Categories
Nature Spiritual growth

Living Sunflowers!

Right outside my office window my husband was able to keep a sunflower from the deer. It is branching and blooming now. Imagine my delight when I glanced out the window to see the sunflower come alive! The Goldfinch have found them. There is a black oil sunflower feeder not four feet away, but these guys like their food fresh and locally sourced.

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Yes, truly a treasure in plain sight!

Luke 12:22-26 (HCSB)
Then He said to His disciples: “Therefore I tell you, don’t worry about your life, what you will eat; or about the body, what you will wear.
For life is more than food and the body more than clothing.
Consider the ravens: They don’t sow or reap; they don’t have a storeroom or a barn; yet God feeds them. Aren’t you worth much more than the birds?
Can any of you add a cubit to his height by worrying?
If then you’re not able to do even a little thing, why worry about the rest?

31  “But seek His kingdom, and these things will be provided for you.

Look, seek, watch for the Lord to manifest His presence around you. Then rejoice! He IS a good, good Father.

Categories
Family

Change, Change, Change

“The world for which you have been so carefully prepared is being taken away from you by the grace of God.” -Walter Brueggemann

Change is inevitable. Come to Expect it. – Anon.  I heard this as a teenager and hated the saying. I wanted to keep the fun parts of my life going on forever! Why would I want change?

hand 293The only constant in life is change. – Anon. I found this on a bookmark in a parking lot one summer. I had big plans to help build a storage building at a Homeless Shelter in a few days. That same day I tripped over the dog’s tie out, fell in our driveway, and broke my arm. I was not going to be able to help at the Shelter, or cut up my own food, or use my arm and hand for quite sometime!

I heard a minister preach once that control is an illusion. I argued with him all the way home from church. Now that I am older and wiser I know he was right in every way!

Do you remember the song “To everything turn, turn, turn, there is a season, turn, turn turn?”  Wikipedia says: The lyrics are taken almost verbatim from the book of Ecclesiastes, as found in the King James Version (1611) of the Bible (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8), though the sequence of the words was rearranged for the song. Ecclesiastes is traditionally ascribed to King Solomon who would have written it in the 10th century BC, but believed by a significant group of biblical scholars to date much later, up to the third century BC.

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, a time to reap that which is planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
A time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

The Biblical text posits there being a time and place for all things: laughter and sorrow, healing and killing, war and peace, and so on. The lines are open to myriad interpretations, but Seeger’s song presents them as a plea for world peace because of the closing line: “a time for peace, I swear it’s not too late.” This line and the title phrase “Turn! Turn! Turn!” are the only parts of the lyric written by Seeger himself.The song is notable for being one of a few instances in popular music in which a large portion of the Bible is set to music!

Humans do not like change, regardless of age, race, nationality, religion, ethnicity, or gender. Guess that is why we need grace and patience as life unfolds! Try to go with the changes today.

Categories
Family

Object Lessons

I’ve always learned best with object lessons. Case in point, Psalm 32.
Verses 8–9 reads: “I will instruct you and teach you the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you. Be not like a horse or a mule, without understanding, which must be curbed with bit and bridle, else it will not keep with you.”

Now this is a promise of God that I need and cling to. I am always thinking of ways to help remember it and to help others remember it, too. Once we shopping in Adams County at an Amish store that specialized in belts, shoes and probably other leather items. Walking along one wall looking at accessories I spotted a shiny steel item that I was not quite certain about. I asked the owner what it was. He told me it was a pony bit, for training and leading a young horse.

Of course, I went to replace it one the hook as we have no horses or ponies at our house. I did not replace it before trying it in my mouth. I bought two!

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I actually like it best when I am lead with the Lord’s eye upon me; however, I’ve also been known to need a bit and bridle in order to follow the Lord closely.

If you need a reminder, I have two! One hung on my office wall for years! The other is in the drawer. Just be careful when you place it in your mouth that you don’t chip or crack a tooth! Trust the Holy Leader.

Categories
Family Spiritual growth

Today is the Day!

Yes, I have been home long enough to get caught up a little bit. So today I launch the other sight, Stand-and-tip.com.

If you click on the name on the sidebar you might be able to go there automatically IF I did everything correctly??!?!?

Well, I did not do the link correctly. The help line seems to be off line. So I will get back to you on this Monday, I hope!

OOOO! I think I figured it out! You should be able to see a link to my other blog on the right of your screen. Stand and Tip. Hope it works now 😉

Categories
Family

Open the Door

Yet another example of treasure in plain sight as I studied Joyce Rupp’s book.

I was looking for a quiet place to read the next chapter. Stumbled upon an empty Executive Board room with comfortable looking chairs. Made myself at home and looked for a coaster to place under my beverage.

Yep! There it was again. A coaster set with a selection of door photos, shown here on top of my book.

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I actually finished the book before I left the grounds.. A lot of work, but SO worth it.

Blessings to you as you pursue the Blessing Giver, Molly D.

 

Categories
Family

Missing Something?

I usually read on my Amazon Fire until I fall asleep at night. Beats insomnia! Lately my husband has complained that I often drop my Fire on him when I fall asleep. Now I am trying to be more careful to tuck it away as I fall asleep.

Last week I was alone on a private silent retreat. I often had trouble finding it the next day when I decided to recharge it. NOT a treasure in PLAIN sight!

Do you remember the tooth fairy? You got it! If my Fire is missing I am learning to go look under my pillow.

