Stumbling

In our pursuit for excellence, let’s never forget that we are already excellent. We are not starting from a place of failure, but rather from the exulted place from which our diligence and charitable natures has brought us thus far. Yes, we may stumble, and that stumble may make us feel low, but a stumble in itself does not make us lose ground. Rather the stumble reminds us of where we are on our journey. A stumble reminds us to take in our surroundings and reaffirm where we want to be and where we want to go.

During our journey, well-meaning people may only focus on where we need to go and minimize the importance of from where we have come. They will tell us not to dwell on the past and will tell us that we are weak for weeping. We should not wallow in frustration, disappointment, or pain, but we should always remember the struggle of our journey. It is when we remember from whence we came that we can truly celebrate where we are and where we are going.

Stumbling

 

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The Parable of the Old House

There was an old house that had once been beautiful and grand. It sat on a road with many other beautiful, grand homes, but over time it began to fall into disrepair until one day its windows were boarded up and it was abandoned. In order to hide its sad state from the others, the boards on the windows had been painted to look like windows; dark panes of painted wood trimmed in white had replaced the clear glass. To the many who drove past the old house barely sparing it a glance, the evidence of its downfall was easier to ignore once those painted boards had covered broken windows.

Eventually, the decay and disrepair reached a level that the city decided the house was an eyesore and a danger. It was decided that the once beautiful and grand house would need to go, to be torn down. Yet, just as all looked lost for the house, someone took a closer look and saw past the overgrown yard, the damaged roof, and the boarded up windows. With dedicated care and work the house was restored.

We are all in danger of becoming the house. Without maintenance and care, we can go from a place of beauty and love to a place where we board up our windows and fall into decay. The Lord’s mercy and love, His atonement for our sins can help save us. It is important that we remember this when we feel as if the storms of life are ripping at our exteriors and the wind and rain begins to seep into our souls.

The Lord admonishes us to learn of Him and to take His yoke upon us. He teaches us to be mindful of our brothers and sisters. He admonishes us to be mindful of those who have boarded up windows, those who may be falling into deep disrepair. We should be careful when driving through our communities to avoid condemning the houses we see that have been storm damaged or neglected.

by Jessie A. Hagen

The Parable of the Old House - sm

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Fiber Arts – It is Therapy

What other kind of therapy produces a final product in addition to providing health benefits?

What other therapy can be shared so readily with others without stigma or a doctor’s pre-activity approval?

So in a way, we are not only on the receiving end of therapeutic treatment but we are also becoming the therapist!

 

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Saith Me… Peace

We should seek peace in all things, but sometimes we must speak our minds if we want to be instruments of change.

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Saith Me… Truth and Compassion

Speaking the truth, particularly when the subject is a negative one, must be done with care. Life’s difficult lessons seldom need harsh reinforcement. When the truth is shared compassionately, there is a greater chance that a lesson will be learned rather than rejected out of self-protection and defense.

Those wise enough to both see the need to share the truth and share it compassionately are rare and are priceless beyond measure. For it takes great courage to be a person of truth and compassion in a world where the truth is used to harm and compassion is seen as weak.

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Daily Fiber… Addiction of a Healthy Kind

A discussion on the addictive nature of working with fiber, particularly in the spinning of fiber into yarn, led to the following observation on my part.

Addiction is the only way to truly describe it. It starts with an enabler, “Just give it a try. It won’t hurt. You will like it.” Then moves to where we are looking for suppliers, and then if allowable, we begin to process our own from start to finish. Yes, certainly an addiction.

There really is something wonderfully addictive about working with fiber, wool in particular. When the process begins with a fleece fresh from the sheep and ends with a sweater, one can’t help but feel connected not just to the world we live in today, but the world of yesterday. The feelings generated are hard to describe, but they are so rich and nuanced that indeed we beg for more.

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Pain Sucks, Life Doesn’t

Pain sucks, but life doesn’t. Whether it is physical or emotional, sometimes it is easy to forget that it is pain not life to which we want an end.

Chronic physical pain can lead to emotional pain and can be compounded by the pains of loss and loneliness. A bad day can turn into a bad week, then a bad month becomes a bad year. As with most creatures, the pain causes us to withdraw from those who seem unable to understand or assist. Caring people seem too busy or seem too happy to be bothered with the task of giving us a lift. Unlike the temporary pain most people experience, chronic pain never leaves. Sometimes it can diminish and give us a rare glimpse of relief, but then it can flare back up worse than ever. Some chronic pain sufferers face an ever shifting collection of pain that causes even the closest of loved ones to become frustrated.

Pain can seem all consuming and extremely defeating. Pain sucks, but life, despite the pain, contains joy and beauty. The dark lenses of pain may dim the light, but they do not eradicate it or cease it to exist. Daily life for people in pain requires a constant effort to see past the dark lenses, to see the light. Their efforts are helped when a loved one takes the time to lift the window shades and let in greater light.

As busy as we may be, as frustrated as we might get, we must work to lift the shades and bring in the light. Sometimes it is all that prevents the misery of pain from becoming the misery of life.

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Saith Me… Progress

Progress comes when you focus on your successes while keeping an eye on what still needs to be changed.

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