When You Hear the Word LOVE, Who Comes to Mind?

Happy Valentine’s Day!

I have a different sort of tablescape post for you this week.  Our church hosts a meal and a little entertainment for our JOY (Just Older Youth) group at church each month.  It gives the older crowd a reason to gather with their friends for food, fellowship, and fun.

At last week’s gathering, I snapped a few pictures before the guests arrived.

JOY Room

The entertainment for the evening was Patricia Neely-Dorsey, who read her poetry to the group after enjoying a special meal.  I took no pictures of her and/or the group (sorry).  I was on kitchen duty and only caught the last bit of her poetry readings.

Meet My Mississippi

Miss Margaret is the tireless woman behind the JOY gifts of love each month.  I have no picture of her, either, but she wouldn’t want that anyway.  She directs our kindergarten/preschool program for the community at our church.  Everyone loves Miss Margaret…because she loves THEM (us).

You should see the kids run to hug her at any and all events!  After her full days of managing the kindergarten program, once each month, Miss Margaret plans, prepares, and serves nearly a hundred JOY guests.  Her table settings are always done with love and beauty, keeping with the theme of the season.

Valentine Tablescape

This time, place mats are laminated copies of an image depicting Patricia Neely-Dorsey’s poem Meet My Mississippi.  That’s very fitting for this group, many of whom have lived in Mississippi their entire lives, working to improve our town and state along the way.

Place Setting

Miss Margaret made a large image of the poem to hang on the wall to accompany the Valentine decorations.  Beyond that, Miss Margaret cooks the food!

Meet My Mississippi

I won’t give away her age, but Miss Margaret continues to serve this JOYful group each month when she should be sitting with them herself and being served!

But, she would never allow that.  This night is her gift of love to them.  In love for her Savior, Jesus, she serves.  And loves.  And gives.

She is love, just as Jesus is Love.

Who came to mind when you read the title of this post?  Miss Margaret comes to my mind.  Every time.

She always loves and encourages others – no matter what’s happening in her own life.  Just over a year ago, she lost her husband to cancer (shortly after her mother’s passing).  Miss Margaret knows they aren’t gone…just in a new location…heaven.  Through her hard journey, Miss Margaret never stopped hosting JOY nights.  She needed to grieve, but there would be time for that later, she said.  Always putting others first.  That’s what she does.  That’s what we’re supposed to do.  (I admit to being too selfish sometimes.)

She is inspiration for us all!


PS:  I’m sharing this post at Tablescape Thursday.

PSS:  I’ll be on Facebook Live at some point tomorrow.  Join me if you can – to see how to add vintage tin paintable wall paper to an old dresser.  If you miss it Live, you can always see the replay.  Update:  See the post with Facebook Live video here.










  1. teresa says

    I think of my Valentine, when I think of love because he doesn’t just say the words, but acts upon them and not just with me. He’s so responsible and always thinking of how to do things best to make life smoother even at work. That’s love in action. He’s going through a particularly difficult time now and I know the love he’s given will help see us through to the other side.
    I look forward to your pics and post on the tinned wallpaper.

    • says

      You are one blessed woman! I think most of us think of our spouse, but I also think of so many others. There are a lot of wonderfully loving people in this world. Happy Heart Day! 🙂

  2. says

    Kim, what a “joy” Miss Margaret must be. The gift of service speaks of her love for God. Miss Margaret reminds me of my sweet Mother who was always serving others. I miss her every day and it has been almost ten years since she went to her heavenly home! What a blessing for your church! Happy Valentine’s Day
    Pam Richardson recently posted…Tablescape Tuesday: Black Tie & Red RosesMy Profile

    • says

      Yes, she is. I’m sorry you are without your mother now. It’s got to be hard. Praise the Lord, she’s with Him! Happy Valentine’s Day to you, too, Pam 🙂

  3. Dale S. says

    Loved this post! What a precious lady “Miss Margaret” is!! Please give “Miss Margaret” a big hug from me!

    …when I think of LOVE…I think of all the people in my life that take time to laugh, cry, listen, and pray for (& with) me — my sweet grandmothers (now in heaven), a dear Aunt Alice.my sweet husband, my children, and my BFFs ( the 2AM friends!)!!! I am blessed! 🙂

  4. robin says

    Well, 1st thing that came to my mind was….my hubby. Since it IS Valentine’s Day. 🙂
    Then I thought, “Wait. JESUS!”

    Miss Margaret sounds a little like my friend Lillian. She runs EVERY gathering we have and runs the kitchen, cooking a lot of things ahead of time at home. She also pays all the bills at the church. She sings in the choir. She is on the board. She runs ladies’ prayer on Mondays. She drives the one revered to and from church since he is legally blind. She is always at prayer meeting/Bible study. When one older lady was alive she did all her errands and took her to the doctor. She was a good friend to her. She is a very YOUNG 72!!! She reminds me of my own mother….doing everything for everybody. All my life my mom was always running.

    Love also = mom.

    • says

      It’s amazing how these older women have so much energy! It sounds like Lillian is a special lady – just like your mom was special. Gifted at serving others. Yes, Jesus for sure. 🙂

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