Fewer things I enjoy less than washing windows. Especially the outside of the house with ladders and cleaner to juggle. It is monotonous, boring, tedious, like counting rocks in a ten acre rock garden. So, I decided to make it a game, in true Mary Poppins style. Relying on my aggressive competitive nature, I am going to see how fast I can finish the windows and still get them spotless. I will make it fun. It will be fun. Muah ha ha. These windows will not defeat me. I will show them. ❤
One of the joys (insert sarcasm) for me in turning 43 was a new, lovely (more sarcasm) fuzziness of things/words close to me. So now I have the luxury (yep, here too) of wearing reading glasses when I read or quilt, etc. Woo hoo! And one day, I put my glasses on to quilt and things were still fuzzy. I read and the words were fuzzy. So, assuming my eyesight was worsening, I started to be annoyed until I realized that my glasses had been smudged by fingerprints or some other obnoxious thing. I cleaned them and all was right again (or as right as possible having to wear reading glasses-Oy!). And I realized that we do that in life too. We see things flawed or skewed when in reality, we have some issues to clean up in the lenses of our minds. You see, how we view the world has everything to do with (directly proportional to) how much we clean up our hearts and minds. Truth is the great cleaning tool for this, found in the Bible, with a healthy heaping of love and prayer with God. When purified/cleaned, we see things differently, and our goal is to be so pure we see with the eyes of Jesus Christ. Then we understand what we need to do to help and why and how. This is a truly fantastic thing! ❤❤❤
I wanted to pause from my quilting and just praise God from my heart for all the joys He has placed in my life. There are way too many to mention, but I need to give Him props and thank Him for a few that stand out. All my life I wanted to be a doctor (well since I was 9), and He fulfilled that passion for me. And as a professional woman, I wondered if I would be too old to have my own kids or adopt (both are beautiful and either would have sufficed) and He answered by allowing me to carry two beautiful babies. One I look forward to seeing in heaven, she would be 22 years old, maybe with children of her own by now, who knows but she will be my Heavenly blessing, as well as my twin brother and family up there already. Therefore, Heaven to be assured of and look forward to is a great blessing! The love of my life is a major blessing. I never thought I could love anyone so deeply and fully and know so well and click with so intrinsically. I didn’t think before meeting him that soulmates was a real thing. He has blessed my life. Of course also hurt me, so every good thing has its down side. I am blessed by growing up on a farm with a Christian family who took us to the best church. Oh how I loved that farm! Only another farmer can truly get that but the hard work was replete with rewards of bird in song, glimpses of foxes at play, skies that changed all the time, deer accepting you as a friend, dogs running with you in the field, the feel of dirt and long grasses, better than any bed, swinging on ropes to the rafters in the barn off straw bales, riding on the tractors or combine with Daddy, the smell of fresh air and taste of fresh vegetables. The list goes on. My spirit was the most free there outside on the farm. Mmmm. Let me just take that one in a minute. I have been blessed being able to homeschool our kids and have a husband supportive of that. What a difference it makes to spend time with your kids!!! I am blessed each time I sit down at the piano and can play anything I want to or write original songs. (My fantasy, ideal cabin has a piano, by the way. Lol) I am also blessed to do art, see art, teach art, just express myself, write, everything that shares passions and ideas with another person is beautiful. Anyway, I could go on all night, but this partial list is what God chooses to flood my heart with joy and peace and love and calm. Some blessings are worth thinking of and revisiting for better perspective and appreciation of life and God, and some are worth waiting for. ❤
Jeremiah 10:2. ‘This is what the Lord says: “Do not learn the ways of the nations or be terrified by signs in the heavens, though the nations are terrified by them. 3. For the practices of the peoples are worthless; they cut a tree out of the forest, and a craftsman shapes it with his chisel. 4. They adorn it with silver and gold; they fasten it with hammer and nails so it will not totter. 5. Like a scarecrow in a cucumber field, their idols cannot speak; they must be carried because they cannot walk. Do not fear them; they can do no harm nor can they do any good.” 6. No one is like you, Lord; you are great, and your name is mighty in power. 7. Who should not fear you, King of the nations? This is your due. Among all the wise leaders of the nations and in all their kingdoms, there is no one like you. 8. They are all senseless and foolish; they are taught by worthless wooden idols. 9. Hammered silver is brought from Tarshish and gold from Uphaz. What the craftsman and goldsmith have made is then dressed in blue and purple— all made by skilled workers. 10. But the Lord is the true God; he is the living God, the eternal King. When he is angry, the earth trembles; the nations cannot endure his wrath. 11. “Tell them this: ‘These gods, who did not make the heavens and the earth, will perish from the earth and from under the heavens.'” 12. But God made the earth by his power; he founded the world by his wisdom and stretched out the heavens by his understanding. 13. When he thunders, the waters in the heavens roar; he makes clouds rise from the ends of the earth. He sends lightning with the rain and brings out the wind from his storehouses. 14. Everyone is senseless and without knowledge; every goldsmith is shamed by his idols. The images he makes are a fraud; they have no breath in them. 15. They are worthless, the objects of mockery; when their judgment comes, they will perish. 16. He who is the Portion of Jacob is not like these, for he is the Maker of all things, including Israel, the people of his inheritance— the Lord Almighty is his name.’
