An attempt to declare the Glory of God for what He has chosen to do with our lives. A legacy to leave to my children in the telling of it.

Monday, October 31, 2011

All Too Real

So often lately I wake up in a panic that Trent isn't here. And more so because I can't remember him vividly being here, and "here" now means no Trent. I woke up this morning in the middle of some dream that he wasn't in, and I couldn't get my brain to figure out how to put him in it. I couldn't figure out how he would fit even if he was in it. I gasp for breath as I cry for my son. I raise my hands as I praise my God. I tell God I want to shut this blog off. I don't want to be real anymore, God. I just want to go hide somewhere. He says No. I don't know how, God, I can't lead; but He still says No. Grieve real, Terri. If you quit you'll only stuff. Walk it real. Fighting brothers still here make it all too real. Eternity will be real quicker than any of us can imagine. They're not ready. Have they forgotten that they can never get the morning back? Have they forgotten that even kids die and face judgement before God? Cherish each other; give your little brother the stupid whatever it is, help him button his shirt and find his Bible for church. Sitting in the church pew the tears threaten, both over the song and over reaching out and only finding four kiddos. Not remembering, and then remembering all too well. My outstretched arm reaches for God. Come now, Lord, come now. Some days I can't reach high enough.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Joyful, Patient, and Faithful

Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.
Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

Romans 12:11-12

It has come to my attention that there are certain people out there who have been waiting with much anticipation for a rip-roaring blog post after an amazing God conversation. Or maybe such person just wanted to butter me up for a free Aunt Terri babysitter. Either way, my brain could use some sorting. So, here we go, just some thoughts and observations from the past week on this bizarre walk of grief.

What keeps coming to my mind over and over again, after having several conversations about Trent's accident, is the thought: "You don't have to apologize for my Sovereign God." Right, wrong, politically correct or not, that has been where my brain keeps returning. Next week it will probably come up with another theological nugget to turn and polish and find God's glory in, but this week it is the observation of the lack of joy (or trust, or belief, or plain-old not knowing) in God's good plans for His children.

I can count on one hand (well, probably, my brain doesn't work so well these days to remember stuff) the number of people who were happy to hear the news that Trent died, even those who knew he was saved and therefor in heaven. And I know all the "we're sorry for you, we're sad for you, we're crying 'cause Jesus cried when Lazarus died" lines. They are the nice words to say, they are a natural response, and we should cry when somebody dies. But hardly anybody smiles and says, "Hooray for God's sovereign plans! Hooray for Heaven!" Even eight months later.

I'm scared of getting bitter. I guess that would be considered the required Anger Step that everybody who experiences a tragic death is supposed to go through. "Be mad at God, He can take it." The problem is, tho, I am having a really hard time finding that verse in my Bible. Doesn't that sort of turn the tables and put us right back on top of being in charge of the whole intricate workings of the entire universe rather than God being the one in charge?? It screams that my ways are better than His, rather than what Scripture says, that His ways are better than ours (Isaiah 55:8-9).

As my sister Traci reminded me in my whining the other day, "Have you forgotten you are a daughter of the King?"

Well, yes, actually I had, and a good swift kick in the behinder was what I needed. My Heavenly Father is the King. The King of all Kings, actually. He said so in His book, the Bible. And somewhere there is another book that has my name written in it. "Terri, my precious one, the one I love, the one I have good plans for; plans not to harm her but for her good. Plans to reveal Myself in her, and through her. Plans to reveal Myself in a way that she could never know Me without. Plans to give her hope and a future. Plans to answer her prayers for her son's salvation."

Grief is exhausting. The battle is real, the soul is weary, the mind can't handle much extra. This world is a distraction as of late. It's trinkets don't charm me anymore. I barely notice it's glimmering attraction. But God consumes me. Somebody mentioned the other day how sorry they were for me, how I looked like I had lost so much weight, was it the stress she wondered?

"My dear Christian sister," I wanted to tell her, "don't you know this God of ours is greater than even death? Have you not tasted of Him and found Him to be better and bigger and greater? Do you doubt that He would carry His children?" But as words so often fail me in speech, I could only gather my eight months of experiencing the tip-of-the-iceberg of God's glory being revealed before my very eyes by saying, "Food hasn't mattered so much lately. I have been consumed by God." She looked at me strange. "It's a good thing," I assured her.

And you all thought you were watching me in my little fishbowl. The observation of grief, especially in Christians, is just as interesting on this end.

And here's another thought . . .

Do we create yet another idol when we seek God's glory, or ways to glorify Him (as if we could bring Him any more glory by our mere deeds), rather than seeking just Jesus? Does our striving to bring glory to God through what we are trying to do for Him really become a works based faith that we have mastered to try to win our Father's loving affection? Somehow we have been duped to think that He doesn't love us enough to pry our fingers off of this world if He causes pain. I have seen just the opposite: the pain is the love of God. Pain is how He sanctifies His children, and how He shines His glory through them (Zec 13:9).

