Grandma Lily

Grandma Lily was perfect for all 6 of us PNG Howards.

She always opened her home and welcomed us with special touches. For son Reggie, the special touch was always the biggest available box of Wheat Chex. For daughter-in-law Susan, it was French Vanilla Creamer in the fridge.

For the kids, starting with Jodie, it was brand new pajamas, socks and so much more. 

When 3-year-old Icey was coming, she asked him over the phone, “what do you want when you get here?” His immediate answer was, “Grandma, I want a pet giraffe.” And rather than say, “that’s impossible” (like us parents did), [1] she sewed up the most beautiful stuffed giraffe a three-year-old could ever ask for. It was waiting on Isaiah’s bed when we arrived.

While we were away year-after-year across the Pacific Ocean, she often sent her love through personalized care packages. Oreo cookies (every new type that became available), M&M’s, Kool-Aid, and too much more to list here. One time she asked 3-year-old JJ, “what would you like me to send you?” he quickly answered, “Grandma, I want some snow.” And, rather than say, “that’s impossible” (like us parents did), she said “Ok, I will send you some snow.”[2] This brilliant grandma found a hand-cranked “snow cone” maker at the local store and sent it in the next care package. With ice cubes and a bit of cranking, JJ got his snow!

When Hada came the first time, grandma wrapped her arms around her and said, Welcome to the family, you are my 14th grandchild. You are most special.”

We miss mom/grandma so much, but our hearts and minds are full of precious, special memories that we wouldn’t trade for anything.

She is fully alive now; with her Living Savior, her parents, grandparents, uncles, aunties, big brother, “bestie” Russ, and so many precious friends; singing, dancing, praising, and thanking their/our Glorious Father, our/their Lived-Died-Rose-again Savior, and myriads of saints and angels.


[1] This kid believed his grandma 100%, and we were sure he would be heart broken when he saw that grandma could not get him a pet giraffe.

[2] We hoped JJ would simply forget about this impossible promise, but…

Let’s Apprehend Hope

Words do silly things:

The noun “Apprehension” is defined as “a fear or anxiety about something.”

The verb “to Apprehend” is defined as “to take hold of,” “to come into possession of.”

BUT, no one wants to apprehend [come into possession of] apprehension [fear and anxiety]!

We want to shed it, overcome it, to remove the anxieties and fears that haunt us. To be rid of it and live on a higher plane.  We would love to throw all our anxieties into a bottomless pit and banish them forever.

How can this be done?

This past year has created all sorts of apprehension among us humans in all stages and walks of life. The pandemic, the economy, shutdowns, elections, sickness, and loss of life, have assaulted our hearts with fears, doubts, insecurities – apprehensions.

To apprehend is to face the causes of apprehension and willfully overcome them.  

We have been hurt physically, mentally, emotionally, economically, relationally, and spiritually. Some of us may have considered dropping out permanently. Life deals tough blows. But here we are. Still moving forward. Still looking for light, relief, peace, belonging and joy.

Hope requires a decision (actually, repeated decisions), but willpower alone is not enough. We need help from outside ourselves. We can receive this help from trusted friends, relatives, counselors, and most of all, our Loving Father, the Royal Son, and the Resident Advocate (Eph. 1:3-14).

God wants to relate with us honestly, with integrity. Look at how David approached Him. “Be gracious to me, Adonai, because I am withering away; heal me, Adonai, because my bones are shaking…I am worn out with groaning; all night I drench my bed with tears…Adonai has heard the sound of my weeping, Adonai has heard my pleading, Adonai will accept my prayer.” Psa. 6:2,6,8,9 (Complete Jewish Bible). Wherever we find ourselves, be genuine with God.

A most incredible truth in the universe is that God “hearts” each one of us.

Let us encourage one another in this journey; assist each other along the way. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Pride gets us nowhere. It is up to us as individuals, families, communities, churches, etc. to turn the noun into the verb, for ourselves and for others.

More will be written about this in the next two weeks. Hope is not a flimsy feeling; Biblical hope is a most powerful, transformational force.

The first follow-up post is here: https://heardivinewords.com/2020/12/24/deity-hearts-you-me-everyone/

Let’s overcome apprehension by fully apprehending hope!

Enjoy your free digital book

Death of family is the hardest thing we face. Pastor Darius lost his beloved wife after a long battle with cancer. But worse than this, he and his only daughter were in a road accident. He survived, but his daughter died in his arms. The pictures on the cover are of the actual event.

Huge questions raised their voices. “What are you doing, Lord?” “Where were you when I needed you?” “Why didn’t you take me and let Martina live out her future?” “Could I ever trust you again, Lord?”

Groping for God is Pastor Darius’ heart-searching, honest account of the deep waters of doubt that he went through, and the things that helped bring him through the despair and out the other side. You will not forget this story, and Pastor’s advice is powerful.

This book is being offered to you free of charge. Click on the link below, and it will take you to an online store. In the box that says Code, enter the word “Free”. Use the code and you will receive a free digital copy of the book that is yours to keep. You can check out as a Guest with just a name and email address. Download your new book on any phone, tablet or computer.

Happy Reading! And pass it on!

About Relationships

Far more than rules and doctrines, The Bible is especially about RELATIONSHIPS. Our creator wants us basking in fulfilling, uplifting relationships!

“This is the life we have seen and heard. We are reporting about it to you also so that you, too, can have relationship with us. Our relationship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. We are writing this so that we can be completely filled with joy.” 1 John 1:3-4 GWN