Sunday, June 15, 2014

Newsletter - 6/15/14

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Hello Dear Friends!

Well, our babies are rolling in ... or should I say rolling out of the nests.  Been seeing a lot of activity.  The new House Finches came as quadruplets hovering by the parents and shivering with starvation (not very convincing to the parents .. they took it in stride).  It wasn't long until they all found the birdbath and had some appropriate summer time fun.  View a previous year's video of a Papa and Baby Finch.

I have only seen on young Northern Cardinal so that nest must have had some challenges.  The Black-capped Chickadees have been split between parents so I'm not sure if there's more than two or not.  They like hiding behind the leaves in the trees.  The baby Carolina Wrens are always such a sweet treat.  I consider that bird my favorite bird because of its loud praise song and it's glory dance with that tail swinging in praise.  Carolina Wrens are not known to destroy nests/eggs/young of other birds like the House Wren.  The Tufted Titmice are numerous again as last year and they are the ones that enjoy their baths the most.  They get really soaked and bedraggled and then clean up good enough to attend the annual ball.  View bedraggled bather.

They wait in line on the deck to take turns bathing. I've seen a young Brown Thrasher in the woods.  They like to hide out with the young 'uns, as do the Gray Catbird.  I know the Catbirds have left both nests because they're not flying in and out, but all I see are the adults now and then.

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Squirrels Waiting For The Peanut
Sweepstakes Winnings to Arrive
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Although our squirrels have created some bird feeder challenges and also enjoyed our new vinyl deck railing when it was installed, we do love their antics.  We sit on our porch chaise chairs and watch Squirrel TV as we call it.  We don't bother to have any "real TV" reception since we live rural and gave up years ago on finding anything wholesome to watch. 

This Scripture comes to mind ...  "whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things" (Philippians 4:8).  Somehow what we saw on our TV didn't line up with what we are to keep our minds on and we finally had enough gumption to disconnect.  Hard on the flesh ... but the spirit has been soaring!

We would be overrun with squirrels if it weren't for the hawks and even though I do not like thinking of that scenario, we are also thankful that we don't have an overpopulation to deal with.  It all comes with a well balanced wildlife habitat which we strive to do our best to achieve, most times just by default.  If you build it they will come.  And if you watch them, you will laugh!

The Bible tells us that laughter is a good medicine.  I'm not one for corny jokes or slapstick comedy so it's not so easy to please me when it comes to finding something to laugh about.  I guess I'm more of a realist since I can get to belly laughing so hard that it still hurts the next day when I see something that's "real" and funny.

Thought I'd share my Top 3 Favorites:
• Bill Cosby - You Bet Your Life
• Shake Your Tail Feathers With Frostie and Ray Charles
• African Animals Get Drunk on Marula Tree Fruit

I keep a file folder on my email with links to things so that I can get some laugh time in.  It's amazing what it does for the immune system.  I published a series on laughter back a few years after getting into the year 2000 when I was editor for A Healing Moment.  You might want to access some of these articles that show scientific proof of the benefits of laughter on our bodies and mind.  You'll want to keep a Laughter Folder also!

Laugh Yourself Well
Laughter Is The Best Medicine
Laughter Health
Humor Therapy
Prescription to Laugh
Laughter as Medicine
Humor's Healing Potential

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Black Rat Snake on Driveway Smiling at Me
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We didn't see the Black Rat Snakes for over a year and were wondering if the hawks had cleared them out.  We appreciated having them since it kept the mice out of the garage.  Mice can be very destructive when they get inside of car engines where there is tubing that carries oil to various places.  One little nibble and you've got a slow leak onto the garage floor.  This snake wasn't the one we'd seen before because it was much smaller although it was about 2 feet long.  This charmer was a younger one.

The downside is that snakes also enjoy eating bird's eggs and baby birds and that's heartbreaking since we did in previous years have one that we believe interfered with the Gray Catbird's nest that was beside the screened porch.  They are part of the balance of nature and we welcome them into our wildlife habitat because they do add a lot of good balance.  Black Rat Snakes are very docile.  They are not at all aggressive towards humans so I'm glad that is the kind of snake that chooses to live amongst us ... a peaceful one.

Did you know? .... You don’t need a prescription to get drugs in tiny doses. They're found in our nation's water supply, and reported in a new study, in higher amounts than drug companies anticipated.  They are released into the water supply through urine and flushing old drugs down the toilet. It’s well known by now that pharmaceuticals are affecting fish, frogs and lobsters­.  Small amounts of estrogen cause male fish to develop eggs.  We need to be filtering our water, but is there a household unit that takes drugs out?

Nick Schroeck, executive director of the Great Lakes Environmental Law Center in Detroit, says, “All of these drugs out there on the market are going to be discharged into the environment and we don’t know what the effects are, because there’s no requirement to do an assessment on the front end.  We’re not trying to scare anyone, but we need to know what these chemical compounds will do to the environment and what are the long-term effects for humans. No one seems to know.” Read the entire story here.

