Saturday, May 10, 2014

Thoughts shared about my Mom, Audella Evans

             Some thoughts that I shared about my Mom a few years ago at a Mother-Daughter Banquet.  I share them here, with love,  Chris 

* * *

My heritage goes back to my Great-Grandmother Beatrice Dorton.  Those of us in her family had the privilege of knowing her gentle ways and her devotion to the Lord.  She not only talked the talk, she walked the walk!  

And "Walking the Walk" is really what is most important - because we can say many things and put on a good front, but our day to day living - our walking and living daily in our homes and workplaces - says more about who and what we really are.

My mother - Audella Evans - is the most God-ly person I know.  Now, I don't say that because she is my Mom!  I say that because I have never known anyone to be as loving, giving, and nurturing as she is.  

I grew up in the "dark ages" before computers and computer games!  So Mom taught me how to play jack-rocks and hop-scotch, to color the flowers on table napkins, and to make paper chains for party decoration.  She taught me how to cook, to sew, to clean house, how to do ceramics, how to arrange flowers.  But there are a lot of other things she taught me, not by her words but by her actions:

1. Mom did not tell me to be faithful to my husband, she showed me by living faithfully with my father thru good times and bad, for over 30 years, right up to the day he died.

2. She did not tell me to honor my father and mother, she showed me by putting her life on hold, going to West Virginia, and caring for the day-to-day needs of my Grandmother, until my Grandmother died.

3. She did not tell me to be put other first, she showed me by always taking the back piece of the fried chicken so us kids could have the good pieces.

4. She did not tell me to be honest, she showed me by giving the cashier back money when she was given more than she was due.

5. She did not tell me to be a good neighbor, she showed me by caring for an elderly neighbor, without pay, for almost 2 years until the lady died.

6. She did not tell me to be concerned about others, she showed me by taking hot soup and home-made bread to a hurting wife whose husband was dying of cancer.

7. She did not tell me that listening was more important than talking, she shows me by always letting me "dump" on her when I needed to vent about a work-place problem!

8. She did not tell me prayer is important, she shows me by interceding to God for me every day and for every things.

9. She does not just tell me that she loves me, she shows me by always being there - 

listening to me when I'm angry, 
comforting me when I'm hurt, 
and loving me unconditionally even when 
                                          I am unlovable.


        You see, our Walk talks louder than our Talk talks.  To put it in scriptural terms, 

Deut. 6:7 says  "And thou shalt teach them  [them being the precepts of God]  diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up."  

This means that in our day-to-day lives, we are to show forth the truths of God's word and the love shown to us in Jesus.

I am blessed to have the heritage of those ladies that truly "walked the walk"!

Friday, May 9, 2014

Acts of Love

Martha Walker and her mother, Cordia Dunn

This was written in 2002 when my Mother-in-law, Cordia Gentry Dunn, went to be with the Lord.                                            
                                     Shared in love, Chris 


Acts of Love

There are angels among us that we take for granted.  My sister-in-law, Martha Watson Walker, is one of those.  She doesn't see herself as an angel, and that is what makes her so special!

Martha is the only daughter that my mother-in-law had, and Martha was always there for Mom.  So naturally when Mom Dunn and my father-in-law were no longer able to take care of themselves, it was Martha that saw to it that they were moved next door so that she could care for them herself.  Then, as their health continued to deteriorate and the roles reversed, it was Martha that did the custodial care.  When Mom Dunn and Frank had to be placed in a continuous care facility, it was Martha that handled the details.  When the dementia took Mom Dunn's short-term memory, it was Martha that was there daily to care for Mom's needs, especially her emotional needs, even though Mom Dunn couldn't remember that this lady was her only daughter.

And when the Lord called Mom Dunn home, it was Martha that held Mom's hand and loved her as the last breath of life slowly released from Mom's lips and her body lay still.  It was Martha that was there to kiss the cheek, still warm with the last touches of life, and to whisper, "I love you."

Acts of love can be done spontaneously, out of necessity, and are often done out of duty.  But continually giving devotedly of oneself with no expectation of payment, reward, or thanks is CHARACTER.  And my precious sister-in-law is a Lady of tremendous Character - she is truly an Angel among us!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Thoughts on Mothers

This is one of my favorite paintings by Sandra Kuck!  
(Not only does she capture such exquisite detail, she captures essence!)

