True Thankfulness

Here it is Thanksgiving time again. Have you ever really sat down and given thanks for all you have, without wishing you had something else? It is definitely a hard task. I hope you all have a wonderful and blessed holiday.

Cheese Acres Farm

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Here are a few thoughts about thankfulness that I’d like to share.

First, God tells us we should be thankful in everything. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 says we are to be thankful in all circumstances. Ephesians 5:20 tells us to give thanks always and for everything. Give thanks ALWAYS? For EVERYTHING? You might wonder how a person is to give thanks when they are: broke, jobless, homeless, have a serious illness, lost a precious family member, or any other crises they are facing. Yet, these two verses clearly tell us give thanks to God in all circumstances.

I’m sure you have heard the expressions, “It could always be worse”, and “There is always somebody worse off than you.” (By the way, those are the last things a person in despair wants to hear)
When we go through the difficulties that life throws at us and we feel there is no one…

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On this day

And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn. And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn. And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger. And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child. And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them. (‭Luke‬ ‭2‬:‭4-20‬ ESV)

From our house to yours, we wish you the merriest Christmas and the most blessed new year!

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My thoughts on 9/11

Do you remember where you were, what you were doing when you first heard or saw the news that day? I don’t think there is a single soul in America who doesn’t, one who is old enough to remember anyway. I was standing in my mother’s kitchen getting ready to go with her to a doctors appointment as we heard the news of the first plane crashing into the Twin Towers. And before we wrapped our heads around that, the second one collapsed. As I think about it, the feelings I had that day come back to the forefront of my mind and my heart. Shock, disbelief, horror, sadness, what do we do now?
I also remember staring in horror at the television when the space shuttle exploded with school teacher Christa MCauliffe aboard. Although just a wee tot at the time I saw how devastated our country was and still is over President Kennedy’s assassination.
This time though we felt violated and hated as well. As a nation, a people, a country -we are hated because we are Americans. America, the same country that allows everyone to make their home here, and rushes to everyone’s aid. Just doesn’t seem right does it?
What does our Lord tell us to do about those who hate us?
Hate evil, you who love the Lord. He protects his followers and saves them from evil people. (‭Psalms‬ ‭97‬:‭10‬ ERV)
But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, (‭Matthew‬ ‭5‬:‭44‬ NIV)

So in all my “wisdom” this means love the sinner not the sin. Pray for and witness to the people who do wrong to us because our God is a loving God who wants no one to perish. Do we fight the evil infiltrating our country? Heck yea! Have you read some of the battles in the Bible? But we need to be fighting according to God’s plan. Always according to his plan.
How do we do this? Pray for our leaders. Daily, continually, without ceasing, pray for our country and it’s leaders.

To those who lost family, friends, loved ones one this tragic day, God bless you and we applaud your loved ones bravery.

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How does your garden grow?

The Parable of the Sower
LUKE 8:5-8

“A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds of the air ate it up. 6 Some fell on rock, and when it came up, the plants withered because they had no moisture. 7 Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up with it and choked the plants. 8 Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown.”

We planted some vegetables in very sandy soil and have had a hard time keeping them moist enough. We put in drip irrigation and it has helped, but I think we will reserve that area from now on for a crop that needs less water.
My herbs are doing very well in their large box so I’m guessing the soil, moisture and sunlight they are getting is perfect. The corn is looking good, if we can keep the raccoons out it should be successful this year.
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The strawberries are delicious and the blackberries and blueberries are beginning to bloom.
Potatoes are doing great so far this year and we are getting ready to do more planting soon, of course matching each crop with the soil, moisture and sunlight it needs.
Judging by the looks of the gardens so far most of our seeds have fallen on good soil and are yielding a good outcome just as the farmers in verse 8 of this parable.

Jesus used many examples of gardening, growing crops etc in his parables. Just as we sow our seeds in hopes of a plentiful crop, He and the disciples sowed the word of God to the people in that day. Just as the seed fell on hard ground and wouldn’t grow, some people along the path heard, ignored, and Satan hardened their hearts so they wouldn’t believe. Some people heard, listened and believed, but felt no joy because they weren’t firmly rooted. They were influenced by the world and never matured spiritually, just as the seed lacked moisture and was choked out by weeds. However, some people heard, listened, applied the word, and retained it in their hearts and just as the seed they grew.

If you are like a seed that has fallen on hard ground, act quickly before your heart is too hard.

For those who are withering and being choked out there is still time to do some watering and weeding. Drench your soul deeply with God’s word and make sure you get those suckers by the roots when you pull them out. Just like the weeds in our gardens, the evil in our lives loves to return with a vengeance.

