Rain, Rain, Rain

We've heard much of the storms that are ripping up some states near us…the horrible twisters and floods. I'm praying Jesus will bless all of those people suffering in storms – loss of home, things, and life. Often I think we do not feel enough for those suffering or in need – we tend to shake our head in sympathy, but turn a deaf ear. Until it happens to us, maybe?
Turn the Page please…..

A Day on the Farm

Hay Field after fertilizing
A day on the farm…..

To live…to love…to work…to grow…to survive….



They’re growing….preparing for raising kids and entering
the milking line themselves

Hard work pays off – this becomes cheese, butter, ice cream
or enters a variety of our everyday foods in its original state
More hard work – gardening is not easy, but the Lord
has blessed us with a good spot for
beans, corn, and okra this year (along with a few tomatos!)

Plants growing

Work = food

More work

To provide clothes for work…..

 

And Sundays

And more work….

For winter’s warmth

Hard work…preseverance…faith…endurance…
It takes all of this to live – but most of all…
It takes Love.

 Jesus Christ is Love

Dare to be a Daniel

I so often find myself pleading with Jesus – I try so hard to serve Him, to stand up for what I believe He’s convicted me of. It only seems to turn for bad…things get hard – hard. I go out in the woods, wondering the hills, lay down in the tall grass; it hides me with it’s stalks of green. I cry there.  

Is this worth it? a tiny doubt comes into my mind.
Oh Lord Jesus!
Something stabs me when such a doubt comes into my heart. No…I love Jesus. It’s not just that I know what He did for me on Calvary. I love Him for that very much. But that redemption power rarely enters my mind. No…it is not that I don’t appreciate or realize the depth of that great sacrifice. No. It’s just that that is not what pierces me. No.
Jesus is so close to me. I love Him. He is my friend, my Father. I would never dream of leaving my flesh Daddy – how much less my Heavenly Father! To know all the things He’s done for me…all the trials He’s brought me through.
Things get hard. But I could never back out. There’s something binding me to Jesus – something that fans a violent flame of loyalty in my heart. Sometimes it seems I am all alone – fighting a battle so greatly out numbered.
This is how I felt yesterday. I ran outside and cried and cried and cried – ’till I was actually afraid for myself (I suffer from mild asthma). I had to calm down. Catching my breath I started singing quietly. I felt a calm over my body and spirit as I sang the newest hymn Jesus has blessed me to find.
The chorus speaks to me as I struggle;

“Dare to be a Daniel
Dare to stand alone,
Dare to have a purpose firm,
Dare to make it known.”

“Jesus!” I cried, “I don’t know my purpose – I fight for convictions I can’t understand! I stand up for things I can’t even explain. Lord, I can’t talk – I can’t even write out how I feel and try to explain!”
Jesus.
His Name touched my lips even as I prayed.
Jesus.
He is my purpose.
Do we have to understand everything we do? Do we have to make logical sense out of everything – so our human minds can be content with the situation?
I was reading this morning in II Choronicles 25 about King Amaziah of Judah.
“And he did that which was right in the sight of the Lord, but not with a perfect heart.”
“Amaziah gathered Judah together…he hired also an hundred thousand mighty men of valour out of Israel for an hundred talents of silver. But there came a man of God to him, saying, ‘O king, let not the army of Israel go with thee; for the Lord is not with Israel. But if thou wilt go, do it, be strong for the battle; God shall make thee fall before the enemy: for God hath power to help, and to cast down.’ And Amaziah said to the man of God, ‘But what shall we do for the hundred talents which I have given to the army of Israel?’ And the man of God answered ‘The Lord is able to give thee much more than this’.”

So…Amaziah sent the Israelites back into Israel (without reclaiming the money). He and the army of Judah went on to fight a glorious battle over the inhabitants of Seir. The Lord faught for him because he obeyed and would not take the Israelites with him to battle – even if he had already agreed to take them, paid for their services, etc.
But…in the meantime the Israelites were angry. The money meant nothing to them – it was a slap in their face not to be allowed to fight like men. Before Amaziah and the people of Judah could return to their land the Israelites had attacked several cities in Judah, killing many innocent people and taking many goods from the cities.
On returning home to the devastation, to the ruin, to the peril that had followed his obediance to the Lord….Amaziah turned to worshiping the gods of the inhabitants of Seir – the country he had just taken in battle. He died shortly afterwards in another war.
This story spoke to me.
Amaziah, even defying all logic, stood for what he knew was right – he obeyed the Lord and sent the army of Israel back. The Lord blessed him. But…when trouble struck – something, in his mind, he thought the Lord should have protected him from because he had obeyed His commands – he turned his back on God.
Do I want to be like that? Or should I rather bury myself in my Father’s arms and cry to Him to save me from the storm? Shouldn’t I weather the trials? Shouldn’t I stay in the ship instead of jumping overboard – only to face greater peril in the water?
Jesus knows what His servants need. He’ll provide for us…despite everything. Even when things look like they couldn’t get worse. We must remember times of hardship will come – they are the fires we face that try us. They are the floods that water us. Only through peril can we grow in the knowledge of Jesus. Only through suffering do we learn anything. The more we grow, the more often we will suffer. The more we seek to learn of Jesus, the more trials come our way.
Let us embrace the times when Jesus thinks we are ready enough for a lesson – let us take advantage of these times of learning and throw ourselves on Him – that’s what He wants us to do.

