The Next Season

I began wondering today what people would say about me when I’m gone. She adored her husband, she was an amazing Mimi to five grandsons, when her son and daughter called, she always answered. We always loved her as our pastor. She was my trustworthy friend. This is wishful thinking on my part as I have always fought insecurity and intimidation. At my age, I can tell you that I now realize that God gifted me for this season of my life. That’s how I arise each morning with determination to step into His image throughout the day.

I could never have dreamed that my days would revolve around my hubby, Henry, who is battling Dementia. As he battles daily, our entire family is part of the infantry called into duty to feed, clothe and bathe. I had one of those meltdowns this morning after the nurse, who has been on daily visits this week, began informing me of what our tomorrows may entail. She explained that Henry is so frail at this time that he will eventually need to be kept in the bed as he is unable to be up and about now. Because I am always wanting the details, I began questioning how to change him in bed, how to take care of his physical needs. She immediately responded that she would walk me through the process.

The one reason I can even talk about our scenario today is because our family has been through so many seasons in our lives, seasons that we could never have imagined we could make it through. When Henry and I decided that my mom and dad needed to move in with us, I could not imagine what that scenario would look like. How in the world could we be full-time pastors plus I worked a full-time job, run a Bible college and take care of the needs of these two precious people that we both called Mom and Dad.

Henry immediately began house hunting to find the perfect place where three generations could live together and not be overwhelmed with the closeness of family. Of course, as he always did, he found the right place that would house us and our two high schoolers plus have a small apartment for our parents. When I talk about Mom and Dad, I have to always say “ours” because Henry was an exceptional son who always considered their needs. In fact, when he said we would be merging our households, I could not figure in a million years how Mom and I could do this – two strong women in the same household. Funny thing is that, when we moved in, Mom just settled in and allowed all of us to take care of her. We did not talk about the next season and yet, that season became easy to traverse.

At that time, I was working full-time as an assistant to a CEO of an undercover agency plus heading our music program at church. There were many lunches that I sat in the break room listening to music and learning lyrics for the next music practice. I would get off at 5 pm and head to church to prepare for practice. Now, Henry was just as busy building our church one family at a time. He would, some nights, teach Bible studies in the homes of two separate families, then walk in the door after our high schoolers were already in bed.

When Dad and Mom moved in, Dad was always in the kitchen making his famous lemon pound cake or sauerkraut or pork chops. There were certain foods that everyone knew was his best. Because we were now one big family, Dad expected us to be at the family table to eat with him and Mom in the evenings; however, there were many nights that Henry and I would come in late so we would eat at a local restaurant near the church. One night, we came in about 7 pm, and Dad was waiting at the door. He let us know that he had cooked a meal for us and we had not been there to eat. We apologized for not coming in earlier and excused ourselves to our bedroom. As we walked in the bedroom, Henry looked at me flushed and said, “Did Dad just scold us for coming in late? I feel like I’m the high schooler again.”

We eventually sat Dad down and explained that, just because they lived with us, we still had a busy life. We were not retired and could not stop living just because they had moved in with us. The reason we moved them in was to make life easier for them. They would no longer worry about house payments or utilities. They could save their money from the sale of their house and just enjoy life.

Because I remember this time with Mom and Dad in our lives is the reason I can now maneuver the place we are walking into today. Our son, Rob, and daughter, Kimberly, are two of the busiest people I know. They have hearts for God and are totally sold out to loving people back to life. They both are pastoring churches and Kimberly is traveling thousands of miles yearly speaking to ministries around the world. I understand that I cannot expect them to be here when beckoned. They are the same ages that Henry and I were when we became caregivers for our parents. We could not get off the train of life to take care of Mom and Dad full-time and yet, it worked. So, I am expecting, in this season, that whatever happens will be what God has ordained. He gives us the strength to make it day by day. We realize we cannot know what our tomorrows will bring, but we do know who holds tomorrow.

The one thing I want my family and my friends to say about me is that I just showed up. I was there when they needed me, and I did my best.

Published by Ann Jones

Ann and her husband, Henry, have been in ministry together for fifty-two years and have traveled the world for Jesus Christ. It's a new season for Ann and she invites everyone to travel with her.

