Being Woven

Medicating Carefully — Guest Post @ Beyond the Nook

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A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.  Proverbs 17:22

As caregivers we must, to the best of our ability, make sure that our care recipient remains safe.  Although caregiving includes many important components, like keeping hope and joy alive around them and gracing them with unconditional love for their mental and spiritual well-being, their physical comfort and best interest is also a priority.  As you well know, this is not always easy.  As “A joyful heart” is not always a simple matter to come by, so “good medicine,” medications themselves, can either be a hindrance or a help to one’s joy or safety.  A caregiver’s attentiveness to this most vital of issues is a must.

Most people, as they age, need medications.  (Please join me @ Beyond the Nook for the rest of this guest post.)

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Chaff

God looked upon the Israelites and called them to be His special people, His own.  Over and over again, He told them, I am the Lord thy God.  The first three commandments God gave to Moses for His children, in Exodus 20, are:

“I am the Lord your God, Who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.

“You shall have no other gods before Me.

“You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.  

“You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate Me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love Me and keep My commandments.”  Exodus 20:2-5

Even with these commandments carved in stone, the Israelites had idols and worshiped them, not just once, but many times.  Their reasons for doing this spoke of their disobedience to God.  God could not turn away from their sin.  He would judge their iniquities and bring punishment.  If the current generation died, having never received punishment for their sins, the children or grandchildren, even beyond, would be the ones punished for the iniquities of their ancestors.

winnowing

 Therefore they shall be like the morning mist
or like the dew that goes early away,
like the chaff that swirls from the threshing floor
or like smoke from a window.  Hosea 13:3

מֹץ

mots

blown away by the wind

Chaff is the part of grain that is beaten out (winnowed) before taking up the wheat, rye, barley, etc., to make into flour.  Chaff does not become part of anything we eat.  It is threshed up and into the air, taken away from the wheat by the wind and then burned.

Although the children of God were disobedient at times, in the natural world, they might have thought that the morning clouds would bring rain to their parched lands, but the rain did not always come.  When the early dew settled upon the grass, it often would be evaporated by the hot sun, leaving no moisture for the earth.  Finally, this passage says they are as the smoke, presumably offensive, quickly dissipated into the air.  God saw the children as the chaff when they disobeyed, light and not worth keeping.  He would have to winnow them as wheat, being driven away from the threshing floor.

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“I baptize you with water for repentance, but He Who is coming after me is mightier than I, Whose sandals I am not worthy to carry.  He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.  His winnowing fork is in His hand, and He will clear His threshing floor and gather His wheat into the barn, but the chaff He will burn with unquenchable fire.”   Matthew 3:11-12

ἄχυρον

achyron

a stalk of grain from which the kernels have been beaten out

straw broken up by a threshing machine, chaff

Jesus tells us that one day, He will come to the threshing floor to separate the wheat from the chaff.  There will be a purging.  The last judgment will consist of winnowing—distinguishing doctrines and works, saints and sinners.  There will be some, maybe many, among us who look like wheat yet are chaff.  There may be those in the church who believe they are “good enough” and that this winnowing does not apply to them.  It is not our works or how good we are that, alone, are counted, but do our hearts belong to Jesus?  The heart must be completely His.  The soul must seek God Who calls.  The body, mind, and soul must draw near to God for He will draw near to us.  Jesus teaches us that He will gather His wheat after winnowing all of us on the threshing floor.  The true believers are valuable and useful, ones made of substance, whereas those who would be considered the chaff are useless, worthless to His Kingdom, light and able to be carried about in the wind to doctrines and to people who are not of the One and Only True God.

so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. 
Ephesians 4:14

Chaff

The chaff will be burnt up.

At the time of winnowing/judgment, the wheat will be brought into the barn where the true believers will be safe, together, completely separated from all that is not of God, and will be purified.

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We live together in this world, the wheat and the chaff, and must discern the difference.  Which am I? is a question needed to be asked.

Father God, I pray that as I walk the remainder of my days here on this earth, I will be as wheat to You and not as chaff.  May I not be easily blown away as I once was.  I am so grateful to You, LORD, for forgiving me of my sins and my disobedience.  I so desire to be worthy of You.  May I be of use to You in this world now and always forever after.  Use me as I am, growing me as I learn from You.  May my presence in this world be of value to Your Kingdom now.  I so love You and want to walk worthy of You in my speech, my behavior, my actions, through who I am and in the ways others see me.  I want to grow more and more into the image of Christ, Your Son.  Guide me and teach me in ways You want me to go, LORD.  I pray in the powerful Name of Jesus.  Amen.

