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Monday, February 29, 2016

The Wind - Spirit


 
The Wind - Spirit

John 3:8 “The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes.”

One could say the Spirit does what He wishes for the word used for wind is the same word for the Spirit.

In 1 Corinthians: 12-14 the work of the Spirit is manifested. He does what He does at the pleasure of the Father somewhat in the same way Christ obeyed and went to the cross.

The power of the Spirit is limited only by one thing and that is the will of the Father. At the command of the Father the Spirit went forth and created the world and after the raw creation He brooded or watched over the works of his hands and put the finishing touches to the creation. The awesome power of the Spirit is unknowable except in part.

In 1 Corinthians 12 we are partakers of a small part of His power as He wishes to share it with each one. 1 Corinthians 12: 4-11 There are different kinds of spiritual enablements, but the same Spirit distributes them.

Verse 5 There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord.  6 There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work. 7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8 To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.

The scripture goes on to say that the regenerated people come into being, what is called the body of Christ here on earth each with a portfolio of their own.

1 Corinthians 12:18-27  But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. 19 If all were a single member, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, yet one body. 21 The eye cannot say to the hand, "I have no need of you," nor again the head to the feet, "I have no need of you." 22 On the contrary, the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and on those parts of the body that we think less honorable we bestow the greater honor, and our un-presentable parts are treated with greater modesty, 24 which our more presentable parts do not require. But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it, 25 that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. 26 If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together. 27 Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it. It is the member’s responsibility to recognize where they have been placed in the body and what their duties are and to act accordingly.

It is my belief that you can find your ministry gift listed in 1 Corinthians 12 somewhere.  1 Corinthians 12: 28-31 is a short list of ministries that must be in the body of Christ in order for the body to function to its fullness. Since chapter thirteen follows chapter twelve it is assumed that is the better way Paul refers to but I feel chapter fourteen continues what he is teaching in chapter twelve with chapter thirteen being Parenthetical.

The most important thing to realize is; this is where it is at. This is what the Holy Spirit is doing today and it is incumbent on every believer to fulfill his God assigned work within the body of Christ. Those who fail to follow the Spirit’s leading nullify the grace bestowed upon them and the body suffers. Thanks be to God who has counted us worthy to serve Him. 

NORTH OF AUSTIN - Chapter Five


North of Austin - - Chapter five
Come On In - The Water is Fine !!
 
We kept our engagement quiet for my last week of school was quite intense and I didn’t want to be answering the same questions over and over.

By the end of the week I was ready to spend some quiet time with my intended. We rode to a secluded spot and brought a lunch with us.  A water fall with a clear pool of water was just perfect for swimming but I didn’t bring a suit with me. Abby had her suit on and dove right in after pulling her dress off.
 
After swimming across the pool and back she told me to come on in with her. I told her my predicament and she said don’t you skinny dip? I said sure with my brothers and other men.

She came closer to the bank and stood up waist deep and said; “I’m waiting.”

I just stood there with a thousand thoughts going through my mind.

“Come on, my husband soon to be, and get in the water.”

I tried one more time to deter her by saying, “You have me at a disadvantage by having your suit on and what would your mother think if she knew.”

She said, “Well when we get back home you can ask her what she thought,” and with that she started removing her suit. In less than ten seconds I was naked and under the clear water.

She laughed and said, “Now that wasn’t so bad was it?”

We cavorted for an hour swimming and stared at each other as we dressed.

Then we ate our lunch and I must say I was overwhelmed by the whole event. The more I thought about it I finally concluded the afternoon was going to take the stress out of our first night together as man and wife for we already had an eyeful of one another.

The picture I now had of her in my mind projected a clear image of perfection. After that she would often call me; “My handsome man.”

Sunday afternoon I said my goodbye’s and headed for the farm where I worked for two weeks. Even with gloves on I had blisters on both hands but I must admit it felt good to be working the soil again. It was almost enough to make me give up my future in the law field.  Then the vision of Abby would come into view and it was back to the law business.

