Monday, June 30, 2008

Green Beans & Smoke

Zoomer's and her husband's homestead is in the mountains and fairly surrounded by the fires in Northern California, the nearest now 10 miles from their home, as the crow flies. It and others are currently burning away from their tiny village, which is the location of the command center for one of the complex (approximately 80 fires in a relatively small part of their county and under one name) fires. You can't see much in the photo she sent from her home, but that's precisely the point. The fires have been burning since June 21st, and on that day, I listened over the phone to some of the dry lightning strikes they were having and which are responsible for igniting the fires.

Permission obtained, here's what Zoomer wrote to me a few days ago about planting her green beans:

I experienced God's mercy first hand yesterday. I needed to plant beans. I was dreading planting beans because of the smoke, especially since before I could actually poke the seeds into the ground, I would have to haul several large and heavy bags of soil amendments, open and distribute their contents in the chosen area, and then run the rototiller through enough times to get it all good and mixed in. A somewhat strenuous job, and one not to be undertaken under the currently designated "severely unhealthy" air conditions. But God is so kind. As I was dragging the first bag of steer manure into the wheelbarrow, the skies started to clear. No kidding, before too many minutes had passed, I could see completely blue sky and had a clear view of the trees and mountain across the road. As I've told you, I haven't been able to see anything more than a VERY hazy outline for many days. The skies stayed clear during my entire job, and then -- you guessed it -- the smoke settled back in as soon as I was finished. I am not kidding. Again and again I am reminded of how much God cares for His own. If He can remove the smoke long enough for me to plant green beans, He is more than capable of keeping our little homestead safe from the surrounding fires. And He will if He chooses. If His plan is different, I will be content in that too.

With bowed heads and grateful hearts, we thank the Lord for His never ceasing attendance upon us and all the bits and pieces of our lives.

O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever. ~I Chronicles 16:34

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