Village Victorian Bed & Breakfast
the day after…. 27 Dec 2016, 3:50 pm
What a great day we had… family time is always the best time… doesn’t matter whether it is Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, day after Christmas, or a week from next Tuesday… family is together, celebrating… the grandkids sure loved it… yet another day of opening presents under the tree… awesome!
A long time ago, back when Philip believed in Santa, my dad would always leave Santa a pipe full of tobacco, matches to light the pipe, and a shot glass filled with whiskey. Dad explained to us just how pleased Santa would be when he discovered them under the tree… and then the first thing we did Christmas morning was look to see if Santa had found them under the tree… sure enough… there was the smoked pipe, and empty shot glass… every Christmas Eve.
I mentioned my not being a keeper of days. That is one of the great things about having free will. Doesn’t matter.. I am free to keep a day special or not keep a day special. We celebrated my 80th birthday six weeks before my birthday… didn’t matter.
“One person regards one day above another, another regards every day alike. Each person must be fully convinced in his own mind. He who observes the day, observes it for the Lord…. and gives thanks to God.”
What matters is my “giving thanks to God” whether I “keep the day” or “do not keep the day. I just do it unto the Lord.
Christmas Day…. 25 Dec 2016, 6:55 pm
Lots of folks know that Constantine (way back in the 300’s AD) made Christianity the State Religion… choosing December 25th as the day to celebrate the birth of Christ in order to pacify the “pagans” in Rome… and use one of their holiday dates…
Doesn’t matter to Philip… I’ve said before that I celebrate His birth every day… one day is like any other day for me.
I do enjoy having a day every year, that we can gather together with family and friends in a true spirit of giving… since that is what God did when Jesus was born… He gave us His Son… His indescribable gift... what a gift that has been for humanity… and Philip in particular….oh my…
Since I am not a “keeper of days”… Ellen and I will actually be celebrating “Christmas” with our kids and grand-kids tomorrow…
Which will then bring us to the day after Christmas…
Christmas Eve… 24 Dec 2016, 6:46 pm
I am sitting here… thinking…. what do I write, Lord? It’s Christmas Eve… what can I say?
Next thing I know I am overwhelmed with gratefulness to the Lord… and saying thank you Lord… thank you Father… thank you for that first Christmas eve… everyone waiting…watching… for the arrival of your Son… thank you Father…
G.K. Chesterton said: “I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought”
Giving thanks to God permeates the scriptures. My favorite verse being: “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
That is where I try to live… every day… but especially thankful tonight.
Thank you for everything Father… especially for sending your Son.
today…. 23 Dec 2016, 12:11 pm
I’ve mentioned how I am working my way thru my old postings, burning most of them.. … rewriting and condensing a few of them… (like this one from April 2010)… all these things just working deeper and deeper in me over the past 7 years…
“I’ve told bits and pieces of my story in the 500 some odd postings here since I first began writing in 2007… everything changed for me on June 24, 1968. That experience with God turned my life upside down. I was told that my search was over… I had found God… and basically… now that I knew God and loved Him… I had to serve Him… then I was told what that serving of Him would look like…
Of course that was redefined for me by whatever Church system I happened to be in at the time… until I finally became a part of the perfect Church System where we now defined what serving God would look like… how sad that whole 32 year trip was…
There was a hunger down deep inside of me to “know God”…. it seemed that whatever I learned and wherever I learned it… none of it ever satisfied that hunger… I only wish that someone had told me early on, that my search was not over on June 24, 1968…. rather that it had just barely begun… and that I would not find Him in any of the Churches I went to … I would find Him as I walked with Him… and even though I would never ever completely know God… He would continue to reveal Himself day by day as I walked and talked with Him in the “garden of my life”.… but no one ever did tell me that… another sad thing…
My Father is not contained in a religious system... systems have this need to control God… bring Him down to a level they can understand and control… then teach that to others… reducing the creator of the universe to fit into pat little doctrines and theologies… I package Him… I promote Him… I distribute Him and sell Him to any and all who will buy my reduced version of Him…. another very sad thing... “
One last thought for today… No matter where we are in our journey to find God or know Him more intimately than we do today… we will never totally find Him… there is always more… I can say, after almost 50 years now, that I know I am barely scratching the surface of all that He is… and I’m having the time of my life… that is a very exciting thing… the very sad things are over for me…
it’s tomorrow! 22 Dec 2016, 5:40 pm
Tomorrow is here… it’s time to tell the rest of the story about yesterday’s plateful…
One of our favorite kick-back things to do is to sit around with our friendly neighbors, catch up on all the stories, fool around, laugh a lot, sip some wine and munch on crackers and cheese. Except that, these days, I am a man without a bottom plate who has decided it is not worth spending another $15,000 to redo everything I had done in the dental office just 6 years ago.
Call me a stingy Chicago German, a World War II kid, maybe a frugal fellow … or just a plain old ordinary cheapskate… I couldn’t handle paying more for some teeth than I paid for my second house… and almost double what I paid for my first house.
This does make the chewing of these snacks a bit more formidable… so… philip pulls out his jar of creamy peanut butter which he can handle very easily… except… Sherrie comes over, grabs the jar and proceeds to read the label rather dramatically to us. Repeating several times that “the second ingredient is sugar, followed by very bad oils and molasses…”… then there were some questions about my frugality (just how cheap are you philip that you cannot buy all natural peanut butter)…
hmmmm… gottcha wolff… you rationalized that one just like you did with the ice cream… and Sherrie said she would be happy to pay for the difference in the cost of the peanut butter if I couldn’t afford it.