I finished the two weeks and we pretty much had the crops in. The day I left I told everyone I was going to marry Abby and would be completing my schooling and getting my license to practice law.

With all of the congratulations finished my Pa called me aside and said he was hoping that I would drop the idea of going into law and return to the farm. He paused and then went on and said he understood that marrying Abby and her father being a lawyer would cause me to be interested in it.

Pa said that Abner considered me to be the best hand he had and hated to lose me. He further said that he had promised that when the time came he would give us boys the money he had set aside for us instead of paying us a wage all the years we worked for him. He gave me a good deal of money and then said goodbye son.

There was a certain finality in the way he said it and for me the family bond was never the same after that, we all had moved to a different level.

Just before I left, Abner my older brother called me aside and said he was glad I was getting married to Abby for she had blossomed into a fine woman. He told me a few more things he had learned the hard way about marital bliss with a woman.  I was embarrassed and could hardly believe the things he told me. After I left I still redden each time I thought about the stuff he shared with me in detail.

While he was educating me concerning the intimacies of marriage I thought he really gave me too much detail but since Abner and I were close we could talk about most anything.

Over the next two weeks before the marriage I would think of what Abner told me and the picture I had of Abby without her clothes on and the thought made me weak in the knees. Since she had no older sisters I wondered if her married cousins had took her aside and explained some of the stuff I had been clued in about.
TO BE CONTINUED - - -

Monday, February 22, 2016

NORTH OF AUSTIN - Chapter four


NORTH OF AUSTIN CHAPTER FOUR
If you need to read chapter three - - CLICK HERE

Abby's Pa helped Roy enroll in College.
 
I wasn’t sure I wanted to be a farmer the rest of my life though I didn’t tell my Pa that.

Abby’s Pa was a farmer but he also was a lawyer. He began to talk to me about becoming a lawyer and setting up a practice in the town with him. I had got good grades in school so I could enroll in college and study to become a lawyer but I didn’t know how Pa would take it.

When we got the crops in I started working for Abby’s father in his office doing whatever needed doing. He gave me several books to start me off on my journey to becoming filled with legalese. He got me enrolled in a nearby college and it was full time hitting the books when I wasn’t in class. I was doing pretty well at understanding how the law worked except where it didn’t seem logical. Of course there was the learning a lot of words I never heard before and their meaning was another hill to climb.

I managed to see Abby when I could but it wasn’t actually enough to satisfy me or her. Our times in the parlor were heating up and I kept wanting to put my hands all over her. Then I got the surprise of my life so far. Her father called me into his office which was unusual for he normally just talked to me in the outer office.
 
He told me to sit down and began the conversation by saying;   “I see you are doing very well in your classes even though you are carrying a heavy load.” I didn’t answer that for I was wondered what was coming next. I had found when people come to a pause and don’t speak for a time it wasn’t good. I didn’t know if he was setting me up for a big letdown or what?  He went on saying your semester is finished in two weeks and you can work here full time until classes start again in the fall unless you have other plans.
 
I said I was hoping to take two weeks off and help put in the crops on the farm. He said can’t they manage without you? I replied yes they could but they could use the help and I need to have a change for a few days. He said it would be alright for the two weeks but after that he wanted me back on the job. I agreed to that and then he said the thing he wanted to discuss was something else.

He said I noticed you have been getting pretty personal with Abby. I thought whoa, I’m going to get it. I knew I was going a little further than maybe I should but for some reason it didn’t seem wrong. I don’t know just how to put it other than to say; “I wanted her completely in the best way.”

He interrupted my thinking by saying if you are serious about Abby perhaps it is time to talk about you marrying her. This was the one thing I didn’t think we would be talking about this afternoon. He said I have spoken to Abby about this and it seems she is ready to take you as her husband. I truly was at a loss for something to say but what came out was, “That would be nice.”

