Prayer, Faith and Patience

Faith and Patience; Patience and Faith

Question: Are our prayers given in faith and patience with confidence or in demand with entitlement? #prayersofachild #faith #patience Click To Tweet

“Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus,… let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith…”  

“The Lord is good to those who hope is in Him, to the one who seeks Him;    it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.”  


 – Hebrews 10:19,22
– Lamentations 3:25-26

Faith & Patience

A few months ago we had planned a family camping trip to celebrate our oldest son’s birthday. It turned unseasonably cold (for Mississippi in November)  so we decided to rent cabins instead. All six adults and three grandchildren were gathered in the living were of one cabin, ready to share a meal together.

We joined hands and asked, “Who wants to pray?”

and Grantlee, our two-year-old grandson said, “Me!”


We bowed our heads. Grantlee closed his eyes, and with the most serious of expressions on his face, prayed the following words.

“I Grantlee Atchison, and I want it now. Amen.”

All of us burst out into laughter because it was cute and funny.

Kids! You just never know what they will say or do! 

But Don’t We Act the Same?

Later, I was telling my prayer group of our cute little grandson’s prayer. As we laughed, we suddenly realized a sobering thought:  Isn’t that the way we do God? We come to Him in prayer, and whether our words are eloquent or simple, we often convey this message.

Dear God, this is what I want and when I want it. Please hurry. Amen." #childsprayer #patience Click To Tweet

A Child Shall Lead Them

Oh, it is so humbling to be preached to by a toddler. Since that fun-filled evening, I have reflected many times on Grantlee’s innocent, heartfelt, powerful prayer. “I want it now. Amen.” I laugh, but then I think, really think.
Hebrews 10:19-22 assures us that we can approach God’s throne of grace with confidence. Lamentations 3:25-26 reminds us that we must wait, and the Lord will deliver an answer. 

Faith and Patience Prayer

Now, when I remember that little prayer, I bow my head and say, “Lord, You know what I want and when I want it. But You also know that what I need most is what You want in Your time and Your way. Keep me asking, but waiting on You with faithful patience. Amen.”

-Glenae Atchison

Other thoughts on Prayer

93 Years of Marriage: An Heirloom Wedding Gown

My daughter celebrates her first year of marriage this Sunday. I’ve been wanting to share about her wedding gown all this time. Finally! Here’s the story starting at the beginning in 1957. Canton, Ohio

Restored wedding gown,
Mikaela and Ethan, May 18, 2018

The Bride Wore a Satin and Lace Wedding Gown

April 21, 1956 – East Sparta Methodist Church – The bride wore Satin and Chantilly lace with a cathedral length train and a fingertip veil. The gown was handmade by the bride, Elaine Easterday. (my mother). The hem was so long that she has all her bridesmaids come over and help her finish the hem before the wedding. She married a handsome dairy farmer, Gene Dawson, from Louisville, Ohio. They said “standing room only” with over 400 guests attending. {Mom said the cost was $36}

1957 Gene and Elaine
original wedding gown made by Elaine, worn by daughter and  granddaughter
Gene & Elaine April 21, 1956

Off to Finish College

Gene had one more year at Ohio State University School of Agriculture. So they moved their few belongings down to Columbus, Ohio. Wedding gifts and such were packed away in the attic of the family farm. The gown was packed along with a few other special gowns in a cedar chest made by Gene’s brother, George.

family farmhouse
The Dawson Farm in Lousiville, Ohio before 1957

Fire Destroys the Family Farmhouse

March 1957 Louisville, Ohio – Elaine went to the farm and collected a few serving items to throw a birthday party for her beloved husband. She was now expecting their first child. It was the last she would see of her wedding gifts as a few days later, a fire would engulf the 3 story home and gut it completely.

farm house destroyed by fire
1957 after the fire

Upon surveying the damage, they saw the cedar chest high up on a beam. They knocked it down and it fell to the basement. The lid broke open to reveal her perfectly preserved wedding dress! No burnt ends or even the smell of smoke. (Just like Shadrack, Meshack, and Abednego! – Read Daniel 3)

The dresses were returned to the cedar chest and there they remained in the cedar chest for the next 32 years, except for a few times to just take a look. Like Mary’s little lamb, the chest went everywhere Gene & Elaine went. Their first home in Wooster, OH; Then two other rental farms in Louisville before moving back the homeplace. In 1975, the family, cows, and cedar chest moved to Cambria, Wisconsin.

Daughter Marries A “Farmer”

December 31, 1989 – Columbia, SC – Daughter, Amanda (me) marries Pastor Michael Farmer. Just a funny side note that has nothing to do with the gown, I said I would “NEVER marry a farmer or a pastor.” God has a sense of humor… I married Pastor Farmer. ha!

However, I always wanted to wear mom’s gown when I married; so I had mom bring it to me in Detroit, Michigan in October of 1989. We were together for my brother’s wedding. It was a bit snug on me but mom had left the seam allowances so a church friend, Gabriella, did the work to make it fit! {Cost: $36}

Michael & I married in West Columbia, SC on New Year’s Eve 1989 with over 300 in attendance. As we headed to San Deigo, CA for our honeymoon, Mom took the gown back to Wisconsin. We met them there a week later for a 2nd reception with the home folks.

