Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Happy things from this past week

I love rain and we finally received some! I love the dark filled, heavy rain on a summer's day!
I also like how the rain is just "a bouncin" off of the carport roof!
I made a little sunny spot for eating dinner with my hubby (instead of eating at the table that sits 10-12!)
This lizard loves this particular window--he is too cute.

My wildflowers have been so colorful!!

These have been some of my happy little blessings this week ;-)

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

cold mountain hymn

I like this hymn---and this old way of singing. Youtube has samples of this kind of singing on their site too.

Here are the words:

Farewell, vain world! I'm going home!
My savior smiles and bids me come,
And I don't care to stay here long!
Sweet angels beckon me away,
To sing God's praise in endless day,
And I don't care to stay here long!

Right up yonder, Christians, away up yonder,
O, yes my Lord, for I don't care to stay here long.

I'm glad that I am born to die,
From grief and woe my soul shall fly,
And I don't care to stay here long!
Bright angels shall convey me home,
Away to New Jerusalem,
And I don't care to stay here long!

Right up yonder, Christians, away up yonder,
O, yes my Lord, for I don't care to stay here long.

Right up yonder, Christians, away up yonder,
O, yes my Lord, for I don't care to stay here long.

[Thanks to for lyrics]

Sunday, July 19, 2009

One of man's deepest desires

There was an interview with Vanier who works with the disabled ---pysically, mentally, etc. He tells some of the things he has learned......I like this section which I give below. One of the greatest things that men desire is to be loved. (I don't agree with a lot of Vanier's theology, but I like some of the insights he has. He is the founder of L'Arche:

Mr. Vanier: Yes, I come back to the reality of pleasure and to the reality of what is my deepest desire and what is your deepest desire. And what — and somewhere, the deepest desire for us all is to be appreciated, to be loved, to be seen as somebody of value. But not just seen — and Aristotle makes a difference between being admired and being loved. When you admire people, you put them on pedestals. When you love people, you want to be together. So really, the first meeting I had with people with disabilities, what touched me was their cry for relationship. Some of them had been in a psychiatric hospital. Others — all of them had lived pain and the pain of rejection. One of the words of Jesus to the, to Peter —and you find this at the end of the gospel of Saint John — "Do you love me?"

Ms. Tippett: "Do you love me?"

Mr. Vanier: So, thus, the cry of God saying, "Do you love me?" and the cry of people who have been wounded, put aside, who have lost trust in themselves, they've been considered as mad and all the rest. And their cry is, "Do you love me?" And it's these two cries that come together. ................

Mr. Vanier: We are very fragile in front of the future. Accidents and sicknesses is the reality. We are born in extreme weakness and our life will end in extreme weakness. So this, people don't want to hold on to that. They want to prove something. They want security. They want to have big bank accounts and all that sort of stuff. But then also, a whole lots of fear is within us.

Ms. Tippett: Yes.

Mr. Vanier: We are a frightened people. And, of course, the big question is, why are we so frightened of people with disabilities? Like a woman who said to me just recently, asked me where I — what I was doing. And I said that I had the privilege of living with people with disabilities. And she said, 'Oh, but I could never work with people.' And I said, 'Why not?' And she said, 'Well, I am frightened of them.' It touches very — and I believe we're in front of a mystery of the human reality and people who are very deeply disfigured in their face, in their body. And so — and it's the fault of nobody. It's a reality that is there. And maybe we can work things out and discover what gene it is and so on. But the history of humanity is a history of people being born extremely fragile because sickness and death is part of our — of our reality.

Ms. Tippett: You told a story, when I heard you speak at St. John's University years ago, about very happy members of your community. Do you remember that story?

