Friday, December 21, 2012

Making it

I stood beside a troubled marriage, feeling their pain.
A certainty came over me. I knew they would make it.
I said it boldly outloud.
"You will make it."
The husband hugged me hard.
The wife more gently.
"You will make it", I said again to her.

How do I know this?
Because they BOTH were humble and contrite of heart.
Because the husband has said, "It's all my fault",
and because the wife knows too deeply
that he speaks falsehood.

They will make it because God is not stopping in to visit their home.
He has come to dwell there within their humble and contrite hearts.
And their broken hurting home is a high and holy place
where God has come to stay.
Websters-"Make"-to set up; establish; to cause the success of;
 to accomplish; to arrive at; to reach

Isaiah 57:15-
"For thus says the High and Lofty One
Who inhabits eternity,
whose name is Holy;
'I dwell in the high and holy place,
With him who has a contrite and humble spirit,
To revive the spirit of the humble,
And to revive the heart of the contrite ones.'"

We make, set up, establish, cause the success of, accomplish, arrive at and reach our goal
when we are humble and contrite of heart.


Because it is there,
in that high and holy place of humility,
where God dwells.

And where there is humility and the dwelling of God
there is a revival of heart and spirit.

And where there is a revival of heart and spirit
there is a desire to 'make it work.'

And then, miracles happen.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Hertzler Doings-Dec. 17-23, 2012

Mon.-Alli spent the night since Freeman was away. We made candles with white wax flakes and crayons. I went to town for a meeting and errands. The girls watched 'My Big Fat Greek Wedding.' Alli took Susan to meet Ashley for BB practice. Michael worked on the farm and ran to Richmond to pick up chain saw and wood splitter from the Abbey. After I put the groceries away I called Rosalee. She sounded better.

Tues.-Got up really early. Glad that we have internet service again. Missed face book especially. It's a good way to keep in touch. Have been listening to 'Handel's Messiah' several times a day. It fills me. And helps me pray. 'Behold the Lamb of God.' I pray without words because sometimes, what more can be said, than, "Behold the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sins of the world."
Kept my appt. with the doctor today to check lungs and toe. I'm glad I did. Have a sinus infection and my toe is infected also. She gave me a $48 dollar prescription for an antibiotic and scheduled me to have surgery this Friday to remove the nail to aid healing and to allow me to wear shoes. Feel relieved and that I don't have to keep being strong. There's a reason I'm so weary. Found Michael's airplane ornament at an antique store. I'm pretty tickled with an old Walt Disney toy that I can make into an ornament. I am getting each of the kids an ornament to symbolize something about their year. Hope they don't read this. Also got my shore girls some cute...Oh, I can't say this here. Naomi will read it!
Finished up the candle I made for Mom yesterday. I melted blue crayons in white wax and poured the results into a large empty raw honey jar. Then I glued glittery snowflakes around the outside and cut out a circle from a Christmas card that matched and glued it on the lid. It looks really nice and I realized how happy I am when I'm making something.
Went to Dr. Forand's with Susan and then we met Alli at Trinity and took her to Farmville with us. We dropped Susan off at New Life to prepare for her game and Alli and I went to the bank and to Discount Fabrics where I bought burgundy material to back The Last Supper piece. Then we got take out at Golden Palace and ate in the car in the parking lot. Then we headed to the game. Susan's team won their first game! I was sitting beside the wife of one of the refs. She is a professional coach and video tapes the games and they watch them in slow motion together and she tells him what he missed. It was educational and fun to be sitting beside her and I apologized to the ref for all the comments and loud noises coming out of my mouth that he will have to listen to as they hit 'replay.' I told her that Susan was my daughter and she said, "She is strong." Then I told her that it is her first year playing and she said, "I would never have guessed." The refs told Susan and Jenny that they were power  houses out there.
The guys teams were a lot tougher. There were some injuries. Ron and Kathy's Travis hurt his ankle. Meredith was there and was checking it out. April was taking good care of him. Poor guy.
Most of the kids on the teams are homeschooled and it was fun to see the homeschool community rally together to watch their kids play. They could not be involved without New Life School and the School could not be involved without these kids.  It's a win-win situation.
It was nice to see Sarah W. and her brother tonight. She's a real sweetheart.

Wed.-Busy day. Got haircut and ran errands in Appomattox. Stayed home in eve. with Michael and Susan and watched a movie, I think. All tired today. Wrapped gifts, made peanut butter fudge and caramel corn. Guys came home around 9. ( Rosalee's procedure to reopen the stitched ureter was successful today. When I got the news, I couldn't stop crying. So relieved.)

Thurs.-Guys left this morning at 3 to head to Fort Washington. Brought Dave P. home yesterday. He's not going back with them this week. Took Susan to cardiologist. He spent 6 months from the ages of 14-16 with the Amish Mennonites near Lanc. Pa. She's all clear. Asthma and perhaps anemic. Iron supplements recommended and better hydration. Should relieve symptoms. Took her to basketball practice and then I went to Belk and bought Phil his Christmas gifts. Another man and I were helping each other pick out ties to match the shirts we were buying. We both bought the tie the other recommended. I love the friendliness among southern Christmas celebrators. Sometimes it still surprises me. (Rosalee's having a rough go and is in a lot of pain. Still has fever.)
Susan and I watched her play 'Get Smart' when we got home on DVD. Guys surprised us (I found out at Belk) and came home this eve. instead of tomorrow eve. Freeman called Alli while he was walking in their lane and asked her to do him a favor. 'Please open the front door.' What a nice surprise!

Fri.-Getting ready for Christmas weekend with family. Went out to Appomattox, ran errands, (Naomi-keep your eye out for a pair of 'shoes' that are coming in the mail)  and had surgery to remove more poor banged up toe nail. It just did not want to numb up and it was rough for awhile. She prescribed hefty pain meds and I should be feeling pretty good even though I'll have to wear flip flops for a few more days. The thought of wearing shoes again isn't appealing even in this cold weather. The nurse was very sweet. She helped me go to my happy place-the shore with my shore girls and her happy place-resting in a hammock beside a stream with a book in hand, birds chirping- during the worst bit of the surgery.
 Philip worked on farm projects, Phil worked on paper work, Michael and Susan did lots of things. Philip and Susan went to the Lapp Christmas youth party in the eve. taking Lucy with them. Two more pictures for our Christmas newsletter were taken today. Now we need to print them and write a little under each picture. Then we'll get them mailed out some time after Christmas.
This week at Salvation Army, I bought Phil 3 pairs of jeans and 6 Ivy Crew shirts and also got a number of 1-2 dollar movies and DVD's. Pretty satisfying.

{Haven't been able to write for over a week. Internet people came out yesterday and discovered something had been fried during a storm. Glad to know the reason and forgive me if my
catch-up is disjointed. I'll be writing from previous hurriedly jotted notes. Wrote this on Jan. 1, 2013}

Sat.-Up at 4:40 AM. Had taken an oxycodone last eve at 8. It relaxed me but I didn't really sleep. On the trip up to Pa. I got very nauseated. Felt like my mind was leaving my body. Disoriented. Laid down in back seat unstrapped and felt better. Not taking that ever again. Arrived at Hertzler's in time for lunch-turkey, gravy, filling, green beans, corn, oriental salad, lettuce salad, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, sweet potatoes, rolls, strawberry and peach jam, cookies, coffee, and fruit salad. (We had the leftovers for supper along with caramel corn and ginger tea.) After lunch, we migrated upstairs and exchanged gifts and sang Christmas songs. Then we visited and played games all afternoon. Hit the sack over at Joe and Karen's around 8:30. I love this family.

Sun.-Leisurely breakfast of cinnamon and brown sugar coffee cake, homemade yogurt, fruit salad, grape juice, coffee, and homemade mozzarella cheese. They had made little loaf pans of mozzarella cheese and given them out to their elderly neighbors who rent them their land. I want to order the kit and make some. Gave us another reason to get a milk cow. Jonathan let me hold him all snugly and warm when he got up. 
Great to be back at Hopewell where God's Spirit is moving in a new and different way. Visited with friends for an hour at church and came back to have lunch with Mom and Dad. The kids had all gone their different ways. Alli, Freeman, and Susan, had lunch at Anne and Dave's. Philip was with some other friends at Petra and Michael was with Logan at Living Rock.  We all met at my brother, Abe's, around 4. My sister, Rosalee, Jim, and Katrina, were there. I had to cry when I saw Rosalee. It's such a relief to see her up and about although she is still running a temp. Kendra and Eric were there as well as Abby. Abby made us a DVD of movies Abie had taken in Christmas of '90 and Fourth of July, '91. They're great. Seth and Karisten came with their three children and Ethan, the youngest, warmed up to me and I flipped him around until I ran out of energy. We had such a relaxing visit with them. I love this family, too.
I have to mention the food that was there. Lindsay says that 100 years from now, people will be reading my blog to see what life was like 'back then.' We probably are not a true representative of mainstream America what with all our butchering chickens and canning soup, etc. but we represent some sort of America-land of the brave, perhaps.
For appetizers, we had a big circle of warm Brie cheese with crackers, Abe's homemade ham salad, cheese, and sweet pickles. For supper we had clam chowder, salad, regular filling, chestnut filling, regular scalloped potatoes, ham and parsnip scalloped potatoes, roasted halved carrots and parsnips, harvard beets, my mixed vegetables, red beet eggs, cranberry salad, Rosalee's pumpkin pie and cool whip, cookies, cakes, unusual popcorn, etc.
Before we ate, we sang 'Joy to the World' together, and I remembered last Christmas, when Mother was with us, and determined to remember her present constant joy, and that kept back the tears.
Philip and Michael left for home around 6 and got there at 11:30. Freeman and Alli went back to Annie's to spend the night, and Susan, Phil, and I, left around 7:30, and spent the night at a motel in Chambersburg. We slept soundly through the night and had a nice continental breakfast in the morning, and left for home around 7:30 and got home by noon.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Hertzler Doings-Dec. 10-16, 2012

Mon.-Did some wash and tidying up. Read Acts. What a movie that would make! Talked with Rosalee. I am concerned because she is running a fever. Hopefully, they did not pierce her bowel when they went into do their surgery. I wish I could be up there with her. I keep thinking how worried mother would be. No more worries for her. Alli stopped over to use the computer. Last time she was here, Ollie charged her. She was wearing a rust colored sweater. But now I am wondering if Ollie is upset that she is driving a red car. Red seems to get him raving mad. Guys went to work a few hours away. Susan wrote a report on Parkinson's Disease. She had basketball practice tonight. I mixed up a batch of gluten free dough. The idea is to keep it refrigerated and just take out the amount you need before you bake it. I want to try to make some gluten free cinnamon rolls for Christmas Day. And tonight, I may make myself a little pizza.  Susan put up a new profile picture for me. It's a photo of Phil and I that she took a few weeks ago. People are putting up such kind statements. Face book is community. For those who watch over others, it can be a parish or church community. I have been encouraged by all the prayers for my sister. I have felt so very loved and it is comforting to know that so many are praying for her.

