Thursday, December 27, 2012

Life in Christ According to Charlie - Part 2


Last week I wrote about our entertaining experiences of attempting to coerce our uninterested critters into living according to our principles.

Not unlike our farm critters, we all have varying understandings of what life ought to look like and what freedom means.  It isn’t unusual for others to come along and attempt to force us into their “life in Christ” molds.  Rather than seeking to live in unity and bearing with one another, we argue with, criticize and shame one another.  If we can’t convince others to bend to our standards, we resort to directly or indirectly rejecting and discrediting one another.  The end result is living in isolation with our bigheaded conclusions.

It is pride that causes us to believe that we have it all figured out and that another does not.  It is haughtiness that leads us to think that others ought to live the way in which we live.  

Do we not understand that
Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall,
(Proverbs 16:18)?

Paul begged the followers of Jesus to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, (Ephesians 4:1-2).

Why can’t we get a grip on this concept which is pressed more than any other in Scriptures? 

While we may be called to live it out differently,
we all have the same hope.
We all have the same faith.
We all have been baptized into Christ.
We all have the Spirit of Jesus dwelling within us!

Until we see much in ourselves which we find difficult to forgive, there will be little demonstration of humility, gentleness, or patience toward others.  Our haughty spirit will continue to separate the family of God.  We have been warned, The terror you inspire and the pride of your heart have deceived you, you who live in the clefts of the rocks, who occupy the heights of the hill. Though you build your nest as high as the eagle's, from there I will bring you down, declares the LORD, (Jeremiah 49:16).
Brethren who will not communicate with one another upon spiritual subjects are as traders who shut up their shops and will not buy or sell.  Too wise to be taught and to idle to teach, they live isolated lives, like the man in the iron mask, without joy to themselves or benefit to others.  We shall all be beggars together if we shut ourselves like hermits and cry every man for himself…  Let us hold mutual discourses upon our experiences, make pleasant exchange of our knowledge and aid each other by our gifts. – CH Spurgeon
Don’t allow anyone to force or coerce you into their mold of what it looks like to “live in Christ”.  Be what Father has created you to be.  Fulfill the role He has given you in His family no matter how different it may look than that of any other.  The rest of us need you even if you‘re a “gangsta” like Charlie!

Whole-Heartedly,
Bonnie

P.S.  Please feel free to contact me with questions, thoughts, topics you’d like to ponder or to read past articles at: http://whole-heartedlife.blogspot.com/.  You may also contact me at:
             Bonnie Jaeckle
             In Search of the Whole-Hearted Life
             Diagonal Progress
             505 Jefferson St.
             Diagonal, IA 50845

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Life in Christ According to Charlie


We were recently given three new turkeys that are adjusting to their new home.  I let them out of their coop into the barnyard a bit too soon and they weren't sure where they were supposed to roost for the night.  Come dusk, one had it figured out, another was in the hay loft and the third was roosting on a barn rafter.  I climbed up to the hay mow hoping to catch the first one.  Much to my surprise, I was able to sneak-up on her and nab her by the leg.  Yes!  #2 was a different story.  We spent at least a half an hour trying to catch her, to no avail.  She inched her way into the corner on top of the chicken coop as far away from me as she could get and my only option was to climb up there.  I feared that if I inched-up any further, the roof would come crashing in, maiming me and killing the chickens and turkeys under me.  At the least, they would all be out free ranging in the dark, vulnerable to any hungry predator.  We prayed that our turkey would be safe through the night.  We were reminded that her days are already numbered, so we went to the house leaving her in the hands of her Creator.  The next morning she was in the barnyard trying to figure out how to get into the locked coop with her friends.

