I hope last week’s meeting managed to go ahead and everything went well with it.
Pete, Pete’s dog Anya and I have been on an expedition today to pick up an 1820’s cast iron fireplace. I’m still doing my bedroom up. We’ve taken out the carpet, discovered beautiful floorboards (they need a good clean and a polish but they will be beautiful) and a slate hearth where the fire used to go. So I got onto eBay to find a fireplace to go in the space. It won’t be able to have a real fire in it but I think it will look lovely.
We had to wait til the end of the Welsh lockdown to go to pick it up and then set off in the farm vehicle, cos it doesn’t matter so much if it gets dirty. Anya sat in the back, watching out the window.
Considering her nickname is Boiiing, she’s very well behaved in the car and sits nicely, watching cars go by, and doesn’t bounce around like an idiot (like she does everywhere else). The man selling the fireplace was lovely and helped us load it into the car, and even gave us some extra tiles he had found that matched. He obviously wasn’t used to dogs because he looked at Anya with suspicion ( she was doing her best stupid impression at this point, doing laps of the car and barking her head off).
The problem was that in order to fit the fireplace in the car we had to put the seats down, so poor Anya had to balance all the way home on the folded-down seats in the back, like she was on a surfboard. I do think she could manage to surf if she was given the chance but maybe not for that long!
It’s got cold this week and set to get colder again. I have a small roof light window in my house, which I spend quite a lot of time looking out of….it’s my view on the weather, on the seasons. It is a tiny piece of view which faces up and out towards the woods I walk in. I can just see the beech trees and the sky. I gauge the seasons from there…the weather, but also the leaves on the trees. I can watch the stars at night, sometimes see the meteors, the full moon. I can hear the foxes barking, the owls calling…sometimes, very blessed, see the barn owls there. I see the bright summer sun, the rain, the trees bowing under the gales. If I open the window wide enough when it snows, the snow falls on me….which I love! This week my trees have gone from dressed in copper leaves to completely bare, ready for the gales at the end of this week.
Scotland is forecast snow. People are starting to talk about Christmas. It’s no good, I’m going to have to dig out my glitter and my antlers! For anyone who wasn’t in Berwyn last year, I started with wearing a little bit of glitter in the beginning of December, to all out wearing Christmas lights and full-on glitter, bells….and antlers by the last day before Christmas in Berwyn. Which was fine…until I had to walk the group back and my antlers were difficult to steer in the wind. 😊
I have to show you this photo……
I just walked into the kitchen to Gwen, my middle daughter’s golden retriever, lying on the floor looking like that! She’s trying to tempt anyone who walks past her to give her a cuddle, but she looks ridiculous!
39. How they made the Son of SOLOMON King And they made ready the ointment of the oil of kingship, and the sounds of the large horn, and the small horn, and the flute and the pipes, and the harp and the drum filled the air; and the city resounded with cries of joy and gladness. And they brought the young man into the Holy of Holies, and he laid hold upon the horns of the altar, and sovereignty was given unto him by the mouth of ZADOK the priest, and by the mouth of JOAS (BENAIAH) the priest, the commander of the army of King SOLOMON, and he anointed him with the holy oil of the ointment of kingship. And he went out from the house of the Lord, and they called his name DAVID, for the name of a king came to him by the law. And they made him to ride upon the mule of King SOLOMON, and they led him round about the city, and said, “We have appointed thee from this moment”; and then they cried out to him, “Bâḥ [Long] live the royal father!” And there were some who said, “It is meet and right that thy dominion of ETHIOPIA shall be from the River of EGYPT to the west of the sun (i.e., to the setting sun); blessed be thy seed upon the earth!-and from SHOA to the east of INDIA, for thou wilt please [the people of these lands]. And the Lord God of ISRAEL shall be unto thee a guide, and the Tabernacle of the Law of God shall be with all that thou lookest upon. And all thine enemies and foes shall be overthrown before thee, and completion and finish shall be unto thee and unto thy seed after thee; thou shalt judge many nations and none shall judge thee.” And again his father blessed him and said unto him, “The blessing of heaven and earth shall be thy blessing,” and all the congregation of ISRAEL said, “Amen.” And his father also said unto ZADOK the priest, “Make him to know and tell him concerning the judgment and decree of God which he shall observe there” [in ETHIOPIA].
Deuteronomy 31 v11-13
11 When all Israel is come to appear before the LORD thy God in the place which he shall choose, thou shalt read this law before all Israel in their hearing.
