Saturday, January 30, 2016

Finding Treasures

Last Monday, family members spent the entire day going through Pernella’s possessions and cleaning out her apartment.  She had lived in the same place for twenty years and had been a widow for the last fifteen of those years.  It was amazing how many things she had stored in drawers, boxes, closets, chests, and cabinets.  Pernella’s desire was for the siblings, nieces, and nephews to have whatever they wanted of her belongings and then for the rest to be given away.

I had the sweet task of going through multiple drawers and the cedar chest.  It was definitely a trip down memory lane.  Pernella must have saved every Christmas card, note, birthday card, photograph, wedding announcement and invitation she received from family.  She also saved school pictures of Larry and Terry from either late grade school or early junior high.  We were at a loss to figure out which was which, until we noticed that Larry’s name was on his packet.   Pernella had also saved Terry’s freshman photo student ID card for Sam Houston State University.  We also found a record of contribution to the church building fund, from the church she attended when she was away at school, even though she had very limited resources.

As a child and teenager, Pernella lived away from home so she could attend the Louisiana School for the Deaf in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.  She had saved their yearly publications from sixty plus years ago!  I also found a postcard that their mom had written to her while she was at the school.  It was written in pencil, still legible, and postmarked July 30, 1955.  That was one of the treasures I kept because it has Larry’s mother’s handwriting and signature on it.  As an adult, Pernella worked as a teacher’s aide at the School for the Deaf in Houston.

Two of the best treasures we found were Larry’s Dad and Mom’s Bibles.  For years, Larry has wondered where they were and wished he could have them.  Pa Pa’s Bible no longer has the front cover on it.  There is a saying that “A Bible that is falling apart is usually owned by a person who is not.”  That is definitely a true statement in this case.  His mom would read from the green Living Bible for family devotions. 

After moving the furniture and other items that people wanted over to Larry’s sister’s house, we had the joy of sharing food, appliances, dishes, clothes, and furniture with people who had blessed her during her time at the apartment as well as Christian ministries in Kingwood and Arlington.

Even though it was a long day of work, we enjoyed remembering, laughing, celebrating, being surprised, and treasuring memories of Pernella, as we packed up items.  It was easy to tell her favorite types of lotion, tissues, food, and other things, but Pernella’s Bible and family memorabilia showed what she treasured most.

And for the record boys, I have cleaned out five drawers at home this week with lots more to come.  May what I choose to keep or have on display be a true picture of where my heart and treasure are as well.

 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Luke 12:34

I rejoice in your laws like one who finds a great treasure.
Psalm 119:162 (Living Bible)

Indeed, if you call out for insight

    and cry aloud for understanding,
and if you look for it as for silver
    and search for it as for hidden treasure,
then you will understand the fear of the Lord
    and find the knowledge of God.
Proverbs 2:3-5

 He said to them, “Therefore every teacher of the law who has become a disciple in the kingdom of heaven is like the owner of a house who brings out of his storeroom new treasures as well as old.”
Matthew 13:52

My goal is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.
Colossians 2:2-3

Since you became alive again, so to speak, when Christ arose from the dead, now set your sights on the rich treasures and joys of heaven where he sits beside God in the place of honor and power.
Colossians 3:1 (Living Bible)

 Tell them to use their money to do good. They should be rich in good works and should give happily to those in need, always being ready to share with others whatever God has given them. By doing this they will be storing up real treasure for themselves in heaven—it is the only safe investment for eternity! And they will be living a fruitful Christian life down here as well.
I Timothy 6:18-19

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