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Caught But Not Trapped in New Age Religion ~ Guest Post @ Blessed Transgressions

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I am honored to have a guest post up today at a new online magazine, Blessed Transgressions.   This is my story.

(Some of you have read this (as I have posted it here @ Being Woven in conjunction with Soli Deo Gloria Sisterhood.  Please feel free to share it with others.)

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Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.   John 4:1

I was raised in a Christian home, learned about God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit. (Please note, for later in this conversation, that I said, “…learned about.”)  We were a Navy family and moved every two to four years, therefore changed churches without changing denominations. I was not introduced to Jesus as Someone with Whom I could have a relationship. In my senior and my fifth year of college, I lived away from home and did not attend church at all. Shortly after college, I married a man who never had attended a church and wanted nothing to do with one so having a spiritual conversation was not even an option. (Let me throw another fact in to be absorbed a bit later: Before marrying him, I heard a quiet voice say to me, “You are not to marry him” which I ignored completely.”) Upon divorce ten years later, I felt “something” was missing from my life. I set out to find a church that I felt comfortable in and landed upon one with a very strong singles’ group. This church was a different Christian denomination from my childhood one, yet also did not introduce me to Jesus, only spoke about Him.

When I moved back to be near family again, I found another church. It was what I came to know as a New Age church.  Join me @ Blessed Transgressions for the rest of my story.

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My Spirit Faints Within Me

Fainting

The word “faint(s)” in Psalm 142 and 143 seemed unusual as I read these Psalms.  We read 142 one evening and then 143 the next and there that word was again.  So I decided to look it up and see where God would lead me.

When my spirit faints within me,
You know my way!
In the path where I walk
they have hidden a trap for me.  Psalm 142:4

When my spirit grows faint within me,
    it is you who watch over my way.
In the path where I walk
    people have hidden a snare for me.  NIV

When I am afraid,
    you, Lord, know the way out.
In the path where I walk,
    a trap is hidden for me.   NCV

When my spirit was overwhelmed within me,
You knew my path.
In the way where I walk
They have hidden a trap for me.  NASB

Therefore my spirit faints within me;
my heart within me is appalled Psalm 143:3

Therefore my spirit is overwhelmed within me;
My heart is desolate within me.  NASB

Therefore my spirit is overwhelmed within me;
My heart within me is distressed.  NKJV

So my spirit grows faint within me; my heart within me is dismayed.  NIV

My spirit is weak within me; my heart is overcome with dismay.  HCSB

עָטַף

`ataph

(aw-taf’)

a primitive root; to shroud, i.e. clothe (whether transitive or reflexive); hence (from the idea of darkness) to languish:—cover (over), fail, faint, feebler, weak, hide self, be overwhelmed, swoon

David reminds me that I may become overwhelmed with fears, with darkness, with frustration, with a variety of emotions, with the things that are happening all around us…in our country and world.  A mind can become oppressed from the inside, while outward troubles can bring on these fears as well.   Matthew Henry states in his Commentary, “It is sometimes the lot of the best men to have their spirits for a time almost overwhelmed and their hearts desolate, and doubtless it is their infirmity.  David was not only a great saint, but a great soldier, and yet even he was sometimes ready to faint in a day of adversity.” *

I have not literally fainted to the ground, but the fears and emotions have overtaken me over and over during my life.  It is just human for most of us, I believe.  Yet, David reminds me that, although, the likes of Saul, Absalom, armies of many sorts may be holding us captive, reaching out to God is the answer.  God listens.  He hears our prayers.  God knows where we are…physically, spiritually, mentally, emotionally.  He watches our backs.

Jonah calls out to God ~

When my life was fainting away,
I remembered the LORD,
and my prayer came to You,
into Your holy temple.  Jonah 2:7

Jonah knew that God was with him.  He desired to be close to his LORD.

David also knew just Who to call upon and Who would hear him.  These men praise God for His faithfulness and His protection.  I can sense the love of God through their words too.  I know God is near.  I know He is with me.  I know these truths.  Teach me more, my Father. 

