On Pondering and Pears

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Remember my promise of a Mother/Daughter team? You were challenged earlier in the week by Tessa Shockey’s blog on danger and discipline. Today, we hear from her mom (and my long-time friend), Grace Lyn Shockey


Grace Lyn and I first met when Mark and I welcomed their little family of three to Taiwan, as language students. Grace Lyn loved laughter, music and digging into the Word of God. She was also the first to introduce me to the perfect cup of Constant Comment tea. I still think of her every time I pour a cup.


Why don’t you make a cup yourself and let Grace Lyn take you back home with her to Charleston, South Carolina? Believe me. You’ll be glad you did.


Grace Lyn

“There were always pears in the late summer and into the fall when I was growing up. The tree in the backyard seemed to one-up itself every year with a bounty crop. 


“I don’t remember eating too many straight from the tree. But I remember eating plenty of them baked into a pear crisp. My Mother had three things she used the pears for: pear crisp, pear relish, and pear preserves. 


“After moving to Asia I discovered that the hard, crisp pear of my home was actually an Asian pear. I started cooking pear crisps for my own family from that time forward. 


“My Mother never, ever used a recipe to make crisp, so I had to go by visual memory. I played a sort of movie in my head of what I had seen her do so many, many times. I eventually learned to make a pretty good pear crisp. 


“I’m thankful for my Mother and the visual catalog of recipes I have stored on the reels in my head. 


“How’s your spiritual visual memory? I can still see Mother in action in my visual memory. I am thankful that God made us to have visual memories, as well as auditory ones. 


“The Bible tells us how the Israelites kept God’s story alive. The stories of God’s conquests and provision were passed down orally so that they would not forget them. 


“I can imagine an Israelite child listening to the crossing of the Jordan story and seeing the whole thing in vivid color. Maybe some of the children rushed off after the telling of the story to reenact a daring escape through walls of imaginary standing water. 


“We are like the Israelites. We have a need to remember. We need to write on the tablets of our hearts, and the hearts of others, the glories of our God. (Proverbs 3:3) 


“What does remembering accomplish? Here are just a few results of a good spiritual memory. 


  • “Remembering the good things that God has done causes our hearts, minds and mouths to give testimony to His marvelous works. (Psalm 71:14-16) 


  • “It allows an attitude of praise to rise within us. It can propel us head-long into worship. (Psalm 105:1-3, Ezra 3:11-13) 


  • “Remembering His goodness can quiet and restore our soul. (Psalm 23) 


  • “Remembering honors and pleases God. (Psalm 96)


“I have several pieces of paper that I hope to fill with sentences of thanks between now and Thanksgiving Day. I pray that God will flood my spiritual visual memory with the wondrous works He has done. Would you join me in recording thank you’s to God?  I pray you will! 


Mother’s Pear Crisp 



Peel and chop some hard Chinese pears. Cook them on the stove top with a little water until they start to get tender. 


Drain off most of the water and put them in a casserole dish. Pour some white sugar over them. 


Make a topping out of brown sugar,cinnamon, flour and soft butter. Mix it together until crumbly. Sprinkle over the pears. 


Put in the oven and bake till bubbly.


That’s my momma’s recipe – from the movie in my head.


We usually ate it ‘just so’, but sometimes with vanilla ice cream. And then after Cool Whip was invented (1967) we might put some of that on top!