Divine Design

pexels-photo-122974Okay, so the most amazing thing happened today!  It all started yesterday, though.  I enjoy hanging my laundry out in the sunshine to dry whenever I am able.  My Grandmother used to do it and having her clothes pins each time I am hanging up or taking down laundry I feel a connection to her.  I mean, just think, when i was a child she was using many of the very same clothes pins that I am using now.  So I always feel really peaceful when hanging out or taking in the laundry on a Sunny day.

So I was out there in the back listening to the birds and taking down my laundry when I looked over in my neighbor’s yard and saw that the truck door was open and there was an older lady standing in the yard.  She took me by surprise, but was close enough for me to connect with her by saying hello.  So I was thinking that she must be my new neighbor’s Mom, but I was mistaken.  She let me know that she was the daughter of the neighbor across the road from me and that she had just moved in with her daughter and family.  She stepped closer to me and said that she was just coming to meet her neighbors and she asked if the one whose yard she was standing in was home.  I told her she probably was since her truck door was open.  Well, we started talking and sharing details about ourselves and getting to know each other.  I finally mentioned where I went to church and she said that she had gone there before and really liked the minister and his wife that they were “the sweetest people on earth”…I pretty much have to agree with that assessment!  If they aren’t the sweetest then they are certainly somewhere up near the top of the list for sure.

So this sprung a whole conversation about God and the Bible and our faiths…we spent an entire hour sharing with each other standing there by my clothesline.   I didn’t get anymore laundry off the line until after she left.  It was a most enjoyable meeting as I always enjoy sharing God with someone and she had some incredible faith testimonies to share.

Well, to be honest, MY Plan, was to take down my laundry quickly and go to the gas station and get gas for the mower and tractor and take a box to mail to my parents to the post office.  So, as usual, God’s Plan varied quite a bit from mine.  By the time the lady had gone back home the post office was closed and my husband was home from work a few minutes later.  I thought, well, I will just have to mail that package tomorrow; but how I enjoyed that hour.  You see I normally have most of Tuesdays spent with Bible study, one in my home and one in the evening…since it was the 4th of July I did not get that worship/fellowship time this week…so I had to wait until this coming Sunday…so I thought.  God was good to use this lady to provide that for me and for her.

She kept saying that she felt that even thought it was her intention to meet the other neighbor that the one God really wanted her to meet was obviously me at this time.

Now, all of this was amazing enough to me, but that was all yesterday.

Today I went to work and then thought that I would mail that box on my way home.  However, I had received new information that caused me to rethink this.  My Mom told me that one of my brothers was going to visit them this weekend.  I got to thinking that I would call and see if I could meet up with him and give him the box to take with him.

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I finished my work, and then gave him a call.  He agreed to take the box. I asked him where he was located as he was working on a job site…now here is the Divine Design for sure.  I am only at that site once a month, and he is all over the place with his work.  When he told me where he was, and I asked where it was located…I said, wait…I am on that road too!  So it turned out I had to literally drive across the street from where I was working and wait for him to come out and get the package.  He had just finished up that job so he was ready to come out an reload his truck so neither of us were inconvenienced in the least.

I told my brother, “Now if this wasn’t by Divine Design today, then I don’t know what it was!”  I feel like God said, “Don’t worry about the Post Office, I’ve got it covered in a much better way!”

I just feel all warm and fuzzy whenever God does one of these caring acts like this…it reminds me that he really does care about every little thing in our lives…we just have to take it to him.

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An encounter with a Dump Truck

ht1da7sfftaxxagofbxjA few weeks ago my Dad was out driving and he pulled out in front of a dump truck.  He says that it took the door off of the Murano he was driving.  It certainly caved in the side, and the door was off…we don’t know if it was off because of the crash or because of the rescue.  The Murano was, of course, totaled.  It was only about 8 months old.  My Dad has been having some trouble with his driving for a while now, but other than getting him to stop driving at night…well, he’s a pretty independent person.

I understand the feeling that a senior citizen must have when they have to face the fact that they need to stop driving.  My husband’s Grandmother was very mentally sharp even into her 90’s but she drove very slowly and only into the small town near where she lived by the time she was in her late 80’s.  My Mother in law recently stopped driving, but still hasn’t fully accepted it.  Anyway, as I said, I can understand how it must feel…empathize with them about it.

