Friday, August 30, 2013

Around the compound . . .

. . . Maggie (the dog) has begun to exhibit signs of innate breeding--herding chickens and protecting her people.
. . . Thinning of 16th Section Land is going on right next to us.  In fact machinery noises make the work sound as if it's right on our driveway.
. . . School is in full swing. Sarah has chair tryouts in band today; Petal High plays its second football game tonight; Drew is fascinated by some rubberband device and from experience I've warned him that school officials don't look kindly at such; even the 2nd grader and kindergarner have homework.
. . . We are still stalking the raccoon and it is still outsmarting us.  Tommy has a trap on his back porch that he baits almost nightly.  Said raccoon enjoys the bait, sometimes springs the trap, but is never caught.
. . . I feel more like myself this week than I have in several months, enjoying extra energy and eagerly anticipating finishing two more rounds of chemo. 

On Facebook yesterday I posted about the "shrimp run" Tommy made to the coast.  Today I am happy to add that all the shrimp is in the freezer, a little over a gallon of shrimp stock was made from the heads, oysters are ready and waiting for grilling, as is the snapper.  I cooked pot roast and vegetables for dinner last night and was rewarded with: "Mom, you haven't forgotten how to cook."  I have missed the kitchen! 

My knitting needles have been busy working on various projects and I feel a sense of accomplishment that I have done those things I hate like weaving in loose ends, sewing on buttons, etc.  One recent project is a shrug I'm making for Sarah and as I've knit I've thought of how following the pattern illustrates following God's pattern for living.  It seems as if modern day Christians stress freedom we have in Christ, sometimes to the exclusion of that which God requires of us --otherwise know as the Law.  In reality, there needs to be a balance.  Paul wrote in Galatians about Christ setting us free from the Law, but he never said that we are to ignore it.  Law was given to teach God's people how to live as His children and how to live in community with others.  It was to be kept perfectly.  When it wasn't, God was displeased and there were consequences.  Thus came about the elaborate, exact sacrificial system of the Old Testament. I'm grateful we live because of God's grace and the righteousness of Christ.  

Back to "balance."  The Ten Commandments continue to be a pattern for living.  They are not just some document to be posted in public places and to be upset about when opposition arises.  They are to be studied and observed as our pattern for knowing what God requires of us and how we are to live with others ( a reminder from the Children's Catechism).  Sarah's shrug is made of one four row pattern that repeats itself until the desired length is reached.  At first I had the pattern right next to me as I knit to keep me on track, but soon it was firmly established in my head and I need not keep referring to it.  If I made a mistake, the entire pattern was thrown off and I'd have to rip out and correct--consequences of not following the pattern.  As I learned the pattern by knitting it over and over, I realized counting stitches was no longer necessary.  The stitches were clear and I could see what needed to be done next.  God's law, or pattern, is given for our instruction.  As we thank God for the sacrifice of His Son so that we may have freedom to live, may we also ask for God's guidiance in understanding the Law and how we are to follow it today.

Pastor Margaret 

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