Then we headed to Barnesville, GA were Michael was already pastoring. And the gown headed to the cleaners for preserving. {cost: $36} Michael & I did a bit of moving ourselves. And the gown followed us everywhere!

  • 1990 – Chattanooga, TN
  • 1992 – Savannah, GA
  • 1997 – Milwaukee, WI
  • 2003 – Moultrie, GA
  • 2015 – Pooler, GA

Fifty Years Celebrated

April 2006 – Randolph Wisconsin – After 50 years of marriage, 6 kids, and many foster children a couple deserves a party, right? We planned a western event for my parents. Our youngest brother, Le, helped us three girls create a CD for our parents. It was entitled “For All You’ve Done”. I brought out the gown so that it could be displayed.

antique wedding gown celebarting 50th anniversary
Mandy and her daughter at Mom and Dad’s 50th

Another Marriage Begins

May 19, 2018 – Savannah, GA – Mikaela and Ethan wed!

wedding gown before alterations
Mikaela in dress before alterations

Mikaela desired to wear the gown as well. She’s just a bitty thing and the gown swallowed her whole! We weren’t sure there was anything that could be down but we began searching for a seamstress.

.

.

But who do you trust with an heirloom such as this?

Who do you trust to alter your heirloom wedding gown? We found her! Click To Tweet

Fortunately, we found an awesome seamstress (in Waycross, GA) who is experienced with antique fabrics. She was excited and willing to update the dress to Mikaela’s style. At our first visit, Mikaela donned the wedding gown and told Mrs. Tammie what she would like. Mrs. Tammie pulled and pinned and tugged and offered ideas. Then we left the dress in her hands for about 3 months. (Hurricane Harvey plowed through Waycross during that time but the dress was safe.)

The Seamstress Works Her Miracle

January 2018 – First Fitting – It was hard to really visualize what Mrs.Tammie would do with the dress. But when Mikaela stepped from the dressing room tears filled our eyes and excitement filled our souls. {The cost this time, a bit more than $36.}

Ethan’s First Look

The wedding day arrived and sister-in-law, Tina drove to Waycross (about 2 hours) to fetch the gown. It was lovely. Just like Mikaela wanted. Her goal was to make her sweetheart cry. I believe, she succeeded as she entered the sanctuary on her daddy’s arm.

A huge thank you to Mrs. Tammie Thomas of Waycross, GA for doing the redesign. If you need alterations of any type, I definitely recommend her. And so did the girl trying on her third bridesmaid dress when we first arrived. The Okefenokee Living Magazine Spring 2017 featured Mrs. Tammie in their bridal Issue.

More story below…

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So Much Wedding Gown Fabric Left Over

Mom’s dress was so full. We had seemingly miles of unused fabric. So I started planning some repurposing. My first thought was a purse for Mom and I. And a small purse for Mikaela’s trousseau.

With plenty of fabric remaining still, I created a different style purse for my sisters who also have children preparing to marry. This gave each of us girls a part of mom’s dress to as a keepsake.

Still More Gown Fabric Left

The fabric seemed to multiply like the widow’s oil in 2 Kings 4:1-7. So, the next item we decided to make was a beautiful blessing gown for future grandbabies. No grandbabies will arrive in the near future, but I decided to make it now before the fabric ages more, or it gets lost. So I’ve gone to work on that. It will be waiting for any and all of the great grandbabies of Gene and Elaine to wear at their Baby Dedication. I found this free pattern and directions at See Kate Sew. I still have the finishing touches to do, but here’s what we have so far.

Will the Legend Continue? Who Knows?

The gown will return to it’s home in a cedar chest for years to come. You never know what could happen. But at this point, we have 93 years of good marriage represented in the gown.

Mom & Dad at 63 years, Mike & Mandy at 29 years, Ethan & Mikaela 1 year and we are all still counting.

Mandy Farmer

I’m certain that you know an heirloom wedding gown does not a great marriage make. Below you will find some great reading that may help you in this matter.

For more about the 2018 wedding click here.

wedding vows, redesigned antique wedding gown
Saying their vows led by both fathers.
wedding ceremony; cathedral train

Amish People In Rural Wisconsin

Part of living in rural Wisconsin was experiencing the Amish people.  It was not uncommon to hear the “clipity-clop” of the Amish horse and buggy coming into town.  They did their banking in town, their farming business with the feed mill, as well as purchasing their grocery needs from Friesland Foods.

As a little girl, I couldn’t wait till I heard them come into town.  My ears were tuned to the sound of the buggy wheels and the horse’s hooves hitting the asphalt.  I would launch from the house to the edge of the yard and look toward downtown.  If I was lucky, the horse and buggy would be parked by the store.  They always parked the buggy by the nearest light pole.

a horse is a horse of course, of course

I learned from experience you didn’t come upon a horse without calmly announcing your presence.  Amish buggy horses have blinders on, so they can only see straight ahead.  I always made sure to start talking to them as I picked grass on the lawns nearby and then I would feed them grass.  And on occasion, I would sneak them a sugar cube.