I had dreamed of this for years but my expectations were way down the road if ever. The reason for that mind set was I knew how proud he was of her and he preferred her to find someone more sophisticated than a farm boy, even if he had okayed me sitting the parlor. It was one thing to come and sit with her and another to be her husband.

I finally regained my composure and said I would be proud and honored to have her as my wife and I knew she could have done far better in some respects although no one could love her more than I do. He said come for dinner tonight and we will make it final. I said I would be there and looking forward to the evening.

Since this was going to be the happiest day of my life so far I took a bath before going to the dinner. When I arrived I put my horse in the barn for I wasn’t sure how long I would be there and I might just spend the night.
 
Abby answered my knock at the door and she grabbed me and kissed me for a long time until her mother called from somewhere saying if that is Roy then bring him on in.

Entering the parlor we sat down and had some lemonade. As we were sitting there Abby was fidgeting and I was sweating as we exchanged some niceties. Her father said dinner is almost ready but we have some business to take care of before we eat.
 
I didn’t know how much more of this I could stand so I just blurted out; sir I would like to marry your daughter as soon as possible. Everything was so quiet we could hear each other breathing.
After what seemed to be an hour he and Abby’s mother looked at each other and started to smile and said welcome to the family son. We stood up and shook hands and hugged each other. I took Abby’s hand and slipped a ring on her finger and kissed her for the first time in front of her folks.

That was the best supper I ever had and her Pa said I could stay in the bunk house instead of riding back to town for the night was dark with no moon shining. After her folks went to bed Abby slipped out to the bunk house and we kissed many times. I felt freer to be a little more personal now the ring was on her finger and was anxious for the wedding to be over. At breakfast we laid out a schedule for the wedding to happen. It was one more week of school, two weeks working on the farm getting the crops in and a week later, “The Wedding.”

TO BE CONTINUED

 

Monday, February 15, 2016

NORTH OF AUSTIN - chapter Three


Abby's Dad said we should sit in the Parlor
To view chapter one CLICK HERE
To view chapter two  CLICK HERE
Chapter three

We hired a neighbor’s boy to do the chores and feed the animals while we were at the wedding.

Pa told me to go and check to see if he had done everything he was told to do which I did.  I noticed there was couple of things missing so I explained to Pa what my suspicions were.

The next day four of us went over to the neighbor’s farm and asked the boy about the missing items, and he said he didn’t know anything about them. He went on to say, he was finished by five and as he was leaving there were a couple of hard cases coming by and they passed him without saying anything.

Upon hearing that Pa told us to gear up. This meant for us to get our guns and food for a couple of days. The neighbor and his son decided to join us so we headed for the trail.

We had a good idea where they were heading so by morning we spotted them asleep by a creek. Seems they had found a gallon of hard cider in our barn and had drunk it all. This put them into a deep sleep so we walked right up on them.

We quickly found our goods and several other items that belonged to someone else.  Pa had us tie them across their saddles which were an uncomfortable position to travel in. We turned them over to the sheriff and he was glad to see them. They had been robbing farms in three counties.

With Ben’s marriage that left four of us who were single.  Charles was sixteen, I was fourteen and Lester being twelve and the baby Franklin was ten. Since Ben had moved, we were nigh unto needing another hand but Pa said we could make out it would just mean a little more work for each of us.

This extra work cut in on my time with Abby (which wasn’t much) and I wasn’t too happy about that nor was Charles. Finally our complaining paid off and Pa hired a hand from town. We fixed a room in one of the barns for him and he ate with us.

He was pretty pleased with the arrangement for he scarcely earned enough to feed himself in town. As it turned out he was a good worker who earned his keep and we felt we were lucky to have him.

We were awfully busy and time passed quickly. Charles was next to get married and he wanted to stay and work the farm with Abner. We built him a house near Abner and his brood.  He had four children now, two of each boys and girls. They were two sets of twins so his family was growing fast.  