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Foxglove - Source of Digitalis
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It's becoming more and more important to filter your own water which not only saves you money but eliminates all those plastic bottles in the landfill.  Besides considering the fact that bottled water is not a purse source of drinking water.  Reverse-osmosis is the only thing I know of that will take drugs out.  They use the process to convert sea water to drinking water on ships. This makes me very diligent in praying a blessing over what I eat and drink.  Psalm 91 offers us protection from this and worse things, but we have to speak out those promises to activate them, just as God spoke out and created the entire earth.

I was listening to a free webinar on "Why Herbs?" and the safety of modern drugs and how the FDA continues to pull herbs off the marketplace that they consider toxic.  Quite interesting .... for thousands of years, herbs have been mankind's primary source of medicine and even now 25% of all "modern" medicine is made from a medicinal plant.  The problem with taking an active constituent out of a plant and isolating it into a chemical compound is you leave out God's balance of nature with that plant.  You can't improve on God's design without a down side.

That's why they pull some of these herbs from the marketplace.  They find a toxic component and say the herb is bad, toxic and can cause death.  If you eat these foods (and many others) you may be in trouble.  Carrots contain carototoxin, a fairly potent nerve poison and myristicin, a hallucinogenic drug.  Radishes and broccoli contain substances that cause goiters.  Potatoes, eggplant, tomatoes and peppers contain solanine which interferes with the transmission of nerve impulses.  Apples contain phlorizin which interferes with enzyme systems.  Oranges have tangeretine which is toxic to developing embryos. 

Gee whiz, wish they would be as up front as that with the drugs they push.  Herbs have thousands of years of testimonials and results ... while drug studies are generally only 6-8 weeks long so they can get to manufacturing them.  Problem is that most problems don't show up until months of use.

Did you know that 50% of all medications approved are withdrawn within 10 years later for harmful side effects and many of them are left out there for years after "discovering" this information.  Iatragenic disease (a condition occurring as the result of treatment by a health professional) is not far behind heart disease and cancer as leading causes of death.  Go figure that one out.

While we're on the topic of "modern" medicine, my sweet friend, Rainbow, sent me a link about new technologies with ultrasound that are considered non-invasive compared to surgery.  The video is from Israel.  After sharing the link with another friend of mine, he informed me he had a friend who was a director on the board of the Focus Ultrasound Foundation that is researching this in the USA.  It is based right here in Charlottesville, Virginia.  How surprising!  They not only have clinical trials available to participate in, but there are treatment centers set up  around the country for specific health problems that the procedure now works on.  I've always considered surgery so invasive.  I have thought that little gadget that Bones had on Star Trek was a much better way to go with internal health issues. 

As you know I have refused open heart surgery.  I just can't wrap my mind around it.  It looks so barbaric.  The areas of health care it is now involved in include cardiovascular, endocrine, women's health, musculoskeletal, neurological and certain types of cancers.  I find it encouraging that "modern medicine" will one day truly be modern with more doctors being called to the world of doctoring rather than choosing it as a good income business decision.  There seem to be so few that are in touch with their patients due to quotas they have to meet and so little time with the patient.  Check out the link above to the foundation to get all kinds of "how it works" information and research publications.

Moving on to a spiritual topic ... I have a friend in Texas who has a granddaughter that has seen her guardian angel.  The child was going through a rough time and during part of it she would be reassured by this angelic presence that she saw.  How sweet and comforting.  We all have angels assigned to us and their purpose is to minister to us (Heb. 1:14).  In Psalm 91 we find that angels are very involved in our lives.  I think of all the battles and times that God dispatched angels to various situations for Israel.  We're probably  most familiar with Gehazi, Elisha's servant where he saw only the army that had the city surrounded and Elisha asked God to open his eyes so he could see the "real" world.

There are books written on how to command your "ministering spirits" but there is no Scriptural example of this being done in the Bible and no instruction to do so either.  Angels are dispatched by God Almighty, but we do have a role to play in our relationship with God. In Psalm 91:1 it's those who "dwell in the secret place of the Most High," that are able to have angels ministering to them.  Verse 2 instructs us to say that "the Lord is our refuge and fortress" and that "we are trusting in Him." 

Verse 14 says, "Because you have set your love upon Me, therefore will I deliver you."  It's our faith/trust in God and His faithfulness to us that releases these heavenly beings to help us in our earthly life.  They were created for this purpose, so speak forth your faith that comes with your close relationship to Him and see the angels move on your behalf.  I love this Scripture since it creates such a great word picture in my mind to keep my faith centered on Him.

Donna on Butterfly Bench in Front Garden
"The name of the LORD is a strong tower: the righteous run into it, and are safe" (Proverbs 18:10).

God Almighty "has measured the waters in the hollow of His hand, and with the breadth of His hand marked off the heavens"  (Is. 40:12).  That's a big God.  And then consider that Psalm 91:1 says we can "abide under the shadow of the Almighty."  Now that's one very big shadow!  I believe it will cover any circumstance we have!

Consider your trust in the Lord.  Ask God if you are truly trusting in Him.  I was shocked not long ago to find out that I wasn't when I always said I was.  It was a religious idea that had been implanted in my mind, but had not been implemented in my heart.  It's took me many months to reach a place where I knew I really did trust in Him.  I pray you will make sure of your presence there also.

Have a blessed time in the Secret Place this week,

P.S. Anything in here that might help somebody you know?
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