Monday, June 30, 2014
The Dictionary defines greed as "a selfish and excessive desire to have more of something than is needed". The Bible puts it in the same sentence with wickedness, murder, and malicious behavior. My pastor in his sermon Sunday said it is a spirit. Obviously, it is not desirable to have; but I'm afraid it comes naturally to us; or, speaking of myself, to me. I'm like the little girl in a recent tv commercial for insurance; the one where the man in a suit asks kindergarteners questions. There is one where the little girl answers, "If I like it, I want more. I want more". I can relate to that!
I've been convicted this past year of being a greedy person. Last summer, I did a study of Jen Hatmaker's book, "The Seven Experiment". In it she addresses seven areas of her life where she has excess. I was motivated to clear out half of my closet and donate it to Goodwill. And I made a decision to buy no more clothes the rest of 2013. And I've tried using less paper towels.
But when 2014 came along, so did my desire to buy clothes I don't need. And I've gone back to using too many paper towels. But it doesn't stop there. I love to shop flea markets. I recently spent $90 on things for my house that weren't really needed. My house needs nothing more. Don't even get me started on food. We have a large vegetable garden and I try to eat whole foods. I love sugar. I'm addicted to it. The harder I try to give it up, the more I crave it. The more I crave it, the more I eat it. It's a vicious cycle.
Even the animals on our farm are greedy. The two big dogs won't share with each other or any of the animals. The largest pygmy goats won't share with the youngest (their own babies). We're all out of control. What to do? I'm going to start with prayer and extra time with Jesus. That's what I need most when I'm out of control. God has blessed me abundantly. I need to unclench my selfish fists and let go-to others who need it more. I don't know what to do about the pygmy goats.
"You say, "I am allowed to do anything"-but not everything is good for you. And even though "I am allowed to do anything", I must not become a slave to anything", 1 Corinthians 6:12.
Tuesday, June 17, 2014
My daughter and her husband lived here until Bella was four years old. I kept Bella while Carrie taught school and we became very close. It almost killed me when they moved and I hate it that I've missed seeing Kaya grow up. Carrie is really good about sending me pictures by text and on Facebook, so that I feel like I'm still a little part of their lives.
When they moved is when I learned some important truths:
*1-I CAN LIVE WITHOUT ANYTHING BUT JESUS. But I have to have Him and He is always with me.
*2-GOD IS SOVEREIGN. He always knows what is best for us and He wants the best for us.
My son-in-law had been without a job for a year when they moved so he could run his stepfather's handyman business. The business there has thrived; they are renting the best house they have ever had; and Carrie and the girls are thriving, too. They have lots of friends there and lots of activities to do.
It was a good move for them. God knew it would be. He planned it and has orchestrated all the events. I know I can trust Him with the things I hold most precious.
"You have been my hope, O Sovereign Lord. From my childhood I have trusted you", Psalm 71:5.
"I will praise your mighty deeds, O Sovereign Lord. I will tell everyone that you alone are just", Psalm 71:16.
Tuesday, June 3, 2014
The bigger lambs would go quickly to the feed trough and never leave room for Rosemary. She didn't grow as fast as they did. Then she got sick and we spent some time nursing her back to health. My husband said if she made it, that we could keep her as a pet and never sell her.
So we put her in the barnyard with our two massive Livestock Guardian Dogs, Samson and Delilah.
After a few days of chasing her around, the big dogs accepted her, and the three became fast friends.
The only problem was, after a while, Rosemary began acting like a dog. The dogs would chase the pygmy goats around the barnyard and Rosemary would join in on the chase, I said, "Rosemary, you're a sheep. Sheep don't chase other animals". Then she began putting her two front legs up on me to beg for animal crackers. (I know, but they all love animal crackers?!?) I said, "Rosemary, you're a sheep. Don't beg like dogs do".
. We had two older pygmy goats and then we bought two babies and put them in the barnyard because we couldn't keep them enclosed anywhere else. The baby pygmy goats began following Rosemary all over; they had made her their new mother. And she seemed to relish the attention. I said to my husband, "Rosemary can't decide if she's a dog or a goat". She became part of the "west pasture gang" for awhile. This gang of sheep and pygmy goats; who by then had added three members, baby pygmies, would parade down the fence line in the morning as far as they could and parade back to the barnyard fence in the evenings to sleep for the night. I said, "Rosemary, you're a sheep. Quit acting like a goat".
My husband said when we got our 12 new ewes, we would put Rosemary back with the sheep. They would be younger than her and maybe she would fit in with them. Last week, my husband picked up our new ewes and put them in the pasture. He put Rosemary in the pasture with them. She stood for 3 days at the barnyard gate staring at her beloved dogs and goats. I said, "I'm afraid we've ruined Rosemary from ever becoming a sheep"
But, like all good stories, this one has a happy ending. After a few days, Rosemary decided to be a sheep. In fact, she's the leader of the pack. Those smaller sheep follow her everywhere she goes. Because she's first in line, she gets the choicest grasses. She seems happy and peaceful Like Rosemary, we all need to find our place; a place where we belong and feel accepted. My place is at the feet of Jesus. There is no better place for me.
"I will never fail you, I will never abandon you", Hebrews 13:5..