Charlie, our cute little pig is not only getting to be a big pig, he loves to rut!  He’s made several attempts to dig out of his “cell”.  We repeatedly filled-in his holes.  Ignoring our warnings, Charlie kept digging.  Each day… the holes got bigger.  Charlie had gotten so adept at digging that the holes were nearly large enough for him to escape!  Finally the day had come.  Gary, Art & I all joined Charlie in his chamber.  We circled around him and forewarned, “Charlie, one day you’ll be dead meat, but this will be enough for today.”  I held the loaded weapon and the extra ammunition.  Charlie frantically attempted to escape our retaliation, to no avail.  We nabbed him with a nose snare.  Gary held Charlie in place while Art pierced three rings into his nose.  We left him in solitary confinement to consider his behavior.  When someone ignorantly asked why he has rings in his nose, without thinking, I blurted out, “Because Charlie’s a gangsta!”

I’d spent a couple of weeks training a nanny goat to stand on a milking stanchion without resisting.  She was finally at a point where she’d allow me lock her head into the stanchion, pet her and touch her udder while she was peacefully eating.  Anxious to start milking, I was finally ready for her deliver that kid!  Much to our surprise she was either never pregnant or… she became “unpregnant” at some point!  So, we swapped her for a doe at Art’s that is obviously pregnant!  Goats tend to be somewhat stubborn, so we prepared ourselves for a bit of a challenge or so we thought.  Getting Doe #1 to Art’s took some coaxing, but the mission was accomplished without a great deal of resistance.  Doe #2 was a way different story!  She wasn't real excited about leaving her goatie friends.  And… to say the least, she has a bit more independent personality.  We coaxed her out of the pen with some corn and closed the gate behind us.  The path from Art’s place to our barn is …oh… maybe a half of a mile or so.  The corn wasn't working!

We tugged.  We pulled.  We pushed.

          She buckled to her knees.  She dug her hooves into the ground.  She laid down.

We talked nice.  We talked sternly.  We laughed.  We groaned.

She bleated.  She grunted.  She choked.

At one point, I was certain that she was smiling!

I glanced around several times to see if anyone was looking!  I was waiting for someone to say, “Smile!  You’re on Candid Camera!”  There’s got to be a better way!

Stay tuned for next weeks conclusion.

Whole-Heartedly,
Bonnie

P.S.  Please feel free to contact me with questions, thoughts, topics you’d like to ponder or to read past articles at: http://whole-heartedlife.blogspot.com/.  You may also contact me at:
             Bonnie Jaeckle
             In Search of the Whole-Hearted Life
             Diagonal Progress
             505 Jefferson St.
             Diagonal, IA 50845

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Adrenal Exhaustion

A young pre-menopausal woman recently sought my advice for a number of health problems that she has been experiencing. After having an IUD placed to prevent pregnancy, her periods became irregular and agonizing. Sexual activity was painful. Her emotions were a roller-coaster and her health problems were escalating. While it took some time to uncover the problem, she was found to be allergic to the IUD. The IUD was finally removed and she has since been placed on various birth control pills in an attempt to find one that works for her. As a result she is experiencing tremendous fatigue, out-bursts of rage, mouth sores, headaches, fever, etc. etc. After hearing her history and list of symptoms, I was convinced that her concerns are not all that uncommon. I hope others will find my response to her helpful, as well.

What you have described to me is indicative of adrenal exhaustion

(http://www.womentowomen.com/adrenalhealth/symptoms-adrenalfatigue.aspx -this is a good link to describing the problem, treatment suggestions, etc). The result is hormonal imbalance and depleted immune system. This can be caused by a number of factors, but most commonly emotional and physical stress (work, relationships, illness, medications, lack of sleep etc). Rather than rebuilding the adrenal system, the treatment typically prescribed by health-care professionals is focused on the symptoms, i.e.: hormones, nerve pills, sleeping pills and antibiotics. This approach only covers-up the symptoms and results in a vicious cycle. It sounds like you are also experiencing some pre-menopausal issues which add to the stress and imbalance in your body.

