Monday, February 28, 2011

A Valentine Lunch Tea

 Fidget and I had a lovely little lunch with ladies a couple weeks agoIt started as a valentine party, but that was just an excuse to get together. I really wanted to get to know folks better and fellowship with them. We had a great time and the kids played outside all afternoon on what turned out to be a lovely warm day. I took some pictures as my baking progressed. Above are some of the goodies: valentine sugar cookies, oatmeal scotchies that we later made into ice cream sandwiches for our guests, checkerboard cookies...
 mini ham and cheese frittatas,
 spinach and cheese pinwheels,
 mocha madeleines (before the scrumptious espresso glaze),
and scones. The spoon is there for the lemon curd, which took a couple of tries before I got it right. But it was worth the trouble. I've already made it again. Now we're planning another lunch with friends from Bible study and their kids. It's so nice to see mild weather returning. We're ready to shed our winter wear and feel the sun again. 
Of the ladies who came to the last lunch, the overwhelming feedback I got was what a welcome break it was from real life's demands. Which is probably why I am planning another lunch so soon. Any bit of encouragement, and I am off and running. I am lucky I get to have people over, and that life with the Pres and Fidget allows for quiet times enjoying the blessings of home.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Musings from a Wandering Sheep

God is leading me. Where, I don’t know. You’d think I’d be better at knowing His voice, after 19 years of being a Christian. “My sheep,” Jesus said in John 10:27, “listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.” I am listening. But the more I glimpse what I think he’s leading me to, and the more excited I get, the more I tend to discount His voice.  Yet, I am praying for Him to lead, to show me. So why do I question it? I am purposing to follow Him, but am I just a wandering sheep?

It feels presumptuous to say God is leading me to this or that. To know, really know. There have been times, not too distantly, that I have felt sure God was leading me, and I got to a dead end. I was stunned. Heartbroken. I questioned myself. Did I mis-hear Him? A close Christian friend pointed out that a dead end does not mean God did not lead me, and that He has purpose in everything He leads us to. I wonder if as He watches me, He wants me to go forward more boldly. I can tend to be impetuous though, so especially when it is an important decision I try to be deliberate. I long to have the faith to rush forward like Peter. When Jesus walked on water, in Matthew 14:28 it says, "Lord, if it's you," Peter replied, "tell me to come to you on the water." And when Jesus said, “Come,” Peter did. We live thinking we can’t walk on water. But Jesus did, and Peter, with his faith in Jesus, did too.

 I, too, want to do something amazing for Jesus! If I am hearing Him right, everything He has brought about in my life has prepared me for this sweet calling. Even my heartbreak. So I say as Peter did, “Lord, if it’s you, tell me to come to you.”  One thing we know for sure from His word: He does answer.

Monday, February 14, 2011

A Valentine

How long, O Lord? David wrote in the Psalms. All of us have felt overlooked or unanswered at one time or another. I am not feeling overlooked, but am tired of looking to God and wanting something. Of course I have many needs that God supplies without me even being aware of it through the day. But there are other things I have asked and asked for and have not gotten, in God's wisdom. I have searched my heart- and God's word about that in the past 2 months.

And now I am at a place of losing preconceived notions about what God will or won't do, or what His will is for me. Who knows His will, until He bends our paths and leads us? We know some general things that are His will for us in Christ Jesus, as His word tells us. But specifically, He shows us as we go. He shows us through sermons, circumstances, and the wise counsel of trusted family and friends. He even shows us through dreams sometimes.

I am to a place with my husband, The Pres as I call him, of not wanting to manipulate him into doing what I want. I find I appreciate him more and more for who God made him to be, and how he serves us- me and Fidget- every day of the year. Maybe the best valentine is accepting each other just how we are and loving each other for who they are, who God gave us to love. 

We all want to be better than we are, lose our bad habits and be charitable toward others all the time in our thoughts and actions. But we are who we are, and having someone love you for who you are right now is priceless. There is no more genuine love. My husband has long followed Christ's example of loving me in the meantime, not just at the end when I am better- and in heaven, perfect. No one, not even someone great, deserves that. His love is a valentine that doesn't depend on flowers on a certain day or chocolates, though those are nice. His love, like God's, is a valentine for every day of the year.