Wednesday, July 6

New Stuff

The Fireflies Are Back!
I'd like to take a moment to say, is there anything more relaxing than a warm summer dusk and watching the fireflies talk to each other in your backyard?  I contend not!  It seems to me that fireflies have been more scarce this year, but last night as I was reeling in the hose, they were out in full force.  I sat down in a patio chair and just enjoyed watching them blink to each other for quite a's just fascinating to me that they can do that.  To me, seeing the fireflies is a quintessential summer staple.  I'm not a bug person, but I do like the fireflies and their blinking little behinds!  For some interesting facts on fireflies, check out this link.

What Else Is New?
Well, I'm proud to say that we have had several projects finally completed on our house!  Our roof has been replace and looks great, our living room has been repainted and rearranged and looks great, and our new couch has been delivered and looks great.  The roof took about a day and a half, and we did have an Amish crew do the work.  Overall, they did a great job.  We decided to go with a two-tone gray shingle instead of staying with the reddish-brown shingles that were there when we bought the house, and it's a nice change.  They also re-roofed our shed out back. Over the Independence Day long weekend, my husband and I were able to repaint the living room and hallway with some deeply-discounted Sherwin-Williams paint (we bought $45 a gallon paint for $25 a gallon!) and we went back to the basics--a creamy off-white color, which looks great with the leather couch and large wall map picture from Hobby Lobby (which we purchased on clearance).  Except for the couch, it was a pretty inexpensive change, and we couldn't be happier!

New Boss
We're also going through a transition at work.  The former pastor was reappointed to a new church, and the new pastor started Friday.  I don't work on Fridays, and Monday was a holiday, so I didn't actually work with him until Tuesday...except I barely saw him.  I know what it's like to be the new person at a job--I've been that many times.  I don't think, though, that I've ever had to experience a new boss!  This will be a new experience for me, and a time of transition for everyone.  My husband has patiently reminded me a few times that I don't really work for my new boss...that I work for Him, and that God's in control of the situation.  As a person who seems to increasingly dislike changes and disruptions in my daily routine, it's difficult to handle some of the recent changes with any sort of grace.  I don't have a choice, though, and it will all work out one way or another.  I just need to continue to put my trust in Christ.

New Creative Idea
As you might have noticed, I've been pushing hard for my new website, The Sunflower Tree, to take off.  I would really like to see this become a real business for me, but I can't do it without your help.  So I ask you to take a moment, visit the site and "like" it on Facebook.  Even more helpful would be to share it on your Facebook page!  The more people that know about it, the better the chance that I'll start getting some orders.  I'm constantly creating new ideas, and I post them as quickly as I can while working around my job and housework and so on.  I'd like to say thanks again to those of you who have shared my site--I'm very grateful!

It seems as though there are a lot of changes and new things in our life lately.  There are sayings about trials and changes: "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger", "(fill in the blank) builds character", and so on.  I do believe, as many do, that God uses trials (big and small) to transform us into the creations He meant for us to be.  We need to be flexible and have faith that what He allows is for our good and His perfect will.  Romans 12:2 says, "Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will".  2 Cor 5:17 says, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!", and Isa. 43:18-19 says, “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.  See, I am doing a new thing!  Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?  I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland."  Perhaps the trials that God allows us to experience are His way of making a stream in the wasteland of our lives.  When we thirst for Him and His mercy, He will not only nourish us, but he will change us and cause us to grow in Him!

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