Archives February 2021

But Here It Is Friday

cat standing near stone wall

and the kitties are back

It has felt like an eternity since Monday, but here it is Friday. The sun is shining and it’s a beautiful day outside. The ten feet of snow has all melted from off our deck and the kitties are back. They like to sit in front of my sliding door in the sunshine.

Old Fuzzy has been quite adamant for years he doesn’t want cats. Our daughter-in-law has tried on occasion as she came across ‘kittens for free’ at garage sales, but no, Old Fuzzy wanted nothing to do with…

So, we have neighbors that feed stray cats—Lots of stray cats. And what I mean about neighbors I mean half a mile away neighbors. And of course, as fate would have it, some of the stray cats from the neighbors decided there was far too much competition and decided to relocate. Cats, especially stray cats, are like that.

We ended up with Miss Kitty about two years ago. She comes when she wants, goes where she wants, and lives her life the way she wants. I think she lives down around our grain shed where there are enough mice to feed her and any of her kittens that manage to survive. Old Fuzzy buys cat food on occasion and she has cat food twice a day to supplement any sparse moments in her mouse catching, or in case she wants a treat.

Back in the days when our boys were still at home and doing farm chores, as they would milk cows some of the cats would sit around the ‘milk pan’ in which the milk person would pour fresh from the cow milk to feed the hungry cats. Some of the more friendly cats would sit on the back of the one milking or at times on the back of the cow.

I’m sure there are many people who would wonder at our simple lifestyle. Quite a few years ago when our oldest children were small we lived close to where some Amish people lived. At that time we would drive out and watch as some of the farmers were working their land.

Of course, they still used the horse-drawn equipment and many of the old techniques which fascinated all of us. At one stop while we watched the goings-on one of our boys asked, “Why do they do that?” and we told them, ‘because that’s the way they choose to live.’

Psalms 90:

9  For all our days are passed away in thy wrath: we spend our years as a tale that is told.

10  The days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away.

11  Who knoweth the power of thine anger? even according to thy fear, so is thy wrath.

12  So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.

13  Return, O LORD, how long? and let it repent thee concerning thy servants.

14  O satisfy us early with thy mercy; that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.

15  Make us glad according to the days wherein thou hast afflicted us, and the years wherein we have seen evil.

16  Let thy work appear unto thy servants, and thy glory unto their children.

17  And let the beauty of the LORD our God be upon us: and establish thou the work of our hands upon us; yea, the work of our hands establish thou it.

Time—

woman and child playing on green grass field near mountain

we live in a world of time in an ocean of eternity.

How long is a day? How long is an hour or even a minute? Time—we live in a world of time in an ocean of eternity. If you think the first line in a paragraph is the most important you’re wrong. It is no more important than the first minute of life or the first breath of life.

Time, but all those who live have time. Some people make wise use of their time and some just float through time. Yet, good use of time isn’t just for the rich and famous not for the CEOs of businesses or powerful people.

Actually, when we dig down into a person and their life it is the poor everyday people who make the most difference in the lives of others.

It isn’t where a person comes from that determines who they will be. What leaves experts scratching their heads is although many times children follow in their parents’ footsteps it isn’t always a given that they will. The alcoholic or addicted father/mother’s children will more than likely follow those same steps, but not always.

And therein is the question, the quandary, why? Why do some make it out and some just stay in the same horrible pattern?

There seems to be some credence to the idea that it is because of someone of importance in a child’s life. It may be a grandparent, another family member such as an uncle/aunt, or a neighbor that becomes a helper an inspiration, and a stabilizer to a child.

It is a person who has or takes the time to be there for the child. To play games with, to mentor in some way the child and I would guess those aren’t usually the people with money. Those are people with the most valuable commodity on earth—time.

