Faith is a big word. It does not have many letters but it does have a great impact on life. We can have faith in many things. There is faith in your own abilities and faith in the inevitable expected result of a given action. i.e. if you jump off a building you will land on the ground. Now how you land and if you survive is a whole different topic.
This weekend as I sat at the table eating lunch with two of my grandsons we had a rather interesting conversation. The youngest Rex said that he prays 3 times each day at daycare. He was speaking about praying over his food at this point. Jack however disputed this statement. As the conversation continued Jack told me something that he believes will happen. I asked how he knew it would happen, and his reply was that he prayed and asked God for it. I sat in awe.
This 5 year old child showed me the faith like a child. I love children because they are not so complex and they can believe because they hear and trust those who teach them. Why can’t we all be like them?
At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Who, then, is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”
2 He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. 3 And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4 Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 5 And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.
Jesus wants us to be like little children. Simple in our faith, willing to learn and loving. If we can step back a bit and become more like a child our lives would be easier and have less stress. It is a mindset of understanding what is important and keeping the simple, simple.
Would you join me this week in taking the complexity out of our beliefs and just being like a simple child. God said it must be true so I will follow it. Enjoy your week and I will be back next week with more.
I have not published for a little while because of family fun times. Last week we attended a family reunion with most of my brothers and sisters and their families. It was great. We got to spend time with family members we have not seen in a while and build our relationships. This time we had fewer events planned and spent more time just hanging around at the lodge and swimming and fishing etc… It was great. Although I could not walk as far as I wanted I was able to get around a bit and enjoy myself with family.
When we got home Bob went to the garden and there was an abundant harvest. I decided this morning that I would cook up the tomatoes and peppers along with onions, celery and some broccoli that I had in the fridge to make some tomato juice. We ended up with some juice and some tasty tomato paste. I think we can use it all. (I hate throwing anything out that tastes good.)
I love that we plant seeds and nurture the plants and can leave them for a while and when we return they have done well with producing. Bob found a very large cucumber that we enjoyed some of for lunch today. We weren’t sure if it would be good because it was so big, but it turned out great.
Over the years as a Christian we have all planted faith seeds in different places among different people. It is not up to us to cause these seeds to grow it is up to us to plant and water and trust God to help them grow and mature. We have to trust God that any good we plant will reap something good, but we can’t get frustrated and try to take this into our own hands and force fruit. Fruit must grow naturally or it does not grow.
Sometimes we allow ourselves to believe we are in charge of the salvation and walk of those around us. We are not. Truthfully, we are only servants of God who spread good news, the results are out of our hands. I am happy with that because I don’t want to be in charge of what other people do and what they think or how they live. I struggle enough taking care of my walk with God.
Mark 4:26-28 (NASB)
26 And He was saying, “The kingdom of God is like a man who casts seed upon the soil; 27 and he goes to bed at night and gets up by day, and the seed sprouts and grows—how, he himself does not know. 28 The soil produces crops by itself; first the blade, then the head, then the mature grain in the head.
God is in control. Enjoy your week and I will be back next week with more.
Sorry I did not post last week. Two of my grandsons were over on Saturday for a while and then on Sunday afternoon just as I was sitting down to write this blog Chris, my middle son showed up for a surprise visit. It was wonderful to have him show up out of the blue and a bit surprising because he lives at least a ten hour drive away from us. He was on his way somewhere else and dropped off to see us on the way.
Bob and I had great visits with family last weekend. It is wonderful to have family come by. This weekend my two youngest grandsons got to spend the night on Friday. That was fun. Life gets so hectic you have to just take time to enjoy family when the opportunity arises. I am trying to learn how to relax and take every opportunity that comes my way with family. Life is too short to miss golden opportunities that only come once.
I am growing in my understanding of how important it is to cultivate relationships with God, family and friends in order to have a well rounded life and mindset. Just like in gardening you need to cultivate the ground and add the nutrients and water needed to help the plants grow, we must also take time to cultivate our relationships by adding time, compliments, fun and other stuff to build them strong. Remember life is all about how we relate to each other. Join me this week in fine tuning relationships in a positive manner.
On this father’s day I would like to recognize a special man who I have watched over the years grow into an awesome dad, my husband Bob. The caring in his heart for his children and grandchildren helps me to understand how blessed I am to have spent so many years married to him. Happy Father’s Day Mr. Bob, I love you.
Enjoy your week and I will be back next week with more.
I did not publish a blog last week because I was in the midst of a sad occasion and many miles from my computer. We put my mother in law to rest on Monday. She is now peacefully in her eternal reward.
Her name is Ruth, which means “friend, companion”. She really lived up to that name. When I think about her my main memories are about the kindness that she showed toward me from the first day that I met her. As a child and young adult I struggled with one on one conversation with those older than me, but she made conversing easy.
Ruth was friendly, loving, kind, interested in the lives of others and would do what she could to help those in need. One of my favorite things about her was that she was down to earth without frills, which made her all the more loveable and easy to talk to. She was hard working and always had some project going, usually quilts. She never let anyone who came to her home leave hungry, and she was a great cook. She was strong in character and resolve. I never had to worry about my children misbehaving at her house because she was quick to correct their bad behavior and when she did they remembered and were better the next time.
The rod and reproof give wisdom, But a child who gets his own way brings shame to his mother.
She helped me tremendously during the brief sickness and death of both of my parents within two years of each other. When she became my children’s only living grandparent she took on that role with honor and loved them even more. As my children grew older they got closer to her and never missed the opportunity to visit her even if it was just for a few minutes. She loved those visits. Later as parents themselves, they would bring the great grandchildren to her so they could experience the wonder that was “Grandma Palmer”.
I hope that I can be as kind and accepting and loving as she was as I attempt to be Grandma to my six grandchildren. It was a rare occasion to see her without that beaming smile on her face.
If I could say one last thing to her I would say “Ruth you will be missed here on earth by many and we look forward to reuniting with you someday in heaven.”
God gave me a wonderful mother-in-law and sometimes it takes the passing of a wonderful person like her to remind us that we should truly appreciate our parents, grandparents and other relatives while they are still with us so we don’t regret what we did not think to say while they were alive.
Enjoy your week and I will be back next week with more.
There is nothing like imitation to help you appreciate someone. This year I decided to share some of my memories from childhood with my grandchildren. I am not just telling them stories but rather imitating some of my Mama’s traditions so they can be passed down to this new generation.
I started by building a “cookie crib”, which is a manger scene with the building built out of sugar cubes, powdered sugar mortar, and a shredded wheat roof. Then the most fun part is to make the cookies with grandkids. This year I had Jack and Rex. But Rex wasn’t feeling good so Jack got all the fun.
I use some antique cookie cutters that my Mama used. As I started I remember my mama’s struggle with getting the cookies to release from the cutters. But I had Jack, he was in charge of putting flour into the cutters to make them release easy. He was a fun mess.
Then it was on to painting the cookies. I will admit I did not completely remember what parts to paint what colors but that didn’t matter because because Jack was in charge and did a wonderful job for a three year old. It was all about the fun not a perfect project. We were making memories.
While we worked I was able to explain who each cookie represented and briefly what Christmas is all about. Sharing sbout Jesus in a fun way made this even more special.
Oh Mama I miss you especially when I start to realize the amount of effort you put into raising us and keeping the Christmas pure for us.
This Christmas season is starting out very special. I hope you have a child, grandchild, niece, nephew, or other child you can share the true wonder of Christmas with. Enjoy your Christmas Holiday.
In the life of a child sharing is something that is emphasized and difficult. I witnessed an amazing thing this morning as I watch two of my grandsons with a snack in the kitchen. Bob and I had bought some Red IS Apricots—first time I have ever seen these. They are an apricot that has been pollinated by a plum. We tried them and they have a sweet and tart flavor that can make you pucker but want more. So we decided to let Jack and Rex try them this morning. I cut off about 1/8 piece for each of them and Jack really loved them. I could not tell if Rex did or not but he ate what I gave him. So I cut up the rest of the apricot for Jack and put it in a bowl.
Rex decided that he wanted to eat more but Jack didn’t really want to share his, so I cut another one for Rex. In the mean time Jack finished eating all of his. They sat on the kitchen floor with both of their bowls and Rex proceeded to take pieces out of his bowl and give them to Jack. I asked Jack to make sure Rex got some and so as Rex gave pieces to Jack, Jack would put a piece in Rex’s mouth. It was an amazing time of sharing a really good snack.
Oh that life could be that simple every day. Let me dream a little.
- Wouldn’t it be wonderful if our desires were fulfilled just by showing someone what we wanted?
- Wouldn’t it be amazing if drivers on the highways would respect each other by driving safely and courteously?
- Wouldn’t it be nice if politicians would just tell us the truth about themselves so we can make an informed decision?
- Wouldn’t it be great if we allowed ourselves to have so much compassion for others that we would share the truth that we know with them so they have an opportunity to believe?
- Wouldn’t it be awesome if everyone took time to consider their eternity and take steps to insure their salvation?
Wouldn’t it be nice? This life is too short to spend being busy and never taking time to consider the future. God is our hope and future. In Jeremiah 29:11 He says:
“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
God knows what we need and has a plan for us all we need to do is take time to listen and accept Him. On this Labor Day weekend try to take some time and consider your future. Spend some time in the Bible to see what might be in store for you. Enjoy your weekend and week and I will be back next week with more.
God is faithful in good times and in bad times, in sickness and in health and the good news is that we do not depart from Him when we die. As I began writing this I realized that it is just like the marriage vows that I took 36 years ago. We said that we would love, honor and cherish each other in sickness and in health, in good times and in bad times, for better or for worse until death do we part. (I might not have gotten the order right but you get the picture.) The time that we have been married has flown by and we are more in love today than when we married.
We raised three children who, like all children, challenged us at times. But more often than not they gave us joy and are still bringing happiness into our lives through what they do and through our grandchildren. Last night I was reminded of those days when we took care of two of the grandchildren. One had a fever and the other one is teething. I remembered those very short nights but the satisfaction that I was able to comfort a baby in need made it worthwhile. I was also reminded once again that I am no longer in my twenties and probably would struggle a bit with night after night of that. Thank God the fever broke and there was only one incident of throwing up.
God equips us with what we need when we need it. Last night God allowed me to be the comfort for a sick toddler and a teething baby. I thank God for those moments because they allow me to build a better relationship with family and to let the love of God shine through. I am blessed and a little tired but feeling wonderful about life.
My daughter believes that she has to apologize for the children being sick, but I tell her it is part of life and I wouldn’t want it any other way. Children are children and I expect they will always present challenges but I love them and God loves them and that is all there is to it. I am blessed to have children that have such caring hearts and loving souls.
Remember to enjoy your family while they are near and know that God will give you the strength to deal with anything that comes your way. God is faithful in good times and in bad times, in sickness and in health. Enjoy your week and I will be back next week with more.