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Monday, November 25, 2013

Why Are We Waiting



And what are we waiting for...

Permission?

Some people believe in genetic determinism, and for years she had mostly thought of herself as one of them. After reading an article about a scientist who discovered he was a psychopath, but that it didn't express itself in him in a way that would make him a murderer, and believes it was due to having received an especially large dose of love as a child from his parents; she has been convinced that genes can be influenced/changed by nurture.

After church today, she came home thinking she would spend time sewing on items she has piled up for clients. Though she tries to make Sunday a day of rest or at the least, one in which she spends time doing something she loves to do as a way of meditating/vegetating/relaxing/thinking spontaneously about what she had learned that day in church, she was feeling a little pressured to get things finished for her clients.

She dragged out a pile of repairs she has for one of her favorites and started planning the task. It would require a fusible tape that she has lost track of during the many gyrations that have accompanied her re-arranging furnishings and stuffs to meet her ever evolving goals toward a more appropriate way to utilize her home for business and living.

Of course that required her to go out to her garage-that-is-still-yearning-to-be-a-studio and is now piled high with all her sewing tools and implements. In the process she happened to notice what a beautiful day it was due to the rain they had received two days in a row. And also in the process, she sat for a few minutes while the dogs ate and checked her Facebook happenings.

She made the mistake of following a link from one of the permaculture gardening sites she likes/follows and watched a horrifically depressing video hanging there.

As you may know by what she posts on her FB wall, she is daily struggling with issues that revolve around the awful state she see's the world as being in and fears no one else is seeing it.

Even though the video started to make her feel ever more hopeless...she felt like it still hit her nail on it's head when it likened the process (that the world is in the midst of) as being not just ill, but terminally ill and that it WILL NOT get better. That it (the state of the world) should be being approached in a way as if grieving it's sure demise.

One of the people being interviewed on this video, Carolyn, " suggests thinking of the Earth community, of which we are a part, as being terminally ill. Take time to reflect on our lives, make amends, and value the time we have. Both guests suggest learning how to live in community, being present for one another."

And since she just personally went/is going through the most horrific grieving process she has ever had to be a part of, (including her Mother's somewhat expected death in 1996, her beloved Stevie-dog's death in 2011, the loss of her three kitty cats, progressively, not all at once, soon thereafter, and all the boys she has lost in love over the years), this time, the untimely/unnecessary loss of her sister; she knows just a tiny-big bit of what it is to grieve...

The nail the horrifying video hit on it's head for her was that she has finally been coming to the calm of realizing that the world is God's. That no one knows when it will end or how. He will do with it just as he decides. And that she personally can't do much to change it.

The lesson she was to learn from church this day was to not grieve, not complain, not worry, not try to fix. The lesson was to give thanks. God is looking for each one of us to "In everything give thanks, this is the will of God for you". 1 Thessalonians 5:18

"The Bible says that our call, as a people, is to introduce a place for the entry of His rule to work instead of what is the present prevailing rule of Hell, of darkness."

She hasn't given up hoping that there might be a way to influence change, but that the change might be just in how she sees things for herself.

The world seems determined to destroy itself. Rather, humans seem determined to destroy it for everything else. People seem to be, for the most part, psychopathic.

The lesson in church today started out describing the process known as Perfecting, interpreted for it’s Biblical meaning here as the maturing of the Christian, ( in her own words, “knowledge upon knowledge”).

Everyday she gains new knowledge.

As she watches the world turn and turn itself into a mess, she has long hoped that she could have an influence toward the outcome she has had the hopes for it to be.

But just like hoping you can save a loved one from themselves, all we can do is the best we can in our own lives and hope it rubs off somewhere.