Psalms 90:

4  For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, and as a watch in the night.

5  Thou carriest them away as with a flood; they are as a sleep: in the morning they are like grass which groweth up.

6  In the morning it flourisheth, and groweth up; in the evening it is cut down, and withereth.

Tunnel Vision

woman in black outfit in evening field

Rabbit chasing has taken me to places I never saw coming…

I have been asked my opinion on theories that are out there. Some of them are way out there but we are told in scripture to try the ‘spirits’ to see if they are of God. Research is an area that I do enjoy or it’s close relative also known as ‘rabbit chasing’.

Rabbit chasing has taken me to places I never saw coming and I’m wondering if I haven’t ended up like the man on a recent video I watched.

He wasn’t sure about a certain conspiracy theory but twenty years or so ago he was asked about something and he made the offhand statement that he didn’t trust the government.

I don’t even know where he was from or what government he was talking about. He had an accent of some sort, so it could have been anywhere. The point is that we’ve all probably done something that could have or probably has put us on a list of who knows what.

It doesn’t take much and wham, there you are amongst the evil weirdos of the world. And they may be evil or they may just have happened onto the list the same way you did.

Walking through the world we see what the world wants us to see. It is best if we don’t become distracted by the sparkly things in the world but most of the time whether it’s the pretty things around us, or just worldly problems those things are what distract us first.

Do you ever wonder what happened? On every hand we see people who don’t do their own research and are fed false facts. And now we have fact-checkers who are replacing truth with lies and pretending they have checked the facts.

I do agree with a video I watched last week. I was interested in the topic at the top of his screen. It was one of those ‘conspiracy theories’ out there that I’ve heard railed against but I have no knowledge of. So, let’s check it out, I thought.

The video was interesting, however I honestly don’t know any more about the theory than I did to begin with. And I don’t know what the fellow was or is famous for except this was the fellow that said he didn’t trust the government. That apparently got him put on some sort of watch list and maybe slapped into the conspiracy category.

But we as people of faith know that governments are for the ungodly who have no morals nor self-control. I also remember that as a writer I can’t write ‘real’, or take a person’s real life and make it into a story. There is nothing you can make up that is more bizarre than truth.

So, for those who want to know what I think about conspiracy theories? I believe there is more truth to them than the people pulling our strings want to admit. No, I haven’t done research into them…honestly, I’m afraid to do any more research. As it is I will continue to walk in faith trusting that no matter what government is pulling the sets down around us my God is greater than all the stupidity there is in this world, and because God is in control, WE WIN. Hallelujah!

2Corinthians 5:

6  Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord:

7  (For we walk by faith, not by sight:)

Proverbs 16:

9  A man’s heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.

Hebrews 11:

1  Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

An Encouraging Word

Another Monday with an encouraging blog from Chris. Thank you.

crop medic calibrating phoropter working with patient

“an ounce of prevention is worth…”

How are your eyes trained?
As a farmer, you are always on the lookout for things that need to be fixed. We have all heard
the cliche’ “an ounce of prevention . . .”

Being taught that from a child and gaining a good deal of satisfaction from fixing things it seems my eyes are trained to see faults, the
things that aren’t right.

In some ways that is a blessing but it is also a curse. Let me explain.

When it comes to mechanical things it is important to pick up on the malfunctions
quickly and precisely to prevent more major problems. With livestock, it is good to spot
the sick animal quickly for the same reason.

Eyes trained to notice these things are a
blessing. Even though mine are not as good as I could like them to be.


On the other hand, I tend to pick up on the faults of other people much faster than I should. This is the curse part.

When it comes to people it would be much better to have eyes trained to find a kind word to encourage, to build up others. That takes eye training and a lot of practice. This is something that I am working on.


God said it like this: “A word fitly spoken Is like apples of gold in network of silver.”
(Proverbs 25:11)

close up photo of chocolate cake on a gold colored saucer

and “A man hath joy in the answer of his mouth; And a word in due season, how good is it!” (Proverbs 15:23)
How are your eyes trained?

The Plans That I Have

time lapse photo of stars on night

…like all people our plans often get waylaid.

Like small children I’m sure most of us have plans. And like all people our plans often get waylaid. This last week we have seen what God thinks of the theory of global warming.

