... Even the worst heartaches can become heartstrings to God's hope, comfort, encouragement, joy, peace and love...

Welcome! As a fan of the cartoon character Maxine, I enjoy her witty remarks. But when I
read my blogs & other writing to her, she's not very responsive- even when I'm wearing my bunny slippers like hers! She just doesn't get it!
Although she's funnier than I am, I do pray that this site will bring encouragement to your day! I'd love to hear from you! Unlike Maxine, you can leave me a message via the Comments. Shalom, Connie


Wednesday, August 31, 2016

The Value of Pen and Paper

        We've been talking about chronic illness and the gift of time. Here is another use of that precious gift.

When I was 7 we moved to yet another town- it was our 5th or 6th move. Next door was a loving, caring older couple, who we adopted as our grandparents. Grandpa Bill wasn't with us for very long, but Grandma Nelle lived a very long life. She saw the positive in everything and was a "grand" role model ~ her life-long ministry.

In her 80s, her only child moved to Florida and felt Nelle should be near her. It broke Grandma Nelle's heart losing all her friends. Shortly after arriving she had a stroke, and her daughter placed her in a nursing home.

When Grandma Nelle moved to FL, I wrote 1-2 letters a month. Just chatty stuff, what I was doing, about my son and any news about her friends. After her stroke, I was more diligent writing 2 or more letters every month until she died.

One of her nurses wrote to me shortly after Nelle's death to thank me for all the letters. She went on to explain that Nelle had the nurses read the letters aloud for the other residents to hear. They all felt like they knew me...that I was part of their families.

Then Rev. Al stopped to visit and continued the saga of my letters. For her whole life, Nelle had shared her faith. When she had a 2nd stroke, she could no longer speak. However, it was through my letters that she continued her ministry.

There was nothing special about my letters, I just chatted as if I had stopped by for a visit. I had no idea the impact of those letters, which she kept tied with ribbons.

Although I use e-mails most of the time, I have never forgotten the ripple effect of handwritten letters. I love the feeling of ink flowing across pretty paper. I still hand write to a few of my lifelong friends. 
For my grandchildren, I hand write letters, notes and cards with the hope that they will keep them- my way of leaving my legacy. In the same way, I am writing a Gramma book for each of them.



Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Time and Prayer

As I thought about my gift of time- due to my chronic illnesses and physical limitations- I realized I had to give my best with what I can do rather than focusing on what I can no longer do.

I expressed my thoughts and feelings through this prayer, which I framed and placed on my desk as a daily reminder.

May my better moments be Yours, 
O Lord to do with as You may.
May my needlework stitches be even 
and entwined with love.
May my writing be Your thoughts, 
not my opinions.
May my resting renew my strength 
and refresh my spirit.
May my down times provide time 
to ponder Your goodness to me.
May my studying and reading 
prepare me to glorify You, Lord.
May my teaching touch hearts 
and draw them nearer to You.
May my life be a reflection 
of Your love. 



Saturday, August 20, 2016

The Gift of Chronic Illness

For over 12 years I was the Director of Nursing in a Long Term Care facility. When my patients felt helpless, hopeless and without purpose, I would remind them of two things: the gift of time that they had been given and the opportunity to offer prayers for the golden bowls of heaven.

Let my prayer be accepted as 
sweet-smelling incense in your presence. 
(Psalms 141:2b, GW)

When the lamb had taken the scroll, 
the four living creatures and 
the 24 leaders bowed in front of him. 
Each held a harp and a gold bowl 
full of incense, 
the prayers of God’s holy people.
(Rev. 5:8, GW)

Now I am the one with physical limitations and must take my own advice to heart.

Selah- think on this

Next post "Time Plus Action"

Monday, August 15, 2016

 My days for serving

               the Lord are numbered...

                              I must give Him my best.

At age 72, I am limited physically from doing what my heart desires. I had to work through the grieving process because chronic illness results in many losses. I had to restructure my life with lots of flexibility because...

 Thanks to oxygen 24/7.

Others days I can do a load of laundry, wash some dishes, or vacuum but I do things in small steps and rest in between.

I remember when my son was little and wouldn't take naps. Instead, I made him rest. 

He would lie quietly on his bed or on the sofa with a Matchbox car or a book for at least 20 minutes because Mommy needed the quiet times to reboot. I would read a book or do needlework. Sometimes we actually fell asleep. 

