Bells and whistles abound

wood 2

I have so many bells and whistles on this computer, I could take a 5-credit hour class just to learn it all, if I even have the mental capacity for such an undertaking.  So I have done the next best thing via this wonderful search engine which has now become a verb in our vernacular: I just “google it”!  Lo and behold, up comes YouTube tutorials, text steps one through ten, and various others educational DYI for techno-dummies (like me).  It takes a little wading through, as in when I bump into a term I don’t understand, at which point I have to back up further by looking that one up (read: “google it”), and then go back to where I was. 

It is laborious.  I did this to learn several Continue reading “Bells and whistles abound”

Cucumbers–more than salad.

cukes 2I’m watching with interest as my cucumber plant is flourishing, winding up the metal fencing and sending out little shoots to hold it up.  I’m amazed at the engineering and forethought of this design—some plants need a full support “cage” (like tomatoes), but this little guy has its own tentacles that reach out, find, and attach the vine to the fence, literally pulling whole plant up into the sunlight.  These also serve to anchor and support the plant when the heavy cucumbers mature. 


Why can’t I be that smart?

God has created us to be in family, in Continue reading “Cucumbers–more than salad.”

A, B, C, or all of the above.

neuschwanstein-castle-467116_1280I’ve had a history of being a black/white, good/bad, either/or kind of person.  Give me a true/false or multiple choice test, and I’m okay.  But asking me to pull an answer out of my gray matter without any prompts is a bit more of a challenge. 

Life, however, tends not to extend itself to us in either/or definitions.  And humans, being the limited thinkers we are, tend not to appreciate that.  Dare that we would think there may be options of which we are unaware!!

Here’s just one example: either (A) God is not all-powerful to end the world’s suffering, or (B) He is not all-loving as He says He is.

Joshua, of Jericho fame, ran into that intellectual wall (pardon the pun).

When Joshua was near the town of Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with sword in hand. Joshua went up to him and demanded, “Are you friend or foe?”

“ Neither one,” he replied. “I am the commander of the LORD’s army.”

Now, here was something Joshua hadn’t even considered, and I can only imagine it gave him pause (if not a heart attack, as I hear angels can be pretty scary…)

The point is not to try answering all the questions, because when one is attended to, invariably another will surface.  Satan has many of them; he’s been at this for years.  Not that God doesn’t invite our questions and concerns, but there comes a point in every disciple’s life when the unanswered questions must give way to a trusting relationship with the God whom we can “know sufficiently but not exhaustively.” 

In other words, God is not defined by our multiple choice answers.  He defines Himself to us.

Joshua 5:1, 14  Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Not about me?


I’m gifted.  At least, that’s what my folks were told back when I was in 5th grade.  So they put me in different school for a couple of years, which was really nice of them, since it meant mom had to carpool a few of us “gifted” kids to and fro.  (Never mind that fact that my older brother, who was not recognized as “gifted”, went on to be the Purdue engineer, celebrated in his field as international keynote and author, widely traveled, as well as musician/artist on the side.  Yeah, don’t overestimate manmade “tests” for gifted-ness….just saying.)

Right, so here I am, gifted.  Of course, a gift is something that is innately given, something for which the receiver has no claim to credit, nothing they can legitimately boast about, because it’s, well…a gift.

Which, clearly, can come in all forms, some of which are recognized and valued, some of which are undisclosed and certainly undervalued.  And, just as obviously (at least, to me, maybe that’s part of my “gifted-ness”), what Continue reading “Not about me?”

The Kraken (#6)

(Pssst…In case you missed the first part, you can start from HERE.)

From: and copied from Alejandro Quijano pintrest (Kinda scary, right?) 

The Kraken

By Robert L. Jones III (check it out at Pneumythology)

VI. The Apprenticeship

The night was spent with further conversation, food, and sleep.

When morning came, the boy set out with promises to keep.

His friend called out a proverb, enigmatic in its way,

“Expected change will surely come when night turns into day,


“And though you think this tragedy as bad as it can get,

If you will hearken to me, you will come by comfort yet

To know the situation isn’t what it seems to be.

The Kraken can obscure, but never feed on, purity.”


As Galen walked back toward his home along the stony beach,

Though none appeared, he thought he heard a flock of eagles screech

A cry unbound by space and time, its timbre sharp and shrill,

Much like a trumpet’s battle call when sounded from a hill.


He turned to face the rising land, his back against the tide.

His winding path led through the hills and to his father’s side.

The good man chuckled at the news delivered by his son

That, of the trades he might have tried, he’d settled on this one.


Not knowing whether such a choice was by the boy’s device,

He said, “We’ll both give this a try, but start with this advice.

Though I don’t know the final goal on which your hopes are set,

Be durable and sure of hand. You’ll make a blacksmith yet.”


Comparing to his father’s build, his own was rather small,

But, owing to inheritance, he’d grow both broad and tall.

For seven years, he labored hard to learn his father’s trade,

And, with the passing of each one, the prophet’s words would fade.


By rambling thoughts of gallantry was Galen much amused.

About the daily sweat and toil he seemed much less enthused.

One day, while working at the forge, his father’s arms went slack.

He turned and spoke these solemn words while straightening his back,


“My son, you’ve grown and served me well. Regardless of your plan,

The time has come to make your way. Go forth. You are a man.”

He paid his wages, hugged his neck, but neither of them knew

That, once the son was gone, the father’s life would soon be through.


The end would come while Galen was constrained upon a ship,

Commissioned by mistaken choice, a nearly fatal slip.

With freedom gained and body strong, it’s typical that he

Forgot the prophet’s sayings of what he was meant to be.


A little truth can lead astray such youthful confidence.

He still retained his childish zeal but wanted common sense.

His pockets full of silver coins, away from home he turned,

From father’s trade and prophet’s way, from skills and lessons learned.


Mud Pies, and other delicacies—

garden lastMy two-year-old granddaughter likes to play in the dirt.  (Of course, so does her grandmother, but I rationalize my behavior by presumptuously calling it “gardening”.)

As a doting grandma, I post this photo with her mother’s permission:


Another recently shared video showed her working in the dirt, and when asked what she was doing, she replied, “I’m making honey!”

Now, THAT would be a bit of a creative miracle.  But then, come to think of it, our original form likewise came from the dirt.

Out of the mouths of babes…..

I read another’s comment that perhaps Continue reading “Mud Pies, and other delicacies—”

“Birth”day takes on new meaning when you’re the one birthing

IMG_20150103_172451138To begin with, I haven’t given birth to a baby for over thirty years.  That, in itself, is worthy of thanksgiving.  (And beyond that, if you are a man somewhat faint-of-heart, you might consider going to the next post on your reader…)

Not that I would trade any of it—that miracle of another human being growing within me and then passing through me into the world, and, as my husband’s mother mused when our first was born, someone who is “50% mom, 50% dad, and 100% herself”, well, that’s just unspeakably cool. 

Back in the early ‘80s, they were going with these new things called “birthing rooms”: comfortable bed in a wallpapered, home-like atmosphere, etc.  I got to use one when our first made her global debut.  For all the “coaching” classes we had, poor Bob was ultimately relegated to silence and the important task of providing me with ice chips. 

For our second, however, the birthing room was not available, and so I was taken into the old standard: an operating room atmosphere with Continue reading ““Birth”day takes on new meaning when you’re the one birthing”

The demonstrative introvert…(huh?)

neuschwanstein-castle-467116_1280I’ve decided I’m a “demonstrative introvert”.  I have no problem being up in front of people, (unless it’s a firing squad, that could be a problem), but I re-fuel myself in solitude.  My daughter says that I’m too loud when I enter a room (I’ve gotten better with practice), but my favorite time of day is the cool quiet of the morning.  I tend toward, as Mark Twain quipped, “explosions of opinion”, I laugh out loud, and I raise my hands both at football games and church, but I’m revived in quiet contemplation here at the keyboard.

So I guess the sharing of myself is a bit ambiguous.  Yet God expects it, and has created me (and all of His children) to do exactly that.  And the best place to start is at the beginning, which is another reason why I like the account of the “man born blind”—

After Jesus heals him, this poor guy is confronted Continue reading “The demonstrative introvert…(huh?)”

The Kraken (#5)

(Pssst…In case you missed the first part, you can start from HERE.)

From: and copied from Alejandro Quijano pintrest (Kinda scary, right?)

The Kraken

By Robert L. Jones III (check it out at Pneumythology)

V.  The Prophet’s Home

Far up the coast, a cottage stood, white-walled beneath the sun,

And though the boy did not know why, he broke into a run.

Some hidden force had drawn him forth and drew him faster still.

He moved by sense of atmosphere as children often will.


He slowed his pace once he approached that house along the shore,

Stopped, then, proceeding cautiously, peered through the open door.

This place was curious, he thought, to see the sum of it,

A dwelling marked by common things, but some things didn’t fit.


A garden uphill from the surf provided meager fare,

And flocks of sea gulls combed the rocks and drifted in the air.

The domicile had hearth and bed but neither trough nor stall,

Nor any horse for miles around, yet saddles on the wall.


Beside the hearth, an old man sat, his eyes reflecting flame,

And since the boy had stared awhile, looked up and did the same.

A studied look was on his brow. In thought, he stroked his beard.

At length, when he addressed his guest, his countenance was cheered.


“Please state your name. Your face is strange. Your look I think I know.”

“My name is Galen,” he replied. “I know not where to go

Or what to do. Since days ago, my heart with grief is torn,

An empty ache within my chest, not felt since I was born.


“My eyes still redden with the tears, distraught by what they saw.”

He next relayed the incident in trembling and in awe.

The old man listened carefully, then once the lad was through,

He nodded contemplatively and smiled as if he knew.


“I lead a life of solitude. I wait on man and God,

Complaining not and wanting not, nor should I find it odd

That, of the great men of the earth, a lad should come to me.

Come in. Find solace by my fire, and learn the prophecy.


“This curse from undersea proves such a complicated test.

A simple and courageous mind will learn to solve it best.

With love denied, yet naught to lose, and fierceness in his heart,

A boy will grow into a man to learn the sacred art.


“All tangled problems must trace back through branches to their source.

Their tentacles join but one head. There concentrate your force.

Then morbid love revives again beneath the warming sun.

Make strong your arms, and count the cost to be the chosen one.


“Tomorrow, homeward make your way. Obey your father’s will.

Despise no task. Explore each path that finds your feet until

You come to me by his own leave with arms and pockets full

That I might try the character abiding in your skull.”