Rich Mullins, my favorite singer/songwriter, wrote and sang a song called “Never Picture Perfect” about his family growing up on a farm. I viously I could relate to that. The crux of it was that it never is picture perfect, always hard work, good love and real life and it is beautiful and works. Life is messy. There are no perfect families or people or businesses or anything. But there is great beauty in a whole lot of things and life is beautiful despite its perfection limitations. When you let go of the perfect goal and find contentment in the good and beneficial and workable things or people or whatever, you reach an exquisite level of maturity that defies logic and shoots the legs out of modern theories of happiness. Happiness is a choice. I can focus on the flaws and missing and be debilitated and hardened by it or be just plain annoying or toxic about it or make the very best of the matter, flaws and all, knowing the building of character and resourcefulness covers a multitude of flaws quite well. And that, my friends, is luxurious. ❤
There is a quandary about life. There is this law in physics that what goes up must come down. And I believe that carries over to be true in our lives also. We have highs and lows in life with varying extremes of each intermingled. One moment I was happy my parents moved to Florida and the next thing I know Daddy had a massive stroke and started a slow descent until he died, and while that was happening mom broke her hip and I instantly became caregiver to both parents while in two bands with practices, two kids to care for and homeschool, a husband unhappy with my frequent necessity to care for someone else’s household. Come to think of it, it is only the grace of God I survived at all. That was Really low. Then there are times like in an amazing relationship where you feel fully alive and happy and the best internally you have ever felt, where one kiss makes your whole body just glow, a huge up. And there are always ups and downs like this. No matter how you have managed to control everything and keep it calm to the public, there always dreamed ups and downs inside. We are comprised of a delicate yet durable blend of hormones and neurons and synaptic activity and glands and actions and reactions and chemical and magnetic and charged particles trying to stay balanced but sometimes needing not to be to work and so on. That is the physical and mechanical and emotional part of us. We also have a spiritual element that supercedes all of this. We have tugs and pulls of conscious, pride, moral conflicts, guilt, fatigue, wrestling against spiritual attacks, up moments of humble worship, down moments of losing battles with sin. There is no wonder we have ups and downs both physically, mentally and spiritually. The thing is that this all has a purpose. Sometimes it is to build our humility and dependence on God, sometimes it is to grow our flawed character into goodness, sometimes it is a test of character, sometimes it is to mature and deepen our wisdom or understanding. There is always a purpose for the ups and downs and to be truthful, some ups are as much a test as the downs. The key is to find the lesson or goodness, humbly acknowledge and correct yourself and move on with a teachable heart, “What’s next? Bring it on!” Then humbly pray. If you can stay humble the battle is half over before it starts. And God can take care of any and everything so stay close to Him, arming yourself with prayer and truth of God’s Word. And there you go, the recipe for success through the ups and downs of life. God and you got this!! No worries! ❤❤❤
Pride is the primary reason for all the evils of this world, of which we all see regularly now. Pride says “Me!” Pride puts self or something pleasurable on a pedestal and strokes the ego to justify the lifting of that to God status, called the old fashioned word “idolatry” in the Bible. Pride says “I am more important”, “I deserve this”, “I want it”, or “I certainly deserve it more than they do” and on and on the lies go. Salesmen tickle our ears with it, media caters to it, social media pushes and reinforces it soundly, we are solo artists in a bowl of soup with other solo artists but there is no orchestra anymore. Pride lies and destroys. Nothing is more destructive than pride. Nothing. Not one thing. And nothing will keep people from humbly admitting and confessing sins in prayer to God for salvation more than pride. So pride then will keep more people from heaven and drive them to hell. So pride is the enemy within. It must be minimized. It must be thwarted. I must drive pride out of my heart and put humility and the Holy Spirit on the pedestal He deserved. We must make our hearts a pure and classy, clean, inviting throne for God to dwell. We must love and serve, smile, make eye contact with, encourage people for God loves that not so pride gets puffed up. God is everything. Pride must then become nothing.