By Charles Towne 

Well, what can I say?  I guess it all started under the pall of a death sentence.  That is something doctors are good at today, issuing death sentences.

“Mr. Towne you will have to be on blood pressure medicine for the rest of your life and let’s not forget the cholesterol medicine, you will have to take that to keep the stints and the angioplasty clear. And here, this is also important, a prescription for nitroglycerin, only take it when you are having another heart attack.”
“Okay doc, you know best.”

The same scenario was played out for my wife, only worse.

“Mr. Towne you will have to place your wife in an Alzheimer’s unit for her own protection.  Here, these drugs will stop her depression, (They didn’t say they would turn her into a zombie. And these two drugs are going to slow down the progression of Alzheimer’s, and this one, now this is a doozy, one shot a week to the tune of fifteen hundred smackers per month! This will slow down the recurrences of the M.S. What’s that? Naw; I don’t get anything for prescribing these drugs! That’s a good boy; you go home now and have a good life, bye, bye.  NEXT!”

Two doctors signed papers recommending Nan’s admission to a nursing home/Alzheimer’s unit.

God, how could I do this?

So that you may better understand my quandary you should know that I have been a notorious runner.  And I am not talking about marathons or sprints, I’m talking about running, as in, Awayyy!

After the tragic death of my first wife in an auto accident caused by a drunk driver those many years ago I remarried much too fast. That marriage ended in divorce.

Yet in my mental diapers without the good sense God gave a goofy gopher number three wife was followed by number four and then Nancy appeared, drawing me as a moth to a flame and I heard a voice, a deep Godlike voice saying, “Last chance Chucky my boy and you better get this one right!”

As I sat contemplating my belly button trying to figure out what to do next, God spoke to me again and what He said got my attention.
”Charles,” (I always know He is serious when He calls me Charles this way.  “Charles, Nancy just might be your salvation!”

Okay, Lord, I’ll play along, how can Nancy possibly be my salvation?

“Well, let me count the ways!”  He said.  “First of all, it has always been easy for you to run when things got tough so that is something you need to come to grips with.

Secondly, you are impatient, often harsh, not really Christ-like qualities to be found in a man. Believe me when I say Nancy is good for you, so suck it up me bucko!”

After listening to about a hundred other reasons that Nancy would be good for me and being told to “suck it up” He added, almost as an addendum, “And remember Charles, Nancy needs your love!”

A few more minutes passed leading me to believe that He was finished when He whispered, “And remember Charles, I’m watching!”

Only an idiot or a lobotomized lab rat would forget that God was watching so I must admit to some misgivings when He felt it was necessary to remind me.

O.K., the pressure was on.

Did I listen to His wise counsel?

Yah, sure!

Did I consider it wise counsel when He gave it to me?  Yes, absolutely.  After all, It was God speaking!

Did I follow His wise counsel?  Well, hey; don’t get so darned nosy!

But time, like stomach gas, passes and we end up either sweet or sour.  We improve or degrade, smile or frown, fish or cut bait, either or? Life is full of choices; we never stand still, and I found myself at choosing time.

You might wonder where I am going with this sordid tale and the best way I can answer is to say, upward and ever onward.

My Nancy, my dear wife is precious, she is a child of God, the apple of His eye, yes she is precious and as I treat her with love and grace, mercy and kindness, tenderness and compassion, patience and even more patience, she is slowly but surely returning from the shadowlands where she has been wandering for so long.
 As I apply all of those positive strokes, as I massage her with love, caress her with tenderness and patience and kiss her with joy, she fairly shines. 
I was on the verge of losing something precious, on the very precipice, the edge of the abyss but now God has given me another chance.

Have we arrived?  No, but we, Nancy and I, are on the journey, together.

(And now my darling is in a nursing home, therefore, I must still have some growing to do.)


 “Dear Papa God, thank you so much for being patient with me and teaching me.  Hold me close and teach me to love others as you have always loved me.   Please bless my family and help others to see Jesus in me.  Praise you O Holy friend, I Jesus blessed name I ask it, Amen

Charles Towne is first and foremost a Christian. An octogenarian, author, journalist, wildlife photographer, naturalist, caregiver, and survivor, his life has been and continues to be, a never-ending adventure filled with possibilities never imagined. He has adopted the philosophy that to Live fully, laugh uproariously, love passionately, and learn like there is no tomorrow, is a formula for a long and joy-filled life.