20 thoughts on “The Next Season

  1. Hello there
    Thank you so much for your transparency and allowing us to get a peak just a little glimpse into your incredible beautiful and heartbraking journey. I am praying for an extra heap of strength and may God’s amazing grace and mercy keep you in perfect piece. With much love Elder Conny

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  2. wow Ma, that’s amazing! Thank you for your transparency. I have literally enjoyed EVERY blog since you started and I’m always looking forward to the next one. Your stories carry that vibe Dad used to have when he told his stories. We love you and we sincerely appreciate the role you’ve played in our lives for the last 17 years.

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  3. Absolutely beautiful! Thank you for being not only as inspiring but encouraging me to just only live in the moment.

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  4. That was beautiful Pastor Ann.I love your writing you are so talented.I love you so much. Love and prayers Belinda

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  5. This was so moving. I care for a husband who suffered a traumatic brain injury. Thank you for sharing this. I am now his caregiver and it changes so much.

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  6. Isn’t it just like God to use the circumstances we made it through to actually prepare us for another personal journey?
    I have been surrounded by loss the past month…best friend, young cousin, friend’s husband.
    All within seven days of each other.
    Being quarantined at home and we couldn’t visit at the hospital or even attend the funerals.
    I told my husband, Keith, I think this is all beginning to get to me. I told him I think God thinks Imam a lot stronger than I feel.
    I was so broken-hearted.
    He said maybe God was preparing me for something.
    Your story made me think of that.
    I love you Sister Jones,
    Debbie Cooley Kilgore

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  7. Ann I love reading your Blog. I have been where you are and I understand your feelings..God will give you the strength that you need. Bless you!

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  8. My goal during this pandemic was to get closer to God then by chance I saw one of Kim’s videos on Facebook and have been hooked ever since. You & your daughter have taught me so much and I look forward to hearing you both every day. I appreciate the time you give spreading the word of God and your teaching. I also bought all Kim’s books, can’t wait to get them. God bless you and your family and thank you so much. 🙏🏼❤️

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  9. Both you Anne and Kimberly have been a life line and such an encouragement to me every day thru the past weeks I have loved and soaked in your wise words of life. Thank you for the time you have given to so many of us around the world. I am a pastors daughter and at present a caregiver to my mum who has dementia and my dad is unwell. We live in New Zealand. I have loved your transparency honesty and obedience to the Lord which has really touched my heart in so many ways and I wanted to say thank you to you both I truly feel so blessed even tho my life has not been easy and I have faced many trails your words have touch my heart in so many areas. Much love to you both

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  10. Hi Ann,

    I recently discovered Kim’s page and really enjoy the dynamic between you both on screen. I feel I have a very similar relationship with my mother. I don’t know you personally but your wisdom and spiritual maturity is beyond measure. I had a very powerful awakening a few years ago and I am slowly understanding the importance of different seasons in my life.

    I know God is very proud of your tenacity and strength. It’s not easy to watch your partners health decline and not be able to do anything about it. My thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time.

    Although I do not know you, I will say how wise you are. How much I appreciate you sharing your knowledge and wisdom with me. I think it’s very clear God is using you to pave the way for the next generation of powerful women for God. You should be so proud of yourself! You and Kim have brought so much light into my life during this quarantine! I don’t know how well I would have managed without you both.

    Your light and honesty are truly inspiring and admirable qualities you exemplify. I think your legacy will be all the lives you touched which I’m sure is in the millions!

    I really admire your strength and I am very grateful God is using you to inspire women across the World! You are more powerful and influential than you will ever know! Thank you again for just being yourself and sharing your wisdom with me. Your transparency is sincere and very admirable. I wish you all the very best.

    Sincerely,

    Angela Bennett

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  11. Dear Anne
    Such a beautiful heart touching blog. I admire you and always will. Always looking forward to hear what you and PS Kim have to share through the word. It has blessed me immensely.
    Indeed I truly believe that this is your season. You speak with so much power and conviction though your voice is very soft.
    Love you Anne
    Eagerly waiting for your next blog.
    Stay blessed for always.

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  12. My Dear Ann, God will see you through this season in your life. His grace is sufficient. We never know how much we can take until we are there. I want to thank you for being the strong and faithful woman you are today. Your life is helping and touching many. God bless you and keep you in His care. Prayers for you and your family are going before the Father continually. Love you My Sister in Christ. Sherry.

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