The Crochet Lady

via The Crochet Lady

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There is a Time……

I just noticed that my last post was in June. I have missed writing. Ideas continue to blossom in my mind and soul of some truth, some experience or some new understanding I’ve found along my pathway through life.

I have a ASUS T-100 combo tablet, laptop, etc. It is compact and easy to take with me. But 5 keys on the keyboard decided that they were not going to work. So it took the joy out of speeding over the keyboard to write my next post. I have a digital keyboard but it so slows me down.

Then today at Walmart I found a USB driven keyboard and mouse combo. Now I’m back writing.

The therapy of writing is much more about how it benefits my spirit than anything else. I do hope that what I write is a blessing to someone but in today’s world there are so many places where we can get information, inspiration, direction, advice and on and on. I do not purport to be the expert on any of these things, by the way.

Every individual has a unique perspective on life, how to live it and what principles of life are the most important. Considering that, everyone has something to add to my perspective to make it more comprehensive and enlightened.

I’m 65 now and it seems it has given me a totally different perspective on what is important and what life is all about. I love life and enjoy all the aspects of my life in 2017. But want to learn all I can still. I feel that it is dangerous to settle into a status quo no matter what age I am.

I know there is a time for all things. There is a time for silence then there is a time to speak up. There is a time to write and share and there is a time to absorb from the writings of others.

So whatever time you are in, live fully in the moment. Tomorrow holds something different.

God of Light is in Our Night

Door-1God sees light in the clouds and order in our chaos. The night is God’s creation.  Within it is the blessing of rest from daily cares.  As we have fiscal nights so we have our personal nights–nights of pain, of doubt, of afflictions, and of loneliness.  During the night, the demons of evil attempt to overpower our faith.  But these nights carry with them the blessing of a rest in the arms of God.  Knowing who I am and whose I am keeps my focus on the Lord, rather than on the carcasses of the fearful and unhappy strewn along life’s pathway.

 

Job had his night when he lost his flocks, his children, his home, and his health.  Habakkuk had his night and cried out, “How long must I call for help…”  David had his night and pleaded with God, “Why standest thou afar off, why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble?”  Paul and Silas faced their night as they lay in jail with their clothes torn and their backs bleeding.

 

Wherever our night, God is there.  Whatever the darkness, the sunshine of His presence glows through.  However fierce the battle through the night, victory is mine through the Blood of Jesus.

 

Through the night, God’s saints gather comfort knowing that Satan cannot tamper with God’s “wills” and “shalls”.  As we, the Church, walk on through the night we will hear the bridegroom shout, “Behold, I come.”

Just a Funny Story….

I walked up to the large cooler of lemonade in a small room off the main reception area a few years ago at a social event I attended.  I filled my Styrofoam cup with the refreshing

Tiger

“Really? You didn’t understand that?”

beverage, then wrote my name on the side so that I could reuse it and save our environment from becoming destroyed by waste.

“Did you spell your name with a ‘sh’?” questioned a man standing behind me.

“Yes,” was my quick, surprised answer.

“Well, let me show you how to write it a different way,” he continued.

He proceeded to make some strange drawings below my name on my cup, then, he sounded out this strange word.  I found myself exclaiming, making surprised faces, and generally acting interested, but more concerned about quenching my thirst with my ice cold lemonade.  He still held it high explaining or talking about… well, I’m not sure what. I finally excused myself.  Visions of my full cup of ice cold lemonade floated through my mind during the next few minutes when I was occupied with serving the guests..  I wondered if the man with the curly, blond hair was still talking about his… well… you know whatever he was talking about because it didn’t appear that he even saw me leave.

Twenty minutes later, with overwhelming thirst, I found my full cup of warm lemonade sitting on the table.  I guess it was a while before he realized that I had left, for he had also drawn my last name in that strange Russian language.  I gulped my lemonade then stepped to the cooler to fill it and then I walked into the reception area again.  There he came.  I clutched my lemonade cup to my bosom.

He started to explain about the government or location of Russia or Ireland — I’m not sure which.

“Wow.  “I’m really impressed.  That’s remarkable.  “Did you say you were Russian?” I queried

“No, but the company made this monstrous aircraft…” he continued.  I guess he didn’t hear my question and I didn’t understand that he was not talking about Russia or Ireland.  He was telling me that his company made aircraft.

I was laughing inside but totally frustration showed on my face so I grabbed the first crack in the flow of words from this man and graciously thanked him for the intelligent information ( which I hadn’t understood the subject of the conversation nor the language) shared and excused myself to find another conversation partner.

