Reformation/Thanksgiving season was lots of fun. William learned what pumpkins were. He kept calling them “balls” but he recognized them where ever we saw them, even in the picture of the nursery rhyme “Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Eater”. We didn’t have our traditional celebration on the actual Reformation Day, can’t remember why. However, a few days later we did have our traditional pumpkin stew and apple fritters. Mmm – good!!
I started potty training William in October. I think I have the exact date written down…somewhere. I must say that potty training is the one thing I will never, ever, ever miss—lots of prayer, lots of frustration, lots of asking forgiveness etc. William seemed to survive all the bumbling of his mother quite well and after the first week he all of sudden started going potty on the toilet when I put him there. He was far from trained, but after that first week there was no turning back. He continued to progress and we used less and less diapers. However, we did use more cleaning solution for the multiple accidents, so glad for hardwood floors. He has just turned 2 and he’s still not crossed the finish line but he’s inching closer.
This was an email I got from a friend. It was written by a pastor in Wales. I thought it was really good so I'm going to post it. Mostly so I can go back and read it.
Maintaining Spiritual Zeal
There is not one way to true spiritual fervour. There is no master key that opens every life to being fervent in Spirit. Let me give you many directives that are truly important, and some not so important (you must decide which is which for we are all different members of the body). How may this grace of true zeal be yours in greater abundance than it is at present? Thirty guidelines:
1. Don’t neglect asking God to make you more fervent in spirit every single day. 2.Go to bed on time and get up on time each morning so that you start unrushed. 3.Sit under the best ministry you can get each Sunday. If you can get better preaching elsewhere why stay here? Life is too short. 4.Hitch your wagon to a star. Our lives are creaking ol d wagons; our congregation is a groaning wagon, but there are stars to which we can be hitched. I am talking of Martin Luther, John Bunyan, George Whitefield, Jonathan Edwards, Robert Murray M’Cheyne, Charles Haddon Spurgeon, J. Gresham Machen, Martyn Lloyd-Jones. Read what they say; if they have recordings then listen to them. Learn of their lives and their battles. Makes them your role models – a number of men not one. Let their example and teaching help draw you through life. Hitch your wagon to them. 5.Unclutter your life. Our lives are all a pruning away what is inessential and a search for the simple things of the gospel. 6.Allow extra time to do things and to get to people and places. 7.Pace yourself. Spread out big changes and difficult projects over a period; don't lump the hard things all together. 8. Take one day at a time. 9.Separate your worries from your concerns. If a situation is a concern, think about it, and ask God what he would have you do and let go of the anxiety, and put your trust in him. Why worry about situations concerning which you can do nothing? Commit it to the Lord and get on with life. 10.Live within your budget; don’t use credit cards for ordinary purchases. 11.Have backups; an extra car key in a friend’s house, an extra house key buried in the garden. A rickety old laptop . . . even a typewriter for emergencies. 12.K.M.S. (Keep Mouth Shut). This can prevent an enormous amount of trouble. 13.Carry a Bible with you to read while waiting in line. 14.When we are ill, we are never quite as ill as we imagine we are. We always add on a proportion. Remember you are never as bad as you think you are. 15.Get enough rest, and eat sensible enjoyable food. One morning you don’t feel like reading the Scriptures. You don’t feel like working or praying. So you tend to say to yourself, 'Well I’m not feeli ng well today and I can’t do this.' No. You mustn’t say that, you must rouse yourself. Shake off dull sloth and joyful rise. 16.We all feel better if our minds are being exercised. Read more than the daily paper and novels. Do more than watch the TV. Think. Read non-fiction. The more you use your mind the better. 17.Get organized so that you use your time to maximal efficiency. It is amazing what you can do if you plan well. 18.Listen to CD’s while driving. That can redeem the time. 19.Write down thoughts and inspirations that have come to you or you’ll forget them. 20.Every day, find time to be alone. Once again, every day, find time to be alone. 21.When you are bowed down, then talk to God on the spot. Try to nip small problems in the bud. Don’t wait until later. 22.Make friends with as many godly people as you can. 23.Keep some little cards; inscribe new Scriptures on them; commit them to memory. 24.Remember that the shortest bridge between despair and hope is to say, 'The Lord Omnipotent is King.' 25.Keep smiling when you are tricked and criticised. 26.Take your work and studies seriously, but not yourself at all.