Believe not those who say,
The upward path is smooth,
Lest thou should stumble in the way,
And faint before the truth.
To labor and to love,
To pardon and endure,
To lift thy heart to God above,
And keep thy conscience pure.
Be this thy constant aim,
Thy hope, thy chief delight,
What matter who should whisper blame,
Or who should scorn or slight?
If but thy God approve,
And if within thy breast,
Thou feel the comfort of His love,
The earnest of His rest.
 Poem by Anne Bronte

Der Sonntag Morgen Psalm

Praises and Exaltation
to a God Who is greater than man.


“Gott, es ist mein rechter Ernst; ich will singen und dichten, meine Ehre auch. Wohlauf, Psalter und Herfe! Ich will mit der Fruhe auf sein. Ich will dir danken, HERR, unter den Volkern; ich will dir lobsingen unter den Leuten. Denn deine Gnade reicht, soweit der Himmel ist, und deine Wahrheit soweit di Wolken gehen. Erhebe dich, Gott, uber den Himmel, und deine Ehre uber alle Lande. Schaffe uns Beistand in der Not; denn Menschenhilfe ist nichts nutze. Mit Gott wollen wir Taten tun; er wird unser Feinde untertreten.”

von Psalm 108
“O God, my heart is fixed; I will sing and give praise, even with my glory. Awake psaltery and harp: I myself will awake early. i will praise Thee, O Lord, among the people : and I will sing praises unto Thee among the nations. For they mercy is great above the heavens: and Thy truth reacheth unto the clouds. Be Thou exalted, O God, above the heavens: and Thy glory above all the earth…give us help from trouble: for vain is the help of man. Through God we shall do valiantly: for He it is that shall tread down our enemies.”

Traumen

To dream.
Everyone says I’m silly – I guess I am in a lot of ways, but…when you’re finished reading this maybe you can judge for yourself!

A one room cabin, a vast wilderness

Room to roam in summer …..

Or winter



Scant furnishings?

But…everything is useful and it’s cozy inside
Grow your own food – milk your own animals

Farming – homemade dress, heavy handmade shawl,
handmade bonnet, and a rather energetic calf
(but there’s a lot more to it than it looks!!!!)
Oil lamps add a glow of warmth to nightly Bible reading
All from the peace and quiet of a tiny one room cabin
in a vast wilderness.

Am I dreaming?
Can a life of peace, quiet, hard work, and close family really be achieved – even at such extremes as a cabin in a wilderness – in the fast paced world of the 21st century?

I will both lay me down in peace and sleep: for Thou, Lord, only makest me dwell in safety.
Psalm 4:8

House Guests!

We’ve had a new adventure – several really – since I last wrote. But… I want to focus on just one right now. 🙂 Our two new little house guests (or really barn guests!). Silas and Barnabas.

A very good friend of ours bought Silas as the sire for her herd of dairy goats, and Barnabas – a little wether – is his companion. Barnabas – unlike Silas- was not yet weaned when she bought him but usually you can get a kid to forget Mama and suck a bottle after sometime of working with him – not Barnabas. He’s a stubborn little fella!
She struggled with him, watching him loose weight, for the two or so weeks she’s had him. Finally we all agreed to bring him up to our farm so we could try our hands with him. We were praying that he’d take to nursing one of our does that are in milk (of course, they probably wouldn’t take to him at all…but, we have a milk stand. 🙂 ). If he wouldn’t we’d have the services of a very good veterinarian (another friend of ours) close by.


Little Barnabas seemed sad and withdrawn.

