The Lessons of Bryce’s Life

The Lessons of Bryce’s Life – by Rodger Mangold II

NOTE: 3 years ago today Bryce’s family experienced perhaps the saddest day they will ever experience – Bryce passed away suddenly and far too early for us all. Our hearts still are holding up the family in prayer and love. May we never forget this young man and the lessons his brief life taught us all.

Full of promise, eyes that glistened, a boy that was “all-boy” to the end,
Little Bryce Pierson’s life is gone, a shock to his family and friends.

A 7-year-old, that lived life to the fullest, brought joy to his mom and his dad,
A smile that was sure to melt your heart, now the family is broken and sad.

You’ll hear words like, “Bryce is in a better place, he’s certainly now with the Lord,”
Words meant to bring you great comfort, but your heart isn’t any less sore.

Uncontrollable tears will fall from your eyes; your heart will pound out of your chest,
Don’t you dare look back with an ounce of regret, Jeff and Sheri you both did your best.

To dwell on the loss of this precious boy could rob you of the joy that he brought us,
Look back if you can on the happy times, and the lessons his short life has taught us.

Grass stains, ripped blue jeans, untied shoes; all just par for the course,
Run, romp, play, enjoy life, live each moment without chance of remorse.

Oh, to be 7 years old again, we live vicariously through the next generation,
To live care-free, from one adventure to the next, no regrets worthy of mention.

Why not take each day as Bryce did, looking forward to the promise within,
Take time to enjoy life’s pleasures, like the sunrise, the sunset, and the wind.

Simple things we’ve taken for granted, working hard to pay off all our debt,
Our children really need more time with us, another chance we may never get.

Hug your children tighter, longer, and more often, kissing them from head to toe,
Tickle them till they laugh, rock them when they cry, reach for their hand to hold.

We know that children are a gift from God, sometimes that seems like a chore,
As small as they are, they won’t be forever, so cherish them all the more.

There’s no doubt in our mind, you’ll miss dear Bryce, an untimely end to be sure,
May God grant you comfort and peace in your hearts, only He truly holds the cure.

The Lord knew Heaven was incomplete without Bryce, but for us it’s all just too abrupt,
He’s up there with Jesus, his mansion complete, where no moth, or rust can corrupt.

Let’s not forget, Jesus loves the little children, red and yellow, black and white,
We see the death of Bryce as a loss, but to the Lord, it’s precious in His sight.

Let the fondness of Bryce’s memory and the reflection of his smile, give warmth to your sorrowful soul,
Let the promise of seeing him again bring you peace; when reunited his sweet hand you’ll hold.

Dedicated to the family, written by Rodger D. Mangold II

Motherhood as a Career?

A woman named Ann renewing her driver’s license at the County Clerk’s office was asked by the woman recorder to state her occupation. She hesitated, uncertain how to classify herself. “What I mean is,” explained the recorder, “do you have a job, or are you just a …..?

“Of course I have a job,” snapped Ann. “I’m a Mom.” 

“We don’t list ‘Mom’ as an occupation… ‘Housewife’ covers it,” said the recorder emphatically.

I forgot all about her story until one day I found myself in the same situation, this time at our own Town Hall. The Clerk was obviously a career woman, poised, efficient, and possessed of a high sounding title like, “Official Interrogator” or “Town Registrar.”

“What is your occupation?” she probed.  What made me say it, I do not know… The words simply popped out.  “I’m a Research Associate in the field of Child Development and Human Relations.”

The clerk paused, ball-point pen frozen in midair, and looked up as though she had not heard right. I repeated the title slowly, emphasizing the most significant words. Then I stared with wonder as my pronouncement was written in bold, black ink on the official questionnaire.

“Might I ask,” said the clerk with new interest, “just what you do in your field?”  Coolly, without any trace of fluster in my voice, I heard myself reply, “I have a continuing program of research, (what mother doesn’t), in the laboratory and in the field, (normally I would have said indoors and out). I’m working for my Masters, (the whole family), and already have four credits, (all daughters). Of course, the job is one of the most demanding in the humanities, (any mother care to disagree)? I often work 14 hours a day, (24 is more like it). But the job is more challenging than most run-of-the-mill careers and the rewards are more of a satisfaction rather than just money.”

There was an increasing note of respect in the clerk’s voice as she completed the form, stood up, and personally ushered me to the door.

As I drove into our driveway, buoyed up by my glamorous new career, I was greeted by my lab assistants — ages 13, 7, and 3. Upstairs I could hear our new experimental model, (a 6 month old baby), in the child-development program, testing out a new vocal pattern. I felt I had scored a beat on bureaucracy! And I had gone on the official records as someone more distinguished and indispensable to mankind than “just another Mom.”

Motherhood…..What a glorious career!

Does this make grandmothers “Senior Research Associates in the Field of Child Development and Human Relations” and great-grandmothers “Executive Senior Research Associates”? I think so! I also think it makes Aunts “Associate Research Assistants.”


Not sure who the author of this clever commentary is, but I can think of no better time than Mother’s Day to share it with all of you. If anyone knows the author I would love to credit them for this. Thanks, and blessings to you all, and a very Happy Mother’s Day.  Pastor RDM

Childhood Holiday Memories

Growing up, my parents were quite the decorators. My Dad went to lengths to make sure that our “picture window” indeed had a picture. I can remember people driving by real slowly to admire my dad’s handy-work. The pictures don’t show them real well, but he lined the interior of these pictures with lights, painstakingly lining up and taping each light. One of these pictures (Easter) even includes a picture of Margie (my sister), Rodney (my brother), Deanna (Mom), and Yours Truly! Like most fathers, Dad was taking the picture; probably with his favorite Pentax camera. There was a lot of talent in those windows, but more than that there was a lot of LOVE!

This was the picture window at our house at 367 S. Christine in Westland, MI – We had some great memories in that home. I was 10 years old when we moved into that house and just after I graduated from John Glenn High School in Westland, we relocated to where my mom and dad currently live.

Thanks Mom and Dad for these memories!

Double-hearts Lit  Double Heart Day
St. Pat's Day
 St. Pat's Day