Sunday, December 29, 2013

The Moments

It's very easy for all of us to get caught up in plans, hurriedness, and obligations, and miss the moments . . . I'm just as guilty as anyone in my rushing through the day, but I was blessed this week with a "heads-up" on this very subject matter.

In preparing for the various things around here, from animal care, to the Goshen Gazette publication, to orders filled and shipped; not to mention my daily devotion time, and preparing for the coming tribulation . . . the day can slip into evening pretty quickly.  I've read so much preparedness advice, it's really starting to overwhelm me.  I'm not sure whether I'm more concerned about the anarchists or the survivalists!  What I do know, is I'm determined to embrace the life I've been given, and appreciate more moments.

This past week, here on the home place, I noticed several events of nature, in which I am so thankful, I took the time to notice, then to make the extra time to grab my camera to be able to share.

One morning the ice on the trees was glistening.  It truly looked like jewels were adoring all the tree tops and throughout the pasture.  My camera doesn't do the image justice, but the photographs do serve as wonderful reminders.   The photographs below are taken one day apart at about the same place, but what a difference one day made.

The sunlight that caused everything to be so sparkly in the morning, caused it to all fall off the trees by that same afternoon.  The ice fell from the trees like hail, only gently . . . I'd never seen or heard anything like it before.

Monday, December 23, 2013

The Community of Social Media

As I visit the news feed on social media, I see something absolutely great about this gift that we all love to hate!  We really get the opportunity to see how strong our convictions are, and those of others.  We also get to see idiosyncrasies in ourselves and others that may work great in unity or be a thorn in the flesh!  I am a socially awkward creature.  I always have been.  The very last thing I want to do is hurt someone's feelings, but sometimes I'm too direct or lack polish . . .  Sometimes I simply do not know enough about something or have enough experience to even ask an intelligent question, but the reality is, I want to know more!

There are getting to be some rather large "gatherings" on social media, but the factions are obvious.  I think that's great.  I would absolutely hate to give someone a false impression or to be given one.  I've read about people traveling across states, thinking they are going to "team up" or "community up" only to have it turn out very unpleasant for all involved.  What a blessing it is to have this segue opportunity!  Knowing I'm an odd duck, helps me to realize, everyone who isn't on all my pages is not necessarily wrong!  I'm so sad to see how many other "odd ducks" seem oblivious to this fact to which I've been illuminated.

YHWH did not use a cookie cutter when He made humanity!  I've even considered the idea that as the omnipotent Creator, maybe He simply never does the exact same thing, twice.  Maybe he's just too creative to repeat . . . That's not doctrine, just a thought!  At any rate, I've taken the bait a few times on social media, only to find I need to choose my words very carefully, in that I have always relied heavily on my eyes and facial expressions to add clarity to my often awkward words.  Eye contact does not exist in social media.  Even with skype, there is time delay . . .

I would urge you as we have been afforded the blessing of social media, and the prophecy of Daniel 12 is being fulfilled that "knowledge shall be increased."  Social media also affords us the opportunity to see where information is being rejected.  None of us know it all!  One of the first big red flags would be for those who insist their "opinion" is somehow, etched in stone.  Several of us are considering the idea that this next year may truly be the year of upheaval and scrambling.

If you are suddenly faced with chaos, what will you do?  I'm not proclaiming any more gloom and doom than the right wing anti-Obamacare representatives or the left-wing "where's the job creation" representatives!  We may find ourselves facing those who are impoverished but have lived entitled, there could be mocking marauders, aggressive anarchists, and those who have not prepared but determine your preparedness is their "blessed manna."

In the midst of turmoil we still have the commandment to love our enemies.  What are the tenets of faith, we will not compromise, as we attempt to be obedient?  I'm still seeking . . .

Sunday, December 8, 2013


More homesteads are being established, more Americans are heading for simpler sustainability, and many have the goal of going off the grid.  With that in mind, there are also many of us who have either been led to begin the foundational work for communities to gather and some who are seeing the need to "community up" in the near future.  As I read the predictions and time lines of the official beginning of the time of tribulation, I honestly do not know where we are in the end of days.  What I do know, is; I haven't been told to stop preparing and I've not heard that I'm ready for what will be coming in the end of days.

There are several folks sharing information about what they are doing toward self-sustainability, but in that there have also been a number of disagreements about basic tenets of faith, that indicate the body of Messiah isn't quite ready for unity yet.  I've developed a theory about what it will take for unity, as I've also had my bumps in the road with folks looking to be a part of this particular "preservation."

First, I think we are all still way to comfortable in our own knowledge.  It seems many of us have already forgotten how much our beliefs have changed in the last decade or less.  We also have the idea we can completely change our understanding, yet we are still clinging to old foundational perspectives.  If we've only come into the truth in the last five or six years, there is no way we can be mature beyond that.  That's not to say, the Great Spirit of our Creator cannot change us immediately to operate in us and teach us, but most of us still have more to "let go of" or unlearn.

I've been in discussions in which we all thankfully agreed to not discuss new month from dark of the moon to sliver through that approximate four day period, and there are those who insist upon lunar Sabbaths and spring equinox, and I almost forgot, the full moon/new month people.  There are folks who insist the seventh day of YHWH's calendar should not be in sync with the Gregorian calendar at all.  Then there are the "sunrise is day" folks vs. the 24 hour day folks with the day beginning at sunset.  Oh, and I almost forgot the whole spelling and pronunciation debate of the proper Name of our Creator.  I do believe we are to acknowledge His Name in the Hebrew, but without vowels, He knows we are calling upon His Name as respectfully as we know how.  I prefer to leave the presumption out of it and just speak the letters.  I've even experienced, although briefly, the debates regarding the proper "doneness" of meat and what is correct . . . then there's the interpretation of meat and milk in the same meal.

I'm guessing when the troubles really intensify, meat may not even be an issue, and milk will probably be for the children only.  We'll be too busy surviving to be constantly debating, and there will probably be different groups who do unite with the same convictions about new moon, length of day, etc.  I feel certain that at some point in the end of days, the people of Shaddai will find the actual enemy a bigger target than each other, and will hold Psalm 133 as a blessed privilege of which to be a part.  As I read Scripture, I see over and over, it was tough times and persecution that really rallied the communal lifestyle and caring for each other.  YHWH even told the children of Israel, when they came into the Promised Land and enjoyed the goodness, they would forget Him.

Although I'm pretty dismissive of those who are collecting all this knowledge and plan to pick up manna, it would be nice to see some manna fall, just to resolve the seventh day issue once and for all!
It is my guess, when we are enduring the times of tribulation, we'll see a real convergence of togetherness and the luxuries that cause the issues between us now, will probably not even be attainable.

To be in one accord regarding Messiah, and our willingness to be obedient to Torah, we will at some point come together in like groups.  Until Messiah returns, I believe the dark moon folks will find their way to each other, the equinoxians will gather, and the sliver folk will have their places of refuge, but the seventh day will have to be agreed upon, because the working of anyone is forbidden on Sabbath, so if Sabbath is not agreed upon, we would be causing each other to be in disobedience.

A Song of degrees of David. Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

I Don't Want to Sound Like Oprah

Being of tribal descent, this time of year can be very trying.  I certainly don't want to sound like Oprah and say everyone who disagrees with a person of ethnicity is racist, because well that is painting with just too broad a brush.  Racism comes in all colors, including brown and black.  I guess to offer variegation to a frequently used phrase, "Some of my best friends are white."  That doesn't change our history, however; nor do they owe reparation.  I do know what Native Americans have gone through to be considered humans in the country that was first ours, but I didn't pay that price, I just do some mouthing.  I am also aware of some of the atrocities that were inflicted upon my ancestors, but no one alive today did that.

I don't choose to celebrate a day when unchecked immigrants changed the culture of my people, after being kept alive by my people.  Seems a bit more than ungrateful, to say the least, but that was a long time ago.  I don't need to carry an old grudge to not participate in a celebration that doesn't evoke a celebratory concept.  I have dealt with those of European blue blood ancestry and to be honest, "Little Big Horn" is a fond image . . . but I digress.

I did find an interesting passage in Scripture in which Jeroboam made a celebration of his own choosing in the eighth month, which does align with November most years.  He even incorporated the images of calves in the celebration.  I can't help but wonder, since calves were being honored, if some sort of fowl was not the main dish, but that is only a question of my own thoughts, nothing to confirm.  Scripture very clearly states that this day of celebration was of Jeroboam's choosing, and not a Set Apart Holy Day.

And Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like unto the feast that is in Judah, and he offered upon the altar. So did he in Bethel, sacrificing unto the calves that he had made: and he placed in Bethel the priests of the high places which he had made. So he offered upon the altar which he had made in Bethel the fifteenth day of the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised of his own heart; and ordained a feast unto the children of Israel: and he offered upon the altar, and burnt incense.
                                                                           I Kings 12:32, 33

I'd urge you to read in I Kings 12 and 13.  Jeroboam is listed as one of the kings who did evil in the sight of YHWH.  Besides this year, Hanukkah celebration is to begin this week!  So technically, this year Thanksgiving is not taking place in the eighth month on the Biblical calendar.  Not to insist that others embrace ancient tribal ways; but I'm still brown and not terribly thankful for the loss of my culture.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

The Cost of Compromise

Sometimes we persevere the wrong direction and we endure unnecessarily, and sometimes obedience involves just starting over after the repentance.  Compromise is expensive, in the overall grand scheme of life, and YHWH calls it mixing holy with profane, which is very displeasing to Him.

As I walk through the preservation at chore time, I see all the improvements that YHWH has allowed to take place.  Some of the ideas that have come to fruition are just truly heart warming, and some of the ideas had to be scratched, or even worse "blew up in my face."  The ones that blew up though, were always built on a foundation of compromise . . . mine.  The blow ups were consistent, regardless of the parties participating . . . Once I refused to concede, the war was on.   The deal is, though, this is the place YHWH brought me to tend, so I can only accommodate so far before it becomes obvious that this just isn't the place for whatever the visitors have in mind.  That's why I felt so strongly about writing a short note to Benjamin Netanyahu, telling him to hold that ground and make no more concessions.  Concessions are just like drinks in AA.  One is too many and a thousand will never be enough . . .

Compromise isn't really about the other party at all, it's about a lack of faith and the condition of our own heart!  Compromise basically comes about for two reasons.  One, we just plain want something and justify and rationalize. Two, we think G-d can't pull it off without our amazing skills of concession!   Either way, it's about seating self on the throne of the heart!  Just an aside here, I have definitely determined that life is so much better, when self is dethroned.  If we belong to YHWH but don't surrender to His plan; just as with ancient Israel, He will use our enemies to get our attention!  Often we're already playing the compromise and concession plan with the very enemy He'll use.

Concession is agreeing to give something for nothing, it's not a trade, it's not a negotiation.  Concession is giving something that is rightfully yours or maybe not rightfully, but it involves giving it to someone who has no right to it!  Compromise on the other hand can be a bit more subtle.  Compromise is giving thanks and asking for a blessing over a kosher meal when you've invited the devil to dinner!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

One Week

Last week I showed two photographs side by side, taken two days apart of the same trees.  This morning I snapped another photograph, marking the difference of a week, between the second and third images. A friend made a comment the other day referring to the beauty of autumn was really a result of the leaves dying.  At the moment I heard that, a heaviness washed over me.  I knew what he had stated was true, but I didn't need to hear it while I was enjoying the splendor of autumn!   It was then that the foundation was laid for how we sometimes prefer the facts to remain distant from the beauty we are enjoying.  Although this is the natural cycle for trees, Adonai gave me a parable addressing compromise, based upon these three photos.

If I went out one morning to do chores and saw these trees just cut down or blazing, I of course would see no beauty in that, but we know from Genesis, Eve saw beauty in that tree at harvest time.  Hebrews tells us that sin is pleasurable for a season.  John, in his first letter referred to the lust of the eyes, which means temptation can appear to be quite beautiful.  Unlike Eve's situation, there was no fruit in this parable, just the the distinct fact that the changing colors was caused by the absence of life flowing from the root through the branches.   That's exactly what happens to us spiritually when we find temptation to be alluring.

 Compromise cuts the flow from the root to branches.  It doesn't happen all at once, and at first the compromise seems "doable!"  It may even seem like a good idea.  The compromise is just a small one, just making life a bit more "colorful," and the change is barely noticeable.  Sometimes we can even convince ourselves we are more useful in our compromise.   More outstanding in our message if we mingle the truth with the atmosphere.  We tell ourselves the contrast will be obvious and others will find what we have to be desirable . . .

 This photo was taken on October 31st, as the discussions and debates raged as to the participation of the holiday.  The plans and admonition regarding the potential outreach, the cuteness of some costumes, and the attempts to offer kids an alternative went on and on.  These colors are so breathtakingly beautiful, it's hard to remember that it is the lack of life flowing from the roots to the leaves that causes this.

Now, just one week later, the vibrance has faded.  The splendor the color is gone.  The evidence of dormancy is becoming obvious, and so quickly.  Not only have the leaves faded, they've become hard and brittle; many have fallen away.   

The season of autumn beauty is already fading.  For the trees, it's merely a natural change for a season.   As for we humans, we often do not see the subtle changes brought about in our life, by compromise, until the color has completely faded and we find ourselves in dormant desolation.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Choosing the Focus

This time of year just gets crazy.  The anti-holiday season was officially declared right after Sukkot.  It seems for a month before Halloween, the religious world draws their line in the sand, then discusses how they can affect all those who are still participating.  What they actually end up doing is sharing the same information ad infinitum with the people who are already not participating.

I remember coming out of traditional religion, and it seemed when people asked me what I believed, my beliefs were defined by what I no longer believed.  I try to be patient with folks who are just now going through that as well, but with social media, seems everyone is now a pastor or rabbi.  What I've truly noticed is I can usually tell which denomination or tradition the person claims to have come out of, by their continued fervor with their new information.  Often it seems our faith is based upon our own perspective, rather than the truth of the Word of G-d.

I've suddenly got friend requests from the same people who unfriended me last year over Jeremiah 10:3, 4 and the Christmas tree.  While the Thanksgiving debate is about to gear up, I have to admit, my Thanksgiving perspective only has a single Scriptural reference, so technically that's not based upon the two witness requirement of Torah.  My perspective of Thanksgiving is based more upon the same argument the Americans of European descent have now regarding brown immigrants.  As an original brown inhabitant, I am well aware of the fact, feeding and seeing to the need of immigrants will definitely change the culture of a society . . .  History has already proven it!

As for my Scriptural reference regarding Thanksgiving.    And Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like unto the feast that is in Judah, and he offered upon the altar. So did he in Bethel, sacrificing unto the calves that he had made: and he placed in Bethel the priests of the high places which he had made.  So he offered upon the altar which he had made in Bethel the fifteenth day of the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised of his own heart; and ordained a feast unto the children of Israel: and he offered upon the altar, and burnt incense.  I Kings 12:32,33

Thanksgiving usually falls in the 8th month of the Biblical calendar and since the Scriptural Feast Days are not observed by the majority of the nation, it does seem rather defiant to observe Jeroboam's feast day.  Every third year or so, Thanksgiving falls in the 9th month of the Biblical calendar and this year is one of those years.

I no longer define myself by what I "don't believe."  Life is just too full of sharing and doing what I do believe!  Rather than endure, enjoy, or energize the seasonal debates, I believe and highly recommend that we just "come out from among them and be separate."  I'm not talking about hiding, I'm talking about not focusing on the hubbub.  I'm going to focus on what and Whom I do believe in!  If someone has question or comment, they do make it known!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Is This the Reason for Native American Exemption?

I realize some may decide to consider this post racist, and that is their prerogative, but the simple fact is, our nation is very racially divided right now, and it's "acceptable" for someone to be for someone or something simply because they are of the same dark skin, but that in reverse is not politically correct.  I've made no bones about being brown, and I've shared many posts with a clearly ethnic bias, but truth of the matter is, white guys have it pretty rough right now.

If they disagree with women, they can be accused of being misogynists.  If they are openly heterosexual and stand on Bible beliefs, they are called homophobic.  If these white gentlemen disagree with our current administration, they are racist, and if they are against government programs, they are bigoted.  I'm very glad to be a brown woman in this particular time in history, and feel sorry for the white men who are taking the brunt of old grudges that they personally did not cause.

I do not expect every white Christian to agree with my views of early America.  Why should they?   I also don't expect them to try to change my views, but as we launch into Thanksgiving season, I'm going to just give this a rest . . . My point is, America is becoming more segregated by religion, by skin color, and by politics, and it would seem now, by health care as well.

