Sweet Hours of Prayer

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As I write this, it is “pitch dark” out.  The world is quiet and the sky is starless.  I needed a bit more, than the usual time, to collect my thoughts, today, and so I rose before the “crack of dawn”.    On top of everything else, another storm is headed his way.  Far be it from me to complain at all, for we are likely to fair much better than Florida.  School will be dismissed early, just in case of flooded streets.                                                                                              f8e05d78276e2a10a591e6702eb6e7ed

On the way home, the wind had picked up.  Leaves filled the air, like an “autumn confetti”.  The country road, that runs by quiet pastures and fields,  is lined with the bright yellow golden rod and wild yellow daisies, just now.  There are also the floss flowers,  and so, how very lovely the drive was.  A light rain was falling from a sky the color of  pewter . 

Really, the forecast  did not call for  conditions that seemed too threatening.  We still had the most of our supplies from the last hurricane .  Of course, weather governs itself and sets its’ course, as it pleases.  Some of the worst circumstances, have caught us off guard.  I know now what a “downdraft storm” is.  They come on quick and will scare the most stalwart hearts.  When it is over, we  all come out shocked , with pale faces.  Several times, this has happened at the “rabbitpatch”.  It is something you do not forget.  The wind swoops in and tears up everything from porches to old trees, in a matter of minutes.  Things not nailed down are retrieved from  the edge of the fields and of course we lose power – yet a mile away, nothing is disturbed.  The straight line winds are a  mighty force that somehow manage to show up like an unexpected guest.  The only sign, I know of, is a dramatic and sudden drop in temperature.  

For many years, a small horse, named “Comanche” was pastured right across the road.  He was a beautiful pinto and carried himself like a prince.  I learned early on to watch him, if I had any doubts about weather.   He would stop grazing and become very alert, when all seemed well.  Next, he would snort and finally break into a gallop, kicking his heels ever so often.  That is when I would take shelter and collect things prone to flying away.  I saw this on many occasions . . .and Comanche was never wrong.                                                                                                                                  59686f8177c0b8206abeedac11d42008

Thankfully, the afternoon passed with a few showers and mild but gusty winds.  A few sycamores lost branches small enough, that I could gather them, easily.  More will fall tonight, as the storm is expected to pick up.  The evening skies looked wicked, as if they were giving fair warning.

I packed two more boxes.  I am expecting the closing of the sale, to happen within six weeks, or before.  It is odd, but being in this temporary state has become familiar, almost.  So many things have transpired in the last month.  Brynn was born, a hurricane descended, and Daddy has  some health concerns.  I have found a dear little cottage on a tree lined street and am in the process of buying it. For now, I do not feel I can say much more.  There remains a lot of mystery, yet to be  determined. 

Another odd thing, with so many things out of control, we are forced to relinquish whatever power, we may think we have.  I am always amused that humans think they have so much say in everything.  How exhausting it is. to bear such a burden. It is true, that we have some influence, and we ought to consider that as we go along.  We are certainly accountable for how we conduct ourselves.  Our actions  do have an impact, usually. . .but often, we do what we can and really must just hope for the best.  While this is the undoing of some folks, it has actually been very liberating for me.    I think praying is the most powerful thing we  can do.  I needn’t lose sleep or imagine dire prospects, but  instead can trust the outcome.  There is an old hymn, we sang many Sundays at church, when I was a child, and the words ring as true now,as they did then . . . “Sweet Hour of Prayer”. I knew all of the hymns by heart, as a child -and they pop  up now and  then as needed, it seems.  I can hear the congregation in the little church – and the piano, Miss Arahbelle played for a half century.  . .  and my mamas’ clear soprano, clear and at perfect pitch  – even so, I was so very bored at church, as a child. Besides , my dresses were itchy and the cute patent leathers were hard and pinched.  The night before, we slept in rollers, for Mama never gave up the notion of me having curls, though it did not work  for me as it did my sister.   Long prayers made me want to cry  -and I knew which elder prayed the longest.   I tried so hard to stay focused during prayers, for I so wanted to be good, but often I was thinking about riding my pony when I got home, or what Grandmama was cooking.  . . I am glad for it now, after all.                                                   dc4bbd3e641240aad1031a36bd00e98c

 

By early evening, the wind came.  It blew steadily with a slight hint of malice.  We lost power, so Christian and I scrambled to the pantry to find the candles and flashlights.  I must admit, I was not expecting this.  Thankfully, we had  at least eaten.  The air was chilly and I felt like , at long last October had arrived – with a lot of fanfare.  It was “as dark as sin” outside and so we could only wonder what  all  the bumping and crashing sounds meant.  We went to bed earlier than usual, under the circumstances, sure the power would come on shortly, jolting us from our sleep.

