Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Celtic Cry

Okay, so if you will remember, it was not that long ago that I posted the lyrics to one of my favorite songs from one of my favorite CDs. And, if you check my blog frequently, it should be no surprise to you that "Celtic Cry" is, in my opinion, some of the greatest music ever. Just the fact that their is a story behind each song, a martyr to whom the song is dedicated to (tis' where I got my idea for my last poem *wink*) Anyway, Their songs are really meaningful, and these two, "Still" and "Mighty Yet Merciful" are my favorites!!!! The words are so meaningful!
Still by Various Artists on Grooveshark Mighty Yet Merciful by Various Artists on Grooveshark
See, I told you they were amazing!!!!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

The Life of Vanya Moiseyev...

"If you love anything or anyone in this world more than Jesus, you cannot follow Him." 
Vanya Moiseyev

Warning: This post is a wee bit of a long one due to the fact that I had to combine the poem that I had written and a brief summary of the life of the martyr to whom I am dedicating the poem. So, if you are up for reading this, I would appreciate any feedback you might have for me... :)

(Let me first explain...I wrote this poem a  little while back with the purpose of dedicating it to a martyr, but just couldn't figure out who that would be. Well, just the other day, I became glued to the story of Vanya Moiseyev, and just finished his book. So, I am dedicating the poem to him. Below, I have written a "brief" summary of his life story)

     When Vanya Moiseyev was inducted into the Russian Red Army at the age of eighteen, people were not immediately aware of his faith in Jesus Christ...till one day, he showed up late for the morning line-up. When asked by one of the officers what had delayed him, he un-abashedly answered that he had been praying. 
     The officers soon found that Vanya was a strong believer, and that it would take other means than persuasive speech to cause him to denounce this faith. After that, there were a series of tortures that he was put through to cause him to denounce his faith. Contrary to what the leading officers and Polit-Ruk believed, Vanya did not waver in his faith. In fact, after one year of nights in below zero temperatures (wearing only his summer uniform), numerous interrogations, and a different five-day-time-periods without food, Vanya stood even stronger. In that time, God never aloud him to get cold, or lack for food, and to Vanya, these times of pain and suffering were seen to him as just another opportunity to fast and pray. All that he was put through, he did it ever rejoicing and praising God.
  It seemed with Vanya, that he was happier when suffering for Christ than at any other times. And what he feared the most was not the pain that they could inflict upon his body, but the possibility of giving in to them and denying Christ's name. 
     Though times were hard, Vanya endured for a single purpose....God had revealed to him that He still had work for Vanya to do. God used him greatly in Kerch and it was Vanya's open and unwavering faith that brought many of his comrades to believe in God. 
     In fact, the leaders began to worry as Vanya's faith spread throughout the camp. On one occasion, while a group of men were waiting to begin a meeting, one of the more blatant atheists challenged Vanya to a debate. Vanya willingly accepted, seeing it as an opportunity from the Lord to share his faith. The man promised Vanya that were he to receive leave the next day by the enabling power of Vanya's God, he would believe. The next day, leave, which was very rare at that time, was granted to this young man, and he left believing in Vanya's God. 
     The leaders were angered by all these re-occurring episodes of unexplainable events, and they sought to silence Vanya. It was his unbreakable faith and yet constant obedience to their authority that angered them the most. Their purpose was to destroy God, and were they not to succeed in putting out the flames of these Chrisitans, who so loudly proclaimed His works, then many would come to Christ and their work would be ruined. All these miraculous happenings, these were going against their teachings that everything had a scientific explanation...one that did not involve a Creator.
Finally, in desperation to make him give in, they beat him horribly, threatening prison for seven years. But he met their beatings by saying, "If the Lord wills, I shall go to prison, if not I shall return  tomorrow to Kerch." 
   Vanya was so close, so dependent, so strong in the Lord, that nothing could sway him. He truly knew what it was to take up his cross and follow Jesus. But Vanya did not stand firm in his own strength or because he was any better at enduring pain, but the fact that his God was stronger than that pain, and He'd never failed any that believed on Him in the past, and never will. "For I consider that the suffering of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us" Romans 8:18
     God never promised His people that following Him would provide a life free from pain, but that when those sufferings came, they would have the strength to stand firm. And this is where Vanya found his strength. 
       Really, in light of eternity, nothing that we do, except that done for Christ, will really matter in the end. For Vanya, he had a chance to live every moment of his life focused on that goal.
     Finally, the leaders reached a point when they were determined to convert him, whatever it took. They truly believed that they could bend him, but on July 16, 1972, Vanya's sorrows ended and he was at last rewarded with a crown from his Savior's hand. 
     His story is really an amazing one, and I would definitely recommend reading it.  His faith and dependence on God are so encouraging. I believe that there is a closeness that those persecuted for their faith feel with Christ that we, who live peaceful lives cannot fully understand. There is a realization there of an utter dependence on God for every little need. And Vanya found that he could only combat these battles by constant prayer. 
     The story is also a good reminder that God is alive and He's working in the lives of many today. He's not just a God from the past, who worked miracles only in the ancient days. He's our risen Savior, He is powerful, and He takes care of His own!!!!

Enjoy the poem, if you're still reading this rather long-winded post, and I would really appreciate any feed back you have on it!

Dedicated To Vanya Moiseyev
A simple child, but one who knew
‘Twas gain to die when dying for you
He stood in faith to face the foe
And follow where you’d have him go

You were the fire that drew him near
It was in pain your truths made dear
He’d seen the sorrow of the one
Denying that he knew the Son

He’d witnessed joy of those who died
Standing strong what’re betide
And with the apostle Paul he said
There’s gain when e’er our blood is shed

So shielded by truth, empowered by grace
With hopes of seeing You face to face
He saw this worldly gain as loss
Forsaking all, he took his cross

In suffering, he brought you glory
Each pain, he bore it willingly
He trusted that when he would die
He’d reign eternally on high

He found great joy in every pain
Counting costs, he saw but gain
He was the nearest to your throne
When suffering for Christ alone

Standing unashamed of you
This was the least that he could do
Choosing a crown from his master’s hand
Over mansions, great and grand

To him there was no greater thing
Than dying for his glorious King
Thankful to be counted worthy
To give his life, O Lord, for Thee

He found his strength, steadfast in prayer
And garments of Your truth to wear
So he would never from You stray
But in Your grace, forever stay

He gave his all, and wishing still
His cup of pain, you’d further fill
Resting on him was Your Spirit
That would see him through it all

Burning in him was Your fire
That was shining Your desire
Then dying for You who’d given all
“Forgive them Jesus,” was his call

With the last he did proclaim
The glories of Your holy name
For Heaven’s kingdom was his home
And Jesus footstool was his throne

Then he passed from pain to glory
Singing praise on bended knee
His master said, "My Child, well done
Your earthly victory is won

In faith, you ran the earthly race
Standing strong with in my grace
You're lived your life, my child, for me
Come reign for all eternity
~Lynnae Spafford~

"Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints." Psalm 116:15

"Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. If anyone serves Me, he must follow me; and where I am there will my servant be also. If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him." John 12:25-16

"And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell." Matthew 10:28

"For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain." Philippians 1:21

"Do not far any of those things which you are about to suffer. Indeed, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and you will have tribulation ten days. Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life." Revelations 2:10

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

I Got Tagged!!!

So, I was just tagged by Emily Coder from   http://astheroadbends.blogspot.com/   to answer 30 very random questions about my very random self... I will then be tagging two others who will take these questions and do likewise...So, enjoy!!!!

1. What color are your socks right now?
Well...the tops of them are white, and the bottoms of them are kinda' sorta' brown :)

2. What are you listening to right now?
10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord) by Matt Redman...One of me favorites!!!

3. What was the last thing you ate?
A couple delicious cinnamon raisin muffins I had made to go along with our game tonight *grin*...Oh, and a cup of coffee, of course!

4. Can you drive a stick?
The only thing I've ever driven is a tractor, and I don't think my turn for driving a car will be any time soon ;)

5. Last person you spoke to on the phone?
um....my brother ('bout the only person I talk to over the phone :)

6. How old are you today?
Seventeen years, and almost four months...But please, don't expect me to record the days...this old brain of mine is WAY too tired to be figurin' advanced math problems at 12:00 in the morning!

7. What is your favorite sport to watch?
Definitely football...and watching it live is the best!!!!

8. What is your favorite drink?
No question about it....straight, strong, black coffee first thing each morning, though licorice tea has to be a close second!

9. Have you ever dyed your hair?
Nope...I figured red heads are thought to be the smartest, and I don't see why I should changes that :)

10. What is your favorite food?
Well, Thai food is one of the best but personally, I just like food in general, in any shape or form...'course, I never mind a Burgervile burger and mock perk shake!

11. Do you sing in the shower?
If I'm not busy telling myself a story :)

12. Favorite day of the year?

13. What is one  place(s) do you want to visit?
I am afraid there is a slight problem here for me. I must limit myself...But since I must, I wish to visit somewhere deep down South, Ireland, Prince Edward Island, and the like...