Hear my cry, O God,
listen to my prayer;

from the end of the earth I call to You
when my heart is faint.
Lead me to the rock
that is higher than I,

for You have been my refuge,
a strong tower against the enemy.

Let me dwell in Your tent forever!
Let me take refuge under the shelter of Your wings!  Selah  Psalm 61:1-4

Father God, You are my Refuge, my Shelter when I become afraid of the future, of growing older, serious family illnesses, the violence in our country and in our world.  Father, my heart feels weak and weary sometimes.  You know how things affect me.  Yet, there is only one answer to any darkness of heart or mind…You are that Answer.  I call upon Your Name and You hear me, my Father.  You treat me with love and care.  You nestle me near to Your breast and I know comfort.  I know love.  I know gentleness.  I know You…more and more with each day.  Oh, how grateful I am, my Father.  Thank You for teaching me the Truth in Your Word.  Thank You for healing my faint and stumbling heart.  I want to walk in Your ways and only those.  I fail and yet You forgive this child.  I desire to walk uprightly.  Guide me, LORD.  I love You so.  How can I love You more yet I do with the passing of each day.  I pray in the Truth of Your Son, Jesus.  Amen.

Illustration of heart with heartbeat, electrocardiogram. Vector illustration

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* from “Matthew Henry’s Commentary on Psalm 143”

Hear

hearing God

No matter what the world looks like through our human eyes, God knows the Truth. He knows all.  No matter whether we think He is listening to us, responding to us as we pray, He is doing so according to His will.

He is Omniscient.  He is Omnipotent.  He is Omnipresent.

I call out, “Hear me, O God.”  Consider and hear me O LORD my God;… Psalm 13:3a

Do You call to me so that I listen to You?  

“Hear, O My people, and I will admonish you; O Israel, if you would listen to Me!”  Psalm 81:8

You are Omnipresent, always with and before me.  Your Word is before me.  Your grace surrounds me.  Your mercy rains upon me. 

You are Omniscient, all knowing.  You see all.  Nothing is hidden from You, Father, even that which is hidden in our hearts.  You know.

You are Omnipotent, all-ruling, almighty. You have authority over all, my Heavenly Father.

Too often I do not hear You because I am making noise, asking, begging, telling.  I desire to sit before You, but I get busy and forget.  I am sorry.

What I need is…

quiet

stillness

calm

tranquility

peace 

openness

desiring to hear the One and only One.

“Hear me, O LORD; hear me that this people may know that You are the LORD God and that You have turned their hearts back to You again.”  1 Kings 18:37

Listening — hearing …

Your tender love speaking to my heart

Your Word to me personally on the pages of the Holy Bible

Your still, small voice clear and beautiful, quiet and sweet into my ear

Listening is loving so much that I am calm and still, waiting.  

Your wisdom sails into my being and stays.

Hearing is having ears and a heart open that I may use Your wisdom as I walk with You.

I want to listen; I want to hear — so much so that Your voice becomes a piece of me that naturally flows in and through, a non-ending stream.  I desire You, My LORD.

… “Brothers, you know that in the early days God made a choice among you, that by my mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the gospel and believe.”  Acts 15:7b

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Obedience walks with listening.  How can I be listening if I am not obeying You? 

Hear, O Israel, and be careful to obey… Deuteronomy 6:3a

Observe and hear all these words which I command thee, … Deuteronomy 12:28a

  

I am … I want to be…

a listener

a hearer

an obedient child 

that God has called me to be.  

I believe.

“Whoever is of God hears the words of God….  John 8:47a

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Picture 1:  http://www.hem-of-his-garment-bible-study.org/hearing-from-god.html

Picture 2:  https://onepassiononedevotion.wordpress.com/tag/hearing-gods-voice/

Guest Post @ Blessed Transgressions

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A new magazine, Blessed Transgressions, is online.  I am honored to have a guest post up today.  Some of you have read this (as I have posted it here @ Being Woven), but please feel free to share it with others.

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The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. ”  (Psalm 23:1)

רָעָה
ra`ah

Shepherd

= to tend a flock; i.e. pasture it; intransitively, to graze (literally or figuratively); generally to rule; by extension, to associate with (as a friend): companion, keep company with, devour, eat up, evil entreat, feed, use as a friend, make friendship with, herdman, keep (sheep), pastor, shearing house, shepherd, wander, waste.

