December 15

Preschool music…

I teach music to our preschoolers once a week.  Now is the time for our annual Christmas program.  Long ago when the preschool was much bigger and we had a volunteer whose specialty was music, we had a big program in the church and each class, threes and fours, sang independently of the other class.

Now our preschool is smaller (we used to have the only preschool and now there are others) and our classes are smaller.

Soooooooo…..I am combining the two classes and the only practice we are having together is right before we do the program.  Maybe I am crazy and it will flop, but time will definitely tell in this case.

The practice was great and the program turned out really well.  Some of the kids were a little stunned to see all the people, but once they got past that, they really sang out well.  Even the jumpy ones were great and didn’t jump too much.

All of the parents and other guests commented on how much they enjoyed it.  The program was short and sweet, but just right.  I was happy with the outcome.

I know you can trust Jesus with everything.  I did all I could to make it work and then I just put it in Jesus’s hands and it was wonderful.  I had others comment prior to the program expressing concern, but I knew Jesus was in charge and I knew I could trust God for the answer.

Father, thank you for the help you give me daily.  Thanks for loving me so much.  I love you too.  Amen.

Proverbs 3:5

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December 14

Physical therapy….

I have had lots of physical therapy in the last few years, but I decided to go to the new physical therapist as I have discovered they all treat patients in a different way.

Today the PT gave me moist heat on my back in two places and it did feel quite good.  No one has ever used that on my back before and we discussed the benefits of a heating pad and my own electric blanket.  It is interesting to me to have this discussion of heat as the acupuncturist today was talking to me about penetrating heat and a specific mat that tries to give the patient a deeper heat.

I do know that I don’t like the cold as much as I used to when I first moved to Cordova and of course I know how important exercises are, but I think the real key is being consistent in doing them.  I start off with good intentions, but I tend to get derailed and it is primarily not planning enough time to get them done in the morning.  That is definitely what I need to work on and to make it a priority.

I guess it all boils down to putting my money where my mouth is so to speak.  I have thought a lot about priorities lately so I need to really make exercise a priority.

We all know how disciplined Jesus was about prayer and this reminds me that what I need is discipline.  I take time to pray a lot during the day.  Now I need to take time for exercise.

Father, you know me better than I will ever know myself.  You know I need the discipline necessary to put these exercises to work.  Help me to develop that discipline and make them a priority in my life.  Amen.

Hebrews 12:11

December 13

Naughty or nice….

I had the funniest experience in Sunday School this week.  One little girl was not minding and when I asked her to sit down another kid said in a very serious voice, “You’re on the naughty list now.”  Another little kid piped up and said, “I’m on the nice list.”  The little girl answered, “How do you know?” The oldest boy in the class said in an equally serious voice, “Trust me.  Santa knows.”

I wanted to laugh, but I tried to be serious.  There was no more talk about Santa and we went on with the lesson about Joseph, Mary and Jesus.  Later we talked about the real Saint Nicholas and about gifts and we especially discussed how they could give good gifts all year long.  Hopefully, they are listening as they mentioned several I have been trying to instill I them, like saying Thank You, smiling, obeying without having to have a lot of reminders.

I love Christmas and I love teaching Sunday School and I want all the kids in my class to know Jesus personally.  This is my greatest wish and the gift I would love to receive.  I keep working on my goal and praying for the kids in all of my encounters with them.

Father, I love you so much and I want all of the children I interact with at the church, the Christian Center and school to come to know Jesus as their savior.  Help me show them the way.  Amen.

Matthew 1:18-25

December 12

Friends…

I can never be too thankful for friends.  Yesterday my car wouldn’t start.  This is not a new occurrence, but when it totally quit making any noise I feared it was the battery.  I got a ride to the church so I would be on time for Good News Kids, but I still needed to deal with the car.

I tried calling someone, but they were not available so I called another friend.  He had just returned from a hunting-trapping trip and I really didn’t want to bother him, but the pastor encouraged me to call him so I did.