Tues.-Busy Day. Charlie C's funeral at church. What a legacy he's left in his children. Susan to co-op, then lunch with Judy at her new place in town, back to Susan to run errands, then to New Life to meet up with April for a basketball game in Charlottesville, which they played well but lost. I continued shopping even though I was feeling increasingly lousy. Delivered a red pointsettia from 'The Three Kings' in Pa. to the King house down here for a friend. Alli came over and we watched a movie. I went to bed and woke up when Susan called and met her at CC around 10. She drove home. Deep sleep through the night on Alkaseltzer Night time meds.

Wed.-Running a slight temp. Called to talk to Rosalee. Got message. Jim called back. Rosalee increasingly nauseated, continuing fever, severe pain. Asked me to send out emails. Before I was able to, and while I was on the phone with brother, David, Jim called back. Took Rosalee into ER, and that is all that I know at this time. (Tests showed air pocket under skin.) Spent the day resting and waiting for news about Rosalee. Michael came home! For a month!

Thurs.-Michael took Susan to get basketball pictures. I rested most of the day.

Fri.-Still have fever. Phil got home around 8. Phil, Freeman, Philip, and Dave P. are building a school in Fort Washington. Setting trusses. Traffic horrific up there. We missed the staff party.

Sat.-Feeling better. Cleaned a little. Toe worse. Rested. Phil and Tom Hx spreading black fertilizer all day. Went to Grunert party. Dear friends and traditional stuffing-John's family recipe using sausage, spinach, and bread.  Plus turkey, gravy, ham, potatoes, green beans, sweet potatoes, apple pie, brownies, and ice cream. Missed the Mac party. No energy. Still no internet. Philip took Susan to see The Hobbit.

Sun.-Good service at church. Much heartache and sorrow in our midst and the world. CT school shooting took place this week. 20 children, 6 teachers, and 1 shooter-dead. Does Jesus care? I know He cares...His heart is touched with my grief...But we can still ask why. Jesus asks why. 'My God, why have you forsaken me?' and 'Why are you so fearful, oh you of little faith?' Because it's scary out there, that's why. If we could see our end from our beginning we would not be so afraid. That's where trust comes in. Because He sees and He says, 'Let not your heart be troubled. I will never leave you or forsake you. And when you leave this world, I'll bring you to myself, that where I am, there you may be also.' Meanwhile, arms are empty, aching to be filled. And lives will never ever be normal again. Oh God. Let the emptiness stay empty. Let it not be filled with busyness or pain numbing drugs or other people. Let the pain do its work. And let us put our hope in You.

Came home from church and Michael and Philip had arranged lunch for us. They had cut up the chicken and potatoes in the crock pot and had made a dish of raw vegetables and olives. Later, Michael and Susan joined the Warrens and other friends to see The Hobbit. Alli and I watched 'Elf' and a baking DVD. We're going to learn some gourmet cooking and baking this year from DVD's from 'The Teaching Company.'

Rosalee called and I realized that my cell phone hadn't been turned on so I wasn't receiving their updates. I thought she was recovering and since I was sick, I was trying to recover too. Couldn't talk without going into coughing spasms. Enough excuses. I just feel so badly that I didn't keep in touch with her. Long story short, after sonograms, Cat scans, hit and run drivers messing up their car, etc., continual pain and nausea, they have discovered that during the surgery to remove her uterus, that they stitched the tube shut that come from her kidney that gets rid of waste. They had to do surgery-very painful for her-to open up her back and insert a tube and she is now using a bag until next Wed. when they will try to go in and open it back up and insert a stint (stent?) or shunt. There is a 50/50 chance that will work and her doctor told her to pray. If that doesn't work, then they will need to do a more invasive lap. surgery. If you are reading this, please pray for my dear sister, Rosalee.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Hertzler Doings-Dec. 3-9, 2012

Mon.-Catch up day-Doing wash, tidying house, made chicken/rice/broccoli for supper in crock pot. Susan studying Science all day and then had basketball practice in the eve. Guys doing demo work at the Abbey. Alli over to use Internet. We mixed up a batch of Snickerdoodle batter and then chilled it while she went home to work and I worked around here. After I took Susan to meet Ashley, Alli came back over and we made Snickerdoodles and white chocolate macadamia nut cookies. Snickerdoodles are Alli's cookie of choice and the other is Philip's. (I make a cookie of choice that each person requests.) I froze a container of each for Christmas Day and for holiday sharing and had some left over for the family to sample. Alli and I watched 'Christmas with the Kranks' until the guys got home. Back to the chicken rice casserole. I made it in the crock pot. Instead of using cream of chicken soup, I used a can of coconut milk. It was incredible. I steamed the broccoli, cut up the chicken, added brown rice, added fresh lemon juice, garlic salt, soy sauce, and the coconut milk, and stirred it all together. It's all gone. Leftovers were packed for the guys lunches.

Tues.-Took Susan to homeschool co-op. Ran errands. She went out to Lynchburg with the girl's basketball team for their first game. I had some time with Dianna before coming home and putting groceries away. Weather was in the upper 60's-low 70's. Trying to figure out why my numbers jumped. Average about 20-30 hits a day. About two days ago, it jumped up to over 180. The only thing I wrote about that could explain it would be our experience butchering chickens. Readership is lower again today. I'm okay with that.

Wed.-Susan is a natural at basketball. And April is the world's best coach. Susan played for a little bit in her first game and made a basket. They lost but they played like winners.  Today was a productive day. Susan made huge advances in understanding Anatomy and organized a file with anatomy vocabulary words. I made BBQ meatballs-had some for supper, some for the guy's lunches, and froze a container for Christmas day. Also made one of our chickens in the crockpot. I inserted half a lemon in it's belly and put horseradish and garlic salt all over the top. So juicy and tender. Also made gumdrops with applesauce and jello, pecan kisses, lemon cookies, and formed buck eyes. I want to get all of our baking done so I can take cookie platters to gatherings this season. I also want some of everyone's favorites on Christmas Day. Philip and Susan went to CC for evening services. Phil and I hit the sack early. Freeman smoked a little pig in his smoker at work today. The meat fell off the bones and apparently it was delicious. The weather was in the 70's and I had the windows open. Had a nice long talk with Rosalee. Her surgery is on Friday and she is fighting a cold. Also, today I washed the crocheted Last Supper in a gentle cycle and I spread it on our bed over towels and turned on the fan. It dried in a few hours. Now I need to tack it against some dark material and have it framed. It's huge. It basically covered our queen size bed. Thank you, dear late Richard Putt, for giving me this deep and delightful legacy that you crocheted with your own two hands. It is a treasure that our family will cherish until the day we eat the next supper with Him.

Thurs.-Made monster cookies which happen to be gluten-free! Dipped Buck-eyes and Ritz pb crackers in chocolate. Took Susan to meet Ashley and Bethany at Trinity for basketball practice. She loves the sport, her team, and her coach. After practice, she got a ride to New Life for Musical rehearsal.
 Phil and I watched a DVD on discovering Noah's Ark on Mt. Ararat. I wish he could go to school and become a bonafide archaeologist, for he is one at heart. Shout out to Erin West right here. We at Hertzlerville love you!
  My toe is hurting badly today. Hoping it is not infected again. Am thankful for the warmer weather because I can't bear to wear even loose slippers. Flip flops are my winter boots.
I was thinking today about how I used to teach my children how to take a troubling thought and lock in in jail in the name of Jesus and throw away the key.  Philip still talks about doing that. Lately, though, I've found that when I am thinking overwhelmingly sorrowful thoughts, that if  I  think them in front of God and Jesus and the Holy Spirit, they take turns ministering to the pain beneath the surfacing thoughts. They are good and kind and they give me grace to help in my needy time. And, instead of running away from Them when I think thoughts that I think They wouldn't like, I think them in front of Them, and the bad thoughts seem to go away. And sometimes, we even have a good laugh about it. They say things like, "Look me in the eyes and tell me I'm not big enough to handle this."  Or, "Have I told you that it's your turn to worry about that?" Between the Three Of Them, there isn't anything They can't handle, but you wouldn't always think I believe that by watching my life. Faith is a process and when I have arrived, I will have arrived. Yippee!
I've been missing my Mother. I've been perusing the Christmas Cookie and candy recipe box that she gave me. I see cut out recipes mounted on cards with XXX written on them, meaning that they are especially good. I see her perfect handwriting on card after card and I see Grandma Landis's handwriting too.  I thought that the cloth manger scene that mother gave me was from Africa. But underneath each figurine is glued a paper that says in capital letters, "Y.M.C.A. CENTRE; AQUBAT JABER REFUGEE CAMP; JERICHO-JORDAN." I'm listening to her Christmas CD's. And I am thankful. Thankfulness makes the sorrow sweet.  I am thankful that it is not last year at this time.