Between Ma and my oldest brother Abner’s wife they soon had Charles wife in hand. The two daughters- in- laws were a great bit of help for ma in handling all the women’s chores. Abner’s kids reminded me of when I was young and doing the chores relieving the older ones to do more important things like plowing and sowing the crops.

As I turned fifteen, Abby’s father had a talk with me. He wanted to know what my feelings were for Abby. This surprised me for I didn’t know what was coming next. He asked me if I was serious about her or if I just had some ideas of fooling around with her.

I got his meaning right off and told him if she would have me when we were older I wanted to marry her. I said I haven’t been able to get her to commit to me so far but was going to continue chasing after her if it was okay with him.  He then surprised me by saying it is okay for you to start using the parlor, just you remember I will be in the next room and won’t stand for any messing around.

I wasn’t sure just how to act in the parlor for I never courted before. What was I supposed to do in the Parlor?  Abby had finally let me kiss her and a couple of times and she let me hold her close enough to feel her heart beating ...

Her mother Sally had warned her about being too close to a young man and how that could excite him. I had to admit her mom was right about that one and Abby found that out also.

I think she thought it was funny but it embarrassed me very much. It was then I figured her father felt it was safer to have us in the house than being out of sight. I was surprised to realize that Abby was beginning to have some of the same feelings as I was and at times initiated a spell of kissing.
 
I will remember a certain evening as long as I live for it was on that evening we committed to each other for life. It was going to be another two and a half years before we were wed but I felt she was really mine from that moment on.
TO BE CONTINUED

 

Thursday, February 11, 2016

NORTH OF AUSTIN - CHAPTER TWO



Lilly was a Sweet Country Girl
North of Austin - - Chapter two
To read chapter ONE  - - CLICK HERE

Time seemed to pass slowly when we were young and each of us boys grew and developed at our own pace. Each year Abby and I were growing closer together.

 Our oldest brother, Abner had arrived at eighteen years old and his maturing was crying out for a woman.  He picked out a woman named Lilly.  I wouldn’t have chosen her for she wasn’t very pretty but apparently she attracted Abner.
As far as I could tell the most appealing thing about her was her youth, availability and she was a good cook. As it turned out Lilly was a good match for him and kept everything in order like a farm wife should. As time went by I came to appreciate her and was very fond of her.

We all pitched in and built a house for them near the main dwelling where they still took their meals most of the time.  Upon getting married Pa gave Abner more responsibility and he started drawing wages. The rest of us would hardly ever get any money but Pa always promised us money in the future.

After Abner got married Ben got the itch for female company but Pa told him to cool it for he wasn’t ready for a woman as of yet.

Ben wasn’t so easy to be put off with words and I thought Pa was going to have to put a whip on him to settle him down. Abner finally got him cooled down by telling him about the husband’s duties and the fact he was going to be a father himself soon.

Ben liked the idea of having a wife but being a father didn’t appeal to him at all for he wasn’t ready for that.  Things returned to normal after that.

I didn’t talk about Abby to the brothers any more for they would tease me by saying they were going over to see her and she needed an older man for I was too young for her.

As to age I was almost a year older than her and two years older than her sister June who was also very comely.  On Sunday if all the work was caught up, the as of yet single brothers and I would head off to see those whom we considered our girls.

I would make the hours ride over to Abby’s home to see her but her father would spend most of the time talking to me about the crops and other farm stuff and my time with Abby was limited.  We would usually get to go for a walk but her father would send June alone with us saying she needed the exercise.

My romancing was limited to holding hands with no kissing. At our age we were too young for the parlor and it was off limits for us. That was where most of the serious courting took place and you had to be marrying age also.

Another thing that interfered with my visits was one or two other Romeos would show up and cramp my style by already being there sitting on the porch talking to her Pa.  How can you win a girl’s affection with all these guys hanging around impressing her father?

