Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Twelve for 12/12/2012

Freezing fog rolled in last night and covered all of outside.  In the part of the country I originate from, we called this kind of klinging frost "Hoarfrost".  The day was overcast, the cold causing the frost to hang all day.  I took these photos in afternoon.

And to commeorate this unique day in history: (That twelve-twelve-twelve thing!) I'm posting twelve of the photos I took today.

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

God Romance-Rainbows and Promises

God's colourful token of covenant
On Monday, 2 July 2012, the BBC aired a story on The One Show.  It was a short film in which scientist and presenter, Marty Jopson, put forth the question, “Where is the end of the rainbow?”  I have tried to find a link to post on the story, but couldn’t find one. 
                        Of course, the Irish have said for years upon years that if you can find the end of the rainbow, you will find a pot of gold.  Okay, so we know that where the rainbow ends is actually an illusion.  But, what Dr. Jopson revealed was astonishing—at least it was to me. 
                        Dr. Jopson created a rainbow by using a sprinkler system.  The demonstration created the familiar and expected arch.  But then he stood in on the black-top with a hose, spraying in a section.  The reason one never finds the end of a rainbow is because there is no end of the rainbow; a rainbow is in fact a Circle!
                        Christians and Jews look at a rainbow and see God’s promises. 
“Behold, I establish My covenant or pledge with you and with your descendants after you and with every living creatue that is with you—whether the birds, the livestock, or the wild beast of the earth along with you, as many as came out of the ark—every animal of the earth.  I will establish My covenant with you:  Never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of a flood; neither shall there ever again be a flood to destroy the each and make it corrupt.  And God said, ‘This is my token of the covenant (solemn pledge) which I am making between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations:  I set My bow [rainbow] in the cloud, and it shall be a token or sign of a covenant between Me and the earth.’”  Genesis 9:9-13.
                        As I watched the show and saw the water refract the light into colours, which formed a perfect circle, those scriptures came to my mind.  But another type of ring came into my mind—an engagement ring.  Through light and colour, God was pledging Himself to mankind; betrothing us to Him. 
                        Because of these precious words that are echoed in the Christian Bible and the Torah, each time I see part of a rainbow, I am reminded of the whole circle.  I am reminded of God’s Kingdom.  I don’t see the whole circle, but I know its there.  I can’t see heaven, but I know heaven exists, though hidden.  I cannot see Father God’s face—but I can see His ring of commitment to me.  I don’t see rainbows everyday—but I know the potential to see them exists. 
                        Dr. Jopson stood in the midst of a rainbow created by light and mist—surrounded by a symbol of promise.  Though unseen, I also stand in the circle of God’s light, love and promise.  I stand there not seeing it, but believe because of faith.  And then, in the midst of the trials, I get a short glimpse of shimmer, shine and beauty that is the rainbow of God’s faithfulness. 
                        So, although I can’t find the link to post with this, and my description is unscientific, as well as limited, I shared the main point of the film--a rainbow has no end--because it is a CIRCLE.  And I’ve shared how it affected my heart and mind--God's love has no beginning and no end--because He is eternal. 
                        I hope you see lots of rainbows soon.
        Serving Jesus, Author of our faith,
“Lady Helene”

Monday, 10 December 2012

Sewing class progress

          Today is sunny, which I know will please "Floss".  Over twenty-give years ago on this date, another woman was in labour and giving birth to my youngest step-daughter.  I am grateful that "Floss's" Mom has not been selfish, but willingly shared "Floss" with me.  Happy Birthday Wonderful Girl!
        So, today is the last day of our sewing class.  I shall miss the ladies and learning new skills to improve my sewing.  I must admit, the two-and-a-half hours go speedily each week.  
       The new schedule for classes that begin the middle of January come out today as well.  Great anticipation fills my little heart; as I want to see what comes next!  If possible, I may want to take two classes if I can.  
On the hanger
       Please forgive my vanity in thinking that you might want to see the final product of this class.

       This is a very simple frock; the skills learned in it's making are foundational on which to build.  It's rather like a musician learning to play scales and read music before he/she plays a song, or writes a symphony.  

       What I really like is that the dress actually fits better than most others I've made, because the dress is made to fit my exact measurements.

      Week before last, as I was basting in the sleeves, I showed the instructor my work.  As she inspected, she remarked: "Hurry and get a car!  I want you on my team."  That is so encouraging!

A satisfying fit. 
         There is a hunch that I will be wearing this dress a lot because it is so comfortable and feels flattering. 

        Serving Jesus, Author of our faith,
"Lady Helene"

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Gingerbread Village

This autumn, a young man named David came to vist our Church.  His story of escape from Sudan as a young man reminded me of the amazing power of grace, empowerment and redemption.  

David is now in England, obtaining a Masters Degree with the hope of returning to the new nation of South Sudan and working with the government of build a strong infrastructure.  Currently he and friends minister to over 900 children from his home village, which is almost inaccessable.  

My heart was tugged--what could I do to help him?  

The ageless question from thousands of years previous came softly to my mind; "What is that in your hand?"  Like Moses, God puts things into our hands to enable us to affect others positively for the kingdom.  Christmas was coming.  Gingerbread houses...a beautiful thing to make and a lovely way to decorate for Christmas.  My step-daughters had told me I could easily sell lots of them.  So, the plan unfolded in my mind.  Bake a gingerbread village of 10 houses and sell them.  And my current progress? --two houses now assembled, decorated and delivered; with four orders outstanding.  So I'm praying the Lord will help me complete the 10.  

The pre-fab factory is open
I've baked two batches now..which produces between two and three houses.  I'm still figuring out how thick to roll it for the best result.  Getting the roof too thick makes it too heavy for the rest of the little building.  

Oh, and because I had dough left over, I was able to bake one gingerbread man fo the Maverick.  

Jelly beans and smarties!

       All the houses are the same size, but obviously, each one is going to end up unique because of the goodies I put on the outside.  
       Believe it or not, I spent about fifteen to twenty minutes sorting sultanas (raisins made from white grapes) from candied citrus peel and regular raisins.  And sections of chocolate make great windows and doors.  
       I do try to put on a variety of sweets to get different textures, flavours and colours.  

       I found a couple of small tins of tube-shaped biscuits/cookies, to look a bit like logs.  Crispy, light and a nice foil to the intense spice of the ginger. 

Fruit jellies and tube-shaped luxery biscuits.
       When royal icing gets thick and heavy, it will slide and look like snow hanging/falling off the house.  It dries pretty hard, and makes it looklike the house is in a snow-laden country. 

Funny, but I get excited to see what each house will look like once it is finished, because I never know when I start.  

Well, I wanted to make a quick post, as more days have passed than I would like between posts.  

The other benefit is that I get to use the oven to warm up the flat a little more than when using the central heating.  

I hope your Christmas preparations are going well.  Now that I've made this posting, I'm going to work on more Christmas presents.  

Serving Jesus, Author of our faith,
"Lady Helene"