27.Develop a forgiving attitude (most Christians are doing the best they can). 28.Do everything for double usefulness. Bake two cakes or two quiches and take one to someone who is housebound. Write two letters to missionaries when you are in the rare writing mood.
29.Men and women, 'we must hurry.' That was the great word of William Chalmers Burns in Scotland as he thought of the shortness of the time. Buy up the opportunities of the week that lies ahead. It will never return. 30.Never resist an inclination to pray.
Paul the Apostle urges us to ensure that the energy of the Spirit is at work in us constantly with no hindrances preventing it. Resist the hindrances, remove the obstacles, and maintain the glow. You cannot work up the fire but you can remove the ashes and be stirring up the gift of God within you. We must not quench the Spirit. We must resist the drift to becoming lukewarm. That is not an option. The Lord will spew us out of his mouth if we do not become fervent in spirit. We must recapture every day our first love.
One of the quirky things about our adorable son has been the number and type of things that scare him. I can’t even begin to list them all. Anything from loud noises, not odd you may say, to barking dogs that can barely be heard because he’s inside and they are outside. A tomato vine, the toys they purposefully make to crinkle when baby grasp them in his hand…Well, like I said, I cannot even begin to list all the things.
However, just recently he has begun to conquer his fear much to the delight of not only his parents but also himself. Up till now he has been absolutely terrified of the vacuum. I could never vacuum when he was awake because he would just become unglued. But he was not only afraid of the vacuum when it was on. He was afraid to be anywhere around the vacuum cleaner. Once I had it in a bedroom that he had to crawl by. Well he stopped dead in his tracks and started sobbing. I couldn’t figure what in the world was wrong with him until I saw the vacuum. So I closed the bedroom door. Nothing doing! He still wouldn’t go anywhere near that door. So I had to pick him up and carry him to another part of the house. When we stayed with my mom and dad, mom had her vacuum in a room we had to pass frequently. Every time we walked by it he would put out his arm and jabber something. I think he was saying, “That’s the vacuum!! Hurry we have to get past it before it eats us up.”
Last month there was a breakthrough. The vacuum was in my bedroom waiting for me to get around to vacuuming. William walked in there and saw the vacuum. But instead of heading in the other direction he stopped sat down and just stared at it. Not a short stare. This was a long stare. In fact he stayed there looking at it like he was watching a show on TV or something. He would sit and sit and sit. It was the funniest thing. I just left the vacuum there for several days and at different times during the day I’d find him sitting there looking at the vacuum, sucking his fingers and acting like he was looking at some type of breathtaking scenery. Then he started to touch it. He would go over to it and put his hand on it and look at me like he had just done something great. And I acted like he had of course. I mean, I still won’t even think of touching a roach. Not even a dead one. So I can understand a little boy’s delight in touching the scary vacuum. Go William. Now we have to get past men with bushy beards and…
I’m finally up to September!! We celebrated Labor Day with our friends from Grace church. This, by the way, is the church Russ and I are attending full time now. Anyway, it was a fun time. When we got there it was a cloudy, cool day, but about an hour or so into the picnic a slow steady rain began to fall and kept up for the rest of the time.
Bellow are several shots of the spectators at the annual Watermellon Seed Spitting Contest.
John is the official judge of the Spitting Contest which is held rain or shine.
Rita Schunck, the pastor's wife, and Geneva. Geneva is about 4 months
younger than William.
Autumn is about 2 1/2 years old and loves to play mommy with William.
William kept trying to catch rain drops on his tongue.
So far the books William really likes are: Mr. Brown can Moo, The Foot Book, We're Going on a Bear Hunt, and Brown Bear, Brown Bear. We read a few others but these are the ones that keep his attention. Of these his top favorites are The Foot Book and Mr. Brown can Moo. So the next two posts are going to feautre The Foot Book.