Abby seem to enjoy all the attention which made me pretty mad. She knew I had claimed her for my present and future sweetheart but she didn’t always act like she accepted it as fact.  Sometimes my Pa would make me take Franklin with me. When that happened I would try to get June to entertain him but it didn’t always work out that way.

The next two years passed without any real problems. Ben was eighteen now and since Abner had married at eighteen he was getting all stirred up and had his eye set on one of the ranchers daughters. I had to admit she wasn’t bad to look at and hoped she could run a house for him if he continued to pursue her.

He came to Pa and told him of his plans if Pa approved. Pa knew he had been sneaking off to town every so often so he agreed it was time for him to find a wife. When he found out who Ben was interested in he had some reservations about her for he was afraid she was more fluff than home maker. Ma felt the same way but figured she could straighten the girl up after they got hitched.

The wedding plans moved right along except for one problem.  The rancher was standing firm on Ben coming to work for him on his ranch while Ben wanted to stay with our family. In the end he gave in and agreed to move to her place and become a full time rancher. He had worked our horses’ part time but now it would a full time job. Pa gave Ben a nice gift of cash. He had earned it while working along with the rest of us.

The wedding was held at the girl’s home so we all packed up and went there getting home late after dark. We are going to miss Ben around here for he had been a fixture for his eighteen years but when its time to move on you have to go.

Ben’s father-in-law didn’t have any boys, only four girls. I suspect he will have four sons- in –laws working for him before it’s over.
TO BE CONTINUED

 

Monday, February 1, 2016

NORTH OF AUSTIN Chapter One

A New Continued Fiction Story begins today - -  North of Austin - -



NORTH OF AUSTIN

Chapter one

My Pa and Ma settled north of Austin when it was trying to be more than a settlement. Pa was a tall sinewy man and strong as an ox. Ma was shorter than he by at least a foot. She always had a twinkle in her eye which gave her an aura of desirability that which in turn made her irresistible.

Pa had a lot of competition before he won her. As I grew older I wondered why she chose Pa for there must have been suitors more handsome than he was.  One day in answer to my question she said; “I choose him because he suited me to a tee.”

Well I’m glad she picked him for if she hadn’t I wouldn’t be here telling you my story.

My five brothers and I helped make the spread a success though Pa never gave us much credit.  About the most credit he gave us was we could eat more than we were worth.

Abner was the eldest of our clan save for Ma and Pa of course. Our spread was both ranching and farming. I wanted to be a rancher but Pa didn’t see the need for a specialist so all us boys were both farmers and ranchers. Due to the fact most spreads were large which put them at a distance from one another we didn’t visit very often unless there was a funeral, wedding or something special going on.

As of yet there wasn’t much fencing put up except for protecting the crops. The cattle didn’t understand that the hay was for later in the winter so they would help themselves since it was easier to fill up on it than grazing.

When my Pa and Ma came west as young married, they set up housekeeping on several sections of land. Like many they set out to make their fortune. Pa had been given a pretty good start for he had never been paid anything for the work he had done for his twenty years. After they had been settled for a couple of years, Abner was born and every two years another boy came on the scene till there were six of us boys.

 
We had a good number of kin folk east of us so there were a lot of family names to choose from.   Pa decided to start with Abner then Ben followed by Charles, Lester, Elroy, and Franklin. I was the fifth in line and was named Elroy but was called Roy. For some reason Ma quit bringing forth after Franklin seems something happened during his birth and she didn’t get the girl she wanted.

Our pa didn’t believe in anyone not pulling their weight so we youngens started working on the ranch/farm as soon as we were able to do the chores.

The first task we started doing was fetching water and slopping the hogs. Since the hogs were pretty ornery and mean one of the older boys would help feed them at the same time teaching the younger ones to be careful and not get bit and chewed up by one of them critters.

