Notes from Jan

Mangoes and Other Marvels

September 7, 2017

Stood at the counter, slicing a mango for dessert.

Delicious, exotic fruit.

Growing up we enjoyed the fruits and vegetables in season, which usually meant out of our garden, a tree in our yard or a generous farmer from our church.  Never heard of an avocado, kiwi, mango, papaya or ugli fruit.

By summer’s end, Mama and I’d  captured and canned whatever our family hadn’t eaten or given away.  Summertime, for me, felt more like Ball jars, than ballgames. I hated canning but loved the results.  Kind of like exercise.  By this time of year, the cellar or pantry shelves showcased jars of  canned green beans, tomatoes, cherries, pickles (dill and sweet,) peaches, pears and more. Mama’s pride but proof to me that someday I just might amount to something. There’d been some debate.

One summer in DeKalb, Illinois,  desperate to avoid another hot, steamy morning of canning, I pretended I’d caught polio overnight. It was 1950. Polio meant I  had to stay in bed. My Mama, a nurse and wiser than I’d hoped, remained calm, despite my alarming self-diagnosis.  She said,”Oh, I’m so sorry to hear this but don’t be discouraged.(I wasn’t!)  I have several shots that can help you recover quickly.”  I hated shots worse than canning so jumped out of bed and declared myself “a Miracle!”

Now, like the years of my life, the seasons meld together, delivering the usual and the unexpected, leaving less to anticipate of the seasons to come.

And yet, I do.



Believe, “the best is yet to be.”

In the Message  II Corinthians 5 reminds me,”He puts a little of heaven in our hearts so that we’ll never settle for less.”

A mango today, a marvel just around the bend or on a pantry shelf.




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  • Reply wendy lane September 7, 2017 at 2:55 pm

    Haha! Fabulous story! But one thing you spoke was truth – you ARE a miracle! And God has used you to instill hope in many that they, too, will see His miracles.

  • Reply Dale Lefever September 7, 2017 at 6:09 pm

    Thanks Jan. In each season of life there are joys and sorrows. If we focus on the sorrows we miss the joys now and in the next season. You are increasing my understanding of how each day is a gift.

    Blessings dear friend, Dale

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