Sunday, November 29, 2020

Can we make cookies Lolli?

I love it when this girl comes over and we bake together.  We giggle, measure things, stir, sample and have such a sweet time.  

I'm trying to be extra careful with her little hands around the kitchenaid mixer.  I would tell her to make sure and keep her hands away.  Then, she put her hand on top of the mixer and said, "Like this Lolli?" And then I noticed that she was putting her hands exactly where I put them when I turn on the mixer.  I realized she was doing exactly what I was doing.

Since that day I've noticed she does that a lot.  If I stand a certain way, or move my hands a certain way, she imitates me.  They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.  I really am honored, but I got those same feelings that I had when my kiddos were this age.  It's almost a feeling of Watch-yourself-Kami-because-she-is-watching-and-copying-everything-you-do.  Remember those feelings?  Or have them now?  You realize the great responsibility you have when little ones want to be just like you.  It causes you to make sure you are being sweet, responding right, and doing things that you would want them to do.  It's a fearful thing because I want her to make good choices with her life and I wouldn't want to lead her astray.

1 Timothy 4:12 says, "be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity."

My prayer is to be a godly grandmother that would point Liberty, Freedom and the new baby to our precious Savior.  These girls really are watching!  


Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Here I raise mine Ebenezer


If you're anything like me, you may get to some of the words of the song "Come Thou Fount" and sort of skip over them.  Some are not exactly in the language of today and can be confusing. In fact, some remove some of the harder, more difficult meanings out of our hymns and rewrite them.  But,  that's what makes the older hymns so deep and rich in meaning.  I like they are not "fluff" and make you think.  It's true of that when you come to the words, "Here I raise mine Ebenezer."  What in the world does that mean?

In order to understand that phrase in the song, you must go back to the Bible.  I love that! In 1 Samuel 7:3 you find revival happening in Israel.  Samuel, the prophet, told them that it's time to turn back to God.  He told them that if they will put away their idols and false gods from them, and would prepare their hearts to serve the Lord and Him only, that He would deliver them from their enemy, the Philistines.  The people took his words to heart.  They forsook their idols and false gods.  They chose to serve the Lord, and Him only.  Then, they confessed their sin and got right with God.  What a time of revival!

But, then....their enemy heard about it.  They heard that the children of Israel had gathered together and were ready to stand up and fight. So, the Philistines decided to go up against them.  And do you know what happened to the children of Israel?  Their response reminds me a lot of what our response as christians can be when opposition comes: Fear.  They were afraid.  But, what they did with their fear makes all the difference in the world!  They chose to go to the prophet and ask him to pray.  They knew they would need to get a hold of God and have His help!  

And that's exactly what God did.  He helped them!  He heard the prayer of Samuel and fought for them!  After this great victory Samuel took a stone and called it Ebenezer. He knew that we are all so prone to forget and wanted to have a memorial to commemorate and what God had done.  I Samuel 7: 12 says, "and called the name of it Ebenezer, saying, Hitherto hath the LORD helped us."  

So, the writer included the words in "Come thou Fount"
Here I raise mine Ebenezer, Here there by thy great help I come

He truly is our help.  As christians, we will have time of difficulty.  Sometimes we have it in our minds that when we get our hearts right and choose to only serve the Lord, that trials will go away.  God doesn't promise that.  But, He does promise to be our help.  He wants us to never forget that He's there ready with outstretched arms every step of the way.  "Here I raise mine Ebenezer" is like raising the white flag of surrender to God and recognizing that you can't live without Him. I know I can't.  So thankful for a Savior that wants to be my help and walk with me each step of the way!

Monday, November 23, 2020

My husband's interview

 I am so proud of Joshua's podcast, Sandy Creek Stirrings, and how it is growing.  He is gaining more listeners and his content is inspiring, encouraging and informative.  His Baptist History series alone is like taking a college class.  It's amazing!  He also covers apologetics topics such as TV, Music, Alcohol, Tithing, and Finances.  It really is a wonderful resource.

One of the things he wanted to incorporate was to interview "seasoned men of God."  (as he put itj ;o))  Last month he interviewed Dr. Scott Caudill and it was so good!  This month he interviewed my husband.  I have to say, they both did a great job and I am so proud of them both!  So, if you get a chance, give it a listen.  I know you will be blessed!