Now, all these years later this mommy/gramma requires quiet times most of the day.

It's easy to say I no longer can contribute anything to anyone and just have Pitiful Pearl days. (See previous posts.) However, I have a very valuable treasure:


Next post: My productive use of time.



Wednesday, August 03, 2016

Sample Of My Pity Party Bashers

My Pity Party Bashers

Out the window…    sunny and calm at present, blue sky; high of 80 predicted                        
I am so glad… 2 of my short stories were published  last month

I am wearing…   my blue nightgown  ~ I need to get dressed or I won't leave my apt.          
A memory that makes me smile… my grandson's recent graduation

I hear…  occasional street traffic ~ I need to turn on some peppy music                             
My favorite… things to do are knit, embroider, read, mentor, write, edit, watch movies. color, Sudoku puzzles, visit with friends, study Scripture

My favorite color… blue, purple & pink  ~ I need to wear a bright color                                    
Music… classical ~ need to turn on CD of upbeat music

I am inspired by… images of wise quotations, which I collect                                      

If money was no obstacle, I… would move to a larger (2 bedroom) senior retirement apt. with meals and housecleaning provided so I could concentrate on my writing & the things I enjoy. Plus there'd be more space for when my family visited.

I feel… sad because my son hasn't called since returning from vacation 3 days ago 
I am thankful… my family had a happy and safe trip to their Oma & Opa's

My favorite poem…  Drop a Pepple in the Water about the ripple effect of our lives 

An important truth… I am the child and heir of the King of the Universe/the Lover of my soul

I am learning… how to adjust to my physical limitations, which is difficult for me 
A Spiritual highlight… sharing my Noah Study with a small group and online

My favorite smell…  lavender, yeast bread in the oven                                     

A source of joy… newly adopted grandson along with his big brother & big sister

I think…  I need to practice more what I recommend/talk about                                                    
Over a cup of tea, let’s chat… about happy memories

I am praying… for the Noah Study to draw us closer to God & 
                      to create a hunger for more in-depth studies                                             
A book I recommend… The Illuminator, a novel about the first English Bibles

My favorite Scripture… 1 Corinthians 2:6-16 to know the mind of God                            

A friend… Alene & Barb, life-long friends

A movie I recommend… WarRoom                              

My favorite flower… wisteria & plumeria

Normally, I/you would only write a few lines, I did all of the prompts as a sample. However, they are accurate today as I am writing them. Some would be different on other days.


  • Opened the blinds to increase the light in my apt.
  • Got dressed; wearing a bright cheery red tee & a dab of lipstick.
  • Thoughts of my friend Barb in Hawaii & the Hawaiian flowers led to playing a CD of Hawaiian music & fond memories.
  • Invited a friend to chat with me while I did a load of laundry
Very tired but have a more positive attitude.

Selah~ think on these when next you have a down day.


Tuesday, August 02, 2016

Pity Party Bashers

Life's heartaches throw us off balance emotionally. Little things become big and the truly

big things become little. Your focus is on yourself and your troubles. Resolution

will bring balance. But until then, it is as if a dark veil is covering your face so 

you cannot see reality. Self-absorption is not easily fixed by setting aside your 

problems, reading Scripture and praying or concentration on someone worse off than you.

Nor do comments like “snap out of it” work.

It is difficult to focus on anything when energy levels are low. So I decided to stick 

with “me, me, me.” The idea being to shift from a negative to a more positive  picture of 

myself; thus removing that dark veil to reveal a brighter world.

What could I do from the confines of my recliner? Write! 

And the Pity Party Bashers were born.

I used writing prompts. Full sentences, good grammar, spelling, and punctuation are not 

required. Just scribble down a response.

Write for a minimum of 3 minutes using one or more of the following prompts:

Out the window…                                          I am so glad…

I am wearing…                                              A memory that makes me smile…

I hear…                                                       My favorite…

My favorite color…                                       Music…

I am inspired by…                                        If money was no obstacle, I…

I feel…                                                        I am thankful…

My favorite poem…                                       An important truth…

I am learning…                                             A Spiritual highlight…

My favorite smell…                                       A source of joy…

I think…                                                      Over a cup of tea, let’s chat…

I am praying…                                              A book I recommend…

My favorite Scripture…                               A friend…

A movie I recommend…                                 My favorite flower…

Save you responses and add to them later as needed. 

When Pitiful Pearl has left, you are done.

Ó 2015 Constance Gilbert