Fri.-Woke early when Phil did and finished reading another MacDonald book. Wanted to get up but my toe hurt too much so I took a hefty pain pill-took it with some dried fruit and nuts, and feel back into a deep sleep.
I dreamed this dream.
My sister in law, Annie, was here, and she had set up tables in my kitchen where there was no room. Everyone was seated around the table, talking happily. Everyone meaning our whole family plus Annie.  And I had nothing prepared to serve them. Freezers were full of food. Cupboards were full of food, and I couldn't get into the places to look for food because someone was sitting there in front of them, blocking the way. No one was upset. They were just waiting, knowing I'd come up with something soon.  I woke up before I came up with anything. And I was glad to shake off the mildly disturbing dream.
One is not supposed to attribute great meaning to early morning dreams. But I must think about this dream. What does it mean?  I must have things made ahead of time, prepared for a moment's notice. Spiritually. Emotionally. Physically.  They must be attainable when the space is crowded. They must be ready to eat out of the jar. Like Peanut butter and jelly. As long as there is bread.
But the dream also showed me what FAITH looks like.
Faith expects.
Patiently waiting.
Cheerfully waiting.
Occupying the time by visiting with others.
Knowing that the answer is coming,
And acting like it's already come.
Bowl in place.
Utensils in place.
Water in place.
Ready to eat the answer.

Oh God, give me faith like this.
That laughs at the delay
even as Alli laughed in my dream.
That helps set the table for the coming Answer
even as did Annie.
That helps me look in the cupboard
even as Freeman did with a good natured grin.
That enjoys one another's company
as did Susan, Michael, and Philip.

While waiting they knew they would not leave hungry.

Holy, holy, God.
Thank you for this early morning dream.
Thank you for filling up my empty plate
with faith for the eating.


Made kale and bean soup, chicken salad with garbanzo beans, and made half a batch of sugar cookies, ginger snap dough, and froze a huge amount of cinnamon rolls. They will be ready to thaw and rise on Christmas day. Took Alli and Susan out to the musical to get ready and then I braved the rainy night and went out to Walmart. It looked like Christmas on Main Street what with the red tail lights and Green lights reflecting on the road and running into each other. I wanted to take a picture but the roads felt hazardous enough without me endangering others around me. Walmart was full and the clerk said that when it rains, people get depressed, so they spend money, so Walmart becomes crowded. She said it happens every time. I went back to the musical and sat with Betty Gibbs in the front row. It just gets better each time. I want to see it again and again. I love the depth and the simplicity of the plot. Without the search for purpose there would be no story to be sung. How well to remember this same truth in our lives. Without the search for Truth and Purpose-for they must be traveling companions-we would arrive at our destined end without scars and laughter and adventure. There would be no books written; no story to be told.  He who is there to welcome us at the end of our search is also our travelling guide and our Friend along the way. Oh, why do we fear, oh, we, of little faith?
When I got home, there was a message on the phone from Jim. Rosalee came through the surgery well. The cancer was on the surface. She will not need radiation. Although weak and nauseated, she should be able to come home by tomorrow eve. I am deeply thankful for this good news in the midst of the bad news of cancer. Thank God for the miracle of surgery.

Charlie Carneal went to heaven this morning at 2:30. I watched his daughter perform with excellence this evening, in honor of her daddy. If he had still been in the hospital, he could never have seen her perform, but from his viewing point, I bet he didn't miss a thing.

Sat.-Made the rest of the sugar cookies, gingersnap cookies dipped in vanilla coating, and a trial leftover pan of cinnamon rolls, and also some sloppy joe mixture made with bear and venison meat. Cleaned the house a little bit. Susan, Alli, and Freeman, went to New Life for two more performances in the musical. Phil is not feeling well nor is Philip. They were working in dusty conditions and they seem to have a full fledged cold and sinus condition. We will skip the Jones/Guild party tonight and not spread this around. Peter and Ivona brought back the big pig grill and are checking our Philip's new pig pens. I've been taste testing everything I've been making and I feel lousy again. Michael went to the musical with some friends and will stop in later. Three more days of school next week and then he'll have a break until about mid January.
I was reading in my Bible Book, Acts, Chapter 13, and read where when John the Baptist was nearing the end of his course, he said, "I am not what you think I am.  No, after me comes one whose shoes I am not fit to unfasten." John did not necessarily know that he was nearing the end of his life.  I wonder what would happen if we took on his attitude; his character. Instead of thinking that we need to advance, step up, make more, be more, what if, we just did what we were born to do?  We may increase in greatness as we do that, but that would not be our goal.  What if we could say today and everyday to our families and the world we meet, "I am not what you think I am. But there is One you must know whose shoes I am not fit to unfasten." What if, like the unprofitable servant, we would just do our duty, without looking for a thank you.  What if we would want God to increase and other's to increase and ourselves to decrease?  What if we were humble and contrite in spirit?  Then He would dwell with us in the high and holy place.  He would come in and eat with us.  and we would glory in knowing Him and not think twice about our works.
This is what I want.
This is what I long for.
To be anonymous in God.
And for God to be my all in all.

Sun.-Freeman and Alli went to CC to see Abigale and Serena get baptized. It was a sweet time and I was sorry to have missed it. I was challenged this morning to become more like Mary, the mother of Jesus, who was one who worshipped the Father in spirit and in truth. Here are a few sentences that  I wrote down from Pastor Jerry's sermon: "God wants to birth a miracle through ordinary me in this ordinary town.  We miss God's miracle because we are distracted by life's interruptions.  The distance between the interruption and the miracle is very small." Mary's life was interrupted by the angel's announcement. The interruption became her miracle. She received the interruption-not completely without question, but with completeness-"Be it unto me according to Your word." Interruptions are not an end in themselves. They are the beginnings of something new. Oh God, give me faith to see. Rather give me faith to believe even when I cannot see.  Grant me an humble heart that receives interruptions with the gracious attitude, 'Be it unto me according to Your word.'
After church we went to Tom and Helen's where we celebrated the girl's baptism with a delicious lunch.  It's been so long since we've all been together. I needed to be with Helen and the rest of the family again. We came home and watched a movie they loaned us-"No Reservations" and I wanted to cook again. I mean, cook tonight, because generally, I want to cook. Cooking movies just make me want to cook for a living. My mother was the world's greatest cook. We had company meals at every suppertime. And since she was an artist who did not have time to paint, she created beauty with the food she placed on a table. We used to marvel when we'd go out to eat at a restaurant buffet and she would bring her salad bowl back to the table looking like a masterpiece. Our salads looked like a volcano had exploded.  Her salad looked like a Rembrandt.
Susan, Freeman, and Alli, had one last musical performance today at 4. They are at the after-party as I write this. It will be fun to hear about the different awards. I'll write a little more after I hear from Susan. Ok. Apparently Freeman saved a lot of lives by knowing their lines too, so they gave him a whole book of lifesavers.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

He's Busy

I looked at my picture of Jesus just now and asked Him,
"How are you? Really, how are you?"
 And this is what I think I heard Him say.

I AM Busy.
Caring for you.
I never slumber.
I never sleep.
I am busy watching over you.

I AM Busy.
Bringing many sons and daughters
into My glory.
Sending out laborers into the field;
For the harvest is ready,
and the workers are few.

I AM Busy.
Like a Refiner's Fire.
Consuming the chaff in your life.
Watching and feeding the fire
so the grains that are left are
toasted to perfection,
Finely ground,
and made into bread
to give life to those around you.

I AM Busy.
Preparing My Bride
to meet her Groom.
Perfecting.  Purchasing.  Presiding.
I AM getting ready to
watch Her walk down Heaven's aisle.

I AM Busy.
Painting skies and seas,
Fields and trees.
Growing beauty for those
who still themselves to see.
I scatter the hoary frost.
I make rain and snow to fall.
I blow with my breath
and the warm wind comes.
Flowers bloom
and birds sing.
All creation worships Me.
I AM Busy receiving
Praise, Honor, and Glory.

I AM Busy.
Bringing Good News to the Poor.
Setting the Captive free.
Making blind eyes see.
The Lame to walk.
The Deaf to hear.
Comforting the Broken-hearted.
I AM Busy.
Giving peace to the anxious.
Making rough places smooth.
Making high and low places plain.

I AM Busy.
Setting a table.
Putting wine goblets in place.
Baking bread.
Pressing grapes.
Catching fish.
Building fires by the sea.

I AM Busy.
Rubbing your shoulders.
Holding your hands.
Kissing your face.
Whispering Words.
Being your Friend.

I Am Busy.
Being God Almighty.
Holy of Holies.
Prince of Peace.
Worthy Lamb.

I AM Busy.
Being there with you.
And keeping you here with Me.

I AM Busy.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Hertzler Doings-Nov.26-Dec.2, 2012

Mon.-Henry came for the day. What a delightful little boy he is! Alli brought the movie, "My Sister's Keeper" and we watched it while he played with toys. I laid him on my bed and he went right to sleep. I took a nap beside him on Phil's side of the bed. When Grandma Dianna came to pick him up, he wasn't ready to go. I laughed nervously and said, "Sorry," to Dianna. She said, "I love it." "I do too," I admitted.  Later, Susan had basketball practice and musical practice. Phil, Philip, and Peter, packaged up the scrapple this eve. Ivona came along and we had a nice visit. Peter brought me three bags of wheat free flour and fresh bread and a recipe to boot. Thankful for dear friends.

Tues.-Spent the morning on the phone with insurance company and specialist. Took Susan to Anatomy and Sara and I had a lovely lunch at Riverside. Sara is my guardian angel.  Picked up Suz and went to Walmart to get musical items-blue skinny jeans, black scarf, pink feathered earrings, dry cleaning packet, red lipstick. Also bought mardi gras beads at the dollar store to complete her outfit. Bought a big white poinsettia to take the place of a Christmas tree this year. Easier to keep a plant safe from Lucy than a Christmas tree. Took Susan to Worsham for basketball practice and came back to Walmart to finish shopping. April dropped Susan off to meet me there and I transported her to church for practice after a quick stop at Cook Out to get a Heath Toffee milkshake for Suz and fries for me. Phil finished up packaging the scrapple. I hit the sack early. Soon after 11, the phone rang. Freeman had welts and some tightness in breathing. Long story short-Alli took him to Southside. They took him in right away and gave him more benedryl, Pregnizone, and an epi-pen injection. His breathing had gotten tighter as they went in. They got home after 3:30 and slept until nearly noon.  Thankful that they didn't wait around and that they went in right away.