Come on over to Blessed Transgressions for the rest:  http://blessedtransgressions.org/were-the-sheep-he-the-shepherd/

 

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A Whole Heart

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With my whole heart I seek you;
let me not wander from your commandments!

I have stored up your word in my heart,
that I might not sin against you.  Psalm 119:10-11

לֵב

leb

inner man, mind, will, heart, understanding:

inner part, midst:

midst (of things)

heart (of man)

soul, heart (of man)

mind, knowledge, thinking, reflection, memory

inclination, resolution, determination (of will)

conscience

heart (of moral character)

as seat of appetites

as seat of emotions and passions

as seat of courage

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Our heart is a place where we can be filled to the brim with things of God or things of this world.  We have choices to make.  Our heart can be wholly set apart to God and for Him.  Or it can be wholly or even partially set upon the things that lead us away from God, lead us astray.

God calls us to Him.  He wants us near to His heart.  He loves us so and draws us to Him.  He has given us many promises which are truly ours through obedience to Him.

And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you.  And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.  And I will put My Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My statutes and be careful to obey My rules.  Ezekiel 36:26-27

The meaning of the word heart that is in Psalm 119:10 (the Hebrew לֵב  {leb} ) occurs 591 times in 546 verses in the Hebrew concordance of the NASB.  Throughout these many verses, heart can be interpreted to mean one of the many definitions listed above.  Yet, they each and all lead to the same place: our steadfast relationship with God, our Maker.

Dependent upon what that relationship with God is at any given moment, we stand with Him or against Him.  He wants us with Him always, but we are sinful and can reject Him.

See that you do not refuse Him who is speaking.  For if they did not escape when they refused Him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape if we reject Him Who warns from heaven.  Hebrews 12:25

In our darkness, we can easily walk away from the One Who made us for Himself.  We take that which He gives to us and then pretend we never knew Him.  He is the One Who knit us in our mother’s womb and saw us before the world even existed.  Yet we can be stubborn and stiff-necked, thinking that we know what is best for us.

It was I who knew you in the wilderness,
in the land of drought; but when they had grazed, they became full,
they were filled, and their heart was lifted up;
therefore they forgot Me.  Hosea 13:5-6

I know I have walked away and thought I could control my own life and would control it.  I thought I had the ability to be in charge.  I wandered in the desert without enough water.  I left peace and found agitation.  I shooed comfort away only to know fear.  I could not find shelter because I wanted to pitch my own tent, yet had nothing from which to make it.

My God will reject them
because they have not listened to Him;
they shall be wanderers among the nations.  Hosea 9:17

But, one day, I looked to the heavens and saw the Hand of God reaching to me.  I knew He had never left me nor did He forsake me even though I was one miserable person.

For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked.  I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness may not be seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, so that you may see.  Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent.  Behold, I stand at the door and knock.  If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with Me.  Revelation 3:17:20

God blesses me so.  I want to praise Him with my whole heart.  I come wholly to Him.  I know I am not able to be whole for Him at every moment, yet I desire to be.  My heart and soul and mind and body are His, wholly His.  When a part fails God, I seek His forgiveness and His comforting arms.  I praise You, Father. 

Sing aloud, O daughter of Zion;
shout, O Israel!
Rejoice and exult with all your heart,
O daughter of Jerusalem!  Zephaniah 3:14

My Abba Father, thank You for loving me unconditionally.  I do not deserve it, but I desire You more than anyone or anything.  I am hungry and thirsty and tired and needy.  You have fed me with the Bread of Life, given me Living Water, rested me on Your bosom, sheltered me under Your wing, provided all that I need.  You are gracious to me, Father.  I am so grateful.  LORD, I offer my whole self and pray that I stay on Your straight path.  I want to be wholly Yours with my whole heart.  May this be so.  In the Name of Jesus, I pray.  Amen. 

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Photo of Fuchsias:  http://flowerinfo.org/fuchsia-plants

Thinking of you, Daddy, this Father’s Day

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I remember your arms around me, Daddy.  I feel your love flowing into my heart, see your smile, and sense your kisses.  You were the best Daddy in the world for me.  I still miss you so.

Thank You, Abba Father, for blessing me with this man for my father.  I learned love, patience, kindness, and gentleness, and silliness.  You truly gave me a gift.  I wish it had lasted longer, LORD.  One day, I may understand why You took him so early in his life and in mine too.  Until then, though, I will remember what I can about him, and know that You will help me to remember my Daddy.  In Christ’s Name, I pray.  Amen.