By the time Abner was ten the whole family was in place and working hard save for Franklin. At the end of each year after the crops were harvested and the cattle sold the work days eased off quite a bit; we could catch up with our schooling.  When the weather would allow we could even go to regular school. There was a schoolhouse and barn next to it so the kids who had to travel a distance could stable and feed their horses there and sleep in the barn. The school would feed those who stayed in the barn which was a great help.

When needed Pa would come and get one of us to help him with the work at home.  The school provided us with one other benefit and that was we got acquainted with all the young ladies in the broader community. The boys at a younger age picked out the ones they wanted to court later in life. All the boys in my family enjoyed that pleasure and would spend much time projecting the future with this one and that one. We had many arguments about who was going to get which one and it led to several fights.

The one who suited my fancy was Abby. I had fights with more than one boy over her. Some of them were quite a bit bigger than me. After I got my licking Abner would whip the daylights out of the winner who whipped me. That was something they had to look forward to when they whipped me and the knowledge of that saved me from some lickings.

The boys in school were very crude and would try to put their hands on the girls where they shouldn’t and that always riled me up especially when it came to Abby. Nobody was going to put their hands on her if I could help it. She told me to mind my own business for she could take care of herself. I think she knew I wasn’t much of a fighter and hated to see me get whipped every time. It was embarrassing to see her hero with a bloody nose.

She was pretty tough when it came to defending herself.  I saw her send more than one boy with rambling hands running and screaming. She carried a stiff hair pin and could make a pin cushion out of the would be offender before he knew what was happening. Even though I was bashful, I let Abby know she was my favorite and she and I had a future together.

Her beautiful auburn hair that was half way down her back, and her eyes were brown with a green cast at times. When I looked at her face my knees would grow weak.

The problem was she hadn’t made up her mind about whom she favored and that led to more fights. I would light into anyone I suspected as being a rival.  As I got older I didn’t always win, but I did enough damage that not many wanted to go at it again.

Our teacher, Mr. Johansson was a huge Swede and would grab the combatants by the ears and almost pull them off.  That took all the desire for fighting out of us immediately and rather quickly put an end to the fight. He wasn’t a man to be messed with and even the grown boys in class wouldn’t cross him.
Rumor was his fiancĂ©e left him at the altar for another man and while he still hasn’t got over it, it left him with a short fuse that took little to light.  As the story goes he almost beat the man to death who took his girl and left her with child so he had to immigrate to America to avoid prosecution.

It always seemed strange to hear a Swede speak English with a southern accent. He was off women for several years until a widow woman caught his eye.  Her husband died on the way to America and was buried at sea while the steamer was going at near full speed. She was a German woman who married the Swede on the condition he would pay the debt she incurred in order to get to the U.S. She was an all business woman with no foolishness about her. This was one of the things Johansson liked about her.

A short time after he met her he asked her if she wanted a husband again and she said sure. The next day he moved her few things into his place and they were married. Since they don’t have any kids it makes me wonder what kind of relationship they have.

Just before Christmas Pa would take the whole family to town and we would buy the clothes needed for the next year. During the year our feet would grow till the toes touched the end of the shoes and we would need new shoes every year. The old ones were passed down to the next in line but they were usually completely worn out and were only good for patching things like harness and making leather hinges.

It was a happy time when we got some store bought sweets which we looked forward to even after we were grown up a bit.  As time passed our place prospered and we were growing up fast.

To Be Continued

LIFE TO THE WEARY SOUL




LIFE TO THE WEARY SOUL

Let him breathe on me, Let him breathe on me.

Let the breath of God now breathe on me;

Let him breathe on me, Let him breathe on me,

Let the breath of God now breathe on me.

So goes the chorus.

There are many "feel good" experiences we as Christians can enjoy.
In offering up praise we experience both communion and fellowship emotionally.
The new birth brings with it the release from all guilt and bondage.
The infilling of the Holy Spirit possesses the soulical nature of man and is both acknowledged by the soul and spirit.
The Psalms encourage us to pursue the intimacy that is brought about through worship and praise.
So let Him breathe on me for it gives life to the weary soul.