Wed.-Every day I see a watercolor picture I want to paint. The sky was gray and pink this morning and then white and blue. Birds silhouetted on black branches on walnut trees.  I weep with worship at the beauty of this breaking dawn.  Ollie sees me in here writing. He's trying to get in.  He flies up on the roof and then down to the ground right in front of my window. 
It's been 3 weeks since my toe injury. Doing better. Still looks bad. Can't wear shoes, but I could wear slippers for the first time this morning, for a little while.
Decorated for Christmas. I brought in the white manger scene and arranged it on the book shelf with white angel hair, blue ball jars with sand and goldish pebbles and red berries and white candles, and holly leaves and berries from Mickey's yard.
I put up the manger scene mother gave me. It's from Africa, I think. Made of cloth. I made some arrangement with the poinsettia and lights and fake fruit and branches and old fashioned ornaments. I put white fake pointsettias in a big white pitcher with lights at the bottom. I put a center piece on our dining room table with a manger scene that has room for a tea light in the back, a crock with a candle in it, and a candle in a natural holder.  My favorite 'decoration'?  I took the oval bread bowl from Kenya and wrapped a baby doll in a white pillowcase and laid it in the bowl with some greens and reds at the feet and head.  Jesus, the Bread of Life. Born in a manger. Laid in a bread bowl at the Hertzler house under their flat screen tv.
Susan is at musical practice. Philip went to Calvary. Phil and I will hit the sack early and keep the phone by our bed. I'm thankful that Judy answered when I called her last night to get some medical advice regarding Freeman. Definitely an allergic reaction to something.  Perhaps the detergent used to wash his Bethlehem outfit?

Thurs.-Cleaned the kitchen, made gingersnap cookies, wrapped gifts, deleted photos, took a nap. Had the eve. to myself. Phil and Philip went to Bedford. Susan, Freeman, Alli went to musical practice. Ate some chocolate, corn chips, and cookies. My joints are locked up and I feel lousy. As I looked through my camera and deleted pics, I came upon a photo of Emma twirling in her red Christmas dress just before Ollie attacked her. I think it had to do with her movement and her red dress. Poor thing. He took after her and she ran like crazy, screaming, to the house. Susan hollered at Ollie which just added to Emma's flight of fright. When we followed her inside, she was in Philip's arms. We have brought up this scenario several times in our family and we all laugh about it because of the look of sheer terror on poor Emma's face. Something must be wrong with us.

Fri.-slept in. Lots of interrupted sleep last night and I paid for eating wheat flour in the ginger cookies. Finally took a Benedryl and read for awhile. Tidied house, gathered all of my Christmas CD's, made potato soup, watched 'I Love Lucy', did some on line communications, took Susan to Alli and Freeman's for her transport to New Life, etc. First performance of musical is tonight.

Sat.-What a day! Butchered chickens over at Spiggles. 39 of theirs. 48 of ours and one naughty rooster. He took the most time. So scrawny we had to skin him because his feathers wouldn't come out. Phil, Philip, Susan and I went over soon after 8 in the morning and we were done before lunch. Phil took Susan home after the first batch so she could get ready to be picked up by Freeman and Alli to go to the musical performance. Two performances today. Back to the chickens. After we had all the chickens in the freezer or in the cooler on ice, we went over to Cynthia's and had her homemade chili, Nancy's amazing cornbread-with cheese, sour cream, and corn, baked right into it, and gingersnap cookies I made. It was nice to catch up with the kids-Caleb, Gabe, Wade, Olivia, and Gus. Gail wants to do this twice a year and we do too. So happy to have found an answer to raising chickens in Va. Came home. Put the chickens in several different freezers. Took a nap. Vacuumed and washed the floors while a chicken baked in the oven and rice and vegetables cooked on the stove. Played one of Mother's Christmas CD's that had an exclamation point on the front. I can hear why she liked it. It's dark outside and it's not even 5:30 but I think it might be my bedtime. Fun, fun day.

Sun.-Steve Fisher called from Zambia (I think) this morning. The barrels of goods and shoes have arrived!  Took 2 months by sea. All of the orphans were together and they were able to choose 2 pairs of shoes per person. It is the first time they ever got to choose something for themselves. Steve was really happy.  A little effort on this side of the world brought joy that will strengthen for the daily heavy battle on the other side of the world.
Discovered something today. The less I have it together when I arrive at church, the more I notice and experience His grace and mercy. Today, I was poor in spirit and He gave me the Kingdom of heaven.  Why am I always so afraid to be poor in spirit? When I find myself in a place that I can't
'fix', do I really believe that God cannot fix it?
The sermon caused me to consider my sins of gluttony and gossip. But my experiences today taught me that my sin of worry causes more sin than anything else, because when I worry, I intervene and try to control. Oh God. Increase my faith. Help my unbelief. Forgive my sin and heal my land.
I just noticed a quote I have written on an index card on my desk. It's taken from my Mother's Life Application Bible-notes on 1 Peter 5:7-"Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you." 'Sometimes we think that struggles caused by our own sin and foolishness are not God's concern.  But, when we turn to God in repentance,  He will bear the weight even of those struggles.  Letting God have your anxieties calls for action, not passivity.  Don't submit to circumstances, but to the LORD who controls circumstances.'
After church, Phil and I went for lunch at Country Cookin' and talked with more church friends there. Susan showed up with the Helton Gang. Then we headed to the parade and waited in front of Amish Originals with Danielle, Noah, and Carter. Gabby was on a date with her daddy Nate for her birthday. He had bought her new shoes after a lunch of pizza and her blue eyes were shining bright.
More and more of the Mennonite Gang showed up in front of our reunion store. It's a great way to see everyone from the different churches. Calvary had a nice portion in the parade. Graham helped to carry the banner. I think next year, Phil should drive a tractor and we should have a hay ride and go Christmas caroling in the parade. I think we could have plenty of people representing 'Immanuel'-God with us-as we sing together. After the parade, we walked down to Riverside, where we had parked our car. Then to Sweet Frog. I haven't had anything that sweet for a long time. Cappuccino, chocolate, vanilla, pumpkin. Then to New Life, where we met Peter and Ivona and Philip and had Betty Gibb's Balcony seats to view 'A Misfit Adventure,' starring, in my eyes, Freeman, Alli, and Susan. Man! These kids can act, sing, and dance! I loved the plot-finding our purpose-knowing where we belong-ultimately kneeling with others before Him. My tear-jerker moment came when Jay, (Josef), said that he had once been a follower of Christ but that it seems he has lost his way.
After the musical, we came home. Relaxed with another MacDonald book. Listened to The Messiah as we went to sleep. It is like listening to a miracle. And it never grows old.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Hertzler Doings-Nov.19-25, 2012

Mon.-Lovely relaxing morning with the Bantons. Set up the card table and played with colored noodles with the girls. Their artwork is all over the place. Gil stayed here with the guys. They were going to butcher two deer but the meat had frozen solid so they played Monopoly instead. The boys said they whupped Gil. Susan, Lindsay, the girls, and I, headed for Farmville. Stopped at Miller's and bought some things that cost 5x as much in Conn. Then we went to Amish Originals, the church office, and Greenfront. Then to Timmas for a wonderful lunch. The children played so nicely together. Then we took the girls to Barnes and Noble where they met Michelle and then the B's went to Jamie and Ginger's for Supper. Susan and I left them at the book store and went to Goodwill and then to basketball practice. Jamie and Gil picked Susan up at New Life and she came back home with them later. Jamie gave Gil and Lindsay much tile to finish their projects. I went to Kroger and got another turkey for 37 cents a pound. Went to Roses. They are going out of business after 83 years. Found some jeans and sweat pants. Came home to the boys. Made baked oatmeal and put groceries away. I was going to catch up on last week's blogging but the internet was down. Again.

Tues.-Sewed tubular pink Chenille scarves with Lindsay. Went out to 'The Little Things in Life" where Linds found the girls their Christmas dresses. I bought a creamsicle candle -at Country Charm. Girls watched 'The Sound of Music' and Emma sang. She has a voice that makes me stop what I am doing to listen. Took Susan to meet Ashley. Phil and Freeman came home. They visited with the Bantons for several hours and then we said our sad farewells around 7. Phil picked up Susan at Trinity. Philip played basketball at New Life and Michael went catfishing under the stars.

Wed.-Ordered some Christmas gifts. Went to see Dr. F. Caught up on wash. Some food and house prep. Beautiful fall day. Banton withdrawal pains. Mike here. Guys working at Abbey. Watched first several episodes of the A Team. Philip went out to CC in eve. God is answering my prayer that his passion would be used for Him.

Thurs.-Thanksgiving Highlights: In the afternoon, we went to Calvary Chapel to spend time with the Ollie Mast family. All but Rachel and her family were there. Not all of the spouses were there. Caught up with Freda and saw pics of her grandchildren and Kristy's wedding. Took family pics for them. Some stopped by later. For supper, Freeman deep fried our turkey. John and Jeanne, Peter and Ivona, and Brian and Heidi joined us and made our family complete. We had a really great time together. Brian and Heidi brought a broccoli salad. Peter and Ivona braked for a deer on their way here and their green bean casserole scattered over their car seats. We had some of it and also his good bread. Freeman and Alli made an apple pie and sweet potato casserole. John and Jeanne brought a pumpkin pie and ice cream. Besides all that, we had gourmet mashed potatoes, glazed carrots, cranberry sauce, butter, jam, and 7 layer salad. Philip and Susan went to Lapps and played Rook and watched the game. Mike went out with his friends. So the six of us were left and we talked non stop and learned all kinds of things. We were sorry to see them go. Highlight?  Philip laughed so hard he cried when Peter told a deer story that took place when he was 19. Peter said that he still has bad dreams about the attack deer.

