Thought For The Day 07/02/14

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The Memories That Shape Us

Post 1207

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Ocean City, NJ

2012

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Memory is a child walking along a seashore.  You never can tell what small pebble it will pick up and store away among its treasured things. 

Pierce Harris

 Atlanta Journal

http://www.quotegarden.com/memory.html

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I am drawn to the memories of one of my old stomping grounds, the closer we get to the July 4th holiday which is huge here in my country. And as I recall those happy days, I can also vividly see and hear in my mind, my mother’s pronouncement that once the 4th arrives, summer is practically over. And while it really isn’t, I know exactly what she meant. She was telling us to cram all of the living we could into each day we were given because those days are fleeting! You see, before we know it, the carefree days of summer and childhood will disappear and before we know it, we will be saddled with the all too pressing tasks and responsibilities of adulthood! But while we can, we must make all the memories we can to carry us through all the days of our lives. And making memories was a must for the teenaged Mandy who spent summers at the shore!

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I spent every summer from the time I was in 7th grade at our house in Ocean City, NJ. I became a teenager there spending my days under the summer sun, and striving to become the brownest I could possibly become. Remember that bottle of baby oil with iodine in it? (Little did I know that I would come to pay for that decision some 40 years later which is why I tend to avoid the beach these days!) I would swim to the sandbar and delight in digging my toes deep into the sand in search of the huge clams with the thick shells that could be found by the dozens and I would spend hours sitting just at the ocean’s edge, toes lapping in the briny sea, and I would watch sand crabs burrow deep down through the grains of sand, at lightning speed. Those were the days when any 13-year-old could hop the jitney (a small bus that takes passengers on a regular route for a small fare) and ride the 30 odd blocks to get to the boardwalk with its Salt Water Taffy and Caramel Corn and Miniature Golf Courses and Movie Theaters. I spent the summers strolling the boardwalk with my first love as well as the one man whose love endures within my heart to this day. I introduced the toes of my babies to the nip of the Atlantic Ocean in May at the 50th Street Beach and watched as they delighted in trying to out-do each other in the sand castle building business. And we attended the little church a half-dozen blocks south of our house every Sunday where it was my job to play the piano for the Sunday School worship service. Even though it wasn’t in the vale, I always thought that the song, “The Little Brown Church In The Vale” might just have been written about that house of God we worshipped in every summer!

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Our memories are the flashbacks of the things that help to define the person we evolve to and become over the years. And as is God’s way, while we recall both the good and bad life experiences that helped to mold us, it is usually the happier days that remain just below the surface, ready and waiting for the time when we want or need to retrieve them. When we think about everything that made us who we are, it is those memories that are the things we cling to and draw from because they are us at our most perfectly happy moments. What a blessed gift to have been given this capacity by the Almighty!

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The Little Brown Church In The Vale

performed by the Statler Brothers

There’s a church in the valley by the wildwood
No lovelier spot in the dale
No place is so dear to my childhood
As the little brown church in the vale

(Oh, come, come, come, come)
Come to the church by the wildwood
Oh, come to the church in the vale
No spot is so dear to my childhood
As the little brown church in the vale

How sweet on a clear Sabbath morning
To listen to the clear ringing bells
Its tones so sweetly are calling
Oh come to the church in the vale

(Oh, come, come, come, come)
Come to the church by the wildwood
Oh, come to the church in the vale
No spot is so dear to my childhood
As the little brown church in the vale

There, close by the church in the valley
Lies one that I loved so well
She sleeps, sweetly sleeps, ‘neath the willow
Disturb not her rest in the vale

(Oh, come, come, come, come)
Come to the church by the wildwood
Oh, come to the church in the vale
No spot is so dear to my childhood
As the little brown church in the vale

There, close by the side of that loved one
‘Neath the tree where the wild flowers bloom
When farewell hymns shall be chanted
I shall rest by her side in the tomb

(Oh, come, come, come, come)
Come to the church by the wildwood
Oh, come to the church in the vale
No spot is so dear to my childhood
As the little brown church in the vale

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  See that you do not look down on one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in Heaven. 

Matthew 18:10 NIV

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Mandy 2014

Copyright © 2011-2014 “MandysPath”

 

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About Mandy Bruscella

Mandy's Story: As a Registered Professional Nurse with Certification in a number of specialties including home care, I was afforded the opportunity of working closely with various Social Service Agencies in NY and NJ. ~ A lifelong Christian, I was ordained as a Presbyterian deacon in 1993 and, after relocating to SC in 2000, elected to become ordained as a non-denominational minister. ~ I established "MandysPath" Ministry in 2011. "MandysPath" Ministry is a member of Pacific Life Church, El Sobrante, CA, network of ministries. ~ I direct an outreach ministry in an alternative setting, providing spiritual care to a congregation of more than 500 people from around the world via the Internet. ~ As part of this outreach, I write a daily faith based blog. In March, 2012 I was asked to become a board member of Heroes For Children which is a non-profit foundation, established to assists the Guardian ad Litem program of Horry County, SC. Guardians ad Litem are a group of court appointed advocates who represent the best interests of children in Family Court proceedings involving allegations of abuse or neglect. Working closely with these men and women who make a difference in the lives of children, I completed training and have been sworn in to serve as a Guardian ad Litem for the state of South Carolina . ~ I have been married since 1975 to a wonderful man, Daniel. I have a son Daniel and his wife Melissa who live in NYC. My daughter Sabrina and my grandson Landon live here in SC. ~ My father Harold continues to share his wisdom with me and is responsible for many of the ideas I write about!

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