Like the scientist mentioned above who found out he was the psychopath he was studying in the images he was looking at, and like him, realizing that the outcome of his life was not necessarily determined by how his genes were fixed but rather how they were influenced to be expressed; the world she has been so worried about destroying itself, however unlikely or however not the will of God it might be to correct itself or to get well from "terminal illness", the point is not to "perfect" the world. The point is to continue to "mature" in knowledge, to aim for perfecting oneself for the pure joy of knowing that it is God working His high purpose in us.
"The Bible doesn’t say that everything that happens to us is something He designed and is good. It says that in it, through it, and beyond it, He can work good where He’s invited....'In everything give thanks for this is the will of God concerning you.' What’s the will of God concerning you? That in everything we give thanks. That’s the will of God concerning you. The thing that happened isn’t necessarily, but that you give God praise in the middle of it. Why? Because you feel good? No. But praying without ceasing introduces a song of praise into a situation that’s so tough you find yourself standing facing it with tears. Begin to sing, not because you say, 'Well, I guess I need to submit to this because God intended me to have this horrible event in my life.' But by the song, by the praise, we begin to infest the situation with the possibilities of His presence and His power. Rather than resigning the situation unto the best way we can muddle our way through it, or pry our way through it. ... 'We’ll just do the best that we can.' The best that you can make of it is not going to be very good. The best that He can make of it will be something that will bring the reason the Bible tells us to "in everything give thanks;" not because God foisted or worked this number on you to get even with you or somebody else, but because the Lord says, 'Into the poison pollution of this planet, if praise is lifted up there will come the presence of My power. So lift up song because it invites God’s presence. Lift up praise.' " [excerpted from http://www.livingway.org/library/faq/faq019.htm]
After thinking about sewing, noticing what a beautiful day it was, thinking about "learning how to live in community, being present for one another" watching her doggies eat and then wonder if they might be bored this Sunday while she busied herself sewing for others; she asked the doggies if they wanted to go for a ride and pick up a friend on the way and go to the park and have a walk? They said yes, the friend said yes, the park was beautiful, the weather too.

The world isn't likely to end tomorrow. Life is short as it is. It will end someday, for everyone, some sooner than later. The world is a mess, yes it is.

She also found out in church today that she has had an influence on Jimmy.
He said he has been reading all her grizzly (her word) posts on Facebook and it has made him change how he is eating and he wanted to let her know how happy he is that he has made this change and that it wouldn't have been except for her. And then later in Sunday school class Pastor was eating a piece of broccoli and she said, "Look at you eating green." To which he answered back, "Yeah, I heard you and Jimmy talking about eating right".

She doesn't want to believe that those two being interviewed are right and that we should all be grieving that the world is terminally ill and will never recover.

She doesn't want the radiation from Fukushima wrecking it's havoc on the Earth, Monsanto gaining custody of the seeds of the world, "the correlation between the development of wireless technologies and the collapse of more and more bee colonies" to be true.

She doesn't like to see what Wal-Mart shoppers take home to eat, or that the animals they eat are so badly treated.

She doesn't like that Wal-Mart ruins the economies of many a person, city or state.

Why Are We Waiting and what are we waiting for? We don't need permission to live the lives we hope for. We don't need to wait to give thanks for what we have or pray unceasingly.

The doggies won't live forever.

Just as she believes that genes can be changed by nurture, that a psychopath doesn't have to become a committer of horrifying crimes, she believes in the power of thanks giving. 

This is the day of Thanksgiving. Rejoice and give praise. Why are we waiting, and what are we waiting for?

You have permission to rejoice.

Take the doggies for a walk. Spend time with a friend.

Does God not say, "Into the poison pollution of this planet, if praise is lifted up there will come the presence of My power"?

"In everything give thanks for this is the will of God concerning you."


She thinks He does. What do you think?



Friday, July 19, 2013

A Bountiful Life

Even though the Community Garden at Grace Chapel is behind schedule and now planning a fall garden, members of Grace Chapel are home planting their own little plots; getting more and more adept at knowing what to do to keep things growing and happy.

 Squash Blossom...

Internal Combustion...

Crook-neck Squash squished in among the Cucumbers...

Cucumber Blossom...

Cucumber babies...

Cucumber adolescents...

Pumpkin Blossoms...

Blossoms Aplenty and Bees among them...

Pumpkins for the Puppies...

'Maters, 'maters, and more 'maters....

More Squash, more 'Maters, Swiss Chard, Carrots, Cantaloupe, Beets, one lone Bush Bean, one lone Pepper, some hopeful Strawberries in the 1/2 gallon...

More internal combustion...

Cantaloupe, this year trying to grow up, not out...

Some of the Cantaloupe is getting out among the baby Beets

Luscious Leaf Mold and other Composted scraps and weeds...  

Starting to smell real Earthy...

Nifty Rain Water Retrieval System...

You do what you can, can....

Vessels of liquid gold...

Water...it needn't go to waste...

What are you planting this year?
What are your soil amendment techniques?
Are you collecting rain water?

 Mama's little helper.

Peace on the "homestead" here at Ms. SpoolTeacher's "barnyard".
Peace to you and may you have a fruitful summer in every way.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Light Up the Night Fest

Everyone had a great time at Light Up the Night Fest, October 31, 2012.
Games, prizes, hayrides, food, campfire...we were inside and out and all over the grounds at Grace Chapel, Benson.

Say "Jesus"!
Lining up for the costume contest to receive tickets to the concert.