Well, I don't want Obamacare, I don't want modern European medical advances, and I don't care for any preventative testing.  I happen to think my Jewish healer is awesome and if that makes me politically incorrect, I really don't care.  Rumor is, he's brown skinned as well, and by all accounts lived rather communally according to Torah!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

The Practical Green House

I now have two greenhouses.  I'd like to share how that has come about and offer what encouragement I can to those who are considering a bit more self-sustainability.  Actually, raising our own food, isn't self-sufficiency or self-sustaining as much as it's the original plan of our Creator, therefore our sufficiency is of G-d.  It's only been in the last 100 years that we got away from that plan.  For centuries, even those businessmen in towns were utterly dependent upon their bartered trade of produce and meat.  Making a living is about providing food and shelter, rather than just making money.  The transition has resulted in this:

The first photo was taken at the first homestead, EinGedi.  It was my starter place.  On just under two acres, I had enough pasture to provide most of my dairy and eggs, as well as meat and chicken in the freezer.  I also had a garden that was a little less than 1000 square feet.  This garden provided me with more than enough vegetables to eat fresh, give away, and can.  Since I began homesteading, my kids have adopted the "returnable jar" plan.  If they return the empties, they can shop in the fruit cellar!

I've tried various things in my years of working with a green house.  I am not really gifted with a "green thumb" so I have to learn and work at it!  The reason I've share a photo from the old place, is this green house was moved to the new place.  These are nice little sturdy buildings that snap together quickly and easily.  I don't take it down through the summer or anything, but for about $300.00 it's a nice investment, even in the case of a move.  

I don't use any electricity in my greenhouses.  In one, I use candles, and the other water.  The one I heat with candles, cannot have the added straw insulation, so I've juggled and struggled to find the "perfect" balance to hopefully, this year, have fresh produce all winter.  The one I heat with water won't hold as many pots and plants, since it contains a 100 gallon water tank.  Bear with me, I am going to make a point, as to how I came to have two greenhouses, rather than one large one.  These greenhouses are identical 6' X 8' with a 7' peak.  So although we are only looking at 48 square feet, shelving doubles and in the case of shorter plants, even triples the potential space.  The walls are 4' so basically you have 192 cubic feet of potential.  The next size greenhouse was 10' X 12" and over 10' tall, with the sides 8' tall.  That is 120 square feet of floor space and 960 cubic feet for nearly 3 times the price.  Financially, it's a toss up, actually, but for me it was the practical aspect of maintaining heat.  Heat rises, and the larger greenhouse would best accommodate shelving taller than I could reach, since that's where most of the heat would be.  Even at 5'7," I opted for keeping it close to the ground!

Right now, these greenhouses are less than $300.00 and if you eat healthy and can have any sort of outdoor structure, it might be worth considering.  These are structured nicely and so far, the one has provided me with not only some fresh produce through the winter, but a place to start all my garden bedding plants in the early spring.

I'll be including photos through the winter . . . It looks like we may get a real test this year, both economically, and weather wise.   


Sunday, October 13, 2013

Called Out

I just cannot help but notice the incredible timing and I don't believe in coincidence.  I'm not going to belabor the point because I truly believe the Word of YHWH has already confirmed it.  Our government closed through the same week of the reading of Noah.  I just couldn't help but take note of the fact that YHWH closed the door on the ark.  Y'hshuwah said the end of days would be as in the days of Noah.

Even if the government re-opens claiming business as usual, we know it isn't.  Trust is an issue or lack thereof, and if the debt ceiling is raised  . . .AGAIN, it's only a temporary fix.  Which takes us back to problem number one, the continued lack of trust.  I know many would disagree with me regarding our current President, I do not think he's THE anti-Christ, although he does come across as rather self-worshipful.

That was my opinion . . . Back to the Torah portions.  The very next Torah portion, after Noah, was entitled, "Get yourself out," the call to Abraham.  I realize these Torah portions go in this direction every year, but we haven't ever had a summer of rainbow pride flags waving at the Supreme Court, nor have we experienced so much lack and despair in this country while calling it "recovery."

Clearly the passage in Isaiah 5:20 is coming to pass, and we are beginning to realize the "Woe."  Although I do still believe individuals with ears to hear can still receive the covenant message offered by our Creator, I have no doubt the door is closed for national recovery.  As for getting ourselves out, I don't believe that is removal from our country, per se, although I can't speak for everyone.  I understand this "get yourself out" to be more of spiritual setting apart and a physical removal of dependence upon man-made failing solutions.

Seems all the government extensions of help and assistance are coming to an end, and we already know where debt leads everyone.  There was a time when a loan was obtained for something of tangible value.  When the loan was paid in full, there was something to show for it, but that all changed, and now clearly this debt is only going toward deeper debt and future slavery.

Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!  Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight!  a Prophet of Holy Scripture

Monday, October 7, 2013

An Answer to the Sabbath Question

So often, the concern about what to do and what not to do on Sabbath becomes a point of discussion.  A young woman just the other day was concerned that she had broken Sabbath to take care of an unforeseeable emergency.  I've been thinking about her dilemma since.  I believe I gave her a response based on Scriptural that encouraged her to not entertain any condemnation for what she did.

I don't believe it brings any glory to our Creator to leave anyone or anything in harm's way because it's Shabbat.  As I pondered this situation, of course my mind wandered to the idea of community and how nice it would be to have a "pantry" for Shabbat emergencies, especially since Messiah specified the fleeing of the end of days that we should pray it not be Shabbat or winter . . .

It was at this point, I looked out an east window and saw the strangest sight.  Now, this was a Wednesday morning, not Shabbat, but even if it had been, I would not have waited until sunset.  It just wasn't appropriate to take a "before" photo, but I have included the "after."

The cedar branch in the photograph had somehow become caught in one of the bull's halter.   I keep feed in these standard sized trash containers, and it is clearly longer than my steps.  I'd guess about 4 1/2 feet long.  When I saw him by the fence, I went rushing out back.  He met me at the fence, as if to say, "Help!"  I tried to pull it, but it wasn't budging.  I was going to head out to the pasture to tend to him, when the idea hit me that I would need a way to brace myself for this endeavor and the calf was definitely getting in a bad place over this stick.

I attempted to use the fence for leverage, to hasten this deliverance.  This poor calf seemed near panic.  It took about 10 minutes to free him, which probably seemed an eternity to him.  What happened next truly confirmed my point.  The moment he was free, as I was trying to straighten his halter, he appeared literally driven to walk away from me.  He was heading with urgency to the water tub!

He had not been able to get a drink with that stick wedged as it was.  I have no idea how long he'd been in that situation.  He was grazing peacefully when I made my rounds at morning chores, but it had been long enough, he spent some serious time at that water tub, once he gained access.  As I said, this was not Shabbat, but if it had been, I wouldn't have done anything differently.

And he said unto them, What man shall there be among you, that shall have one sheep, and if it fall into a pit on the Sabbath day, will he not lay hold on it, and lift it out?  How much then is a man better than a sheep? Wherefore it is lawful to do well on the Sabbath days. - words of Messiah

Sunday, September 29, 2013

A Peace That Passes All Understanding

The peace of living here on the preservation is an amazing gift from our Creator, until . . . I fight to defend it.  Then I lose that peace and whoever or whatever that prefers confusion incurs my frustration, which is absolutely derisory on my part.  Since I established this blog, I've learned so much about myself . . . and a great deal of it has been insightful, but not necessarily endearing.

I truly enjoy the life I've been given and the plan our Creator has for me, but sometimes I get side tracked, sometimes waylaid, and on some occasions the place gets infiltrated!  I'm not being overly dramatic here at all when I use these terms, nor am I claiming persecution.  It's more right now, of just a matter of spiritual struggles.  Even though I've allowed some ridiculous infiltration in the past, I still believe YHWH will use this place in the vision I saw four years ago.  It's just not going to happen as fast as I'd hoped.  On the other hand, I'm so glad to have some of the big hurdles out of the way and behind me.

This preservation will be a place where the inhabitants will be encouraged to be creative and use their G-d given talents and gifts, but there will be no spiritual compromise.  That is not to say, interpretative differences, as none of us has it all correct.  Spiritual compromise, in my understanding, is agreeing to something to "keep the peace" when it goes against my convictions.  But I've learned, I compromise spiritually, when I become frustrated with infiltration, and forget "the battle is not mine."  I'm not by nature, confrontational, but I will not be controlled.

Since YHWH gave me clear instructions for this ministry, I am not at liberty to just move on to avoid confrontation, and if I allow humans to control this place or me, I lose the blessing and purpose of YHWH.   Some of the stands I've had to take in obedience to His plan were heart-wrenching at the time, but absolutely the right ones.  Other times, I've avoided confrontation to the point, I finally respond wrong, and that's where I have to stop, repent, and redo.

I think the biggest thing I've learned is the revelation that what YHWH calls sin and finds offensive in me, is not what people have judged to be wrong, but upon my repentance according to His definition, the peace that passes all understanding returns and I am restored.