I’m writing this as one who has seen for many years the panic mode of the experts who swing from one dire warning to another. We were going to experience an ice age then an ozone depletion, but after that it was another crisis until we learn the meaning of ‘Never let a good crisis go to waste’.

Along the way we’ve also had an over-population crisis which was supposed to bring us starvation and…crisis after crisis.

I’ve heard it has snowed on the beach at Galveston. I don’t know how much snow but we have seen pictures of people trying to rescue sea turtles and alligators with their snouts sticking out of frozen water.

Texans have been suffering from the prolonged cold—below freezing temperatures that they are really not used to with power outages, frozen water pipes, and all of the things they just never have to deal with.

Plans—most of us wrestle with day to day life. Most of our lives don’t change dramatically from day to day. This last week we lost Rush Limbaugh. To some people it was a moment to pause and reflect on someone who made a difference in lives in ways many people will never understand.

There was the other side. The ugly other side, who thought their two cents worth made a difference in the world. There were the deluge of remarks on how Rush was a bigot, racist, homophobic, etc. from that group of people. As if their opinions were valued, but those who listened to Mr. Limbaugh knew different.

It was fitting that in a final tribute a friend to Rush was asked how Rush could continue doing what he did three hours a day for five days a week for all his years and not get bitter at all the hate spewed at him. “Well,” the friend said, “he didn’t speak to the people not listening to him.”

And that’s the point I guess. We put out there, those of us who do a public platform, we put out there what we feel others need to hear. But not all will hear what we put out there—Only those who are listening.

Jeremiah 29:

11  For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

12  Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you.

13  And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.

Philippians 1:

6  Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:

Proverbs 16:

3  Commit thy works unto the LORD, and thy thoughts shall be established.

February 16, 2021, What Does God Say?

happy family hugging outdoors

I have looked through my seed catalogs and dreamed of the nice spring days to come.

I’m looking around at snow. Snow and cold temperatures and the news is full of authorities warning of rolling blackouts and I don’t know what that means. I do know what -17 degrees is though.

We had a two-hour late school delay today. As if cold isn’t cold, it has to be worse when you are constantly told how cold it is. I have looked through my seed catalogs and dreamed of the nice spring days to come. Those days will be here in just a few weeks.

I have also made all of our garden seed purchases except one company and that is mostly herbs and a few supplies. So, like the song “California Dreaming”, I’m ready for spring dreaming.

I do believe this cold winter snow and weather makes our other seasons more special. It brings to mind the story from Laura Ingalls-Wilder about the Long Winter when they were on the prairie and had such hardship. The snow and blizzards began in October and didn’t much let up until April. The whole town was in danger of starvation. Laura’s future husband, Almanzo, and a friend risked their lives to find a rumored stash of wheat in order to save the town.

Since the early 1970s, we have had flash warnings. Some of the warnings have been because: We are entering now—on the verge of a new ice age. A few years later the new warning was We are now entering an age where the ozone layer is being depleted. Between that and the news flash we are battling now, there was at least one other emergency, but now of course we are being threatened by global warming.

As someone has recently said the climate has always had a habit of fluctuating and I expect it always will. Something many are not aware of is that God doesn’t ask for our advice, and God will do what he has always done…without our advice—run the universe.

What we should do, and this isn’t to say we shouldn’t be good stewards of what God has given us, but we need to pay attention to what we can control, which is being not just a good steward of the environment, but being a decent human being. We need to be right with God first off, and second, be right with our neighbors.

In other words, take care of the things we can take care of and leave the rest to God.

2 Corinthians 12:9  And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

Jeremiah 30:

2  Thus speaketh the LORD God of Israel, saying, Write thee all the words that I have spoken unto thee in a book.

3  For, lo, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will bring again the captivity of my people Israel and Judah, saith the LORD: and I will cause them to return to the land that I gave to their fathers, and they shall possess it.

Colossians 1:11  Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;

February 11, 2021 Where Has the Week Gone?

family making breakfast in the kitchen

Then life takes off faster than going down a zip line at a thousand miles an hour.