Fri.-Relaxing Day. Watched some movies. Got towels left at HV. Visited with Mickey on the way back. Got cornmeal mixture ready for scrapple tomorrow. Washed lots of containers. Phil fixed clothesline. I made more mashed potatoes to go with leftover turkey gravy. Played Pick One in eve. with Phil and Susan. Philip went out to play Rook again and Jordan came here and hung out with Michael. Michael said that Jordan said in the course of a conversation, "Your mom has always been skinny." I'm going to kiss him next time I see him.
Todays highlight: Michael playing guitar and Susan singing. This is the stuff that brings joy to a mother's heart. This is the stuff that becomes famous some day. This is the extravagance of God and He and I heard them first.

Sat.-Scrapple making day. Austen, Jenny, John G., and Dave P, were also here to help us today. Butchered the pig yesterday. Cooked down the meat today. Ground it and the raw pork. Cooked it in a big copper kettle. Added the cornmeal mixture. Cooked for another 15 min. Used a kettle as a ladle and scooped it out into oodles of containers. Filled the back of the truck. Then loaded it into the big Abbey fridge. Has to chill until Monday night and then we'll freeze it. Ollie took a liking to Dave and followed him everywhere, pecking at his pant leg. Phil and Jenny went to Lapps. Good day. It's 5:30 and I'm ready to hit the sack.

Sun.-Relaxing morning. Had scrapple for breakfast. Went to church. Some sobering news of those in our midst facing the valley of the shadow. Good sermon about making our life count. Went to Ruby Tuesdays with Dianna and Steve. Then Phil and I went to the Methodist Church to listen to Handel's Messiah for 2 wonderful hours. Met some great people in front of us who travelled two hours to get there. Homeschooled their kids until college. Daughter was playing the violin. Son was following along in Handel's book. At the end, the choir came into the congregation and we all sang Handel's Messiah together. What a thrill! Home again for Thanksgiving leftovers. Susan spent last night at Lapps and went to CC, then to a football game in town, then to dance and musical practice. Michael went back to school. Philip is out and about. Bantons are leaving Va. and headed back to Conn. I miss them. 

Hertzler Doings-Nov. 12-18, 2012

Mon.-Oh boy. Here we go again. Writing this weeks diary from notes nearly two weeks after the fact.
"One thing God has spoken, two things I have heard: that You, O God, are strong and that You, O  Lord, are loving." Ps. 62:11.
Moving slowly. Alli and Susan went swimming while I read a book pool-side. Came back and had lunch and a movie. Susan studied Science and then I took her out to basketball practice. Went to Walmart. Then picked up Laura, then Susan, and met Betty and Kelly at Sho-gun. Lovely visit and twice as much food as we needed so we took some home to share. Betty took Laura home and Susan and I raced back to Happy Valley and found sheets, blankets and pillows for those who are spending the night there. Fortunately, they had not yet arrived. We turned on the lights and came home and put the groceries away.

Tues.-Raining. Phil home. Philip got a white surprise. Susan to co-op. Had lunch with Michelle at Ruby Tuesdays. Pictures to Karalee with Susan's help at Barnes and Noble. Ran into Chris and Whitney and got to hear their story. Susan to basketball. KNIT group in eve. 14 ladies there.
Brought my own lawn chair.

Wed.-Breakfast with Susan, Philip, Freeman, and Phil. Rosalee-grade 1 malignancy in the uterine lining/endometrial cancer. Hysterectomy laposcropically. Naomi called. Thawed turkey. Kroger-spend $25-turkey for 37 cents a pound. Laurel and Henry came out for a photo shoot. Joined us for a supper of deep fried turkey, french fries, and salad. Laurel took care of me. Made me sit down and baby my toe. I love her and Henry. They're family.

Thurs.-Sports physical for Susan. Dr. checked my toe. Infected and terribly painful. X-rays. Bone is chipped. Krogers. Home. Made triple batch of tapioca and honeyed sesame nut snack. Went out to Farmville for meeting. Susan-basketball practice.

Fri.-Phil and Freeman left to go bear hunting in Pa. Made a big turkey in dutch oven with lots of broth. I have a container of breast meat for sandwiches, 2 containers of gravy frozen and ready for Thanksgiving, and turkey vegetable rice soup. Susan went to practice basketball with Ashley Z. and then to musical practice. Alli brought her home.  Laurel came over and we visited while she dusted, swept the floors, and nursed my toe. What a delight she is. Michael home. Hadn't slept for 30 hours. Philip is cleaning the mancave.

Sat.-Philip butchered a pig. Michael, Suz, and I had a leisurely morning. Mike made ginger tea. Washed. Made homemade mac and cheese. Set up mancave for Bantons. They came around 4. Supper of hot dogs, baked beans, and mac and cheese. Showed them the piglets first thing. Visiting and watching a movie. All of us in bed by 8 except for boys who went out with their friends.

Sun.-Comfort, Conviction, and Calm. I am pastored. Sang one of my favorite choruses written by a man who prayed for Phil and I during separate sessions of the last Cleansing Stream Retreat. "And now, let the weak say 'I am strong.' Let the poor say 'I am rich,' because of what the Lord has done..." Gil and Lindsay know the Smith's well. Song went up to 'gold.' Communion. Honoring of Gil and Lindsay. They went to a friend's home for lunch and the afternoon. Philip took Susan out to eat with the guys. Alli and had lunch together here and talked until she had to leave for play practice. When Bantons came back, I took Lindsay and Adi for a ride on the gator to the river. Angel and Ollie accompanied us. Ollie nearly became Thanksgiving Dinner although none of us could eat him knowingly. He doesn't seem to realize that he shouldn't stop in front of the gator when it is moving. No more carefree gator rides for me.
We made popcorn and had some turkey sandwiches and watched 'Brave.' Alli and Susan came home during the last 5 min. of the movie. Michael went to hang out with cousin Meredith. Philip went to bed. Gil and Lindsay put the girls to bed and came back and drank tea with Susan and I before we all hit the sack.
Gil keeps saying how much he loves to be here with us. He said something this morning, as I plopped paper bowls in front of the girls because the glass dishes were in the dishwasher-
"I love how you are more concerned about being hospitable than you are concerned about entertaining us." Only, he said it a whole lot better than I just wrote it. I think it is easy to be hospitable to people like Gil and Lindsay. We don't do anything and they think we are the greatest. How easy is that?

I am not sure what morning this took place, but Adi woke up early and Lindsay told her to be quiet so as not to wake up the animals. The man cave is near the barn. Adi, aware of all kinds of animal mounts and skins gracing the cave wall, said, "But they're already dead."

Monday, November 12, 2012

Jesus and Black Friday

Black Friday-the day after Thanksgiving when people stand in line in the dark waiting for the stores to open so they can stampede in and grab the items of their choice. No one is thinking about the other people around them at this time. Unless, of course, one has brought a friend, to grab the other TV, so they can buy 2 for 60% off. Maybe someday I'll be brave enough to go.

I wonder if Jesus felt like a Black Friday Special when He went lake-side with His disciples that day.( Mark 3:7-12)

Imagine that you are really sick. Imagine knowing that your only chance to get better is based on whether or not you can push through the crowds and touch the man in the off-white robe. You wouldn't much care about the people around you nor would you care much about the man in the off-white robe. You would push and shove with what little energy you have to bring yourself and possibly a needy family member up to Him to touch Him or have Him touch you and yours.

Jesus, Son of God, Son of Man, was actually in danger of being crushed that day on the beach.

So He extracted Himself from the hundreds and thousands of shoving sweating sick people and got into a boat and moved out from the shore a little ways and from that safe distance He did what He came to do.

I wonder if I treat Jesus like a Black Friday Special?

Do I care for You, Jesus, or do I care for myself
and what You can do for me?

Do I look for Your face so I can see Your love for me
or do I look for Your face so You can see my love for You?

Do I press through the crowd to touch You so You can heal my broken heart, my broken home, my broken toe,
or do I press through the crowd to give You a deep cool drink of water, for surely, You too, must thirst.

My hands in my face.
Do I only care for You because of what You can do for me?
Have I not loved You for Yourself, alone?

O God, let it not be so!

Oh Jesus, help me love You and care for You.
What do you want?
What do you need?
How can I love You more?

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Hertzler Doings-Nov. 5-11, 2012

Mon.-Susan and I were measuring our height and a construction duty tape measurer fell on my toe to the right of my big toe, splitting it open and exposing the nail under the skin. Long story short: Went to the doctor. They stitched the nail to the skin after popping it back in. I'm on heavy pain meds. Thankful it didn't happen during a snow storm and that my daughter can drive.

Tues.-Friends helping me with transporting Susan to co-op then to basketball practice. She has a ride from New Life to 460 meeting place. I voted and came back home and slept for 2 1/2 hours. Taking it easy. Not able to focus on reading or writing or typing well. Not in any pain though. Looks like snow.

Wed.-Got up to a quiet house and turned on face book to see who won the election. Obama did. All I could hear in my head was that song, "You know our King won't be riding on a donkey next time." And then I thought of how Jesus rode into Jerusalem, on the back of a donkey, meek and lowly King. And I posted that verse on face book. I wondered if people read it like I read it. That Jesus sits King over donkeys. Over political parties represented by donkeys. He sits on top of and He is King. And perhaps that is how He will come riding into America. Perhaps the donkey and the effects of the donkeys reign will cause people to cry out to Him. Perhaps this disaster will be our salvation. Perhaps He knows how to ride elephants also.

I posted another verse-"He has shown you what is good and what does the Lord require of you. Do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with your God." That is what I know to do. And it's not up to the President anyway. It is up to God's people. Will we humble themselves and pray and seek His face and turn from our wicked ways? For then He will hear from Heaven, forgive our sins, and cleanse and heal our land. I am sobered that so many put their trust in a 'change'. But I am more sobered that so many put their trust in 'no change.' Continued deprivation of the nation's soul. "I will give them what they want," He says. And He did. Sobering.

I stay peaceful with my friends and family who voted differently than I did. But I will always vote life. For the little ones have no voice. And woe to those who cause them offenses. For it would be better to have a millstone tied around their neck and be cast into the sea, than to cause an offense to the little ones. What's more offensive than being aborted?  Human rights must start in the womb.