Mr. Vanier: Oh, yes, yes. Yes, I was sitting and there was a man who was a bit glum like a lot of people, a bit glum. And but, and anyway, there was a knock on the door. And before I could say "Come in," Jean Claude walked in and Jean Claude technically would be Down syndrome. And Jean Claude shook my hand and laughed, and shook the hand of the other fellow and laughed, and went out laughing. And the man that had been in my office looked at me and said, 'Isn't it sad, children like that?' And I mean, he, what was sad was that he was totally blind. He didn't see that Jean Claude was happy.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Walking with the suffering CHANGES US

NPR had an interesting interview with the geophysicist and spiritual thinker Xavier Le Pichon. I liked some things he said about suffering/community/and humanity. (the whole interview is here I am not saying I agree with all of what he says, but some of the things I found helpful.

Le Pichon " first became interested in geology in six months he spent as a child in a concentration camp in French Indochina, modern-day Vietnam. He later helped create the field of plate tectonics and pioneered exploration of plate boundaries in the ocean depths.

He and his wife raised their family in intentional spiritual communities centered around people with mental disabilities"

Mr. Le Pichon: You have this kind of big awakenings when the big catastrophe happens, either a collective one like a war or major accident, but it can be also a tragedy inside the family, not just outside. And they may react in a way that you cannot predict. Sometimes it's very bad. Sometimes it opens them up. So it's something difficult but my experience is that once you enter into this way of, I would call it companionship, you know, walking with the suffering person that has come into your life and that you have not rejected, then your heart progressively gets educated by them. You know, they teach you a new way of being.

Ms. Tippett: Right. Your heart gets educated. I like that.

Mr. Le Pichon: Yes. We have to be educated by the other. Our heart cannot be educated by itself. I mean, my heart cannot be educated by myself.

Mr. Le Pichon: It can only come out of a relationship with others. And if we accept to be educated by the others, to let the other explain to us what happens to them, how they feel, which is completely different from what we feel, and to let yourself immerse into their world so that they can get into our world, then you begin to share something which is very deep. You will never be the person in front of you, but you will have created what we call communion, the capacity to share at a very deep level. And I feel that that is the essence of life and that's what Jesus came to teach us. Learn how to enter into communion with your neighbors, the way he called it, neighbors. And then you will discover something completely new.

by Xavier Le Pichon (THE WHOLE THING IS HERE--

What my mother and father experienced together during her long and painful illness helps us to understand a little better the nature of this mysterious transformation of relationships which comes when we welcome handicap, suffering and illness. If this welcome is made with dignity and love, the person we welcome becomes the one who leads us into a new deepening of our true humanity. That person changes us deeply as she also changes the nature of the community around them. My mother who had played such an important role during her active life to form the bonds that unified our family had at the end of her painful life an even greater influence in maintaining our unity and in deepening the heart of my father while she appeared to be utterly powerless. One can say that she radiated much more love than what she had received. She had revealed to those who had welcomed her with love a new depth of their humanity. They now better understood that they had a heart and could only find happiness in love

Friday, July 10, 2009

Enjoying my flowers

These roses above have been delightful. They grow long lanky branches and are wrapping around some of our other bushes. They are a carpet rose and I love the way they continue to put out blooms----these have replaced our hard to care rose bushes that I liked, but these do not require much care!
I love the wild flowers and have so enjoyed the extra ones we planted this year!!

The impatiens have done well in these containers so we hope to plant them next year as well!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

When facing hard situations

Helpful advice that I jotted down and now I can't remember from whom---either Paul Tripp or Paul Miller

when going through hard times remember:

1. I am betrothed to Christ
2. He is preparing me for a wedding
3. I need faithfulness to Christ
4. Don't be short-sighted or self-absorbed
5. God's goal is not necessarily to change the situation , but to change me. Ask:
What do I need to learn?
What is my spiritual myopia?
What do I need to change?

Monday, July 6, 2009

How to stop the itching of a mosquito bite

Well--I can not believe this worked, but it did. I will have to try it some more in the future to see if it always works. I previously used benedryl anti-itch cream for the mosquito bites,but it wasn't working very well. My daughter had told me about using deodorant on the bites. Soooo since I have a few bites that have been extremely itchy and the anti-itch cream was not faring to well, I tried some SECRET deodorant and Wow--it worked immediately. I will have to see if this continues to work.