Friday, November 25, 2016

Now That's a Pie!

This was our selection of Thanksgiving pies this year. No, it's not two mini pumpkin pies.... Those are two regular size (9") pumpkin pies. They look mini because that's a huge apple pie! It measures a full 13" across and has 6 pounds of apples in it! It takes a double double-crust recipe.
Now that's a pie!
We bought this pie dish 3 years ago. It's not actually a pie dish, but was marketed as a pasta bowl. Paul and I both love pie, and went on a search for such a thing after having several children and never having leftover pie to enjoy after family dinners. Larger pie = more slices = more to eat the next day.
We finally found it at the pottery shop at Silver Dollar City. I love it, and never have regretted the $30 purchase.
We shared this pie at family Thanksgiving with Paul's family. He took a piece of the leftovers in his lunchbox, and i had a piece for breakfast, and we still have a couple to enjoy for supper.
And THAT is why we wanted that pie plate!

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Casting Out Idols

I am reading through the history of the kings of Israel in my daily [somewhat] quiet times. I try not to use devotionals or study books, because I get distracted by the opinions of others, from what God may want to say to me.
When the Israelites settled the land God had promised, they were told to destroy all the current residents already living there. This has always seemed a bit brutal to me, and to many others, I'm sure. But as I read on in the history, I see why God wanted those pagan nations destroyed. It would have made life easier on the Israelites!
God is the one true God, and He is serious about His people recognizing His authority. When the Israelites failed to drive out these pagan nations, not only did the people remain, but their religions remained also. Time after time, year after year, the Israelites repeated a circle of falling into worshiping idols, being punished by the one true God, repenting, having life go well, then falling back to their worship of these other gods, only to be punished...
As I read, I asked myself - Beyond the history, what is something I can learn from this narrative?
Because at first impression, the Israelites are idiots. Why don't they get it, that all of their problems are because they stop worshiping God alone?
But what about me? I may not have little stone idols on a shelf in my house, or altars built under the trees in our yard, but am I worshiping the one true God, and serving Him only?
I read a quote recently, and I can't remember it exactly, or who said it, but it went something like this: To any extent you aren't as excited and on fire for God as you were the day before, or the week before, you are a back-slider. (I think it was Oswald Chambers in My Utmost for His Highest.)
Well, I'm definitely a back-slider.
And that means, like the Israelites, I have begun "worshiping" idols, and allowing other things to become more important than God alone.
Now the task is, now that I recognize it, to identify those idols and cast them out. For the Israelites it was easy. Break up the idols; tear down the altars. For us, it's a lot harder. What if your idols are food, or the internet, or coffee, or a smart phone?
But I see now why God said to completely get rid of the other nations and their idols. When you keep the things you worship side by side with your relationship with God, unless you are capable of extreme self control and diligence (which I'm not), your relationship with God - reading His Word and the privilege of talking to Him - is going to get pushed aside by these "idols" that seem more exciting and more accessible and available, more instantly gratifying.
And that is why God's Word is "living and active" - it uses a historical account from 4000(?) years ago to speak to my heart today!

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Life Rolls On

Life keeps on moving, whether I'm ready or not.
We're already on week 8 of school.  That's 1/4 of the way through the school year!  Where has time gone??  We did take a "spring break"  a couple weeks ago because I needed to do the spring cleaning that I had never gotten done.  Paul had taken the week off work, so we took the week off school to enjoy time together and get some things done.
Elsa is rolling over, trying to pull up and crawl, and just about ready to sit herself up.  She chows down the baby food like she may never get another meal.  She's almost 8 months old!
The weather has been ridiculous.  Now in November, we have only had one night cold enough to frost (which was 3 weeks ago), but only in patches.  Had the garden not drowned (again - twice in 2 months is too much to recover from), it would have been the most fantastic fall garden we've ever had.  This week has been in the 80s.
I was supposed to have my varicose veins repaired this year.  We started the process in May.  My doctor in Lawrence referred me to a doctor in KC, because the origin of my varicose veins seems to be in my pelvis (coming off my uterus), rather than in my legs.  Insurance is refusing to pay for the surgery to fix it. They say it doesn't work, so they won't pay for it - but they realize I may need the surgery, and I am more than welcome to pay for it myself!  (Ugh.  Don't even get me started.)  My doctor is appealing it (again), but now it's November, and still not a single thing has been done to fix my veins.
The big boys both had birthdays this fall.  Nathan is now 9, and Jacob 7.  Again - where has time gone??  They are both getting so tall and strong.  They're right on the edge of the responsible/irresponsible age.  I can usually trust them to get things done, but there are those days.....  (Gideon's birthday is next month, and the girls are in March and April.)
Anyhow.  Time to start the day, whether I'm ready or not. :)