Angels??? Sometimes, sometimes not!

And when we had all had too much fun already...Theresa remembered the pinata. Oh boy!
One of the Miles/Flaming twins actually broke the pumpkin and then the mad scramble to get a fair share.
It was a fun night for all. Laurel was the lead/go to/boss person and did an exceptional job...
Pastor Lupe stayed in the periphery and differed all questions to Laurel...
To view all the pictures in a slide show, see the home page of this blog, it is feeding on the top right side. Otherwise, here is the link to the Picasa album...
http://tinyurl.com/a8qaop6


Monday, July 23, 2012

Oh Hummingbird

"It is common for animals (even those like hummingbirds that have high energy needs) to forage for food until satiated, and then spend most of their time doing nothing, or at least nothing in particular. They seek to "satisfice" their needs rather than obtaining an optimal diet or habitat." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laziness
Humans, on the other hand...
Well, actually, humans aren't a lot more ambitious to work any harder than they have to than are most other things in nature...
http://christianwarriors.multiply.com/photos/album/9/pic#photo=25

"Extremely efficient predators have more free time and thus often appear more lazy than relatively inept predators that have little free time."
Most humans would rather lounge around in a hammock or take a "cat" nap...




Unless of course, it is something they are completely passionate about and/or find great pleasure in...
















But even then...

...after exhausting all of the energy he is able, and all of the resources available to him...

"11 Then I looked on all the works that my hands had wrought, and on the labour that I had laboured to do: and, behold, all was vanity and vexation of spirit, and there was no profit under the sun. "

Is it a call to give up and do nothing?

Is it a call to set our sights on truth?

What is it that is the ultimate fulfillment?

"12 The sleep of a labouring man is sweet, whether he eat little or much: but the abundance of the rich will not suffer him to sleep."

9:11 I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all. 12 For man also knoweth not his time: as the fishes that are taken in an evil net, and as the birds that are caught in the snare; so are the sons of men snared in an evil time, when it falleth suddenly upon them.

"Every revelation of God that is made to us—is a revelation of beauty. Everywhere in nature, in the flower that blooms, in the bird that sings, in the dewdrop that sparkles, in the star that shines, in the sunset that burns with splendor—we see reflections of God's beauty." J. R. Miller
He has made everything beautiful in its time! Ecclesiastes 3:11

"Maturity is learning to endure the pain of deferred gratification, when reality requires it; thus, the Psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud proposes that “an ego thus educated has become ‘reasonable’; it no longer lets itself be governed by the pleasure principle, but obeys the reality principle, which also, at bottom, seeks to obtain pleasure, but pleasure which is assured through taking account of reality, even though it is pleasure postponed and diminished”.[3]
It's no use to fight it...

“Man’s chief end is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.”
Among the famous sayings of the Church fathers none is better known than Augustine's, "Thou hast formed us for Thyself, and our hearts are restless till they find rest in Thee."
"But the beauty of the Lord in a human life, is not merely a heavenly yearning. It is intensely practical. It is more than religious sentimentality, more than devout feeling, more than holy aspiration. True spiritual longing draws the whole life upward with it. Joan of Arc said that her white standard was so victorious because she followed it herself. We must have our spiritual aspirations—but we must follow them ourselves if we would make our lives beautiful. True holiness does not make people unsuitable for living well in this world. It has its visions of Christ—but it brings them down to brighten its daily path and to become inspirations to beautiful living. It has its joyful emotions—but they become impulses to self-denial and patient work for the Master."
J. R. Miller http://gracegems.org/Miller/beauty_of_the_lord.htm

So we must continue the work of 
The Road Less Traveled

 
Summer Breeze, Seals and Croft

Monday, May 21, 2012

Freedom Fries and Stayin' Alive

What's in a name?

A lot.

Discord can happen by the slightest of offenses.

Controversy:  A dispute between sides holding opposing views; turned in an opposite direction.

It is not uncommon to have controversy.

Freedom fries was a word coined to offset the discord of opposing views over a war.

There are so many wars going on everywhere. Not just big wars and the threat of world war three, but wars in families, wars among siblings, wars on drugs, wars on poverty.

Mercy, mercy me.

Controversy. Imagine having a wine rack in the middle of a church community garden. As if that isn't enough to make people talk. And then start choosing sides?

But, because of the controversy over a war, a local liquor store decided to remove any reference to France; so Grace Chapel Community Garden was the fortunate recipient of a wire wine bottle display rack that resembles the Eiffel Tower.

We now have a cucumber plant growing at it's feet and hope it will support the growth upwards and off the ground to help keep pesky little critters from eating them before we can.

Grace Chapel has been being blessed from all directions. Sometimes it can seem that the struggle will be uphill forever. But then all of a sudden a corner is turned and the struggle becomes delight. New, good things are happening with every turn from there. Friends of members, friends of friends of members and just members of the community at large are showing up with gifts and offerings. Angels are appearing.


Recently Grace Chapel was given the gift of a park model mobile building. It was a lot of work making it ready to move and then to move it.
Pastor Lupe told the donor, "Sure, we'd love to have it. Sure we can move it within two weeks."
Then he wondered, "How are we ever going to do all that?!"

Angels.

Suddenly there was help to ready it. And from nowhere came a young man with a truck that seemed too small to do the job but got it done, indeed he did.

Angel.


One Angel striped the purple paint off the new church doors, another dressed them up with a cross, refinished them and put them up for us all to walk through.

Are we blessed or what?

Then, as if that all isn't enough, Dana of Dana's Upholstery in Benson, Master Gardener, friend of a member, member of the community at large, donated all kinds of her Heirloom, green-house, personally hand-started plantings and offered up all kinds of friendly advice for how to get the garden growing.

Sometimes it's almost more than we can keep up with. Almost more joy than we can keep to ourselves.

But we are NOT complainin', mind you!

And we know that once we empty our blessings back out to our friends and the community that we love, we will have an empty cup that can be filled up again.

And that's just exactly how we like it.

We don't prefer controversy. We don't like turning in opposite directions. We like having Pot Blessed gatherings and sharing our thoughts peacefully and harmoniously in our laugh-a-minute Wednesday night home meetings. We want to share what we have and care about our friends and sometimes even our enemies.

"But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;" Matthew 5:44

So thank you all for loving us back and giving us the things that you have. We are feeling encouraged and seeing the growth that we hope will result in blessings back to you.

Now, if we can just keep all those lovely plants alive.

Calling all green-thumbed Angels!









Friday, May 4, 2012

Flower Girls and Busy Boys


So we left off with Where The Boys Are.. and wondered where they were headed..
Sometime back, Pastor Lupe was explaining about acquiring these plastic drums and had come up with an exciting way to convert them into planters that would be self-watering..
The first thing was to cut a section off of the top that would be used to suspend within the lower section.







Using an electric saw, he and the boys cut the section off, then drilled holes in it and secured it to the bottom part and then painted it gray...













Now it was time for the Girls to have some fun...







But, first he sent the younger boys off to collect rocks out of the previously tilled plot that will soon be growing green things...


And he sent the older boys off to do their studies, out under the trees..














Then he got hold of the toilet paper roofing fabric that will be used to poke down into the holes the boys drilled so it can wick water up into the soil that will be planted with flowers...



"What does it mean, wick?" asked the girls.

"Does anyone have any sharp scissors?" Pastor Lupe asked the girls.


So someone ran and got a pair and then Pastor Lupe poked the "wicking" fabric down into the holes while Mrs. Diaz explained the process of water wicking up the fabric; capillary action..capillarity, the ability of a liquid to flow in narrow spaces without the assistance of, and in opposition to external forces like gravity.

"Okay, now put the dirt in."






"Good teamwork, girls. Now smooth it out."











"Now it's time to really have fun, go get the flowers."...


 
Everybody got involved and everybody was having fun...
 


"Let's put the ones that will trail down, up front where they will spill over the edge."


Waiting for a turn to plant...


"There, that's it. We're done." 




 













"Not so fast, we have to water..."

"See, the water goes in here and will wick up the fabric and wet the soil and water the plants."

"Oh, that's why you cut the angle at the bottom of the pipe!"

"So the water could flow out at the bottom and fill the drum."

"Oh!"

"There it comes, I can see it, can you see it?"











"Well, if you can't see it, here, maybe you can feel it!"














Right about then, the boys started to filter back and the girls lost interest as girls will do when there are boys about...

So the camera lady went off with the younger boys to see what they had done and the older boys went out with her too and started to cut limbs to clear the walk and to explain what the younger boys had done..



 


 
"Wow! the picture lady said. "Wow, that looks great! You guys did all that? Wow!"

They were all pretty proud of themselves, as well they should be after all that good work.

Now, what next, we must wonder, will they have to do with this?....
Stay tuned again, it will surely happen soon...
Pastor Lupe knows, but he's not telling, except for the camera lady and she's not talkin' either!

What do you think it will eventually be?
You're invited to come and see.

Pot Blessed every third Sunday...

Mmmm, num, num!


...and then there are these things too..

There's just no end to having fun.