Some thoughts I have gathered from others and share here, with love.                               Chris

* * *

"I love each of my children unconditionally and differently.  I show my love for each of them according to their need." 
       Mom (Audella) Evans

"Remembering her own worth is the best example a Mother can use to build her child's self-esteem."  

"More is caught than taught; that is why your unspoken influence on your children is so important."  
       John Brothers, Pastor
       Gill Grove Baptist Church

"A Mother is at the same time both as courageous as a lioness protecting her cubs, and as gentle as a shepherd watching over the flock."  

"When you think you have nothing to give, you can always give love.  After all, that's what children need more than anything else anyway."  
       Connie Engles, 
       Gill Grove Baptist Church Nursery Coordinator

"The first Bible I ever handled was my Mother's Bible.  It was worn, torn and ragged with use, but I loved it.  I knew she's been reading those pages, and I wanted to do the same. ...  At the same time, my mother was a wonderful encourager.  She never said anything that would strike against my self-esteem. ... Through her constant encouragement, my mother helped me to be the man I am today, and I carry a part of her with me in everything I do."     
       Dr. Charles Stanley, Pastor
       First Baptist Church of Atlanta


"Happy Mother's Day to you all!  

      To those of us who still have our Mothers, treasure the moment. 
       To those of us whose Mothers have gone on, treasure the memories.  
          To those of us who may have issues with our Mothers, today is the day to settle it - tomorrow may be too late. 
        To those of us who had Mothers that made us go to church when we didn't want to, no matter where life took us we always came back to Mom's way, because deep in our hearts we knew it was the right way. 
       For all the things she said to us as we were growing up, we swore we would never say those things to our children.  How did you feel the first day you heard your Mother's voice coming out of your mouth? 
       Moments and memories are all we have in this life.  Use the moments wisely and the memories will be what get us through. 
       Give your Mom a big, 'I Love You' along with whatever gift you give her.  It will mean more than you know."
Lu Stafford

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Remembering Granny Pearl Ireland

Granny Pearl Ireland

On January 30, 2004, our cousin, Jim (Mike) Meetze, shared in love some of his thoughts about Grandmother Pearl Ireland.

* * * 

It has been ten years since my grandmother died?  She raised me until age 6 when my Mom married my step-dad...

I think it was a Saturday, I was out of food as usual ... a by-product of my Friday nights downtown.  I was starving.  As I rambled through the cabinets trying to piece together something that might pass for a traditional American meal ... southern style ... I was 1 out.  Few choices could be found.

The reality of the situation engulfed me.  I opened a can of green peas, can of carrots, and can of onions and squash.  It was not a bad vegetarian plate, but no bread ... and I am a bread man.  I placed each on the stove, adjusted the burners as needed and sat on the sofa with a cup of hot joe ...  staring at a blank TV.

As the sounds and smells off the stove surfaced in the kitchen air, I realized I would sell everything I have, would ever have, for one of my grandmother's dinners and it did not have to be a Sunday dinner --- which looked more like a five star restaurant menu ...

Item:  I cried and cried and cried and ... for six hours I cried.

Well, you get the picture ... 10+ years and I still miss her.

My stomach reminded me I had not eaten the freshly picked can food items ... so I gathered myself, sat on the kitchen stool and slowly rejoined today, still thinking about the past and wondering what a beautiful thing it had been.

Loss ... it is your path ... spend what time you need to love again ... it will be worth the trip.

See you at the next sunrise ... Jim


The hurt, loneliness, and loss we feel when a loved one has passed away is a tremendous testimony to the relationship we had with them.  The ones we love live on in our hearts and memories, and will always be a part of who and what we are.  We are blessed to have had them in our lives.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Two Fantastic Moms!

May is the month that has Mother's Day, which is the time that we all stop to celebrate and remember Mothers.  It's a great thing to do - not just on Mother's Day, but any day!  So, for the month of May, rather than post my journaling about my caregiving of my Mom, I would like to share with you some writings about other Mothers in our families.  Not all of the posts I will share this month will be my writings; some will be writings shared with me by others.