Thursday, November 19, 2020

What we did during Covid

I praise the Lord that our battle with Covid was pretty mild.  Brenna and I had it the worst with sore throat, coughing, losing taste and smell and lots of body aches.  Oh, and I did I mention fatigue?  We were exhausted!!  The first few days we slept off and on all day.  The couch was our friend.  And we rested as much as we could.  After that first week we were still pretty weak.  We would do something small and then get so tired.  So, we had to pace ourselves.  We were bored of being bored, but didn't feel like doing a thing.  It was a strange feeling.  But, by the second week we were ready to do a little more, then a little more.  A few others in our family had some body aches and sore throats, but they weren't too bad.

We played a couple of board games.  Not as much as we normally do.  Our brains weren't ready for that much!  Haha! But, we did play a few.

We read a ton!

Patrick and Silas escaped into the woods by our house.  Silas was able to get his first buck!  Yay for him!

A couple of times I got a small burst of energy and did some cutting out of my next project.  Wish I would've felt like sewing, but didn't quite make it there.

Sick or not, Patrick and Josh were faithful to keep livestream going during church days.  We kept it at home to be sure and quarantine. These guys are amazing!  What people didn't see on the other side of the camera was the rest of us in our jammies with cuddly blankets on the couch while they preached.  They did a great job!

Brenna was able to fit in a quick violin lesson to Callie.  My sister, Taylin, gave Callie her violin and Callie is so excited!  She hopes to be able to play in church one day soon!

Micah was able to have his turn in the woods, too!

Then, about a week and half in, my taste started to return slightly.  I sat down to dinner and looked at my plate and almost cried.  It looked like a feast fit for a queen that was hungry and I was so excited!

We were starting to feel some cabin fever and decided to drive and check on a deer stand at a friend's property.  It was nice to get out, it had been 12 days since I had left the property (other than to get tested)

I brought along my soft, snuggly blanket and a nice hot tea for the journey.  Well, it felt like a journey.

Callie even spotted a bald eagle!  That just made our day!

 It's been a long two weeks, but praise the Lord we are on the other side of this thing and feeling just about completely back to normal!  Thank you for those that have prayed for us!

Monday, November 16, 2020

Eating with Covid

I know I've said it many times before, but our church family is amazing!  They have been so good to us over the past couple weeks.  When they heard we were sick, they started making sweet deliveries to our front porch.  There were flowers and goodies.  There were texts and phone calls and cards....they really are so good to us!

One of my favorite restaurants is a place about 30 minutes from here called Aikens.  Everything I've ever ordered has been amazing.  But, my favorite thing is their hush puppies with ranch.  Oh my goodness it's amazing!  A sweet family dropped off a huge order of their hush puppies with lots of ranch. It was so sweet!

The snickerdoodles were sooo yummy and they were filled with chocolate.  Soo good!

We had fried chicken, ice cream, and candy with notes.  So thoughtful!

More home baked goodies!  There was wedding cookies and peanut butter cookies!

We had a 23 pound butterball turkey, too.  I was worried about not being able to get to the store in time for a big turkey.  Now I have a great one! Just in time!!

Homemade lasagna was also made for us.  So delicious!

Honeybuns, croissants, and Aresano bread...I think it's my new favorite!

Fresh corn and it was so sweet! And trash bags.  Needed those!

 Milk, bread, chocolate syrup and lots of needed essentials.

We are so blessed and healing up!  

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Prone to wander?

 Have you had a chance to read through the words of  Come Thou Fount Of Every Blessing? There is so much in this hymn that causes me to stop and think about its meaning.  But, the story behind this hymn is quite unusual.  

Robert Robinson did not having it easy growing up.  His father died when he was 8 years old.  His mother remarried to a man Robert's grandfather did not like.  There was much dissension and difficulty, and eventually when his stepfather died, Robert was tasked with caring for his widowed mother. 

During his young adult years, Robert saw his need of the Lord and accepted Him as his Saviour.  Even though, by many standards, he was not considered an educated man, he was a man that studied hardily.  He later became Pastor of a Baptist Church and faithfully served many years.  While there he wrote a couple of hymns, one being Come Thou Fount Of Every Blessing

 It is here where the story gets somewhat blurred and not everyone agrees on what happened in Robert Robinson's life.  Many say that he strayed from the Lord and that his faith wavered.  Remember the last verse?  Prone to wander, Lord I feel it.  Prone to leave the God I love.  Many say that is exactly what he did as he wandered from the Lord. 

While riding on a stagecoach one day, a young lady began singing the now popular song, Come Thou Fount Of Every Blessing, not realizing she was with the author himself.  When she finished singing she asked Robert what he thought of the hymn.  It is said that his response was, "Madam, I am the poor unhappy man who composed that hymn, many years ago, and I would give a thousand worlds, if I had them, to enjoy the feelings I had then."  What a sad response.  And a response that need not be.  That is one of the wonderful things about our Saviour.  He takes us right where we are.  He dusts us off, picks us up, and wants to use us again.  He is ready to forgive us and cleanse us.  Robert was only a prayer away from having that joy back again!

