Saturday, November 28, 2009

A Busy Week

What a busy week!

Last Saturday, I threw a surprise going away party for Mom and Dad. I thought surely that Mom and Dad were suspecting something, but no, they were pretty surprised when everyone showed up for lunch. :) Our little house was pretty full (and our little street, with all the cars).

Of course Mom and Sam had to get out the violins.

We had lots of little ones running around--so sweet to see them all playing together. This is little Carl. Isn't he cute?

Lots of picture taking. Sam took a lot of pictures which I assume he will be posting to his blog eventually (right, Sam?)

And by the end of it all, Noah was so tired, he just passed out on the couch. Yes, that's a pacifier in his mouth.

Mom has a blog now, did you know that? Check it Here's where she describes how she felt about the surprise party.

You know, I can't remember what all we did Monday through Wednesday. We've been so busy, it's all a jumble in my memory. I think we did some more visiting/being visited, lots of packing, the usual cooking and housework, etc.

Thursday morning, Mom and Dad loaded up their things and headed to the airport. They flew to London, where they are staying at the FP manse for the weekend. Dad is giving a presentation at TBS on Monday; then on Tuesday, Mom and Dad are back on an airplane and headed to Israel.

After saying goodbye to Mom and Dad, I threw together a couple of pecan pies and we headed over to the manse for Thanksgiving dinner. We had lots of good food, of course, and good company. The young folk were playing croquet and soccer on the lawn; Elijah and Noah played with the other little ones. I held babies and visited.

When we got home, Jesh and I moved all the furniture around. Okay, not all the furniture, but a lot of it. The boys and I now occupy what used to be Mom and Dad's room, and Jeshurun has taken over what used to be my room.

Friday I spent the whole day trying to get things sorted out. I have to find places for all of Mom and Dad's things before I can organize my own. Friday evening we went to my sister's place for dinner. Tonight I'm cooking a turkey and we're having guests over to help us eat it. So I suppose I should get back to work. :)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A Wise Letter

My mom recently got this letter from her brother. She shared it with me and I liked it so much, that I asked permission to share it with y'all (didn't I say that like a true Texan? Aren't y'all proud?)

My point in posting this is not to start a debate over any of the individual points in this letter. I'm not sure that I agree with every point myself. But I really appreciate the general premise, summarized in the first paragraph.

So here it is, basically unedited (I fixed a typo):
EDIT: wow, didn't realize quite how long this would be, so I am abbreviating it slightly. Ellipses where the deleted portions were.

I have a theory that is hard to explain. It is that many times if not all the time in politics the right things happen for the wrong reasons and the wrong things for the right reasons, and that that happens on multiple levels - so that the right things are also the wrong things and the right reasons are also the wrong reasons.

Jimmy Carter was a good president because he didn't do much: the wrong reason but the right result.

Obama may let all the illegals become legal for free without responsibility for having violated the law. His reason may be compassion (the right reason on one level) but an offense of justice (the wrong reason) on another level -- but what may be the result? The illegals become citizens, claiming benefits (the wrong thing), paying taxes (the right thing), getting educated (the right thing) at our expense (the wrong thing), and eventually becoming "climatized" as true Americans (the right thing). The long term result may be the right thing, while intermediate results may be the wrong thing. Or it might play out a different way.

What about the war? Why are we at war? To protect our country against terrorism (the right reason) except maybe that's only a front for the true reason, which might be to protect private oil interests (the wrong reason). Even if it's for the aforementioned right reason, it might be the wrong thing - the wrong way to approach it. So we may be doing the wrong thing for the right reason. But what is the result? We improve the quality of life and slowly teach a stiff-necked people a little about freedom which they would never learn otherwise (the right thing) but this is also the wrong thing because to do so we must force our will upon them (the wrong reason) and expand our imperialism (the wrong reason). And the result, instead of being becoming more free (the right thing), the Iraqui people become instead only more incensed against their imperialist aggressors (the wrong thing), which is also the right thing because American imperialism should not be allowed to go unchecked. Yet despite the wrong result of creating enemies and slowly alienating the world against us (the wrong thing) the purposes of God are furthered because it begins to breaks the shackles of a Satanic religion (the right reason). It does this by introducing the decadent Western ways upon a religious and in many ways moral people (the Saudis, for example, complain that Western ways are corrupting their people), but these decadent Western ways also bring with them an appreciation and love for freedom - the wrong reasons producing the right results, and so in a back-handed way our American imperialism is just what they need and they benefit even if we have no right to force them.


Even people's reasons are both right and wrong on different levels. Democrats often do things out of compassion (the right reason) while failing to understand the principles of self reliance and responsibility. While Republicans, upholding these principles (supposedly), sometimes go too far.