Well…after some inspection Carra and I realized little Barnabas wasn’t doing too well. He wouldn’t nurse – flatly refused a bottle, and overall was very withdrawn and uninterested. We were worried about him. He’s very small and has lost a lot of weight. It was clear if he didn’t take a substantial amount of nourishment soon he could slip into a danger zone.
Our vet said to try him on milk a little more and if by this evening, he didn’t improve we’d have to bring him over to the kennel and start IVs.
That didn’t sound too promising.
We tried to get him to suckle after coming home from working at a friend’s house for the afternoon. But Barnabas was stubborn. The milk – good, fresh goat’s milk – was sitting right there in a nice, clean, convienent bottle and he refused to drink it. I was half worried that he couldn’t suckle properly (we had a calf like that once), but it quickly became appearant that he simply didn’t want to drink anything. It’s frustrating. Carra reverted to the old force-feeding (we had to do that for ages with another calf we had….stress, stress, stress for everyone concerned!). We managed to get four ounces down him before he started coughing and closing his eyes (always scares me when they do that!). Silas couldn’t figure out what was wrong with his little friend – he watched as Carra held Barnabas and forced him to take the nipple; there wasn’t much fun in that, he guessed!


We worked with Barnabas – Silas looking on; he’s such a
people-goat. 🙂

Carra and I both looked at each other as Barnabas swallowed little bit by little bit. I was reliving the moments when we took our first calf to the vet for emergency IVs. That was a nightmare. We’d know better what to expect now but…little Barnabas would have to take a bottle eventually – he couldn’t survive on IVs.
“He has to swallow,” Carra observed blandly her eyes focused on the little kid, “The milk’s just running into his mouth.”
“I guess we should go eat us something and come back,” I suggested as we watched Barnabas struggle off Carra’s lap and stand in a corner like he was concentrating hard on his stomach.
After Carra and I ate a delicious supper with Mama (we were ravished!) we headed back to the barn. We walked the long walk down the hill from our house wondering, “Well, Lord, what’s this little fella going to do?”



Howdy everyone!
Says Silas.

Carra milked out a good bottle of milk, expecting to force feed Barnabas again. Well…she didn’t even get the bottle in his mouth before he started chewing all over her – trying to suck her ears and face. That’s a wonderful sign in a goat kid. We rushed to get him and one of our does in the barn. 

Success!

At first little Barnabas thought for sure Carra’s ear was the right gadget but…after some coaxing he found the teat and nursed viciously – I know he was hungrier than even we were at supper this evening! It was such a blessing to see him nursing. “No IV’s,” I thought as I watched him, “No IV’s!” That’s a relief!


Nap Time!

 Later we went back down for chores and, boy, did that little guy nurse. All three of our does took a turn at the milk stand – the only one he didn’t empty was Daisy, our big gallon milker! 🙂 Then… he cuddled up for a nap on Carra’s lap.   
 I feel pretty certian little Barnabas is just a stubborn little fella – he did NOT want anything to do with bottles and plastic. He wanted Mama. Thank Jesus, I think he’ll pull through just fine – if his tumy doesn’t pop with milk! 🙂
I like to look for lessons in things. I like to sit and think; pray about what Jesus may have to teach me in any given situation.
Little Barnabas is the perfect picture of a christian. No matter what he went through, how hungry he was, how thin he got, how bad he felt, or how many times that rubber nipple was poked into his mouth, he never gave in. He would rather starve than drink from that plastic bottle.

Isn’t that how we should be? Shouldn’t we fight with all the power Jesus is in us? Shouldn’t we turn a blind eye on our own sufferings, ignore our feelings and wants, never looking once at the conviences, beauty, fun the world has to offer us – shouldn’t we stand firm on what Jesus has told us to do, without waver; even if it kills us?

Though He slay me, yet will I trust in Him 
-Job   


Gruss!

Greetings everyone after a rather long period of silence. 🙂 I had a lot of posts to post but…a big storm around here has made things hard to keep in order – and with the electric off I’ve been unable to manage anything on my computer. 

Am I thankful for this spinning fan?

Tuesday night at about 1:19 or so I woke up to the sounds of banging. I thought it was five or five thirty. Groaning inside I turned over in bed so I could see my bedroom door – Carra would be in any minute, that was her bedroom door I heard shut. Suddenly I realized it was pouring rain…”well, Carra,” thought I, “what’s the sense in getting up – we can’t go out to do chores in this weather.” I heard another bang and my phone lit up on it’s stand near by door. “What’s she doing that for?” I picked my head up off the pillow, “She think that phone light’ll wake me up? It’s awful dim.” Straining my eyes through the darkness (plus the fog of astigmatisim and extreme nearsightedness) I never saw Carra. “Hmm…must be mad at me for some reason,” thought I, “She didnt’ even say anything. Just came in the door, hit a button on the phone and left.” A crash of thunder outside shook me. That phone came on from a lightning strike! All at once a loud thump on the roof above me shook the house around me and sent me flying out of bed, “Carra, Carra, Carra!” I hollared, tripping over the dog who had been sleeping in my room as I made an escape to my bedroom door. Lightning was pouring in endlessly through my bedroom windows, and thunder was crashing like cannon constantly, drowning my words. “What!” I heard Carra’s responce as I tore my bedroom door open, “I can’t see you! What!” Suddenly it struck me (as I flipped light switches on and off) – the power was out. Carra and I finally made contact and we made our way toward the front of the house where Mama and Daddy had both found their way too. It wasn’t five or five thirty; it was a little after one. Besides the large branch that had fallen over my bedroom, there was a huge, leafy corpse lying extended some hundred feet or so down our drive way. Rain was pouring, thunder and lightning was non-stop (did I mention that yet? 🙂 ), and the wind was raging at 70 – 80 mph. I’ve never seen wind bending trees like it was Wednesday morning. Meanwhile we all sat huddled in the den with flashlights listening to the – needless to say, discouraging – weather forcast over our two way radio, praying for protection for our family and everyone else caught in the path of this storm.

