Monthly Archives: December 2010

Closing 2010

The bag of dry mixed beans have soaked.  They are now simmering in the crock pot with a 100_1769.KDC rather large ham bone, a bit of meat and juices left over from our Christmas feast we cooked for Jeff’s mom, who is now unable to cook for her family.

The cornbread will be made in time for lunch and cooked in a small bit of canola oil in the black cast iron skillet in the oven.  Thin crispy cornbread is what Jeff likes.

This will be the wind up meal for 2010.  (We’ll do leftover’s for supper.)  We’ve not missed a single meal unless it was by choice.  Thank YOU Jesus. 

Blessings and Gifts from God experienced this year:

  • health
  • husband-sweet darlin’ man of mine-and my best friend rolled into ONE
  • sanity (still!)
  • Daughters
  • Sons-in-law
  • Grandchildren
  • shelter
  • food
  • clothes and shoes
  • family
  • healing
  • His Voice in my heart and head
  • His Word in my heart and on my lips
  • First Mission Trip
  • Snow Day
  • Friends
  • Lakeside Retreat with special friends
  • Cooking out with friends
  • Adopted new brothers and sisters
  • Adopted more nieces and one new nephew
  • Sisters Retreat (adopted bunch of new sisters!)
  • Ride in a friend’s convertible!
  • Long Talks
  • Long Walks
  • Bike Rides
  • Peacock Feathers on the Walk
  • Turtles at every adventure (almost)
  • Signs from heaven
  • Notes from my Father
  • Sitting at mother’s fireplace
  • A day spent in the Word
  • Many days spent in the Word
  • Speaking at my daughter’s church for Mother’s Day
  • God saying “no”
  • God saying “go”
  • God saying “yes”
  • God saying “wait”
  • Text Messages with love
  • Voice mails in song
  • Facebook birthday notes (more than I’ve ever had in my LIFE!)
  • Mexican food
  • A toilet that flushes
  • Window seats on first air plane ride
  • Drinkable water
  • Mountain retreat
  • Making all A’s in my classes
  • Staying up past midnight to make those A’s
  • Good music that lifts the heart and soul
  • Good cooking
  • My mother’s garden with fresh greens
  • Koda (my brother’s dog that lives at my mother’s-their fierce protector)
  • Scooter (my baby)
  • Pictures
  • Memories
  • Eyesight
  • Hearing
  • Good sense of taste and smell
  • Ability to understand what I’ve read
  • Good books I’ve read and enjoyed
  • Answered prayers
  • Dreams
  • A vision
  • Hormone medication! 😉
  • Rainbows
  • Rain
  • Thunderstorms
  • Wind
  • Trees, Flowers, Grass, Sand
  • Waterfalls
  • Oceans
  • Stars
  • Sky—dark and light
  • Moon and Sun
  • My Father—the GIVER and CREATOR of all.

My feet are running to keep step with Him.following_him_signature


What Happened With YOU in 2010?

Brushed_Edge

With me—many things.  I started this morning trying to list them all on paper.

Where do I begin?  If I begin the day this picture was made in January of this year, I would tell you of the soul stirring I was feeling.

I don’t know if the stirring “shows” up on the face, but it was showing up in my spirit.  Full night’s sleep was rare.  (This feeling is back.)  I knew in my heart that changes were coming—but I was yet unsure of the details or the extremeness of the changes.

I know a post or two back I discussed changes—but I feel in my heart that God wants us to “be ready” for change at a moment’s notice. 

In February of this year, God gave me the sweetest gift imaginable!  Something I had prayed for every time the winter sky grew cloudy.  Every time.  But the timing was never right, until February of this year.

Almost two years had come and gone since the passing of my sister, Wanda.  We still had aching hearts at times, although the LORD had certainly filled our lives with His abundant love and grace. 

As Jeff and I snuggled in a cabin in North Georgia to rest and reflect of the past year, he rose early every morning as his custom and went downstairs and went before the LORD.  I stayed upstairs, not sleeping much, but praying, reading and thinking, until I knew he was finished.  It was cold.  Cloudy. Even the trees looked the part of Old Man Winter. 

On the 10th of February, the weather channel “said” snow was possible.  It flurried, but didn’t stay.  Aawww shux.  The next day was bright and sunny, and I continued to remind the LORD of my desire for snow.  We spent part of the bright sunny day out and about.  Great fun.  I cooked—we rested—read—and watched an old movie or two.

