Sunday, June 13, 2021

Weekend Words

 From Be Still and Know...


"The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want." - Psalm 32:1

"I shall not want" means "I shall not lack" 

I shall not lack REST - "He maketh me to lie down in green pastures."

I shall not lack REFRESHMENT - "He leadeth me beside the still waters."

I shall not lack REVIVING - :He restoreth my soul."

I shall not lack GUIDANCE - "He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake."

I shall not lack COMPANIONSHIP - "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me."

I shall not lack COMFORT - "Thy rod and thy staff they comfort me."

I shall not lack SUSTENANCE - "Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies."

I shall not lack JOY - "Thou anointest my head with oil."

I shall not lack ANYTHING - "My cup runneth over."

I shall not lack ANYTHING IN THIS LIFE - "Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life."

I shall not lack ANYTHING IN ETERNITY - "and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever."

Once a little boy was taught the first sentence of Psalm 23 by his uncle.  The uncle said, "The Lord is my shepherd."  The small child repeated it.  Thinking this was as much as the boy could remember, the uncle said, "That's enough."  The little fellow repeated, "That's 'nuff."  From then on whenever asked to repeat the verse he would say, "The Lord is my shepherd - that's 'nuff."

The Lord is MY shepherd, all the days of MY LIFE.


Sunday, June 6, 2021

Weekend Words

From Be Still and Know...


"So don't be anxious about tomorrow, God will take care of  your tomorrow too.  Live one day at a time." Matthew 6:34 

One day as I sat in a railroad station, a woman hurried in.  As I watched her, I was aware that she was having difficulty with her reservations.  Finally she came and sat beside me.  She related all that had gone wrong.  She looked at me and said very seriously, "Can you think of anything I should be worrying about that I am not?"  We smiled at that, yet by the way we live do we display that attitude?  I remember a time in my life when I thought I must be overlooking something if I wasn't worrying.

One of the greatest fears today is of the unknown, the uncertainty and insecurity of tomorrow.  God's Word tells us that we are not to be anxious about our tomorrows.

Worry accomplishes nothing.  It can't add to the length of life; it can't change its course; it can't solve one problem.  "Will all your worries add a single moment to your life?" (Matthew 6: 27)

Worry shows lack of trust in the Lord.  It is saying in effect, "I don't believe God is big enough to handle my problem."

Worry adds tomorrow's cares to today's load.  Someone has said, "What I have to do tomorrow has made a wreck of me today."

Worry is a useless expenditure of time.  In Psalm 37:8 we read, "Don't fret and worry - it only leads to harm."

This does not mean we are not to plan for our future, making no provision for our needs.  If He is mindful of the birds and flowers, will He not care for us?  But our trust must be in HIM.

Our tomorrows are in God's hands.  They are His tomorrows.  As they become our todays, we can deposit them with Him, knowing our sufficiency for them is in Him.

Someone has said, "Anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its trials - it simply empties today of its joy.  Anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow - it empties today of its strength."


What-if

What-if took hold of both my hands

And shakily proclaimed,

"What if you cannot do this job?

You'll be the one who's blamed."


"What-if did really paralyze

My "I-will-try-it" hands;

And then it kicked my willing feet

So courage could not stand.


But when I paused and prayed to God,

And asked for faith instead,

The What-if monster had to flee,

Along with doubt and dread.


If What-if comes to steal your peace,

Do not invite him in.

He brings with him blind unbelief,

Which then can lead to sin.


Have faith in God for all your needs;

Trust Him for future days.

Look daily for His benefits,

And learn to know His ways.

- Gloria Mast


All photos taken on a recent trip to Hawley Beach, Tasmania


Monday, May 31, 2021

Not only (books), but also...

 Winter has arrived this week, with minus Celsius early morning temperatures and cold frosty nights.  So now my daily walk is either mid morning or late afternoon, when the day has (hopefully) warmed up slightly...



But I can always console myself by escaping to Shetland...

more on that next post :)


Op shop book finds this week...


Finished reading these two...



And am working my way through these...

I have quite a collection of Miss Read books now, all picked up secondhand...

Think I will make them my winter read.  Last winter I re-read all the Little House books, so this year I will work my way through Miss Read, and escape to English village life at Thrush Green and Fairacre in a time when life was simpler.

But it's not all books...


I've finished knitting this top.  Hopefully next post I can show you the finished article :)

I want to get it finished, as I already have a backlog of 'next projects' in my head


Continuing to work on my Amish blanket squares...


And at the river...

some days are diamonds



some days are gold

"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived."

- Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)

Sunday, May 30, 2021

Weekend Words

  


From Amish Peace...

