These are “Tender” Times…

Dear Reader:

Elvis Pressley “hit it big” with his song Love Me Tender and the immortal first line….”Love me tender, love me sweet…never let me go.” To this day…whenever I hear the word “tender” in reference to anything…that first line of that familiar tune starts re-playing (automatically) in my memory.

Lately, for me, I would describe this time of incertitude as a “tender” time for all of us..It feels like a wound that needs extra attention and care. We all need to love each other “tenderly” and especially now be kind and  “tender” to ourselves…we are more vulnerable than we admit.

I think I am doing great and then a memory from a conversation or missed family benchmark celebration…even a holiday, undermines my steadfast resolution to “carry on.” (My first year not holding the grandchildren’s Easter Egg Hunt.)

Case in point-Mandy and I were talking on the phone about Easter yesterday and I told her I was texting a photo of the new garden Fairyland that I had just finished earlier in the day.

***Normally Eva Cate would come over one Saturday (before Easter) and spend it with me washing and cleaning the little fairies before finding them a new home in the garden.

After we would accomplish this rather dirty task…Eva Cate would get to pick out a new fairy for the upcoming year.

I got that far in the conversation… telling Mandy how much I missed that tradition (Eva Cate turns 10 later this month on April 27) this year…and my voice broke. I was so embarrassed…I didn’t realize that this annual pre-Easter ritual would ‘pull the rug out from under me’ emotionally.

Yes…it is a tender time for all of us…knowingly or unknowingly.

Saturday…the lonely day between the crucifixion and Jesus’s reappearance on Easter Sunday. Don’t you know that for the disciples…this was the “tenderest” of times? Each disciple was hurting and desperately needed a shoulder to lean on.

I can only imagine that their emotions were all over the place…guilt, anger, frustration, sadness, doubt, uncertainty, misgivings, fear, remorse…yet underneath this collage of emotional disarray…hope still burned…lightly, softly…yet strongly determined while accompanied by faith…weak, perhaps even dashed… but never absent.

(* Miss Violet (Dee) from church sent our shepherding group a reminder to set our iPhone/smart phone alarms for 3:16 p.m….then stop whatever we are doing (when the alarm goes off) to meditate on this moment when Jesus symbolically breathed his last…putting the breath of new life in all of us.) Great idea…based on scripture –John 3:16 

Like us during this tumultuous time… (spent praying for an end to the pandemic)…the disciples spent their time that Saturday praying for an end to the shattering experience of witnessing the death of their beloved friend and spiritual teacher…as well as faith that a new beginning was still possible. The promise of a new world.

…And isn’t that what we all want when we emerge from this pandemic? We don’t want to return to the ‘same old, same old’ way of doing things…but a new world where we can “all become as one.”  A world where love and compassion reign supreme over greed and self-interest.

So until tomorrow….Remember Jesus died so we can live….the best gift of all that lasts forever…and ever…and ever…so let’s bring JOY to the day…(in spite of temporary setbacks like weather or absence of some Easter family traditions)…We’ve been given our life back…joy should reside in our “being” and hearts every single day…as we thank God for His Son’s Sacrifice for us.

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

Let’s see what “Popping” in the Garden!

Colored leaves on the Confederate Jasmine and little yellow daisies smiling back at me….

I am fighting the good fight against those little pesky black grasshoppers that invade every year…they ate a portion of my “first” day lily this season…I spent most of my time yesterday spraying everything edible….they are like the locusts of old…can wipe out a garden if left alone.

I love this old Easter photo of Jake (6 months) and Lachlan ( 3 weeks) lying together. It looks like Jake is sharing his “expertise” on life with his little cousin Lachlan…who seems to be listening intently!

Then and now:

Smile!!! 🙂

 

About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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4 Responses to These are “Tender” Times…

  1. ambikasur says:

    Becky, I came across this article on Holy Saturday… Sharing it with you all…

    https://www.desiringgod.org/articles/the-day-jesus-stayed-dead

    Advance wishing you all a very Happy Easter… Our Jesus is alive forevermore..
    God bless

    Like

    • Becky Dingle says:

      Ambika…Since I have all the time in the world tomorrow…I will take time to slowly read your article you shared…how sweet! May God bless you and your precious little family…how lucky they are to have you in it! Happy Easter! Love, Becky

      Like

  2. Rachel Edwards says:

    Becky,

    You are so right. Suzy and I were talking yesterday and she has been through so many health issues lately and she is going to be ok, but she said that when she thought about us not coming home she got emotional. We have never missed a Christmas or Easter and maybe only one Thanksgiving for me (more for Fred b/c of football), so it will be very different. But was are all focusing on the real meaning and being thankful for our earthly and eternal lives. Love you sweet friend. And, remember “this too shall pass”

    Like

    • Becky Dingle says:

      It is hard…no matter how we slice it…sooner or later our emotions catch up with our “Act Maturely and Handle This” adult instilled behavior. We just want someone to hug and tell us that “Everything is going to be alright.” And it will…God will see to that!

      Like

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