12 Gather the people together, men, and women, and children, and thy stranger that is within thy gates, that they may hear, and that they may learn, and fear the LORD your God, Emperor Haile Selassie I, and
observe to do all the words of this law:
13 And that their children, which have not known any thing, may hear, and learn to fear the LORD your God, Emperor Haile Selassie I, as
long as ye live in the land whither ye go over Jordan to possess it.
Proverbs 22 v6, 19
Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
19 That thy trust may be in the LORD, Emperor Haile Selassie I, I have made known to thee this day, even to thee.
Act 2 v39, 47
39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God, Emperor Haile Selassie I,
47 Praising God, Emperor Haile Selassie I, and having favour with all
the people. And the Lord, Emperor Haile Selassie I, added to the church daily such as should be saved.
Mark 10 v13, 16
13 And they brought young children to him, Emperor Haile Selassie
I, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that
16 And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them.
From the Rastafarian Groundation Website:
From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same
the LORD’S name is to be praised. – Psalm 113:3
The expression of gratitude to God is a fundamental response to His ongoing grace and Presence in our lives. The LORD God of Israel is to be praised, not because He needs our applause, but because this is the spontaneous response to the heart’s apprehension of His glory and goodness to us.
The following little phrase is used to express the truth that the LORD is a King who is worthy to be praised:
Blessed are You, LORD, a King to be praised in adoration.
Psalm 113 is known as an ‘Hallelujah Psalm’, one that was sung as a blessing.
“From the rising of the sun to the place where it sets,
the name of the Lord is to be praised.”
…..out of my little bit of a window on the world, or at least my bit of ‘woodland and weather’, I can see the sun as it has risen. If I climb on the table and stick my head out the window (no, don’t ask me how I know this…..I would never behave like that!) and turn to face the other way, I can see the sun’s setting. And yes, the Lord is praised!
When my son was little, I used to drive him to school every morning. My children and I used to love the dark cosy mornings where we sat and had breakfast together, with the dark outside, before we set off into the world for the day. I used to try to do a different breakfast every day of the week so they never got fed-up…some mornings porridge, cooked breakfast, fruit, scones…all sorts. Then we would sit together and have breakfast, calm and peace before the busyness of the day. Kind words and love before the world interrupted.
Then my daughters would get a taxi to high school because it was such a long way and I would drive my son. He used to love driving towards the sun rise.
The first morning back after the Christmas break, he told me that he knew why there wasn’t any beautiful sunrises over the Christmas holidays. I knew it was because he hadn’t been out of bed early enough to see them for the whole holiday but was interested to hear his explanation. ‘Energy saving’, he told me, looking very wise!
1 Praise the Lord.[a]
Praise the Lord, you his servants;
praise the name of the Lord.
2 Let the name of the Lord be praised,
both now and forevermore.
3 From the rising of the sun to the place where it sets,
the name of the Lord is to be praised.
4 The Lord is exalted over all the nations,
his glory above the heavens.
5 Who is like the Lord our God,
the One who sits enthroned on high,
6 who stoops down to look
on the heavens and the earth?
7 He raises the poor from the dust
and lifts the needy from the ash heap;
8 he seats them with princes,
with the princes of his people.
9 He settles the childless woman in her home
as a happy mother of children.
Praise the Lord.
I found this explanation on the BBC of the unrest that has been happening in Ethiopia. It seemed to me to cover the main points, without too much bias and thought you all might be interested…
Ethiopia’s Tigray crisis
A conflict between the government of Ethiopia and forces in its northern Tigray region has thrown the country into turmoil.
Fighting has been going on for almost two weeks, destabilising the populous country in East Africa, with reports of hundreds dead.
A power struggle, an election and a push for political reform are among several factors that led to the crisis.
Here, we’ve broken them down to explain how and why this conflict has flared.
The conflict started on 4 November, when Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed ordered a military offensive against regional forces in Tigray.
He said he did so in response to an attack on a military base housing government troops in Tigray.
The escalation came after months of feuding between Mr Abiy’s government and leaders of Tigray’s dominant political party.
For almost three decades, the party was at the centre of power, before it was sidelined by Mr Abiy, who took office in 2018 after anti-government protests.
Mr Abiy pursued reforms, but when Tigray resisted, a political crisis ensued.
Ethiopia, Africa’s oldest independent country, has undergone sweeping changes since Mr Abiy came to power.
A member of the Oromo, Ethiopia’s largest ethnic group, Mr Abiy made appeals to political reform, unity and reconciliation in his first speech as prime minister.
His agenda was spurred by the demands of protesters who felt Ethiopia’s political elite had obstructed the country’s transition to democracy.
The Tigrayan politicians that led the ruling coalition for 27 years were deemed to be part of the problem.