Heard from my sister. Talked with Janelle. Talked with Judy. Ordered blood work test. Tidied bedroom and bathroom. Made bear/venison meatloaf. Talked with Pastor Chris Hayward-President of Cleansing Stream today. He called here. Humble down to earth man. Did some wash. Cleaned off desk. Rested. Was on face book more than usual. Thinking and trying to hear God. What is He saying in all this?

Thurs.-Sad to the bone. Not that my candidate of choice did not win, but that we, the people, no longer cherish the Word of God and that our love has grown cold.  How else do you explain laws that allow the destruction of a smiling, kicking baby in it's mother's womb when so many childless parent's arms literally ache to hold that very baby?  How else do you explain that marriage is no longer 'male and female created He them?' We are doing away with the sanction of the family. Father. Mother. Baby. Nothing's sacred. Israel's not sacred. And Israel is sacred to God. Marriage between a man and a woman is sacred to God. Babies are sacred to God.  Write Your laws in our hearts, O God. Take Your finger and write on our tablets of stone. Let us hear you and know you and hold you sacred.  And may our awe of Your holiness be stronger than the leeway of laws in our land.

Took  Susan to Kelly's while I went to a meeting. Betty took her to basketball. Went to Walmart and read in the parking lot at church while waiting for Susan. Praying for my sister. Praying for our family. Praying for this country. Praying for the world.

Fri-Sun.-having some internet issues so I'll write this week up. Friday-homeschool and housework day. Went out to New Life in eve. with Susan and Alli for their fall fair. Bought some chicken BBQ. Susan stayed for dance practice while Alli and I went shopping for little girl gift boxes. That was so much think about what little girls 5-9 years old would like to receive. Watched Susan's soldier dance. She is so good. Picks up moves so fast. Talked with Will and Don today. They're our boys from Chi Alpha.
 Next day, Sat., Alli and I came out to the Women's Retreat. About Ruth and Naomi. Had a great time. Nothing can separate us from His love. Came home and had some time alone before Phil and Susan got home from Rich's where they saw no deer. Philip didn't either.
 Sun.-Nice morning visiting before going to church. Great service. Learned about the tabernacle. Susan and I are reading about that in the OT right now. I love the history lesson along with a present application. So deep and good. Came home and rested. Phil listened to lectures on the Civil War all afternoon. He has been listening for 5-6 hours. He will remember everything. My mind started to wander after 15 min. of it. Susan stayed out for dance practice and will come home with Alli and Freeman. Made sweet potato fries and potato latkesfor supper. Rosalee was anointed with oil today at Weaverland.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

The Way He Spoke

So, in this venture of discovering the authority of Christ revealed in the Gospel of Matthew, I went back and read the Words that He spoke. I discovered that every single one of His words was spoken with authority.

 I'm not talking about someone who is an authoritarian-someone who 'enforces obedience'. I am talking about true authority-someone who has the 'power and influence resulting from knowledge, prestige,etc.'

To the devil in the wilderness He said,
"Scripture says, 'Man cannot live by bread alone; he lives on every word that God utters.'"
And "Scriptures says, 'You are not to put the Lord your God to a test.'"
"Be gone Satan; Scripture says, 'You shall worship the Lord your God and worship Him alone.'"

To Peter, Andrew, James, John, He said, "Come with me, and I will make you fishers of men!"

And then the whole sermon on the mountain was spoken with authority. He was an authority on everything He spoke and did. And the people were astonished at His authority.

To the leper, He said, "Be clean."

To the centurion-"Go home now; because of your faith, so let it be."

To the windstorm-"Peace, be still."

To the demons-"Begone!"

To the paralyzed man-"Take heart. Your sins are forgiven. Rise up and walk."

To Matthew the tax-collector, He said, "Follow me."

To the woman who touched His cloak in a crowd-"My daughter, your faith has cured you."

To the professional mourners at Jarius's house-"Be off!"

To the little dead girl-"Arise!"

To the blind men, "As you have believed, so let it be."

To the disciples on a mission trip-"Go to the lost sheep of Israel. Proclaim that 'the kingdom of Heaven is upon you.' Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers. Etc.
Be wary as serpents, harmless as doves.
Be on your guard.
Do not worry.
Do not be afraid."

To the messenger sent by an imprisoned, disillusioned, John the Baptist, He replied, "Go tell John such things as you see. The blind see, the lame walk, the dead are raised, and to the poor, the gospel is preached. Blessed is the one who is not offended in me."
All this authority and I am only at the beginning of Chapter eleven.

This is no namby-pamby Christ we serve.
I am 10 feet tall.
This is the Christ whose backbone is in me!

Holy, Holy, Holy.
Holy, Wonderful, God!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Christ's Authority

In reading the New Testament like a book without chapters,
 I have discovered a central theme.


 Jesus did what He did because He had been given authority to do it.

Yes, it was compassion that moved Him to help people
but it was the authority given to Him by God His Father
 that gave Him the right to heal,
 the right to deliver,
 the right to forgive sins before He died for them.

Continuing in Matthew 8, we see that Jesus had authority over the storms in nature;
 and then He delivered two men from the devils that bound them and sent the demons into pigs who committed suicide by jumping off a cliff into the lake and drowning.

(Being a mother of a son who raises pigs,
 I confess I have questioned the economics of Jesus' willingness
to agree with the demons desire to be sent into the pigs.
 But perhaps money was Most Important to these townspeople,
 for they begged Him to leave their area lest He cost them more in their ways of livelihood.

  Oh, if only they could have seen the Great Deliverer in their midst.

 If only they would have brought their sick babies
 and tormented teenagers and broken marriages to Him.

 But alas, they only saw what He cost them
 and they missed their opportunity to receive a healthy baby back into their arms.
 They missed the thrill of throwing out crutches.
They missed the hum of a happy home.
  They missed Him!)

So, knowing that He was not wanted there,
 He got in the boat and crossed over the lake to come back home.

He wasn't there long until some men brought him a paralytic lying on a bed.

He saw their faith and said to the man, "Take heart, my son; your sins are forgiven."

Some of the lawyers standing there thought to themselves, "Good grief. That's blasphemous talk!"

Jesus was a mind reader.
Still is for that matter.

He said to the lawyers, 'Why do you harbour evil thoughts? (If you're going to have an evil thought-don't harbour it!) Is it easier to say, "Your sins are forgiven," or to say, "Stand up and walk?"  But to convince you that I have the right and authority on earth to forgive sins'-He now addressed the paralytic-"Stand up, take up your bed, and go home."'

And he got up and went home. The people were filled with awe at the sight,
 and praised God for granting such authority to men.

(Taken mostly from the New English Translation)

Christ's Authority.
Authority to forgive sins.
Authority to heal sicknesses.
It's as easy for Him to do one as the other.
He has the right to do it.
And we have the right to come to Him for any spirit, soul, or body need,
because He's granted us the free will to do so.

If we understood Christ's authority
we would understand our authority
because He gave us His authority
to do the works of God.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Authority and Faith

Jesus was being followed by a crowd of people when a centurion soldier came up to Him.

 He stated his dilemma. " A boy of mine lies at home paralyzed and racked with pain."

Jesus said, "I will come and cure him."

The centurion replied, "Who am I to have you under my roof? Only say the word and he will be healed. I myself am under orders and I have soldiers under me. I tell them what to do and they do it."

Jesus heard him with astonishment and turned to His followers saying, "I tell you this: nowhere, even among my own people, Israel, have I found such faith."

Turning to the centurion He said, "Go home. Let it be just as your faith said it would be."
And so it was, at that very moment, the boy was healed.

True authority has its roots in humility.
Jesus did only what His Father wanted Him to do.
His authority was rooted in Another's authority;
in Another's will.

The centurion was also under his commander's authority.
He obeyed his leader just as his own men obeyed him.

He recognized in Jesus as One with authority
who was also under authority.

This leader of men was humble.
He didn't ask Jesus to heal the boy because he was positionally entitled to have healing for his son.
He said, "I am not worthy for you to step foot in my house."

He asked Jesus to heal the boy because he had compassion for his son.
He didn't want him to have pain or be paralyzed.

Humility, compassion, and the understanding of true authority
had taken root in the centurion,
revealing the greatest faith
that Jesus had ever found.

Oh, to have faith that astonishes God.
Matthew 8

Thursday, November 1, 2012


I began reading a hardback edition of the New English Translation of the New Testament today. It's written like a book so I want to read it like a book.

Jesus had preached what has come to be known as 'The Sermon on the Mount.' "When Jesus had finished this discourse the people were astounded at His teaching; unlike their own teachers he taught with a note of authority."

Their own teachers laid down their law, and burdened their people;
 not lifting a finger to help them carry that burden.
 Do this. Do that.  Don't do this. Don't do that.

They operated out of a desire to control others rather than having an internal authority that leads.

Authority is deep-rooted in a person's character.
 What one says to do is no different than what one does.

 This authority comes from the inside out.

Control comes from the outside in.

  It's like trying to put a lid on a bubbling spring.

Control is interested in behavior.
 It's not interested in a person's attitude or character.

Control is about the appearance of a thing; what's on the surface.
Control does not consider a person's heart.

I looked up these two words in Webster's.

Authority-power or influence resulting from knowledge, prestige; the power or right to give commands, enforce obedience, take action, or make final decisions; jurisdiction

Control-to exercise authority over; direct; command; to curb; restrain; regulate

One 'earns' the right to have authority through the influence of integrity, knowledge, and prestige.

One 'takes' the right to control by forcing one's own will over another's to direct, command, and regulate that person's will and behavior.

No wonder the people were astonished at His teaching.
For He spoke with the knowledge, prestige, and power that was His
 before the world was formed.

If we understood authority
we wouldn't need to be control freaks.

When I was in my teens, I went to a Woman's  Retreat where Matilda Kipfer was speaking. She said something that I never forgot. She said, "Manipulation is as the sin of witchcraft because it makes people do things against their will."

