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Posts Tagged ‘#littlewomen’

I fondly remember the bell being rung at the church I attended as I was growing up.

Each Sunday morning at a specified time, someone would knock at the door of my Sunday School class. When the door was opened an apology for interrupting would be whispered as the man would walk toward the spot where the bell was rung.

bong, bong, bong …

I do not remember how many times it was rung, just how it’s sound reverberated in my heart.

Church bells are not rung in cities, towns or villages as they once were. Alerts to the time of day, time to worship, have been replaced by watches, clocks, phones.

Yet, when I hear church bells (the real ones, that require a human ‘ringer’) today they take me back to that Sunday School class, as though the lessons learned were burned into my heart with each strike of the clapper on the inside of the bell. Lessons about submitting our life to Christ, loving one another, caring for others, honesty, commitment.

Those bell ringing memories hold another lesson …

Worship the Lord! Sing praises to Him.

That lesson reverberates in my mind in a song I remember, from when our kids were younger and we would be curled up on the sofa, with blankets and popcorn, lights out, to watch Little Women. Somehow this song, this carol written over 200 years ago, has stuck with me as one that herald’s the season of advent … with great and simple joy.

Ding dong, merrily on high
In heaven the bells are ringing
Ding dong, verily the sky
Is riven with angel singing
Ding dong, dong, ding dong, dong, ding dong, dong
(Gloria, Hosanna in excelsis)
Ding dong, dong, ding dong, dong, ding dong, dong
(Gloria, Hosanna in excelsis)
E’en so here below, below
Let steeple bells be swungen
And io, io, io
By priest and people sungen
Gloria, Hosanna in excelsis
Ding dong, dong, ding dong, dong, ding dong, dong
(Gloria, Hosanna in excelsis)
Pray you, dutifully prime
Your matin chime, ye ringers
May you beautifully rime
Your eve time song, ye singers
Gloria, Hosanna in excelsis
Ding dong, dong, ding dong, dong, ding dong, dong
(Gloria, Hosanna in excelsis)
GloriaDing dong, dong, ding dong, dong, ding dong, dong
(Hosanna in excelsis)
Ding dong, dong, ding dong, dong, ding dong, dong
(Gloria, Hosanna in excelsis)
Ding dong, dong, ding dong, dong, ding dong, dong
(Gloria, Hosanna in excelsis)

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It had been a  L  O  N  G ,  non-stop, action-filled Monday, and I was just finishing a task and looking forward to even half an hour of reading my new book.

“Mom, can you help with my lines?”

I turned around to see my son entering the room, with his script, for the school play, stretched out towards me.

but I really wanted to have down time

he needs me

but I was so tired

this is his last school play

but my cup was almost dry

he graduates high school in June

I pause …

And so, for the next half hour, I read for Jo, Laurie and Mrs. March, as teenage son read the lines of the patriarch of the March family.

In less than six months, he (our youngest) will complete high school.

In less than nine months he plans to go to college.

This is the ending of a season, an era, and it causes me to pause.

As the months have been creeping by, I am noticing that I pause, often. I am asked for a drive to camp (an hour away), to watch a shared TV show, to wake him at an earlier hour, to study for a test, to go through lines for the school play, and I pause …

In that pause I can choose to say yes, or not now. But with each day that slips by, I am more aware that if not now, when?

We all have causes to pause. When we hear of the family whose child died in a house fire, we pause. When a co-worker’s spouse died after she left for work, we pause. When a friend is battling cancer, we pause. When a loved one’s career takes them far away, we pause.

And so yes is more often my, our, response, 

because we realize that soon the requests will be few, rare, gone forever.

Now is the time to pause.

 

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