In the wee hours of the 12th of February, I woke from a dream about Wanda.  It was funny, sweet, and made me giggle as I walked downstairs before 6 to find Jeff to tell him.  When I shared the dream about Wanda, I remembered what the “date” was.  The 12th.  The day that 2 years prior she had changed her address.  From here to heaven.  Wow.  What a neat gift from GOD!

But He was far from finished!  When washing dishes after breakfast, I looked out the window at the sink and –yes!  It was snowing!  I hollered (being the country gal that I am) to Jeff and ran outside!  I think my face was permanently wreathed that morning, in a smile a mile wide!

It snowed all day long.  It stuck to the ground and I went out periodically to make sure I was not dreaming—to feel the cold flakes land on my face and soak in His presence.  As I turned in the yard, looking up at the sky and the trees that were gracefully displaying their new outfit, I laughed, cried and thanked God for such a sweet gift on THIS perfect of all days. 

The next morning as I walked down the road, still in awe of His goodness, I saw this sign.  Clearly meant for me—for this year—for this day.  A reminder from my father of the many things He had in store.Catch_the_Dream

Catch The Dream.  The significance of this sign for me at this particular time, was the book I had read just a couple of months back, “The Dream Giver”, by Bruce Wilkinson.

I had a dream.  Tucked secure.  Pondered and prayed over much. 

I saw some of my dream become a reality this year.

Through the whispers of my Father—into my heart and soul. . .through the dark eyes of children—I really didn’t know.  I asked my Father in heaven for one window seat—since I’d never flown before—and what do you suppose He did?

Gave me 4.  Four window seats so I would be sure and not miss a single gaze at all of His creation from the thousands of feet above—I saw a small piece of what He sees—when He looks below.

Honduran children

These little ones in Honduras made an impact I’ll not soon forget.  Many days they go without, their needs often times unmet.  What can I do?  I cried in prayer—as I sought a way to help.  “Just be My hands and feet today” I thought I heard Him say.

Where do we go from here?  From this spot on this earth?  This place where we have all we need and many times it overflows—I can only speak for me as to what to do.

Yesterday I started cleaning out, shortly after my devotion time.  Emptied some cabinets of the overflow, too much for just us two.  Made a call—found someone in need.  As I emptied the cabinet—I shared with a friend—“turtle girl” she is known to some—or, “B”.  (I call her Barbara.)  We texted back and forth as I emptied—with tears I told her I felt like I was being cleaned out too—from the mind, heart and soul.  It felt good when it was over.  Yes, I paused a time or two and wondered at myself—but in my prayer that day and many days before, I asked Him to GUIDE—DIRECT—TEACH me new ways to walk in Him.  I believe this was one of those new ways.

I could tell you MANY more things that has happened this year.  Jeff went to Peru.  I became “unemployed”—by choice and calling of the LORD to “prepare” for more.  Odd thing has happened.  We have lived on an income cut exactly in HALF.  Yet we have not gone hungry.  I have even spread food on the table to feed more as they came by at meal time.  Our payments have skidded in just under the wire…most of the time.  AND we both started taking Ministry Courses.  And they are NOT free. 

So, when I look back over the course and time of this year, I realize when I accepted His call—hearing His voice—listening only to HIM—He stepped in and has been exactly what He said He would be—“THERE”.  All the time.  Every Time.

Folks, I’ve got tons more to tell—but I don’t think you should sit there at your computer too much longer.  See, I took sort of a sabbatical from it myself.  I have visited rarely—but I hope my blogging friends understand.  See—there has been many occasions when I “wrote” out my post in my Oswald Chambers, “Utmost for His Highest”.  As a matter of fact—every single day has notes scribbled—or prayers.  Some of your names are there.  And some of your children’s names.  As I prayed, I wrote.  A reminder for those coming after me to remember OTHERS when praying.  So my absence was not in neglect of my Father—but instead—in more of a time of soaking.

Let’s see what 2011 brings!  I’m still going to make my list out of all my blessings from this year.  I hope to post it tomorrow. 🙂  Have a blessed –Spirit Filled—New Year!

following_him_signature


A Note From a Friend

Bill Lee

Yesterday, I received an e-mail from a friend.  I have been blessed to work for several wonderful individuals over the past years.  Bill Lee is one such good friend—and former boss—wrapped up in one.

