Slightly Obsessed #221: Are You Green and Sappy? by Pamela Thorson on 2018-08-16 08:25:12
“The righteous man will flourish like the palm tree,
He will grow like a cedar in Lebanon.
Planted in the house of the LORD,
They will flourish in the courts of our God.
They will still yield fruit in old age;
They shall be full of sap and very green,
To declare that the LORD is upright;
He is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in Him.”
Irma was nearly one hundred years old when she left this earth. She had been elderly as long as I had known her. She was widowed at a young age and raised her children while she earned a living for them. She lived in the big house she was raised in until the infirmities age prevented her from running up and down the stairs.
She walked to work across town because she wanted to, not because she didn’t have a car. She was a member of a local prayer group and prayed fervently for others. She believed every word of the Bible and lived like it. Every Sunday during growing season, the altar was graced with flowers from her garden. She refused to take naps and survived a bout with cancer in her eighties.
One of my favorite photos of her was taken at a local riverbank where she fished with my mother. Even in the photo there is nothing static about her. She is smiling, pulling at the fishing rod while she reels in the line in fluid motion. She was never ashamed of her white hair, her laugh lines, or her faith.
She lived well and with the perfect balance of joy and dignity.
Irma was the embodiment of a person planted in the house of the Lord. Like a tree, she had set her roots deep in the soil to find the water of life. Her roots secured her against the gales of foul weather and connected her to the refreshment of the Holy Spirit.
Whenever I read Psalm 92, I think of Irma. She was a mature tree, still full of sap. There was no deadness in her. She flourished, and the fruit of the Holy Spirit was evident in her walk. She used to laugh about being green and sappy in her old age. Somehow, she made it look awesome.
In her life, Irma had suffered much. But instead of letting her wounds create bitterness, she trusted in the Lord to do the secret work of healing while she simply walked in grace. As I think back on the honor of knowing such a servant of the Most High, just four words come to mind:
Green. Sappy. Not ashamed.
About Pamela Thorson:
Pamela Thorson is a licensed practical nurse, author, and full-time caregiver. She pioneered in the homeschooling movement from 1982-2006 and authored her first book, Song in the Night, in 2008. Her second book, Out from the Shadows: 31 Devotions for the Weary Caregiver, released in 2014. She resides in the Northwest with her family.
As we smiled at the people we met on our walk I wondered at the social custom that requires face-to-face congeniality on a bike path among strangers who would soon be in our respective cars fighting over a lane change. It’s easier to be mad at people when we can’t see their faces.
Slightly Obsessed #226: Triune
In its most basic element, our very existence mirrors His Godhead in trinity. Each person enters time and space as three: body, soul, and spirit.
Slightly Obsessed #225: Why Lightning Doesn't Strike the Wicked
The popular radio host was on a rampage, vehemently damning God. He crowned the diatribe by flinging a challenge at God to strike him down at that very moment. He smugly interpreted heaven's silence as proof that there is no God. But what was really happening?
Slightly Obsessed #224: When the Pressure Feels Too Great
The fig I found in a local big box store had already been trimmed into a lovely miniature tree with an unusual trunk. Little did I understand what it takes to train a plant into a bonsai, and what that process would teach me about God.
Slightly Obsessed #223: Right Clothes, Wrong Spirit
Satan seeks to deceive us, divide us, and destroy us. His bag of tricks and sleight of hand are impressive but imaginary trapdoors to disillusionment. He constantly roams the earth in an insatiable search for humans to devour.
Slightly Obsessed #222: The Rain
Like the grass, the human heart has shallow roots and fades quickly in the dry season. But those shallow roots also are the first to taste the rain.