Usually, I waited long enough and an Amish man or woman would come out.  They always had time for small talk.  These horses were not the pets that I had imagined.  Horses were an important part of their everyday life and worked hard bringing the Amish folk around their community and beyond.

Dressed for success

Photo Credit: emailamyd

Always the same color scheme of grays, blues, browns, purples for clothes. Denim pants with suspenders and a colored shirt for the gentleman and boys and polyester tops and skirt bottoms with black tights and black shoes for the women.  Most everything was pinned on with straight pins. The fun part was seeing the little babies and toddlers in their Amish garb, bonnets, and straw hats. Very cute!  Younger children were always barefooted till it began to freeze and then shoes were put on.

The Amish are a very tight community.  Each Amish community has it’s own Bishop.  The Bishop is the spiritual leader for the community and also sets the tone for what “technologies” the community can participate in.  Any baptized male members are eligible for the Bishop position.  Members are voted upon for nominations, then they become a candidate and finally lots are drawn.  The bishops’ position is a very heavy spiritual responsibility and most consider it a relief to have not drawn the lot.

My favorite Amish store to go to was Mischlers Country Store.  All sorts of Amish brand food as well as homegrown produce, eggs and a large variety of bulk foods like flour, sugar, spices and more.  A late fall Saturday afternoon was my favorite time to go shop.  I enjoyed the many skylights, the soft lamplight lining the shopping aisles, along with the soft murmurs of the broken German the Amish girls spoke as they worked.

this ain’t your mama’s amish

Photo Credit: JoeKeim

I got an eye-opener the last time I stopped in the Lilac Woodshop.  I was walking around enjoying all the handcrafted furniture (some hand built right there and other pieces from Indiana). As I approached the desk the Amish owner looked up from his (wait for it…) laptop computer. WHAT!!?? Rewind… Yep, I saw that right.  He had a laptop computer and was telling me he was working on building his website. ! Don’t look now, but he also has a Facebook page.

In light of all this “English” (they refer to us non-Amish as the “English”) allowances he had, I decided to snoop around for electric lights and indoor plumbing.  I found the indoor bathroom (yahoo!) but was unable to find electrical outlets.  Somehow he must power his laptop… this would be fun to question the Amish owner.  But Brad was with me that day and could sense my curiosity, so he began herding me towards to door before I could begin my fifty questions with the owner.

I have a beautiful rocking chair made of hickory from “The Old Mr. Miller” who did a great job of crafting rocking chairs.  Mr. Miller also built beautiful bed sets and dining tables.  There are several families that have greenhouses, and an Amish bakery.  Some of the ladies offered (for a fee) an Amish tour of their home complete with an Amish home-cooked meal followed by a showing of the local ladies quilts.

If you ever get the chance to be out in Columbia County Wisconsin (same county Wisconsin Dells is in) be sure to wheel your way over to the Pardeeville/Dalton area.  Take a step back in time and enjoy a simpler way of life- the Amish way.

 

Michele

Practice what you speak

Practice What You Speak

Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths,

but only such as is good for building up,

as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.

Ephesians 4:29-30 (NLT)

A Godly Woman

I’m inspired by a godly woman from our church, Delores. A year or so before my illness, she lost her fight with stage 4 brain cancer. She was a vivacious lady around 60 years old living life to the full. She and her husband ran the local annual rodeo and a western store. 

One Saturday evening, she laid down because she had a headache. The next thing you know, she was having a full-blown seizure. Soon afterward, we learned it was cancer. I have never seen someone have such a positive attitude. It was the most beautiful thing to see. She spoke life to the entire church during her journey to heaven. She would always tell us, Continue reading

I Remember Mama Movie Review

Movie review, I Remember Mama
Movie review

Bonus Mother’s Day Post

As we approach Mother’s Day, I thought I’d give an extra bonus movie review. I’m always reminded of this old movie that my daughter and I found while homeschooling. We were learning about immigration at the time and came across this wonderful black & white movie based on the book, Mama’s Bank Account by Kathryn Forbes. {affilitate}

The story of Kathryn’s recollection of her life growing up being immigrants to America from Norway. She recalls all the ups and downs and financial struggles of being in a new land.

I Remember Mama – movie plot

Loosely based on Kathryn Forbes’ book -Mama’s Bank Account-, this film actually contains richer detail and more intricate characterizations. In turn-of-the-century San Francisco, young Katrina Hansen chronicles episodes of life with her extended family, who combine traditional Norwegian values with “modern” American ways. So successful that it became a popular radio show, and then a TV sitcom, both with Barbara Bel Geddes and Irene Dunne from the film.


Molly Malloy <mailcall@intersource.com>

I didn’t realize this

I didn’t realize until now looking up information that I Remember Mama became a popular radio show and a TV sitcom.

At the time of this post, the movie is available on Amazon Streaming for $2.99 rental or or purchase the DVD for $13.99. {affiliate} The TV Series is available on HULU with your subscription.


It’s a wonderful movie for Mother’s Day because their mother was the rock in the family. You will also meet their quirky aunts and benevolent uncle. A heartwarming story.