We all view the ability to get into a car and drive from one point to another as an every day thing…I think that most of us take it for granted….don’t give it that much thought….until we have to stop doing it.

Then suddenly you are forced to rely on others for things like getting your groceries, medicines, doctor’s appointments, just having a day out away from home.  It’s like the person is suddenly a child again in those terms.  I know I would hate this feeling.  It must be deeply depressing and distressing.  Especially, if those around you start treating you like a burden.

Now, both of my parents are disabled stroke victims.  My Mother only has the use of one side of her body.  For her to drive she would need some specialized automotive adaptations…I told her to check into that…I live too far away from them to be of help.  My Dad has been continuing to drive partly due to necessity.  They live in the country side so there is not a lot of delivery options for them or other transportation options like buses, etc.

After this recent accident, in which God delivered him with only a small cracked bone in his hip, which will heal on its own given time…though it will probably take a great deal of time as my Dad also has diabetes which I understand works against you in the healing process…anyway, after this accident my Dad was told that he should quit driving by someone in a more official capacity.  I was pretty happy when he told me that he thought he was going to have to quit driving…but he was still going to have a car.  I told him by all means he should go ahead and get  a Rolls Royce and hire someone named Jeeves to take him from place to place.  (This cannot be afforded at all, of course, but it was said to lighten the moment and let him know I understand!)  He immediately told me he could not afford a Rolls, but he just would get what he had before.  (Too bad, I would really like to ride in a Rolls from the 1930s -preferably convertible- just around the block once.  I think they are the prettiest car.)

Anyway, God used this accident which was a bad situation, for sure…to help my Dad to see what he needed to see, but had been unable to accept.  I am very grateful for this, and most especially for his keeping of my Father safe.  He is bruised up, and in pain, but he is doing a lot better now than he was…and they have a person who is staying with them and working for them around the house and doing yard work who can take them from one point to another.  My Mother was telling me yesterday that she was very excited that the young man drove her to the store for grocery shopping and apparently he had worked in a hospital before so he was very helpful to them with their limitations.  She sounded very happy, and my Dad sounded much hardier than I have heard in weeks.

IMG_1209She is still talking about when she comes to visit us again.  God bless them.  I am so grateful to God for his blessings.

A couple close calls

IMG_1317You know that sometimes we can have a moment where we look and say, “but I was just standing there….” with a dumbfounded expression on our faces..that “I am amazed to be alive right now!” type of knowledge.

This happened a couple years back, and then again a couple weeks ago.  These were to my mind, pretty wild events when you might start to think that the devil is really working to take you out!

A couple years ago, I was out putting out fliers for my house cleaning business.  My friend was along with me, and we had a few hundred of them to hang on mail boxes.  We were almost done…I walked up the street to the next mail box, hung the flier and then turned around and walked back over to the car where my friend was waiting.  Our practice was to do a street or two and then move the car unless we could do a circle and end up back at the car.  This particular street was not like that and as I said it was the end of the day almost….the last street we were on, so we were just getting in and out of the car and doing a few mailboxes at a time.  At any rate, as I was walking back to the car I heard  a noise, and turned around just in time to see a truck that had been parked up the hill roll over that very mail box that I was just standing in front of and flatten it into fire wood sized pieces.  There was a ravine down the hill and a man was chasing the truck trying to jump in the cab to stop it…but it was all too little to late.  I felt it was a blessing that he could not catch that truck because although it probably ruined his day, if he had missed he probably would have been run over by it.  So both he and I had the blessing of being divinely saved from almost certain death.  This was not a pick up truck, but a moving van sized truck…so it was very heavy.  I am sure the man was pretty upset as he had to get a tow truck to get it out of the ravine, and the truck was certainly damaged.  However, all I could feel was how wonderful it was to be taken care of by God so well that I was still unharmed.

Well, a couple weeks ago a similar type of close call took place.  My youngest daughter and I were at a State Park riding the horses and as we were going down a road toward a trail in the woods we heard a cracking noise.  I thought, “Oh a branch fell.”   My horse flinched slightly also.  So a couple minutes later we turned into the trail which was muddy, narrow and down hill.  I got about 10 feet into the trail and heard this tremendous cracking sound…my horse started jumping in terror wanting to flee…all I thought was…”yeah, we need to get out of here even though the down hill muddy run is dangerous…it seems that it would be more dangerous to stay”…Jessy was right behind and I was worried that she needed more room to get away from that sound also.  So both of us ran like crazy on the horses and heard as we ran another final falling sound.  Jessy looked back and told me that a tree had fallen 10 feet behind us on the trail.

I thought, “Wow!  That was close!”  Amazing thing is that another friend was supposed to go riding with us, and if she had there would have been three of us to have to get away from that area at once.  Now it is also possible that we would have been there earlier if she had gone as that was the plan, but it would not have been that much earlier. When you have an event like this happen there are all kinds of scenarios that run through your mind about timing.  However, the most important thought is that I was extremely grateful for God’s care and protection and that God would love me so much as to expend his power to care for me in such circumstances.

God’s long term plan for healing

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When I was young I was very impatient…as the years have gone on I have realized that for most things I have become a much more patient person.  Now, I cannot say that I don’t have some frustrating moments, but I can actually see the changes that God has wrought in me.  I spend a lot more time praying about things that I am concerned about and a lot less time stressing and worrying over them.

I have noticed that this carries over to my friendships because whenever one of my friends is having some stress or anxiety I feel calm enough to attempt to help them with it a bit.

I have witnessed one of my friends go through a great time of healing with some of her family members.  This was a healing of a relationship which was broken off entirely, and many tears were shed over it.  My friend did not really believe that it would ever be healed.  There was a lot of prayer over this.

My testimony today is actually a testimony on behalf of this friend that during these holidays she was able to spend time with those precious family members and the healing of the wounds has begun in earnest.

God is really faithful to answer the desires of the heart of his people!  Praise the Lord, Always, Forever and ever! Amen.

Something new about prayer

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I have learned a lot from people that God has put in my life about who God is.  Each time I think that I am at a stand still on what I am learning about God and am wondering what new thing I could learn…then God provides me with another teacher, or another insight into his word that I have never seen before.

I am very grateful for this…it keeps me growing as a Christian.  The thing is to keep growing as a Christian you have to keep your focus on the Lord and keep looking to grow.

Well, for my latest growth, God has given me two new teachers, one through blogging and another through attending a new church.  Interestingly the areas of growth have to do with learning more about who Jesus and the disciples were as Jewish people.  More about the Jewish culture that they lived in.

My new Pastor and my other teacher both speak about the Kingdom of Heaven being here which Jesus spoke about.  I find this really interesting.

Well in attending a Contagious Discipleship class with my new Pastor as a leader he gave us an assignment.  We were given a sheet of paper with each day of the month on it, and a blank spot next to it.  Our assignment was to call friends and relatives and others that we know, and tell them that they are on our prayer list for the day, and ask them if we can pray for them in any way.

Strangely, the Pastor knew what would often happen…people would say to pray for their children or someone else that they knew.  It would take a bit of work to find out what the person actually was concerned about and needed prayer for themselves.  It would probably be really awkward. When I did call someone it was very awkward, they said that it was too sudden.

Well, my method of prayer has always been to listen whenever I am talking to someone and either mentally add them to my prayer list for that matter, or to tell them that I would pray for them about that (whatever it was).

This has always worked for me and I have felt it was very effective.  While it may have been effective as prayer is…God wanted to teach me that there is something very important that I didn’t realize about the people I was praying for and people in general.

When you tell a person that you will pray for them…they don’t really take it seriously.  They mentally say, “yeah, that’s nice.”  but then they don’t really take it seriously.

I found this out because while I was at our County Fair working in a club booth a lady walked up and was talking to us…during the course of the conversation it came out that she had cancer and was told that she only had up to five years to live.  She told us that the Doctors had all done everything that the could for her and it was spread through her body now.  The lady had such a matter of fact manner about the whole thing.  My heart went out to her and I immediately told her that Doctors are going by statistics and that only God knows how many breaths she has left in her body, and how many days on this earth.  Then for some reason, I found myself telling her that I would like to pray with her.  I jumped up and went around to her side of the booth, and put my arm over her shoulder…she was saying, “yeah, there are a lot of prayers, and a lot of people are praying…”  I told her, “No, I want to pray with you now, is that okay?”