But YHWH said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for YHWH sees not as man sees; for man looks on the outward appearance, but YHWH looks on the heart.  History of Holy Scripture

Thursday, September 19, 2013

RIP Stella

Sorrowful Joy / Joyful Sorrow
I would have never thought about feeling both of those emotions simultaneously, but I have.  I've been reminded in my spirit many times over of the passage in the first chapter of Job.
. . . YHWH gave, and YHWH hath taken away; blessed be the Name of YHWH. 

Stella was about the best milk goat I've ever known.  She was always patient with the amateurs who came to visit and wanted to "try milking" . . . as long as you kept the feed box filled.

I was actually expecting her soon demise when I first met her at the auction.  She could have been in the herds and flocks of Cecil B. DeMille's Ten Commandments.  Stella was old when I bought her!  So old as a matter of fact, I was the lone bidder.  She was a beautiful Toggenburg cross, and although stately; was obviously past her prime.  I thought I was literally buying her to live out her remaining days in dignity, with "days" being the operative; but I was blessed to have her for over four years.  I know some people do choose to sell their livestock when they pass the point of positive productivity. Although I don't believe in selling geriatric livestock, nor do I make it a practice to purchase goats in their golden years, there was something about her that just spoke to me.  I couldn't allow that regal beauty to die cast away. or worse . . . be slaughtered.  I'm not a PETA vegan at all, I even process my own meat, but Stella still had more positive productivity in her!

All the way home, I hoped she would live long enough for us to be friends.  I don't make a habit of buying any livestock just to make their last days comfortable.  I can't afford that, financially or emotionally; but as I mentioned, there was just something about her that drew me.  I already loved that goat!  I now know, YHWH was gifting me with a very unique four legged friend.  I got home with Stella that evening and she wasn't overly friendly, but she seemed a little more outgoing than at the auction, so I finished up chores and was thankful for my purchase at minimal expense.

Within a few weeks, her countenance had improved.  She was still old, but definitely asserting herself to be Queen Bee of the herd.  Five months to the day after arriving here in Goshen, she gave birth to twin bucks.  Goats have a five month gestation period, so I never knew if the twins were a gift from the auction pen or Stella made friends with my buck quickly.  We never discussed the indiscriminating details.  Since she gave birth to the first of the herd that year, the first buck belonged to YHWH and I was blessed to be able to gift him to some beginner homesteaders, later that spring.

Stella was an amazing milk goat, and just knew her way around the milking parlor, or I should say, led me around her schedule in the milking parlor.  I felt so thankful that she had lived through the winter and then the double portion blessing of twins.  But that was only the beginning.  She became a part of Goshen, less than a month after my arrival, so her absence is felt by all.  I love all my critters, but everyone on the place, knew Stella and I were tight!  You know the old saying about a dog being man's best friend, well Stella, the goat, was this woman's best friend.

 YHWH had told me last year that Stella wasn't going to be here much longer.  I simply asked Him to not let her suffer.  Her behavior has been changing these past few months.  Her appetite remained good, maintained her cud, but she was just really showing her years.  She was staying to herself, rather than leading the herd.  She was a quality goat with such dignity!  I was giving her extra feed beets and making sure her water was close toward the end, but the morning I saw Hank standing vigil, I knew Stella's numbered days had ended.

Stella leaves quite a legacy.  All of her bucks were good strong breeders, and YHWH used her to bless me with two doelings these last two years, which of course, are part of the herd.  I even have one of the does her second buck threw that first year.  Stella leaves two doelings, a granddoe, and an internet business.

When I started "G-ma's Goatmilk Soap" business, I tried to use a photograph that my Granddaughter had taken of Stella, for the logo.  The photograph would not print with clear definition for the stamp maker, so I drew a simple caricature of Stella, that had to be simplified further.  Stella's illustration is part the registered trademark.  She will have a place in our hearts and bath time for years to come.
 I'll miss Stella greatly, but I was blessed with so much more time and so many more memories than I ever expected.
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:  Ecclesiastes of Holy Scripture

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Truth vs Tradition

We have all intermingled so much of the two of these, the sorting has become, well practically a religion of it's own!  It's almost as if the aim of some discussions are just to debate knowledge, rather than gain wisdom in truth.  I can't say all of us, but anyone with any history of religious training has received plenty of mix, and even those who were not raised with formal religious training, the mix is in our culture.

I've given a great deal of thought to what I'm to teach the next generations.  Let's face it, synagogue is basically held together with tradition of Talmud, and much of Christianity offers "the law of Pauline grace, as interpreted by each denomination."  One verse in one epistle, instructing the recipients to not judge about feasts and Shabbat has become license to ignore these wonderful blessings from YHWH, as well as ignoring the command to keep them, forever.

For me, it's simple.  If Messiah came and said to ignore the Commandments of our Creator, then He wasn't perfect and He can't be Messiah.  I believe He is Messiah and that He did not teach against the Commandments of Elohim.  If Paul preached a "different gospel" then he wasn't an apostle.  I don't believe he taught against Torah, either.  He's quoted in Acts 24:14 saying:  But this I confess unto thee, that after The Way which they call heresy, so worship I the G-d of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the Law and in the Prophets:  It is my understanding to choose to interpret his teachings as anti-Torah would be the "different gospel" he was warning against!

Now, as to simple celebration without tradition, I find that difficult as well, because special things in an event often do become traditions.  I've realized in my family, the difference between a feast and a regular meal.  This isn't mandated for all who are reading, I'm simply stating a way to make some things "set apart."  In regard to special meals, as in company or celebrations there are two extra dishes that are not served with every day meals, and that is bread and dessert.  Seems the grains are for special occasions.  As I read in Genesis, bread went with the fatted calf when Adonai visited Abraham, so there are special desserts and breads that I serve with the Feasts, pretty much exclusively.  Again, this isn't to establish a new tradition, it's to make the Feast Days set apart from my usual meals.

Of course there is lamb for Passover, but not sacrificed and there is unleavened bread.  Week of matzoh involves unleavened bread specifically, and angel food cake, because it involves no leavening.   The children of Israel were given manna after leaving Egypt and manna is referred to in Psalms 78 as the "food of angels" which has become loosely translated to my kitchen, "angel food!"

I also include various breads and desserts for the other Holy Days, except of course Yom Kippur, which is a Fast.  Every year though, I've baked a Cream Wedding Cake to serve to break the fast, symbolic of course of the Wedding Feast of the Lamb, but this year is different.  I'll be breaking the fast with a myriad of fresh vegetables in gratitude that because of Messiah's death, atonement has redeemed me back to the garden.

The purpose of these Holy Days is not to debate the details and opinions or establish traditions, but to set them apart and focus on our Creator, because He has said to do them forever, for all generations . . . which means, to teach our children.  

Even all that YHWH has commanded you by the hand of Moses, from the day that YHWH commanded Moses, and henceforward among your generations;  Torah of Holy Scripture

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Do What's Not Being Done!

Seems a simple enough statement, right!  Could be understood to mean "do what needs to be done," as well.  The reality is, I heard YHWH tell me this in regard to my service in ministry, and at the time I had no idea what that meant.  I'd already heard that I'd have a ministry like Paul's.  My immediate thought was, "The Bible was already a done deal!"  Of course, I didn't dare say that aloud, but now in retrospect, I see that Paul's letters were simply addressing new believers in areas of misunderstanding.  The books I've written have done the same, and of course; have been interpreted according to the reader's choice.  One daughter confirmed it over and over as she informed me she's read my books and has no clue as to what I am actually saying about relationship with the G-d of Israel!  So, I got that part done!

Paul's letters were to help new believers without a great deal of Scriptural knowledge, but had been inundated with social religiosity, much like what we have in the US.  So, as the book titles and information come to me, I write.  And when media became owned or it became aware to all of us, it was owned, I started a weekly internet publication that includes everything from pure Scripture to teachings to testimonies to political news to prophecy to simplicity to conspiracy theories and agendas.  Meanwhile; I've discovered a myriad of things not being done.

Did you know, I haven't found a Torah Observant follower of Messiah who teaches about YHWH Raphah, and walking in His health without compromise?  So, I do what's not being done.  That isn't to say, no one else is teaching and sharing, but if I haven't come across someone doing it, then my "circle of influence" has not yet been reached.  I do know there are those who trust their health entirely to YHWH.  I also discovered there are a number of commentaries offered on prophecy, so I offer my understanding.  