Another Review


In the format of a story, aspiring writer Katrin Hanson recollects her life growing up in the early twentieth century San Francisco with her Norwegian immigrant family: her siblings Nels, Christine and Dagmar; and her Papa and Mama named Lars and Martha. Mama is the practical one in the family. One of the family’s rituals is doing the household financial accounts every Saturday night.

Using the money brought home by Papa and what is kept in their petty cash tin, Mama would allocate it to the weekly bills.

“It’s good – we do not have to go to the bank” is what Mama would say if they had enough money. Luckily, they never had to go to the bank as dipping into their bank account was the worst thing they could have done.

Beyond her practicality, Mama is truthful and compassionate and will do anything for those she loves. This not only includes her husband and children but also her “scary” Uncle Chris & her trio of sisters. – All four of whom can be difficult to love much of the time. – And their poor boarder, Mr. Hyde, who provides more to the family in his readings than any financial compensation ever could. But Katrin and her siblings learn of a lie told by Mama, all in the name of protecting them.


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I Remember Mama is a wonderful movie for Mother's Day. Their mother was the rock in the family. #iremembermama #mothersday Click To Tweet
Mandy Farmer

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“What Happened to your Faith? I seldom see you at Church.”

It’s easy as a church member to become judgmental when someone begins missing church too often. But many times there is good reason for their absence.

I’d love for you to read Shona Smith’s letter below. I met Shona through a mutual blogger who featured her a few weeks ago. Read Out of Sight, Out of Mind

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Dear friend from church and /or confused family member,

Do you know what I would love to be doing right now?

Dreams

  • I would love to be dancing in God’s presence and singing at the top of my voice as I lead others into His presence.
  • Or be racing out the door with the kid’s work and playing energetic games with them. And then having a deep satisfying discussion about the things of God and praying with them.
  • I would love to have gotten up early this morning. Spent hours in preparation for some delicious food in order to invite some random church people back for fellowship and an afternoon chatting and relaxing in the garden.
  • Oh, to be offering to have a friend’s children for her, even overnight, to give her and her husband some quality downtime.
  •  What would it be like to have a pristine house where food could drop on the floor and not have to be immediately thrown away?
  • I’d love to be baking cakes to invite you round to share with me…and for us to while away a couple of hours chatting about nothing in particular but feeling encouraged and refreshed afterward.
  • I would love to spontaneously drop in on our grandchildren and whisk them away for dinner with us.

BUT THIS IS NOT MY REALITY AND IT WON’T BE UNLESS I RECEIVE A MIRACLE!

What I'd Like to be Doing ... But this is not my reality and it Won't be unless I Receive a Miracle. #thisisfibro #chronicpain Click To Tweet

Reality

I’ve spent the last few years trying to find a new reality in the midst of

Managing fibro pain

Photo credit: National Lupus and Fibro Association

an illness that means some days I cannot find the energy to get dressed, let alone shower. My condition means that the thought of holding a short but deep conversation with one other person in the quiet of my home can fill me with horror because I know it might cost me all of that day’s energy. Every decision I take, every action I make has huge implications for the rest of my day or even my week. (See Mandy’s link on the subject)

On my very bad days, I cannot manage to stay upright, talking or reading or even watching TV and rely on others to bring me a drink and food in bed without talking to me.

On my best of days, I have to make careful decisions all day long about everything which will use my energy: showering, cooking, Facetime with my mum, reading, shopping, housework, conversation with my husband and family: everything costs and if I “overpay” the “interest rates” in payback can leave me bed-bound again for days or sometimes weeks.

 

Church Reality

When I make it to church it has been a really good week. There has been resting for at least one day before it and there will be resting for the remainder of Sunday and most of Monday. I often cannot manage to socialize or stay for a whole service as sitting upright, singing, loud noise, lots of people, chatting are all activities which use a lot of energy. If I have made it to church to join in, I often don’t have the energy to stay and socialize so I have to choose how long I will be there.

This is not the challenging bit…

Sometimes I am feeling quite strong and well so I stay out for a bit longer, chat away with people. I pray out loud in the service. Stand and chat over drinks after.

And all the while I feel fine BUT the next day or two days later I am unable to get out of bed or shower or talk and that may last for up to a week. It’s called PEM – Post Exertional Malaise – and it just comes on after any increase in my limited activity. I can stand for longer than usual, be squat down at some task for a few minutes, spend longer than usual cooking or stirring something and then two days later.

It’s like I’ve been pushing it too hard at the gym …it’s the equivalent lactic acid build up… my body prefers anaerobic production of energy to the muscles… and pain causes a “short circuit” so my batteries won’t recharge at all when I am in a lot of pain. It would take too long to explain it all but you can read some more about the challenges of attending church in my leaflet, “Christians with Chronic Illness“.

How’s my Faith?

So, what’s happened to my faith, the “doing, loving, running things, lots of ideas and activities, dancing, exuberant praising faith”?

