I’m not a fan of big crowds, probably because of my size. I feel like I’m getting shuffled along against my will. One day last year we were at Dollywood and it was about 45 minutes before the park closed. We decided we’d eat supper at one of the restaurants there before leaving the park. Everyone else was headed to the front gate to go home, while we were like salmon swimming upstream headed to the restaurant. It helps to have a tall sturdy husband to hang on to! He said, “Hold my hand,” then he plunged into the crowd dividing the people like the Israelites crossing the Red Sea. My head was spinning with those people pushing all around me!
I’m late posting today – it was a “migraine morning.” But, thank the Lord, the headache is gone now and I’m pressing on. The Lord is good to give medications, and doctors to help. He gives sleep when we need it most, and comfort in difficult, painful hours in the night.
When I went to Walmart this week it dawned on me very quickly that school is out for some children and will be coming for others in the near future. How did I know? Mothers in the aisle of the stores already had that pinched look on their faces. I could hear frustration in their voices as they repeated what they’d already said to their children more than once since arriving in the store. I heard – “I don’t have money for that.” “I’ll buy you a little toy if you’re good.” “Get out of the middle of the aisle where people are trying to push their carts.” “You’re not thinking!”
I love to pick up a book or magazine that has some really good helpful ideas in it that simplify my life. I thought I’d share some of my recent finds with you here. Feel free to share your good ideas on the comment section – I’d love to hear your helpful hints!
- Place all your shoes in clear shoe boxes rather than shoe racks. They’re shorter and trimmer than standard shoe boxes and stack nicely on the closet shelf. Because they’re in clear boxes they’re easy to find.
- Put Clear plastic drawers in your closet to store socks and belts.
- Use a lingerie bag usually used in the washing machine to hold small lids, baby bottle caps and other small items from slipping through the dishwasher rack.
- Use a magnetic clip to hold your recipe while you’re cooking. Stick the clip to the stove hood and you’ll be able to see the recipe easily.
- Wrap a rubber band or two around the ends of a hanger to keep your camisoles and sleeveless tops from sliding off the hanger and into the floor.
- Use an empty tissue box to hold your empty grocery bags.
- Pop your medication into a contact case for a handy pill box.
- When you get to the bottom of your favorite tube of lipstick dig out the remains with a Popsicle stick and put it into a clean contact case. Presto! Lip gloss is now at your finger tips!
- I saw a girl using a baseball card collectors notebook for her coupons. Everything was laid out in sight without having to dig through a coupon box. I haven’t found a cheap one yet, but I’m on the look out! If anyone finds one, please tell me!
- When you’re in the middle of a painting project and it’s time to quit, instead of washing all the paint off your brushes and rollers simply wrap them in syran wrap ’til you’re ready to paint later that day or even the next day. This way you’ll only have to clean up the messy brushes once!
- Keep cilantro fresh by cutting off the bottom of the stems and placing the cilantro in a cup with enough water to cover the stems. Place the cup in the fridge. The cilantro will stay fresh for a couple of weeks.
- I found that cleanser with bleach in it cleans the shower better than any of the expensive sprays I’ve tried.
- Magic Erasers are fantastic – have you tried them? It removes all kinds of grime that other cleansers won’t!
I have a German friend that I met on our way to our mission trip to Spain last year. I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned him on my blog, but it is a joy to my heart. My friend’s name is Claus. “Like Santa Claus – without the Santa” is what he told me when we met on the plane. The Lord gave me the sweet privilege of sharing the Gospel with him as we flew to Germany. Though he did not receive Christ, he is very open.
“Where has this blogger been this week?” you may have asked. Well…life happened. Interruptions came. It’s a part of life, isn’t it? We had the joy of having an open house at church for the four home-schooled students that are graduating. That brought our older daughter and my parents to town to be here to help us celebrate – what a joy the whole weekend was!
This morning after company had left, laundry had been started and I got to my quiet place to read the Word I read II Samuel 12 about “life happening” in David’s life. He had a major interruption. He was being punished for his sin with Bathsheba. His baby son was struck by the Lord with an illness. David went to his quiet place to fast and pray for seven days. He wouldn’t eat or get up for anything because he was so given to prayer for his son. As his servants observed him they were sorrowful for their king and when the baby died they were frightened to tell David. They figured that if the child’s illness had caused such a reaction to David, the news of his death would push him over they edge. They were surprised, and I’m sure much relieved to see that after David learned the dreaded news of his son, he:
- Got up
- Washed himself
- anointed himself
- changed his clothes
- went to the house of the Lord and worshipped
- came back to his own house and ate
In other words, he went back to all the things he would normally do. We ask, how could he do this – his son had just died. His servants asked David the same question. His reply was that while the child was alive he knew he could make an appeal to God and pray for him. But now the Lord had made a decision and nothing David could do now would bring the child back. He had the confidence in verse 23 that he would go to the child some day (what a day that will be!). I don’t believe David had an attitude of “Well, it’s over now, so what’s the use?!” I believe that he had a solid understanding of the sovereignty of God. After all, after he learned the news he went to the sanctuary and worshipped – he could only do that with a love for God and acceptance of what the Lord decided for him and his wife.
“Life” happens to all of us. My interruptions were sweet ones, but sometimes those interruptions are things we can’t understand, they’re things that are hurtful. A kidney stone, changed plans, a job loss, the betrayal of a friend, someone else getting married instead of you, someone else having a baby while your arms are empty…all these things interrupt life as you planned it. How should we respond? David’s example is one we should follow. His heart was aching, yet he got up and continued to do the normal things of every day life. He also worshipped his God because he knew he could trust what His plan was for his life. He encouraged those around him by his response. Our biblical response will encourage our family and friends too. David was just like you and me. When “life” happens, read II Samuel 12 and follow David’s example. Life isn’t always easy, but we can trust our sovereign God.
Have you ever looked at a family and wished your family could be like theirs? Perhaps the family in view was a large family with many children and it seems that every time you watch them they have so much fun together! The older siblings look out for the younger ones, they get along with one another, and they seem to have it all together. Another family in your sight seem to have the best parents. They are patient with the children, always have clever ideas for fun ways to spend a day, and they teach their children about the Lord at every turn. Perhaps your pastor’s family is your envy – the time they spend serving the Lord together must bring them special blessings.
This week as I’ve seen Jon and Kate Gosselin (Jon and Kate Plus Eight) in the news, I’ve wondered how many people have seen their life as ideal up to this point. How many have wished themselves into their shoes? I’ve pitied those little ones who have had cameras on them every waking moment of their young lives. But it’s really about more than that. Each of us need to realize that every family deals with the same things. Those families that you’re watching up close and personal at church, or on a blog are real people. Even Christian families have the same issues you have. They are real, sinful people that have to deal with fatigue, tempers, selfishness, disobedience, money issues, rebellion, making time to have devotions, etc. No family is exempt. Of course the extent of each of these issues is different because of personalities and how the problems are dealt with, but my point is that they are there to be dealt with.
There are no perfect children or parents. There are no perfect marriages. We must each guard our hearts every day, ask the Lord for wisdom and His enablement to raise our family for Him, and be the best wife/mother with His help. When we mess up, we can’t give up – we must fess up – admit it and confess it! This is essential to getting back on track.
Behind the walls of the home that you may be envying there is a need for God’s intervention, just as there is in yours. The best news is that it is available for us all!