People amuse me and even tho this happened many, many years ago, I think of it so often because I have found myself in similar situations. I say something and the person’s answer has nothing to do with what I said. I believe it has to do with our minds and the different ways they process information.

A counselor once told me a good technique to making sure conversation is understood by both parties is to repeat back to the person you’re talking with — “I understand that what you are saying is this……”

NOTE:  If your story is not making sense to your listener, please give the lemonade back before the ice melts.

“No More Letters from Mother”

Grandpa Finch

My Grandpa Finch

I fell heir to my dad’s copies of his dad’s letters to his children as they were scattered throughout the United States and around the world in ministry. Among them, I found a a piece that my grandpa, R. G. Finch Sr wrote after his mom passed away.

I know Mother’s Day has passed but it is still May and May is the month of mothers so I’m going to share it with you.

“I hope and pray that this article will be the means of saving someone, or man, from suffering as I have done since the funeral of my precious mother a short time ago. I feel that I failed her, and my loved ones, and the great crowd that filled the little white church that Sunday afternoon.  If I had the opportunity again, I would rise to my feet as the preacher sat down, step to the foot of her coffin, (I sat within six feet of it), face the congregation and say:

“I have known this little mother nearly forty-six years. I never saw her angry, but many times observed her eyes sparkle with mirth, joy and gladness, and, at other times, swim with tears caused by sorrow and suffering. One of my uncles told me sometime ago that she was always the life of the crowd. She would ignore and ride over her own sorrow to make others happy. My father died six years ago and Mother told me each time we met that she missed him more each year. Thiss she told but few, always hiding her shadows behind smiles and a cheerful voice.

“There is no doubt in my mind that her careful training held me from getting clear away from God in my teens. I could not bot out the picture of us children kneeling at her knees praying our ‘Now I lay me down to sleep…..”

“I saw her in crushing sorrow, alone with her little family, ack in the black-jacks of Tennessee when little Arlie — her baby — died.  Arlie, like Mother, was tender — full of pity and love.  Arlie did not know that the poor sick kitten she picked up and pressed to her little heart belonged to the little girl across the creek who was so sick with diphtheria.

“The little girl across the creek got well, but Arlie died. During the long months following, I would run into the house, as any child would, to tell Mother something or to ask for something only to find her on her knees in the pantry, weeping. Perhaps she would be scrubbing mixing the salty tears with scrub water. All this gripped my childish heart, until a picture of labor, suffering and prayer has followed me through the years. I saw labor necessary, suffering sure, and the only relief was prayer.

“As I walked home at the age of twenty after praying through at the night meeting, it suddenly dawned upon me that it had been years since I had put my arms around Mother, kissed her and told her that I loved her. Oh, I had been fairly good to her but she had washed my clothes, ironed my shirts and done all that she could being a mother of limited means, to make me happy but I had neglected what would have cost me nothing but would have meant so much to her.

“I felt so bad about this that I resolved the next morning to make up for lost time as much as possible. When Mother and I were alone, I slipped up behind her, clasped her hands and buried my face in her neck and told her she was the best and dearest mother in the world and that I was sorry for my neglect and carelessness. She tried to turn around to get hold of me but I was ashamed to have her see the tears rolling down my cheeks.

“She quivered with emotion while tears flowed down her cheeks as well. Ever since that morning she knew that she would get loved every time I came home.  Although my work took me far from home, I have tried to see her as often as possible. I recall the picture of Mother on the front porch with a clean apron and her face twitching with gladness, half-laughing, half-crying, stepping here and there because she knew her boy would soon be home to take her in his arms, to love her and kiss away unfortunate memories of his neglect through his teen-age years.

“I’m so sorry that I did not speak in this way at my father’s funeral. I can see him coming across the yard, wiping his mouth with the back of his hand, for he, too, knew that he would be kissed. Oh, for more love, more prayer, more old-time family altars, more Bible reading and more nestling up to God and the truth.

“No matter where I have gone, my mother’s letters have come as regularly as the seasons. When she did not know where to write me, she would send my letters to my home address and tell my folk to forward them.

“Mother taught me my first prayer. She gave me a life example of patience. She was a peacemaker. Ever since knowing a little of the Bible, I have coupled her with that verse in the ‘Sermon on the Mount’ which says, ‘Blessed are the peacemakers.’

