To A Wild Rose: Straight from the Heart of Renee

As the series continues I would like you to meet my friend Renee. It’s truly a joy to work and walk beside Renee in this crazy life-journey and as we both serve at the East Texas Pregnancy Help Center.  Renee has the integral role as Administrator and amazes me daily with her multi-tasking, multi-hat abilities!  Renee holds a Bachelor of Science Business Administrative degree from College of the Ozarks and has traveled and worked in many different, beautiful, wonderful places, and we are so happy to have her now here with us.  She is a constant light to my life, and a faithful friend.  Here’s a little piece of her heart in words..

The “wild rose” theme fits when I think about how counterculture my story has turned out.  And I am thankful my story has unfolded the way it has.  It has molded and shaped me in the exact and unique “wild rose” that God intended.


My story may be considered “wild” to the world.  I remained single until almost 40 years old (pausing for the jaw-dropping gasps here.)  And an even “wilder” fact is that I chose to wait for my husband (…pausing again..)  How often does that happen anymore?  I give credit to the grace of God!  But admittedly, these facts about my life have been difficult to navigate emotionally far too often.  I have been very messy emotionally!

The world is full of messages that if you are not married early in life, there is something wrong with you.  Well-intentioned friends and family unceasingly ask questions such as, “Are you dating anyone?” “Are you going to stay single forever?” or make insensitive comments “Well, your standards may be too high.”  or  “It will happen when you stop looking.”  Without meaning to, they caused me to feel like they thought there was something wrong with me as a woman since I was unmarried and childless.

True story… one year I came home from college, probably about age 19 or 20.  My grandmother traditionally made full-sized afghans for her grandchildren as they each got engaged, however, she had already gotten it in her mind that I might never get married.  She actually called me an old maid and announced that she went ahead and made me a twin-sized afghan.  I am sure I turned all shades of red that day! Lol  Side note: she passed away almost ten years after that and I now treasure the twin-sized afghan.

There is an important truth that the world is not shouting to us as women.  The truth that we as women need to hear is that we are whole, we are beautiful, just the way we are.

Whether we are single, or divorced, or dating, or married, or widowed, or whatever our “label” happens to be…. and whatever the reason happens to be, there is absolutely NOTHING wrong with us because our label is not something else. 


Getting married does not make you mature or complete. Nor does singleness.  God made each of us in his image and He directs our steps.  One truth that help me reconcile my time of singleness in contrast with the messages the world sends is that God himself is the chooser and giver of my blessings (and the blessings of others).  As I embrace my own gifts, I can celebrate joys with others without a jealousy/pity party because I am truly glad God has blessed them.  And I can trust a God who gives every good and perfect gift.  We do not know how long we get to enjoy the gifts either, so if your gift is singleness, savor it.  If your gift is marriage, savor it.  If your gift is mom, step-mom, grandmother, savor it. Savor every gift while you have it.  One of my gifts was an extended time of singleness and I do not regret it.  I followed the Lord and had exciting adventures during those years.  I will be married 2 years in about 6 weeks.  I am the same whole, beautiful woman I was before I was married.  And I am savoring this new adventure as an equal but different gift.

I want to shout this message to the youth of our day.   In the era of social media, they are bombarded with even more false messages about relationships and what is and is not appropriate in them.  I want them to know that they are whole, they are beautiful JUST THE WAY THEY ARE!  No relationship can give them value or add to their value.  The value is already there. Embrace your value and celebrate who you are.  And I challenge all of us to be mindful of our words as we inquire of others.  We may not fully realize the messages we are sending, even the unintended ones.


story time

She carefully styled her hair.  Each strand strategically placed as excitement seemed to burst from her heart.  He sat in a nearby chair watching her… not intently, but warmly staying near her as she readied herself.  She had taken great toil w001ith her appearance that evening.  She was going out with friends!  As he observed her, he noted the gleam in her eyes, the hum from her lips, and a lilt in her steps.  He slowly walk out of the room, and outside to the bench that sat on their front porch…. his nearness and then departure alike unnoticed by her.  The half-hour passed, and he watched as she swung open the door glowing with the anticipation of her social-time to come.  She gave a quick wave, peck on the cheek and scurried away.  She did not note the two cups of coffee prepared and lovingly placed on the little table, next to the bench where he sat.  He never said a word.  He waved goodbye, and sipped his coffee alone as he watched a beautiful sunset fade its burning lights slowly sinking into the earth.

