“It is only in sorrow bad weather masters us;

in joy we face the storm and defy it.”

–Amelia Barr

Amelia definitely nailed it with her quote above because when my husband and I and daughter and fiance went to finalize details yesterday at the rustic winery where my daughter’s wedding reception will take place tomorrow, the “bad weather” definitely mastered us. Not only because it was a cold, COLD 38 degees, which set a new record low for St. Louis on May 3 (lovely), but because 100 people will be eating dinner outside tomorrow night on a terrace that had no walls (see pic) with only those standing commercial heaters to keep them warm. Add to that endless rain and possible wind, and you get the picture — we were shaking in our boots, and not just from the rain and cold.

Let me tell you—this is the time you want to be one of those folks with a deep faith in God!! Although I have to admit, mine was as shaky as my body, shivering in the cold, quite humbling in the face of my daughter sitting there perfectly calm, trusting God while I fought a tic in my eye. Sigh. At least I raised her right.

Of course we had already asked the winery if they could re-install the Plexiglas walls they just took down a few weeks ago, which they adamantly said they could not. Because, you see, once down, the Plexiglas walls are down for the season since it’s a huge project to reinstall and besides, everybody knows average temperatures in St. Louis in May are low 70s. Yeah, right. This is St. Louis, remember? Home of surprise weather … and highly strung CDQ (caffeinated drama queen) mothers with pulsing tics in their eyes.

So we did what the Lessman family always does in a crisis of any kind—we prayed. We prayed for favor with the winery and we prayed for peace for the mother — who was hyperventilating — and lo and behold, the winery relented. For a small fee, some poor winery employee will spend six hours tomorrow morning re-installing the Plexiglas walls to 90% while heaters (hopefully) will take care of the 10% that opens out to a lovely terrace where the dance floor was supposed to be if the weather had cooperated. I’m breathing a lot easier now, although I am borrowing pashimas like crazy for a pashima table just in case … 🙂

Amelia got the bad weather part right for sure—if we fret and worry, sorrow masters us, but I’m afraid the lady missed the boat on the joy and storm. Because for those who know and love God, it’s not in joy we face the storm and deny it, it’s in prayer and faith that we are able to ward off fear as effectively as those wonderful Plexiglas walls, keeping us warm and safe in the knowledge that “all things work together for good for those who love God.” 

Because it may be Mother Nature who wins this battle, but it’s God who wins the war.

Pictures on Journal Jots soon, I promise! Be sure to check out the winners from my contest below and I won’t mind at all if you send up a prayer or two for warm, dry, calm weather tomorrow … 🙂

Hugs and Happy Wedding Weekend,



A HUGE thank you to each of you entered my Journal Jot contest last month and I wish that everyone could win. But unfortunately I could only pick three winners and my deepest thanks to each of these ladies:

First-Place Winner (most points accrued) – EMILY REILLY

—Kindle ($69.00 value)

—A character named after you in my next book, Dare to Love Again.

—Choice of any of my books including Love at Any Cost or Dare to Love Again

—Choice of five top CBA books from my library (all new and unused)


—Choice of any of my books including Love at Any Cost or Dare to Love Again

—Choice of two top CBA books from my library (all new and unused)

THIRD-PLACE WINNER (random drawing of points accrued where even one point has the chance to win) — DEANA DOUGHERTY

—Choice of any of my books including Love at Any Cost or Dare to Love Again

—Choice of one top CBA books from my library (all new and unused)


Save the date! May 17-19th, I will be taking part in a 31-author Christian Fiction Scavenger Hunt where the Grand Prize winner will receive an iPad Mini with all 31 e-books loaded on it, and 2 runners-up will receive all 31 books in paperback. Click here for more info! In addition, I will be offering my own giveaway of a Kindle or equivalent Amazon giftcard and a signed copy of choice of my books, so MARK YOUR CALENDARS!!


May 6-20, 2013:

Win your choice of my books at an interview on JUANITA NOBLE’S BLOG at: