Enough Said…

This poem was written some years ago, but is today dedicated to the memory of Mark Neiger and for the comfort of his family. We are all praying for you guys.

Sometimes He Says Nothing

by Jarod Hinton, 2006

If I had words to speak just now

that would your comfort bring,

I would not cease to make them known

and ease your sorrowing.

But such a song does not exist

‘least one of which I know,

For only to our Lord’s dear side

for comfort can we go.

He knows the words, and speaks the truth,

our hearts do yearn to hear.

His wisdom, grace, and strength do find

the way to ease our tears.

But even he at times speaks not,

and his presence only gives;

And stands beside us near at hand

while our grief and sorrow live.

And while we weep, and mourn our loss,

another sound we hear.

The soft, sweet weeping of the Lord

as he stands beside us near.

For he does know the hurt and pain.

He’s acquainted with our grief.

He is familiar with the times

when pain finds no relief.

So throw yourself upon his love.

Weep freely in his breast.

There is no friend so close as he;

and his comfort is the best.

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Creativity and Inspiration

OH the simple joy of creating a character and “discovering” how he would respond in a given situation. Oh the joy of creating that situation! 🙂 I had quite a fine 45 minute writing session today. Got those creative juices flowing.

I remember the first time it happened to me. That moment when you feel as though you are floating on the wind of inspiration and suddenly your writing doesn’t feel like work any more. I was writing about a planet. The planet Pridon. I started writing about how Pridon was more than half one huge city, and that the other part was a harsh wilderness that only the native people spent much time in. Then I started writing about the nature of the relationship between the “colonists” and the “natives” and then about cultural backgrounds, and then about politics and government and, get this, a five point compass instead of four. I remember feeling as though I was “discovering” this new and interesting planet, not actually creating it from scratch. It was a remarkable and exciting moment.

I’ve often thought of writing a story about this city-planet. Perhaps I will do something short. What do y’all think?

Today I spent time outlining my book. Finished chapter 2. (Just the outline mind you.) Had to find a way to make the hero become a pivotal part of the story so he would be pulled into the intrigue and surprises being planned by major characters. Found a somewhat unique way I think. Got me excited to see the plot coming together a little bit. 🙂 Stay tuned!

Youthful Parents

I was listening to the radio this morning and I heard a little snip-it: “Here’s a thought: Children are a great comfort in your old age. They will also help you reach it faster.”

While this made me chuckle inside, almost immediately it also made me indignant. There is a grain of truth in the fact that children cause a good deal of stress and require a great deal of attention and work. Some of the hardest work in the world is training, shaping, and loving a person from infancy into adulthood. Getting them to decent adulthood is even harder than that. And training mighty men and women up from the selfish children they start out being is a task so big only God can do it.

However, I do not believe children rob us of our youthfulness. I believe they extend it! There is nothing to keep you young like a 18 month old who likes to get into everything. Talk about a work out! It also keeps my mind sharp to be always aware of where he is, not to mention being aware of how I am training him. Yes, it is also tiring, but just because it tires me out does not mean it is stealing my youth. Nothing worth having was easily attained.

Just for giggles I looked up synonyms to “youthful” and these are some: enthusiastic, fresh, full of life, keen, vigorous, active, buoyant. In my opinion, these things are encouraged and grow stronger in my life BECAUSE I have children. Some reduction in these qualities is normal because…well…big surprise…..I’m growing older. But they are kept alive longer because my children keep me young.

Adrianisms: God’s Specific Love

“God does not just love all of us: He loves EACH of us.” – Adrian Rogers

What a wonderful love that is not just collective and corporate, but specific and individually applied. God does love the whole world, all of us. But he also loves every individual, each and every one.

He knows our specific needs, the concerns of our lives, the things that no one else even notices. God knows. He is always paying attention. This is an encouragement. We are more than a number to our Father in Heaven.

Clinging to my Gun and my Religion

A few words that I hope will be encouraging to those of us that are very disappointed (to put it mildly) in the outcome of last night’s election.

Honestly, I’m stunned. I was very confident Romney would win, and that we would stave off the judgement of God a little longer. I was certain evil would not win the day! Boy was I wrong…  The forces of evil did succeed, and God “raised up” a leader who is as polar opposite of truly Biblical thinking and worldview as any that I can imagine. I suppose Vladimir Putin would be a worse president, but only by a slim margin. The Scripture says that God raises up one and puts down another. I feel put down, to change the usage there just a little. :o(

Part of me wants to go all “conspiracy” and start preparing for the end of modern civilization. Like the absolute breakdown of our entire economy, society, morals, communication, technology, and power-grid. I feel like I might have to hunt for our main courses, grow the rest of our food, and take turns with the men in our family sleeping on the porch with shotgun in hand to ward off the looters and scavengers. Or that I will begin to live out the book “1984”. George Orwell had it right, just about 30 years too early. Government’s about to get really huge and pushy, folks. Nosy too.

