In Huntsville, Alabama, 2020 brought great torrents of rain. Glenn and I telephoned 9-1-1 from our car last night to report some pretty serious flash flooding across streets that were still open and being treacherously navigated. As he made the call, on this evening in which the last of our sweet holiday company had flown back home, I thought “This is a pretty apropos ending to a torrentially blessed, but chaotic season. All we need now is to be stuck in this raging deluge.”
But they say, “When it comes in like a lion, it goes out like a lamb.” Maybe there will be some “lamb” days—some gentle and serene days in 2020 for work and contemplation and especially for Digging Deep (https://thecolleyhouse.org/digging-deep). I’m ready to put the house back together and search for some semblance of routine. Remember, the December podcast is next Tuesday night!
We had a ton of fun company in this house (that included a suicidal squirrel…https://thecolleyhouse.org/and-prior-to-the-lesson-this-morning), a lightning storm (that took out our largest backyard tree, our internet, Roku, modem, router and a window in the cabin), a virus that hijacked our Christmas morning plans, and one awful day when they could not hear a heartbeat from my grandchild that’s still in the womb.
But you know, there’s always that blessing trail (https://thecolleyhouse.org/the-blessing-trail). All of our children, viruses and all, were here with us. (My husband is going to speak at a baby’s funeral this very morning.) We are wealthy enough to be extremely dependent on our internet. The most stressful part of its absence was that I was falling behind on my Digging Deep research and my communication with the greatest group of encouraging sisters in the world! My husband, who was standing only a few feet from that giant oak tree, is alive and well (although his hearing may be a little worse for that wear)! Our baby was just hiding the heartbeat, after all, and went galloping like a champ during the next, more intensive sonogram. The man, who came to work on our internet, took the time to talk with me about God’s plan of salvation, about baptism for the remission of sins, and he even tested the internet by going to our West Huntsville page. He says, “My wife and I will definitely be visiting your church. It sounds like you are teaching just the Bible and that is a rare thing.” The blessing trail, now and always, just goes on and on. He is so good.
He is good, not just to those like me who are in a season of extreme prosperity in so many ways. He is good, even to those who are suffering horrible reversals today. It’s my prayer during 2020, that I can behave, EVERY day, as though I really believe He is glorious and good. When there is stress and when there is peace; when there is encouragement and when there is sharp criticism; when there is devastation and when there is exultant joy; when there is danger and when there is safety—may I constantly be reminded of his supremacy and ultimate blessing in my life as His faithful daughter (Romans 8:28).
I know the Digging Deep study will help me to keep my mind focused in exactly this way. I’m going to invite someone to do this study with us this very week. I hope you will, too. As women are making their New Year’s resolutions, it’s a great time to ask them to jump in and make this a deeper year in His Word.
Finally, I’m going to share a few more entries from the “Merry Music” contest that concluded over the holidays (https://thecolleyhouse.org/tch-contest-the-merrys-in-the-music), because they will make you smile. But mostly, because I said I would. Have a great first week of a brand new decade. (That’s a sentence we’ll not be saying once we embark on eternity.)
In Oklahoma City there is a jewelry store that has their anniversary sale each December. Every year they have ads with the same jingle they’ve used for decades. One year we were singing Christmas carols and one of my sisters started singing the jingle. We all knew it so just joined in. Where I live now I no longer get OKC channels but thanks to the internet I can hear it if I want. I’ve included a link to a video of the jingle.
Have a wonderful holiday season!
Betty Charlene Walker
Music has always been a huge part of my life and I’m so excited to have passed that down to my girls. We LOVE to sing! I’ve been told I sing too loud during worship (I can’t help it! I love to sing praises to God) and both of my girls sing loudly and proudly the songs they know (and some they don’t know!). We sing in the car, at home, really whenever and wherever the music hits us. I’ve always been on the shyer side, as is my youngest, but my Lizzie Jane definitely did not get that trait. She is very animated and dramatic when it comes to singing, especially if she has an audience. Since her first school program, I’ve eagerly anticipated with slight dread what she might do, whether it be sitting down during her performance to take off her shoes or taking off clothes because she was too hot on stage. This year for her Christmas concert, however, we were prepared. We talked about singing but not shouting, picked out comfortable shoes, bought a dress with short sleeves, made sure she was well rested, and practiced at home. She was really excited and couldn’t wait to get on stage. I watched her wiggle and dance in her seat, along with her classmates, and quietly sing along with the younger classes while they performed, anticipating her turn. She walked up on stage and got in her selected spot just like they practiced and gave us a big, sweet smile, the picture of pure innocence. You might be thinking as you read this, that for once in her life she got stage fright or became camera shy, but you would be wrong! The music came on for a “rock” version of “Up on the Housetop” and my girl started head banging and doing moves I’ve never seen her do before! Her voice could be heard above most of her classmates as she proudly sang and danced through the song. Laughter rang throughout the audience as my very dramatic 6 yr old performed through their next song “If I were a Reindeer”. Several people told me afterwards they could see her in high school drama production when she’s older and they are probably right. Lizzie asked me if I was surprised about the different way they sang “Up on the Housetop” and when I told her I loved it, she gave me a big hug and said “Me too, Momma! It was so much fun! I can’t wait till next year!” Since she always manages to surprise me, I wonder what she’ll do next?! 🤷🏻♀️
P.S. I have video of her performing both songs on Facebook but they are too large to email. So if you want a giggle or need your spirits lifted check out my FB page to see her performance. (And you really should go watch her!… CC)
Hey Cindy, I am new to the Digging Deep study this year and was introduced to it by Mitzi Jackson. I have been so blessed by it and your blog. Thank you for all you do! I even had to listen to the Mary, Martha and Lazarus lesson after reading the squirrel story. It was much needed as I tend to be a Martha.
My story involves my soon to be three year old grandson Weston. I have always enjoyed getting into the holiday spirit early and have often been teased about it by my children.
They even hid my Dolly Parton Christmas CD one year. Well, this year I started early and Weston learned every word of Jingle Bells the first day I played it, even the second lesser known verse. Well, it wasn’t long until my daughter called and said, “ Really mom! Teaching him Jingle Bells before Halloween?” It’s the gift that keeps on giving!
Have a blessed holiday season with your family!
Love and Prayers,
Our 2 girls started taking piano lessons in grade school. They were excited learning a Christmas song that year and we were all going to gather around the piano and sing on Christmas Eve. The tree was decorated. Stockings were hung. The fire was burning and the wood crackling. They took their seat on the bench. We were ready, eagerly anticipating. And it began D…E….C…K…. T….. H….E….H…A…L…L..S…. W…..I….T…H….B….O….U…..G….H….S. You get the picture . Each note was very slow and the accompanying singers followed along with much merriment
Those little girls are 49 and 48 yrs old now. We still laugh and remember that year. One daughter is a special ed teacher in South Carolina. She taught piano and violin to students for years. Our other daughter got a music scholarship and has a beautiful singing voice. She works for the government. Our 4 grandchildren are all very musically talented. It all began one Christmas Eve singing and playing Deck the Halls on an old upright piano costing $100 surrounded by lots of love.