Where has the week gone? I could use that for the day, week, or month…and come to think on it, in some cases the year. This week our oldest grandson turned twenty-eight. What a shock. The biggest shock is that in a few days our youngest son will turn twenty-eight.

And yes, where have the years gone? Both of those young men ought to still be youngsters. But they aren’t and oddly enough, neither Old Fuzzy nor myself are youngsters anymore.

There are all sorts of funny memes out there and one of them which is not just funny but very succinct is the one that says: I knew I would get old I just didn’t understand how fast.

You know, you begin life looking forward to growing up and being an adult, determining your own future and whatnot. You get to the part of life where you find your life-partner and you get married, begin your family…then life takes off faster than going down a zip line at a thousand miles an hour.

The older people always tell you ‘enjoy your children while they’re little, while they are growing up, while…’ and the next thing you know the old people were right—you look and those rascally children have grown up and are on their way into their own life.

They say to treat your parents well, and the way you treat your parents is the way your children will treat their parents. It would be simple to try to lump everyone into one Tupperware bowl, but it doesn’t work that way. Each set of circumstances is different.

There is much to be remembered from the song “Teach Your Children Well” by Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young.

Habbakuk 2:

2  And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it.

3  For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.

Joshua 1:

9  Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.

Esther 4:

14  For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place; but thou and thy father’s house shall be destroyed: and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?

WHAT CAN ONE DO?

stylish mature man reading book on waterfront

Here is another very good article by Chris Westphal:

Perhaps you have asked that question. It can be a valid inquiry. Oftentimes it is posed by
someone on the brink of despair.

And sometimes it is offered as an excuse for one’s inactivity.
So, what can one do? Let’s look at some examples of what one can do.

One – family can build an ark and save 8 people. (Genesis 6-8)

One – man can defeat a giant (I Samuel 17)
One – man can defeat 450 prophets of Baal (I Kings 18)
One – man can lead 650,000 plus through the wilderness (Exodus 12:37)
One – man can save all who want to be saved. (Luke 19:10, Acts 4:12)

Don’t let Satan convince you that there is nothing only one can do. Great things have
been done through the effort of only one. Important things no matter what the scale may
be accomplished by one. You never know when you are the one through which God has
chosen to accomplish a task. Are you ready? Don’t keep Him waiting.

For Jehovah thy God hath chosen him out of all thy tribes, to stand to minister in the
name of Jehovah, him and his sons forever.
(Deuteronomy 18:5)
And Samuel said unto Jesse, Are here all thy children? And he said, There remaineth yet
the youngest, and, behold, he is keeping the sheep. And Samuel said unto Jesse, Send and
fetch him; for we will not sit down till he come hither. And he sent, and brought him in.
Now he was ruddy, and withal of a beautiful countenance, and goodly to look upon.

And Jehovah said, Arise, anoint him; for this is he. Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and
anointed him in the midst of his brethren: and the Spirit of Jehovah came mightily upon
David from that day forward. So Samuel rose up, and went to Ramah. (1 Samuel 16:11-13)

But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my
name before the Gentiles and kings, and the children of Israel: for I will show him how
many things he must suffer for my name’s sake. And Ananias departed, and entered into
the house; and laying his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, who
appeared unto thee in the way which thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mayest receive
thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Spirit.
(Acts 9:15-17)

We Made It

symmetrical photography of clouds covered blue sky

And it’s a beautiful morning here with the sunshine sparkling across the snow.

The diamonds are everywhere. Yes, snow is cold and it can be more difficult to maneuver in the snow. I wrote this piece yesterday, hence the reference to a beautiful morning. Today we had a beautiful new coating of snow for half of the day.

When young we never thought about the weather. We lived through all four seasons with their upside and with their downside. Sometime before I was seven we went from wood heat to oil heat. Not the most efficient system, but we survived.

Air conditioning? No, we never had air conditioning. Moving into my in-law’s house we now have air conditioning that we do use when the heat gets unbearable. I don’t handle the heat any longer the way I did when younger, but we’ve gone back to mostly wood heat.

