Wednesday, December 05, 2012
I joined the adult choir at the school where I work, and our concert is scheduled for Dec. 11th. We're to wear black, red, white, or any combination thereof...but NO PANTS. I thought, great, I know I have a black skirt. But when I went looking for it (I usually wear pants to school, especiallywhen the colder weather sets in) I couldn't find it. I knew I had bought a new one and left it in Peru on purpose, building up a wardrobe in Pucallpa so I would have to pack less personal stuff and could bring more blessings to distribute during mission trips. But I had another one, one with a wee little hole in it, full enough that the hole was not noticeable, and this is the one I expected to find. But I didn't. Drat. Have a white one, but don't ask me where the half-slip is. (I bought the white one to wear for if Levi and I get married up HERE, since I left the wedding DRESS in Pucallpa to, having anticipated being able to marry there THIS year - then the paperwork fiasco...) So...But I hate going to malls...and there are all these protests over "Wally World"...so I decided to go to one of my favorite stores, Goodwill, which has the added advantage of being a "good cause." And I found a nice long black skirt, soft, comfy - I could zip it up! And a very nice BRIGHT holiday red top. My tummy is still baggy, but my daughter assured me that if I also wear my long white sweater vest, it'll help to hide the paunchiness.
She also found my yearly Christmasy shirt, blue with a KITTY, and some little stuffed animals for my grandkids' stockings, notably another MANATEE. My DGS had begun to take an interest in sea creatures, and a couple years ago I found a cute little blue-eyed manatee at one of the dollar stores, which he LOVES (and favored while i was away in Peru this summer, missing me). Abi later found another one, to his delight - and now this. And they're all slightly different, but small and soft.
And to top it off we got my daughter and granddaughter each a Christmasy shirt too. Oh, and earrings for Abi. Total? Forty five and some change. She'd paid me back 20, and I had 25 from a sale 0f a ceramic dog order - Ta-da! Love it.
Tuesday, December 04, 2012
I usually read more than one chapter at a time, but this one made me pause and think. God asked - no, TOLD Jonah to do something, and he purposefully disobeyed, heading in the opposite direction. His disobedience not only brought consequences to himself, but to innocent bystanders, his shipmates, who faced the possibility of shipwreck and drowning.
In his favor, he DID confess to them that he was the reason the storm had risen up. But he still preferred himself to be thrown overboard and drowned rather than obey God.
But God had other plans.
And recall how Jesus said that Jonah was a sign - the three days and three nights in the belly of the fish.
Jonah was there because of his own sin and disobedience. Jesus was in the belly of the earth for OUR sin and disobedience.
But it made me think how our actions affect not only ourselves, but those around us. Sometimes we argue that we're not hurting anyone else, but it just ain't so. We are connected. Even in the matter of overeating - if I put on so much weight that I can't perform my normal activities - someone has to take up the slack. And if it affects my health - someone pays for it.
"If one member suffers, all the members suffer with it" (I Cor. 12:26) This is true in the sense of the body, and the Body of Christ; but also in a much broader sense. We need to rise up out of our self-centered selfishness. We need to be more like Christ.
Monday, December 03, 2012
I was reading in Obadiah today - just a one-chapter book. Verse 15 says, "The day of the Lord is near for all nations. As you have done, it will be done to you; your deeds will return upon your own head."
It brings to mind other related scriptures:
2 Cor 9:6 Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.
Gal. 6:7 Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.
8 Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction;
9a whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. This principal can be found in nature.
And since this is my SPARK blog, let's apply it to a healthy lifestyle. If we continue to make good, healthy choices, we will reap the fruit of a healthier "me." I choose LESS junk, MORE exercise, BETTER foods.
Applied to life in general...There are "haters" in the world...complainers...I can choose to listen to them - be as soil to take in what they are "sowing" and in me they will have a harvest of the same. Or I can let it go, not receive their "seed", and continue to plant in my own life that which I know is good - seed from the fruits of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22,23) - I'll see that multiplied in my life. If I scatter this "seed" into others' lives, in my particular sphere of influence, I will also see fruit in those in whom I "sow". For instance: I have built good relationships with troublesome students (even been "friended" by some on Facebook!)
It's important to be a positive influence in any situation.
So...Galatians 6:9b - Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
Sunday, December 02, 2012
Mornings are my best time to work on my ceramics. So of course my work days are out of the question. Then Saturday I was also out and about. However, I got another order - wanted in time for Christmas of course. I usually tell people who ask for special orders to try to let me know by Thanksgiving - which is when I try to MAKE the pieces, and then try to get them painted up. Well, I had everyone else's orders MADE. So I decided to make this one dog last night, and quick-dry it in the oven so I could fire it with the other things. Then this morning after coloring my hair (another paint job, HA!) and doing other stuff, I sat myself down to work on the special orders, as well as some stock pieces, just in case there was room in the kiln. I ended up staying home from church, something I don't like to do, but I had to get these things done. I am grateful for being able to listen to sermons online!
It's sedentary work. So I used the online timer every 30-35 minutes to make sure I got up and moved around. That and drinking cups of water, till I felt cold then switched over to hot tea (no sugar). Made sure I went upstairs to the bathroom!
So, the special orders are in the kiln. Now I can catch up on my sparking.
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