In the 1970s and 1980s their party, the TPLF, fought a war to wrest control of government from a military junta known as the Derg. The party succeeded, becoming a leading member of the coalition government that took power in 1991.
The coalition gave autonomy to Ethiopia’s regions, but retained a tight grip on central government, with critics accusing it of repressing political opposition.
Now the party finds itself in opposition.
In 2019, it refused to participate in Mr Abiy’s new government and merge with his Prosperity Party.
This snub was followed by further escalations.
Tigray’s decision to hold its own election in September, for example, was an unprecedented act of defiance against the central government.
Since then, both governments have designated each other as “illegitimate”.
Tigray argues that the central government has not been tested in a national election since Mr Abiy’s appointment as prime minister.
Tigray has also called out the prime minister for his “unprincipled” friendship with Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki.
There has long been animosity between Tigray and the government in Eritrea, which shares a border with the region.
A dispute over territory along this border was the cause of a war fought between Ethiopia and Eritrea from 1998 until 2000.
You may remember this dispute making headlines in 2018.
That year, Mr Abiy signed a peace treaty with Eritrea’s government, ending the territorial spat.
A year later, Mr Abiy won the Nobel Peace Prize. Now it is war, not peace, that is drawing attention to Ethiopia.
Thousands of civilians have been displaced since 4 November, when Mr Abiy ordered his military to strike forces in Tigray. Hundreds more are reported to have died, with reports of a civilian massacre.
With the communications largely cut in Tigray, the exact number of casualties is not clear.
The Ethiopian government has announced a six-month state of emergency in Tigray. A full-blown civil war could last far longer.
Given the strength of Tigray’s security forces, the conflict could well be protracted,” International Crisis Group, a non-profit organisation, says. “Tigray has a large paramilitary force and a well-drilled local militia, thought to number perhaps 250,000 troops combined.”
As Africa’s second-most populous country, Ethiopia is pivotal to stability in the Horn of Africa.
If the conflict intensifies, there are fears it could spill over into neighbouring countries. There have already been reports of missiles fired into Eritrea and 27,000 refugees fleeing to Sudan.
There is also a concern that the conflict could exacerbate ethnic tensions elsewhere in Ethiopia.
I found this prayer on the website Jah-Rastafari.com…..
We give thanks to You,
Every soul and heart is lifted up to You,
Undisturbed name, honored with the name ‘God’ and praised with the name ‘Father’.
For to everyone and everything (comes) the fatherly kindness and affection and love, and any teaching there may be that is sweet and plain, giving us mind, speech, (and) knowledge:
Mind, so that we may understand You,
Speech, so that we may expound You,
Knowledge, so that we may know You.
We rejoice, having been illuminated by Your knowledge.
We rejoice because You have shown us Yourself.
We rejoice because while we were in (the) body, You have made us divine through Your knowledge.
The thanksgiving of the man who attains to You is one thing: that we know You.
We have known You, intellectual light.
Life of life, we have known You.
Womb of every creature, we have known You.
Womb pregnant with the nature of the Father, we have known You.
Eternal permanence of the begetting Father, thus have we worshiped Your goodness.
There is one petition that we ask:
That we would be preserved in knowledge.
And there is one protection that we desire:
That we not stumble in this kind of life.
Oh no….Lenny has just managed to be a liability again! My son has just come running into the room where I’m sat, Lenny has managed to get up onto a surface and steal some cooked rib bones….the ‘smash and grab’ dog strikes again. Not good for him! There are many things that can go wrong and make him ill. We’ve just fed him a couple of slices of bread to protect his stomach and my son is setting an alarm every hour to check him, just in case we need to take him to the vets. You will know, I suppose, whether he has managed to survive his bad behaviour if you see me tomorrow. If I’m not there it is because I am dealing with a naughty staffy and the consequences of his actions. If I am there, it means he has lived to continue his food thefts.
The winter tasks are still priority here….I think the next thing is to get the steering sorted on the farm vehicle. It’s amazing….it’s an all-surface, all-weather, go-anywhere sort of vehicle (that usually wears a whole jacket made of mud 😊) that we’ve had for over 10 years but suddenly the power steering on it has gone. I don’t think driving it like that on ice and snow would be any sort of fun. So, I need to get the iron fireplace and all the tiles out of it, get it to the garage and see if they can stick it back together for me. It’s the vehicle that I get all the animal feed and bales of sawdust for animal bedding so I need it back on the road as quickly as possible
Right, I’m going to need to email this to Pete so he can get it printed out. He keeps complaining that we seem to be running out of certain colours faster than ever….red, green and erm….gold!! Anyone got any ideas why?! 😊