Oh, God.
Help me understand.
Help me operate under Your authority
and not out of my own need to control.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Hertzler Doings-Oct.29-Nov.4, 2012

Mon.-Rainy and windy. Guys worked around here. Washed and cleaned in the morning. Alli came over and Susan, Alli, and I watched 'The Bucket List' and  'Sense and Sensibility.' I made some peanut butter cookies. Had toasted cheese and tomato soup for supper. Judy called telling me that she accidentally threw away a vital part of her smile. She found it later.

Tues.-Slept little last night between Sandy's storming and Phil's snoring. Took Susan out to Anatomy class. Met Candi at the Japanese Restaurant by Sun Chase. So thrilled with her happy news. Picked up Susan, went to Bailey's to figure out car lock situation, then to Walmart and the Post Office to mail a package to Makenzie, then to Healthy Living, and then back to the Japanese Restaurant to have supper with Betty and Kelly. Just starting to catch up with Betty and we had to leave for a 6:00 basketball meeting at the school. Came home and put groceries away and then I went down to our KNIT group house and got to hear the last half of Beth Moore's first teaching on James. There are 17 ladies signed up for the class. We are from the neighborhood. Alli was there for the first time. I met Dawn S. We range in ages early 20's to late 50's. We're from a number of different churches. My mother belonged to a neighborhood Bible Study group for over 25 years. They had great times together. I'm thrilled to be part of something that encourages unity across church cultures and unites us in the truth that is ours in Christ. Got to home around 10:30. A lone coyote was howling. It wasn't far away. I started to walk towards it. It had to be just on the other side of the first gate behind the silos. Suddenly I thought again and decided not to face the lone coyote alone.

Wed.-Susan studied muscle names and functions for Anatomy while I went to Lynchburg to the leg doctor, Sam's, Walmart, and Kohls. Came home and canned nuts. Put nuts in glass mason jars. Do not put on lids. Put in oven at 200 degrees for one hour. Take out one or two at a time. Wipe edge of jar with damp cloth and screw on lids. They all sealed. These will keep for years and years. Saw this on homestead survival on face book.
Read that 62 are dead from the hurricane Sandy, and that 6 million are without power. Atlantic City, NYC, have really been hit. We don't get the news but I read about it online. Some people are sarcastically joking about the lack of the storm in these parts and the hype that accompanied the storm. I am thankful that it didn't hit us, but there are those whose lives will be forever changed because of this storm, and I don't think we should make light of it. Many  prepared more than those of us who didn't need it but all of their preparation did them no good and things got way out of their control. Gleaning for the World was at Sam's Club today asking for donations to help those on the east coast. I think they are a good group to give things too. They'll get supplies to where they are needed. As will MCC-relief.
Took Susan to CC for youth group. Was following a car on the way home and then realized it was Janelle. I followed her into her driveway and she had just been trying to call me to see if I wanted to see scary Micah. He was dressed like a bloody person with a knife through his head. I'm not so sure I liked it but I think he liked that it scared me a little bit. Phil picked up Susan for me so I could soak in the tub with a good book.

Thurs.-Profitable day. Got the remaining years schedule written out for Susan day by day week by week all on one paper. Made some vegetables and beans and black bean soup. Need to lose 15 pounds in two weeks! Insurance company is after me! Did wash, exercised, saw Dr. F. Watched two movies with Susan that I can chalk up to Social Studies after she had worked on school for several hours. One movie-'Lost in the Barrens' filmed way up north and the other in Australia.(Captain Johno.) Guys working in Richmond and getting home late. Potato soup is warming on the stove for them.

Fri.-Dragging all day. Doing a serious detox. Eating mostly vegetables and beans. A bit of rice. Rice crackers. Applesauce. A piece of cheese and a few walnuts. Feel shaky and hungry. Headachy. I'm breaking out in hives and my right arm, right leg, and scalp itches. Am quite sure I also need to stay away from corn. I've been wheat free for about 6 weeks and now I'm going deeper. No more raw sugar or sucanat in my coffee. Weaning off of caffeine. Took a walk to the river and thought I lost Ollie to a female turkey. He went right in the river after Angel and enjoyed it so much he started to walk down the edge of the river. I couldn't call him back. Finally, I left and thought I'd walk down the field aways and try to cut him off. But just that quick, he was running beside me. He would run up to be beside Angel and then wait for me to catch up and then run up to be beside Angel and then wait for me. I brought in alot of green tomatoes and most of the red ones. The frost had already hit the plants last night. Also cut most of the lettuce and pulled up more radishes. It's supposed to frost really heavy tonight. I covered the crops in the cold frame with a blanket and the Thai mat. Susan is feeling lousy too. Detoxing. Exercising. Studying British Lit. We made a huge container of applesauce and I baked an applesauce cake from The Mennonite Cookbook that my mother used to make. I served it warm with warm applesauce over it for dessert at suppertime. Alli picked up Susan around 6 and then went to dance practice at New Life. Got the nicest note in my message box from Becky and Mark. Encouraging words. Life giving words.
Meredith came by to pick up the trailer to get more apples tomorrow. She brought me two pints of honey from The Rancks and also some of her own apple cider. She's bringing us more apples, too, as a thank you for using the trailer. I love my nieces and nephews so very much. Listened to a few sermons on-line today and took some notes. Phil's washing his hunting clothes in no-scent detergent to get ready for muzzle loader season tomorrow.
Wendy B. posted on face book that she thought we should post what we like about the candidate we endorse instead of posting negative comments about the one we do not. I posted, "Mitt is so handsome." She haha-ha-ed and said that was not exactly what she had in mind.

Sat.-There was a heavy frost last night and my beautiful flower garden is fried. I brought in green tomatoes yesterday and put them in the back room in a cardboard box to see if they will ripen. Today was a great day. I called Crystal, my best friend from grade school/high school who is a pediatrician with a medical question as a favor for a friend and she had ready professional kind answers. Freeman, Philip, Michael, Susan, and Phil were getting their weapons ready to go muzzle loader deer hunting in the late afternoon/eve. As I write this, they are still all out and it will be dark in half an hour. I tidied the house, washed clothes, made some food, and went to visit Dianna and had a wonderful time with Henry and Isaac, two of the greatest little boys God ever made.

Sun.-Nice morning at home with the family. Got to church a little late. Good service and learned some things about the anointing oil that I'd like to blog about on its own. Came home and had vegetarian chili and watched Monk and visited with Michael before he went back to Liberty. Philip went to Lapps for the eve. Susan took a nap.  Ollie is adorning our hood as I type. Earlier he was pecking at the door and we let him in for awhile. It's not quite 5 and the sun is setting. I'll like getting to bed early and waking up early. Detox Day #4. Third day of hives. Lost 2 pounds only. Staying on this side of hungry. Mind is clear and joints are not as stiff. I have never detoxed this deep before. Missing my wheat and popcorn, especially on a Sunday. But nothing tastes as good as healthy feels and I'm getting there. So, help me God.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Hertzler Doings-Oct. 22-28, 2012

Mon.-Catch up day. Michael flew over the guy's working, Travis included, and waved his wings. Inspired them. Mom and Dad called in eve. and Phil and I had a nice chat with them
Thinking about 'underbelting.' In the karate tournament this past Sat., a number of the kids were under belted. They wore a 'lower skilled' thus different colored belt to compete with lower skilled kids even though they were higher skilled. They did this so they would win more medals. The lower skilled kids were frustrated to tears and their parents were totally ticked off. And who were the real losers? The kids who won because their parents encouraged them to cheat in order to win more medals.

I wonder if we do this in Christendom. I wonder if I under belt so I look like I am less so I look like I am more in comparison to others. I wonder if I under perform so people don't know what I really can do so I won't be made responsible for more. What color is my belt of truth?

Tues.-Took Susan to Anatomy class and had lunch at Appleby's with DDF. Susan found a ride out to Liberty Baptist with the Rozier's for play practice. Found a book at Goodwill last week about 3 sisters running a B&B. One of them is on the pastoral search committee. The story tells about their search and find of a pastor. The former pastor was their father and the pastor of the church for 50 years. Relevant book.
We met Kathy and Tom L. at the Babcock House for supper. Had the most incredible medium well done steak, mashed sweet potatoes with apples, asparagus, salad, and spinach crab bisque, and shared 'a slice of sin' with Phil-gluten free chocolate 'cake'. Oh my. Jerry was insulted that I didn't want my steak more rare. He says it ruins it to make it less rare. We all went over to Liberty afterwards so they could hug Susan good bye. When she and Philip were over at Happy Valley the other day, Kathy's brother and wife and their friends were there. They saw Susan and asked, "Is this the Susan who mows your lawn?" "Yes," said Kathy. "And she sits in that tree with her weapon and brings home the bacon, too." We brought Susan home from LBC and Philip and Phil moved all the roaster chickens over to their new pen. Much easier to do in the dark.  A few more weeks until butchering day. Fun Fun!

Wed.-Achy and dizzy. Arm itchy. Ate out twice yesterday. Dessert. Too many tortilla chips Mon. and chips all weekend. Not getting enough water.
Read Heb. 11. By Faith Sara received strength to conceive and she bore a child when she was past the age, because she judged Him faithful who had promised. Or, we could say it this way. Because she judged God as faithful to keep His promises, she herself had faith to receive strength to do the impossible. Too often, we try to conjure up faith to believe God to keep His promises, but if we believe that God has faith-that He Himself is faithful to keep His own promises to Himself-then we can have faith to receive the strength to do our part in His keeping of His promises.

Canned 17 jars of applesauce from most of the 3 bushels Meredith gave us for using the trailer to transport apples for her to resale and make into apple cider. For supper, I made a kettle of chunky applesauce, Freeman's bear/pork link sausages, mashed potatoes, and succotash.
Graham came out to Calvary Chapel tonight for youth group. Doreen and I caught up in the parking lot. We both headed our own ways and I met her after church at our meeting place on 460. Hopefully, we'll start getting together on some Weds. and we'll bring Graham to CC. That's the plan, anyway.
Michael flew to Dulles Airport and back this eve. He had three new experiences added to his 'file.' Cross country flying, 2 hours night flying, and landing in a very big airport. He was thrilled and nervous at the same time.