Bill shared with me and many others what had been on his heart the past several weeks as Christmas approached.  He gave me permission to share his thoughts on Christmas—a most holy time, with you, my blogging friends. 

“Christmas is almost here once again and it seems the world is intent upon taking Christ completely out of this most joyous of celebrations. Many stores display signs that only say “Happy Holidays” and some employers forbid employees from even saying “Merry Christmas” to their customers. Communities across America are forbidden from displaying nativity scenes on public property because these may offend someone who is not of the Christian faith. And every television and news channel runs some story about the merits of the argument of saying “Happy Holidays” as opposed to “Merry Christmas”. How sad that we have come to this point in the world that we fail to acknowledge the birth of Christ.

But for me, the opposite is true. The older I get, the more I am aware of the holiness of the season and feel the need to move away from the glitz, hustle and bustle. In particular, over the last few years, the words to one of the truly great Christmas songs, “O Holy Night” has began to mean more and more to me every time I hear it. This great and beautiful song was written as a poem in 1847 by Placide Cappeau with the musical score added at a later time by his friend Adolphe Charles Adams.

When I hear the song being played on the radio or watch it in a performance on television, I get chill bumps as soon as the song begins to play with those first words, “O, Holy Night”. I sense the real meaning of that first Christmas eve night of over 2000 years ago when the most holy night in the history of mankind was about to unfold. This night was the beginning of the fulfillment for the great plan of salvation for all men after the many prophecies of the birth of a savior that took place over the prior centuries.

The next lines of the song speak to the clear night and bright stars that greeted the birth of Christ and bring to mind the beauty of a clear, winter night when the senses are fully aware of the winter cold and yet experiencing the stunning beauty of the heavens.

The words then express the condition the world had been in for centuries when it speaks of the sin and errors of mankind. Sadly, many of those who would deny that Christ is the reason for the season are still making these same errors and living in a world without hope.

But, just after this come these lyrics – “A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices. For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.” With these words, the song writer describes not just the beginning of single new day on the earth but the beginning of the remainder of human history. For with this “new and glorious morn”, God through Christ the Savior, made a way for the world to experience the fullness of His grace, love and mercy. When I hear these words, I am often moved to tears as I think of the real meaning of this single “new and glorious morn”.

As the song continues, the remainder of the first verse lyrics describe that night as a night divine when the angels were singing at the birth of Christ, which brings to mind the scriptures in Luke about the angels singing. Obviously, the birth of Christ on this night was a cause for celebration in all of creation! This is also one of my favorite parts of the song as it is usually sung with great feeling by the soloist or choir.

Of course, the second verse of the song is also beautiful with great meaning throughout the entirety of the song. But the first verse is all I really need to hear to bring goose bumps to me and to cause my heart to celebrate the real meaning of Christmas.

So, when you hear this great song in the days ahead, I hope it will cause you to stop and be thankful for the holy night and season of Christmas. Or maybe do like I do when I am traveling in my vehicle and hear “O Holy Night” being played. I turn up the volume, sing along with the music and make a glorious noise unto the Lord.

Merry Christmas to all! May you and your family enjoy all of the blessings of that first Holy Night and come to a deeper understanding of what Christmas is really about.”

© Bill Lee-2010.  Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

2010-12-11 Christmas at the Knight's 2010 013O holy night! The stars are brightly shining,
It is the night of the dear Savior’s birth.
Long lay the world in sin and error pining.
Till He appeared and the Spirit felt its worth.
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices,
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.

Fall on your knees! Oh, hear the angel voices!
O night divine, the night when Christ was born;
O night, O holy night, O night divine!
O night, O holy night, O night divine!

Lyrics:  Placide Cappeau de Roquemaure
Music:  Adolphe Charles Adams


In Training

You may not be able to tell by this photo….but they are training Scooter.

They have the book, the leash, and the dog.

Scooter looks real interested in being trained doesn’t he?

Probably about as interested as we are in receiving our training…

For the REST of this story–please visit Laced with Grace:
Laced With Grace

I have a table reserved just for YOU!

© The Knightly News 2007-2010


Changes

It seems like changes are all we know these days.

The price of food? Changing.

