Saturday, July 27, 2019

Just Do It

No, this is not a Nike commercial. Just sayin'.

If you'd told me a year ago that by the time July rolled around again, I'd be going to camp as a counselor, well . . . I probably wouldn't have believed you. I'm an introvert—we don't like stepping out and doing new things, especially where there's people involved.

So when my sister asked me a couple months ago (okay, no, begged is more like it) to be a counselor at camp, well . . . my initial reaction was no way. No way was I going to go ride herd on a bunch of kids. No way was I going to sleep in a room with 10 other people (not to mention share one bathroom with that many). No way was I going to put that much responsibility on myself when the only remotely similar thing I'd done before was vacation Bible school at church with about 20 kids total.

But something kept me from outright telling her no. I put it off: "You know that's not my thing." "I don't want to." "What's it worth to ya?" "I'd need more information about it first." And I was convinced that stalling long enough would eventually put me past the deadline and it'd be too late to send in my form. Smart, right? I wickedly kept her hopes up (or we could say I was polite and didn't tell her no right away), and impatiently waited for that deadline to arrive.

And then I prayed about it.

You know when sometimes, God tells you to do things that you really don't wanna do? Yeah. The more I prayed about it, the more I felt Him telling me to go to camp. And I wasn't really thrilled with Him at the moment.

So I talked to someone about it, asked questions, and was given the form.

And I went to camp this past week.

I was slightly freaked out; I didn't know what I was doing; what if I did something completely wrong? I was the only counselor for 10 junior high girls; what if they would constantly try to bend the rules? I hated being around crowds; what if all the people freaked me out? I was a picky eater; what if we always had food that I didn't like? (Yes, that last one is totally a legit fear)

So, I'm not going to go into detail and describe every detail about the week. Because that would take forever. BUT. Let's just say that it was both worst and better than I expected. But I will give you some  highlights.

-My first night there, I met a lady who happened to be the sister-in-law of a pastor in our area.
-Said lady (Sara) happened to be a counselor in the cabin adjoining mine, along with another lady, and they both kinda took me under their wings.
-I became super homesick and overwhelmed (I've never even been to camp as a camper before, y'all!) and Sara sweetly offered to trade places with one of my campers.
-The food was amazing. Like, no complaints.
-All the girls in my cabin were epic. I never had to worry about any of them trying to sneak one past me, or about them being anywhere they weren't supposed to be.
-There were so many things to keep all the kids occupied, we were rarely all grouped together at the same time.

What are some things I learned this week? Well . . .
-Going for a week without social media is completely doable. Don't freak out about it, peeps.
-Energizers (Star Trekking, anyone?) are so. much. FUN.
-Counselors learn just as much during chapel as the kids.
-Checking your emails after a week can be overwhelming.
-Carpet ball is actually addictive.
-I like bananas . . . I know that mangos are sweet . . . (c'mon, ya'll, if you know what I'm talking about, let me know!!)
-I never want to go another week without reading more that three pages.
-There's nothing like praising the Creator through amazing music with a hundred other people.

MORAL OF THE STORY: When God tells you to do something, just do it. Even if you don't know why, and you're still not sure why it happened after it's over. Because everything is for a purpose, even if you don't know what that purpose is. He will work through your fear, and He'll work through your happiness. He will work through your tears, and He will work through your smiles. He will work through the rain, and He will work through the sunshine.

Trust Him. In the right conditions, mustard seeds grow to be trees that withstand anything. Water your faith, surround yourself with the right conditions, and watch it grow. (I can't take credit for those lines, though . . . Pastor Bob's messages were pretty epic.)

Do it even when you don't want to, even when it's painful. Because your trust and faith in Him grow best when you're not in your comfort zone.

Do I know why God called me to go to camp? Not really. Maybe it was so I could give hugs to homesick girls. Maybe it was simply to stretch myself. Maybe it was for a reason that I'll never know about. But whatever the reason—I'm glad I went. It was an experience I won't soon forget.

Will I go back next year? God only knows. I have to admit that camp wasn't really my thing. But sometimes God calls us to do things that we aren't comfortable doing.

And that's when we need to take that leap of faith and just do it.

Saturday, July 20, 2019

Faith Like That

I could see his hands were shaking
As he took the microphone
He said my little boy's not gone
He’s just gone home

Then opened up his Bible
And read from John 14
He said, I'm here to celebrate his life
Not grieve

It hurts how bad I miss him
But what better place to be?
He’s with his other Father
Who loves him more than me

I want to have faith like that
Let it be who I am
I want to see the bigger picture
And trust it’s in God’s hands
I want have faith
I want to faith like that

Well I walked up to him after
Not real sure what to do
I hugged him,
But wondered who was hugging who?

Before I could say I’m sorry
He said, It’s gonna be alright
And as we stood there
I could almost hear Him smile

I thought I could give him comfort
Yeah, I thought I believed
I went there for him
But, he was there for me

I want to have faith like that
Let it be who I am
I want to see the bigger picture
And trust it’s in God’s hands
I want have faith
I want to faith like that

I want to walk the walk
Not just talk the talk
I want to make it who I am

I want have faith
Yea I want to faith like that

Saturday, July 13, 2019

For the Love of Instrumentals

How are y'all doing on this fine Saturday? (Or at least, I'm assuming it's a fine Saturday? I don't know, I'm scheduling this post, haha) It seems like just yesterday that I wrote my last post. (Don't forget to submit your farming questions, by the way!)

Anyway, today I'm here talking about instrumental music. Because it's far too underappreciated. I love instrumentals—just ask my sis. Actually, I'm listening to one just as I speak (or type . . . ?)!

There are so many different kinds of instrumentals. Orchestral, classical, and bluegrass, among others . . . but today I'm gonna talk about my favorites. ;)

So first off, lemme just give you a couple of artists: Andy Leftwich and Craig Duncan.
Okay, I'm in love with their songs. Andy Leftwich is so talented (I can only hope to play mandolin like he does some day . . . ), and his songs are sooooo catchy! Here's a couple of my favorites:

Why do I love Craig Duncan's music? Maybe it's because he does such a variety of genres and songs! I mean, he does Celtic music (for which I have a minor obsession)

And bluegrass

And even songs from the Civil War (from both the North and South)

And he's got several tribute albums, but I'll just share a couple from his Elvis and Frank Sinatra albums . . .

And, just for good measure . . . POLKA!

He's got a bunch of others, but I'll spare you. ;)
Now let's just appreciate the beauty of some random instrumentals . . .

Whatcha think? Do you love instrumentals as much as I do?

Saturday, July 6, 2019

Give Us Your Farming Questions

Have you ever had those questions about farming that have been driving you insane, but could never get them answered? Or maybe you're just mildly curious. Well, go no further! This time, I'm here asking for your questions about farming!

Comment with those questions nagging at the back of your mind, and if I can't answer, I'll have one of the guys (or maybe more, depending on who I can get to agree) come as a guest to answer them for you! As with the advice posts we've done in the past, I can't promise that they'll all get answered, but it's worth a shot, yes?

You have until Wednesday, July 17, to submit your questions.