She seemed shocked, and said, “what? now?”  I said, “yes, okay?”  She said, “okay”.  We bowed our heads together and I said a short prayer for her.

Now I am here to tell you…I am not a person who jumps up and prays in public with strangers….it is totally not me.  I am okay with praying by myself, and in small groups that I am studying with…but I have never in my life offered to pray in public with a complete stranger before.  I have told them that I would pray about something, but never have I offered to pray in such a situation.

A couple days went by, and I found myself praying again with a different lady.  All I can say is that the Holy Spirit really felt it was time for me to understand that sometimes saying that you will pray about something is not enough, it is not meaningful to the person you are saying it to.  Many people take it as an insincere way for someone to “blow off” an uncomfortable subject or moment.

I never truly realized this before.  I always thought that telling a person you would pray for them really was taken in the spirit in which it was given.  I have always been diligent to pray when I said that I would.  This was a really important lesson in prayer for me and another step forward in my prayer life.

God is so good to me.  I love it when I learn something new about my Lord…don’t you?

Blessing for the Week

Les (Bub) Robinson 5th gradeI have had a wonderful day today.  I was in my new church and someone I really enjoyed who had quit my old church last Fall walked in with her little girl.  I have been at my new church for about 6 weeks now, it is really enjoyable to be with folks who are sincerely seeking to know God and share him with others in the same way (the not hit them over the head with it method) that I have always liked myself.

I was at my previous church for 15 years and it was really tough to try new churches and go somewhere else.  That being said, my old church has lost its focus on loving God and loving people.  A big building was built about 10 years ago and it has become the focus of the church, maintaining it and paying the bills..to the exclusion of God.  I didn’t leave because I have a hatred for anyone there, or because I don’t love them.  I really do love them, I have been struggling with leaving there for many years now.  Finally, the time was right, and the Holy Spirit and I were in agreement that it was time to go and find another place that I could truly worship him and learn more about him.

Everyone has a path to God and it is very individual.  I have left churches in the past, usually over some insurmountable doctrine that I could not find a sound Biblical basis for.  I am one of those folks who are usually the last one there when all others have fled…the person with their finger in the dike praying for the repairmen to come along and fill the hole.  This time, I didn’t want to be the one like that.  I am praying for the best for all of the members of my old church, but I just cannot be there anymore.

When I started the new one…it was with a feeling of peace and belonging right off the bat!  So I have been enjoying it very much.

Today, I went down to learn about how they did the children’s class and it was very comfortable there also.  I have something I can do here, and I love that idea.

Anyway, so in walked my Christian sister and her awesome little girl!  If that wasn’t enough to make my day, later my brother, whom up until last week, I had not seen in 3 years texted me again this week and wanted to know if I was going to be home.  I gave him my schedule for the day, and part of it was that I would be going to a Contagious Discipleship class tonight…he texted me back and said that he would go with me and he was bringing my niece.  I hadn’t seen my niece in even longer than it had been since I had seen my brother.  They did come and we all went together…it was absolutely awesome!  God is incredible to me!

After all these years, I am feeling like I have my brother back!  The nice thing is that my Mom feels the same way because she hadn’t had much contact either over the years.  He feels like the brother that I knew when we were kids..the one who had the wacky sense of humor and was his own person!

I can tell you that this has touched me to tears of joy!

Christmas in July

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When I was a child we lived over seas for a time, and had not seen my Grandparent’s and Aunt for several years.  It was a very lonely time, as they really knew how to love people.

When they heard that we were returning back home finally they decided to have Christmas in July as we were coming home a couple months before that.  They had been unsure exactly when we would arrive home.  It was very awesome!

My Grandparents even went so far as to put the lights on the outside of the house and light it up, and put up my Grandmother’s huge snowy Christmas tree.  I have never seen an artificial tree like that tree since then.  It was amazing!

When we lived over seas the clothing supplies were limited and not of good quality.  A pair of regular Levis would sell for as much as $50 and back then at home they sold for $5.  So we all looked pretty ratty most of the time.  I even had my Dad’s old navy (and I don’t mean like the store of today, but literally) blue jeans as they fit me and they were the only thing that wasn’t high water on me.  My Dad and were about the same height back then, but now I am taller as he is elderly.

It was a most wonderful gift to be loved so much that they wanted to spend Christmas with us, even though it was 8 months later than the traditional time of December.  Not to mention that it was probably about 110 degrees in the shade when we got home!

I cannot express how well my Grandparents and my Aunt demonstrated the Love of Christ to all of us on a regular basis.  They were a true blessing and example in our lives of how to live showing people love.  They didn’t go to church, but they knew God and had respect for him and recognized Jesus Christ as their savior.  They treated everyone they met with love and respect and kindness, even when they didn’t agree with them.

My Grandfather was the neighborhood’s go to guy when there was a knock or a ping in someone’s car that they didn’t know what was wrong.  People would show up at their door asking if he would take a ride around the block in their car and “just listen to it and tell me what is wrong with it”.  Over the years he took so many rides around the block with people that he should have been dizzy, but he was always glad to do it.

My Grandmother taught me by example what the “perfect” housewife should be like.  She was simply amazing in her organization skills and ability to get a jigsaw puzzle together in short order.  She was also a good secretary for my Grandfather in his business.  She took messages all day every day for him, and he would call her and she would read them back to him.

My Aunt was the person that could spank you, but would be crying all the time she was doing it…I found out the meaning of “it hurts me more than it hurts you…” when I watched her cry and when I had my own children.  Disciplining children is emotionally very hard because you really just want to play with them and enjoy them all the time, but just doing that would be irresponsible when you are the one in charge of helping them to become responsible, loving adults.

At any rate, I thought to share this little memory of Christmas in July and the excellent role models that God in his infinite wisdom provided for me and my siblings as we were growing up.

I am also very grateful to God that he led me to find a person to marry who has the same loving spirit toward me and our children that they demonstrated to me when I was growing up!  I cannot thank God enough for the people he has brought into my life!

 

The tractor in the tree

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This is a Ferguson TO-20 tractor, but for size and appearance it is the same as the old Ford 8N we had when I was in H.S.

This one starts out from a long time ago when I was still in High School…so it is a once upon a time..but it is a fact..not fiction story.

Once upon a time, my brothers and I were home alone on our hog farm down South and I was as usual doing some household chore.  My Dad really believed in making the best use of three of the four of his children.  The youngest was, unfortunately for him, largely exempted from doing much of anything.  That is frequently one of the flaws of parenting the youngest child is that they end up having no concept said child actually turning from baby to child to adolescent.  It’s not really fair to the child to do that because when they become adults the rest of the world does not care about them being “the baby” of the family.  However, this is beside the point of this post.

Anyway, I was doing the dishes, and my oldest brother came running in to me and yelling to me in a very excited way, “You have to help me! I got the tractor stuck in a tree!”

I looked at him, and said, “What do you mean you got the tractor stuck in a tree! That’s not possible!”  He said, “No, I mean it!  I really did! Come and look!  I need you to help me get it down!”  “I don’t want to get in trouble for it!”

I still not believing him, nevertheless went with him to scope out this oddity!  Sure enough, we get to the front door and there in the front yard is the little 8N tractor up on its back wheels with its front wheels hanging over the bottom branch of a Carolina Long Leaf Pine in our front yard….motor still running!

Now I am telling you that the branch it was stuck on was at least 15 feet in the air!  It was just high enough to keep the back wheels of the tractor on the ground!

I looked at it in astonishment and wonder and with no small amount of trepidation!  My brother looked at me and said, “See I told you so!  Now how do I get it down!”  “You have to help me get it down!”

I was older than he by just enough for his young macho male heart to be mad about it whenever I was put in charge of everyone!  However, in situations like this, it was apparent that he looked up to me to help him out.  Unfortunately, I had no idea what to do.  We only lived in the South for a couple years, but we had all already heard stories about tractor accidents claiming lives of two of our Great Aunt’s Husbands.  Even now, when I am an adult..farm accidents are brutal and many times deadly!

So I looked at my brother, and told him to leave that tractor right where it was and not go near it, that if he tried to get it down it would probably fall on him and he would be killed.  As far as I was concerned that was the end of it, until Mom and Dad returned home!  I went back to my dishes already figuring that it was going to be a very unpleasant evening of screaming and yelling, etc. when they got home….all because of my stupid brother!

