Sunday, July 29, 2007

A Little Self-Discipline


The List of Reasons:

~When Father is teaching me new things, it sometimes takes a while for it to filter through to a place that I can speak about it. I have to digest the new understandings before I can explain them to anyone else. This is the place where I am finding myself about our recent time with the Wallers, and I can't yet tell about all that I learned.

~Even though we school year-round, we begin anew toward the end of summer each year. A fresh start with new books, new pencils, new schedules, and new disciplines for us all to walk in are always a part of the plan. It is that time now.

~I have many projects to get done before Mr. Visionary leaves for Israel. His trip has been rescheduled, and he will be leaving a month earlier than originally planned.The good news is that he will now be home to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles with our family. The bad news is, I have less time to get the list of projects done before he leaves.

~I have discovered that I am more of a slacker than I imagined myself to be. (gasp) Me, the woman who often wonders how others have TIME to be on the computer, has found herself completely caught up on her MOMYS digests for several weeks now. That is always a sign that I have been spending too much time at the keyboard. (grin)

~My friend Carla's talk of
being away from her computer for a season inspired me.

~I also use this season before the Fall Biblical holidays to take stock of all the relationships in my life, with friends and family, sure, but also, and especially...with Father. The month before the Feast of Trumpets has traditionally been a time of evaluating and repentance...and I have a lot of letters to write.

              All of this is to explain why I am feeling led to take a 30-day sabbatical/fast from the computer, among other things. I am entering a season that requires my complete attention and focus, so I am cutting out anything superfluous to my main goals in this season. Since Father brought this up with me about a week ago, I have been frantically getting my computer business done, cleaning out my Inbox completely, getting all the last school books ordered, buying presents for the several birthdays that are coming up in the next few weeks, and printing out the lessons from my online bible study.

              Although I have gone a month without posting before, I am telling you ahead of time...this time. Hopefully when I return I will be refreshed and ready to pour out some of what Father has been pouring into my heart, because one can't drink from a fire hydrant without it splashing on others...

              Especially when drinking from the water of life.

              Friday, July 20, 2007

              A Proclamation Regarding School Supplies

              THE PARTIES

              1. The Parties of the first part, Phil and Julie, are the happily married father and mother of seven homeschooled children whose principle roles include the training, nurturing, teaching, loving, instructing and managing the aforementioned children in and from the domicile shared by them, the children, four cats, four cows, two kittens, one guinea hen, Curious George and Grace the Doll.

              2. Parties of the Second Part, Grandma and Meemaw, are the maternal units of Phil and Julie respectively.

              BACKGROUND FACTS

              3. Both Parties of The Second Part have a history of excess purchases of "Sale" items, and transfer of said purchases to the Parties of the First Part.

              4. Such transfers of excess purchases have caused intense emotional distress to each of the Parties of the First Part due to the housing and upkeep of said items, including, but not limited to having to build an addition onto our domicile to house our food as all other available pantries were full of said excess purchase items.


              5. The Parties of the First Part concede that the Wal-mart sale flyer has been delivered to our domicile in a timely manner, and that it has been perused by each Party of the First Part.

              6. The parties of the First Part concede that they have heretofore allowed the transfer of ownership of 47,000 single subject spiral-bound notebooks in assorted colors, and the accompanying 700 glue sticks per annum by the Parties of the Second Part.

              7. The Parties of The First Part concede that single subject notebooks can be very handy around the house, and that ten cents each is an exceptional price.

              8. The Parties of The First Part concede that said notebooks come in assorted colors, including green - the favorite color of The Dreamer, and others which are very cute.

              9. The Parties of The First Part concede that it is an amusing recreation to buy new school supplies, and that blueberry scented erasers can be therapeutic in a first grade aromatherapy fashion.

              10. The Parties of The First Part concede that with due consideration to the vast quantity of children in our family, our educational endeavors employ multitudinous quantities of school supplies.


              11. Let the record show that although it is Back-To-School time, the Parties of the First Part do hereby request that no ownership of school supplies be transferred to us by the Parties of the Second Part.

              12. Whereas, even with seven children, it would take a month of Sundays, by which time Christ may have already returned, to use 47,000 single subject spiral bound notebooks and the accompanying 700 glue sticks, notwithstanding the 100 that are ingested by the sixth child of the Parties of the First Part, henceforth referred to as Doodle.

              13. Whereas, this non-transfer request is to be broadened to include protractors, compasses, erasers (with the exception of blueberry scented), filler paper (standard or college ruled), loose-leaf binders, crayons, colored pencils, plastic pencil cases in assorted colors to match each child's personality, backpacks, lunch boxes, stickers, markers, rulers, folders, colored paper, workbooks, flashcards, staplers, staple pullers, and various and sundry other staple-related paraphernalia, including but not limited to boxes of staple refills.

              14. Whereas, should the Parties of the Second Part be unable to control their desire to purchase during this Back-to School season, the Parties of the First Part would be open to the transfer of ownership of a new school bus to the Parties of the First Part.

