Monday, July 18, 2011

Grace Imparted

"Time to go to the orthodontist."

Almost never have those words provoked eagerness among my children. But this week, Lee was ready to go. He even posed for this silly photo before we left:


Why the excitement? Because this visit was THE visit. And here's a pic I snapped in the car right after we left the office:


What I hadn't expected was that I would get teary-eyed as we bade farewell to Dr. Gilbert and his staff. But when Dr. Gilbert said, "Lee, it's been great. I feel like I watched you grow up," the tears welled up.

Dr. Gilbert's office has been a regular part of our life since 2002, back when Will was in sixth grade. Will's now a junior at Duke. Then Preston was Dr. Gilbert's patient, and now Preston will be a freshman at Carolina. Lee was the last, and he's been a patient of Dr. Gilbert's for six years. Dr. Gilbert and his staff have seen us through the rough up-and-down ride of middle school for three boys--boys who now all have great smiles. As I reflected on all those office visits, with Dr. Gilbert and his staff so kind and patient every single time, I realized how great a gift it's been to know our orthodontist and benefit from his expert and compassionate care. And that brought tears to my eyes!

What about you? Have received a gift from God's generous hand? Tell us about it! We'd love to hear about the grace imparted to you.

Imparting Grace

Remember, it doesn't have to be a "big" story. Maybe you've taken a photo of something that stirs your imagination. Perhaps you've received a special gift. Or maybe you've received a very ordinary gift, but you've been touched with the understanding that it's from the hand of God. Maybe you've been working on a project and everything has fallen neatly into place. Perhaps you finally finished something that's taken you a long time to accomplish. Or maybe you've just been given the eyes to see something that's been true for a long time. Whatever the grace imparted to you, I'd like to know about it.

If you'd like to join the party, please link to your specific post, not to your blog's home page. And please include a link back to this party, so that others might find their way here. I look forward to reading your stories of Grace Imparted!






**I'm linking to Encouraging Words Wednesday at Walking in His Grace

12 comments:

Paula said...

Congratulations to Lee for getting his braces off! His smile is beautiful!

Lisa@southern-days said...

What a great smile! I was just thinking the other day how many hours I've spent in the waiting room at the orthodontist, but it's all worth it.

Lisa

Amanda @ Serenity Now said...

How exciting for him!! Those changing of seasons are so bittersweet. :)

Nadir@StitchSense said...

How exciting! What a great "right of passage" & yet bittersweet for mom. I used to work for a Dr.'s office when I lived in FL for a while & I always hated seeing patients go, after a while you develop a sweet relationship/friendship with them which isn't as common these days too. :-)

Dawn said...

well, would you look at that smile! i know that your heart was smiling, too... we all want such good for our kids! as i read your post i was reminded that this year has been a bit the same for us. as we said goodbye to middle school and the teachers that we have known since laura pased on thru there... and saying g'bye to the piano teacher as we take a little break. strangers turned friends... i love it!

and i posted this this morning (well, it is morning here in vegas !) http://www.dawnsbeyondgrace.com/2011/07/grace-imparted.html
and i thoguht you might enjoy it in addition to what i actually linked up. love you dear friend!!!

Leslie said...

Hi, love!
My Miss A just got her bottom braces last week. Oh, joy...the pain, the tears, the misery.
And Miss A wasn't doing so well, either!
Lee is a handsome man. How old is he? I have TWO daughters to choose from, you know ;)
Just so happened that I have a fresh ;) post today for a special young lady in my life!
Our children are indeed an inheritance from the Lord!
Have a happy, productive, blessed, grace-filled day. Nay, week!!
XOXOXO

At The Picket Fence said...

Hi Richella! This is just such a great idea for a linky party!! I added 2 of our recent posts and I hope they "qualify" as stories of "grace imparted". :-) Getting those braces off is quite a milestone and definitely signify the end of an era. He looks pretty pleased to be done with them though! LOL! Thanks so much for hosting this!
Vanessa

Cathie said...

That's awesome. I expect to get teary-eyed at some point of every day. Really, it doesn't take much. So I think you are perfectly justified, given the situation.

