Ninety and Nine

I have not heard this sung or played for decades, but when I was a child it was a very popular choice for “special music” in church.

The Ninety and Nine

Elizabeth C. Clephane

There were ninety and nine that safely lay
In the shelter of the fold.
But one was out on the hills away,
Far off from the gates of gold.
Away on the mountains wild and bare.
Away from the tender Shepherd’s care.
Away from the tender Shepherd’s care.

“Lord, Thou hast here Thy ninety and nine;
Are they not enough for Thee?”
But the Shepherd made answer: “This of Mine
Has wandered away from Me;
And although the road be rough and steep,
I go to the desert to find My sheep,
I go to the desert to find My sheep.”

But none of the ransomed ever knew
How deep were the waters crossed;
Nor how dark was the night the Lord passed through
Ere He found His sheep that was lost.
Out in the desert He heard its cry,
Sick and helpless and ready to die;
Sick and helpless and ready to die.

“Lord, whence are those blood drops all the way
That mark out the mountain’s track?”
“They were shed for one who had gone astray
Ere the Shepherd could bring him back.”
“Lord, whence are Thy hands so rent and torn?”
“They are pierced tonight by many a thorn;
They are pierced tonight by many a thorn.”

And all through the mountains, thunder riven
And up from the rocky steep,
There arose a glad cry to the gate of Heaven,
“Rejoice! I have found My sheep!”
And the angels echoed around the throne,
“Rejoice, for the Lord brings back His own!
Rejoice, for the Lord brings back His own!”


The Friday Before

Today was the day of doom, the day I had to go to Aldi. This time I was doing the chai party shopping. It’s going to be a busy weekend. Lina’s leaving on a trip, we have a chai party and house guests to get ready for, and there is a potluck at church on Sunday. I think I’d better get the music for church figured out tomorrow morning!

I have been working on some revisions, and that seems to be sucking up all my creativity at the moment. Sorry about that.

94 Years and Counting

Today Lina and I went on a little outing. I had called my dear friend Jean on Monday and asked if we could come take her out to lunch today. Jean is 94 years old and still goes in to work at her son’s gun shop every day.

So we drove to Henderson, the town where Jean lives, and when we got to the shop, she was at the front of the store waiting. We have known Jean for about 25 years, since we were first invited to speak at her church during the time when we were preparing to go to Zambia as missionaries. She taught the toddler Sunday School class and therefore taught all our kids except Lina. She was a surrogate grandmother to our kids when they were growing up.

She is moving a lot more slowly now, and needs a cane to lean on when she walks. We took her to a restaurant across the street and had such a nice visit. She is a sweet, sweet lady. It was hard to hear Jean’s soft voice over the hubbub at the restaurant, so we went back to the shop and visited some more. That’s where I’ll go if I ever decide I need a firearm!

She told us stories of her early life, and how she had saved her husband’s GI salary during World War II so they could buy their first house–for $2200!

After saying goodbye to Jean, we drove over to her church, which we also attended for several years. The church was severely damaged in a tornado 18 months ago, and the repairs have just finally been completed. There is a new roof and a new section of wall so it looks at little different, but I am so glad they can move back into that building. While we were there, the pastor drove up so we stopped to visit with him for a few minutes too.

The town of Henderson is such a lovely small town, and seems to have more than its fair share of beautiful houses. I miss driving there every week. It is a beautiful drive, so relaxing and enjoyable. After yesterday’s rain, the sunshine was glorious.


Rainy Day

It was a very rainy Valentine’s Day. This morning it was pouring rain and very gloomy. I admit I curled up on my bed under a comforter and did some reading. I cancelled my appointment as I hadn’t managed to gather all the necessary papers.

I am reading through a book that I’m finding very helpful as I contemplate starting a new writing project this spring.

Lina has now joined Spencer in sickness. I am probably doomed.

4-H Day

Today was a pretty normal school day, and then this afternoon Jasper had his 4-H meeting. I dropped him off instead of staying with him as I have done in the past. He didn’t like it. I sure enjoyed having the free time though!

I tried to get some paperwork filled out. I have an appointment tomorrow that I think is going to be totally pointless. but I’m trying to get stuff together for it.

What a Friend

One of my favorite hymns to sing and to play. I don’t think I have ever seen that last verse before.

What a Friend We Have in Jesus

Joseph M. Scriven

What a Friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer!
O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.

Have we trials and temptations? Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged; take it to the Lord in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness; take it to the Lord in prayer.

Are we weak and heavy laden, cumbered with a load of care?
Precious Savior, still our refuge, take it to the Lord in prayer.
Do your friends despise, forsake you? Take it to the Lord in prayer!
In His arms He’ll take and shield you; you will find a solace there.

Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised Thou wilt all our burdens bear
May we ever, Lord, be bringing all to Thee in earnest prayer.
Soon in glory bright unclouded there will be no need for prayer
Rapture, praise and endless worship will be our sweet portion there.


Home Again

That’s the main news of today. My husband has arrived safely home again. We got some housework done and Jasper and I actually did a little bit of school. And I worked on music and spent way too long untangling a skein of yarn. It is good to have my husband back.

So Sad

I don’t know what to say about today. I’m reeling from shock. Lina and I did go grocery shopping at Aldi this morning, and encountered a lady who used to work for my husband. I also got my four rows knitted and washed some laundry and did some cleaning in the laundry room.

But this evening I was checking my Facebook feed and I saw a post that broke my heart. One of my dear friends posted that her 24-year-old son ended his life on Tuesday. I have known him since he was a toddler. Their family lived in a nearby town and for many years when our kids were little, my kids and I would drive over there once a month so the kids could play together and the moms could visit.

As our kids got older, it was harder and harder for us all to get together, so in recent years I have gone alone to meet up with my friend from time to time. She is a single mom now and her kids are all just about grown. The son who died was an athlete who worked hard to stay in shape and wanted to be a policeman. He was often around when I visited. It is so hard to wrap my mind around the fact that he is gone, especially so soon after losing our nephew. Please pray for my friend Sybil and her family.

Sickness & Stitches

Today was a bit of a struggle, as I am trying to fend off some form of plague. Spencer is quite sick and I really hope I don’t get what he has.

Jasper and I made it through two lessons of math and another World War I documentary.

I got to talk to my husband now that he has cell phone reception and has driven back down to Atlanta.

I made an awesome supper even though I didn’t get to eat any of it. It was so awesome I wrote down the recipe so I can make it again!

I got four rows knitted. Four. Rows. That’s 2,560 stitches.

Wind, Sun, Water

Not much to say about today, to be honest. Jasper did school this morning and then he and Lina and I headed out to the lake. It was a gorgeous day, and the temperature was supposed to be about 80. Unfortunately, we thought this meant we wouldn’t need any warm clothing.

Once we got to the lake it was very windy. The wind was kind of chilly. We had a nice picnic lunch and then listened to an audiobook. Lina had brought a cloth that she could use as a wrap and was able to sit in the sunshine. I had brought a towel and ended up using it as a wrap since I had to sit in the shade!

Jasper went for a hike and eventually I went for a walk as well–it did help warm me up. It was just a beautiful day but I didn’t take any photos. The lake is lovely all year round, but at this time of year its beauty is rather austere.

By the time we headed home, I had a very sore throat and didn’t feel well. I have a feeling tomorrow might have a lot of garlic in it.