He came and got the key and returned in about an hour with a big smile on his face.  He tested the battery and it was fine, just needed a charge.  Then after he charged it he let it run for about an hour and later in the evening after our kids’ activity was completed, I got a ride to my car and it started right up.  I was so thankful.  It started up this morning too.

I have been told that the computer in new cars means that they need to be driven more and my friend who charged it told me essentially the same thing.  I need to drive around more which is something I never really do.

But even more than the fact that it is running, the best thing is that I did have someone to call and he was more than willing to  sort out the problem and then see to it that it continued to run.  I am so thankful for dear friends like this who come to my aid when I really need them.  I can’t even imagine what I would do without friends to call upon when I really need help.

I want to be that kind of friend for others too.  I want to be available when others need help.  Obviously I can’t give car help, but there are many other kinds of help that I can give and I hope others know that I am available for them and willing to help them whenever the need arises

Father, thank you for friends and for the help they give me so willingly, even when it is not convenient for them. Amen.

Proverbs 18:24

December 11

December 11

Wind…

According to reports the wind blew at least 70mph last night and gusted to between 100 and 110.  This reminds me of the wind in 2001 when the highs were 170mph and the walls of the Laundromat next to the church simply crumbled and fell down.

Last night’s wind ended up with trees down and across homes, the town Christmas tree breaking in half and falling down, windows being blown out of vehicles and metal being blown off of roofs.  Thankfully my roof is holding well, but my garage roof which is flat is leaking in lots of new spots.

We are so far removed from hurricanes and other natural disasters, that when it does blow hard, people tend to be stunned.  I think it is a great reminder of the difficulties others go through on a much more regular basis and it reminds me of God’s wonderful watchcare over us.

Father, thank you for taking care of us and keeping us safe.  Amen.

Psalm 4:8

December 10

Making progress…

I finished the ballerina bunny today thanks to help from my friend and advice from another friend.  Well, I guess I should say the bunny is almost finished.  My oldest granddaughter is going to help me place the ribbons on the ballet shoes once I get to Memphis.  Then she will truly be finished and ready for wrapping.

I learned a lot about making amagurumi from this project and I think that experience will make it easier for me to make the sloth.  I have looked on the Internet and it is hard to believe how many different patterns for small animals are available.  Some are free and some cost money, but they are widely available and most have a lot of pictures which is really helpful.

While experience is definitely a great teacher, I don’t think I would want to get into making animals full time.  I like bigger projects better, but the small ones have definite appeal too.

The key is keeping at it.  If you determine to get a certain amount, even time-wise, accomplished, you can definitely proceed toward your goal.  For me, it would be easy to just read and not knit, but once I began to limit my reading time, I began to make a lot more progress.

It’s all in deciding what you want to do.

Father, thank you for helping me develop discipline and seeing the fruits of my labors.  I love you.  Amen.

Hebrews 12:11

December 9

Advent Fair….

I am so thankful for helpers.  I had a friend help me set up yesterday and today I had several teens who came to help the younger kids with their crafts and with decorating cookies.  They were also great at helping clean up.  All of this help was a great blessing. With 50 people in attendance having helpers was wonderful.

The Advent Fair is a lot of fun and is gaining in popularity in the community.  We have lots of crafts for kids to make, sticker fun for the younger kids and Christmas cookies to decorate.

I get some of the crafts from Oriental Trading, but I wish I could try them out before I buy them.  Again this year I got a craft that was really difficult to complete and the parents had to help a lot.  One dad helped several kids in addition to his own and we really needed his help.  I often wonder if the creators of these crafts actually make one before it is mass produced.  They might realize how difficult they are to complete.

I need to examine them more closely to see if I can determine the degree of difficulty before I buy them.  Another thing that would help would be a listing such as beginner, intermediate, advanced.  It seems as though all kids want to complete all crafts so it is hard to talk them out of a specific one.

The great thing is that Jesus provides the help we need to make the Fair successful and for that I am very thankful.

Father, you give me all I need and I am so thankful for that.  I can’t do it without you.  Amen.

Isaiah 41:10