She returned very late that night, once again he watched her eyes sparkle as she glowingly described all the fun she and her friends had shared…. Mary had the most lovely new dress…. Cheyenne got a new job….. Eric danced so silly… a new friend Kyle was so witty and fun, his conversations just made the evening… She yawned climbing into the bed, “I’m too tired to shower he doesn’t care,” she laughingly thought, “he loves me anyways.”  As she snuggled into her comfy spot of the bed, she rolled over facing the wall with a grin still on her face from memories of the nights gleeful activities.  She never noticed his open arms, or the rose placed next to her bed.  She closed her eyes and sleep came with ease, all the fun had exhausted her!

He just wanted her to spend time with him.  He always showed her, always told her.  Ever so quietly, ever so strongly.  He didn’t argue with her, or tell her off…. because then he wouldn’t have what was desired; her heart wanting to be with him!  So he sat on the bench alone.  Every day continuously showing his love in many different, beautiful, creative expressions.  Always, either not noticed, or casually thanked and then quickly forgotten.

Oh, on special days, like their anniversary, she remembered.  She would put on a spectacular dress, prepare an amazing dinner, light the candles… “All for him!” Of course.  He saw the lack of true sparkle in her eyes.  She put on a glorious show, but there was no simplicity of true joy from just being with him —  from knowing him.  The next day she would have so much fun boasting to her friends about the splendid evening they had spent together commemorating “faithful” love with him.

She never really knew him.

He desired for her to sit on the bench, spend time with him, talk to him, know him.  He wanted to listen to her heart, and then share his.  He wanted her to see his loving ways, and take joy in his love.

One morning she told him, “You know, tonight I’m not going out.. I just want to come home and be with you.”  He was so excited, he prepared an extraordinary meal, bought special wine, set an elegant table with dimly lit white candles, and played special soft music that he knew to be her favorite.  So perfect.  He dressed himself with care, and sat and waited.  And waited.  And waited.  When midnight came the candles were melted into a puddle and flickered out.  He cleared away the table settings.  He never said a word of it to her.

He desired for her to be with him.  He had so many wonderful things to give her, share with her, and help relieve her from…. Kindness was his way.

A few months later she excitedly packed for a “wife conference” to learn all the ways to complete him better.  benchShe would come home raving about ways to do things better for their marriage…. but she never took the time to know what his ways were, or what he desired from her.  To tell the truth, she never even stopped long enough to look deep into his eyes, or watch what his hands did in love for her.

Moments come and then we watch the days go by and so life goes on.  Moments turn into days.  Days into memories.  Every evening he sat on the bench, just wishing for her to sit with him.

One day her last moment on this earth arrived…. her last memory was made… her final breath taken.  Her life had come and gone.  She had spent her lifetime “with” him, but she had never really just sat with him awhile.


I wrote this sometime ago… actually November 18, 2009.  Part of my journey to understand the promises of God was to also ponder this verse, “It is the glory of God to conceal a matter and the glory of kings to investigate a matter.”  Proverbs 25:2

He waits….

Perfect patience and love.

He waits….

You say you are His child,

A servant of the Most High.

But who do you fear and revere?

Who do you aim to please?

Do you even know Him?

What are His ways?

Lowliness, humility, meekness of heart.  He desires mercy not sacrifice.  Listen to Him.  Know Him.

……..then follow.