What would really make me fight tooth and nail is if the Government tries to tell me that I am endangering my children by taking them to a regular religious meeting, or some other crazy excuse, and tries to take them from me. You have never seen a parent with a faster trigger finger or more perfect aim, if things come to that extremity! So that part of me wants to cling to my gun, and prepare for the worst.

But another side of me (and neither of these points of view are necessarily opposite or incompatible) wants to cling to my “religion” in the sense that I know God is bigger than elections. I know he hasn’t been surprised by this, and he knew it was coming. Indeed he probably looked at Satan and said “Test my people. You may bring the fire.” when he permitted the Evil One to have a victory last night. (The Evil One being Satan, not Obama.) We cried out for God’s mercy, and this time he said “no.” Why are we surprised?

Mercy is by definition, undeserved. We should not be angry when the Lord does not grant the mercy we have requested. But there are so many other instances of the mercy of God being showered upon us all…we should be grateful, not disappointed.

But I digress from the point. My point is this: my “religion”, my faith, informs me that the Lord Jesus Christ sits as THE Ruler, not “a” ruler, but THE Eternal Ruler of the universe. He has held this position since time began. Shoot folks, he even invented TIME itself! He sees the end from the beginning. He has absolute wisdom, absolute power, absolute strength, and very importantly…absolute love for his children. He knows how to rule in the affairs of men a whole lot better than I do. I asked him for something, and he said no. I think I’ll just trust that he knows what he is doing. But no election, or evil triumph, or scary future….is so earth-shattering that it rattles my Lord Christ or ever strips him of ABSOLUTE authority.

Has God ever let me down in the past? No. Has he ever not cared for my needs? Nope! What about my family? Nada! Surely God needs electricity and grocery stores and viable currency to accomplish his will and provide for his children? AAAAAHHHHHIII don’t really see these things being a hindrance to the person who invented stars, the Moon, laws of physics, the human brain, every flower that is known to man, dinosaurs (a.k.a. dragons), and also knows the name of every hair on your head.  Nope, just don’t think it’s an issue.

So let’s remember whom we serve, whom we belong to, and that he knew last week what we would need today. 

Maybe I should just cling to him instead. Yeah, good idea Preacher. Thanks! ;o)

The Modest Mom Giveaway!

In recent days I’ve been on the look out for a few pieces of modest clothing.  I’ve just about lost the last of the baby weight from Elisha Philip and sewing time is at a premium.  I stumbled upon the Modest Mom Blog and Deborah & Co (then the Modest Mom) on an internet search engine and have been so blessed by both.  In celebration of their new name, Deborah & Co, and their new website they are hosting a grand giveaway valued at $250 to one winner.  Lots and lots of prizes.  You really should head on over and check it out and support this uncompromising, family business.

Deborah and Co.

Fall Family Outing

Every year our family tries to make it up to northern Georgia to get apples. It is a wonderful chance to enjoy the fall colors and weather, have a little family adventure, and get three or four bushels of apples to make apple sauce, apple jelly, apple butter, etc. We made quite the journey out of it. Come experience this with us!

We spent some time looking for a spot for a picnic, complete with picnic tables and a play ground. At about 1:00 we settled for a grassy spot outside a secluded subdivision. Turned out very nicely. It was quiet and safe, and we enjoyed our selves!

Elisha seemed to really get into it. He sure is full of smiles.

The children had a good time climbing the trees and just chasing each other in the grass. It really was very pleasant, and it reminded me of how a little creativity can turn a hum-drum location into a great family memory. It’s funny how we always seem to seek the spectacular, but it is the simpler things that bring us the most lasting joy.

“Watch this Daddy!” How I love to hear that. 🙂

After about three hours in the car we arrived at our favorite little apple stand, just across the border into South Carolina. They sell apple cider, apple jellies, fried apple pies, and many other fun treats of the season. We spent about an hour there.

The children (and, truth be told, Anna too) enjoyed picking a bag full of apples. They picked some of the very best apples, and had a wonderful time walking through the small orchard.

The Picker’s Parade

Sharing fried apple pies together. I really like Ezekiel’s expression. Elisha did get some, just not in this picture.  🙂

Six bushels purchased and loaded. We get a good enough deal on the apple’s themselves to make the trip worth it financially. But I’d have to say that the trip is “worth it” for many other reasons than just the savings. Memory building, having fun together, enjoying life together…these things are what helps families stick together during the hard times. It builds relationships and encourages family harmony.

And I could not end this post without pointing out that while I was the chauffeur for this journey, this lovely woman was the brains and creativity behind it all.  My dear wife makes me better as a father, as a husband, and as a man. She improves my life in every area, and I am deeply blessed to have such a woman by my side.

I’d encourage everyone to consider something like this to make a regular part of your family life.   God bless your day!