              15. Whereas, the Parties of the First Part will not at this time be seeking compensatory damages for the psychiatric treatments, Twelve-Step programs or chiropractic care necessitated by the aforementioned intense emotional distress of Article 4.

              Signed, Sworn, Testified, Proclaimed and Affidavited Six Ways from Sunday,

              Phil and Julie, the Parties of the First Part

              Tuesday, July 17, 2007

              What’s The Point?

              Recently I posted about our plans involving our family's going to Israel, and as I suspected, my Inbox has been flooded, and I have been answering (and asking) many questions privately. Lynne mentioned in the comments, "I don’t understand why the people of Israel need outside help with their farming" and I'd like to answer ~ at least this one ~ publicly.

              The practical answer to this specific question is because they just need farming help. Israel already has over 25,000 seasonal workers coming into the country annually to help with the farming.They come mostly during the summer months, and the majority of these workers are Buddhists from Thailand. From a Christian perspective, replacing those paid seasonal workers with seasonal workers who volunteer out of love, is a tremendous opportunity to minister to the Israeli people. It is the same principle for most foreign missions ~ we exhibit the Savior's love through our willing service, and thereby earn an opportunity to speak truth into their lives. Farming has traditionally been one of the most humble jobs available. Our serving in this capacity is an attempt to undo some of the arrogancy of (some) Christians to force the Gospel down their throats.

              The scenario above is enough to explain why 'someone' would choose these farmers as a people to serve. It is as valid a need as many others worldwide. There is simply no shortage of places and opportunities to serve Father and bring the message of salvation that will allow the blind to see and sinners to come to repentance. The whole world needs Jesus, and across the street is as good a place as why Israel?

              There is a veil over the eyes of the Jews now, that Yahweh has placed there, that will keep them from seeing the truth of who their Messiah really is. When in His good pleasure, He desires to remove that veil, we desire to be there, already in relationship with the Jewish people, in order to make the introduction. House of your Savior...Yeshua HaMashiach.

              Just as here in the United States, the family situation in Israel is also very unstable. Even in the Orthodox communities, the families have Momma and Daddy both working away from home, the children raised by others, and little time for family. Add to that their laissez-faire attitude about discipline and training of the children, and it is a recipe for disaster. Israelis have the belief that, "Life is so hard here already, we should let the children have as much freedom as possible". We ought to all know what kind of chaos that creates in a family. These are a people who need healthy families to minister to them ~ sometimes by nothing more than living life in front of them.

              But there's more...

              Understanding that the Old 'Testament' contains shadows and types of the New, allow me to begin by recounting some details of a story in the Scriptures that many of us have heard before. If you are not familiar with the story of Ruth, or wish to refresh your memory, you may read it here (use arrows to read entire book of Ruth).
              Please understand that Ruth is a picture of the Gentile church, and she senses the significance of cleaving to Naomi and Naomi's God. Just as the Gentile woman who asked Jesus if she could glean crumbs from Him, Ruth gleans from Boaz. He is a kinsman redeemer, the one who could redeem his kinsman from slavery, just as Jesus redeems us from the slavery of sin. Don Schwarz, in Identity Crisis, said, "It is the testimony of Ruth's love for Naomi and not her words that got the attention of Boaz. It is our actions of love toward the Jewish people and not our words that will get the attention of Jesus Christ our Kinsman Redeemer."

              Father's word will not return void, and He is faithful who promised. We see Ruth being blessed by Father's Word in the Torah ~ being allowed to glean, and being filled (literally) by the grace of her kinsman redeemer ~ Boaz allowing grain to drop for her. Father promised that we will be blessed by our blessing Israel, and that is certainly what happened to Ruth, as she was given a husband and family. Just like Naomi did, Israel will take notice when Yahweh blesses us. We believe that Father has given us a command to make them jealous in order to bring salvation full circle, from the Jews to us, then from us back to the Jews.

              We believe that being a Ruth to Naomi is a humble act of obedient trust that puts feet to our faith in our Messiah, Jesus. What better way to know Him better and love Him more?

              Sunday, July 15, 2007

              Why I’ve Been Scarce

              I've been busy for a while, and haven't posted, but I do have a good excuse. We were getting ready for a yard sale, then preparing for the Wallers' coming to our house ~ cooking ahead, moving furniture, etc. After they left, we followed them to another town and stayed in their bus for a few more days.
              The whirlwind is beginning to settle ~ finally. Although I expect that it will only begin again after we process all that we learned and heard this week. We spent five days with the Wallers, and haven't had time to digest for ourselves, much less share with each other, all that has transpired in our hearts. I'm sure that I'll be sharing some of this soon.

              I'll leave you with a few pictures while we go through debriefing here.
              Waller Visit 7.11.2007 001

              The children read books...

              Waller Visit 7.11.2007 050

              Even Mr. Visionary and I played ~

              and almost saw Mom's lunch a second time due to a certain person spinning the swing (grin)...

              Waller Visit 7.11.2007 020

              The boys built a new fort...

              Waller Visit 7.11.2007 009

              And we ate..and ate...and ate...

              I'll be back! I really have so much to share!