God Sightings

I feel as though I have been in the presence of the Almighty today, watching Him at work.   The children and I were at our homeschool coop today for classes, when suddenly we heard the sound of loud, soul wrenching crying.  It was from a new mom who had just learned that a beloved brother had just passed away.  We gathered around her for support and to lift her in prayer.  The story she told us isn’t mine to tell, only know that she had abundance of reason to feel close to this brother.  As the peace which only God can bring began to settle over her, she revealed that after years of hard living, her brother had asked Jesus to be his Savior within the last couple of weeks.  Although we can never really be ready for any death, she found comfort knowing that her brother’s death was carefully watched over by the Lord himself. (Ps. 116:15)

Later that afternoon, I received a call from my sister informing me of a one-year-old baby who had just been taken to the hospital by ambulance with seizures, becoming unresponsive to the paramedics, then finally ceasing breathing altogether and asking me (and the other mothers there) to pray.  She called me back this evening to tell me that she had been to the hospital to see the parents and that the child was going to be just fine.  I don’t know how, but I know Who.  That is God at work.

As we left coop this afternoon, the weather had turned from rainy to snowy and the skies were very gray.  I looked, but saw no one coming so I pulled out on to the highway only to have a dark blue pickup truck (without his lights on) pull around me to the right (and almost going in the ditch himself) at road speed to avoid hitting us.  Even with all our seatbelts and carseats and airbags, that could have been a very ugly accident, yet God in His mercy protected us all.

I thought this was the end of my God sightings for the day, until I told my stories to John.  It turns out he was working on a tractor, trying to jump start it.  He was successful, but one of the men who works for us had left it in Reverse, so when the engine started, the tractor started backing up.  Not only did John have to get out of the way to avoid being run over, but he had 30 feet to somehow jump into the moving tractor and regain control before it crashed into our machine shed wall.  Farming is not for the faint of heart.  It can be a very dangerous business, yet God was with him as well and he was able to stop the tractor in time.

For more God sightings, please go here.  It is the EFCA’s website and effort to share how God is at work in ordinary lives every day.

Press On

I’ve been feeling rather tired lately.  It’s not surprising…physically my body craves rest as it is getting ready for the birth of our child.  Emotionally, I’m still very much a hormone soup.  Unfortunately, as I’ve become aware of the problem of complaining in our home, I can pretty much guess who the kids are modeling after (guilty!) and in times of “honest communication” with my dh, I’m none too pleased with what has been coming out of my mouth at times.  Something, no Someone has got to change and that change has got to start with me. 

As I was perusing some of my favorite blogs this afternoon, I came across the following at the Rebelution:

“It is a lot like the popular illustration in which a speaker will invite a member of the audience onto the stage, usually a guy who thinks he is Arnold Schwarzenegger, and ask him whether or not he can lift some small object, such as a canned food item. Once the participant confidently asserts his ability to do so the speaker requests that he hold the item straight out from his body and continue to do so until the speaker tells him to stop.

While the participant might initially feel confident he quickly begins to realize that it requires more and more effort with every passing second to keep the object in the air. The test of strength is not to ask him to lift some extraordinary amount of weight, but instead to hold a small amount of weight for an extended period of time.

This is the way it sometimes works with small things. As we are faithful in small things God will always ask more of us, but not always by giving us bigger things to do. Instead He might do so by asking us to remain faithful in the small things we are already doing.

As impressive as bigger (i.e. heavier) things may be, the greatest test of strength is to endure with whatever weight you’ve been given. God can be just as glorified by someone who endures to the end with five pounds than He can by someone who lifts 500 pounds once. That’s the kind of God we serve.”

Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.  Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it.  But one thing I do:  Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which god has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”  (Phil. 3:12-14, emphasis mine)

Thank you Father, with Your help I will press on.

To My Husband on Valentine’s Day

valentine2.jpg

 

 

 

The example you set of love in action on a daily basis humbles me.  You truly follow Christ’s example of laying down your life for me in a million little ways every day.  You may not think I notice them, but I do, and they make me Want to be a better woman and a better mother, better wife.

 I could not imagine a better life than the one I have with you.  There is not another woman in the world with whom I would exchange places, even for a day.   And after all these years, it still makes me giddy to think that out of all the women in the world,

            You                         Chose                                    Me. 

A Valentine’s Poem

valentine.jpg  Here is a Valentine’s poem sent to me by my friend Linda.  Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!!

Jesus does not send perfume To linger in the air
 Instead He sends salvation, sweet To show how much He cares.
 He doesn’t bring me candy hearts In boxes of delight
 Instead He always lets me know I’m precious in His sight.
 He doesn’t pass out pretty cards Trimmed in shades of red
 Instead He gave His life for me His precious blood was shed.
 He doesn’t hand out fancy gifts Like we would send to mother
 Instead He sends a message clear To always love each other.
 He doesn’t give me teddy bears That whimper, please be mine
 Instead He gave His heart to me I wear it all the time.
 He doesn’t give me roses, pink For all the world to see
 Instead He gave eternal life That’s good enough for me.

Book Giveaway!!

Randy Alcorn is probably my favorite all-around author.  We studied his book Pro Life Answers to Pro Choice Arguments (Now retitiled Why Prolife) as a Sunday School Class, my husband is currently reading Heaven in preparation for leading a similar Sunday School series, and we have several of his others on our shelves as well.

Mr. Alcorn is giving away three copies of my all-time favorite book Safely Home this month on his blog.  To enter, simply go here and leave a comment.  If you don’t have a blog, leave your email address in the comment so they can contact you.  The deadline to enter is Friday, February 22.

Of Sparrows

sparrow.jpg  Can I just tell you sparrows are not my favorite bird? They are unattractive, they eat like pigs at my birdfeeder, they poo all over my van (whether it is in the garage or not), and there are soooo many of them that they constitute a genuine biohazard on our farm. Sparrows are the number one reason that John teases me that my attempts and feeding and watching the birds are nothing more than a glorified welfare system. They are in short, very, very common.

 cardinal.jpg  I much prefer the majestic cardinal.  He is not overly eager to show himself, but the brilliant red of his plumage makes each visit worth noticing.  Even Mrs. Cardinal, who is much less colorful, carries herself with a certain amount of dignity.  While the sparrows eat with wild abandon, spilling bird seed everywhere, the cardinal couple are much more careful and are just as content with an ear of corn leftover from harvest as they are with the sunflower seed I set out just for them.

blue-jay.jpg  I am also a fan of the blue jay.  He is less shy than the cardinals, but does not overstay his welcome.  His bright blue feathers brighten up the dull winter days and year after year I have found him to be a faithful visitor.  He is a little naughty, chasing the other birds away, but I find it easy to forgive him.

 yellow-finch.jpg  In the summer, we like to look for the yellow finch, splurging on the special thistle seed they favor (although I’ve found they also like the sunflower seed I set out).  The brilliant yellow contrasting with his black and white wings is quite remarkable.  Watching the finches eat has long been a favorite summer pasttime here on the farm.

sparrow2.jpg  “But who are you, O man, to talk back to God?  Shall what is formed say to him who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’  Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for noble purposes and some for common use?”  Romans 9:20-21  “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny?  Yet not one of them falls to the ground apart from the will of your Father.  And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered.  So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.”  Matt. 10:29-31  “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them.  Are you not much more valuable than they?”  Matt. 6:26

Hmmm…..I guess when I think about it, I would much rather be a common, unremarkable sparrow resting in my Father’s hand than the most beautiful bird in the world.