Steps to Godly Living

"Supplement your faith with a generous provision of moral excellence, and moral excellence with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with patient endurance, and patient endurance with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love for everyone." - 2 Peter 1:5-7

Just as an Amish child or a non Amish child grows and matures, we must grow into mature children of God.  Why must we do that?  To make ourselves look better? To treat others in a more positive way?  No, the ultimate reason is so our excellent character will reflect our excellent God.

God sets a high standard - perfection.  That means that non of us can ever reach it, not completely, and not in our whole lives.  Did God set this standard so we'd fail?  No, He gave it to us so that we will turn to Him.

No matter what society we live in, no matter how we are raised, no matter what heritage of faith we carry, none of us can be godly without God's spirit in us.  We may be good in some ways.  We may be kind sometimes, but godly character is from Him: "The Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. There is no law against these things!"" (Galatians 5:22-23)

This fruit isn't "produced" by working harder, trying more, or living in a Christian community.  The only way the fruit of the Spirit will flow out from us is for God's Spirit to flow in.

How can we do that?  First, we must understand our shortcomings.  Genuine character starts with facing the reality that we are sinners in need of a Saviour.  Jesus saved our souls and allowed us to enter into eternity.  But He also rescues our character on a daily basis as we turn to Him.  With every step, let us praise God for where we've come and also submit to our Father's leading and to where He wants to take us.

Dear heavenly Father, I'm thankful that I'm not where I use to be.  You have begun a good work in me.  Now, dear Lord, I submit to where you want me to go from here.


From Beside the Still Waters...

Flower or Fruit - Read: John 15

"As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me." - John 15:4

It was late spring when I finally got around to trimming the old apple trees behind our barn, a chore which should have been done much earlier.  I stacked all the branches in one big heap, intending to burn them once the rains let up.  Some time later I was astounded to see an enormous bouquet of pink and white blossoms issuing from the brush pile.  Beautiful flowers had budded and bloomed from virtually every one of the severed branches.

As time passed, however, not one bit of fruit developed, and those beautiful flowers withered, dried up, and fell away.  They had been cut off from their source of nourishment, and now they were truly good for nothing but the burn pile.  Those limbs still attached to the trees, however, yielded bushels of apples.

A pruned tree may look like a disaster at first glance, but an experienced orchardist knows that trimming produces a more fruitful and profitable tree.  The parallels in the spiritual realm are striking.  Our Lord declared, "Every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit" (John 15:2).  Purging for believers is painful yet essential to develop the quantity and quality of spiritual fruit which strengthens the individual and glorifies his Creator.  The alternative is to be cast away as a dead branch into eternal fire.

Man's showy displays of wealth, position, physical beauty, and prominence are like those flowering branches - fruitless and brief.  Both in season and out of season, may we all submit to the Master's pruning.  We can be assured that it is all for our good and for His glory as we by faith continue to abide in Him.

 Pete Lewis - Halsey, OR

"Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God" - 2 Corinthians 3:5


And if you have time, there is another beautiful post from Sheryl's Splinter from our African Log blog to read.



Sunday, May 23, 2021

Weekend Words



From Our Daily Bread...

She Did What She Could - Read Mark 14: 3-9

"She did what she could.  She poured perfume on my body beforehand to prepare for my burial." (Mark 14:8)

She loaded the plastic container of cupcakes onto the conveyor belt, sending it towards the cashier.  Next came the birthday card and various bags of chips.  Hair escaped from her ponytail, crowning her fatigued forehead.  Her toddler clamored for attention.  The clerk announced the total and the mum's face fell.  "Oh, I guess I'll have to put something back.  But these are for her party," she sighed, glancing regretfully at her child.

Standing behind her in line, another customer recognized this mother's pain.  This scene is familiar in Jesus' words to Mary of Bethany.  "She did what she could" (Mark 14:8).  After anointing Him with a bottle of expensive nard before His death and burial, Mary was ridiculed by the disciples.  Jesus corrected His followers by celebrating what she had done.  He didn't say, "She did all she could," but rather, "she did what she could."  That lavish cost of the perfume wasn't His point.  It was Mary's investment of her love in action that mattered.  A relationship with Jesus results in a response.

In that moment, before the mum could object, the second customer leaned forward and inserted her credit card into the reader, paying for the purchase.  It wasn't a large expense, and she had extra funds that month.  But to that mum, it was everything.  A gesture of pure love poured out in her moment of need.

- Elisa Morgan

In what unexpected ways has Jesus helped you?  What might you do - not all, but what - to love Jesus back in a need you see today?

Father, open my eyes to see You inviting me to do what I can do today.


Let us ever love each other

With a heart that's warm and true,

Ever doing to our brother

As to us we'd have him do.