What I'm suggesting will get to the core and lead to healthy adrenals and strong immunity, however it will take some diligence on your part to accomplish that:

• Drink 8-12 glasses of filtered water daily. • Proper exercise (sounds like you are doing that)
• Eat lots of raw veggies and fruits 
• Eat organic meat and milk. Store-bought is full of synthetic hormone, the last thing your body needs!
• Multi-vitamin containing: Beta Carotene/A, Vitamin. E, B Complex, Calcium/Mag. Zinc, Vitamin. D3. I recommend Now Foods Eve softgel.
• Take additional Now Foods Vitamin D3 5,000 IU! D3 is very important to our immunity and most all of us have low levels because it isn't something that we can get from food. They make a D2, but make sure you are getting D3! The best price that I’ve found for these vitamins is at www.luckyvitamin.com.
• Drinking dandelion root tea daily flushes toxins from your liver so that your adrenals can function more efficiently. It is a bit bitter, but you can add honey to curb that. www.mountainroseherbs.com 
• Echinacea has been found to be a very effective immune builder. Dr Schulze (www.herbdoc.com) carries a powerful formula called Echinacea Plus.
• Flax seed has lots of fiber for flushing out your colon and getting rid of trapped toxins and is full of antioxidants that will help build your immunity. It is also loaded with the "good" fats that you need, Omega 3. Take 3 Tbsp ground golden flax seed daily. You can organic flax seed from www.mountainroseherbs.com. Grind it in your blender and then stick in the refrigerator so it doesn't get rancid. When moistened, flax seed gets sticky/slimy. Sounds gross but good for helping with elimination etc. The best way for me to use it is to sprinkle it on my cereal. I have a friend who puts it on her peanut butter sandwich. Play around with it and find a way that works for you. Drinking lots of water is necessary when taking flax to help it do it's thing! 
• Dr Schulze's Female Formula (www.herbdoc.com). I don't think you'll find a better quality or effective formula that targets female related health issues. To help you decide how much to order, there is 39 servings in a bottle and it is recommended that you take 2-4 servings daily.
• For the mouth sores, it should help to take three drops of oregano oil in a tsp of olive oil daily. Oregano oil is hot, so be careful not to get it on your finger and then rub your eye or go pee and then wipe! It is an anti fungal, antibacterial, antiviral very powerful "antibiotic" and pain reliever! Also, get some Lemon balm extract and rub it on the sores as soon as you notice that they are starting to develop. It should help shorten their life! You can get both of these from www.mountainroseherbs.com. 

*** Note – Use all herbs for at least 90 days before determining if they are helping or not. Having said "daily", with herbs it is always best to give them a "vacation day". Just as any other treatment, our bodies get used to them and don't respond as readily. It has been discovered that if you take a day away from the herbal treatment that it helps your body to respond more noticeably to the treatment. So... pick a day of the wk when you do not take them. Don't buy non-organic. They are sprayed with all kinds of chemicals that you don't need working against you! 

I pray that many are blessed! 

Whole-Heartedly, Bonnie 

P.S. Please feel free to contact me with questions, thoughts, topics you’d like to ponder or to read past articles at: http://whole-heartedlife.blogspot.com/. You may also contact me at:

Bonnie Jaeckle
In Search of the Whole-Hearted Life Diagonal Progress 
505 Jefferson St. 
Diagonal, IA 50845 

DISCLAIMER: The author of this article does not endorse everything represented on/in suggested links, books, etc. Each of us is accountable to God to weigh everything according to His Word. All content of this article is commentary or opinion and is protected under Free Speech. The author sells no hard products and earns no money from the recommendation of products. The information herein is presented for educational and commentary purposes only and should not be construed as professional advice from any licensed practitioner. The information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent disease. This is best left to the Creator of the universe. In all health-related situations, “qualified healthcare professionals” should always be consulted. The author deems THE GREAT PHYSICIAN to be most qualified. The author assumes no responsibility for the use or misuse of this material.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Trapped in Traditions

Thanksgiving Day is now over and people are gearing up for Christmas.  We don’t have too drive to far off of our farm to see glistening lights and embellished trees taking their places in the homes all around us.  Many are getting ready for their community’s best decorated homes contests, Festival of Trees and Christmas tours of homes.