A new door is opening, in that I'm heading back to the community through some nonreligious venues.  I had no idea the door YHWH was opening when He told me to start some businesses.  I am just at the threshold of this opportunity, but I'm excited, and so far in three different communities, I've been told.  "We'd love to have you on board, we don't have anyone doing what you do!"
Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season . . . New Testament

Sunday, September 1, 2013

A Word to the Wise

As these end of days unfold, and the world headlines seem to be straight out of prophecy, I can see many of these preservations, communities, refuges, sanctuaries, whatever term folks will be giving them.  In keeping in tune with the fact that Torah says there are four kinds of people, Messiah gave the parable mentioning four kinds of soil to illustrate this, I believe we will see that in these communities as well.  I'm going to share a brief bit of insight I've picked up along the way.

Messiah said our enemy would be of our own household, so that means while America is telling the rest of the world how it should be done, our government is exercising more authority over it's very own citizens.  His words of "our own household," would also include those of our "household of faith," and then of course the literal interpretation of  "our own household."   Here's a very simple statement that applies to each of these situations.  It's not to breed distrust, but as we move into a time in which trusting YHWH will not be easy, much less each other, keep this fact in mind.  Be it on a national level, religious, or related, if there has already been a trust issue or breach, don't expect anything better in more difficult times.

I see three types of communities forming.  There will be the organic ones, similar to this, with the goal of utter simplicity.  There will be the more militaristic survivalist type, and the third will be aiming at something along the lines of a permanent "summer camp" with a garden and some entertainment.  Each of these styles of camps will also have two types, and the difference will be of a spiritual base, and those with a Bible base will be labeled as cults.  The refuges of organic simplicity, will be divided between a new age pantheistic belief and Bible literalists, but each Bible literalist community will vary on their literal interpretation.  Picture "Fiddler on the Roof," and the Amish.  Strict in adherence, but very different in interpretation.

The second will also be divided by beliefs, so in one survivalist refuge, you'll find a leader with a gun in one hand and his Bible, with his interpretation; while the other survivalist refuge will be founded by a guy with his firepower and his "self-sufficiency know how book."  There will be a definitely hierarchy.

The third type of communities will also have their similarities, with the marked difference also being of a spiritual nature.  They will, at least for a time, be more mainstream and probably larger in size and attempting to maintain a more socially recognizable order.  I envision this to be a sort of close knit suburbanite thinking.  There will be the communities with a basic secular perspective and those with a more religious foundation.  The "commons area" will be the difference.  In the secular community, the "commons area" will have a club house or gym type atmosphere and the other, a fellowship or study atmosphere.

As you've probably noticed, I've made mention of only three types of people.  The fourth will also be similar, but without the spiritual difference.  There will be those who have not made any preparation, but will remain utterly dependent in "sustained cities" and those who will become the marauders, as seen in the book of Eli; with one exception.  While we are being told to fear the Muslim Mujahadeen, there will be American murauders.  The difference that will be seen in America from what was portrayed in the Book of Eli, is these marauders will still be destructive, but some of them will know Scripture, and thanks to social media, will probably also be able to "name drop."  They'll be more than willing to say what they can, espouse abilities, or appeal to compassion, to gain access into any of the communities and refuges that have made preparations.

I'll close this with Messiah's word of caution, also in Matthew 10:  . . . be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.  

Sunday, August 25, 2013


Being of tribal heritage, I'm not as sold on guns as the average American.  I absolutely believe in the 2nd Amendment, and I am delighted to see the tradition of hunting remain in our society, even if no longer mainstream.  When I watch professed believers speak of hording ammo and stock piling weapons, I get a very uneasy queasy feeling.  Here on this preservation, I don't want to invite that kind of "faith in firepower."

In this time of uncertainty and world of confusion, I know three things beyond a shadow of a doubt.
First,  I know is Y'hshuwah is coming back, but things are going to get messy, very messy before that happens.
Second, the G-d of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is my G-d and His power is not dependent upon nor limited to the arsenals of humanity.  
And third; my days are numbered.  If I'm in the shelter of The Almighty, there is nothing any human can do to changed my numbered day.  So, if my numbered day is up, it won't even take a bullet and if it's not my numbered day, bullets are powerless in the shelter of El Shaddai.

Y'hshuwah said to be ready, but he never said, to scare anyone into "prepping."  I figure I'm supposed to be ready to help folks who didn't know to be ready.  Perhaps many would disagree with me here, but the more I read Scripture the more sure I am that when we are spiritually prepared, we'll have the provision and protection we need.  We won't be slovenly in our preparedness, nor will we put our trust in weapons.  One of the first Bible lessons anyone learns as a child is the account of David and Goliath.   David stood on faith, and ended up using Goliath's own weapon on him.  Something to think about . . .

Believers aren't called to "drop out," nor are we instructed to hide behind an arsenal, armed to the teeth.  We are told to be set apart and willing vessels.

Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, says Elohim, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,  And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, says El Shaddai.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

About Fixin'

This has not been an easy lesson for me.  I'm great with not fixing something, if it's not broke . . . but when something isn't working right, I keep working at it, and sometimes we just have to accept, it's not going to be right according to our own personal vision.  As I have found, sometimes the harder I try the worse it gets.

Now, upon acceptance of that fact, circumstances can unfold in primarily two different ways, although if it involves people and relationships, I'm sure there's four ways.  Back to acceptance.  Some things are simply beyond repair and we must either replace them or learn to do without them.  People and relationships aren't like power tools, though, so when it comes to people, we have a different sort of acceptance required.

I went through some major attempts to fix and kept trying to fix.  I kept changing me, trying to meet the expectation and I quickly learned, I was even more annoying always working at things.  I'm a fixer and I like things to work right.  What I had to learn, was my definition of "working right" wasn't based upon someone else's definition or approval of me.  Sometimes my definition of "working right" wasn't the right definition of working.  It's easy to get caught up in busying one's self and really accomplishing nothing.

Whether it's too many rocks in a garden or too many burnt bridges, sometimes it's best to just change our own plan.  Sometimes acceptance is more important than fixing.  As I'm watching the various ways other folks organize or reach out to each other, I'm seeing, when YHWH is in the plans, HE's the one who brings the working parts together, be that garden spots or community plans.

Sometimes our fixin' amounts to digging the hole deeper, in which case, we need to simply lay down the shovel.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

The Trap

I truly believe somewhere in the heart of man, the need for freedom remains.  The longing for a companion, a helpmeet is also placed in his heart by his Creator, but at some point in our culture, it became bondage that we as a society have avoided.  Sadly, we missed the real point and didn't honor the Instructions of our Creator.  So we've produced a culture of free sex, rather than a true sanctified marriage, which by virtue of separation of church and state, should not involve the government.

Marriage licenses just came about recently, historically speaking.  I now see spiritually what we did.  There is an absolute resolve in humanity to not surrender to an abuse or illegitimate authority, but we went the wrong way.  It makes perfect sense to not need a license or permit to engage in what our Creator ordained.   Marriage licenses and birth certificates are basically pretty new to the generation that brought the boomers.

My great grandpa didn't have a birth certificate, and my grandparents didn't need a marriage license.  There were witnesses and celebrations at events, not government certification.  Then there was the generation who made things "right" by lying their way through.  Many teenagers eloped with license in hand and lied about their age.  I have no idea how legal that is, in the long term, but I'm guessing social security gives them a bit of grief over it.  Then we got to the boomers.  The generation of divorce, remarriage, and never mind, we'll just see how it all works out.

We then raised a generation who goes ahead and makes babies, but will tell you, they don't want to "rush into marriage."  That has resulted in total government control over the couple and their child, and the couple doesn't even have the benefit of the license, or certificate.  In three generations, we've gone from being people because our Creator said we were, to being a commodity with permission to breathe and procreate, to simply being adult wards of the state caring for minor wards of the state.

Isaiah 42:8 tells us:  YHWH shares His glory with no one.  We traded the blessing of marriage and the heritage of children for permission to live in licensed containment.  Since marriage and procreation is our Creator's plan and idea, it's time to return to witnessing and celebrating weddings and births and simply writing the dates and names in the family Bible!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Not Knowing, but Appreciating

At one time, I actually envisioned the Chevy Uplander filled with members of the community heading to town or the auction or what have you, but together and conserving.  I've since realized there are a few barriers and a bit of idealism on my part that needed to be eliminated.  I had truly hoped that this community and land venture would develop more rapidly than it is, but that was shortsighted immaturity on my part.  It was tempting to compromise, but thankfully, that was taken out of my hands and finalized.