Kind and loving to each other,

Gentle words to all we meet - 

Thus we follow Christ our Saviour,

Proving all His service sweet.

- William J Henry and Luella E Henry


Wednesday, May 19, 2021

In the Bleak Midwinter?

 Not exactly midwinter, and not really bleak.  But it is getting colder, the days are getting shorter, and for the most part... I love it!


The winter comes; I walk alone,

I want no bird to sing;

To those who keep their heart's their own

The winter is the spring.

No flowers to please - no bees to hum - 

The coming spring's already come.

- John Clare



In the kitchen

Made more Soda Bread...



The basic recipe...

Lisa  was asking if my bread is heavy?  Yes it is!  Because I like it that way.  I use a small amount of white flour, but mostly wholewheat, spelt, buckwheat, rye, quinoa...
And I add seeds (sunflower. pumpkin, chia, caraway, ground linseed), and whatever else takes my fancy.  I bake in a loaf pan so it's more the traditional bread shape and better for slicing and freezing.  It's also delicious toasted!  If you prefer a lighter loaf, perhaps you could use all white flour, but I haven't tried it with all white.


And a beef and vegetable casserole...


And scones...
with sultanas, dates, raisins and currants :)



Knitting

The single bed blanket is finished...


And went in the mail yesterday to Wrap with Love...


Two scarves done, and will knit a couple of beanies to send at the end of the month to one of  Knit 4 Charities charities of the month...


And I think I forgot to show you this, the hat I was knitting with the beautiful wool Jefferson and Anushka sent me for my birthday...


It's finished, and I also managed to get a headband out of the 50gms of lovely soft and light Malabrigo Merino wool...



So now I'm back working on my Amish blanket squares...


In the Garden

The silver birch in my front garden is looking pretty in its autumn leaves...



And although there is not a lot of flower colour in the garden, this little bee managed to find a dandelion...

until I mowed over it (the flower, not the bee!) when I cut the grass yesterday.


But all is not lost, as my friend Vicki gave me this pretty potted Bellis daisy (aka English daisy) which I will divide up and plant in the garden...


At the River

It's not all gloom and doom, and it was blue skies and sunshine on my mid morning walk yesterday...




I had books to talk about too, but this is turning into a marathon post, so will do the books in a separate post.  Soon!

I really, really, really must try and get here more often!!

I'm still getting lots of headaches, and when I have headaches I need to avoid the computer :(

 I've had a couple of other health issues to sort through too, but there is light at the end of the tunnel :) 


Will leave you with this poem by Amy Carmichael I read this week...

Thou art the Lord who slept upon the pillow,

Thou art the Lord who soothed the furious sea,

What matter beating wind and tossing billow

If only we are in the boat with thee?


Hold us in quiet through the age-long minute

While Thou art silent, and the wind is shrill:

Can the boat sink while Thou, dear Lord, art in it?

Can the heart faint that waiteth on thy will?

- Toward Jerusalem


Hope you are having a good week!  Back soon... :))

xx

Sunday, May 16, 2021

Weekend Words

From Beside the Still Waters...



The Upward Escape - Read 1 Corinthians 10:1-22

But God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it. - 1 Corinthians 10:13

The two birds were in a deadly contest.  They were both superb fliers.  The pigeon's snowy white plumage would be shredded and stained with blood if she lost this race with the hawk.  She streaked in desperate flight, but the hawk appeared to be closing the distance between them, no doubt already savoring the thought of juicy, warm pigeon flesh for breakfast.

The pigeon seemed to realize that evasive action was necessary if she were to survive.  She shot suddenly skyward, gaining altitude rapidly.  The heavier hawk was too slow to follow this quick upward maneuver.  Had the pigeon plunged downward in here effort to escape, her doom would have been certain because a hawk is able to dive at astounding speed.  The pigeon would live to see another day because she had chosen to escape upward.

We are pursued daily by the enemy of our soul who seeks whom he may devour.  He intends to stain our garments of righteousness and utterly destroy us.  We know that in our own strength we are helpless to escape his grasp.  We have a choice to make.  We can reach heavenward to obtain grace and strength that only God provides, or we can plunge downward in an effort to escape a nagging conscience in the din of worldly affairs.

If we choose to dive instead of climb, the consequences could be eternal, for Satan has vast power over all who enter his territory.  However, God is merciful and may give us opportunity to repent even if we make a wrong choice.  That is an opportunity that pigeons do not get.

Gary Miller - Pantego, NC



Ah! Whither could we flee for aid, When tempted, desolate, dismayed;
Or how the hosts of hell defeat, Had suff'ring saints no mercy seat?
- Hugh Stowell