Pray you are having a wonderful season filled with abundant joy!
My name is Sharon Dean and I am LoRee’s virtual assistant. It has been such an honor to have been asked to be a guest on LoRee’s blog this season.
I have had the pleasure of reading LoRee’s beautiful stories for a few years now. Each of them has helped me grow in my faith throughout my life. I feel as if each character is next to me and guides me to be a better person each day. Some days would be very difficult without them. Each story resonates with something personal in my life. I find hope and peace in each one that fills my heart with so much joy and love.
I would like to focus on a particular Christmas book of LoRee’s, Hiding from Christmas. You see, Calissa’s story was inspired by my own story. The story of my grandparents.
Grandma Alice and Grandpa Russell are very dear to my heart but look upon me from Heaven now. They were the spirit of love, inside and out. They taught me what true love is.
A close-knit family, Grandma and Grandpa brought out the best in everyone they met. There was not a place they went that their love for each other did not shine so brightly. They encouraged each of there children and families to be the best they could be and to always love God and put Him first in all you do.
I will always remember visits to my grandparents home, from helping in the gardens to sharing stories by the fire. So many wonderful memories that LoRee captured so beautifully in Hiding from Christmas.
But we also have memories that are painful, even to this day. Grandma Alice was diagnosed in the early 1980s with cancer. She suffered thirteen strokes, numerous surgeries and was such a fighter through each and every one. Her last surgery outcome was unexpected and had left her blind and paralyzed in which she had to remain in a nursing home. Some days she did not know us but others we cherished as the stories and pictures reminisced through were amazing. Grandpa was by her side every day. His love for his wife never wavered.
Their love was so strong that they always told us they were going to Heaven together. Our hearts broke into a million pieces Christmas of 1986 when on Christmas Eve Grandpa Russell suffered a heart attack and passed away that night. We were devastated so much that the family decided nine days later to tell Granda Alice the news. Once they told her, five minutes later she had passed away too. She and Grandpa were together, just like they always said they would be.
The definition of true love was instilled in their love for each other. The Christmas of 1986 proved it.
That Christmas season I also lost my faith in true love and God. How could He let a love like theirs die. Oh how I missed my grandparents terribly! I knew then I would never love.
Until a man entered my life and showed me that true love does exist and Grandma Alice and Grandpa Russell was still shining their light from Heaven to me showing me still that love never dies. Not with our soul mates nor with God. I met Leroy in 1990 and we got married in 1991 and still shine the light of love thirty years later, just like my grandparents.
Never doubt the power of love, God’s love and true love. It is love that makes the journey here on earth the most amazing ride one could take. Without love we would not be who we are today. Always Love, Always Shine Your Light!
It was a very special moment back in June 2018 in which I met LoRee for the very first time in person. She is so genuine and her carefree spirit just shines in all she does. If you ever have the chance to meet her, your life will be so blessed. I know I am forever blessed by LoRee and the ministry God has gifted her with. Thank you LoRee for being you and all you do for us readers and friends! God could not have given us a brighter gift as He has in you! The love you shine each day brightens our days and for that, my friend, we are grateful!