May 2008


As I’m feeling rather guilty for not posting within the last couple weeks, but don’t have time to create a “real” post, I decided to share another prayer from The Valley of Vision with you all.  If you don’t have The Valley of Vision, I recommend that you get it soon.  It should be one of the top ten volumes in every Christian’s library, right up there with Pilgrim’s Progress and Foxe’s Book of Martyrs.  Thanks Dad and Mom Mallery for our copy, given to us last Thanksgiving!  We read it at each time of family worship and many times in between.

This is the prayer we read this morning:

HEAVENLY FATHER,

Thou hast led me singing to the cross where I fling down all my burdens and see them vanish, where my mountains of guilt are levelled to a plain, where my sins disappear, though they are the greatest that exist, and are more in number than the grains of fine sand;

For there is power in the blood of Calvary to destroy sins more than can be counted even by one from the choir of heaven.

Thou hast given me a hill-side spring that washes clear and white, and I go as a sinner to its waters, bathing without hindrance in its crystal streams.

At the cross there is free forgiveness for poor and meek ones, and ample blessings that last for ever;

The blood of the Lamb is like a great river of infinite grace with never any diminishing of its fullness as thirsty ones without number drink of it.

O Lord, for ever will thy free forgiveness live that was gained on the mount of blood;

In the midst of a world of pain it is a subject for praise in every place, a song on earth, and anthem in heaven, its love and virtue knowing no end.

I have a longing for the world above where multitudes sing the great song, for my soul was never created to love the dust of earth.

Though here my spiritual state is frail and poor, I shall go on singing Calvary’s anthem.

May I always know that a clean heart full of goodness is more beautiful than the lily, that only a clean heart can sing by night and by day, that such a heart is mine when I abide in Calvary.

-from The Valley of Vision

I love the beauty of the Puritan writings.  These people labored for the right words to express the deep emotions they experienced as they fought to learn more of the character and ways of God and implement these things in their day-to-day lives.

I could continue with my thoughts, but I really must go; my little girl needs me!  Who are some of your favorite Puritan authors, and what are your favorite volumes? 

-JESSICA 

Last Saturday, we enjoyed having five of Ransom’s six brothers over for dinner and a movie.  Here they all are sitting at the table.  L – R: Ransom (27), Remington (20), Roman (24), Roshua (14), River (16 – sorry, I didn’t get his face!) and Ridge (21).  Honour, of course, is in the highchair. 🙂

When I was thirteen, I saw the movie Seven Brides for Seven Brothers for the first time.  Little did I know that I was getting a little glimpse of what my life would be like in a few years.  Okay, not completely.  We don’t all spontaneously break into song and dance when we’re together, and I’m NOT the matchmaker that Millie was.  Nonetheless, it’s a whole lot of fun being the first of these seven brides!

The day I married Ransom, I not only became a wife but also a daughter and sister to a whole new family.  I have so much fun being a member of this family and love each one of my in-laws dearly.  I’m grateful that in God’s providence he ordained for us to be related.

On Sunday, we also enjoyed the boys’ company.  They came with us to the Meuli ranch in Dayton to help out with branding.  They crammed into our Suburban for the hour-long drive:

No, the guy in the cowboy hat is not one of the brother-in-laws.  He’s Eric, a friend from church and, believe it or not, a previous piano student of mine.  You’d never know it to look at him, would ya? 😉

My parents and siblings also came to the ranch, along with my grandpa.  Honour loved being there!  It was almost impossible to keep him indoors.  The highlight of his day was getting to ride a horse with Papa and Auntie Paige’s help:

The funny thing is, Honour is terrified of dogs, but he’ll walk right into a pen full of cows and, as the above picture testifies, very happily sit on a horse’s back.  Strange.

Here’s one more picture, this time of Remember with her Papa Wayne:

Thank-you Meulis for such a fun afternoon!  After leaving the ranch, we all packed back into the Suburban and took a beautiful drive to see one of the places that the boys lived during Ransom’s mid-teen years.  We bounced along the dirt road with the windows rolled down and an Alabama CD playing.  I thought to myself, “Yep.  This is modern-day Seven Brides for Seven Brothers!” 🙂

As I suspect that several of my friends are checking this blog regularly, I thought I would pose a question to you all.  I was wondering if any of you had ideas for constructive activities for a twenty-month-old.   On a good day, we have regular mealtimes and nap times; I take a walk with the babies in the morning, and have a reading and playtime with Honour.  Bare in mind, this is on a good day; this is the goal, not what actually happens all the time!  

What I’m saying is, when I stick to my schedule, Honour does have specific activities throughout the day that he can look forward to.  And, I involve him as much as possible in my work, that is, as much as I can without exasperating him.  But, obviously, there are those times when I need to do a job that can’t involve him, and that’s when I’d love to be able to say, “Here, sit down and do this,” rather than, “You go figure out how to occupy yourself.”  I realize he has to learn how to entertain himself.  But I feel he has plenty of entertain-yourself-time throughout the day, and I’d like to come up with some specific activities he can do and enjoy without my involvement.  Does this make sense?

So, give me your ideas.  I don’t care if you’re male or female, married or single, or whether or not you have children.  I’d love to hear what any of you have to say!

-JESSICA

PS Don’t suggest that I give Honour a coloring time; we’ve tried it and he’s not interested yet…unless he’s allowed to eat the crayons/pencils. 🙂