Heathahlee said...

I always love to see kids' beautiful teeth after braces...it helps me know there's help for my child! HA!

I know that when it's time for Kiddo to see a "grown up" doctor, I will cry. All three of us absolutely adore his pediatrician. He's seen him since he was a newborn, and Kiddo actually WANTS to go to the doctor to see him. When I was little, I avoided going to the doctor at all cost! : )

Linda said...

Congratulations to Lee on the removal of his braces. I know that is a red letter day!

I know we do have grateful hearts for those who offer care to us in this life. And I think God does want us to appreciate their services.

This was a sweet post Richella.

Love, Linda

Anonymous said...

I don't know how to link in, but here is my contribution...

For the past three months, my life has been a series of “Grace Imparted.” When the destruction of my marriage was coupled with the destruction of my home, I had no choice but to take my children and get out. My first blessing was an extremely supportive family who came to help me while we lived in a hotel or who let my younger children stay with them. Then I encountered nothing but support from my older children’s school teachers, counselors and staff, as well as the doctors, nurses and staff at our pediatric practice. Every kind word, every prayer, every expression of support was God’s Grace Imparted to me and to my children.

When I had to work on making our house livable again – indeed, making it a home for our new family – our Heavenly Father blessed me yet again. The gentleman who managed the restoration was and is, to me, an angel walking on the face of this earth. He let me cry on his shoulder, coordinated everything that needed to be done and fought with my insurance company in vain to have the claim covered. Upon learning that the insurance would not cover anything, this angel called in personal favors, explained my situation to kind, listening ears, and helped me get my family back on track. To say that he personified Grace Imparted is an understatement. I shall forever be indebted to him and can only promise to pay it forward.

Another angel volunteered to help clean and determine what could/could not be salvaged. She hugged me as I cried and prayed with me. She shared her own story with me, and I drew strength from that, as well as her incredible faith in God. She shored me up so I did not crumble when my now estranged husband came to gather some of “his” belongings, pieces of an almost two decade relationship – most of my adult life. Again, God was revealing His Grace to me in my time of weakness and great need.

A dear friend of mine provided sanctuary for my older children and me so that they could maintain a routine of attending school, coming to a quiet, neat home to do their homework and share meals with their “aunt” and me; gradually, they realized that, although our life was now different, it would be better and we would have friends to support us, cheer us on and comfort us when necessary. For me, my dear friend’s sanctuary allowed me to grieve the loss of the life I knew while I tried to figure out how we would go on. As He did on several previous occasions, God put this wonderful person in my life to serve as my wise woman who would help me persevere.

Finally, the Lord blessed the children and me with their wonderful babysitter and our dear friend, to whom I am so, so grateful. When all of this occurred, I called her and could barely get out an intelligible word. She asked if I needed her to come over and I shook my head and somehow muttered, “Yes.” This gentle woman came in a flash and got the children out of the turmoil and chaos as quickly as possible. I handed her some cash and, not thinking clearly, asked her to do whatever she could think of with them. When she returned late that night, she took my hands and prayed, with me, for me, for my children and for my estranged husband. Many nights would follow when this angel would come to help me out and when she and I would pray together, not just for my own needs but for her needs as well. Grace Imparted indeed.

Although I am still raw and wounded, I am now strong enough to realize that the timing of this whole event was no coincidence. On Holy Saturday, I was brought to my knees; on Easter Sunday, I began, slowly, to rise, only by God’s Grace. He continues to bless my children and me; in my darkest hours, I have wept while the storm surrounded me and knew, in my heart, it was my Father weeping for me as well. I draw strength from His love for His imperfect daughter and her children and know that every day He is showing me His Grace; I just have to be open enough to recognize it.

Richella said...

Oh, my anonymous friend, thank you for sharing your story. Your life in the past few months has indeed been a story of Grace Imparted!

I am so grateful that you have been able to see how the Lord has blessed you even in the midst of such a difficult time. May He continue to bless you and your children and to assure you of His great love for you.

Again, thank you for telling your story!

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