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The power did not come back on.  It was still out when I woke before the first light.  As soon as I could see, I went out to survey the territory.  The place was littered with branches and I needed a jacket!  I made several piles of debris.  Then I heard my neighbor calling her dog and realised, he was missing.  We looked a good while, but there wasn’t a trace of him.  I am hoping he shows back up, shortly.  It is mid morning now, and the power has not been restored.  I have regretted not stockpiling water, several times, already.

The day is as lovely as has ever been.  The sky is a crystal clear blue.  The sun is bright and makes cheerful patterns on the grass, that are ever changing due to the light wind, that now stirs the oak branches playfully.  The neighborhood is mostly quiet.  I have heard that  there is widespread power outage  and I crane my ear, to hear the joyful arrival of the linemen.   So far, I only hear an occasional dog in the distance.  

I will be leaving at some point, for Elizabeth City.  I have not seen my grandchildren in two weeks, and I miss them.  I hope to get some use of the double stroller, as the forecast is so friendly for such things.  Little Brynn is already a month old, as of yesterday and Lyla refuses to line up from the playground, at preschool, as of recently.  I am sure that Brynn has grown and that Lyla has a perfectly sound explanation, for her behavior . . .and it couldn’t hurt to listen.

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Uncle Tres and Brynn

 

 

 

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25 thoughts on “Sweet Hours of Prayer

  1. Praying that this is the last of the storms you have to endure at the Rabbit Patch. I’m excited to hear about your new cottage and will keep you in my prayers for a smooth transition to your new home. Hugs❤️🙏🏻❤️

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  2. My daughter and her husband live in Chapel Hill, and they lost their power yesterday. As far as I know, it hasn’t come back on yet. Hope yours comes back soon, and I’m glad no serious damage was done to your house and yard.

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  3. I hope your power returns soon as well as the neighbor’s dog. Congratulations on the new cottage. I’m sure you are feeling so many emotions right now with the sale of the Rabbit Path. Sending you, and yours love and prayers!

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  4. I keep a case of bottled water frozen in the upright freezer in the back room.
    Surprisingly (after I tested it) the water will not burst the bottles or caps.
    My main use for this is camping. A case of frozen bottled water is enough ice to cool a cooler for three days. Also, as we camp, we remove bottles to thaw, for drinking.
    In an ice chest, the bottles work as ice: but they don’t leave pools of water as they thaw!

    I’d wish you best of fortunes during these tumultuous times, but it shines upon you without my beckoning.

    All my best,

    Paz

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  5. How exciting that you will shortly have news for us about a dear little cottage!!!

    Our little lashing from Hurricane Michael was much less than yours. I hope everything is already back to normal.

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  6. Oh I’m so releaved to hear of a new cottage. Being homeless isn’t much fun and I do hope there is a fence to keep Cash at home until he learns the new neighborhood.
    This new storm is one for the books. I just read a report that it wasn’t what we have been told. Kinda scary. But you and yours are safe and sound. Prayers do help and we do have an awesome God in control.
    Can’t wait to hear more about the new rabbit patch. Be sure to email me an address. Love you.

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  7.   ‘I think praying is the most powerful thing we  can do.  ‘

    It’s the best !!!

    I also like the bit when you remember as a child the elders with the longest prayers…. brought a smile to my face…

    Hope you and family are all well.

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  8. Michele – there’s the saying ‘why worry when you can pray?’ Especially a sweet hour of prayer (I, too, remember that precious hymn.) Our power returned late last night – hope yours comes back on soon! (As we comtimie to pray for the people in FL & NC who have lost so much!!) 💨🙏☀️🙏💨

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  9. I hope your lineman showed up quickly. We woke up to snow this morning and our electric quite for only a few hours. Turned out tree branches heavy with wet snow were laying on the lines.
    I loved reading about your going to church as a child….your scratchy dresses and curlers. My mom always made our dresses. She dressed all three of us girls alike. I think the fabric was cheaper if she bought more yards. It was always awful if she forgot to take a pin out of the hem and you sat on it!
    Praying for safety during this crazy weather season!

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    1. oh gosh-we dressed alike to in handmade dresses-I remember those awful pins!! snow??? Here we are just able to wear a sweater in the evening! Our leaves have not even started turning! I hope you re better-I think of you and continue to pray. love Michele and thank you!!

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  10. I’m glad to hear that the sale of your house will be closed in six weeks. You took your time to pack and are prepared for this moment. Happy to hear that you found a cottage that you like and planning on buying it. It’s so nice to have this done before you retired and while you have the energy to do it. Brynn is so darling. Yes, we all understand Lyla’s feeling. She appreciates your listening. 🙂

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