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Archive for September, 2010

A Gift

Two years ago I received a gift.  It didn’t look like a gift at first because it came wrapped in the trauma of CPR, ambulance and ER staff, intensive care, ventilators and waiting rooms.  It was stuffed with the tissue paper padding of prayer, friends and family, competent doctors and practical helps at home and on the farm.

Despite overwhelming odds, God preserved Calvin’s life at 4:24, Sept. 4th, 2008.  He is a gift- to me, his family and to each person he knows or with whom he comes into contact.   He is keenly aware of living on borrowed time and of living that time fully.  He genuinely cares about you and wants to share his story as well as hear your story.

Today I awoke early to the sound of Calvin softly breathing next to me.  My first thought was about the events of two years ago and life since that time- it continues to be an adventure.  Yesterday it involved bringing in a pest control company to exterminate an angry mob of bumble bees up in a our swather!  But I digress…

Today, Calvin got up and went to his favorite event of the week, men’s Bible study, where he drinks coffee, studies the Bible and prays with men he loves fiercely.   He grieves over the parts of Scripture he can’t remember exactly, but I remind him that he is living the principles taught there consistently every day.  He faces the disappointment of the certain things he can’t do anymore and after a time of mourning he chooses to  cheerfully accept them and to stand in faith that one day he will again, either by hard work, being healed further, or in heaven.  I am amazed at his resilience, tenacity and humility.  I am trying to take lessons!

A year ago our church family came to help us celebrate all God has done both in our lives and theirs and we built an altar to commemorate His work in our lives.  It remains as a visible reminder of the blessings in life each time we look out the window.

Life has continued forward in the past couple years.  Laura spent a semester studying abroad and another summer in East Asia.  We gained a new daughter in law, Savannah,  and later a granddaughter, Addy, who is now one year old.  Ben is helping significantly an the farm and they have been staying with us the past few months as they have been pursuing a home.  They recently closed on one in Lindsborg so we’re excited for them.  Calvin broke his arm on the ice last winter and I turned 50 in August (it is my Jubilee year!!).  Bethanie has run a full marathon and Darrin cheered her on.   My mother (age 86) brought my sister and I to Sweden this summer which has been on my “bucket list” for several years- it was such an amazing experience to be with them and to see our homeland.

We are evolving our businesses to fit our “new normal” and we are praying and working to move forward into new work venues that will fit us both.  This has proved to be a challenging process and we would appreciate your prayers as it is so multi-faceted.  For now we continue to farm and recently sold the real estate business (but I am working to gain my real estate license and plan to sell for the new broker).  We are determined to find God’s best for us in a win-win situation.

I leave you now with a “thank you” for being a part of our lives and for being there for us in so very many ways.  We are more grateful than you can ever know.  Following are part of the lyrics to one of many songs that mean so much more to us now.

“I Will Rise” by Chris Tomlin:

There’s a peace I’ve come to know, though my heart and flesh may fail.  There’s an anchor for my soul, I can say- it is well …

God has been an anchor- if you need an anchor in your life for any reason, we’d love to tell you more about it.

Life is good!  Come and visit us, the coffee pot is on and the bumble bees in the swather are gone!

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The Jubilee Year

On August 11th I turned 50 years old.  I’m a half century old!  I remember reading a t-shirt once that said, “50’s not old if you’re a tree”.   And now I’m reading, “50 is the young person’s old and the old person’s young”.  How true.  The mannequin, Madge, made it to my birthday party- she was a bit aloof  I might add!

The birthdays that end in a zero are always reflective.  As I prayed and pondered over this one it came as clear as a bell- it’s a Jubilee Year!  This is my jubilee year!  I plan on celebrating Jubilee all year long and invite you to celebrate as well.

In Leviticus God told his people to care for the land in a way that let it rest every 7th year so that the land observed a Sabbath rest.  Then they were to count 7 sabbaths of years-  seven sets of seven years (say THAT fast), amounting to 49 years and the next year was the year of jubilee.

“Consecrate the fiftieth year and proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants.  It shall be a jubilee year for you.”  Leviticus 25:10a

Part of the dictionary definition of “consecrate” is to declare or set apart as sacred or to dedicate solemnly to a service or goal.
Now I know that this is a stretch of application for this Scripture, but I desire to set apart this 50th Jubilee Year as one dedicated to living in liberty and proclaiming liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants- the liberty of studying God’s Word, walking obediently with the Spirit and experiencing God’s blessings of freedom, rest and safety.  Want to walk along?
Lord, I don’t always feel free, restful and safe.  Will you show the way to true jubilee- to being liberated from the things that prevent us from walking in Your deep and true freedom, peace and joy? Thank you for being constantly present and constantly accessible through Your Spirit and Your Word.
Leviticus 25:10a;  Isaiah 61


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