Life does seem to revolve in a circle. At one time I viewed history as a time of humankind going from more moral to loosening of morals, becoming more immoral, but that was long ago when I was more naive.

Historical research shows societies begin as more moral and the loosening of those morals happens then that society is destroyed. When we go back in American history that circle comes and goes.

We’ve had several ‘Great Awakenings’ that resulted in a spiritual revival. After so many years it comes about again. After the roaring twenties, we had the great depression, which was a coming back from the ‘anything goes’ of the twenties.

We are due for another spiritual revival and some believe they are seeing it coming about since the pandemic. The true test is if the Awakening is really to bring us back to God or just to make people feel better.

For some reason, everyone has the belief that when a person dies ‘they are in a better place now’. What and where did they come to that conclusion? Some of course don’t believe in a hereafter, so that can explain that. We have come to be a society that believes in universal salvation.

It is true that Jesus died that we all can access salvation, but it won’t just fall on a person. And sorry to break this news, but the idea that ‘all we have to do is pray the sinner’s prayer’ and we’ll be saved isn’t true either.

Nowhere does the Bible teach that doctrine. Now is the time to study and find the truth, find the true path.

Philippians 4:13

I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

1 Chronicles 16

10  Glory ye in his holy name: let the heart of them rejoice that seek the LORD.

11  Seek the LORD and his strength, seek his face continually.

Galatians 6:

9  And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

10  As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith

Thursday, February 4, 2021 Honor Unto Whom Honor

green car on brown floor

We could fill up the gas tank pretty cheap back then and the three girls had gone together and bought a cheap car

When I was young I was the youngest in my family. My sister was older, my cousin, Coco, was older, my cousins on the other side were older (at least for a few years). And those older than I at times pulled the ‘I’m older, and you have to obey me because…’. Depending on who it was it sometimes worked.

Coco was only a year older and when we were younger she was so close that she got her way mostly by being somewhat tricky, like changing the rules of the game as we went along.

Cousins—there was a time when people lived close as families and everyone was close in other ways. We have that idea, although I’m not sure how accurate it is. In our family, there was a time when we were that way. Then we grew up and left the home territory.

My sister married, moved to Georgia until her husband got out of the military. They moved to California where she stayed for the rest of her life. Only coming home on occasion. My cousin Coco lived with us at Grandpa and Grandma’s until she was in the fifth grade, then she went to live with her mother and step-father. A move that left me desolate since she was like a sister to me.

On occasion she came ‘home’ for visits on holidays and for summer break for short times. She would share with me different books she was reading and different classes she was in. She wore her hair long, down past her knees at one point, until well after she was married.

We had Virgil’s family as well. My sister and Virgil’s second son Mike were born the same month of the same year. They were quite close in many other ways as well. Then there were Virgil’s three girls. The summer I turned thirteen I spent over at their farm. During the days we worked ‘walking beans’. That meant we walked the field rows of soybeans pulling or cutting the weeds—mostly burdock out of the fields. We didn’t have gloves and didn’t have ‘hooks’ except for certain farmers, so your hands had to toughen up.

I made enough money that summer to buy school clothes and have some money left over for school expenses. We could fill up the gas tank pretty cheap back then and the three girls had gone together and bought a cheap car—well, it was cheap and it was a car, and that’s the way I remember it. We all went on our way eventually. And in some way, we were all mushed around like someone had taken a spatula and stirred.

I have the privilege of looking back, and just being where we are. My sister has passed and my cousin Coco and most of her family are gone. So, some of us are gone, and eventually, unless the Lord comes again before we expire we will all go the way of all the earth…

Do not let your time pass without reaching out to your past. Just this week I have had the privilege to talk to my Adorable cousin. We share a past that no one else could fathom. And most everyone has that privilege but too many wait until they can’t act on that honor.

Revelation 1:19  Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter;

Romans 8:25  But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it. Deuteronomy 31:8  And the LORD, he it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed.