New Adventures and a Simple Lesson

I have never considered myself a very “quick” person. I learn – and comprehend – things very slowly.
I also have very little confidence, which is, indirectly, a reason why I take so long to learn things. I’m afraid I’ll make some mistake, or mess something up, or hurt something. So I don’t just avoid doing things, unless I know exactly what I’m doing.

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Just now, at work, I finished putting up all the receptacle/switch covers and then remembered Mama had mentioned that the bathroom lights needed put up.
I have never bothered with putting up lights. It’s just one of those things I figure I can’t do.
Granted, even today, I didn’t do any wiring, and these lights are almost too simple, but I did put it up without any thoughts on “what if I mess up?” Or “what if its not right?”
I just did it.

I have been praying a lot today and seeking The Lord. Not particularly about work, but just about my life in general.
Putting up this light He showed me again how focusing on Him – on His Will, His Way – allows us to think less of ourselves, our inabilities, to pity and worry about ourselves less, and allows Him to work through us, even in day to day life on things as simple as putting up a light.

He can become everything to us, day by day, if we keep our hearts and minds on Him, and our eyes focused on His Way – the strait and narrow way before us.

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Thankful Thursday – with a few words on how unthankful I am.

“Save me, O God; for the waters are come in unto my soul. I sink in deep mire, where there is no standing: I am come into deep waters, where the floods overflow me. I am weary of my crying: my throat is dried: mine eyes fail while I wait for my God.”

Psalm 69:1-3

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I was going to write a post about our soapmaking this morning, as we unmolded our first designed soaps last night and Carra and I are so excited about them, but I just couldn’t get the words to come.

I kept remembering today was Thursday, and generally the day for my Thankful Thursday posts if I’m keeping up with my blog as I ought, and I feel the Lord is impressing on me to write one, especially because this week in particular has been so hard for me – for us all, but I speak for myself.

Everyday this week has dealt our family a new struggle of some sort, and as we’ve drudged through each day I’ve felt there is little in my life to cause me joy or to be thankful for – I wonder often what it feel like to be truly happy again.

But whenever – well, usually… – I write to my silent friend, or I scribble on this blog it makes me feel so much better as I find myself seeking the Lord to guide me in my writing – and my words to my silent friend often become written prayers.

I leave my writing feeling refreshed, renewed, and closer to my Jesus.

Because, through my writing, I have been seeking Him.

What if I were to seek Him so everyday, through the difficulties and troubles – not just the good moments and easy times – and truly seek His Word and seek His Face, not rely on my own strength and ability to handle a situation?

If I were to do this with my everyday life as well as I do it with my pen, how much more joy would be mine – in Him. For in Him are all things good, and in Him is Life bound up. If we don’t seek Him – every moment of every day – we are seeking of ourselves to live life by our own methods and natural ability. Thus, we fall into traps, we trip over rough places, and we become disillusioned by the difficulties when we find ourselves bogged down in the mire of this world.

This week I have so much truly to be thankful for.

Even if I haven’t known it or claimed any of it.

  • The right to come before my Jesus, to seek Him as I would seek an earthly friend, to trust Him as my Beloved – my Protector, my Guide.
  • His Ability to be with me, to instruct and guide me each moment; to protect me and be my Joy and Grace – despite what my flesh tells me is wrong or is right.
  • My life. The fact that I’m actually living and breathing – all by His Will! If He did not desire it, I wouldn’t even be here writing this today.
  • My family. We are all healthy and well, still able to work with our hands.
  • Our farm. Its still here! We can spend time with our animals, and are refreshed each time we visit the barn.

The Lord Jesus knows what is best for us – way before we even see things coming.

He knows how He will deal with problems before they even arise in the dimmest of our imaginations.

If Jesus can raise a man from the dead, if He can still storms – if He can protect people when terrific, deadly tornadoes rip through entire hospitals and schools and homes – why can’t He deal with our little problems day to day?

He can!

But only if we believe.

A Look Back, So We Can Look Ahead

“For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but them shall I know even as also I am known. 

And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.”

I Corinthians 13:12-13

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Going through pictures yesterday, I was reminded of how things change.

I guess everyone is inclined to do that when they look through pictures – even if their not really old, per se.

I was looking through pictures of a couple years ago. 2011.

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Carra was 18, I was 19, going to turn 19 and 20 later on in the year.

Daddy had taken a day job in town for the first time in our memories, and us girls were at home most of the time; cooking, canning, and doing things we later would come to love (though at the time it was mainly work).

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 This was the year we began doing some outside jobs; four or five in this year actually.

Daddy had begun working on getting his GC license again and we were picking up a few small jobs for individuals.

Earlier in the year we had traveled so far as Statesville NC to work.