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THERE IT IS!! My man has me trained! Guess this old dog CAN learn new tricks. We joke saying after almost 48 years of marriage saying, “ It is to late to train a new one!”

So if you are missing something, always look under your pillow. You never know! It might be right there 😉

Categories
Spiritual growth

Open the Door

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Oh my goodness! If you haven’t used this book yet, go buy it! Such a guide to going deeper into yourself, your walk with God and removing obstacles that block your path!

I cannot say enough about how it has helped me. Check it out for yourself and start opening up!!

 

Categories
Nature

Moon Flowers

Bob tells me that unless you click on the blog within the email you cannot see the photos! Hope you did that with yesterday’s photos and humor? Seriously do it today to see moon flower photos.

While at the Convent I have enjoyed the moon flowers in bloom. I have not noted the fragrance that some websites speak about, but I have been indoors in the evening. There was a full moon during my stay. One evening I rolled over in bed and was literally hit in the eye by a moon beam!

Praising the One who makes moon and stars, trees and moon flowers!

UnfurlingVisitor!“Drop Thy still dews of quietness until our strivings cease; Take from our souls the strain and stress and let our ordered lives confess the beauty of Thy peace.”

Look at that seed!

No photo editing! Just great light 😉

Categories
Spiritual growth

Humor During Retreat

This long retreat I have been using Joyce Rupp’s book entitled Open the Door A JOURNEY TO THE TRUE SELF. There has been much humor as I read and pray, study and allow myself to be transfigured here at the Convent of the Transfiguration! Today is Friday and I thought I should summarize the humor before the details escape me!

Dealing with aging and increased pain from osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia I have had to face the fact that as my body and abilities change my attitude and expectations must also. Here on the grounds of Bethany school and the Convent changes are every place. A few years ago I wrote the article “The Bee Lingers.” The location of that story is now gone with the new construction of an updated school building. Most of the fence around the garden has been removed. The shrubs and morning glory vines gone, too.

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I have chosen to make a private, silent retreat. Yesterday the workmen were not only cutting down a huge ash tree in what you might call my front yard, but grinding it up, also. I am certain that tree has been here longer than I have been coming to the Convent. Later in the afternoon a young man was busy with a huge chainsaw cutting up some of the branches. His fellow worker brought over some equipment and they picked up pieces of the wood to toss in it. Big pieces of wood! Have you ever tried to lift a tree slice? Very heavy. Made so aware visually that my strength is not what it used to be. Yet, I will be okay as long as I can get in a mental place of acceptance. So examples of change for the better surround me. I found it humorous that I would be reminded that change can be so noisy.F7B73C51-1677-4F36-8344-CCFB97A25ED9

There were also workmen taking concrete into the basement of the church building. They had an on-site mixer, wheelbarrow, gutter-like chute for sending it down the flight of stairs and the sidewalk was almost blocked by their 2 pickup trucks parked upon it while they worked. I assumed they were doing some sort of repairs to the foundation of the building. Meanwhile, I continued to work on my foundational mindset. Interesting to see. Then the tools were put back in the trucks, concrete washed off the equipment and everything loaded up. Once they drove away if you had not witnessed it, you might not have known they were here. There was a piece of wood placed over the entrance at the foot of the stairs.

Every time I enter my quarters I have to push really hard to get my door to latch. I usually have to push twice. Guess what! The door has a knocker on it that bumps when I shut the door. Joyce Rupp has six lessons devoted to knocking on doors. Objects lessons every place! 31475846-570A-4F46-89D7-D83A6AC48F08

The basement workmen were back today and I just had to ask them why put concrete in the basement? Was it foundation work? No, not foundation work. They were installing a new DOOR and always build a concrete frame first. 593B065C-7FE1-43F1-BB7E-C9149746B8EFI showed them my retreat book and the man told me his was one door I would not be able to open. So true, but I giggled as I walked away amused that I know One who walks through doors!

The Lord is showing me that He will accompany me over every new threshold as I age and change. He will help me grow in the things of the Spirit. This last photo is a closeup of the basement threshold  before the concrete dries. Look closely and you will see the moisture on the concrete around the threshold!

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May you always find the courage to grow and change in life with grace. Tear down old structures you do not need anymore. Close the doors that need closing and swing wide the new doors! The next chapter in her book is entitled “Oiling the Hinges.” Ought to be interesting.  😉

Categories
Family Spiritual growth

Brat Child

When my son was little a babysitter called him a brat. He was terribly upset. In the following poem I refer to myself as a Bratchild. You will understand, and possibly relate, when you read it!

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Bratchild of The Kingdom © 2002 Molly Lin Dutina

I have a naughty girl inside who says
“Just let me start the laundry
before we sit and share.”
“This coffee pot is such a mess!
Who designed this thing?
Didn’t they test what happens
in actual use before they sold it?”
“I wonder if I’ll get to this today
and that project over there?”
“I love You, Lord.
One moment, Lord
I’ll be right there!”

This is the same petulant girl
complaining yesterday of too much
outflow, outgo, output and
not enough input, strengthening, power
from the Throne on high.

Yet here she is with time for
healing, refreshing from His Presence*
and what choice does she make?
Putting off the Majestic and holy Lord
she goes first to the frivolous and mundane.

*Acts 3:19-20 Repent therefore, and turn to God so that your sins may be wiped out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that He may send the Messiah appointed for you, that is, Jesus.

Yes, during this retreat I am working on learning about my new blog site. No, that is not the ONLY things I am doing!