Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Please pray...

My grandmother called me this afternoon very upset. Today, shortly before noon, their pastor drowned in a boating accident. He and 3 other men from the church had taken advantage of a beautiful day and went fishing on the lake. I don't know exactly what happened, but there was an accident and Brother Russ was taken home to be with Jesus. One of the other men was air lifted to St. John's hospital, one was taken to a local hospital, and one of walked away.

Please pray for the Frist Christian Church in Flippin, AR, for all the church members, and for the Dunham family. Brother Russ Dunham leaves behind his wife, Lesa, and 3 young children. I know this family would be greatful for prayers as they come to grips with the accident and try to make sense of it all.

Saturday, February 21, 2009


Technically, it may still be winter, but our cows have decided it's spring and time to start having calves. I love this time of year! Last night Chris came in and said he had to have help, we had a 1st calf heifer trying to have her calf and it just wasn't coming, so Casey grabbed her boots and headed to the barn with him. I had to put on jeans because I'd already gotten comfy in the flannel pants, but I followed with camera in hand. I was absolutely no help, but I did get some great pictures. Chris pulled the calf and it wasn't long before the mamma was working him over trying to get him up. He was BIG! We had gotten spoiled, this is the first one he's had to pull in 2 years. We have 6 calves on the ground now, 2 from our bull and 4 that I call "free gifts with purchase". We bought 9 "open" heifers and 4 of them have had calves. Cute little surprises!

Spring, to me, is a time of rebirth and renewal, a new season. Spring always reminds me of the verses in Ecclesiastes 3

A Time for Everything
1 There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven:
2 a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,

3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,

4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,

5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,

6 a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,

7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,

8 a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.

I think, as Christians, we are like those new calves, we have new birth in Christ, He cleans us up, helps us stand on wobbly legs, nourishes us, and helps us grow while He stands beside us. How quickly we grow and how strong we become is totally up to us, and this spring, I'm choosing to grow by reading and studying His word. How about you? We have missed 3 weeks of church because of illness, but tomorrow we will get back into the groove. I love my church, it's a place of encouragement, strength, and comfort. To see my children grow and flourish in Lord just makes my heart soar. God is good, even in the storms, He is good!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Too tired to blog?

Why is it so difficult to get back into the groove after you've been sick? I'm so tired tonight I came in from school, stretched out on the bed (before I changed clothes) and fell asleep! I'm almost tempted to try one of those energy drinks the teenagers seem to be so fond of, but I'd rather not be awake for 3 days, so scratch that idea. Hey, maybe I'll go to bed early tonight, there's a novel idea!

Today I had a run-in with a couple of my 11th grade boys. I know why the day didn't go well; I didn't pray for these kids today before they came in my room. It resulted in him making some very rude comments, me ordering him out of my classroom and to the office, then my having to step outside the door to regain my composure. I was about to unload with both barrels on his little friends who were also making smart remarks. To make it worse, I got a new student today and he had to be there on the day that it all hit the fan. Pray for these boys, they need the Lord in the worst way. They seem to have no respect for women or the girls at school, they are vulgar, rude, and need to be under conviction! (Maybe that's just my wishful thinking, maybe I want to place them under conviction, but I can't even come close to what God can do.)

I'm making myself a note so I won't forget to pray for these kids, even the ones who just drive me nuts! So many of them have circumstances that would be difficult for adults to deal with it's no wonder they have attitude problems.

Lord, help me to hear Your still, small voice, and help me to pray for these kids, use me in for Your glory, and never let me forget that we are ALL made in Your image. Amen

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day!

It's been another of "those" weeks, the ones that make you want to sing the old Kris Kristofferson song "Why Me, Lord?" After 15 days without electricity, we finally had power restored, that same afternoon I got sick, really, really sick. I ran a high temp for a couple of days, and couldn't even muster the strength to get out of bed. Chris was sick, Austin was sick, and Logan was just getting over being sick. We were a sad bunch. Today was better, though, I actually ate solid food after 4 or 5 days of liquids. Those liquid diets really work, but I don't recommend them unless you are intent on self-torture, add a fever of 103 and it will take the excess fluid off your body...but I digress. I felt even better when my brother called and said they were coming to Mom's. I love my brother, and I love my sister-in-law, but it was Landon I was wanting to see (sorry Lance & Lindsay, but it was bound to happen when you had that sweet baby).