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It was also the year of the big snow (something very rare for South Carolina!).

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That was the last time I remember sledding – and the first time I remember sledding since 2003 when we had a huge snow over in Gaffney, SC.

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Our herd of goats was still small; Daisy, her two daughters Joy and Princess, and our buck Silver. We had scores of chickens though! And we loved every minute of chores. 🙂 I don’t think the goats liked the snow as much as we did though! 😀

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It was the first year we had more than one goat give birth at once (and the last year that kidding season was not so exhausting). It was also the year our little Rosie was born. 🙂

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We would take long walks on the dam behind our house, Carra and I together, and K would read to me.

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We had a special mothers’ day – of course, this was before we knew how much we would need to use that grill when a huge storm came through shortly afterwards and took away our electricity for two or three days! 😀

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Things were changing in our family; so slowly, but they were.

We weren’t always happy with the changes, but come they would, and the things that went on in this year, and the years before that, the Lord put within our lives to change us into better servants for Him.

Of course we didn’t know it at the time, and still are not often aware of it when He is working.

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I could go on and on about the changes of 2011. The things we went through; all the learning we did – a lot of it in cooking and canning! We had tons of pickles that year and preserves.

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Carra, I’m sure you’ll remember this blurry picture!

We thought this was the very pits of life, didn’t we? The month or more we spent at this home, working – and learning so much about our work!

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Glazing windows.

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And painting them – then trying to get them unstuck! 😀

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We thought this was just the worst part of our lives that could be imagined.

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It was the first time in 11 years that my sister and I ventured to have separate rooms.

And it worked.

Mainly because one sister was on the computer a lot at the time, while the other wanted to sleep!!

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And though we thought we were so, so unhappy….

We can look back now and see the joy that’s hidden in these pictures; the joy we didn’t really know that we had.

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It was a year of learning; of doing things we’d never done before, of experiencing changes we never imagined would come, and of touching new relationships that for a while seemed to send our family on rollercoasters – when really all the were doing was showing us hills and valleys that weren’t really all that deep or tall.

If only we could have seen this then.

If only we could have seen the Lord’s Hand in our circumstances, and learned then to love everyday as if it were our last, and to put our most into each moment for the glory of our Lord Jesus and the love of each other.

If only we could have seen this then.

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And today; as we work…trudging through hours of labor we outright despise, having no time at home as we think we ought, and struggling with relationships – within our family and without – as well as laboring in our own personal relationships with our Jesus….

If today we would just look up.

If we would take a lesson from our past.

All those hours we could have enjoyed and rejoiced in, even in trials and trouble, if only we would have seen Jesus’ working.

And what of today?

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In the simple things in life – and the most difficult – He is still here, still working.

Why can’t we just trust Him?

Why don’t we ever learn this lesson?

Instead of being downcast and depressed and drug down because of tribulation and struggles? Why can’t we embrace these hardships and hold onto Christ, knowing His is always a better plan?

Mobile Blogging…being a teen…growing up…and other things.

Well…unlike I figured…I have a nice deal of time on my hands today with which to write a blogpost – even mobile. 🙂 actually I have a LOT of time today!

The surgery is taking the whole day, so far as can be told right now, so everyone is sitting around talking, doodling, and otherwise killing time while we pray for Randy in the operating room and trust the Lord’s Hand will guide the surgeons as they work.

It’s a wet, chilly day today.
It was even worse at 2:00am when we got up!!

That’s writing-worthy!

As I may have mentioned before, I am more of a night type person. I like to stay up late, reading or writing. Getting up before the sun is not usually my favorite way to start the day. I don’t mind sometimes…but 5 is about as early as I can handle.

Well…in order to see Randy before they took him back to surgery, we had to make it 150 miles or so by 7:00am.
Which meant, in order to get chores done, we had to get up at TWO!

So…up at 2, chores at 2:30, breakfast 3:30, then on the road by 4:07. A two and a half hour drive and we’ve been in Winston Salem, at the baptist hospital since 6:44.
Thank the Lord we did get to see Randy before they took him back – but just before. He got ere just a few minutes after us and they took him in less than half an hour later!

Now we’re in the dreaded hours of waiting…aching…praying…starving…bored…waiting…praying…aching…thirsty…getting lost in the hospital…..
The list goes on.

But we’re enjoying it – despite the circumstances and the tiredness! It’s nice to see our relatives again, get caught up on the bits of news we’ve missed, and see Randy’s boys again.

Trai and Thomas have certainly grown – even since my first mention of them on my blog a couple years ago!
Watching them play games, organize their collection of miniature cars and trucks (and planes!), draw (and very well, I might add!), study up on their homework, etc. it reminds me of when I had just turned a teen (and a little younger).

13.
That was a beautiful year.
It should be really; the child is growing, feeling his age, learning more about life, but still young enough to enjoy it – all of it, not just parts of it like adults! – in their simplicity.

Hmm…
When I turned 13, my family was in the middle of moving to a new home, I was thoroughly enjoying both piano and writing, was busy with my school lessons, and only had the responsibility of my four year old cat and partial responsibility of our four dogs.
I and my sister took up violin that year and The Lord truly blessed that. Besides Mamas attempt to teach us guitar when we were six or seven, learning violin was our first experience with a stringed instrument. It was a LOT of work, but The Lord planted the desire to play so deep in our young hearts that it took off like wildfire and despite the aching necks and fingers, we learned quickly and loved every minute of it!

It was also the year that the Lord blessed our young bee farm; our whole family spent a LOT of time tending the bees, building supers, catching swarms, harvesting honey, and talking talking, talking about bees.

It was a year of learning, changing, expanding my mind (not through reading, I add, my affair with reading had already waned), experiencing new things and meeting new people.

I did not write much in my diary that year. I didn’t like where we were living, I thought everything exciting had been left behind at our old home. So, I didn’t care to write much about my life (I just wrote stories) though now I wish so much I had documented more about my first year as a teenager. (Though I do not in any way regret the hours I spent scribbling stories. The Lord taught me more in that year – and in the next two or three – about writing than I think I ever learned mechanically since.)

13 was a good year for me – I might not have felt so at the time – but looking back, it was a very good year.
But isn’t every year like that?
Every year we should appreciate the Lord’s working in our lives – no matter what we see in our natural sight. His work is so much greater than our ideas – our biggest dreams are so time compared to His plans for us.

May we learn to love each day, each month, each year as a gift from our Savior.
One day we WILL look back and see His Hand in our lives where before we saw only trouble and trials, and we will lift our hand in Praise to His Providence.
But how much more wonderful our lives would be if we could become conscious of this WHEN it is happening!

“For with Thee is the Fountain of Life: in Thy Light shall we see Light. O continue Thy Lovingkindness unto them that know Thee; and Thy Righteousness to the upright in heart.”
Psalm 36:9-10

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Five Minute Friday

Five-Minute-Friday.

A blog idea where you pick a subject and write about it for five minutes.

Simple, huh?

I got the idea from my dear sister, Carra, and have decided to try to implement it onto my blog – some, if not most Fridays…we’ll see how it goes! 🙂

My first topic for Five-Minute-Friday is the one who gave me the idea, my sister, Carra. 🙂

So, here are my five-minute thoughts about my sister, Carra. 🙂

These are out-of-order, as you can see, but I decided to leave them they way they are.

The added-in thoughts are in italics.

Enjoy!

  • Loves to crochet. {She has crocheted some of the most beautiful work I’ve ever seen. I think, if she were back in France in the 18th century, someone would track her down and pay her some very fine fortune to make lace for the Versailles – sounds silly, but I really mean it!}
  • Loves to help others – even to a fault at times. {Sweet Carra, before you protest, you must confess, helping has gotten you into some…well….. 😀 }
  • Is out going – she drags me to things that are really very good for us, but that I’d otherwise shun if not for her willingness to try something new. {Like…ahem…that small ruminant convention up in western NC. I would have never gone if not for K. Thanks, sissy!}
  • Loves to cook – Oh! does she love to cook! {Cakes, sweets, main dishes, side dishes, dessert dishes – anything that’s difficult and complicated is game for her!}
  • Decorates cakes. {Lovely. And someone’s birthday is coming up…time to start thinking and having fun with sugar and color again!}
  • Can figure math in her head like a whiz. 🙂 I don’t even try to compete (unless I have a calculator! 🙂
  • Will drive us places, even if she doesn’t particularly want to drive, because she knows I don’t like to drive. {Isn’t she so sweet – but you should tell me when you don’t want to drive more, sissy! I’ll drive for you.}
  • Is very giving; she’ll give her time, her effort, her things, her work to others with so much love. {Crocheted afgahns, blankets, tablecoths (and these aren’t cheap gifts if you were to buy them!}
  • Loves farming. I think that’s her truest love in life (apart from her service to her Savior!) is her farming. She loves working with the goats, dreams of farming a cattle dairy with hundreds of cows, loves the hard, hot work, the quiet days.
  • Loves to read. {When she has a good book you can hardly tear her from it!}
  • Loves to write poems.
  • Loves to play music. {Piano, Violin, and singing; she has a beautiful singing voice.}
  • Loves to meet new people.
  • Loves. {She loves to just love people; her family and friends, people in need. One day this gift will be used, sissy! Just trust Jesus for it!} 

And that’s one of my two very dear sisters in a five-minute nutshell. 🙂

 Love you bunches, K!