14. What was your favorite toy as a child?
Probably the yellow duck that I received from my grandma when I was four...and I still have it :)

15. What is your favorite season?
I think that I'd have to say summer. There's just something about that summer sun, combined with the sounds of bi-planes flying overhead, and all of those neighbors that realize that their fields of hay are due for a hair cut!

16. Cherries or Blueberries?
Cherries fresh from our orchard tree...unless they're wild blueberries from Michigan!

17. Vanilla or Chocolate?
No question about it, if my dessert doesn't have chocolate in it, it's not worth the calories to me...but I'm not prejudice :)

18. What is (one of) your favorite song(s)?
Yikes, I think that the better question here for me would be "what songs do I not like" :) I'd have to say though, some of thems that are at the top of the list are "How Firm A Foundation"or "King of Kings Majesty" by Jarrod Cooper...And then I love the country song "From Here to Eternity"! And then I love the sweet songs from the '50s!!!!

19. Favorite activity?
I think that I'd definitely have to say family time...whether we are playing a game, working on a project, or watching a BBC classic together, those are always the best memories!

20. Have you ever left the country you live in?

21. What is on the floor of your closet right now?
My violin music, a stack of boxes, and some clothes that have fallen from their hangers :)

22. What did you do last night?
Sat around the table with some of the family while Jonathon poured over the directions to "Setters of America" trying to figure out how to play it...by the time he'd finally figured it out enough to play it, it was 11:00, and we headed for bed :)

23. What are you afraid of most?
Big, creepy, spiders, whose  main composition is legs :) 

24. If you had the option, would you choose a fun drink, or a yummy, eat-ible snack?
Probably the snack...especially if it involved chocolate!

25. Favorite day of the week?
Sundays and Fridays!

26. Favorite breed of dog?
English Black Labs...and I think we have the best one right now :)

27. Favorite genre of literature?
Probably real-life accounts...like holocaust journals, missionary stories, and soldier's accounts.

28. Diamonds or pearls?
I've only ever had pearls, and those are fake, so I'm not really sure, but I might choose diamonds...

29. What is your favorite flower?
Though roses are probably my favorite, I also love bouquets of wild flowers!

30. An item on your bucket list?
Well, hunting is definitely up there at the top...'cept, that one is Lord willing going to come out of the bucket and to fruition this fall!

And that concludes the questionnair for tonight (Oh wait! It's morning already)...Hope you enjoyed!!!

Now, I get that privilege of tagging two more of you lucky bloggers ;)
So....Lucia Morud from http://www.one-beloved.blogspot.com/  and Kelsianne from http://kelsianne.blogspot.com/2012/05/newest-on-hoppman-ranch.html I choose you!!! Good luck, ladies!!!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Hockinson Fun Days!

Early Saturday morning, I peeked my eyes open and checked the clock which showed 6:30 a.m. ...that was when I started to question whether the midnight bedtime last night was really worth it all! But that breakfast of pancakes at the fire station is just too tempting to keep one in bed, so reluctantly, I crawled out. Of course, being the first of the "troops" up that morning, Dad gave me the pleasant job of waking up my not so eager brothers and sisters :)

The dark clouds that morning seemed to threaten rain, but the determined "troops" headed for the van, ready for a day of fun at Hockinson fun days. (And in case you are wondering, it did end up pouring right before the parade :)

It had actually been a planned meeting to run into our friends, the Coders, while we were there...Which made the day all the more special!!!

There was an amazing K-9 demonstration that the policemen did...with their not so obedient dogs; they didn't quite have the command, "leave it", down. (Which made ya' kinda thankful that you weren't the guy on the lawn :)

I think as we all watched the "Life Flight" helicopter land on the field for the emergency demo, we were each thinkin' how we rather envied the volunteer "patient" who got the free helicopter ride :)

Daddy had planned on leaving before the parade, but there is something you've gotta know about having seven daughters that most people are not very familiar with, and that is that, from the time a girl is born, she has her daddy wrapped around her little finger. So, when seven pleading eyes turned to daddy, as the rain began to pour, and asked him to stay for the parade, daddy graciously gave in.

What could be more exciting to a bunch of kids than watching the candy flying...definitely NOT THE PARADE, mind you!!!! And there were a few adults who even joined the kids in the mad dash for the candy...But we won't name names :)

I won't lie, the tractors rolling through was one of those parts of the parade that I would have really loved to have been a part of :)

All in all, it was a splendidly delightful day, despite the rain, and we all agreed that it will become part of the Spafford traditions...(and of course well have to stay again for the candy throwing...I mean, parade :)