It started off by my choosing to torture myself by driving instead of taking the ferry. They all live on Long Island and though I know traffic can be a bear I figured heading there early would make a difference.
There are many people on Long Island. All those people have vehicles, which they use constantly! If it were a floating island, it would sink!
The visit was a full one, to say the least.
First there was a birthday dinner for my sister, Lilly at a very noisy restaurant. Is there any other kind on the Island?
Saturday found me at a baby shower for one of Sara's closest friends, which took the whole afternoon.
That was followed by a visit to Sara's grave. I myself do not feel the need to visit graves, but I certainly didn't want to upset my sisters, especially Chrissy, by not joining them.
The night found me at a biker bar & grill. I had promised that I would attend one of Lilly's boyfriend's gigs.
This was it.
On Sunday Lilly and I had time to just sit and visit. It was evident that Papa had set this time aside for just the two of us. We shared our hearts, which filled my heart with joy.
Then it was on to a short visit with Chrissy. We talked as we floated in her pool. Refreshing! The two of us have not had much time to connect as of late. I was very glad for time to catch up.
My day was capped off by sharing a meal with my Jon and girlfriend. We were celebrating his birthday. The man is working seven days a week, so I was very grateful for the visit, though brief.
No surprise - I took the ferry home. It too was jam-packed and I am very glad that I had a reservation! Jon had asked why I couldn't take the last ferry so we would have more time together. I had to explain to him that I am getting a little (just a little!) older and get tired more easily. I cannot do all that I use to be able to do. If I had stayed longer, there would have been a good chance that his momma would not have made it safely home.
Once my car and I were safely on board, it was my intention to check in and then go back to my car and take a nap.
Papa had other ideas.
I found myself on the upper outside deck.
I stood against the railing and cleared my mind while I took in the night sky. My God filled me with peace.
I thought through my visit and all the struggles and burdens that had been revealed to me. Some had been shared and some were unacknowledged by the individuals.
I examined each wondering how I would view them if I wasn't a follower of the Living God.
Without my God I would be burdened without knowing what the answer could be.
Because I have Papa I can bring it all to Him and know that not only does He know the answer to each concern, but He is the answer!
In time my mind and heart were clear and I could simply take in the beauty of the night.
With this came an overwhelming sense of Papa's presence.
Just what my loved ones need.
I became aware of those around me on the ship.
Four or five boys around the age of ten years old zigged and zagged through the rows, dodging and ducking one another. It was difficult to be sure of the count as they seemed to be everywhere at once!
There were a number of parents carrying babies, others chasing toddlers or holding their little chubby hands.
Some people had a leash in hand, instead of or, in addition to little ones.
Many sat on the benches either talking to one another, into their phones or staring at the phone's screen.
With this awareness my sense of Papa's Presence was not diminished. Instead I sensed Him watching over each individual, sometimes in delight and sometimes with concern.
I wanted to put my finger to my lips and shush everyone. I wanted to tell them to stop for a moment and be still. I longed for each person to become aware of Papa's Presence right in the midst of their lives.
It was a holy moment for me and I wished all to recognize it as such and savor it.
The thought came that every moment is a holy moment, as He is present in each and every moment.
If we would stop and take in this truth, then we would enter into our lives with a fresh perspective which would give us a solemn joy.
How glad I am that I did not make it back to my car for that nap! I was more refreshed by His Presence than sleep could have ever given to me.
"I will extol Thee, my God, O King; and I will bless Thy Name forever and ever. Every day I will bless Thee, and I will praise Thy Name forever and ever. Great is the LORD, and highly to be praised; and His greatness is unsearchable. One generation shall praise Thy works to another, and shall declare Thy mighty acts. On the glorious splendor of Thy majesty, and on Thy wonderful works, I will meditate. And men shall speak of the power of Thine awesome acts; and I will tell of Thy greatness. They shall eagerly utter the memory of Thine abundant goodness, and shall shout joyfully of Thy righteousness." Psalm One Hundred Forty-five, verses One through Seven.