People are Important

 (Not the actual house but similar.)
Growing up I lived in a tiny rural area called Rocky Creek. There was actually a creek, I was baptized in it. I lived in a little house made of wood with real wood floors where the knots in some of the boards were missing so my granny would get a roll of linoleum and nail it down over the floor.
There were no screens on the windows and in the summer time the windows were propped open with a wooden plank. A fly swatter was used to swat flies and from time to time, a snake would find its way through a tear in the screen door. Summers are hot in Florida. We had something very few have today…we had sweat and heat rash. Every afternoon at nap time I’d lay in the bed wearing only little shorts and I’d toss and turn until sleep would overtake me and I’d doze into peaceful bliss…or maybe not so peaceful…
We didn’t have much money in those days. My mama worked to put food on the table and granny would take care of us and the household duties. My parents were divorced so I rarely saw my dad.
My cousin Maria lived down the dirt road from me and my cousin Juanita lived across the street, caddy corner from us. I loved to play outside. I was always running and doing cartwheels and skin the cat on an old swing-set we had. But my favorite thing to do was to play in the woods, of course granny would scold me every time she caught me going there because she said there were rattle snakes in those woods.
For me it was an adventure, a jungle, to be explored and there were lots of trees to climb. I was only four or five years old but I thought I was grown. It’s funny how our perspective changes as we mature. I remember like it was yesterday as the saying goes…I’d have a wonderful time in those woods but I paid the consequences when granny found out. She’d get the switch and around and around we’d go…she would sting my legs and I’d scream, “I won’t do it no more, I won’t do it no more.”
But come Saturday afternoon, back to the woods I’d go.
Until one day when my brother was in those woods with his dog, Rough-Neck, a gray-hound someone had given him. Regan loved that dog. That dog also loved Regan. A rattle snake was about to strike Regan when Rough-Neck jumped in front of the snake and saved Regan’s life. That was one of the saddest days of our lives. Mom wouldn’t get off work to take the dog to the vet and he died. It broke Regan’s heart and it broke my heart to see my brother in so much pain. I don’t think he ever got over it.
There are always consequences for the things we know not to do but we do them anyway. The Bible says the wages of sin is death…
We can be forgiven but that doesn’t change the fact that we will have to pay a high cost for our actions.
Last night I had a dream in the dream someone was talking to me about what I thought was important. I looked at the person and I said, “The most important thing in this life is people. Relationships. You can have lots of toys and fancy cars and big houses and take trips and have lots of money but those things aren’t as important as people.”
I thought about that this morning, and the relationships I’ve had over my lifetime and where some of those people are now. My Uncle Book died in 1966. My granny died in 1989. Maria died in 1993. My brother died in 2007. My step-dad died in 2003, and my precious mother died in 2015. I can’t bring them back. I can’t talk to them anymore. But the times we spent together were priceless and I will never forget how much we loved each other. Even in disagreements we still loved each other, we got over it, and moved on.
I think when we are young we take people for granted without even thinking about it. We just figure they’ll always be around. But as I age and time goes by I’ve come to realize anyone can die at any time. I know we can’t live our lives in fear and constantly worrying about it. But we can be a little more aware and when there is a disagreement to be quick to forgive. None of us are perfect we are just people.
People with emotions and challenges and health issues…people with personality conflicts and some people can make us so mad sometimes…but you know what, they are still the most important think in this life.
And I have to bring this up because, well, it’s in my DNA…God thought people were the most important too…He sent his only son, Jesus, into this world to die for us because he loved people so much …You and Me, people with flaws and sin so dark, so un-lovable, so wretched, vile and evil, but he loves us anyway. He knew that if people would ask His son to come and live in their hearts that they would change. He knew that if they would build that relationship with His son that they’d come to know, and love Him too. He knew that if they accepted Jesus and talked to Him and would allow the Holy Spirit to work in their hearts that they would love others too.
John 3:16 is a scripture I learned early on in the little Baptist church I went to as a child…it was my first memory verse… “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever (people) believeth in him should never perish but have everlasting life.” (I was raised on the King James Version)
If you’re having a disagreement with someone, don’t put off getting together with them and restoring that relationship. Humble yourself, let go of pride and wanting to be right. I’d rather be reconciled to my loved one, than have them die and never have the opportunity to see or talk to them again. The other thing is, you could be the one to die. Keep your heart right before God. He’s never wrong.
Now on a happier note because I don’t want to leave you in this somber state…
Today is a good day to love people, forgive people, go and enjoy your life!
~~Marla Shaw O’Neill July 22, 2017
I love the Lord Jesus Christ and am passionate about writing. I hope you enjoy the blog and come to visit often. Then the Lord answered me and said: “Write the vision And make it plain on tablets, That he may run who reads it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time; But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; Because it will surely come, It will not tarry. “Behold the proud, His soul is not upright in him; But the just shall live by his faith. Habakkuk 2: 2-4
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