I've also realized, in one area, much like Abraham, I was adding my own idea to the vision.  That didn't work for him and it didn't work for me.  I have to shoulder a bit more responsibility of blame, in that I had the advantage of being able to learn from his mistake, but . . . sadly took the time to repeat his mistake.  I take solace in considering I am not as important in world events as he was.

I was blessed upon my repentance to get to enjoy one member of the tribe this year.  She and I had a wonderful time together, and I must proudly mention again, she was a wonderful guest contributor to the Goshen Gazette.  I hadn't been to a goat auction in quite awhile.  It was just a sad memory from last year and to be honest, I just preferred to put it behind me, but she wanted to go.

YHWH blessed our endeavor above what I could ask or imagine.  We have two beautiful new members of the herd and we have replaced the sad memories of last year by establishing a new good memory of the Goat Auction.  I am now realizing, this community isn't going to be like I first envisioned, it's going to be so much better!

By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.  By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise:  book of Hebrews

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Opportunity vs. Obligation

My granddaughter and I are enjoying our time together, but we are painfully aware that this opportunity will soon give way to the obligations we have.

Her insight is linked, just hover below and it should appear.

Monday, July 22, 2013

For My Descendants

As life takes some unexpected turns, and current events are somehow relegated to history, I continue to cling to the One Who is steadfast, the One Who changes not.

We've had our own twists and turns, here at the Preservation since it's inception.  I knew I was coming to found a community, and shortly after arriving, I heard this was for my descendants.  I felt it would include grandchildren and I've already been blessed to see a great grandchild, but as for the first generation, it remains to be seen, and as for how many of the descendants, only YHWH knows.

I am blessed, not only to serve, the Unchanging Self-Existing One, but so far, there is one consistent descendant, who just last night revealed how very much she loves to write.  And so without further comment from me, I'm honored to share Sadie's perspective of Life on the Preservation.

Sunday, July 14, 2013


It's a little late this year, but canning season has officially begun.  There is something very special about canning.  It, of course, is healthier than what you can buy, but it's stewardship and saving without hoarding.  Naturally, I eat fresh food for as many months as possible, and I'm even considering a few winter experiments for the green house, but the bottom line is, not everything grows year round.  If I'm going to have any fruits and vegetables in the winter, I need to can them.  Besides, the abundance through the growing season is too much to eat, even in small gardens.  One tomato plant can produce up to 50 pounds of tomatoes!  Besides, if I don't raise it and preserve it, I'll have to go buy it.

The other interesting fact about the abundance of crops this time of year, is even to try to give them away, others are enjoying abundance, as well.  It's those special recipes through the winter months that really make eyes light up and guests feel special.  Nothing makes for better neighbor relations than home baked bread with a jar of preserves in January, or a jar of special relish.  Although we don't visit regularly, the neighbors are all cordial.  Just today, as I went about my business in town, I thought, as for my journey on this earth, I truly am home.

For the time being, things are in place at the preservation, and the canning season should, YHWH willing, keep me busy until Sukkot, or perhaps longer, as it's early in the autumn, this year.  Not to mention, just one more year of gardening before the Sabbath year.  I've truly been seeking and trying to learn and apply the Instructions for the Torah observant agrarian lifestyle.  I had no idea how far removed our culture is from that understanding.  I'm learning.  Every day, I'm learning the plans YHWH has for me.

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says YHWH, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.  a Prophet of Holy Scripture

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Remember the Sabbath day

When I first considered a day of full and complete rest, I just didn't know what I'd do with myself.  Oh, I'd nearly always taken one day to "do less" for Biblical reasons, but a day that truly was set apart from my regular schedule was a more daunting task.  As a matter of fact, when I first attempted to "remember Sabbath," I made work out of it.

First, there is the social interpretation that if one is "doing good" on Sabbath, it's a pass.  So all health care, emergency work, etc. was deemed "doing good," because Y'hshuwah healed on the Sabbath.  But if one is getting paid, is that really doing good?   I, personally, can't answer that.  I remember one time, someone was unable to man a "crisis line" on Shabbat and although I usually manned it on Sunday, I was asked to cover that shift.  I certainly couldn't have imagined someone in crisis just getting the ongoing ringing, without an answer, so I told them I'd cover it, but I wouldn't be on the clock.  I still don't know if that was right or not.  Perhaps I could have taken that money and donated it somewhere, I don't know.  YHWH knew my heart, though, and so He's taken some of the guess work out.

I don't work outside this ministry homestead, so that's taken some of the guess work out.  Since I'm not dependent upon anyone else, I'm not causing anyone else to work on Shabbat.  Since my livestock has free access to hay and pasture, I just make certain the animals have extra water before sunset begins Shabbat.   Then Shabbat morning is simply a matter of opening chicken doors and making sure everyone is accounted for and still has water.  I've even worked out the schedule, so there is no need to milk on Shabbat, and it causes the nannies no undue discomfort.

Now, as to the other part of that Commandment.  Six days shalt thou labor and do all thy work!  That requires discipline and I truly believe YHWH expects us to apply ourselves to that principle.  One of the biggest differences between our present society's view and The Way of Life is the difference in the definition of work and the amount of time spent doing it.  Our society divides the day into basically three parts, and the week into five days and a two day week-end, now heading into four day work week and 3 day week-end.  None of that is Scriptural.  Six days we work and 1 day we rest.  Of course, we sleep daily, but the work isn't gauged by the clock, it's gauged by the finished product.

I can honestly say, I am blessed to have work that often doesn't feel like work, at all!    I'm quite sure it's part of the Sabbath blessing . . .
Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.  Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:  But the seventh day is the Sabbath of YHWH thy G-d: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: For in six days YHWH made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore YHWH blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it.  

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Special Time in a Special Place

Realizing YHWH is Spirit and omni-present, we don't have to be in a certain place to hear Him or be heard by Him, except . . . we must be where He has called us to be.  I don't mean to sound confusing.  We know He speaks through His Word, and His Word, who is His Son, said His sheep hear His voice.  I've heard His voice in various places.  YHWH can be heard while in the shower, I can hear Him while I'm doing dishes, and I can hear Him at my computer, on occasion; but I've come to a greater understanding in my own life. Although the geography and details may vary for each of us, I believe there is a foundational truth to be shared.

He is a holy G-d and although we have the blessed invitation to walk with Him, and He is a part of our every day life, He is not to be taken casually.  There are times in the middle of a stressful busy day that He beckons us to separate ourselves from the hustle-bustle and be alone with Him.  Sometimes it's a matter of our own "prayer closet" and sometimes it's more special than that.  I'm blessed to work at home, so that means I can pretty much pray anywhere anytime and not be stealing from an earthly boss.  That's not to say, we should hide our relationship with Him anywhere, as YHWH calls us to let our light shine.  We need to keep in mind though that we do owe our employers the time for which they pay us, and YHWH does not call His people to use our relationship to act religious.

In reading the book of Daniel, something touched my heart in a new understanding.  Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his G-d, as he did aforetime.  Daniel 6:10   His windows were open toward Jerusalem, and he was overheard praying.  I began to really contemplate that "open window" situation.  Were those windows open toward Jerusalem for a reason?

As I pondered and prayed about this, I began to see and hear special times and places outdoors in which I could just literally be enveloped in His presence.  I also became aware of His calling me to a special place.  Now again, this isn't to be so heavenly minded, I'm no earthly good.  We are to pray without ceasing and He can hear our praise above the sound of the washing machine and the vacuum sweeper, but He calls us to a set apart time and a special place to be in His presence.

I have discovered a sweet shalom as I spend time in the garden, and I've even set up a special little table and chairs in the orchard.  What I've realized, in actuality though; is the significance I place upon seeking His presence.  I realize this relationship is no casual thing at all, but a blessed privilege.  He is calling to us, to have a special place and time with Him.  Obedience to His written Word is how we show we love Him.  Obedience to His beckoning of our heart is how we know and show that we hear His voice.

So Abram departed, as YHWH had spoken unto him . . . Torah of Holy Scripture

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Bare Feet and Bottle Calves

Life on the preservation involves a few events that I believe everyone should experience.  I truly do think the world would be a nicer place if more children had adequate shelter, good food, and didn't spend so much time strapped in car seats or in front screens, twiddling their thumbs.  That's not to say everyone should live rurally, because Scripture does address the fact that there are both urban and rural dwellers, but it's experiences that help shape the choices people do make.  I live very rurally, but I have experienced the urban and suburban lifestyle.  I've lived in everything from an apartment to an old Victorian home, and I've enjoyed the beach, as well as the mountains.  I was created to be right where I am, at this time.