Thurs.-Nice morning at home. Sat on my mother's chair on the porch, reading Rosalee's George MacDonald book while sipping on a mug of coffee. Sun bright and warm. Beautiful days are about to replaced by a Frankenstorm. Systems from north, west, and hurricane from south are about to converge on the northeast in a few days. We may lose power and get lots of rain. I want to make potato soup and vegetable soup ahead of time so it will take less energy to heat them up. Will keep tub full of water and fill up our drink coolers with water too. Oil lamps are ready to go. Must freeze some large containers of ice to put in fridge in power goes out to keep things cool. Must gather all the lettuce and tomatoes too before they are ruined. It's supposed to hit us Sat. and by Tues. eve. it's supposed to get down to freezing. I am loving these warm fall days. But, I'm praying for a cold winter. We must have the ticks and bugs killed off. Lord protect the bees and good little insects but the ticks must go.
Made apple oatmeal muffins. These are a winner. And no sugar. Just honey. Put two mystery meat roasts in the crock pot. Tidied house. Went out to LBC for play practice from 2-8. Dropped Susan off and went and got my hair cut. Yikes! It's really short. Went to Walmart and Krogers and then back to LBC to set up pizza supper for kids and then watched the performance, "Get Smart."

Been having internet troubles. Apparently, the downloading of blueprints used most of our internet time for the month. Haven't had a chance to write much. Maybe because I am in taking in mode. Reading and reading and reading and thinking and thinking and thinking. It will have to come out eventually.

Fri.-Warnings of big storm headed this way. Cold air coming down from north, rain from west, and hurricane Sandy from south all to meet in the northeast. Made potato soup, chili, pb oatmeal chocolate chip raisin cookies, baked oatmeal. Took Susan out to Liberty for play performance. I went to Baine's during the Jr. Play and got a decaf and sat outside at the little table writing pastor appreciation notes. Went back over to church and 'helped' the senior girls get ready during intermission. They didn't need my help. Enjoyed watching 'Get Smart', especially appreciating the miracle of Hunter as he played Maxwell Smart. It was nearly a year ago that he had that terrible accident and where his brain was badly damaged. I remember when his family rejoiced that he could brush his teeth. Now he has memorized hundreds of lines and is more himself than ever which is truly a wondrous miracle. Thank you dear God.
The white dove is flying around with other birds of his kind. Philip says they are pigeons. But that white pigeon looks like a dove.

Sat.-Cleaned house. All wash finished. Took Susan out to Liberty for another performance. Walked on the sidewalks around the church for about 20 min. with walking sticks. Watched the Jr. Play. It was so well done. Fairy Tales in a courtroom setting. Phil came bringing Tommy and Bethany with him for the Sr. drama. Went until about 9:30. Susan played a blond and she did really well as did all of them. We stayed for awhile afterwards, cleaning up to get ready for their church service tomorrow. Then took Susan to MacDonald's while I ran to Walmart for a quick trip. Guy in parking lot was battening down the cart holders in the parking lot with cement blocks. When high winds come, they start to move across the parking lot since they are not anchored down.  Went back to MacDonald's and joined the rest of the cast and their parents for a late night french fry. Got home around 11:30. Michelle was there, picking up Bethany and Tommy.
Michael worked around here today and got the wood stove up and running and a load of trash to the dump.

Sun.-Sweet Sunday Celebration Service-baby dedication, communion, baptism, pastor appreciation, and good sermon. Came home and had lunch with Michael, Philip, Travis, and Jordan. Philip and Michael made spaghetti with sausage and Alfredo sauce. They had left over ribs from their party last night that they saved for Susan, Phil, and I. Mike went back to school. Philip went hiking and the boys went their own merry ways. We three watched the Bucket List. My first time. Liked it. Also watched an Alaskan movie about a couple who gets stranded.
Concerned for Pa. Del/Md., Conn. family and friends. Looks like Sandy is going to be rough on them. Pa friends posted pics of empty shelves in Walmart.
I am pretty ready but I will be glad if we don't lose power.  Some are sarcastic about 'the big storm' that we don't seem to be getting, but that means that somewhere else, others are getting it. I'd rather have practice runs before we get really hit because someday, it will be our turn. Just as knowledge is power, so is the practice of that knowledge power. The more prepared one is, the less one will be scared to face the storm. But some 'storms' come suddenly without warning and one can only trust that one's well is deep enough and one's pantry is stocked enough to survive the ferociousness of the storm.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Hertzler Doings-Oct. 15-21, 2012

Mon.-Freezer open. Cooked thawed bear meat and fish. Soup for weekend melted too. Went swimming with Alli and Susan. Overdid it and was so stiff and sore afterwards. Susan picked up some swimming tips quickly. Alli is a good swimmer. Showed her how to do the side stroke and she got it right away. Unpacked after CS weekend. Watched American History AP DVD.

Tues.-Out to Farmville. Used tire replaced at Baileys. Walked into Healthy Living and right away, a man hanging out there, pointed at me and said, "She smiles! What is the secret?" I am sure I looked like a deer in the headlights and and then I said quietly, "God within...I believe." He shouted, "Yes!" and gestured victoriously with his fist. Than I got shy and looked for my things. For some reason, it made me think about Sunday, when I sat down beside Sara. She said, " smell good." I said, "It's Jesus." And then we laughed hysterically. Went to goodwill to get a different outfit for Susan's drama. Some others were there from her homeschool co-op and helped her pick out something that had better work.

Wed.-Finished reading 'The Mermaid Chair' by Sue Monk Kidd early this morning all bundled up with a sweatshirt and sweatpants under my covers. Cup of coffee beside me and socks on my feet and I got comfortable. The book didn't make me exactly comfortable. I cried and cried and loved Phil even more than before. And now I am inspired to write. And paint. I have a date to begin painting. Mid January 2013. After Christmas is boxed away. I can't remember ever being this excited for Christmas. I'd put up decorations right now but Susan won't let me.  Back to the art idea. I am not sure if my art will be good to look at from a human perspective but I am longing for another 'tongue' to express the Allness of God; His beauty and darkness and light.

I've been thinking about extremes. The sadder one has been, the happier happiness is.
The more profound one's happiness; the sadder sadness is. If you trust and are betrayed, that betrayal runs as deep as one's trust. And if you have betrayed someone, the trust bestowed upon you is all the more treasured.  One appreciates wealth more fully if one has been poor. And one feels the pang of poverty more deeply if one has been rich. The darker the room, the more brilliant the light when it appears. The deeper the despair, the more room there is for hope.

Cleaned over at Happy Valley. Phil and crew have been setting trusses. Hard and difficult work.

Thurs.-Spent the day in Lynchburg, mall shopping and Goodwilling. Looking for drama items. The best way to make Susan happy is to surrender the steering wheel to Susan. One of the pigs is having babies. Another pig will be made into sausage on Sat. Molly will be in hog heaven that day.

Fri.-Janelle, Micah, and I left before 9 and headed towards Jamestown. (Susan is home alone taking care of Buddy, studying, cleaning, etc. Alli picked her up at 3 and then they went out to musical dance practice in the eve. ) We enjoyed Jamestown-the museum, shipyard, and fort. Micah was especially interested in the ships, the blacksmith, and the leather maker. We sat in on a lecture in the church. The only thing I remember is the fact that one could be executed if one missed attending church for three Sundays. Not in a row, either. We checked into the Powhatan Time Share resort shortly after 4. Janelle's friend, Faith, had given her a few days of her vacation time. I got the queen size bed. Micah found his TV channel and Janelle and I heated up our suppers. Later we went into the jacuzzi which is an interesting and somewhat dangerous experience with a lively 8 year old diving here and there. Janelle and I watched 2 Monks and we were all in bed by 10:05.

Sat.-Slept straight through until 5:30. Got into the jacuzzi after locking both doors and did my stretches. Janelle and Micah woke up around 7 and we ate breakfast and watched the movie, Yogi Bear. From 10-4, we were at a karate tournament. Micah participated 2 or 3 times. A karate teacher/judge talked to me for awhile. Found out much about his life in a short time. His name was Frank. Bruce Lee, the famous karate guy, got Frank's signature before he himself became famous. Bruce Lee is the one who made karate famous in the 70's. Karate is on the table for the next Olympic Games. Chuck-oh, what's his name-the guy from Walker Texas who does karate....anyway, Frank and him were just talking a few weeks ago.(Chuck Norris!) Frank said he is just an ordinary guy. Frank has 10 children and is married to a woman who is 30 years younger than him. He has four year old twins. He served in the Vietnam War and studied karate in Japan. Anyway, that was interesting. People are people.
We stopped at Martin's on the way back and got microwave popcorn and broccoli salad. Enjoyed the eve. watching a movie and eating popcorn and playing in the jacuzzi. Micah had us close our eyes and try to find his right pinkie toe. That was an experience.

Sun.-Exercised alone in the hot tub again. Leisurely ate breakfast and packed up. Headed towards Williamsburg which is beautiful in the fall. Met a local author who was friends with Martin Luther King Jr. and was employed under GWBush Sr. He championed the 401k's. I bought his book and he signed it. It's quite a story. I think everyone should have a book written about them. The human spirit is amazing. Micah was interested in everything. I developed a loud case of hiccups. I said to Micah, "You're going to have to figure out a good way to scare me." A few seconds later, he began telling me a story about a ghost. He kept on for a good 10 min. or so. After awhile, he asked, "Do you still have your hiccups?"  They were gone! He did a good job scaring me without me even realizing he had a plan. We talked with a re-enactor. He asked Micah if he was apprenticed. No..What skill would you like to learn? He said, "Blacksmith." As we walked away, he said, "I really wanted to say 'Astronaut' but I knew he wouldn't have known what that was." Pretty smart little man. Ate at the Cheese Shop. After we came home, Fitz's dogs were here. I called her and she came over. She got to meet Ollie, who pecked her tires. Her captured dogs began to growl and Angel barked ferociously at them. "Don't mess with my turkey!" said she. Had a nice time catching up with Susan, Philip, and Phil. They butchered yesterday and Mike had two of his friends from Liberty there to help. (The Internet wasn't working all week. It's nice to have it back.)