I know you are thinking, “how did he get the tractor up in the tree?!”  Right?!!  Well, I did ask him while we were standing there and gazing at it.  He told me that he was driving it to go across the road to the field and do some work, when one of my other brothers yelled to him.  He said he looked over to see what that brother wanted and next thing he knew he was on the tractor in the tree!  So he just jumped down and came and got me.

As I said, I went back to my dishes thinking that he would be good enough to follow my “don’t touch it!” wise instructions for survival!  Not so!  About 5 minutes later, after he had repeatedly stood around begging me to think of something he left.  Then came running back in and informed me, “I got it down!”

NOW THAT WAS A SCARY THING TO HEAR!  I looked at him, and called him a Dummy!  told him how stupid he was and how lucky that he wasn’t killed!  Then I asked him how he managed it….”I just jumped back up there and threw it in reverse and it came right down!”

I am telling you that although we were not church goers in the least, God really was looking out for my brother that day!  He saved us from going through a lot of pain and suffering, both in the evening, and also the potential pain and suffering that would have been caused by my brother’s death if that tractor had flipped over on him!  I am really grateful to God for his care in my growing up years and to this day!  God is awesome!  He really cares for those who sometimes don’t have the sense of a billy goat!

Some wondrous things happened to us when we were growing up, this was just one of them!

 

My pheasants

IMG_1147I am raising some pheasants to be released into the wild for the first time this year.  I decided that since I live in a place where I can do this, that I would give it a try.

I actually started with 16.  I ordered 15, but as is sometimes the case I got an extra – I think this might be just a way to give the weaker ones a chance or a sense of fairness since they know you will probably lose some.

Anyway, one of them died within the first week, and another one died at 4 weeks old. Largely due to my error I believe.  I brought it inside as they were picking on it, and it died a couple hours later because it stood in the water dish and got too cold.  It felt the need to hide behind something and the waterer was the tallest thing in the box.  Birds of all kinds have pretty small brains and they are pretty dumb.  I was pretty dumb also as I knew that the bird was standing in corners in the pen and made the mistake of thinking that if the other birds weren’t around it wouldn’t feel the need to hide.  It’s face wasn’t even wet, so I know it didn’t drown…just stood there stupidly until it died of cold.  Though it was in the house and in a warm spot…it should have been fine.

So after that I moved the rest to their out door pen where they have a lot of room.  The pen is covered to protect from hawks, and is electrified on the outside to keep out anything else that might wish to eat them.  I live in an area with foxes, coyotes, hawks, owls, raccoons, etc.  Plenty of predators to choose from.  For the first two nights after moving them out there I would trot out there at midnight with a flash light to make sure nothing had managed to get around my defense system.  The birds continued to thrive.

Normally, in the wild,  pheasant chicks will stay with their Mother and siblings for 10 weeks after their birth, but they are ready to be on the move with her right away.  So my original intention is to keep them until 10 weeks of age then release them.  However, I read more about them and found out the pros and cons of releasing them then, and keeping them until the following Spring.  So I have decided to try something with them…at about 5 weeks of age I started opening the pen gate during the day and letting them out to wander around the horse pasture (I built the pen in a corner of the pasture that the horses don’t seem to like to eat in much but it has tall grass.)

My thought is that if I wait until they are 10 weeks old and just randomly let them go that they will mostly be killed off right away by predators because they won’t know anything about the available hiding places in the area.  So I let them out.  Funny thing happened, they put themselves all back in about 2 hours later for their afternoon nap. (After all, they are still babies!)  All I had to do was think “That was easy!” and close the gate back up and turn the electric back on.

If I had waited until they were 10 weeks old to start this letting them wander they probably wouldn’t have felt bound to their flock and would not have returned.  This time when they are still wanting to stay together with their siblings makes it easier to get them back in.  I can literally open the gate and walk along behind them until they see it and they will go on in on their own. (Totally different from my experience with hogs which never want to go back in at all!)

