Tuesday, October 25, 2016

What I'm Knitting

I finished knitting my Mara Shawl recently (I'll update and post a photo of it asap), and am now working on a "strawberries and cream" dress for my older daughter to wear through the fall, winter and spring. It'll be a short-sleeved garment which we can layer on top of a white t-shirt or blouse throughout the colder months. I am knitting it to be pretty long so that he can wear it next year, too. This is my first in-the-round article of clothing that I have ever knit, and also the first thing I've made with sleeves so it has been interesting and another learning experience. I'm loving the simplicity of this knit and it is definitely something I'd knit again in the future.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Election Times...

This whole election is really getting to me whenever I scroll through news or Facebook, so I am trying not to do either too much. This leads me to think, though:

The election does not seem so stressful or so worth obssesing over when thinking about the following quote from the Psalter: "Put not your trust in princes or in sons of men, for in them there is no salvation." Of course, we have to vote for one person in the end because the country must have a President. So we think, whose values are more similar to Orthodox values and the values we are supposed to try and live by? That is the one who should get our vote. It makes things seem so much simpler this way. Either way, we need to put our trust in God, and not in anyone before Him, for He is the one who can help us to save ourselves for eternity.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Words of Wisdom from Saint Paisios

I have been accompanying my morning coffee each day with a few pages from a book called Elder Paisios of Mount Athos, Spiritual Counsels: With Pain and Love for Contemporary Man. This is the first in a series of five books of this newly-canonized saint. We picked up all of the books in Jordanville this summer. I picked up the first one that very same day as I waited for my husband while he visited an old friend, and I was immediately blown away. This book is full of nothing but gems of wisdom. It truly is life-changing for me. Even if our mornings are crazy, if I can sneak in a minute or two of reading time, it helps set the day off on a better note. 

I wanted to share a snippet from what I read this morning. 

-Geronda (Elder), is logic of any help when a spiritual person is confronting temptation? 
-In such cases, we should do what is humanly possible, and where something is not in our power, we should leave it to God. There are some people who rely on their minds in everything they do, like those who want to pray the Jesus Prayer only with their minds. They try so hard to concentrate they get a headache. If I were to approach the problems that I face daily in this way, do you think that I would be able to manage? I just do what is humanly possible and leave the rest to God. I say to myself, "God will show me, He will enlighten me and I will know what to do." You hear many people complain, "How will I get this done, and how will I manage to finish this or that..." The smallest problem gives them a headache. If we try to solve problems using nothing but our logic, we will get dizzy. We must place God at the forefront of every one of our actions. We should do nothing without first putting our trust in God. Otherwise, we will agonize and tire our minds, and we will feel psychologically miserable."