“Mother is in heaven this lovely day. She has seen our Savior, met the loved ones who had gone on before and been greeted by them. I shall miss her letters, oh so much. I will not have her to draw me to old Indian Hill any more; but, Pearl and Roy, you are still here. Covenant with me to set our faces to go to that Home one day that Jesus went to prepare for us. Let us be true to our parents and faithful to our children.

“These are the words I wish I would have said that Sunday afternoon at her funeral, but I failed. I wish I had for my mother’s sake and for all the love she always gave me.

 

 

 

 

Penitence or Peace with our Past

Daisy & ButterflyJesus said for us to confess and He would forgive. It could be similar to a two-party contract. I have my part to do — confess — and Jesus has His part — forgiveness. This is not only for at the time of seeking our salvation even though it does apply to that. We are all imperfect people and even though I do not believe in the life of sinning in word, thought, or deed every other day, anyone  of us have the potential to make mistakes or commit sins.

Thankfully, Christ died on the cross to provide an abundance of forgiveness for your and my entire life when we confess. One thing, however, the equation of confession and forgiveness does NOT include is a never-ending debt of penitence for a lifetime.

Some years ago, I found myself doing a jail term of penitence because someone accused me of doing something I was not totally responsible for. I said I was sorry and asked for forgiveness. It was a couple years later that God gave me this verse, I John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” I took from that there is a point of confession and a point of forgiveness. God does not ask me to wallow for days and weeks and months or even years begging for forgiveness. No, I  confess and my Savior forgives.

Since that time, I fall back into the mindset of penitence from time to time. However, just because someone had given me a life sentence of penitence, does not mean that I have to serve that sentence. But I found myself through the years trying to do something amazing for the individuals involved so that the life sentence of penitence would be lifted.

Penitence keeps us indebted forever. Forgiveness washes away our sins and wrong doing in the sea of things forgotten. God is faithful to each of us and reminds us that sins confessed are forgiven by Him even though others do not forgive us. We have to allow the change to happen in our spirit just like the caterpillar transforms into a beautiful butterfly. This happens when we understand and partake of the great and bountiful forgiveness from our Heavenly Father.

My goal and desire is to live my life in freedom in mind, body and spirit. To do this I must remind myself that God’s forgiveness covers me continually. This is not only true for myself but for all God’s children. We do not have to spend our life doing penitence when God’s forgiveness flows like a river at flood tide.

Credit Where Due

Old Building-1I wrote yesterday about big or little jobs and no incentive and as I was thinking about it last night, I decided it needed a sequel. I’m speaking for myself but am thinking that I’m not alone so the reason for writing publicly. I see the negative, the job half done or the job not even started long before I see the jobs I’ve completed, the difficult project I waded through come high water or drought and all the jobs started and finished.

The plastic casing I referred to in yesterday’s post, after several attempts that failed, I figured out an ingenious plan. I screwed oversized hooks into my ceiling along the side of where the casing was to be positioned and now I simply slide it in between the ceiling and the curved up part of the hook. It sits there very nicely covering the AC filter.

I am going to remember to give myself credit where credit is due. Many projects take a long time to complete. So just because it is started, you and I deserve a pat on the back and a few words of praise.

When I was building my porch by my RV at its present location, I hauled load after load of cement blocks home and placed them, readjusted them then had to level them and even changed the size of what I was originally going to have for the porch. I did it by myself so it spread over several weeks. That was OK because a huge project was in process and let me tell you, I finished it, stained it and decked it out with a swing and flowers.

We need to commend ourselves about what gets done rather than continually “self-whipping” because the job or the project is not completed in one sitting, one day or one afternoon. Give credit where credit is due and that is for each step of the way.

You might call it multi-tasking or a boredom avoidance technique but whatever the title sometimes it works to  have multiple tasks “in progress”. I have four afghans started. I had three house projects in the works, but just finished the glass painting on the kitchen cupboard inserts so now it’s just two in progress. When I get stuck on one, I can switch over to another. Or if I get bored with one, I take a break and work on something else.

Again learn to bask in the satisfaction of a job progressing nicely or completed. Self talk is very powerful — if it is negative or if it is positive. It is important to cultivate a vocabulary of positive, praise, and complementary words. Negativity seems to overgrow any garden without any effort so the insertion of positive praise-worthy words must be purposefully engaged in.

Praise yourself today no matter where in the project process you’re involved in. Indulge in praise worthy self talk. Who knows it may smooth out the many wrinkles you are concerned about in looking forward.