Sunday, January 1, 2012

Out with the old!

4:44 p.m. Today's project was to remove all of the ornaments and lights off of the Christmas Tree. We'd enjoyed a lightly-attended church service where Pastor taught on Exodus 33, where Moses had asked to see God's glory, but was rewarded by seeing his holy, merciful and gracious character. The very sight left his face glowing to the point that his countenance was too bright for talking to the people! (Exodus 34:29-35) But the message was to desire more of God Himself, not only His benefits. We ended the service with communion, where I required assistance from usher and friend Jimmy Kamio to remove the plate of cups, because I had both Steve's and my cups in my hands. His hands are shaking so much these days!

After church, we fellowshiped with daughter Heidi and her husband Pavel, and also traded devotionals:   Oswald Chambers' My Utmost for His Highest from me, for Charles Spurgeon's Morning & Evening from them.We made a deal last year, when both son Steven and I raved about Chambers). I am not sure whether I've read Spurgeon's but I know Heidi is in for a powerful year of devotions! I read My Utmost for two years in a row every 4 or 5 years, and then look for something else to add to my morning quiet time.

After some fun visiting with young friends in front of the sanctuary, all of whom are planning ministry trips this year, Steve and I went to Winco for a few items in preparation for our Korean student who arrives Tuesday. At first, I was trying to pre-think of what I should buy for her breakfast and lunch, but thought the better of it: why not give her an American grocery shopping experience and let her pick a few things. For dinner she'll just have to eat whatever I cook, again, for the American home experience. I'm praying that all that happens in our home will be a a good witness to her. 2 Timothy 4:2 tells those of us in a leadership position,

Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and teaching.

And I pray our language barrier won't be too severe!

Once I finished making Steve's lunch, it was time to get to business with the tree. He kept grabbing the ornaments instead of removing the hangers from the branches, so I went ahead with that project and had him spend time in the backyard, on small tasks so I could get the ornaments off and into their small boxes, as well as the lights. But in the meantime, Steve was putting paper and cardboard in the regular trash and vice versa, risking a warning note from the City sanitation workers for our mistake. They have private vendors who earn a living recycling the paper and plastic items, so we do try to be compliant citizens, a la Romans 13:1,  that tells us to respect civil authorities.

Despite constant interruptions to help Steve complete his various activities, all of the ornaments are off of the tree! Now, I'm thinking of asking my dad to come over tomorrow to drag the tree out; but he just might be a bit hesitant after the confused mess that happened, albeit with a much larger tree, when he came over to help Steve  take the tree out last year. (see "A few hours off", posted January 7, 2011). Maybe I'll wait until a caregiver comes over tomorrow night to help us haul it outside. This student visitor is causing me to meet faster deadlines for returning the house to its regular state than I've been able to keep in decades! 2012 is already looking good, very promising.

Yet, 2012 is going to present some challenges: one exciting example is boosting my Mary Kay income to finance a trip to Israel with our church in 2013. I'm not going to let "being realistic" stand in the way of accomplishing the vision the Lord has given me!

As I talked to my dad this evening, I know that 2012 is going to be rough for him with his prostate cancer manifesting new symptoms; and my own back, neck shoulders and joints are feeling their age with arthritis and heavy work around the property that was at least shared with Steve until a few weeks ago.

We have a lot of variables this year in our lives. 2012 will be a year when I must take my stand and see what the Lord ordains to occur. Habakkuk 2:1-3 inspires me for the upcoming year.

I will stand my watch
And set myself on the rampart,
And watch to see what He will
   say to me,
And what I will answer when I 
   am corrected.

Then the LORD answered me and
"Write the vision
And make it plain on tablets,
That he may run who reads it.
For the vision is yet for an
  appointed time;
But at the end it will speak, and it
  will not lie.
Though it tarries, wait for it;
Because it will surely come,
It will not tarry.

"Behold the proud,
His soul is not upright in him;
But the just shall live by his

God is going to do magnificent things in 2012, and I plan to hitch my faith to His magnificence!

No comments:

Post a Comment