Saturday, May 24, 2014

Dog Days

Why are dogs considered man's best friend? Maybe because they listen, but don't offer advice.
As a child, we had a wavy black cocker spaniel. I remember a mostly happy childhood, but during my sad times, Blackie became my friend and a good listener. She cried with me as we sat in the backyard and I told her all my troubles as an eight-year old.
Several years later, we owned a light brown cocker. Taffy disappeared one day and we assumed someone stole her.
Daddy decided to raise Weimaraners, a hunting dog breed, so we moved to the country, rented a ranch and bought a female named Lady. My father's adventure didn't last more than a year because the first time Lady came in heat, Daddy tied her in the horse trailer to keep any unwanted neighbor dogs away. Most dogs do not appreciate being tied up and Lady didn't either. She tried to make her escape, but the rope was too short. Daddy didn't have the heart to continue with his dog business after that fatal experience.
The ranch didn't have drinkable water, so we returned to town. The former rental was still available, so we purchased the house and moved back in. About two months later, Taffy returned home. I missed her and I knew she obviously missed me by the way she smiled and wagged her tail.
In 1980, my husband read an ad in the paper advertising smooth collie pups for sale. Anyone who watched the movie, Lassie, knows how pretty and smart a collie is. But Craig was not familiar with the look of a smooth hair collie. As a puppy, her coat was short, but we assumed the hair would grow. It didn't. Visualize a beautiful, long-haired collie, then shave it. Not a pretty sight! We bought the pup from a down-to-earth family. They named her Spinach. An odd name, but we couldn't imagine a better one. She became a great family dog and we called her Spin for short.
Other dogs came and went at our home, but I hope these few stories took you back to your childhood or awakened memories of your best friend.
 Happy Birthday, cousin Carolyn !


Saturday, May 17, 2014

Storms of Life

He calmed the storm to a whisper and stilled the waves.”
Psalm 107:29 NLT

My world is stormy today. Resting comfortably in my library, I own a front row seat to follow where the wind moves and shakes. Birch and cedar trees are not gently swaying, but whipping and bowing vigorously. Their branches bounce one way, then bend back the other direction. I love the drama of a storm, but not the trauma it might create.
Remember your free entertainment as you watched a wild storm on the beach? The higher the waves the more oohs and aahs the scene received from you watching safely from your motel window.
The same is true with my view today. I want to see more action, more excitement but, “Lord, please no broken branches or a power outage.”
The calm before the storm is not as memorable as the calm afterwards. Twenty minutes later, my scene has changed. Buckets of pouring rain now hang empty, our trees stand tall and still, and azure sky briefly shows between fast-moving, stratocumulus clouds.
We all encounter storms in our lives. Trials appear as a breeze while other experiences act like a Midwest tornado. Whatever the velocity of the wind or the degree of trouble we face, a calm and peaceful future is promised sooner or later. Dark clouds may hide blue sky, troubles in our lives may block our view of deliverance, but the promise remains.
Our King is still our King. Jesus promised to never forsake us. He proved His faithfulness to His Father God's will, even though His experiences during His final hours looked desperate and defeated.
Jesus understood how His last chapter on earth would end and so do we. In Victory!

                   “For the Lord is good. His unfailing love continues forever,
                          and his faithfulness continues to each generation.”
                                                    Psalm 100:5 NLT

Happy Birthday, Rhoda
Happy 90th Birthday, Carolyn
Happy Birthday, Trudy
Happy Birthday, Leela

Happy 50th Anniversary, David & Violet
Happy 29th Anniversary, Patty & Mo