My faith is still here. It’s kept me alive; it’s allowed me to hope that one day there will be more to my life again, it’s battled through dark lonely days of pain and crushing fatigue and feeling worthless. My faith has allowed me to find purpose in praying for and encouraging others. My faith has become something I am much more than something I do. (Mandy’s faith with Fibro)

What's Happened to my Faith? It's Still Here. It's keeping me Alive. Click To Tweet

When I Can’t Do What I Want

When I am frustrated by wanting to do something to love others but simply not having the energy to do it, my pastor recently encouraged me to tell them what was on my heart, even when it isn’t possible, because it encouraged him to know I had thought of the act of love or kindness. I was so encouraged by that word…someone seeing my heart and being encouraged by my desires even when I couldn’t carry through!

My faith has allowed me to celebrate the small things. The days when I can stand up long enough to make a meal or join in with a song at church; the days when I can drive to do our grocery shopping; the moments when I can have conversations at church and make friends; the moment when I was able to join in with a game with my grandsons. Despite the fatigue, sleep doesn’t come easily, so I often pray in the night over family and friends and whatever is on my mind… precious still moments with God when I hear His heartbeat and know I am partnering with him in the stillness.

Not all Roses!

My faith has also been battered. Why does God put so many ideas and thoughts in my heart when I don’t have the capacity to do any of them? Why did He give me gifts in teaching and leading and planning when my brain is now so often in a fog and I can be sat watching TV for hours and not even take anything in? I have no idea BUT I am learning to trust Him that He continues to have “good works which He has prepared in advance for (me) to do.” (Ephesians 2:10)  (See Mandy’s letter, If God is my Healer, Why am I still Sick)

What has happened to my faith?

I’ve been on a wilderness journey and been through all the emotions of grief for my old life, the shouting angry hopeless flailing that just “gets it all out there” and I am finally finding a stillness and a glimmer of hope that God knows exactly what He is doing and He has a plan… and I just want to do His will!

Wishing to be with you,

Shona Smith

Free Download

Download Shona’s helpful flyer for more ideas on How the Church Can Help The Chronically Ill.

Tune in for Shona’s interview on Premier Radio Woman to Woman on 22 May, at 11am GMT (http://www.premierchristianradio.com/radioplayer

More information about How to Help the Chronically Ill


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Elisabeth Elliot

Self-Discipline: A Matter of Grit and Grace

Welcome to the first of four LEgacy Link-ups for the summer of 2019! We are so excited! With Mother’s Day coming up, We would like this link-up to be All About Women who have or are Leaving a Legacy for us to follow. I started us out writing about Susie Spurgeon and Susanna Wesley. Now read what guest writer, Michele Morin from Living Our Days wants to share with us. Then write and share your own legacy story at the bottom.

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Self-Discipline: A Matter of Grit and Grace

With an empty house, a clean kitchen, laundry on the line (and even a sleeping dog!), it was a perfect afternoon to study or write. Deadlines were looming; however . . . the sun was shining, bath towels flapped and danced on the clothesline outside, and suddenly, while there was plenty that needed doing, the will to do it was lacking.

“Maybe I’ll call a friend,” I mused. “Or this would be a great day to wash windows!”

An Example to Live by

When I’m pondering the possibility of veering off course in some small way, I remember the faithful example of Elisabeth Elliot, who readily admitted that she was also subject to all the usual distractions and reluctance when it was time to sit down and write. She spoke of “taking herself by the scruff of the neck” and sitting herself down before the task at hand.

SHaping of a Christian Family
TSOACH, Updated in 2005

Raised by attentive parents who set high standards for her behavior, Elisabeth inherited a “habit of order” (TSOACH, 73) and a love for uncluttered efficiency that I have had to live my way into as an adult. Then, in the Ecuadorian jungles, Elisabeth witnessed the patient diligence of tribal people whose very lives depended upon their hard work through mud, thorns, snakes, steep climbing, and deep forests. Measuring her own small inconveniences against the lot of women who regularly carried hundred-pound packs on their backs, she was startled into an awareness of her tendency to complain about small inconveniences.

A Cracked Pot

Elisabeth had no illusions about her own status as a sinner, “a cracked pot” whose supreme privilege it was to reveal in her own life “the light of the knowledge of the glory of God.” (2 Corinthians 4:6) By grace, however, she was able to speak truth with grit, even on topics that are usually off limits. For example, with wry humor, she noted that no one is actually qualified to address self-discipline around eating habits because if you don’t struggle with your weight, you don’t know how hard it is, and if you do struggle, you’ve got no room to talk!

"..if you don’t struggle with your weight, you don’t know how hard it is, and if you do struggle, you’ve got no room to talk!" #Elisabeth Elliot #LegacyLinkUp Click To Tweet

Naturally slender, Elisabeth found to her surprise that as she aged, she could pick up a few extra pounds when she traveled. To avoid gaining weight unawares, she weighed herself daily, reasoning that (1) it’s better to keep weight off than to shed pounds once they have been gained; (2) it’s easier to lose five pounds immediately than fifteen pounds later.

Who Left a Legacy for Elisabeth?

A Lamp For My Feet

Mentored by the writing of Amy Carmichael, Elisabeth endeavored to apply the counsel that shaped Amy’s perspective in doing things that were not to her liking:  “See in it a chance to die.” (ALFMF, 30) The small offerings, tiny deaths to self that we make every day are a way of cooperating with God, and this is a theme that ran through Elisabeth’s writing and speaking ministries—because it also runs through Scripture. She described it as the “interworking of the will of God and the will of man.” (ALFMF, 21) Responding in self-discipline is an opportunity to participate in God’s work here on earth as surely as those who filled the water pots in Cana or distributed the loaves and fish on a grassy Galilean hillside.

So, I’ll do the next thing today, trusting God to put words on the page and grateful for the example of a mentor from afar. Elisabeth Elliot blended grit and grace so consistently that it is impossible to tell—and pointless to wonder—where one ends and the other begins.

-Michele Morin

Works Cited

{affiliate links}

A Lamp for My Feet, 1985 (ALFMF)

The Shaping of a Christian Home, 1992 (TSOACH)
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SUsanna Wesley motherhood

Legacy of Motherhood: The Life of Susanna Wesley

My Mother and the first three kids.
Mom with my brother, sister, and me

For as long as I can remember, my greatest desire was to be a mother. And why not? God blessed me with the greatest examples of motherhood that a girl could have. My own mother was a portrait of motherhood. She had 6 children and countless foster kids. And she loved them all well. She told us often how wonderful it was to have children. Unlike many women today, she dreaded the end of summer and sending her children off to school. She wanted them around her feet, pulling on her skirt tails. There was never any doubt that she was proud to be a momma.

Godly Grandmothers

And then there were my godly grandmothers. Oh my goodness, if I could live up to their lives I would be so proud, but that would just pull me down from the heights of glory because they were all of the humble kind.

One thing my Grandma Dawson was proud of was that I was her namesake. And once I learned what that meant, I was proud of it too.
If you look at my father, uncles, and aunt you know that she was a great example of motherhood. She was a servant of God and man. At her funeral, my Uncle said, “You could always find her on her knees, either in prayer or serving others.

"You could always find her on her knees, either in prayer or service to others." #motherhood #grandmother #legacy Click To Tweet

Grandma Dawson (Amanda Leona) was also named for her Grandmother Amanda Hukill. Though I never knew her, she left a legacy of perseverance and faith enough for all of us. I can look to her whenever I think I have had my share of trials because she dealt with more than I ever have.

I look to her whenever I think I have had more than my fair share of trials. #leavingalegacy Click To Tweet

So Many More Legacy Builders

So you can see that it was easy for me to want to be a momma myself. It seemed the greatest accomplishment to me, it still does. Early on, I began reading about others that have set an example that has passed the test of time. Jackie Green’s book Only One Life speaks of many women who have left a legacy for us. There are two Susanna’s that have stood out for me as perfect examples of motherhood (physically and spiritually), Susie Spurgeon, whom I have already written about and Susannah Wesley, mother of John and Charles Wesley.

#Motherhood The greatest accomplishment. #lleavingalegacy Click To Tweet
Susanna motherhood

Susanna Wesley, Wife of a Minister

Susanna, wife of Rev. Samuel Wesley, Sr. and educated herself stayed right up with her husband (and later, her sons) in theological studies, reading anything and everything in her husband’s library. Her husband traveled often to schools and preaching, leaving her to hold down everything at home. They report that while he was away if the substitute priest was not “up to par”, she would have Bible lessons that evening in her home. This grew quickly from just her small brood to include many of the church members.

Mother of Nineteen

Susanna Wesley had nineteen children but only 10 of them reached adulthood (two of which were John and Charles Wesley, founders of Methodism). It was important to her that her children, girls included, would be given an education and she did it. All of them began their formal education at home and the girls completed their education under her teaching. She determined to have a dedicated period of study time set aside for each child, individually, each week. (When I think about this now, and factor in that she was likely pregnant or nursing the entire time, I am amazed. Yikes!)

Susanna's unwavering discipline
photo credit: Holinesstoday.org

Legacy of Discipline & Resilience

Susanna managed the gardening, cooking, and housekeeping along with the children’s studies. She kept a regular time set apart for meditation and self-examination before God, keeping of a spiritual journal and strict adherence to the Sabbath. Susanna, known as a great prayer warrior, with a houseful of activity, would pull her apron up over her head to pray; the signal for no interruptions. She expected the same devotion by her children.. to spend an allocated amount of time in Bible study and prayer. She wrote in a letter for her son Samuel:

I will tell you what rule I observed when I was young, and too much addicted to childish diversions, was this — never spend more time in mere recreation in one day than I spent in private religious devotions.

Eliza Clarke, Susanna Wesley (London: W.H. Allen & Co., 1886), 68

I have often read the writings of young people from earlier centuries and marveled at the depth of thought in young minds. Susanna’s practices, which came from the Puritan heritage, are how such depth of thought can be found. We all might take heed and learn from them.