Let me start this month of sharing with a writing by my Mother.  Mom was the guest speaker at the Mother / Daughter Banquet at the church in 2004.  This is a transcription of her devotion that night.    It is such a precious memory of her Mother and Grandmother, and I share it with love.

Grandmother Beatrice Coldiron Dorton

Shared by Audella Grubb Evans, Mother-Daughter Banquet, 2004:

I would like to talk about 2 Fantastic Moms.

First, my biological Mom, Mollie Elizabeth Dorton Grubb.  Mom was a wonderful, caring person.  She was always there for you or anyone that needed her.  When I was quite young, we lived in a small area - a Coal Community.  Everyone knew everyone.  She was the "visiting nurse" - whenever anyone was ill or having a baby they would send for Mom - 2 or 3 o'clock in the morning, it didn't matter, whether it was day or night!  Of course, it was much safer then, you could do that without fear.  My Mom certainly wasn't trained in the medical field, so this had to be a gift from God.  And she loved doing it.

Mom was a good listener and a conversationalist.  She could tell stories, things that actually happened, and act it out at the same time!  I think she would have made a good actress!  It was a ONE PERSON SHOW!

She accepted the Lord when she was in her 60's.  She would say she was afraid she could not live the life as a Christian person.  Her comment was, "I am not going to be a hypocrite".  She could tell you how a professing Christian should live!  We know we cannot live the Christian life without Christ, and we live it one day at a time.

Mom's word was the law.  You did what she said and didn't ask questions, like "Why?"

I'm grateful for her strengths and moral values she installed in me.  She gave me direction and kept me on the straight and narrow path.  Her home and family was the most important things in her life.  I thank God for her.  She was really a great Humanitarian in her day.  A Fantastic Mom.  She died July 9, 1992 - I miss her very much.  Our phone calls, our visits.  I could tell her what was on my heart and she would never betray my trust.

Secondly, my Spiritual Mom - who was my Grandmother, Beatrice Coldiron Dorton.  She was saved at the young age of 13 and received the Holy Ghost when very few in that area knew what it was.  She bore a lot of persecution, but it only made her stronger in her faith.  She loved reading her Bible - was a prayer warrior.  She was obedient to God's voice.  She would go to homes when God directed and pray for that person or family.  And they recovered from their illness!  I saw God use her in a mighty way.

Her conversation was always about the Bible, not shopping or working.  Although she kept a nice home and made her clothes, was a great cook, and loved for the Pastor or Evangelist and their families to visit her and she always served them a big dinner - everything made from scratch, too!

Grandmother Dorton worked in her garden (not a flower garden, maybe a few flowers, but it was a vegetable garden).  She owned this big jersey cow and always had fresh butter and milk.  A very busy woman - they had no car for transportation, so she would walk for miles to church and still had time to read, pray, and preach a lot of times.  And do visitation!

I never heard her say she was sick or frustrated about anything.  She seemed so happy all the time.  She lived every day with an unsaved husband, unsaved daughters, and unsaved grandchildren, but she would always say they would be saved.  Even though her family members were unsaved during most of her lifetime, they knew when things happened they could call and she would go to prayer and intercede to God to do a work.  She bridged the gap.  And one by one, her family members have come to know the Lord!

Everyone in the surrounding area and churches all knew Sister Dorton!  Grandmother's Christian walk set a wonderful example for me to live by - her talk, her walk, her life in everyday circumstances.  Was she a legalist?  NO!!!  She wanted to please God, and not bring a reproach on His name.  I would say that she was a Tradition, a Landmark, a Legacy for all of her family and those that knew her.

My prayer is that I can do the same before departing this life.

Grandmother Dorton died June 20, 1974.  I would love to be a able to just sit down and talk to her about the Bible, and to again hear her sing the songs of faith.  I miss her, too, but I will never forget the life lessons she taught me thru her day to day walk.

I have been blessed with such a rich heritage!  As a Mom, I would say that there is nothing more important than caring and being there for those you love.

My prayer is this:

God, be in my head, and in my understanding.

God, be in my eyes, and in my looking.

God, be in my heart, and in my thinking.

God, be at my end, and in my departing.

Thank you for letting me share my 2 Fantastic Moms with you!