If you are growing are you continually sowing new seeds? Our gardens and God’s kingdom will not continue to grow unless we sow seed every season.
Every day that I wake up there is a plentiful amount of good soil out there in this world just waiting on me and others like me to sow seeds so they can grow and know The Lord. The question is, how does your garden grow? Sown any seeds lately?

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Easter, the Resurrection & Why I have Inner Peace

Inner Peace. Isn’t that something we all need? I know I certainly have it. And I will tell you why in a minute 🙂 I’d like to thank my friend Don over at http://doncharisma.org/about/ for nominating me for and for creating this Inner Peace award which in turn prompted this post.

The conditions for accepting this award are that you write a short piece on why you are accepting it. It is also suggested that you forward it on to other bloggers who you think would like it. A few, or as many as 10. It is up to you.

Why I’m Accepting The Inner Peace Award

There is only one reason that I have inner peace. I find it appropriate to accept this award as Easter draws near. I adore Easter baskets filled with candy, pastel colored eggs and dresses, bunnies, chickies and all the frill that goes along with a “secular” Easter celebration. I love the family get togethers, the egg hunts, the potato salad, the deviled eggs, etc. But what I love most of all is knowing that Easter represents the day my Saviour arose from the grave. A tomb could not hold him. The stone was rolled away and He walked out of that tomb. Knowing that I am loved enough that even if I were the only sinner on earth my Jesus would have still suffered and died and then rose again for my sins is more than enough to give me complete and total inner peace.
I don’t need to argue with people whether it is right for a Christian to participate in egg hunts, Christmas trees, trick or treating or any other part of the worlds holidays. I live in this world and I enjoy the things on it and in it. But I am not of this world. I am made in the image of Christ and do my best to honor Him. When I blow it, and I do often and big, there is Grace to cover me. And that is another post for another day.
No matter what happens, no matter how bad it gets, I know that all is well with my soul!
And that is why I have inner peace. Happy Easter, Happy Resurrection day!

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. (1 Peter 1:3-4 NIV)

These are a couple bloggers who inspire me! They are both quite young. One I have been following for some time, and one I just stumbled upon. They are both great. I feel they might want to share their inner peace as well so I am awarding them and look forward to reading their blogs!

http://dewdropcorner.wordpress.com/about/

http://agraciouswoman.wordpress.com/about-me/

Badge Gallery

http://doncharisma.org/2013/10/30/awards-day-gegebearbear-inner-peace-sunshine-awards-thankyou/inner-peace-award/

Why bad things happen to good people

I’ve reflected on this topic a lot lately. Probably because a few friends who have lost full term babies recently have been on my mind and in my heart. I also know, as I’m sure you do, people who have and are currently experiencing major illness, life changing family situations, death, financial hardship, and other catastrophic events we can only imagine. So where is God while we face these hardships one might ask?

One of my very favorite books series was made into a movie. The author is Janette Oke and the series is Love Comes Softly. Despite the name it is a pioneering story full of hardships, tragedies, hard work, faith in God and yes, love. In the story when Clark meets Marty there has already been tragedy. He has lost his wife, she her husband. A little girl (Missy) has lost a mother. In my very favorite scene as Marty is screaming at Clark after his barn has just burned to the ground,”How can you believe in a God who let’s things like this happen? Did you pray for the barn to burn down, Did you pray for Ellen to be taken from you, for Missy to grow up without a mother?” Clark, in his calm, mild way takes her had and tells her to come on, “we’re going to church”! His church is a beautiful scenic mountain overlook that if I tried to describe I would fail miserably. As they sit on a log he explains that even though Missy is right beside him, she can still fall and get hurt. As her father, he will pick her up, dust her off, check her wounds, and love her. Even though he was right beside her she still fell and got hurt. He didn’t allow it, he didn’t cause it, but he was there to help her when it happened. That is the way our Heavenly Father is with us. And then he left Marty to think on it.

So as you struggle with whatever it is you are facing, follow Clark’s lead. Go to “church”. Whether your church is a walk in the forest listening to the birds, a mountain view, a peaceful stream,watching a gorgeous sunset, sitting in the park, your farm and chickens at play, whatever in God’s nature brings you comfort and rest, go to “church” and listen for His voice. Think on it. Pray on it.

Blessings,
V.

Serenity
Serenity
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Cheese Acres pre-Christmas fun!

As you celebrate this year we wish you a wonderful and blessed Christmas. As we all unwrap presents and feast lets remember why we celebrate the season!

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. (Luke 2:11-14 KJV)

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