This afternoon I spent a couple of happy hours just snuggling my baby nephew. I wouldn't give him up, he was mine today. If you had asked me if you could hold him I would have told you no...okay, I might have let you hold him for a couple of minutes...maybe 5, but no longer. I also took some really sweet photos of him. Oh, how I wish I didn't live an hour from them! Logan crawled up on my while I was holding him, patted his little hand, and said, "Mom, I think we need to babysit Baby Landon at our house. We can take him home with us and Lance and Lindsay can take a nap." I think he has listened to us talk about how many times Landon wakes up during the night. LOL You just can't beat the wisdom of a 4-year-old.

So that's it, that's how we spent Valentine's day. Our fancy dinner will be a pizza (if I can talk Chris into going to town and picking one up), and our entertainment will be whatever delights Dish has in store for us tonight; we do have several episodes of NCIS Dvr'd, so that's always an option.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Some cheese with my whine?

When I was a kid I wanted to be Laura Ingalls Wilder, complete with dark brown braids. I read the tales of her life and thought how much fun it would be to live that pioneer family life. I have since changed my mind. With the ice storm and loss of power, (we are on day 7); I have come to the realization that I quite enjoy being a modern woman who is completely reliant on modern transportation, technology, and electricity! Those frontier women were tough! Thankfully, we still have generator power, but we are dealing with some water issues and our generator kicking off at the well pump. I love living in rural Arkansas; I love being out on the farm away from all the traffic; I don’t love not having electricity.
I am trying to be cheerful about all this, but it’s getting increasingly difficult to remain upbeat about putting a 4-year-old who hates the dark to bed every night and listening to him cry. Last night was one of my insomniac nights. Normally on those nights I get up and quietly slip into the living room to read or write; last night I couldn’t do that. To help conserve diesel for the generator, Chris shuts it down at bedtime, which plunges the house into total quiet and darkness. Last night there was nothing I could do but lie there in the dark and think. Chris works so hard and the storm damage cleanup is adding to his list of things to do. He worries about making sure we have what we need, he worries about keeping the house and well on a generator; will it cause damage to the wiring or breakers? He’s tired; he’s cranky, and I’m losing the battle to remain cheerful and positive. For the first time since the ice storm I lay in the bed and cried. What will we do if we go back to school tomorrow? Chris doesn’t want to leave the generator going while no one is home; do I get coolers and unload the refrigerator contents into those? Do we let the house get cold again? What do we do when the kids and I get home before Chris and I don’t know how to start the big generator (and don’t want to learn).

I know I’m whining, and I really am thankful that we have the generators, and I know the crews from the Rural Electric Co-ops are working very hard to restore our power, but I just needed a minute for a pity party.
Okay, I’m better now, time to move on to more important topics. Please pray for my sister-in-law, Lindsay. She’s a new mom (see my post on my sweet new nephew), and she’s had an infection. Even though she’s been on antibiotics, the infection just wasn’t getting much better. Night before last she was very sick and Lance took her to the ER and the doctor admitted her. She has a staph infection and is being given large doses of IV antibiotics. Mom is at their house taking care of Landon for a few days, or until Lindsay can get back on her feet. She thought she may come home today, but the doctor has decided to keep her another night. I wish there was something I could do to help her, but I don’t know what that would be. We really don’t want to leave home and leave the generator running, so what to do, what to do? Pray! Please pray for Lindsay, and Lance, and Landon.

I had no intentions of turning this post into a novella, but it did, and I offer no apologies. Sometimes a girl just has to be a little long winded!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Beauty amid destruction

"Praise You In This Storm" by Casting Crowns is one of my favorite songs, bar none! I find so much comfort in the words and still praising God through the storms of life. This past week, though, I was praising God through a different type of storm, and ice storm. As I lay in bed Tuesday and Wednesday nights listening to large tree limbs breaking and crashing to the ground under the weight of the heavy ice, I kept telling God, I will praise You in this storm, because I trust God will bring us through whatever trials may come our way. We are still on day 6 with no electricity, but God provided wonderful neighbors who had a very large generator, so we are able to have lights and heat. We are in a very rural area, but neighbors have been checking on neighbors (our closest neighbor is 1/4 a mile away) and all are well. I am so thankful for these people.

Mom was with us for several days and I was so happy to have her here, we were talking one day, about not having electricity and how this may have been God's way to prepare us for something in our future, possibly a mission trip? I think God has also helped us realize that we are not in charge of things, He is, and if we remember to give Him praise in ALL things, not just the good times, He will provide.

Please continue to pray for the crews from the electrical companies, especially North Arkansas Electric, as they work 16 hour days to get power restored to all the people who are without electricity. Casey has been working long days, too, and will continue to do so until all outages are restored. She's exhausted, but this has made her realize that we can't take things for granted because they could be gone in an instant. It may be 3-4 weeks before we have electricity restored, but as long as diesel and gas are available, and our generator keeps chugging along, we will be just, as long as God is in control we will be fine!