When I was a little girl, one of my favorite places to be was at my grandparent’s house. It was the place I felt most peaceful and full of joy. Thinking back, I get all warm and fuzzy. I can still picture their home from the inside out. The white hammock Papa nestled between two towering trees in the front yard. The front porch swing where Mema and Papa would sit with us on cool days and sway back and forth. The comfy, light blue sofa set covered in a floral pattern and Papa’s rocking chair.
To this day, I have their old phone number memorized. Who memorizes numbers anymore?! Sadly, I don’t. Back then, we only had home phones and pay phones, so you either memorized numbers or looked them up in the phone book! Do they still make the yellow pages anymore? Anyone else hearing Maroon 5’s pay phone song in your head right about now?! Yep, all of my change must have been spent on my grandparents.
I’m so thankful and cherish the time I got to spend with them both. Going to church was normal on Sundays when you were with them. My grandma always tucked me in and prayed with me at night. There is something so special about grandparents.
Wild blackberries & honeysuckles grew along their fences outside. If you were a kid in the 80’s, you know when the sun was out, you were out. We only came inside for food, water, and bathroom breaks. I loved to pick the blackberries and eat them one by one. I would also walk along the fence line and pick the honeysuckles, pull out the little stem, and suck on the drop of nectar. If you’ve never tried it, you should!
As I got older, I realized the main reason I loved being at my grandparents so much.
It was totally and completely filled with God’s presence.
It wasn’t because they had 4,236 different kinds of cereal, home cooked southern food, a playroom with a barbie house or lots of books.
They were simply filled with God’s love and grace.
Even when I was a messy child, dropped crumbs everywhere when I ate, and ruffled my grandpa’s feathers, they always showed me love and grace. I believe it poured over onto everyone that entered their home.
“You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” – Psalm 16:11
This verse resonates with me and reminds me that in His presence is where we find true and lasting joy. It’s not always easy to be joyful and life sure throws some curve balls, but at the end of the day that’s where my joy comes from.
Blackberry & Honeysuckle isn’t just about blackberries & honeysuckles. I chose the name as a reminder of that truth. A reminder of His presence. All along, He has been with us, beside us, and all around us.
In His presence there IS fullness of joy.
I’d love to hear… did you have any special places or people growing up that reminded you of God’s goodness?