We were able to go back to bed in less than an hour, as the wind calmed down, but I think we probably all had a difficult time falling to sleep or resting. We were all up between five and five thirty – going out with flash lights to see the dammage.
I won’t try to explain it all; a picture is worth a thousand words.



Here’s the leafy corpse I saw on our drive!

Several (five or six) trees took a beating

YIKES!

Our gerage got it. EEE!!!

We were out of power from early Wednesday morning through late Thursday – along with roughly 100 more families in our area.
But I don’t think we should complain too much. The Lord Jesus has blessed us in many ways and though most of our time was spent trying to find a way to have a hot cup of coffe and improvising for meals, we weren’t hurt by any trees falling on our home – and even our barn and livestock was spared. We live practically in the woods with huge trees very close to the house (more than one leaning towards the house and barn!), so we can be very thankful the Lord has kept these elderly trees in the ground!
Besides, those couple days were fun in their way.



Oil lamps – I love them



Our grill served as a slow way to heat our coffee water – for instant coffee –
the first day. A couple friends of our brought us a whole – much appreciated – meal
that day. 🙂

The second day another friend of ours inspired us to be pioneers
and build a camp fire

Carra caught supper out of our pond and I warmed up the sides

She even cleaned the fish – yuk!

Then we ate – I’m starving, can you tell? 🙂



And we ate some more 🙂

It might have been tiring

And had it’s inconviences – but it was fun all the same 🙂

Thursday night Daddy got to eat his supper at home
in the LIGHT after coming home from work. 🙂
Thank Jesus!


So, blessings out of mishaps?

“O God, my heart is fixed; I will sing and give praise.”
Psalm 108:1

Musings Over a Knife

My Dad, like most men I guess, keeps things in his pockets that he’s attatched to – a comb, a knife – always little things that can be – and are – used regularly but things that also have some sentimental value to them.

Well, Daddy went to put his little fold-away knife in his pocket this morning and suddenly found it had strayed. A short inspection of his clothes told him that he’d worn a pair of worn out old pants on our fishing trip yesterday – which had a hole in the left pocket.
“I’m always careful not to put my knife in that pocket!” he told us all, but we all thought…’sigh’ if he slipped and put that knife in that pocket and it slipped and slid out at the pond yesterday…there’ll be no retrieving it.
This knife is really small – but it’s good at cutting up chicken livers for catfishing, slicing cheese, or pealing tomatoes. And even cutting someone’s arm off – which it bout did to Daddy once and that’s one reason why it’s special to him (but that’s a story for another time!). He’s had that knife for over ten years or better and well…when you keep a knife – or anything! – that long it sorta becomes somebody.
Daddy went out tracing his steps from yesterday. Pionie. There was a pionie out in the plant yard that he’d seen suffocating by a stray oak sappling which had taken up residence in it’s pot. He’d taken his knife out to cut the oak away. With hope building inside Daddy traced his work…nope, no knife.
“Where’s my knife Lord?” he mumbled a prayer out loud.
‘go check where you planted that pionie’ the thought popped into his mind.
“That wasn’t the Lord,” Daddy shook his head, but his feet took him to the little pionie plant anyways and WA-LA right there on the ground was his special, little knife!
“Thank You Lord,” Daddy stuffed the little knife in his pocket as a feeling of regret came over him, “I’m Your servant though – I shouldn’t be asking You to serve me!”
As Daddy walked along the plant yard, studying the flourishing hosta, bee balm, hummingbird flowers, etc., he started thinking. If the Lord cared enough to think about his knife, He certianly cared enough to think about any larger struggles we have in life.
Isn’t that just how a Father does things? He loves His children and will do things – even little things like helping them to find a knife – just because He loves them and wants them to trust Him.
Why do we look at God as a supernatural being in heaven somewhere? Why do we feel guilty asking Him for little things?
Oh the difference when Jesus becomes the believer’s Father!
Is Jesus Father in your life, yet?