My Two Fathers

Posted by on Jun 17, 2012 | 14 comments

My Two Fathers
In loving memory of my daddy, Lyle E. Thurston, who died when he was struck by lightning while fly-fishing on the San Juan River, in the “Quality Waters” below Navajo Dam near Farmington, New Mexico on September 29, 1995. God blessed me with this poem the first Father’s Day following my daddy’s death.
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The Palm of the Master’s Hand

Posted by on Mar 12, 2012 | Comments Off on The Palm of the Master’s Hand

One after another like snowflakes
The trials keep tumbling down.
Sometimes hope disappears into silence
As the snowflakes cover the ground.
I forget as I stand there thinking
As it seems to cover my dreams,
There is a God Who is watching o’er me,
And the fear is the Enemy’s scheme.
Sometimes when I wake in the morning,
I feel still surrounded by night,
I forget the One I belong to,
It is not my battle to fight.
I hold onto things so tightly
I forget they are not really mine.
I fail to remember my Father
Makes things beautiful in His own time.
I get blinded by the blizzard around me.
I lose sight of the brightly lit home,
Forgetting there is a strong life-line,
If I hold tightly I cannot roam.
When I take time to look at the snowflakes,
When their difference and intricacy I see,
There is evidence of my dear Maker,
Who has a beautiful purpose for me.
It is never His purpose to blind me,
To wander helpless is Satan’s plan.
The loving God Who guides my life
Always stands, holding open His hands.
All the wealth of His great treasures,
The abundance of his magnificent stores,
Lie open before me for the taking
If I cling to my Master and Lord.
Every doubt and fear of the blinding storm
Comes from forgetting Who made the Plan.
He will never let go or leave me
When I rest in the palm of His hand.

Copyright by Norma Gail Thurston-Holtman & 2MefromHim Ministries, 2012. All rights reserved.
Do not use without permission of author.
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Christmas Hope

Posted by on Dec 25, 2011 | Comments Off on Christmas Hope

Long ago
In a stable dark,
A little babe was born,
And hope came to
This darkened world
That blessed Christmas morn.
From Adam’s time
The curse came down,
And all creation groaned.
A God-shaped void
In all men’s hearts
And for his soul__ no home.
Through Adam’s choice,
God ordained a time
That Satan’s wiles would rule…
To allow for man
Himself, to see
Satan’s scheme as dark and cruel.
Through sin, man’s heart
Was altered,
He could not see his pain
As coming from
His own wrong choice…
On God, he placed the blame.
God promised,
The day He gave the curse
That He someday would redeem…
His word proclaimed
His creation to save
Through the birth of His Son__ the King.
Down through the ages
Man went his way
Though God’s word was strong and clear…
His grace extended
To all who chose
In His power and name to fear.
Then one night in a stable,
Dark and dirty
As heart’s full of sin…
A tiny child
Was born to a world
That offered no more room than the inn.
The angels sang…
The shepherds kneeled…
The wisemen traveled far…
All to see a child
Whose destiny
Was a Cross of pain and scars.
And today,
Men still are puzzled…
“Why would I a Savior need?”
Their hearts are dark…
Their minds are dim…
They were weaned on Satan’s creed.
In the quiet
Of a thoughtful moment
When, unwilling,
We admit our need__
We know the relationship’s broken,
His offer
We know we must heed.
His return is quickly approaching__
Long prophesied
More than His birth__
The Hope of the Ages__
To a world forlorn__
He is God__ His judgment is sure.
The Savior,
To know all our trials,
As a baby, chose to be born…
So come on your knees to the stable__
To the hope
Of that first Christmas morn!

Copyright by Norma Gail Thurston-Holtman & 2MefromHim Ministries, 2011. All rights reserved. Do not use without permission of author.

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True Freedom’s Symbol

Posted by on Sep 11, 2011 | 1 comment

True Freedom’s Symbol

In our rapidly changing world it is more important than ever to remember what makes America great. This poem was inspired by the terrible events of 9/11.

