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Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Flowers for Ruthie

Before yesterday I had never heard of Ruthie.



I didn't know she was a fellow blogger.



I didn't know we shared the same faith.



I didn't know that leaving a jar of garden flowers
on a hurting friend's porch was her favorite pastime.


Photo "Blue Chair" by Hello-Julie Some Rights Reserved

About the flowers
Ruthie writes,

 "I love making a friend feel better. And if I analyze that,
I think it’s because giving of oneself to another
enables us to feel closer to Jesus.  
If He had a mason jar,
some ribbon and a few roses,
He would have placed them on his friends’ doorsteps too. 

It’s sharing love,

it’s sharing kindness. 

It’s sharing Jesus."


Photo "Jar of Flowers" by TheDaddy_Chazz Some Rights Reserved


Simple.


Matthew 22:37-39


First love God.
Photo "Flowers vs Cross" by Isaacpm Some Rights Reserved


Then love others.

Photo" I Love You" by Flo's shots 4 me Some Rights Reserved

I read Jennifer Grey's blog
The Old Painted Cottage
yesterday.

She wrote a beautiful memorial to her friend
who died in December
after a

long

hard

battle with cancer.

Photo "Cross" by Lisa Widerberg Some Rights Reserved


Her friend named
Ruthie.

Young,

beautiful

wife

and

mother of two children.




Photo "Drop of  Flowers" by Audrey Some Rights Reserved

Ruthie wrote two blogs:


and




Photo "Flower and Keyboard" by Ashleigh290 Some Rights Reserved


I've been reading through them.

Photo "Garden Bouquet" by hello-julie Some Rights Reserved

She launched "Ruthie's Gift" on May 21, 2010.

Explaining the name of the blog, she writes:

"I've always seen my cancer as a gift.  
I know it sounds crazy, but so very true.  
This gift, entered as an intruder into my body, 
but profoundly touched my soul.  
It didn't come wrapped 
in a box with a pretty bow.  
Rather, it came in the form of fear 
that made me reach out to God
 like I've never done before.  
The real gift is the peace and strength He's provided 
me on this journey.  
I hope the gift to you is knowing He will 
do the same for you on yours."

Photo "Bag with Rose" by lifelikeapps Some Rights Reserved


With so much wisdom, sensitivity and humor Ruthie
 writes compelling posts about her

journey

through cancer

with God by her side.

Photo "Yellow is the Colour" by Freddie Phillips Some Rights Reserved

She writes a lot on the topic of serving God with
the gifts we're given.

Photo by Hello-Julie Some Rights Reserved


The Christian Girl's Cottage blog
followed in December.

It focuses on her home,
and how she intertwined her faith
with a love for home decorating.

In one post she mentioned how having
her home featured at Jennifer's
Cottage of the Month
brought people to Ruthie's blog
where they discovered she had cancer.

That in turn opened doors
for her to minister to hurting women,
and to receive their ministry in return.

Photo "With Her Own Two Hands" by Robert S. Donovan 
Some Rights Reserved



The timing of my finding Ruthie is so amazing.

So God.

Lately I've been wrestling with my purpose
for publishing A Joyful Cottage.

Photo "Sad Flowers (revisited)" by Jimmy Brown Some Rights Reserved


I mean, how does my writing a blog
about cottages
serve God?

It seems so. . .

dare I say it?

Frivilous.

Shouldn't I be writing something. . .

more meaningful?

Photo "Skyward" by Terren in Virginia Some Rights Reserved


Then I read Ruthie's words.

"God can use anything, 
even the love of a home,
to unite hearts."


Photo "Table" by Meg Lessard Some Rights Reserved

I read that line again.

Slowly.

Photo "Soft Landing" by Audrey Some Rights Reserved

"God can use 

anything, 

even the love of a home,

to unite hearts."




Even the love of cottages, Lord?


"Yes," He answered.

"Even that."




Thank You,

Lord,

for showing me this.

And thank You, too, for leading me to Ruthie's blogs.

Please tell her "hello" for me.

And -- if you don't mind --

tell her I'm looking forward to

meeting her 

one day.


Photo "Snowball Virbunum" by hello-julie Some Rights Reserved

18 comments:

  1. I have tears in my eyes, Nancy. What a lovely tribute you have written to an obviously lovely soul. I often grapple with the same kind of questions with regard to my own blog, then every now and again, I receive a comment from someone who says that they have been touched in some profound way by my words. Those comments literally take my breath away, the fact that my words could actually help someone seems almost unfathomable to me...until...until I read a post like yours and remember that I am touched almost every day by the words of bloggers, home bloggers. My love for pretty cottages led me to you, it led you to Ruthie, it allowed her to share her story, her strength and now her legacy.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, Kim. I was just telling my husband recently that the best thing about blogging in the "home" category is that it's a very uplifting community. The blogs I read celebrate life in all its many facets: home, family, friends, faith, creativity, and more. It's just a very safe place to be. I'm grateful to all the beautiful, talented and loving women who inspired me to begin blogging, and who encourage me every day to continue. xx

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  2. Beautiful, tender, lovely Nancy . . .

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  3. What a beautiful post Nancy. I'm going to go read some of Ruthie's posts.

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    1. Thank you, Barb. If you go to Ruthie's blog, you may want to have a box of tissues at hand.

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  4. Nancy, thank you for your beautiful and encouraging post. I could relate to Ruthie. You have a true gift for writing. Love you!

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    Replies
    1. It was my pleasure to share this. I'm glad you felt encouraged by it, Sue. Thanks for your sweet words. Love you, too.

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  5. Beautiful post, Nancy! Thanks so much for sharing it with us at our All Things Thursday Blog Hop. You have a gift for words...keep letting your Light shine bright before all men! I'm anxious to read some of Ruthie's posts as well. Have a wonderful week!
    Blessings,
    Nici

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for leaving such a sweet and encouraging comment, Nici. I appreciate it. Have a great weekend. :)

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  6. A beautiful post that touched my heart in a way you would not imagine..I lost my best friend that I have known for over 50 years several months ago…her name was Ruthie…she loved the Lord and now she is with him..I am sure both Ruthies are together sharing the same sentiments of life.

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    Replies
    1. You're so right, Shirley. All week I've been thinking how our faith reaches far beyond our last breath on earth. If we faithfully live it out as both Ruthies did, then it goes on and on. It's never ending. Thanks for taking the time to visit and share your thoughts. xx Nancy

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  7. Beautiful, insightful, written deeply from the heart. Some lives touch us as they pass on by. Yet they touch us just the same.
    Brenda

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Brenda, for your kind words. Ruthie has had a profound impact on me. Blessings, Nancy

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  8. Beautiful tribute to a beautiful heart! You've shown me different ways I can reach out to love others. Thank you, Nancy!

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    Replies
    1. I'm so glad what I shared encouraged you, Maryleigh. I believe always this is God's intent. He gently teaches us so that we may then pass along what we have learned to encourage others in their own walk with Him. God bless.

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  9. Oh my Nancy, Ruthie was a wise and Godly woman! I too think that God will use anything. Each of us ever so humble as we might be can be an instrument in his hands. Rutie knew that ever so well! Thanks for sharing this touching post with SYC.
    hugs,
    Jann

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    Replies
    1. My pleasure, Jann. Thank you for taking the time to visit and leave your encouraging message. As always, your words are full of love. xx

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Your comments bring me joy! Thanks for stopping by.