 “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the LORD your God is giving you.”  Exodus 20:12


With love always, Daddy and Mama too, ~ your linda lou

Father’s Day – 2016

MUSIC MEMORIES IN THE MIND OF MY WONDERFUL FATHER

Horace Williams, Jr. commented on a post here @ Being Woven (April 29, 2016/Memory’s Music) which so touched my heart.  It was in regards to the topic and the love he has for his father.  I have invited him to be my guest today.

In honor of Father’s Day, I welcome Horace Williams, Jr. of Pleasing to the Potter.

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My father is a wonderful man!  I am blessed to be his first born son and his namesake.  I have not written specifically about him on my site even though it was intended in the parent references I’ve made on several occasions.  My father and I have a very unique relationship but as I have grown older and wiser, my desire is to live like he lives in representing Jesus Christ.

Today, I want to share with you some highlights so you can know him a little better and then I will convey how music has impacted my father’s life and continues to do so.  Growing up as a child, I can remember my father and his love for classical music.  I did not really understand it at that time and I can remember thinking where are the words?  How can you listen to music with no words, I would ask myself?  Two of his favorite composers are Beethoven and Tchaikovsky.

I admit as I got older I began to understand his affinity for classical music.  In fact, I am listening to one of my favorites (Tchaikovsky) right now as I type this.  He composed so many great pieces of music such as The Nutcracker, Swan Lake, and my favorite, his Piano Concerto No. 1.  As a former piano player myself, I can only dream to have played like this, but I digress!  Now back to my father.  Here are some highlights to give you a “peek” into just who he is.

Fantastic facts about my Father:

Faithful Husband.  Dad and Mom celebrated their 50th wedding Anniversary this year!

Fantastic Father of five children.

Fortunate Grandpa to 11 amazing grandchildren.  I say fortunate because my parents had to be wondering if I would ever give them a grandchild.  I think my mom stopped asking me fifteen years ago!

Fluent in 4 languages. (at one time he was) English, Spanish, French, and German

First class Army Veteran.  Dad was a distinguished Army Captain of the MP’s during the time of the Vietnam War.

Former Pastor, Church planter, and Home Missionary.  It was during my dad’s time in the Army that He came to know Christ as his Lord and Savior and felt led to attend Bible College.  He then became a Home Missionary as God directed him to start a church.

Free Taxi Driver.  I can still remember either dropping me off or picking me up in the wee hours of the night from work regardless of how many hours he had worked that day.

Frequently Awkward Adviser.  I think because my father saw us as so different, he had a hard time figuring me out at times.  Although he always advised me in love growing up, our differences made it hard on him at times.  For example, I loved playing sports; he played in the band.  He loved Sci-fi movies and I prefer a great mystery or love story.  Oh, how I wish I had listened to those “awkward” conversations growing up.  Looking back now, they were filled with such Godly wisdom.

Fighting a difficult battle with the debilitating Alzheimer’s disease.  Yes, you read correctly.  My father now suffers from Alzheimer’s.  A few years ago my father was t-boned while driving my car as I was recovering from the stroke.  My car was totaled; he was okay, just a little shaken.  It was at that moment we wondered if there might be something wrong with the safest driver I have ever known.  I remember the day he told me his diagnosis was confirmed.  He kept repeating it to anyone who would listen… I have Alzheimer’s.  It broke my heart!

As I watch Alzheimer’s progressively attack my father’s brain, I go to God in prayer asking for peace in my father’s mind.  I do not understand the disease and I’m not sure anyone does.  I’ve read research articles and reports on the subject.  It was stated in one article that sometimes Alzheimer sufferers remember things buried in their heart.

 

I feel my father’s love when he greets me with a kiss and calls me by my name.  His love for music is still evident.  For our parent’s 50th anniversary, all of my siblings pitched in and we got them tickets to the symphony.  It was a performance of both Beethoven and Mozart.  My mom said he absolutely loved it!  He sat still for the entire two-hour performance and did not move a muscle!  (I would include a picture but they are all pretty dark.)