 

I recall, as a young girl, that we put-up our Christmas tree on Christmas Eve.  We weren’t getting ready for any sort of contest; instead it was a preparation of the heart for what we believed the next day signified, the birth of Jesus.  While I have a very different understand of and stance regarding “Christmas” today, decorating our home was a very simple and enjoyable family event.  We went into the woods, chose the best looking scrub cedar that we could find, cut it down and drug it home.  In the warmth and quietness of our home we made popcorn and cranberry garlands to adorn our specially selected tree.  Once the garland was in place, it was time to hang the homemade ornaments that we’d constructed through the years.  Each ornament carried with it a special meaning and stirred memories.  As we tranquilly decorated, we reminisced.

 

Today, many people rush to decorate their homes immediately after Thanksgiving and the process is often anything but simple, family oriented, peaceful or Christ-centered.  Every room in the house is decorated to the hilt, a perfectly manufactured “tree” comes out of storage and every bough is embellished “just so”.  Children are often excluded from the activity because the d├ęcor is too expensive for their clumsy little hands, besides they aren’t thoughtful enough in where they place the decorations on the tree!  If children are included at all, the entire process often and unnecessarily becomes a nerve-wracking fiasco at which Jesus is never mentioned.

 

A number of years ago, I took our son, Jake and some of his friends to a concert in the city.  Afterwards, we drove to the “rich” section of town to see all the Christmas lights.  The homes were enormous and the decorations were elaborate!  As we meandered through the avenues and cul-de-sacs, we “oohed and aahed” over all the pomp.  Eventually, we came to a place that was absolutely astounding.  It looked like a park with a highly-structured fence all around it.  Beyond all the spectacular yard decorations, we could see a massive building off in the distance. 

 

The towering ornate gate at the entrance was opened

and we followed the car in front of us in.

As we drove through,

one of the teens noticed that the gate was closing behind us and squealed,

“Oh my gosh!  We’re trapped!”

 

The further we made our way up the long drive, the more we realized that the gate was not open for the public, but had been purposely unlocked for the car in front of us.  We just happened to be there at the “right” time.  This was not a park, it was a private residence!  I couldn’t turn around and it wouldn’t have helped if I could.  I had no way to open the gate.  My only choice was to meander up the lengthy drive to the mansion in front of us.  Once they realized what I was going to do the teenagers were beside themselves, yet giggling all the way, “I can’t believe we are doing this!”  “This is so embarrassing!”  “You are really going to do this aren’t you?”

 

I drove under the graceful canopy, got out of the car, walked up to the extravagant front door and rang the door bell.  I could hear merriment of a party coming from inside.  It seemed like forever before anyone responded.  Finally a sophisticated, middle-aged man came to the door holding a toddler dressed in her Christmas best.  While I wasn’t invited inside, I can’t even begin to describe the splendor that I saw from the door step!  The one thing that stands out in my mind is the four foot tall luxuriant Santas which lined the steps of the spiraling staircase seeming to rise to the heavens!  Each St Nick was dressed according to customs from all over the world.  I wonder if the little girl helped to set them into place.

 

Christmas traditions often leave us feeling as though we are trapped in a circle drive, surrounded by unfathomable materialism, with no way out.  While the obtrusive gate is intimidating, turning around and driving back through it is an option.  Just ask the “Owner” and the gate will be opened!  There is no man-made tradition worth the freedom that you’ll experience when you drive through to the other side.  While others along for the ride may not understand the direction that you’ve chosen, often they are just waiting for someone else to make the first turn!

 

Whole-Heartedly,

Bonnie

 

P.S.  Please feel free to contact me with questions, thoughts, topics you’d like to ponder or to read past articles at: http://whole-heartedlife.blogspot.com/.  You may also contact me at:

             Bonnie Jaeckle

             In Search of the Whole-Hearted Life

             Diagonal Progress

             505 Jefferson St.

             Diagonal, IA 50845