Saturday, May 26, 2007

Pine Cone Bird Feeders

I found the most awesome little bibles for the kids. They're by Sheila Walsh (of Women of Faith). Jack has been running around all day today saying "I'M A WARRIOR FOR GOD!". hehe - I think it's driving his dad crazy. We tried out the first story today and then the project it layed out for us - to help God take care of His creatures. We went up to the common area of our neighborhood which has a little forrest to walk through...pretty treacherous today ~ looks like no one has been in yet this Spring to spruce up the path. I'm really really hoping we didn't get into any poison oak. Anyway, we came home with zip...all the pine cones were teeny we get back in front of the house next to ours and there is a LOAD of nice size pine cones right on the street waiting for us. We smeared 'em with peanut butter and then covered them with birdseed. We've got three out for now to see if we can entice any birds to visit our birdbath. Our beloved cat, Dave, has made his home under a miniature Japanese Maple right by the birdbath. You don't see him at all when he's under there, which I imagine is how he likes it. I will be very sad if the birds get nice and fat on our feeders only to become catfood. The kids loved the project and Jack kept saying that he loves me for getting him his new bible but he wishes I would quit giving him time-outs. See...I can't win.

My prayer life is pretty non-existent. Most of my prayers are done at my desk when something reminds me of something/someone I wanted to pray for. I stop what I'm doing and pray - quick.
Then back to business. I still get up early in the morning and read my bible and other books and have my quiet time, but to really sit there and PRAY - it's just become so hard for me. I'm blocked. I'm VERY easily distracted. I gave up. I came across this story today about developing your prayer life by J. Sidlow Baxter that I found funny, frustratingly appropriate to me, and encouraging at the same time.

I found that there was an area of me that did not want to pray...(and) there was a part of me that did. The part that didn't was the emotions, and the part that did was the intellect and the will...

(So) I said to my will: "Will, are you ready for prayer?" And Will said, "Here I am, I'm ready." So I said, Come on, Will, we will go.

So Will and I set off to pray. But the minute we turned our footsteps to go and pray all my emotions began to talk: "We're not coming, we're not coming, we're not coming." And I said to Will, "Will, can you stick it?" And Will said, "Yes, if you can." So Will and I, we dragged off those wretched emotions and we went to pray, and stayed an hour in prayer.

If you had asked me afterwards, Did you have a good time, do you think I could have said yes? A good time? No, it was a fight all the way.

What I would have done without the companionship of Will, I don't know. In the middle of the most earnest interecessions I suddenly found one of the principal emotions way out on the golf course, playing golf. And I had to run to the golf course and say, "Come back."...It was exhausting, but we did it.

The next Morning came. I looked at my watch and it was time. I said to Willl, "Come on, Will, it's time for prayers." And all the emotions began to pull the other way and I said, "Will, can you stick it?" and Will said, "Yes, in fact I think I'm stronger after the struggle yesterday morning." So Will and I went in again.

The same thing happened. Rebellious, tumultuous, uncooperative emotions. If you had asked me, "Have you had a good time?" I would have had to tell you with tears, "No, the heavens were like brass. It was a job to concentrate. I had an awful time with the emotions."
This went on for about two-and-a-half weeks. But Will and I stuck it out. Then one morning during that third week I looked at my watch and I said, "Will, it's time for prayer. Are you ready?" And Will said, "Yes, I'm ready."

And just as we were going in I heard one of my chief emotions say to the others, "Come on, fellows, there's no use wearing ourselves out: they'll go on whatever we do."...

Suddenly one day (weeks later) while Will and I were pressing our case at the throne of the heavenly glory, one of the chief emotions shouted "Hallelujah!" and all the other emotions suddenly shouted, "Amen!" For the first time (all of me was involved) in the exercise of prayer.

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