Dad and Mom- Memory Post Dad

Mom also plays the local classical music station when they are driving as too much talking seems to perturb him at times.  My father has always been a fan of the “old school” hymns.  He never really has been a fan of the contemporary Christian music.  He loves hymns like The Old Rugged Cross and How Great Thou Art.  One hymn that has special meaning and seems to have stayed with him through everything is My Hope is Built on Nothing Less.  It is a beautiful and inspiring hymn from the 1800’s, a song overflowing with hope in Jesus and our foundation in Him.

Just a few days ago we all went to visit our parents.  He sat down in the chair next to me and asked me how I was doing.  I told him I was feeling okay, but was having a little pain.  He looked me in the eye and recited the first verse of this song to me.  It was all I could do to keep from crying.  I got up and kissed him on the forehead as I whispered, I love you, Dad.  I’m not sure I will ever understand why this is happening to such a kind, loving, and brilliant man with a heart for God.  I trust my Father in Heaven and I ask Him that He bless my earthly father with peace of mind…even if it’s the few minutes of listening to or hearing his favorite songs.

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I’ve included a beautiful video of the song my dad recites to me every time he sees me.  I pray you are encouraged and inspired.  Please pray for my father and grace for my mother.

Blessings to you and yours,

Horace Williams Jr.

Jr at 40-Edited-2015

Bio

I am a single, Christian man who loves the Lord Jesus with all his heart.  I am also the oldest of five siblings.  In the Summer of 2010, I suffered a devastating stroke that could have taken my life.  My entire left side was paralyzed due to a ruptured blood vessel in my brain!  However, God has given me a second chance and I want to glorify Him every day.  As my love for Christ grows deeper, it’s my desire to share my faith with others.  I pray you find help, inspiration, and encouragement as I share with you about the transforming power and love of God.

www.PleasingtothePotter.com

Birds and Me

BE FOREWARNED:  many photos and two short videos  : )

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I have been watching birds on cameras through Cornell University Laboratory of Ornithology or American Eagle Foundation/USDA.  I watch the Albatross in Kauai, Hawaii, the Bald Eagles in Washington, D.C., Ospreys in Missoula, Montana, and the Red-Tailed Hawks in Ithaca, NY.  There are others as well, but these have been my favorites to watch.  Yes, I am a birdwatcher in real life too, but these birds either do not visit South Texas or they are hard to spot.  I certainly do not get to watch them raise their young.

Birds species can be so unique in the way they care for their young.  These that I am watching have laid the eggs and then sat upon them, frequently tidying up the nest around them.  The mate that is off the eggs goes hunting or fishing, bringing the feast back to the nest.  With some species, only the female sits on the eggs while the male hunts and gathers, whereas other species share in both the nest and hunting duties.  It is quite interesting to me.  These same ways continue once the eggs have hatched and they have their nestlings.  When very young, the parent continues to sit upon the babies until food arrives.  The parents are so careful in the way they straddle and finally sit over the young.  Take a look at this video to see this phenomenon.  Those large yellow talons never touch the chicks.  (The video is only 53 seconds.)

As they grow, there is less sitting over the nestling and more sitting with the nestling.  This young Laysan Albatross cuddles up to a parent in the nest.

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Red-Tailed Hawk parent gently feeds first of three born to this family in Ithaca, New York on the Cornell University campus.

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Mr. President and The First Lady in the National Arboretum — 2016 with Freedom and Liberty:

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From tiny (above) to juvenile (below)

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Parent birds teach their young.  The juvenile bird begins to imitate the parents in feeding themselves with food brought by a parent, flapping their wings and hopping, practicing for that day when they will fledge (fly on their own).

This is Liberty and Freedom dancing in the rain.  The video is 9:35 minutes long, but just watch the first few minutes of practice and more practice.  It will make you smile when they begin hopping too:

 In the case of Albatross, the parents head to sea, leaving their young to practice alone for their big day of flight before heading out to sea.  It is on its own for food for a time as well.

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One of the three Red-Tailed Hawks takes flight from near the nest:

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A fledgling often stays near the nest, continuing to be fed by the parents for some time.  Once flying becomes second nature to the juvenile bird, most receive lessons in hunting and fishing.