Just splitting some more hairs between the sinful nature and the God of the universe and finding myself revealed more of a sinner than I thought I was yesterday.

I don't know where this post will find you today; saved by Jesus, not saved, seeking Him or running away or not even knowing that you really don't know Him. I can't even begin to fathom where God chooses to bring these rambling words of mine. But I pray for you often, dear reader. I pray that the Holy Spirit moves how He said He would move~ through the Word, through honesty, through shattered lives. If it's for God's glory, under God's sovereign hand, and if it means eternities will be changed, then "Here I am, Lord. Shatter me."

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


If you happen to drive by my house and see me camped out at the mailbox, nervously pacing back and forth, scanning our lone road for any glimpse of the mail-lady, it's because I am impatiently waiting for . . . the first copy of my book to be delivered!! (Read all about it here.)

Yes, the initial writing and pouring out of my heart is done and the editing and revisions, and more revisions, and umpteen proofreads are completed (if you find a mistake, please do me a favor and don't tell me until at least next Christmas). Mr. Ryan from WestBow Press is probably doing the happy dance right about now, too, since he finally doesn't have to lament with me anymore about what shade of brown or red, or red or brown, should I choose for the title on the front cover let alone picking out page dividers and fixing backwards quotation marks.

The book is officially with the printers and I am expecting the very first copy any day now! Praising God that it's finished; praying for Him to be glorified in it. I may just do the happy dance myself when it does arrive!

I just heard that the first copy should be in my hands next week, and then I can place my official order and will have signed books available for you, my bloggy friends and lurkers! Please be in prayer with me that God will be glorified in a mighty way through them, and that He will prepare the hearts of those who need to hear this message of Him. And, as always, thank you for walking this walk with me. Terri~ OurCrazyFarm

Trent is in Heaven

Did you know that my son is in Heaven?? Heaven!!

He has seen the throne of God. He has seen the face of God. He has seen Jesus. He has seen the scars in His hands and feet and side. Trent is no longer under the curse of sin. He probably can't even remember what the weight of sin felt like. His name was written in the Book of life. Never again do I have to pray and beg God to grant him salvation, or to keep him from sin, or to wonder if he will make it. He made it. He's in heaven.

As A Child

For the wages of sin is death,

But the gift of God is eternal life

In Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 6:23

Micah and I were working on memorizing Romans 6:23 yesterday. I found that I really don't know how to clearly present the gospel to a six year old, let alone explain to him how our bodies can stay here when we die, and yet we can still live in heaven until we get our new ones. I couldn't quite find the words to explain the depravity of the human soul before salvation, either. Trying to explain sin and the offenses so great against a Holy God that an eternity in Hell is the only just punishment? Ummm . . . hitting your brother?

He listened, and the wheels of his little brain were spinning. He could connect sin, it turns out there wasn't much that needed to be explained. That squirming when I first mentioned the word revealed his heart. "For the wages of sin is death." God only owes us punishment for what we've done, like when Mommy has to discipline you when you've been naughty. He got that part.

And then the gift . . . "But the gift of God is eternal life." His birthday is coming up, so he understood gifts. But trying to put the glorious gift of salvation into simple terms, a gift that would last for eternity, a gift that I can't even fully comprehend, was challenging. To try to explain to him how God gave Trent that gift, and yet Trent is gone, and to six year old boys disappearing and never coming back home is a scary thing. But this is a good gift, Micah. The best gift.

I tried to explain (tried, because my brain has a hard time processing it fully) how we can be in heaven with God, and that's a good thing, fabulous thing, yet it means being away from Mommy and that's okay because you're with God. It's even okay for Trent. It's even okay when we all miss him so much because God said it was okay. And then I tried to explain eternity . . . forever, and ever, and ever, and ever. And how important it was to decide what we were going to do with this gift from God now because it would make a difference throughout that forever.

The best news of all is that it is a gift from God that is only found "in Christ Jesus our Lord." Now, if trying to explain sin and depravity, and eternity and salvation to this kiddo was hard, imagine trying to explain the very Son of God without misrepresenting Him. But I think he got it. On some six year old level, he got it. Jesus is good, sin is bad, eternity is a long, long time, and salvation matters.

For the wages of sin is death,

But the gift of God is eternal life

In Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 6:23

The Father has sent His Son

To be the Savior of the world.

1 John 4:14

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

And Then Came Facebook

I was doing okay. I was breathing normally. I was content to wait on God. And then came facebook. Just a couple of goofy pictures on somebodies sister's facebook page from two years ago that somebody else thought I would appreciate. And I did. And than I showed Rob. And he had to leave before we all saw a grown man cry. And I stuffed it, because people were watching and best friends of twelve-year-old boys shouldn't see a grown woman cry~ it scares them, believe me. Do you know how hard this is? Some days it's harder than others. I miss that goofy kid so much.