  1. Nancy is truly a blessing…I saw that the first time I met her. Such a gentle person. God has truly given you many opportunities for love and new beginnings, Charles. It is heart warming to see you “pass it on”…

  2. Yes Nici, you are so right, and it is that gentle sweet person that God sees. I have revealed my own humanity to my readers so they can see the Miracle Worker doing what He does best. It is never easy to make oneself transparent and thus vulnerable before men but if He can use me, praise Him to all the world. Blessings on you dear friend, Chaz

  3. Charles it is such a great thing that you listened to God and chose not to run away! And that you made the positive changes needed to nurture your wife into better health, not settling for a typical doom and gloom scenario. Even though she is now in a nursing home, you took great care of her for many years… and now you do the same for her in the nursing home. I guess God know what He is doing, eh? Thanks for being such an honest example of how God can lead us and change us, if we let him.

  4. Don, what does the bible say about having ears but not listening? I believe that is the condition of most of us but He is patient, long-suffering and kind. Thanks pal, Chaz

  5. Oh Kristin, isn’t He good? What a wonderful friend is our God. We stumble and falter through life wondering, wandering, questioning, and ye the solution to all of our problems is right there in front of us. I thank you my friend. Keep looking up. Chaz

  6. Yes, Chuck, we each have our path in life and it is up to us to listen to God and hear His directions.
    Sometimes, everything seems so jumbled and confusing, but God said He will never leave us nor forsake us. I thank you for your transparency and encouragement in each article. My wonderful husband truly cherished your friendship and told me many times how you encouraged him.
    Now, you encourage me.
    Thank you. I will continue to pray for you and your beautiful wife, Nancy. God bless you both!

  7. Dear CSG, perhaps that is the greatest part of being a Christian that we encourage one another. Encouragement in our lives, in our walk with Jesus, in the humdrum turmoil and frustrations of life, encouragement when we are up and especially when when we are down. Part of that encouragement is summarized in one little phrase found in the bible; “Love one another as I have loved you.” Thanks so very much for your blessed encouragement my friend. Chaz

    P.S. Yes, Nancy is beautiful isn’t she?

  8. Isn’t it wonderful that God never gives up on us? Like you, I was informed once of my need to stop being harsh. It took me a super long time to overcome that icky habit of harshness. I love the way you describe how patient and sweet and loving you have become to your Nancy. And how you can visibly see how it really helps her. What a blessing. Thanks for your articles!

  9. Nicole, oh yes, that old demon Harshness, an old acquaintance of mine that still comes to visit now and then. It is not so much that I am patient, sweet and loving as it is that those qualities are evident in my darling. She is truly a precious gift from God. Blessings to you and yours, Chaz

  10. EzJ, ISN’T IT THE TRUTH MY FRIEND! He has been called “The Hound of Heaven” for very good reason. Praise Him for the fact that He has proven relentless in His pursuit for His own! Many Blessings, Chaz

  11. Chuck, I had the chance to watch you and Nancy many times, when my Betty was in the FLNC. I came away with how beautiful and outgoing Nancy is, and how she smiles when you come into the room! It is obvious that you two love each other, and even more obvious that God loves both of you. As a previous long term caregiver, I have a deep admiration of you and the way you take care of Nancy. God has a plan for our lives, and I pray that our Father God has a great one for you and Nancy.

  12. O Don, truer words were never spoken, God has a plan! We may imagine that we know best and want to run things our way but in reality He does have a plan for each of us, all we have to do is get out of the way and give Him room to move in our lives. Blessings on you dear friend. Chaz

  13. Every truly great teacher has one talent above all others, they make their charges THINK! You Charles also have this talent! I read you and remember, I learn, I smile, and always, I think! Your words often nudge me back toward the way I know I should go, especially when I think I think I have found a better (usually easier) way because I am lazy! God bless you Chuck, you make me THINK!

  14. Having heard and read many of your tales I surely understand why Papa God put Nancy in your life. Having had the absolute pleasure of meeting Nancy at the gym I fully understand how she was able to set you on your obviously successful journey together. God bless you both.

  15. Richard, you humble me my friend. Please pray that I can cause others to think about Him for at this stage of my life there is no greater calling. Blessings pal, Chaz

  16. Mike old son, as Nanny has made me a better man I have an idea so your wife has done for you. These ladies certainly have a tempering influence on us don’t they, Keep looking up, Chaz


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