Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Skinny

A Little Catch-up on the Chickens, the Children, and Church.

1. The Chickens

This past spring, I put twenty fertilized eggs into an incubator that our local extension office had let us borrow. Twelve chicks hatched out and stayed in the schoolroom for almost five weeks. I then kicked them out to the coop. They did great for four days and then on the fifth day, that morning, I went out to feed them and every last one of them were GONE. There was evidence from the coop door that an animal had pushed the chicken wire up and had gotten in. We think the dogs took part in this little soiree as there were little piles of feathers amongst their large cow bones out by the cellar.
I'm still not speaking to them.

After the baby chick massacre we had two hens go broody, a Wyandotte and a Buff Orpington. The Wyandotte hatched out two chicks and the BO hatched out one chick. Just two days after the Wyandotte had hatched out her two, I discovered that one of them had been killed and eaten by a very large and still digesting his chicken nugget, rat snake. The husband and I pounded on him with two hoes and he is no more.

This morning I went out to feed and discovered the other chick belonging to Ms. Wyandotte had gone the way of the first and yes, the culprit being a very large rat snake was still present digesting a much larger chicken nugget meal (and just gotta mention here that the whole scene was worthy of a nature documentary on snakes). Needless to say the husband and I were most helpful in seeing that another Mr. Snake would be enjoying no more meals via the coop.

So now we have the Buff Orpington raising her lone chick that I'm just sure is a pullet (yay me). This afternoon I went out to check on the whole lot and found yet another snake (very large garter snake) skulking about the coop and snuffed him out with my trusty hoe.

We are now at ten hens and one pullet. Which isn't really that bad as we've dealt with record breaking heat this summer and I was sure we would lose more. Mr. Incredible (the very large and very mean rooster) died, but he doesn't count, sorry, if that sounds callous but I didn't like him, you wouldn't have either...trust me on this one.

2. The Children

The children have dived headfirst into school. Actually we're doing some serious review work right now while I wait for our stuff from Rainbow to make it here.
They're also gearing up and preparing for the county fair that is at the end of this month.

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Both girls will be participating in the 4H Horse Show and all three cherubs will be showing their calves at the Bucket Calf Show.

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 Honestly it's been a long summer and I think we were ready to have a full-time school schedule again.
We did keep up with math throughout the summer and some language arts though.

3. Church

Recently a friend of mine emailed me and very sensitively and tactfully inquired about how we're going about searching for a church. Her email touched my heart as it was evident that she in no way wanted to offend but was curious as to how we were going about making this very important decision.
We do have somewhat of a checklist if you will, but first and most importantly we're bathing this with prayer and I'm talking a serious soaking of prayer.
But getting back to the checklist, there must be truth in the pulpit with sound biblical teaching. Tim and I both are in agreement that we won't settle for mediocrity or the dumbing down of the gospel that is becoming widespread in too many pulpits today. I'll stop there regarding the deception of flock leaders.
We also desire to be a part of a fellowship where those in leadership are loving, transparent, and not arrogant. For us the leaders must be above reproach, not perfect mind you, but quick to repent and ask forgiveness if confronted with sin.
The churches we've visited have primarily been Southern Baptist Churches as that is where we believe we're to be. We're not the Seeker Sensitive types, so when we see these practices being implemented we steer clear. 

Of course, there are other factors such as distance. We want to be active in whatever church the Lord leads us to. We were at our former church. We enjoy serving. And we live so far out in the country that we are limited as to how many churches are that close. Tim commutes an hour round trip Monday through Friday, so distance is definitely a factor.

Anyway, that's the skinny of what's up here and I do desire your prayers regarding our Lord's direction. A part of me believes we're still going through a great deal of forgiving and healing spiritually and won't be free to enter another fellowship until we've dealt with the baggage that we keep finding ourselves dragging around.

We haven't been popular regarding some, but we know we're on the right road and really that's all that matters.

Blessings, Julie

Oh and by the way, we've been getting rain and the temperatures have come down to the upper 90's in the daytime. Thanks for your prayers regarding the drought in Oklahoma. We're still experiencing drought but the recent rains have been so encouraging!

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2 comments:

Jenn4him said...

Wow, that's a neat picture, there at the end! What are you doing to do to keep the chicks safe? That would be so frustrating. Your children look as if they are having such a wonderful time with their animals. Takes me back to a time I halter broke my little calf, planning to enter in the 4H fair, but then divorcing parents ended that dream. Finding a church is difficult. I'd have to say our church is imperfect, but handles the Word of God with truth and I see hearts that want to honor the Lord in our leaders. However, it is getting so big that I feel lost sometimes. Not a reason to leave,just something to pray about. So glad you posted. So glad your weather is a bit better. Your temps in the 90's were what we were getting in our worst this summer and it nearly drove me nuts. It's all perspective!

Julie... said...

Jenn, to keep the chicks safe they are in a coop with small gage chicken wire. We believe a racoon was able to work with the wire that was on the door until it got a large enough hole and then pushed it up so that it could get in the coop. Racoons are amazingly strong and agile and can wreak havoc when you think all is secure. We think the dogs caught on to him just as he gained entrance and then took full advantage of the chicken dinners before them. We've sinced fixed that particular problem but regarding snakes there just really aren't any 100% surefire ways to keep them out...sadly.
Jenn, no there aren't any "perfect" churches, but there are many that are in the will of God and the Spirit of God is moving to bring conviction, revelation, and deliverance. Those in the pulpit are submissive to the Lord and not asspiring to build their own kingdoms. I also believe that the Lord will move to do His will in a church that is under deceptive leadership. Our desire is to follow the Lord's leading into that first kind of church, one that leadership is submissive to it's Redeemer and King our Lord Jesus Christ. He is merciful and will provide in His own time.
Thanks for visiting :-)!
Blessings, Julie