Fossils have been the science topic around here for the past couple of weeks. Over the years I have somehow morphed from being a "fun home school Mom" to a "get-er-done home school Mom", so it was good to break the mold and do something creative for a change.

I dug out the clay recipe which dates back to when I was the little girl.

1 cup salt

2 cups flour

1 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil

Enough water to make a stiff dough.

Food coloring if desired.
Then the kids found lots of fun things to make their very own fossils. I like being the "fun home school Mom".

I think we're studying gravity next . . . hmmmm......

Monday, October 24, 2011

Good Morning Farm

Years ago Aunt Traci had given the kids a book called "Goodnight Farm" with beautiful pictures of a farm going to sleep. I couldn't help but think about it as Cole and I did chores this morning. The menagerie of critters that we have sustain my sanity some days. Their very presence brings me peace (most of the time). Cole understands.

The calves reminding us not to forget them this morning.

The goats impatiently waiting for their breakfast.

The Light Brahmas.

Cole's Silkies. The barnyard cats and their too-friendly kittens.
The bunnies.

And the new little peepers.

Good Morning Farm.

Just Sustain Me, Lord

For you were once darkness,

but now you are light in the Lord.

Live as children of light and find out what pleases the Lord.

Ephesians 5:8-10

I woke up again barely able to breath this morning. Panic attacks, anxiety, grief, womanhood; give it whatever label you want. My flight response wants to escape, but there is no where to run.

As a prisoner for the Lord, then,

I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received.

Ephesians 4:1

I have no choice, the Holy Spirit continually yields my heart back to God. I am constantly forced to check my heart, check my motives, line them up with God's Word. I am constantly found wanting. My flesh screams out the injustice of this life and the pain it brings. My greed longs for it all to be about me; for it all to be my way.

But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it.

Ephesians 4:7

After the tears, I can begin to feel the grace. The things I can't say, I will have to trust the Spirit to relay. The real hurts, the depth of that pain, even if it's only the pain of my pride being exposed, are washed clean in the presence of my Savior Jesus. My fear of rejection is forgotten as my eyes are turned back to Christ and the Cross. He said I am His. He said to follow Him how He leads. He has called me precious.

Surely you heard of Him

and were taught in Him

in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus.

You were taught, with regard to your former way of life,

to put off your old self,

which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires,

to be made new in the attitude of your minds;

and to put on the new self,

created to be like God

in true righteousness and holiness.

Ephesians 4:20-24

I am not called to follow Christ as an imitator of how others are. We have all been given gifts, we have all been created in God's image to reflect Him in who He made us. He has prepared us individually for our very own works of service so that the body of Christ may be built up (Ephesians 4:11-13). When I stray from who He made me, how He has called me, how He leads, and try to copy somebody elses walk, then I have successfully failed to bring God any glory; I doubt the very intricate making's of the soul that He has made me.

I do doubt when the pain rises, and I feel the hurts and the rebellion in my heart, that God will use it for good. But somehow He does. After the tears I can hear His sweet, soft voice comforting, leading, admonishing, rebuking, loving; clearly perfect in exposing my deceitful heart. The Word that never fails, the hand that always leads, my God who always loves me and forgives.

Today, I am just broken. And broken is okay, because I know the One who fixes "broken".

Saturday, October 22, 2011

All Those Goats

Goats, goats, goats! We are up to 8 Nubian does and 1 Nubian buck! Not quite sure how they multiply so fast, and of course you can't sell any of the pretty babies, or every childs favorite baby (that is until next year when some of them just have to go). Five of our older does should all be bred and due in January. I am really hoping for and counting on the barn being completed this year, and of course, I think I also forgot what twenty below feels like at two-o'clock in the morning in Wisconsin in the middle of January. What was I thinking??!! But I like bigger babies in the fall, so here we are back to January deliveries. The three younger does were just put in with the buck, Jacob, and we will hope for March babies.

Yes, that's Jacob, Brenda! Isn't he a handsome looking guy! We sold our older buck, Cadillac, after the older does were bred and have used Jacob as the sire for the younger does.

Those ears are the reason I love the Nubian breed so much!

Those Pictures

In case you were wondering about those flying Micah pictures . . .It finally came time to replace the old water line from the pump house to the basement as we continue plugging away on fixing up this old farmstead. It is something that Rob has wanted to do for years, and this fall it finally worked out to have my big brother come out with his big machine to dig the trench for us. It was not without excitement, as the electric company had to pay us a visit as well when the electric line accidentally got knicked~oops. But it went well overall, nobody got hurt, and the boys had a blast playing in the dirt piles and watching the heavy equipment do it's work.

Micah didn't get to jump across the eight foot cavern like he probably would have preferred.

But, rather, had to be content with his little hill while Dad and Uncle Steve got to play in the deep trench.

I did offer to take some flying picture's of Uncle Steve, too, but he graciously declined.Micah's little hill was only a couple of feet high.

Oh these boys!