The economy? Changing.

The world? Changing.

But God—-never changes. His Word assures us of the unchanging ways of God. “For I am the LORD, I change not;…” Malachi 3:6

With the uncertainties of our tomorrow, we can rest easy in the resolute knowledge that God knows all there is to know about our tomorrow. There are things He plans, and things He allows in His sovereignty. We are not to question either.

That is easier said than done. With all the things that we have lived through, and even died through, we have seen the hand of God in every circumstance. I bet you are wondering why I said “died through”.

This is why:  In order to get to the place where God can fully use us to our absolute fullest potential — we must die daily—of ourselves.

We desire so strongly to be in that place, of absolute “usability”, we are asking God to work in our lives as never before. “Show us the things which need to be changed so that we can be changed—to walk fully in His Spirit—and not in our own selfish ways.”



Connie Haile Photography

 What changes are headed your way for the coming year?

Some you may already be aware of, some will be unexpected. They are only unknown to your heart—God knows full well what 2011 will bring for each of us. And we must fully trust in, and rely on Him.

He is worthy.

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end.” Isaiah 9:6-7(a) NIV

Merry Christmas!  From our hearts to  yours!

© The Knightly News 2007-2010.  All rights reserved.

Photo used by permission of Connie Haile Photography


More Christmas at Our House

Since it’s Saturday, we will overlook the clutter dropped off on the table from being gone to last night’s Christmas party!

Don’t be alarmed if Scooter jumps on you when you walk through, he is just getting to know you…very rarely does he bite.  Actually, I only know of two people he bit. 🙂

Okay! Now on to more of the Christmas decorations!

To make things a bit easier for me today, I have loaded them into a slide show.  I really hope you don’t mind.  At least this way, you can sit in one spot and won’t have to walk all over the house!  Besides, there are presents that aren’t wrapped and I don’t want you peaking and then “telling” the kids! 😉

http://picasaweb.google.com/s/c/bin/slideshow.swf

I enjoyed having you here!!!! Let’s do this again REAL soon!

© The Knightly News 2007-2010


Signs of Christmas-Welcome to our house

Christmas at our house.

When Jeff surprised me with the tree, I was overjoyed!  Last year, April, our youngest daughter helped me decorate the tree.  I took great joy in sharing with her every detail of every-single-ornament.

Hmmm.  Maybe that’s why she didn’t come help me this year.  You think?

Oh well, I will share with YOU!

This “Joy to the World” ornament is part of 6 ornaments that my sister, Wanda hand stitched for each of us several years ago.  I have  set, Aimee has a set and mother has a set.  I carefully wrap each one in tissue paper when putting the decorations away each year.  THAT is why it still looks like she just stitched it!

This little brown haired angel is one of two angels. The other one is blonde. I bought both to match our girls. Mother used to do that every time she bought me, Wanda and Aimee dolls. She would match our hair with the doll.

When Wanda was very young, she had very light hair. Aimee and I both always had dark hair. Aimee and I received a blonde haired doll one year for Christmas–only once though.

Our brother Jeff had very blonde hair…and I don’t think he ever got a blonde haired baby doll.

THIS sweet little ornament was made by one of my girls for me when they were in the 2nd grade. Yes, our tree holds every imaginable sentimental ornament.

This little “Shih Tzu” ornament was a gift last year from a dear friend. Scooter is not the hair bow wearing type of Shih–but I do get creative with his neck scarves. 🙂

This sweet rabbit was purchased by me–for me. I also bought one for mother and Aimee. I found them at Barnes & Noble in their “after” Christmas sale and snatched them up–if you remember, Wanda collected bunnies. I think she would have loved these. We each have one on our tree.

This beautiful doll was a gift last year from a precious sister-in-Christ! I love baby dolls–even still! And have a couple here at the house for the girls to play with when they visit.
I know what you are thinking. What girls? It is true we have 6 grandSONS…but we also have 1 sweet grandDAUGHTER–and I have a very special niece and we have a few little girl-friends who have visited and played! (Parker, Riley, Faith and Sara!)

I will TRY and post more ornament and the stories that go along with. (You are right, I will never know if you nod off while I am talking!) I think this little fellows face tells it all….don’t you?

Sorry.  I couldn’t resist!

Have a BLESSED weekend!

 

© The Knightly News 2007-2010