Well, this went well for about 4 days, then disaster struck.  I went out there in the evening to put them in, and there was no one in the pen, and no birds to be seen.  I thought, “oh no” and got that sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach that you get with you just know that you are not going to like the answer that you find.  I started looking around and then heard one of them…turns out there were 3 of them over in my old neighbor’s vacant house’s backyard…the dumb birds didn’t seem to realize that all they had to do was fly over the fence and could get back “home” to their pen.  They were standing in a corner and crying mournfully about their situation.  Then I went into the yard and heard another one which had wandered into the neighbor’s old chicken pen and was stuck in the weeds…it couldn’t find a way out.  I had to wade through the weeds and rescue it.  The others I chased around for about 15 minutes trying to get hold of them, but they were too fast for me, each one finally remembered that it could fly and flew out over the fence.

After that they all grouped up pretty quickly as a flock in my back yard near their pen, but they weren’t heading to their pen.  I managed to persuade them by urging them along to go on in, and had them all locked up in a few minutes…but the head count told me that 4 of them were still missing.  It was almost dark at this point.  I went looking and calling for them and listening….at the other end of the pasture I found the body of one of the chicks and 2 piles of feathers.  For the life of me, I couldn’t figure out what would attack in broad day light (which it was at the time of the attack) and take more than one chick.  Usually it would be a hawk, and from the appearance of the dead one, that seemed to be the case.

I had started praying as soon as I knew the birds were all missing from the pen, and after I found 4 missing I was really praying hard.  It was very depressing to see that one was dead.  I couldn’t find the other 3 that were missing.  Well, I prayed continuously about it, but was feeling pretty depressed at my failure to protect them.

My husband reminded me that I knew that some of them would not make it, that this would probably happen when they were released and at least they knew about Hawks now.  I told him, that I knew this, but it still hurt.

Well, God is good, the next morning when I went to do my chores there were two chicks standing around outside the pen waiting to rejoin the rest of the flock, and that afternoon the other one showed up.  I figure those 3 will be the ones who have the best chance of surviving as they hid the longest after the hawk attack.  I have to say, that once again, God did not let me down.

I had decided to keep them in for a few days until the hawk moved on, but when I went out this morning there were 7 of them that had already managed to fly out the small opening (too small for the hawks and owls to want to fly into) in the top covers…these birds have already had a taste of the freedom of the open spaces, so they know how to get there and won’t stay in anymore.  So I am back to the 10 weeks of age release….I think they will all be ready by then.  It is tough to mother another species so that they are ready to survive.  It is also very interesting to try it!  I am curious to see how many of them I will see around the area next Spring, if any..though they may make it and still be invisible.  Pheasants are very well camo’d by God’s design!  You can practically step on one before you see it!

God keeps the little birds

IMG_1344Today, I was out at the burn pile, and saw a mother bird fly away, but didn’t see a nest.  My husband came out and lit the pile up. I was pretty depressed about this, and told him I thought that a bird was nesting in there.  He said that he had not seen any bird when he went to light it or heard anything.

So I decided to hope and pray that the bird was just going after insects or something in the pile to make a nest.

Unfortunately, I heard a bunch of tweeting and saw a baby bird a while later walking around near the pile.  I thought, “Oh no! That means there was a nest!”  Then picked up the baby and took it over and set it away from the fire by one of our peach trees so his Mom could find him and take care of him.  Birds are really good about taking care of their babies where ever they are located. This baby bird was very near to fledging so I felt that it should be okay.  I put a few drops of water on its back to cool it off, and offered it some meal worms that I had for my pheasant babies.  It was not interested in the food (probably had just been fed before the fire).  I checked on it about an hour later and it was walking around in that area. So I went back to the work of cleaning stalls!

Well about an hour and a half later I was done with my work and decided to check on the bird again.  I walked by the burn pile, and heard chirping again.  I started looking around to see if I could find the source, figuring that it was a sibling to the other one.  Next thing I know I see a baby bird hopping around in the ashes (hot foot!).  I reached down and grabbed it out and cooled it off with some water, and put it over with it’s sibling.  This bird was a bit smaller than the other baby.  When I had picked up this bird its Mother was screaming at me from the yard…so she saw where I put it.

I walked back over to check and see if there were any other babies.  Then I glimpsed a half burned nest lying on it’s side at the edge in a branch that wasn’t burned.  It was an amazing sight because that burn pile really went up and was hot.

God heard my prayer that no baby birds would be hurt while burning our burn pile!  God is so gracious and caring…even for the little birds!  He protected them from harm!