It is sad that Robert Robinson wandered.  Did he ever return to the Lord?  Or did he die a sad man, wishing he was living his life for the God?  We do not know.  But, I know that the words of the song are true.  We are prone to wander.  We are prone to leave the God we love.  That's why we must be diligent to guard our hearts.  We must be intentional about spending our minutes wisely.  Life is fleeting and on September 27, 1735, Robert Robinson entered into eternity.  Did he ever get things right?  We know that because he is saved he is now with Jesus.  Nothing could ever take away that gift of eternal life from him, not even his wandering.  But, did he spend his last years with the Lord and in sweet fellowship with him?  Let this be an encouragement to us to stay diligent and intentional.  Finish Well!

Monday, November 9, 2020

River Rise State Park

(This is from a couple weeks ago. Quarantine is perfect time to get caught up on posts!)

We had quite an adventure checking out River Rise State Park.   It's been a while since we've crossed a state park off of our list.  What's really strange is that this one is the closest one to our house and we have never visited it!  

We decided to bring a picnic lunch to start off the afternoon.  It was a gorgeous day of about 75*.  Absolutely perfect!

There aren't a whole lot of amenities at this park.  It's known for a park with lots of trails and a great place to bring horses to go on the horse trails.  Maybe one day we can do that.  It's also the place where the Santa Fe River surfaces after going underground for a bit.  Pretty cool!

So we started off on the trail.  It's quite long, so we took a pic of the map posted at the beginning of the trail and decided to do the smaller loop.

The cut off for the smaller loop didn't look travelled very well.  And after a while it was obvious it hadn't been used much in  quite a while!

We saw lots of tracks along the way.

And saw lots of trees that had fallen over the path.

After a while we weren't really sure we were even on the path anymore.

Then, we noticed them....tons of chiggers all on my Micah.  And on my Silas.  And on my Callie.  We decided we just needed to be done, find the right path, and get home and shower!  Callie and Silas stopped to take off more chiggers while Micah, Beth and I went on ahead.  Then, we heard a very loud, scary scream from my Callie....

...and my Silas holler, "Snake!!"  My Callie was about 3 feet from a rattle snake.  Oh my goodness.  We hurried over and helped her calmly back up.  She was so brave, but boy were tears flowing as she tried not to move suddenly.  Beth was awesome and is always a calm head in the bunch.  Praise the Lord for His protection!!

We finally found another marker saying that we were on the path.  Our little hike turned into quite an adventure.  We were quite thrilled to see our car and head home and shower.  Not so sure we will be back to this park.  Defintely more of a horse trail kind of park.  

So thankful for the beautiful weather, for finding our way back on the path, and for the Lord's safety!


Sunday, November 8, 2020

Lavendar, Mauve and Mint

Several weeks ago we celebrated a very special birthday for a special teen girl at our church.  Precious is what she is to us!  I talked to her Mom and found out her favorite colors are lavendar, mint and mauve.  And what do you know, I just happened to have those colors of fabrics in my stash!

It felt so good to start creating again!  It was so easy to sew the half square triangles.  I like how it turned out scrappy with a little semblence of a pattern.  

And now that we're in quarantine, and starting to get a little energy back, I feel the need to start sewing again!  Hopefully more projects are on the way!


Friday, November 6, 2020

Adding Covid to 2020

What a year. What a year.  I know it's been said over and over.   But, it's true.  

  We knew eventually we would experience Covid firsthand.  With a virus that's contagious, we just figured it would eventually make it's way to the Gimenez Family.  Whelp, it has!

Brenna started feeling bad first.  Couging, aches, and just overall not feeling well.  Then, it was Micah.  Before bed he started crying that he was hurting all over and he had a fever of 100*.  He woke up the next morning feeling great and is completely back to normal.  I woke up not feeling well.  Same as Brenna with aches, sore throat and coughing.  No fever for either of us, though.  Then, she lost her sense of smell and taste. 

We decided to be cautious, especially for our church family, to get tested.  It came back positive for Covid.  We were surprised, but not surprised.  We were definitely disappointed because this means going back online for our services and having to cancel a couple of events on the calendar.  But, we know without a doubt that God is in control and has his hand on us and on our church family!

 So thankful for the sweet door step deliveries already of flowers, danishes, pie and lots of goodies.  We are in good hands!