SUsannah's Devotion to God
www.holinesstoday.org

“Mother of Methodism”

Susanna Wesley, mother of Methodism. Not only because she was the Mother of the founding men, John & Charles, but because she kept up with her husband and sons in their studies. She remained deeply involved with them in establishing the Methodist Church. As I type this, I am realizing that her disciplines stated above were carried into the new Methodist movement. The worship style of Methodism is just that. Methodical and with reason. I also wonder if it wasn’t her Sunday afternoon lessons, that sparked the idea of Sunday School classes for better learning and further teaching. can teach

Susanna Wesley a Legacy of Discipline, Faith & Prayer #leavingalegacy Click To Tweet

Large Shoes to Fill

The Life and Legacy of Susanna Wesley leave much for us to learn and follow. I encourage you to do some research on your own and perhaps take one area to use as an example to follow. There are many sources available for purchase; however, most of what I write today comes from the magazine Holiness Today, September/October 2018 issue which can be read online.

www.holinesstoday.org

What an excellent legacy to follow.

I pray that I do.

Mandy Farmer
summer of legacy

Legacy Link-ups are now Open

Click on the link of the month below.

Each month a different theme

  • May ~ Women
  • June ~ Men
  • July – Leaving a Legacy Through Blended Families (his/hers/ours/theirs or interracial families
  • August ~ Leaving a Legacy Through Adoption (from all viewpoints)

See you next week!

My Heritage Cooking Crash Course Adventure

 

Recently I stumbled upon a cooking class called “Heritage Cooking Crash Course“.  The words “crash course” got my attention.  What Dutch girl wouldn’t want an element of danger to spice up her otherwise “Dutchy” way of life?  So, kicking off my wooden clogs I grabbed a mug of tea-milk, some olie bollen and with one click of the mouse, I was the thirty-third HCCC member and my E-material was electronically winging its way to my email box. YES!  I could feel the danger already.

my house on the prairie

First I had to do a little bit of registering and confirming.   Then I had to set up a password so that I could get into the online class and begin. With all my “ducks in a row”  I entered the class and signed up for the super- secret Facebook HCCC community page. Pretty quick and simple.

The Heritage Cooking Crash Course teaches you the old pioneer and homesteaders ways of cooking and baking.  One of the slogans was ” Cook LIke Ma Ingalls”.  That brought me right back to the “Little House on the Prairie” episode with Ma Ingalls stirring some stew in a cast iron pot over the fire in their fireplace.  This was sure to be down-home goodness, and open flames to boot!

Looking over the course I noted 10 modules (classes).  Each one had their own video which you could follow along with and watch Jill Winger make: a sourdough starter, sourdough bread, homemade pie crust, sauerkraut, homemade sausages, how to pressure cook, water bath canning and much more.  All great skills any gal worth her salt in the kitchen should learn.  As a quick side note, should you want to take the course just click on this affiliate link and it will direct you toward class information and registration, and you can also buy the materials directly from this link.  Just so you are aware I do receive a small commission from anyone who signs up for the course. Thank you in advance.  It helps with upkeep on our MandyandMichele blog.

Baking like a pioneer

I had been looking at sourdough starter recipes since last summer.  I read various blogs and copied recipes but never quite committed to trying it until now.  Jill Winger, the founder of The Prairie Homestead and The Heritage Cooking Crash Course is your guide.  She is a no-fuss kind of gal, simply dressed standing in her very own farm kitchen.  You feel like your sitting at her kitchen table watching her work while you get to drink coffee and enjoy the presentation.  Jill uses simple terms, explains her techniques and then demonstrates them.  It’s that simple.

Jill weaves her everyday homesteader life into her cooking.  She relies heavily on her families own homestead products of meat, eggs, vegetables, and grains.  Jill loves homesteading and encourages others to try this simple nostalgic way of life and cooking.  Living like a homesteader may not be for you, but cooking like one may be just what the doctor ordered.

module #2

From the get-go, you will appreciate the fact that you have lifetime access to these courses.  You can skip around the modules as one module doesn’t build off the other.  Along with this course, as I mentioned above, you can join the secret Facebook HCCC page and ask questions of fellow classmates and Jill -this is a nice feature.

I decided to start off with Module #2 which featured Wild Yeast Sourdough Starter and Sourdough bread baking.  I enjoyed the fact you didn’t need fancy cooking/baking products.  Jill has a list of what is needed for the module, but she also helps you to make adaptations in case you don’t have exactly what she uses.

Making the sourdough starter was a bit challenging.  I drew comfort from the fact that I was not alone in the failures of the pursuit as I read several postings of others who were frustrated over not getting a culture started.  But after two, 7 day long attempts, I struck wild yeast gold. Finally it cultured!

Sourdough cultures like to grow where it’s warm, dark and somewhat humid.  I tried starting a culture on the counter by the refrigerator and when that failed, I put a one up above the fireplace and finally it took off.  You can bet I was pretty excited when I looked into the jar to find it had grown.  All frothy bubbly and looking yeast happy, I proudly showed the culture to my husband.  I took pictures and posted on Facebook, and then sent texts to my sister and girlfriends.

I was one proud yeasty momma.  Before I knew it, I had eight cultures going -I had this down!   But my house and refrigerator could take no more of my mothering.  So I did my best to find good homes for them on Facebook and through phone calls.

Good thing I didn’t have this talent for making babies because that could have gotten way out of hand! Kind of like “The Old Women Who Lived In A Shoe”. Yikes!

