn't until I was willing to let go of this mess that I was able to see the beautiful gift God had for me.

What are you holding on to today? I shared a physical example but I could share some that aren't as well. Do you trust our Father in Heaven enough to let go?

Turn it upside down today.

Expecting a blessing on your flip side, 

We have moved...

 Looking for Shine Girls? We have moved to a new space! You can find us at www.jill-hill.com Also known as Rise and Shine with Jill Hill! C...