Not everyone gets the wide spectrum of experiences I've enjoyed.  How do people actually make informed choices, if they remain in the only thing they've ever known?  For thousands of years that made sense unless you happened to hear the voice of your Creator on a mountain, but otherwise sons did what their fathers did and their fathers before that, but that really is no longer an option for many.  Most of the world was agrarian and/or self-employed.  Times have changed and many people have lost touch with the reality of a way of life.  For the majority, the way of life is dependency, deadlines, daycare, stress, and doctor appointments.

I would love to be able to let children and their stressed out parents spend a week-end at the preservation.  Let a little boy go fishing with his Dad at the pond.  Every little girl should be able to get creative in the kitchen, within reason, and boys too.   I guess this sounds gender specific, and it really shouldn't. Watching a cooking show and cooking are two different things.  Watching a reality show is not really living.

Children should get to be children and know there are still choices possible.  As old as I am, I still like having a big tub of new chicks from the incubator, peeping in the extra bedroom for a couple of weeks before putting them in the brooder pen.  It's also wonderful to watch a hen brood, remain stuck to that nest for 3 weeks then come out of the chicken house trailed by a dozen little fluffy chicks.  When my grandkids were little they called the baby chicks "cotton poofs."

Every evening, chores end with giving a bottle to the calves.  They are getting big enough now, I have to keep the fence between us as they are strong enough to "take the bottles away from me" in their enthusiasm.  Chores begin with getting the milk for the bottles from the goats.  It's so nice, when it's all done for the evening to strain the milk, head out the back and feel that wonderful dirt under my bare feet and see the calves on the other side of the fence, just waiting for me to bring them their bottles.

Every child, regardless of the choices they will make as adults, deserve the opportunity to experience an evening with no television, and enjoy life outdoors with bare feet.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Fresh in the Garden

I grew up with a meticulous micro-managing mother, so with that being said, I don't talk much about my  childhood.  One of the things I did love to do, was eat vegetables right out in the garden.  I had to be, let's not call it sneaky, just choose my time carefully.  I wasn't very old before I figured out, if I was with Daddy or Grandpa or Grandma, I could get away with eating right out in the garden without it being washed and without worrying about coyotes peeing on it or rabbits nibbling on it, or all the other worries that my Mother chose to entertain.

Perhaps, the rebel has not yet died in me, or perhaps the fact of the matter is, everything in life won't kill you, and fresh organic garden vegetables are probably very, very low on the list of potential dangers.  To be honest, I'm more afraid of eating perfectly washed GMO veggies than I am of fresh organics in the garden!

Now, I wash off what grows underground, and I wash everything I serve at the table, it's just some veggies beckon, from the moment you spot them on the vine or branch.  There is truly nothing more tasty than a fresh tomato in the garden!  Did you know green beans are delicious raw and radish pods are the snack to enjoy all the way from the garden back to the house?   This first year of my strawberry bed, there is really no reason to bring them back to the house just a few at a time.  It's the perfect stop for a fresh afternoon snack.

As for worrying about what critter may or may not have touched the produce, I've got chicken tight fences all around the various garden spots, so I know coyotes aren't crossing that and I use natural bunny repellent, like human hair around the garden spot, as well as three large dogs that have access to the entire place.  I'm guessing if a bunny hazards the direction of the garden, he's got a lot to deal with long before he gets to the cabbage.  Then there is the awesome fact that YHWH has promised rain in it's season if I'm seeking to be obedient to His Will.  Rain is an amazing cleaning agent!

Sunday, June 9, 2013

It's About Life, Not Control

I've been trying to stay caught up with news sources regarding GMO as well as stay ahead of the weeds on the preservation, while managing the herd and flocks and to be honest, it's been quite an endeavor this week.  I find myself reading social media with half dazed attention as I read all the "get ready," "be ready," "grace vs. law," "obedience is paramount," unity, debates, discussions.  I'm not so much "disinterest," just maybe dissecting or discerning or perhaps a bit of disengaging.

As I read ideas, opinions, teachings, and of course they are all based upon the true interpretation of the Word of YHWH, I just had difficulty connecting this week, until the Prophet Portion this week and the New Testament recommendation which was Jude confirmed the questions and concerns I have come up against all week.  YHWH is good like that!

When Y'hshuwah said, "Be ready."  Did he mean hurry and get all your website promos and ideas posted before the internet monitors your house?  Or before it just shuts down, in general?  Or did He mean "be ready" to know where to go when it all hits the fan?  I mean He cares for His own, so undoubtedly there are people working their fingers to the bone to provide for G-d's people, right?  Or did he mean "be ready" to help others with more than just words?

As a writer, I value words, greatly, but also as a believer, I believe the passage that says, the Kingdom is not in "word" but in power.  Words without power and words outside of reality are, well . . . just words.  As I was reading Jude today, I noticed, just like reading I Samuel, there were things I'd never noticed before . . . Jude, in verse 12, makes mention of  cloud without rain.  My Native background gives credit to a chief who spoke to a religious charlatan making great claims.  The chief's words, "You speak of outpouring, you make your voice thunder, but I don't see rain."  Our words must mean something, because in the powers of the world, words turn into agendas and often times laws.

News from  Europe indicates all seeds will eventually be required to be certified and registered.  As I see the Monsanto power grab, it's not all just about GMO, some of it is about trademarking hybrids, which is a way around the prohibition of patenting nature.  A specific hybrid that is trademarked to a specific company is no longer a product of nature, and if the trademark is owned, the seeds of the produce belong to the company that registered the trademark.

Not only are we being poisoned by GMOs, but our very seed supply could be controlled by hybrid trademarking.  The food itself isn't dangerous, you just have to register the seeds . . . and you can't own them even if you pay for them.  It's a sort of rental lease option for your garden.

Meanwhile at the preservation, I had a very unusual experience this week on Preparation Day.  Some of the radish pods are now ready to harvest, not for seeds, just for consuming, but usually when the plant has gone to making pods, the integrity of the radish has diminished.  In picking several pods after a rain, I accidentally pulled the plant and to my surprise, with a plethora of delicious pods, the radish was also still intact.  It was with this discovery that I thought we truly are coming to a time in history in which the reaping and sowing is occurring simultaneously.

We need to remember, Jacob and family were pretty independently sustained before the famine.  We must consider without famine . . . or before famine, just how independently sustained most of us are.  Jacob had money to send his sons to Egypt.  What happens if we have no garden, China and Mexico refuse to deliver and modern "Egypt" won't take Visa, Debit or EBT?

Behold, the days come, says YHWH, that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes him that sows seed  a Prophet of Holy Scripture

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Effort, Energy, Efficiency

I cannot get over the time I've spent trying to motivate folks and the short time all the pieces have come into place when those who are not motivated sit down or move on . . .

Some people will wear you out and still result in NOTHING, while others are just waiting for their own opportunity while still others yet await the chance to serve the living G-d and fellowship with fellow believers. As the say goes, "it takes all kinds . . ." and each one comes with a teaching, because a heart that is genuinely looking for an opportunity to serve our Creator doesn't need motivation. Actually when first getting started, they usually need slowing down, I know I did. The conflict I have always struggled with is how to encourage someone to slow down until they actually know and live what they are talking about, without sounding discouraging.

I don't think I'm the only one who's done this, but I do hope I have learned my lesson to not repeat it. Have you ever heard something from YHWH, but it's "open-ended" enough that you want to fill in the blanks with emotional hope, rather than spiritual faith? I didn't get to the wise acceptance without quite a struggle. I now realize when spiritual faith comes before emotional hope, the wise acceptance is not a struggle at all, but rather just a knowing as we're going, that we are to take the opportunities we are given and use them for the glory of G-d. The reactions and choices of others are not part of our assignment.

We tend to forget that most people who come into our lives are simply at the same intersection. Some are going the opposite way and some are at their own crossroads, as well. Y'hshuwah told us it's a narrow path, and everyone that talks about G-d believes they are on it, so in my epiphany, I've realized, even if the words are similar, not everyone is on the same path, and those who are, are not necessarily in the same distance on the walk. Again, we are not called to persuade anyone to anything, but simply let our light shine and speak truth consistently. Some sow, some water, but it is YHWH who gives the increase.

The true culmination of epiphany and experience is the sad revelation that effort and energy spent beyond sowing or watering results in the use of effort, energy, and time that should have been more efficiently used elsewhere. All the human effort and energy will amount to nothing, unless YHWH has ordained the increase.

Understanding is a wellspring of life unto him that hath it . . .