Ellen picked up four different brands of all natural peanut butter today… the only ingredients being peanuts... can you imagine?
rationalizations… 21 Dec 2016, 7:31 pm
So I got up yet one more time this morning… talked to the Lord on my way to the shower… asking Him what He had in store for me today… was He going to put anything special on my plate… ya know… it turned out to be quite a plateful…
Normal start, prepped breakfast for 3… a skier in for one nite and a nice couple from Los Angeles driving thru the States… they were in Saratoga NY… wanted to stop in Vermont … looked for lodging in the Stowe area, saw us, loved what they saw and called just before 8:00pm booking 2 nites… Ellen waited up for their arrival just before midnight.
Breakfast wrapped up about 9:00, the skier left, the couple invited me to sit with them. He had read a little of my stuff on the internet and wanted to share some stories. We shared life for the next 4 hours… the guy wanted to hear my whole life story. It was an amazing time. He recognized he was on the “journey” just as we all are… all at different places… it was obvious that the Lord had sent him here to encourage him that he was heading in the right direction. Truly an amazing time… I think I covered everything that I have written on my blog, plus some things I haven’t… like how our natural mind constantly rationalizes things to make them acceptable to us.
Rationalizations… oh my… even illustrated with my story about how I almost killed myself eating ice cream… oh yes… how easily I had rationalized that one.
Then our neighbor came for a visit around 4:30pm… after a wonderful time of chatting and foolishness, we started to talk about the morning plateful… and rationalizations...
I discovered I had something else I was rationalizing… maybe tomorrow….
ever wonder… 20 Dec 2016, 7:13 pm
I had often wondered why the first thing I was told to do, as a brand new born again believer, was to get involved in a good bible believing Church. Did you ever wonder about that too? I no longer wonder. It is the deceiver… doing what he does… deceive … just one of the ways that God’s enemy gets us distracted from the only involvement we will ever need… our involvement with God Himself.
God wants us... He is not looking for the perfect church… there will never be one…. He is not looking for the perfect doctrine… there is none… He is not after the perfect religious system… structure… model… pattern… there are none… He just wants us... you and me… that’s all.
The systems are the distractions that keep us from having Him…. keeping us busy… go/go… do/do… getting us totally involved with the system… instead of with Him.
There is nothing God wants other than simply walking with Him every day… letting Him do whatever He wants to do.. as He connects me with the people He wants to connect me to… learning to love all of them with His love … learning to love every person that He brings into my life..
As I work on that… I don’t ever wonder….
full plate… 19 Dec 2016, 7:11 pm
Dealing with what He puts on my plate each day does not mean life around here is boring…. Actually, He is the only One who knows exactly what I need on my plate each moment of the day, in order to bring about His purposes in my life… and… there is always enough grace to get thru each thing… whether it be a good… a bad… or an ugly... It is called life… and life happens all day every day.
Ellen and I call it our great adventure… always different… always exciting… at times extremely challenging… rarely what I think it should be… but I wouldn’t change it for anything this world has to offer… I want His world… His way… His timing... and… Philip desperately needs them all… the goods… the bads … and the uglies… each at the right time.
I have already experienced most of what He has put on my plate for today… it was a very, very full plate… the plate is always full.
Hmmmm… I wonder what He has planned for tomorrow… hmmmm… guess I will just have to wait till morning… to find out what the first thing is that He has all set to put on my plate for the day…
He will let me know in the morning… see you then, Lord.
natural minds… 18 Dec 2016, 6:57 pm
My natural mind always tells me the best way to do absolutely everything. That “everything” should always be bigger … always better… always successful.. the best of the best. That is the way Philip looks at all he sets out to do. He prays as if everything depends on God and works as if everything depends on Philip. What a guy!!!
Only problem is… that is the opposite of what my spiritual mind tells me. My spiritual mind tells me to decrease... not increase… to become smaller... not larger… to become less... not more… to be still... not get busy… actually to cease from my work and let Him do the work…
Jesus ends up alone on a cross. Paul ends up alone in a Roman jail. John ends up alone on Patmos. Watchman Nee ends up alone in jail his last 20 years. Ozwald Chambers gets sick and dies a young man far away in a little hut in Egypt.
It is time for Philip to no longer trust his natural mind… Jesus must increase… I must decrease… just me and Him… together… walking with those He has put with me… in the place where He has put me…. dealing only with what He has put on my plate.
the deceiver… 17 Dec 2016, 5:06 pm
He has lots of names… that enemy… Satan. One of those names is the deceiver…. and he is very good at it… “deceiving even the very elect”…. the place where he does that is in my natural mind that I spoke about yesterday… that is where all the deception goes on… which is why it is so important for Philip to function from his spiritual mind… for Philip to have the mind of Christ about everything he is looking at…
Over the years I have been fascinated by Church History... where I see the same deception going on within every movement of God… men using their natural minds begin to organize the movement, structure it, form clergy/laity (the educated and the uneducated) so the educated ones can formulate and teach their doctrines to the uneducated ones…. the deceiver has achieved his purpose… God leaves the system.
Denomination after denomination has been formed because of this deception… the Holy Spirit leaves when the deception is full orbed… He moves elsewhere … and then the same thing happens once again with the next group… over and over… there are now thousands of Christian religious systems around. Each one believing their system is the best.
Then one day the Holy Spirit moved in Phil Wolff’s life… He showed me wonderful things… which Phil Wolff then organized out of his natural mind …. developing his very own perfect religious system.
And God left….