One Man’s Trash, Another Man’s Treasure

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving” (Colossians 3:23, 24).

I was sitting outside reading my morning devotions when a familiar song floated through the air to my listening ears. I had just finished praying the verse above for my husband, asking the Lord to bless him in his work. These were the words stuck in my mind, “I pray my husband has a desire to serve You and to work unto You no matter what his job title states”[i].

The next sound I heard was the lyric, “Great are You, Lord” coming from somewhere in front of my house. I could hear what sounded like a bus or a truck running, and the worship song was playing above the idling vehicle, fairly loud for the early morning hour. I started to sing along, “All the earth will shout your praise, our hearts will cry, these bones will sing, Great are You, Lord!” Then I started to cry. The words so poignantly resounded with my prayers. And all so unexpectedly. It amazed me how the song mingled with my words, lifting a sweet fragrance of prayer.

Who was this, playing this song in my front yard, at exactly this moment? I didn’t know, but I had to find out. I tip-toed carefully through the wet grass in my flip-flops to get a peek around the corner before whoever it was pulled away. What I saw surprised me further. A trash truck. A large, white, Rumpke truck in front of the neighbor’s house, and men outside of it, loading the trash, and worshipping God.

Is it just me, or is this the perfect illustration of glorifying God in our work? The work is hard – heavy lifting, dirty, smelly. Literally, garbage. Handling garbage. All day, every day. And the men are worshipping, as they work. Trash.  

I felt conviction in my spirit. The things I bemoan about my daily work. The “trash” I just want to go away because I don’t want to deal with it again today. Pray about it AGAIN today. Think about it, much less worship in it, today. Truly, my trash is often just trash. But today, my trash was transformed into treasure. Something about this scene invigorated me. Inspired me to truly want to serve the Lord in all my “garbage”.

This is my Father’s world, and to my listening ears
All nature sings, and round me rings, the music of the spheres.

This is my Father’s world: I rest me in the thought
Of rocks and trees, of skies and seas, His hand the wonders wrought.

This is my Father’s world: the birds their carols raise,
The morning light, the lily white, declare their Maker’s praise.

This is my Father’s world: He shines in all that’s fair;
In the rustling grass I hear Him pass, He speaks to me everywhere.

Emphasis: everywhere.

A paean of praise rises, even in the rumble of a Rumpke truck. Treasure that in your heart today as you rise to the work set before you.

[i] “Thirty-One Prayers for my Husband, Seeing God Move in His Heart” by: Jennifer Smith

Happy Thanksgiving

I am a thanksgiving machine today in the kitchen. I cranked out two pumpkin pies, two cheesecakes, two loaves of cranberry bread, cranberry sauce, and pumpkin ice cream (a favorite – young and old!). I picked up a whopper of a turkey today from the turkey farm down the road. My husband and I will be rising early to start cooking all 27.4 lbs. of our big boy. We are expecting a crowd of hungry people, or at least, we hope so. If not, we are facing turkey leftovers to infinity. I am finally sitting down, listening to the hum of the dishwasher, mentally ordering my steps for the morning. It’s no small thing to get all the food ready, and still hot, at precisely the same time. It’s a delicate balance, especially with my “vintage” oven (a.k.a. tiny and old). Counting on the old girl to muscle through another long day of cooking tomorrow (talking about the oven, not me!). This year I am going to try something new.  I found “23 Thanksgiving Recipes to Make in a Slower Cooker”  on Pinterest. I am going to try sweet potatoes and stuffing in two separate crock pots to take the load off my oven. Hoping for good results!

I wanted to take a minute to say, “Happy Thanksgiving” to you and yours. I am running a sale in my Etsy shop now through December 1st: 20% off everything in my shop !!!!


Have a wonderfully blessed and restful Thanksgiving, friends.




Have Yourself a Cranberry Thanksgiving

Chloe is in the foyer practicing the Nutcracker music on piano. My husband is in his office practicing guitar for worship this weekend. Jamie is watching TV between bouts of running around the room for his “ninja training” (what he claims to be doing). And I am in the kitchen up to my elbows in cranberries and pumpkin. This is Thanksgiving preparation at my house, friends. A little nuts, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Chloe was so excited when her teacher found a Nutcracker music book. She came out of her lesson today grinning widely because her teacher assigned The Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy this week. I am thankful for this change. Sugar Plum is replacing Disney’s Let it Go…a song we are all ready to let go! We heard that one for about 10 weeks while she practiced for her piano recital. So, at the moment, I am listening to the pretty tinkling of The Sugar Plum Fairy intermingled with O Holy Night and the Backyardigans….all at the same time. A little weird, but has a charm all its own.

I love my crazy life.

I made a rash decision in buying Jamie the ninja mask at the Dollar Tree. I was snookered by that cute face. It was only a buck, and Jamie loves it. But I spend entirely too much time explaining (again) why it is inappropriate to wear in public, to places like church and the library. Yesterday he was in the Christmas spirit. Much to Chloe’s dismay, Jamie decided to wear his Santa hat to the library. I was grateful it wasn’t the ninja mask. Santa is better than a ninja, I reasoned. Chloe begged to differ. And so goes our weekly stop in the library. They’re used to us, another thing I am thankful for this year.

We’ve been reading Cranberry Thanksgiving  on breaks from ninja training, and when our heads aren’t filled with visions of dancing sugar plums. This year, we tried the recipe in the back of the book, “Grandmother’s Famous Cranberry Bread” and I must say it quickly became famous around here. We gobbled up the loaf in one day. (Tip: skip the raisins and use more cranberries!) I made a fresh loaf this afternoon to go with our meal tomorrow. I think I am more excited about the bread than the pumpkin pie. It is that good, friends.

While the bread is cooling, I wanted to take a moment to wish you a Happy Thanksgiving. I pray your day is filled with the abundance of God’s blessings – grace, peace, joy, family, love, laughter…and lots of cranberry. I am thankful for YOU!

With love and thanksgiving,


PS: The Giving Thanks Sale in my art shop is good through Sunday November 30th. Enter code: GIVETHANKS2014 for 20% off your total purchase. How about them cranberries? :)