Wednesday, February 27, 2013

The Shepherdess Speaks

"Walk me to Heaven's Door"

We often hear about the ‘river of death,’ that darksome, fearsome, wide and terrible river that everyone must cross to enter the eternal realms.  We are not quite certain what awaits us or just how we will make this crossing, but, we can be certain that one day, we will stand on the banks of that river. If we are saved from sin and have served the Lord in our lifetime, We can have the assurance that Jesus will be there to take us across that mysterious river.

During my lifetime, I have walked many weary pilgrims to the banks of that river and I can almost see the gates on the other side. I have held their trembling hand as they silently slipped through the dark and misty corridor just outside that eternal door. Almost, I can hear the angels sing, can almost see the gates open. I strain to see what lies beyond. The gate closes and once again, I am left here to wait.

I say to my beloved, “If I go first, will you walk me to heaven’s door?” He smiles. “Yes. Will you walk me should I go first?”
“Yes,” I say, “I will walk you there, but take me with you this time.”

He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord God will wipe away tears from off all faces; and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the earth: for the Lord hath spoken it. And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, and he will save us: this is the Lord; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation.
Isaiah 25:8-9

Friday, February 15, 2013

My Valentine...

Ah, romance. How could the world exist without it? Impractical, you say, unrealistic, unimportant to the story? Romance paints the setting, the era, the characters, enlivens the drama, every part of your story. Ah qui, mon ami, include some romance. History is alive with it and God himself created it. 

On February 14, 2013, the day was cold, blustery and rainy, rather unusual for our southern climate, so we decided to make a special dinner in the library in front of the fire, our favorite place to be in the wintertime. Wright brought the round table for two and I thought of what dishes would work best for our special night. I chose the Bavarian Mitterteich china, made in Bavaria Germany. It is lovely with a soft muted ecru rose pattern on white, edged in gold with delicate sculpted edges. I coordinated this with burgundy and deep blue.

We started with salad and multi grain bread, pineapple, blueberries, and cottage cheese in a jelled salad topped with whipped cream. We enjoyed this course for at least half an hour

Who needs dinner after this?

While Wright added logs to the fire, I brought in the main course; pork chops in a mango salsa mixed with apricot preserves slow cooked in the crock pot and served with rice and asparagus. We ended the meal with coffee and pumpkin roll. The whole dining time took 2 hours. It was the loveliest way to celebrate with my Valentine

 A favorite table candle, the stag's head

The stag’s head candle holder is the Clan Davidson family crest and always so charming for the table. We used candlelight and firelight and some low lighting to make the ambiance romantic. Oh yes, I am a hopeless romantic!

By the fire


Sunday, February 10, 2013

From the Shapherdess

Among some clippings pinned to the flyleaf of an antique book published in 1915, were some old bits of verse and poetry. I thought this worth sharing. The book is "The Runner's Bible” and I read it almost daily. If you ever come across one, buy it. You’ll love it
Photo of Mandy on the beach


State of Mind

If you think you’re beaten, you are;
If you think you dare not, you don’t;
If you like to win but you think you can’t,
It’s almost certain you won’t.
If you think you’ll lose, you’ve lost;
For out of the world we find,
Success begins with a person’s will,
It’s all in the state of mind.

If you think you’re outclassed, you are;
You’ve got to think high to rise;
You’ve got to be sure of yourself before
You can ever win a prize.
Life’s battles don’t always go
To the strongest or fastest man;
But soon or late, the man who wins
Is the one who thinks he can!


Monday, February 4, 2013


The Last Command

 And Paul said unto the centurion and the soldiers, “Unless these men remain in the ship, you cannot be saved.” Acts 27:31

Don’t Give Up the Ship!

We have all heard the impassioned words, “Don’t give up the ship!” While visiting the Lake Erie Maritime Museum, Erie PA, I heard the story behind this quote made famous during the War of 1812. However, this wasn’t the first time those immortal words were uttered. There is something so stirring, yet so distressing in those words. To hold on to hope in the midst of a storm and battle is a challenge to every soul. 

The USS Niagara, part of the American naval fleet, War of 1812, is now docked at the Maritime museum after being raised from the lake and beautifully restored. This year marks the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Lake Erie, September 10, 1813. Our party boarded the USS Niagara for the historic presentation of the Niagara’s involvement in the War. Lake Erie a large sea-like lake bordering the northern most borders of Ohio

Being fond of reading about historic world warfare, especially in America, I had to know if any of my ancestors were involved in this bloody conflict. As it happens, many were very involved. 

I felt so privileged to run my hands over the polished wood, to stand on the deck and feel the riggings of this famous ship. The ambiance was so impressive and I felt so thankful that someone had the vision to raise and restore it.

A Short History of the Battle

The British could not say “Enough” even after their loss during the American Revolution. Another attempt to conquer the Americans by opening a way inland to the Ohio Valley through the Great Lakes was in progress.

American Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry stood ready to intercept and oppose the British war ships. During the summer of 1813, British troops occupied Detroit and depended on supplies shipped across Lake Erie. British officer, Robert Heriot Barclay was ordered to ship supplies to the Royal fleet. 

Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry was ordered to stop the supply ships. On September 10, 1813, the opposing fleets battled for over two bloody and exhausting hours on the lake. Perry's flagship, the USS Lawrence, fought largely alone as the rest of the fleet held back. With Perry’s ship badly disabled, Perry and his remaining crew rowed to the Niagara and set his battle flag to the Niagara’s mast. With a fresh ship and crew, fierce fighting ensued until every British ship was forced to surrender and the Crown lost a decisive battle where they had hoped to regain control. 

Perry had created his famous battle flag in memory of his friend Capt. James Lawrence who had spoken the famous words, “Don’t give up the ship” as he lay dying on the deck of his ship, the USS Chesapeake.

At this earlier battle in which Captain Lawrence was engaged near Boston battling against Royal Navy HMS Shannon, June 4, 1813, Capt. James Lawrence issued his last command. "Don't Give Up the Ship!". Perry was so inspired by his courage and bravery that he had the words sewn on his battle flag that flew aloft on the Niagara during the Battle of Lake Erie.

Today, this is still the last command from our Captain, the Lord Jesus Christ.

“Don’t give up the ship”