Into the oven, you go

Now that I had cultures, I needed to use them.  So I set to work with my first sourdough bread.  I was a smashing success.  There was no interference by any barn cat, which if you have read my other articles, seems to be problematic.  The recipe is very simple. raises overnight while you sleep and bakes in a dutch oven. By mid-day, I had a lovely loaf of sourdough.  It was definitely delicious.  I went on to bake sourdough blueberry muffins, sourdough crackers, and sourdough pancakes.  All fun and delicious.

Sourdough is a great addition to your diet.  Because of the fermentation process, it is easier to digest the gluten as well as keeping your glycemic index low.  For those of us getting older this is a win-win.  Hope this inspires you to try the Heritage Cooking Crash Course and culturing your own sourdough starter!

 

Michele

 

 

 

 

 

explain the pain

Explaining What Fibro Pain is Like

Can you describe the pain

I’ve never really experienced pain. What is it like?

For me, it’s hard to imagine what NO PAIN is like. I have had pain most of my life. Some of it, I thought was just normal for everyone.. until I was diagnosed. I’ll try to explain below.

You've never experienced pain? Well, let me tell you about it. #fibro Click To Tweet
divider

Dear Friend;

fibromyalgia is real
This post was updated and moved from Mandy previous webpage www.ggmandy.com

To really understand what is happening with Fibromyalgia, we need to understand how pain works. We have an amazing body. The whole system of how messages are sent through our body to the brain is remarkable to me. We have thousands, maybe millions of little tiny nerve endings that speak to each other and pass the message along. It’s mind-boggling how it works. But it’s a safety mechanism of sorts.

Each tiny nerve has a receptor on the end which “talks” to the connecting nerve receptor These messages move along the nerves until they reach the brain. Then the brain returns a message to tell your muscles how to handle it. It does this all with lightning quick speed. Think about if you were to touch a hot stove, your hand quickly pulls away. You don’t have to think about it. You don’t have to do anything, your body just responds. And this is wonderful.

Fibromyalgia nerve receptors send the wrong message. #fibro Click To Tweet


However, with fibromyalgia, the nerve receptors are sending the wrong message.

Reminder:  I am a patient, not a doctor. What I am sharing comes largely from what my doctors taught me and what I have discovered in my own searching.

I am sharing to hopefully help you be informed enough to support friends with this syndrome or possibly acquire informed questions for your doctor. Please talk with your doctor or visit the Mayo Clinic website for official information, diagnosis, and treatment.

phone game
Telephone Game – photo credit free at Pixabay.com

Remember when you were a kid and you played the telephone game? One would whisper a message to one person, then he whispers to the next one, and she whispers to the next, and so one. What happened by the end? The message was completely different.

Our bodies have nerve all over. Each nerve has a receptor on each end. These receptors pass the information along to the brain. Then the brain sends back a message on how to respond. Such as,

  • “No danger move on”
  • “That hurt a little”
  • “Good grief that hurt” Rub that spot a bit.
  • “severe pain” double over and scream
  • “You are in grave danger” “run, move quickly away”

This is how fibro pain works.

The nerve receptors are passing the message along, but then one receptor changes it up. And what was a small prick is now amplified.  Like the dial on your radio, the more you turn it up, the louder it becomes. By the time the message arrives at the brain, it is telling the brain, “This is a severe situation”. So the brain responds in kind and sends the message back that something must change to stop the pain. But the receptors keep sending that PAIN message back to the brain.

Here’s an example we were given at Mayo Pain Clinic. When you put your socks on in the morning, at first you can feel your sock, but your brain says this is ok, not a problem. And after that, you are hardly aware that you have socks on. However, with fibromyalgia, the brain keeps sending the DANGER message. “There’s a sock on your foot!” “There’s a sock on your foot”

www.mayoclinic.org
Reminds me of this from Disney’s Monster’s Inc movie

With fibro pain, the message may just keep coming back as “DANGER” or the message is greatly amplified. [The pain can be multiplied by up to 200 times]. The brain receives the amplified message and responds accordingly.

This is why just a touch, a poke, or a hug can be so painful.

photo credit for all photos: Fibromyalgia and Lupus National Coalition Butterflies
#fibromyalgia pain can be multiplied, or turned up, 200 times the actual pain. Click To Tweet

Amplified Pain

This amplified sensation can affect not just the sense of feeling but also your sense of hearing, smelling, and taste. For myself, I have become less tolerant of noise, such as a roomful of children, or even a vacuüm cleaner running. And lately, I’ve even noticed that spicy food is spicier than usual. I recently wrote about some of the things I can no longer do in another post. Check out this diagram to see all the areas that can be affected by this amplified pain.

photo credit
photo credit for all photos: FibroColors on Facebook

I hope this explains the pain for you. What’s really strange is that you never really know from day to day how the pain will be. Some days a quite normal. Others, not so much. Also, it depends on the person how much pain is involved. Different people respond differently to protocols for maintenance. Some are helped with medications, some with exercise, therapy, diet, etc. It’s all still pretty much a crapshoot.

Watch for more “letters” from me and my friends to learn more about this crazy invisible disease.

Mandy Farmer
Fibromyalgia Awareness Day

SOURCES


Fibromyalgia National Coalition  – Background information

Mr Doctor dot Com  – Pain and How You Sense it