My beautiful sisters!
Whew, I tell you what, with me it is either feast or famine! :-)
I wanted to sweep up a few details, a few funnies, ask for a few prayers. Generally knot up the loose ends from this past couple of weeks....
First of all, prayers: please pray for our family. My mom, dad, aunts, cousins, uncles who are dealing with the passing of my grandmother. I think everyone is healing, is finding peace, but I am not sure. Please pray for them. Please pray that this is a situation that brings together, not tears apart, as deaths in the family can either make a family stronger or tear them apart.
And please thank the Lord for me and with me that my grandmother's passing was so peaceful. I really cannot tell you what a blessing it was!
Please pray for SHAW's sister as she is very sick and needs healing AND encouragement.
Please continue to pray for that veteran of a few posts ago.
Please pray for the Palin's, as they deal with the politics and the personal challenges they face.
Please pray for our brothers and sisters in the path of the hurricanes--wow they are lining up one by one aren't they? My dear, wonderful, beautiful cousin is working with evacuee children...Please pray for her, as she does not know how wonderful and beautiful she is, but she has ALWAYS had the most wonderful spirit. I miss her terribly.
Please pray for the safety of the hunters as our hunting season has opened in earnest and many of us up here are relying on hunting to provide food for our family. Alaska is very expensive to live, and the price of gas is NOT falling here, neither is the price of fuel oil. So hunting food instead of buying it is such a wonderful provision from the Lord. Please pray that all those who need the food can be successful, and pray that everyone is kept safe.
There are so many people to pray for! The unborn, the abused, the sorrowed, the lost. Please understand that our prayers ARE necessary and ARE doing something. Remember that our battle is NOT AT ALL against flesh and blood but against rulers and principalities in the heavenly realms. Please read Ephesians 6:10-20 and ponder it in your heart, especially when we tend to hurry our prayers or think they are not effective.
Ephesians 6 (Young's Literal Translation, one of my favorites, taken from Crosswalk.com)
6:10 As to the rest, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might;
6:11 put on the whole armour of God, for your being able to stand against the wiles of the devil,
6:12 because we have not the wrestling with blood and flesh, but with the principalities, with the authorities, with the world-rulers of the darkness of this age, with the spiritual things of the evil in the heavenly places;
6:13 because of this take ye up the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to resist in the day of the evil, and all things having done -- to stand.
6:14 Stand, therefore, having your loins girt about in truth, and having put on the breastplate of the righteousness,
6:15 and having the feet shod in the preparation of the good-news of the peace;
6:16 above all, having taken up the shield of the faith, in which ye shall be able all the fiery darts of the evil one to quench,
6:17 and the helmet of the salvation receive, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the saying of God,
6:18 through all prayer and supplication praying at all times in the Spirit, and in regard to this same, watching in all perseverance and supplication for all the saints --
6:19 and in behalf of me, that to me may be given a word in the opening of my mouth, in freedom, to make known the secret of the good news,
6:20 for which I am an ambassador in a chain, that in it I may speak freely -- as it behoveth me to speak.
If this translation is difficult (I have seen it said that YLT is good in hebrew, but light on English, as this translation was actually striving to be VERY literal). It is important that we know that we are to pray, that our strength comes from the Lord and His might, and that the Spirit knows what we need to pray for when we do not. (We should do a study on prayer sometime. I will admit that while I do pray and often, I have not actually thought much about it. Hmmm....)
Ok, more sweepings.....
A couple of funny things....for some reason, when I was very upset about my grandmother, everyone tried to find things for me to do! Precious kept trying to come up with ideas, such as games and the like, and TWS suggested that I could redecorate the bedroom while he was gone (chuckle).
Now, I know what they were trying to do, and I DEEPLY appreciate it! They know that I am a project person and were trying to give me things to do to keep me occupied. It just kinda cracks me up :-).
I tell you what I DID do....
I played bubble shooter.
Yep, that is pretty much it! Ok, not really, I did more than that, but bubble shooter was SUCH a blessing to me (thank you Kayla!!! You have no idea how much it helped!). It is one of those games you have to be VERY careful with because it is a colossal time waster. No, seriously. DREADFUL!
BUT what it also was to me was something that required JUST enough of my brain so that I could not spin up into even more of an emotional mess. I could think and even pray, but I could not DWELL and be MOROSE. Yesterday I kept a game of bubble shooter open and an MSWORD document page open. I would shoot bubbles, and write to the Lord. Shoot more bubbles, write more to the Lord. Bubble shooting kept my emotions more at bay, because it was distracting BUT it was not so engrossing that I could not ponder things and pray. It was SUCH a blessing! I played until I could literally barely see from the eye strain.
I have spent a ton of time talking to my brother and sister in law. I have chatted with my cousin and my father and my mom. I have started a painting (see, I DID need a project!). I shot my bow. Precious Heart and I went to town and got conditioner and went to the candy store and to chilis for lunch. I watched the weather channel, preseason football, and live streaming video from a tv station in New Orleans for Gustav (thank the Lord that He blew the strength out of that one! I was praying!). I almost finished sewing a dress for Precious and cut out some more.
I think I am most grateful, and feel good that, I spent the first few days after my grandmother passed just doing nothing. I know that it worried people around me GREATLY, but I just needed a couple of days of no responsibilities, of no pressures, very little activity. Oh I could have kept that going and kept mourning and sorrowful for longer, but I was afraid that I would sink into a depression that way. I liked to think of it sort of like three days of darkness when Jesus died, then a new day. For some reason, three days of stillness, sorrow and full up mourning seems appropriate, then a gradual return to life. At least for me, at least in this situation. I still miss my grandmother, and I still get sad. But thank the Lord that I am not eaten up with her passing, but that the Lord put me back on my feet, gradually, and with me leaning on His arm. Each day my legs are getting stronger, and I am returning back to duties and responsibilities. I could almost cry as I see how He is being patient with me, giving me enough time to heal, but also gently urging me to get back in the game. He sat by my spiritual bedside for many days, being faithful (as always!) and kind, teaching me and comforting me. Now His strong arm is around my shoulder. He is actually too kind for me to even comprehend....I know that there is more, but my brain cannot actually wrap my head around it....like a math puzzle I just cannot understand. But I am thankful and eager that one day I will know as I am fully known!
Oh I did learn another thing--I keep trying to get grace on my strength not His. Oh my sisters, I will NEVER learn this lesson!!! Ok, I will learn it, but MAN I am hard headed!!! No wonder He brought me to the edge of the frontier--I am as distractable as a ping pong ball on drugs. :-)
Well I probably need to stop writing now...I have to start printing out records for the children's schooling. We school year round....not because of any reason but that I tend to want to take days off here and there, and I do not want us to fall behind. I want to be able to take a week for hunting, or a day because I would rather bake cinnamon rolls and read Trixie Belden mysteries :-).
I love you my beautiful sisters. Please take care of yourselves and your families and be heartened and cheered in the Lord. He is always faithful, we just sometimes need to pray for eyes to see His faithfulness :-).