The last Republican convention I watched (2004) had all the right reasons, but few of the expressed right reasons actually made it beyond the doors of the convention hall, and they did all the wrong things.

It is noticed that some economic group is being short-changed and the desire is to fix it (the right reason), so a law is passed which gives that group a tax refund, which is right thing because it corrects the injustice, but the wrong thing because again it singles out one group for special treatment, creating a new injustice.


And what if our political decisions result in the weakening of American sovereignty? which any trueblooded John Bircher can tell you plenty about. This is certainly the wrong thing. Or is it? Perhaps in the justice of God a nation cannot be trusted and must be reduced whose people violate His laws and ignore and forget the principles of morality. Perhaps we are not worthy of the freedom we have and so some of it must be taken away from us and we must live under reduced liberty because that is all we are capable of abiding. So the destruction of America by scheming and wicked men may be the right thing for the wrong reasons. And yet through it all the other nations of the world are blessed. Yet they also become more and more sucked in to one world system ruled by a faceless nameless elite. Satan's kingdom thrives ... but only so that it will fall in the end and be taken over at the second coming ... and at this point I must end my speculation because it's more and more guessing and how shall I make sense of it all ... but at least I perceive that there are many levels to all developments, and the worst may yet be the best in some ways. As Charles Dickens said, in the days of the French revolution and the accompaning turning upside down of all the systems of men, "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times ..."

Monday, November 23, 2009

Meet My Family: Mercy!!

I bet you all thought I had forgotten. Here at last is part six, all about my lovely little sister, Mercy.

Mercy, despite the red hair, is a lovely sweet young lady. :) She has always had a mild and good-natured personality. In fact, she only remembers being spanked once during her childhood. (I, on the other hand...)

Mercy's life today revolves around her husband, Mark, her daughter, Olivia, and her stepson, Matthew. Mercy is also fond of her big, black, scary-looking German Shepherd, Luska, though Luska has taken a back seat since the arrival of Olivia.

Mercy is good with animals in general, actually. She worked as a pet groomer for five years or so before she got married. She raised and showed various animals at the county fair. And twice she won the "round robin" showmanship competition. That means she had to handle and demonstrate knowledge of the following animals: a horse, a steer, a dog, a pig, a sheep, a goat, a rabbit, and a chicken. We have owned all of those animals at one point or another, actually, except for a horse; but Mercy took horseback riding lessons for a couple of years, so that part was easy for her too. :)

Mercy has an artistic eye. She is quite talented with graphic design and photography, and can draw quite well too. She also has nice taste in fashion. :)

Last but not least, Mercy keeps a nice blog. So if you want to keep up with her, check it out. :)

Monday, November 16, 2009

Psalm singing at its best. :)

Someone sent my Dad the link to this video of Gaelic Psalm singing.

This is fantastic psalm singing, set to some familiar tunes that we use in our services here (Free Presbyterian Church of Scotland, Santa Fe). Now if only we had better acoustics in our church building...*sigh*

Friday, November 13, 2009

Dad and Mom are Israel

So no sooner do I arrive in Texas, than Mom and Dad decide to up and leave. :) Dad, as you probably know if you read my blog, works for the Trinitarian Bible Society; he is part of a translation team that is working on a new & improved version of the modern Hebrew New Testament (existing versions have some flaws). One of the members of the translation team is Rev. Goldby, a missionary of the Free Presbyterian Church, stationed in Israel. Well Mr. Goldby has recruited Dad to join him in Jerusalem, where Dad will be better able to assist with the translation project, and a few other projects as well.

So Dad and Mom are leaving on...Thanksgiving Day! That's right, less than two weeks from now, they'll be leaving the country. Mom has been busy winding up loose ends here in Texas, packing her things, shopping, and oh yes, learning Hebrew. Dad has been busy with his usual translation work, language study, online classes, selling off some unneeded books, and packing the most essential books (seven boxes of them) to ship to Israel. And of course both of them have been quite busy with lunch and dinner invitations, as everyone prepares to say goodbye.

A few people have asked, um, Sharon, what are you going to do now? Well, Mom and Dad have decided to keep their house in Texas, so the boys and I, and my brothers, will still have a place to stay. :) And moving will be much easier on Mom since all she has to do is pack what she and Dad need, and she can leave the rest for me to deal with. (I plan on having a big garage sale first thing--shhh don't tell her!)

Obviously, I am sad that my parents are leaving me, just as I've come home to them again. But I am also very excited for them as they get this awesome opportunity to live in another part of the world, and do some important work. And I'm excited about getting the master bedroom once they leave--with TWO closets! :) Hey, gotta look for the silver lining, right?