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Sabbath in the Spring

There is really nothing like Shabbat in the spring on this preservation. It's a very special time of year as the green appears and the garden yields an edible bouquet just for the picking. Sabbath chores are something special too. Most of the year, I streamline chores for Shabbat, but in the spring it's an even greater difference. Most of the year, I do them early on Friday evening and late on Saturday evening, but I still open chicken houses and check on everyone to make sure there's nobody caught in a fence and everyone has water and access to food.

In the spring however, when the garden is producing tender leafy greens and the goat milk is flowing while the kids are still young, Shabbat is extra special. There isn't as much cooking to do on preparation day. Since we are told Y'hshuwah picked grain and ate it right in the field, fresh food that requires no cooking or preparation is still kosher for Shabbat! Although I do enjoy this privilege through the the summer, as well, there are few things better than a fresh radish sandwich made with challeh. A fresh mix of greens, with salted radish slices and challeh is delicious, as well. Don't even get me started about fresh ripe tomatoes sliced and topped with goat cheese.

I have the added bonus in the spring of not even having to milk after sunset following Shabbat. Most of the kids arrive between late January and early March, so before I sell the kids, they spend the nights with Mom and I separate them in the morning, so I can milk in the evening. I only milk once a day, so I never have to milk on Shabbat, but spring is even better. Shabbat morning, I don't separate moms and babies. Shabbat is a special day, even for the critters. The milkers get a break from the ordinary routine and the kids love all day with mom and the "all you can eat" option!

As I understand it, Shabbat is supposed to be a set apart day, out of the ordinary. Shabbat was created by our Creator, Himself, simply to rest. As I said, throughout the year I've searched and sought to do what I understand to do agriculturally in regard to Shabbat. The examples of that are few and far between here in America, but I've learned quite a bit and been able to implement it. The closest to work I get on Shabbat is opening a chicken door and holding a calf bottle.

To be surrounded in the beauty of creation through the season of life, is such a blessing and I consider it an awesome privilege. Shabbat in the spring is truly a celebration of our Creator!

And G-d blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which G-d created and made. Torah of Holy Scripture

Monday, May 20, 2013

A New Thankfulness

I came in from the garden the other day, simply thankful for being brown. I was brown before the days of tanning beds. As a matter of fact, I was in school a couple of years before the Civil Rights Movement and I was the darkest child in my school. I have always been "proud" of my tribal heritage, and pride may not be the right word or right attitude, but I am grateful. I like the fact that I don't sunburn. I'm grateful that I don't know what a sunburn feels like. So, as I came in from my gardening session, and was just truly enjoying basking in brownness, the phone rang and gave me something else for which to be thankful.

I didn't get into caller ID when it was first introduced, but now it is automatic on every phone service and phones, and after the call I received the other day, I'm grateful for caller ID. Now, if I can just remember to keep some glasses by the phone, I'm set! Caller ID isn't my big issue of thankfulness, but I'm going to be faithful in the little things. My point of gratitude and a genuine changed perspective did come through that phone call.

First, I've come to a new thankfulness when things don't turn out the way I'd hoped. Sometimes we just can't imagine what our Heavenly Father is trying to spare us of, when we are trying to make things happen. So, with the phone call, I became very thankful that things had not worked out the way I had first hoped. Then through the course of the conversation, I'll admit it, I got my feelings hurt being reminded of my past. It's taken me a couple of days to truly be able to realize this profound truth that I now embrace.

Once we are determined to follow Messiah, only the enemy will bring up our past. Now he gets help from various ones along the way, but a nasty reminder of the past, when we've been forgiven, is nothing more than the enemy trying to get us to fall under a spirit of condemnation. It's getting easier to recognize too, even in subtleness the intensity becomes intimidating, the analysis becomes accusatory, and the communication takes a downward spiral to confusion. In all of that, it became very clear that we were simply not on the same page, even if we were using the same words!

As I said, it took a day or two, but I now realize a new thankfulness that speaks of the grace of My Redeemer. When reminded of the past . . . I'm so thankful I'm not there any more. I'm thankful for the change YHWH has brought in me.

Therefore if any man be in Messiah, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Thankful for What I Don't Have

It's an odd concept, I realize, but there are so many things I don't have; for which I am thankful. When I went into ministry nearly 20 years ago, and then was called to this specific lifestyle, I realized I was heading out of mainstream. I had no idea how far I'd gotten away from the plan of the G-d of Abraham.

I am continuously bombarded with requests and complaints of something someone thinks they need. That began years ago in another place. I have asked YHWH before about what I should give, what I should donate and what I should refuse to be a part of. I consider donations to also be an "investment." So when I'm approached with a need or want I ask YHWH and myself, what do I invest in the lives and needs of others that will bring them to the place our Creator has planned for them?

I learned in my last town, I am not to donate money to people who have enough money for entertainment. That may sound harsh, but that was what I was shown. Entertainment issues are two fold. 1. Entertainment is not a need and 2. If someone has time to watch TV, play videos, etc., then they have time for a lucrative hobby or a part time job. Living simply leaves me open to making very simple statements and kinder refusals.

I share seeds and I share food, and I share tons of information . . . I'm not a wealthy woman and for that I'm grateful. My bills are paid, all both of them . . . and all my needs are met along with many of my wants, but my desires are really not of this world, they just truly are not. I cannot imagine, that I would ever consider television programming or video games "quality time" with a partner or with kids. I'm thankful I don't have a television.

I'm thankful to have the knowledge I have, but I am also thankful that I don't have an impractical education for something I now don't believe in. I think it would have been more difficult to walk away from mainstream, if I felt more invested. I can process meat from the hoof to the freezer. I can can and preserve. I am blessed to have the knowledge to sew, knit and crochet, even if I don't do it a lot. I am thankful that I don't have to shop!

I'm thankful, for now, that I don't have a romantic interest. I think men are just wonderful, but for now I really need to focus on what I need to be doing as a handmaiden of YHWH. When I was rejected right after my last wedding, my feelings were pretty hurt and to be honest I didn't know why he didn't just stand me up at the altar, but that's been years ago, and I have so many more interests that truly do take my time and focus.

I'm thankful that the life I am living and my G-d I am serving is so full and so awesome that if I had any more it would be a burden . . . I think of the prayer in Proverbs 30.
Remove far from me vanity and lies: give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient for me: Lest I be full, and deny thee, and say, Who is YHWH? or lest I be poor, and steal, and take the name of my G-d in vain.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Watch the Adjectives

We all have someone in our lives that can find the negative perspective to anything. Perhaps as a writer, I give more focus to adjectives, but they are powerful! There are two completely different images in your mind when you read, 'the tranquil sea was the perfect setting for . . .' and 'the raging sea was the perfect setting for . . .' Now if I'd have just written 'the sea was the perfect setting for . . .' you'd have still been picturing a large body of water, but the two adjectives literally created images a world apart. In the case of the sea, it's great to have an accurately descriptive adjective, but in the case of things that may not seem matters of life and death, adjectives can make a real impact.

I just came in from the garden and although it's nowhere close to the terms I'm using at this point, it's still a great example of my actual point. Think of the different picture you form in your mind when you hear these two words that can have similar meaning, but . . . Her garden was lush. Her garden was overgrown. Lush gives the image of big green thriving plants, probably with produce or at least blossoms in the foliage. Overgrown could indicate large plants, but more often than not, it's describing neglect or an abundance of weeds. Our adjectives should convey one thing specifically, but actually conveys two. The one things we count on when an adjective is used is an accurate description of the noun. The second thing I've come to understand about adjectives is how much they reveal about the person using them.

I've become acutely aware of people that always have a negative adjective to include. I made the mistake of allowing someone to see my inventory room. Now the mistake was not in showing it. As the post 9/11 Bushites used to say, "I've got nothing to hide." I was actually hoping to, of course, drum up some business by inviting that individual into that room. I was shocked and I don't why, knowing this person as I do, but as they looked at all the work I had put into establishing a new business, the comment was simple and amazingly insightful. They said, "Oh, this is your hording room!" Perhaps they are more television minded and not so gifted at vocabulary, but until that moment, I hadn't realized it, then I began to notice. Every noun, person, place, and thing, was described with a negative intonation or degrading adjective, or both . . .

Which brings me to the word of caution I want to share. Negativity can be contagious and certainly downgrading. Something else to consider, if a person uses negative adjectives and gives negative reports on other people, you can count on the same thing being said about you, behind your back. We all know if all we hear out of someone is something negative about someone else, that's what someone else is going to hear about us from that same individual, but I'm suggesting even more in this than the classic gossip. It is a serious character defect in the individual doing the talking, but as a society, we tend to prefer to believe bad reports as good ones.

Heaviness in the heart of man maketh it stoop: but a good word maketh it glad. a Proverb of Holy Scripture