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“The eagle is observed to have a strong affection for her young, and to show it, not only as other creatures by protecting them and making provision for them, but by educating them and teaching them to fly.  For this purpose she stirs them out of the nest where they lie dozing, flutters over them, to show them how they must use their wings….”  Matthew Henry

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“Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them.  Are you not of more value than they?”  Matthew 6:26

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We are similar in a number of ways:

  • Parents care for their young: both may be involved, but not always.
  • As infants, we depend upon our parents to feed us, change us, place us into bed.
  • As children, we continue to depend upon our parents for many years, although we begin to spread our wings, gaining some feeling of independence.
  • One day, when we are old enough, and, hopefully, mature enough, we spread those wings and take flight.
  • …to name a few

Parents teach their young, guiding them to walk by holding their hands, eventually stepping out away from them so they begin to take steps toward the parent.

‘You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to Myself.  Exodus 19:4

God is our Father, teaching us.  He is a patient Father.  He waits as we take steps.  He reteaches, if necessary (usually so! at least for me!).  He draws us out to walk in His Way, to be obedient to His commandments.  He loves us and nurtures us.  He keeps His hand in ours.

And God said, Let us make man in Our image, after Our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth Genesis 1:26

I ponder the ways of these birds and my own existence.  You created me…ME!

For You formed my inward parts;
You knitted me together in my mother’s womb.  Psalm 139:13

Father God, You blessed me with wonderful earthly parents who cared for me tenderly and dearly.  They loved me.  They raised me up that I could fly.  And I have flown and hope I will continue to fly.  My earthly parents are with You now, yet their love is still with me.  Thank You for them, Father.  You care for me so much more than I can know…yet one day, I will know You, Your Holiness, Your Sovereignty, Your Love.  You are my God. 

“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.  Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”  Matthew 6:33-34

I seek Your Kingdom, Father.  Show me the way. 

But those who wait on the LORD
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.  Isaiah  40:31

I want to fly with You for the rest of my earthly life and then on to Heaven to be with You…one day. 

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I’LL FLY AWAY by Albert Brumley **

Some glad morning when this life is o’er,
I’ll fly away;
To a home on God’s celestial shore,
I’ll fly away.

CHORUS:
I’ll fly away, O glory,
I’ll fly away;
When I die, Hallelujah, by and by,
I’ll fly away.

beblacksig

 

 

“A Regal Couple” —  http://www.eagles.org/dceaglecam/about.html

Video:   American Eagle Foundation/DCEagleCam — http://www.slate.com/articles/video/video/2016/03/bald_eagle_chicks_hatched_at_national_arboretum_video.html

Laysan Albatross by Linda van den Heever:  https://twitter.com/LindavdHeever/status/738811736409681921/photo/1?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw

Red-Tailed Hawk feeding newborn by keysfishin:  https://www.flickr.com/photos/81381146@N06/26491567641/in/photostream/

Bald Eagles with two eaglets:  https://pbs.twimg.com/media/Ckhh94GWUAA2AxS.jpg

Bald Eagle with Freedom and Liberty: https://twitter.com/search?q=%23dceaglecam&src=tyah

Video of Liberty & Freedom dancing in the rain/© 2016 American Eagle Foundation, EAGLES.ORG”

Laysan Albatross chick practicing wing-flapping skills:  https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CkiOKYCVAAAsLbL.jpg

Red-Tailed Hawk taking flight by keysfishin:  https://www.flickr.com/photos/81381146@N06/26953158963/

Bald Eagle adult with juvenile:  https://www.bing.com/images/search?q=juvenile+bald+eagle+fishing+with+adult&view=detailv2&&id=B46BB7286E88F6C4170CC1682DC880085885587F&selectedIndex=1&ccid=NqGIBWck&simid=607997538543667549&thid=OIP.M36a188056724e13121ed5f3373687b56o0&ajaxhist=0

Baby Learning to Walk photo:  http://www.fellowship.ca/AWordFromSteve

Flying Bald Eaglehttps://www.bing.com/images/search?q=Free+Pictures+of+Bald+Eagles+In-Flight&view=detailv2&&id=371DEF5AFFC30C6C9055F494279CDFB0566974F0&selectedIndex=56&ccid=SSmBjioE&simid=608035965620391302&thid=OIP.M4929818e2a049a1f248cb977a990d061o0&ajaxhist=0

**  LYRICS “I’LL FLY AWAY” AS REPRINTED IN “ALBERT E. BRUMLEY’S OLDE CAMP MEETIN’ SONGS.” Camdenton, Missouri, 1971, p. 11;© 1932, renewed 1960 Albert E. Brumley and Sons.

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