For now we are doing okay and just feeling like we have a bad cold.  We are quarantining for 2 weeks. And then we will see how we are.  Prayers for our family would be appreciated!

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

They love their Preacher

I don't want to sound redundant in my blogging.  But, I have to say, VSIBC really is the most amazing church family.  They really do spoil us as the Pastor's family.  We know we are loved, which is something we don't take for granted.  They really are the best people ever!

This year, for Pastor Appreciation Day, they really surprised us.  Josh told us that for the Sunday evening service we weren't allowed to arrive early.  What?  We are always early!  When we pulled in the parking lot it was full.  And everyone was already seated.  If you have ever been to our church you know that we like to fellowship.  A lot.  It's funny that when my husband wants to start the service that it's usually so loud with people visiting and talking that it's hard to hear him. :o)

When Patrick and I walked in with our 5 children (the ones we still have at home) everyone stood up and cheered.  And I don't mean just a polite, conservative clap.  I mean hooting and hollering like we were in a stadium!  As we walked down the aisle people were shaking our hands and patting my husband on the back.  It just made me smile and giggle a little.  It was so sweet!

They sang our favorite hymns and then called my children to the front. They cheered and cheered for them and told them how thankful they are for our children's testimonies, faithfulness and love for the Lord. Then they gave each of them a gift card. This just made me cry to have them honored. They really deserve it. At times preacher's kids live in a fishbowl as they set the standard for other children in the church. They can really be crucial as to which way the culture of the church will go. To have them prayed for and honored did my heart (and theirs) so good.

Then they called me to the front and cheered some more, it was so sweet. They said things that made me cry and then gave me a gift card, too!

Then they called my husband to the front...there was more cheering, many more kind words and then told him that the church had voted to pay our mortgage for the next 2 months. What a blessing!! Christmas shopping here I come!!

Then my sweet daughter in law sang "I want to thank God for the man of God." That song always makes me cry. As she sang, each of the families came and hugged us and told us they loved us, shed a few tears with us and gave us a ton more gift cards and gifts. Thank you VSIBC for loving on us the way you do. We are truly living our dream life and we are so thankful for each of you! We feel so loved and so blessed. So many tears of joy!

 And what did I get with my giftcard?  Sooooo excited about that purchase! I'll post on it soon.

Monday, November 2, 2020

Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing ~ Hymn for November

 November.  What a lovely month.  If you're anything like our family, it is definitely one of our favorites of the year with so many wonderful events, family times, beautiful weather and colors....I could go on and on.

The hymn that I've chosen to focus on for this month is one that is rich with beautiful words.  It's thought provoking and it's a hymn you definitely need to go for a walk with.  I know that sounds strange, but let me encourage you to get out into God's beautiful creation.  Take a deep breath of that beautiful fall air, look at the gorgeous beauty of God's creation and sing through this song.  It's so full of praise and adoration and prayer; something we all need to focus on right now!

Come, Thou Fount of every blessing
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace
Streams of mercy, never ceasing
Call for songs of loudest praise
Teach me some melodious sonnet
Sung by flaming tongues above
Praise the mount, I'm fixed upon it
Mount of Thy redeeming love
Here I raise my Ebenezer
Here there by Thy great help I've come
And I hope, by Thy good pleasure
Safely to arrive at home
Jesus sought me when a stranger
Wandering from the fold of God
He, to rescue me from danger
Interposed His precious blood
Oh, that day when freed from sinning
I shall see Thy lovely face
Clothed then in the blood washed linen
How I'll sing Thy wondrous grace
Come, my Lord, no longer tarry
Take my ransomed soul away
Send Thine angels now to carry
Me to realms of endless day
Oh, to grace how great a debtor
Daily I'm constrained to be
Let that goodness like a fetter
Bind my wandering heart to Thee
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it
Prone to leave the God I love
Here's my heart, oh, take and seal it
Seal it for Thy courts above
The story behind the writing of this hymn is quite interesting and thought provoking, but I will save that for another post next week.  Here is a playlist if you would like to listen to this hymn.  
The verses I will be memorzing are all of Psalm 100.  My Mom will be so proud since this is her favorite!  I'm planning on having her quiz me on it. :o)
It's a month that it's almost natural to talk about being thankful.  But are we really?  Do we really praise Him or is it just something that is popular to talk about because of the month that we are in? I also plan to post on this thought this month.  
I'm looking forward to having this song in my heart along with Psalm 100.   Psalm 100:2 says, "Come before His presence with singing."  Have you done that lately?  Join me as I strive to sing unto the Lord because He really is worthy of all praise and adoration.  God is so good to me!