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True Freedom’s Symbol

Posted by on Jul 3, 2011 | Comments Off on True Freedom’s Symbol

Tall and proud against the sky,
Our country’s beacon stands.
Each star and stripe the symbol
Of sacrifice by willing hands.
Each thread within its fabric,
A reminder of the tears;
Of sweat and toil and suffering
By men and women through the years.
Our flag, a sign to all the world,
Of freedom, hope, and peace,
Of triumph over hardship,
And victory’s sweet release.
We all saw Lady Liberty
 Framed against the smoke…
 Of attacks by men in ignorance
Of the promise which she spoke.
Her words cry out to men like them,
The “tired”, and “poor” who suffer,
To the “huddled masses,” “tempest-tost,”
A hope of plenty, she offers.
But there stands a Symbol greater,
Which will endure beyond the years.
Born by our Savior in sacrifice
To wipe away all tears.
The Cross of Christ is the reason
Our Founding Fathers came,
And the only hope for our nation
Is to return to Him again.
The only hope for this country
Is to seek the Creator’s plan,
His Cross the same from age to age,
Dwarfs the symbols of this land.
By Norma Gail Thurston Holtman, 10/8/2001
Ó Copyright, 2001, Norma Gail Thurston Holtman
(Quotations come from “The New Colossus”, by Emma Lazarus, 1883,
engraved on the base of the Statue of Liberty.)
Throughout my entire life I have been taught to be proud to be an American.   My father was a former Marine who taught me to sing the Marine Corps Hymn as soon as I could talk. 
I have, as many of you do, ancestors who emigrated from other lands.  Mine came from England, Ireland, and Scotland to find a better life.  My husband’s family emigrated from Holland when he was nine years old.  This country has offered hope to people from all over the world since its beginning.
My ancestors have fought to defend the freedoms for which this country was founded; some were among the early Dutch settlers who came to New York and faced a hard life for a chance at freedom; at least three fought in the Revolution, two serving at Valley Forge with George Washington and at least one in the War of 1812.  Some fought in the Civil War (on both sides), one supposedly on the Monitor, and one, who couldn’t stand the fighting but wanted to serve his country, tended mules for the Union Army. 
Many of my ancestors were homesteaders and pioneers to the west who faced hard work paid off in poverty, or were killed or kidnapped by Indians, or feuding neighbors. My grandfather was a World War I veteran and I had three uncles who fought in World War II, and some in Korea. My father, though stateside, was in the Marine Corps during Korea. I remember the pride as well as the anguish of my aunt who had three sons in Viet Nam at the same time.  The only wars in which none of my family served was the Gulf War, and now Iraq and Afghanistan.
My in-laws suffered through the German occupation of Holland in World War II, and I have listened to them tell of what it meant when the American Army liberated Holland.
When our country was attacked by terrorists on September 11, 2001, I was struck most by a picture of the burning towers of the WorldTradeCenter taken from New YorkHarbor, in the forefront of the picture stood the Statue of Liberty. 
The pride I feel in being an American has grown over the past few years as I have home schooled my son and taught high school level US History and Civics from Christian curriculum.  I have learned about a side of our Founding Fathers that you never hear growing up in the public schools. 
This country was founded by Christian men and women who came to a new land to spread the gospel and to worship in freedom.  Many of them gave their lives for the sake of their faith and their belief in what God wanted this country to be, not just a national pride based on who they were, but a commitment to establishing “one nation under God”. 
I firmly believe Psalms 33:12, “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord….” 
This poem is an expression of that belief and God enabled me to put on paper some of what I feel about what we face as a nation in this new war against terrorism.   This is really a war against those who stand against God and freedom and all that this nation represents.  May God truly bless America by sending revival to our land to enable us to face this enemy.
Norma Holtman, October 14, 2001
Copyright by Norma Gail Thurston Holtman & 2MefromHim.blogspot.com. All Rights Reserved. Do not use without express written permission of the author.
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My Two Fathers – In honor of my father, Lyle E. Thurston

Posted by on Jun 14, 2011 | Comments Off on My Two Fathers – In honor of my father, Lyle E. Thurston

 “He fills His hands with lightning and commands it to strike its mark.”  Job 36:32

When I was very little and afraid of the storm,
My father would hold me, so I felt safe and warm.
Silly songs, funny stories, and wild games we would play—
The fun and his love chased the bad things away.
The lightning and thunder were never so bad
When I was held safe in the arms of my dad.
As I grew older and the problems grew more large,
The gentle, patients answers still came straight from his heart.
There was no more important thing he ever had to do
Than take time to show— the important thing was you.
He never gave anyone less than his best,
No matter what the need was, his commitment stood the test.
When lightning struck our house one night,
Shattering the darkness with its brilliant light—
Hobbling on crutches from a broken leg,
He soon had us laughing from the jokes that he made.
Once certain that all would soon be well—
He soon had another great story to tell.
Many things set my father apart,
Not the least of which was his great, loving heart.
People who came to my father in need
Always left knowing they had a friend indeed.
He did much to further the Father’s plan
By the generosity of his giant hands.
My father rose each morning to meet with his Lord.
He loved Him and served Him and cherished His word.
He was a man of great strength—yet gentle and kind
Because he loved the Lord Jesus with heart, soul, and mind.
He would say that if anything set him apart,
It was the presence of the Savior, who lived in his heart.
Then the lightning once again appeared,
Something all in the family but my father feared.
He, rather than seeing something to fear—
Said it showed the protection of God very clear.
For all in the house were both safe and sound
And only slight damage to the house was found.
As the years passed by, the family grew,
The son-in-laws came, and the grandchildren, too.
Each one he loved in a unique special way,
And faithfully, for each one, he daily would pray—
Upon our family, God’s blessings were poured,
Because each day my father spent time with his Lord.
It could have been just a regular day,
But our heavenly Father didn’t see it that way.
A man going fishing—just and ordinary man—
But our heavenly Father had another plan.
Ordinary things, when you live for the Lord,
Can often have bearing on eternal reward.
Once more, God’s lightning entered our lives,
And on fiery wings, bore my father home, through the skies.
The look on his face showed amazement, they said,
And confirmed for us all that he was not really dead.
He had gotten his first glimpse of his heavenly home,
And he knew that our Lord would not leave us alone.
The lessons that he taught us through the life that he lived;
And the Lord that he gave all the love he could give;
Are still here inside us—though he’s gone from our sight
Across that wide river— the River of Life.
He’s sitting there watching—he knows we will come;
And from his side, it really won’t be very long.
If we could just see—each event in our lives—
Is meant just to show us, God is loving and wise.
The traits that I loved in my father, you see,
Are all of the things God will be—just for me.
And so when I long for Daddy’s face—just to see,
I’ll look up to heaven—where two fathers wait for me.
Written June 14, 1996.  In loving memory of my daddy, Lyle E. Thurston, who died when he was struck by lightning while fly-fishing on the San Juan River, in the “Quality Waters” below Navajo Dam near Farmington, New Mexico on September 29, 1995.

Ó Copyright by Norma Gail Thurston Holtman. All Rights Reserved. Do not use without express written permission of the author.

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