Monday, April 28, 2008

Out with the old....in with the new!

After years of waiting and praying, a dream came true today. 10 years ago, a partial dream came true as a baby grand piano replaced our 100+ year old upright. The baby grand itself was over 70 years old and owned by a professional musician before us, so we knew it's stay would be somewhat limited. 

These last 10 years it has been faithful, enduring the thousands of hours of practice by seven ambitious pianists. Throughout that time, it's average sound slowly, yet gradually turned into death shrieks. So much so, our piano tuner was hesitant to come out any longer to do repair work on it.

We prayed, we waited, we worked, we saved... Today that prayer was answered as a brand new studio Bohemia was delivered to our front door. This will be a lifetime piano for me, and I am SO happy! Having felt like I've had to put my piano playing aside for a few years due to the deterioration of our current instrument, I feel like my music has been given back to me. God truly does answer the desires of our heart!

Dismantling the old grand and prepping it for moving...

We were so blessed to have a whole crew of willing guys over to help load the monster onto a trailer!

Heave away! Stories say it was HEAVY!

Safely in the trailer, destined for it's new home...

This morning's long anticipated arrival finally came...



The long awaited unveiling...

Majestic, lyrical, sweet, responsive, lovely, simply a dream come true is all I can say. I am so happy!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

A Tidbit...

A dear friend introduced me to this poem this last week. It touched me deeply, and perhaps it will be an encouragement to some of you.

Too weak to pray?
Then sink into God's arms,
And lay your throbbing head upon His breast.
He compassed you around with hov'ring angels;
Secure with them about you. Learn to rest.
There is a time for striving, it is true,
But there's a time to trust He'll carry you.

Till next time! Life has been busy, busy, busy, but I've got some things swimming around in my head that I hope to have time to blog about soon. :-)

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

My sole desire

There burns a fire with sacred heat, white hot with holy flame,
And all who dare pass through it's blaze will not emerge the same.
Some as bronze and some as silver, some as gold, then with great skill
ALL are hammered by their sufferings on the anvil of His will.

I'm learning now to trust His touch, to crave the fire's embrace,
For though my past with sin was etched His mercies did erase.
Each time His purging cleanses deeper, I'm not sure that I'll survive,
Yet the strength in growing weaker keeps my hungry soul alive.

The refiner's fire has now become my sole desire.
Purged and cleansed and purified, that the Lord be glorified.
He is consuming my soul, refining me making me whole.
No matter what I may lose, I choose the refiner's fire.
-Steve Green

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Greenhouse Days

With Spring being especially blustery and long-lasting this year, it is a welcome relief to finally finish tromping over the crunchy piles of snow and frozen puddles in the early morning hours, and cross over the threshold into the steamy air of "the" greenhouse. This particular greenhouse long ago crept it's way into my heart. From the hours spent there filling dirt trays and spreading thousands and thousands of seeds over it's surface, to watching the seedlings take root and spring into cheering greenness, to sitting in it's doors threshing out a season's harvest, nearly all aspects of greenhouse work I absolutely love.  The ever present smell of dirt and seeds that greets me whenever I walk in is one I don't think I'll ever get tired of. 

The 2008 growing season has begun in earnest for my employer's family. I hardly like to call them that. "Boss" seems too cold and formal for such dear friends. Working for hours on end with Steve and Janelle Sykora and their two children have held some of the year's richest blessings for me. From the times of heart-to-heart sharing while transplanting thousands of seedlings, to the exuberant hours of singing our lungs out, to the ever present sparkling tease in *ahem* some that threatens to break us girls out in a tickling match or water fight, the hours of fellowship are such a blessing!

Then there are the quiet hours of solitude that I also treasure. Today was one of those days. Various activities kept the other's busy, and I found myself alone for several hours filling peat pots and planting 5,000 wild lupines.  As the early morning light started filtering in the domed house, gradually warming the interior with it's sunny rays, my heart soared heavenward. So many thoughts wanted to creep into the stillness, drowning out that simple quietness that I'm learning is so important to cultivate. 


In a family of nine, absolute, solitary silence in our home is rare. It takes effort to get alone and just let the Lord speak without a multitude of distractions. Granted, they are blessed distractions most of the time...I wouldn't trade the happy chatter of my family for anything! Yet, I also find myself craving and seeking out quiet places. The hours of greenhouse work makes that quest a lot easier, but even then, I find the busyness and chatter of my own heart needs to cease also. During those hours this morning, God brought a verse from Isaiah to my attention, and put into concrete thought what I had been feeling for a long time.

"...In returning and rest shall ye be saved; in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength..." Isaiah 30:15

Perhaps that's why work at Everwilde Farms is so precious to me. Granted it makes life busier when I am home, but opportunity for hours of quiet, restful thought and prayer while there are bountiful. Last year the Lord pressed some of the deepest life lessons upon my heart during those long intervals of greenhouse and field work. I am already finding the same true this year. It only presses more deeply upon my heart the need to constantly maintain a portion of every day to cultivate that quiet, waiting, resting heart upon Him.

I have no guarantee how long "greenhouse season" will last. I would like to think it would be a part of the rest of my life, but I know that's not very likely. I know I will always look back on these months with fondness, and hopefully, remember above all else the reason it was such a blessing to me.  
(Written two weeks ago)

Friday, April 04, 2008

A Quote Revisited

There's a little file on my laptop called 'quotes,' and it's contents are full of little treasures and gems I come across and store away for later reading. In reviewing it the other day, I ran across this timely reminder. I had read this one several months ago on a friend's blog, and it's a truth I never want to keep far from my heart. I'm learning that no matter what season of life I find myself in, life is full of lessons on waiting. The right perspective and heart focus is crucial during those times.

God often requires that you wait on Him. This is not because God cannot keep up with you or that He does not know what to do next. God is interested in a love relationship with you. Your waiting on Him develops your absolute dependence on Him. Your waiting on Him assures that you will act on HIS timing and not your own.

You may think of waiting on Him as a passive, inactive time. Waiting on the Lord is anything but inactive. While you wait on Him, you will be praying with a passion to know Him, His purposes, and His ways. You will be watching circumstances and asking God to interpret them by revealing to you His perspective.

While you wait, continue doing the last thing God told you to do. In waiting, you are shifting the responsibility of the outcome to God -- where it belongs. Waiting on Him is always worth the wait. His timing and His ways are always right. You must depend on HIM to guide you in His way and in His timing to accomplish His purpose. 

-Henry To. Blackaby 

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Abandonment

What is abandonment? It is forgetting your past; it is leaving the future in His hands; it is devoting the present fully and completely to your Lord.

Abandonment is being satisfied with the present moment, no matter what that moment contains. You are satisfied because you know that whatever that moment has, it contains - in that instant - God's eternal plan for you.

-Madame Guyon 
'Experiencing The Depths Of Jesus Christ'