Today is Good Friday. I never gave the name of the day much thought until I started to grow as a Christian. That’s when it really began to dawn on me that this day was not such a good day. My sin made this day necessary. In order to fix the relationship between my heavenly father and me, someone had to pay for the sins I had grievously committed against God’s law. That someone is Jesus. And on Good Friday, we remember the incredibly painful day he spent suffering–and forgiving–on the cross. Six hours he hung there, until it was finally, completely, and irrevocably finished. His accomplished what I could not–he was the perfect sacrifice that could atone for my sins.
Of course, as I think about Good Friday, my thoughts automatically go to the Resurrection. As I was explaining to Little Princess what today meant, I teared up a little. I was thinking of the enormity of my sin and the equal enormity of His forgiveness and cleansing of me. Little Princess said to me, “It’s okay, Momma–he ROSE from the grave! He didn’t STAY dead.” Oh, how my heart rejoiced that she understands that part. Some day, she will understand the enormity of her sins, too…and then the resurrection will be that much sweeter to her as it is to me.
We have taken most of this week off from school. We did do two days at the beginning of the week in order to catch up, but the remaining part of the week has been spent finishing Easter dresses and spring cleaning. I actually finished the dresses for Little Princess and Star Child as well as the skirt for Dee in record time. Usually I am rushing about on the Saturday before Easter trying to finish a few last minute details, like inserting zippers, for example. I was finished with their garments by Tuesday. Gladys Mae was supposed to make her own dress, but after she got the bodice done, it was apparent that the fears I had about that pattern not working well on her body were completely founded. I ended up going to the city 40 miles away to get another 1 1/4 yards of fabric to re-do her bodice. I had to modify the pattern considerably in order to make it work. Once I had done all that work, I opted to just finish the dress myself. I have promised her that we can get different fabric so she can do another try at it, next time with my modified pattern pieces. I will post Easter pictures of my girls in their finery after Sunday.
The Handy Man has been busy, too. He built this:
And he cut up all this:
The Handy Man and the girls planted some blueberry bushes and fig trees for me this week, too:
In the mean time, the girls and I have been spring cleaning around here. They have worked like crazy-vacuuming the cobwebs off our pop-corn ceiling, dusting book shelves, moving things around for me. The Handy Man bought the bathtub for our bathroom re-model (hopefully he will complete that next week) while he was at Lowe’s getting our storage shed. We have moved all our unopened grain to the shed to make some room in the laundry/storage area which will soon be cut in half by the bathroom remodel. Dee and Star Child also moved all our empty jars (from our summer canning project–we have eaten about half our food) to the rack and they moved all the jars with food still in them to the cabinet. Gladys Mae has been working on the laundry area–cleaning the walls, vacuuming up the dust and cobwebs, sorting all the miscellaneous socks and clothing so they can be washed and returned to their rightful owners. Dee cleaned the refrigerator and organized it for me–she also cleaned out the big cabinet in the kitchen where I kept a lot of my canning items. They have been moved to the laundry area where the big storage rack is. I have a bunch of dried food goods I bought through my once-per-year food co-op, and they will have a home on our canning rack when all our moving-around is completed.
Here is our grain in its new home:
And our re-organized jar rack:
We have also cleaned my bathroom–bleaching the joints in the wall around the shower, cleaning the rims and the window thoroughly, etc. I still need to go through the house and collect all the winter blankets and store them. That will be job for next week when it isn’t so damp and rainy. I love to dry my linens outside so they smell like sunshine. There is something special about sleeping on linens from the line. Unless you have allergies, but that is another story.
My two big cleaning projects have been purging clothes and cleaning my room. I have been storing baby clothes for many years. The Handy Man and I would love to have another baby, but we also need to make room for the new bathroom. It was time to get rid of things we realistically wouldn’t need for a few years, even if the Lord were to bless us with another baby right away. The truth, though, is that neither of us is a spring chicken, and it could very well be that our family is complete. Only the Lord knows for sure, and He hasn’t let either of us know what the plan is. It has been an emotional process sorting through baby clothes. I had to keep some things that had special significance–a few special outfits bought for my boys by my mom and some good friends, a blanket infant sleeping bag that I love because it zips open from the bottom to make changes easier, a few outfits that I bought new and just can’t part with yet. Most of my stash I have bagged to give away, though. So far I have four trash bags full. I have also filled two tubs with winter clothing I hope to sell at the Children’s Sale in the fall. I am keeping my diapers because those would be hard to replace. I haven’t had the fortitude to go through the baby girl clothes yet. Little Princess still asks when God is going to give us a girl baby, and so many of the things I have are things I made for her and her sisters….I am too emotionally spent to open THAT box of memories right now.
We are storing the clothes that have both Space Bags and boxes in the shed,along with the cake pans I inherited from my mother in law and other assorted items we needed to get out of the house:
I have also been cleaning my room. I bought a used roll-top desk from a friend a few weeks ago, and I am still in the process of going through my old desk and finding new homes for all my stuff. My old desk was given to me when I was about thirteen. My parents bought it from Ikea when Ikea was mail-order only in this country. Gladys Mae has laid claim to my old desk, and my room is very crowded with all that furniture….so today I spent a lot of time making the transition. I had the space under my old desk packed with boxes of pictures and scrap-booking materials. I had room for all my pictures, but moving them necessitated looking through boxes to make sure I knew what I was moving. There were some memories there, for sure! I found some pictures of me holding a new Dee….she was so tiny (the smallest of my babies) and I was so young! I have also been dusting and vacuuming cobwebs from ceilings and corners. It has been a very long day.
My new-to-me desk:
This week has been a lot about dying to self, which I suppose is appropriate as I remember my savior who died for me. I have spent a lot of time confessing to the Lord all the ways I want to control my life, and yielding to Him all the hopes and dreams I have for the future. I know that the Lord loves me and does what is best for me–and whether that future holds more children or not, ultimately we recognize that God is in control. It has been a process of dying to self, of allowing the Lord to cleanse from me all the idols I hold within my heart. Like Luther, I find that my heart is nothing more than an idol factory, and the closer I walk with Jesus, the more I know that I am not worthy, and the more incredibly loved I feel. Giving up a bunch of baby clothes hurts the flesh, but it is doing wonders for my soul.
I hope that each of you who reads this knows the wonder of trusting Jesus alone for your salvation. I hope that as you enter Sunday morning that you, too, celebrate the resurrection of the Savior–not just from his own death, but in conquering sin and death for you and for all who trust solely in Him. I pray that each of you is willing to allow the Lord to reveal your idols, and that you are also willing to lay down those things to which you have clung tenaciously instead of clinging to Him. And if you have no idea what these things mean, then I encourage you to find a Bible and read the gospel of John in the new testament. Jesus is alive! And He is more than enough to satisfy every hunger, every desire, every emotional and spiritual need you have.
Good Friday! Happy Easter!