Love and Service

Dear Friends,

I want to dedicate this blog to one of the most amazing people I’ve ever met—Clarabel Poland, my mother-in-law. Bev and I traveled to Maine last week where we participated in her burial service. She passed away in February, but couldn’t be buried then because the ground was frozen.

“Mom” Poland died at the age of 98 and left the legacy of a life well lived. She had her first three children in 2½ years (Bev was the second child), and shortly thereafter her husband was called to serve in the Navy during WWII. She raised her children alone without the modern conveniences we take for granted. She chopped wood to keep the family warm and to cook, washed clothes by hand, planted gardens and canned, and hunted game to feed her family. Even more impressive, the last several years of her life she was confined to her bed, unable to walk, but never complained. Her warm and kind spirit deeply impacted her nurses and everyone around her.

Galatians 6:7 says, “whatever a man sows, this he will also reap.” Clarabel was relentless in sowing love and in serving her family and friends. Relentless. And to the end, her days were filled with those she loved just hanging out and being with her. And her legacy is just that. Her children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, great-great grandchildren and friends who were all deeply influenced by her life. I know first-hand. I live with a loving servant named Bev Dayton. Our children and grandchild all benefit daily from the legacy of “Mom” Poland passed down to her daughter.

One of the legacies she passed to Bev was how to make fantastic pies. In Maine, they use the expression “wicked good!” to describe how delightful they are. Well, when Bev was young, and her mom cooked up a batch of pies, Bev would sneak a pie or two and hide them in her closet to enjoy them all by herself. So, when she cooks up pies today, I always have the inclination to check out our closet…lol!

As Clarabel Poland so faithfully modeled: People need to be loved and served to be influenced for Christ. We need to love and serve if we want to be used by the Lord in a profound way. May we love and serve well today!

Warmly in Christ,


Howard Dayton is the Founder and CEO, Compass – finances God’s way. For more information about Howard, please click HERE.

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