Sunday, December 20, 2015

Bring Me (Advent Poem 2015)

Bring Me
Advent Poem 2015
by Virginia Knowles

Bring me to wholeness, healing wholeness
That I may become a balm of mercy
In this shattered, splintered world.

Bring me to peace, perfect peace
That I may make harmony
Where there is chaos and conflict.

Bring me to hope, holy hope
That I may shine your gracious light
In the midst of darkness and despair.

Bring me to joy, genuine joy,
That I may sing a merry melody
To lift and fill a weary heart.

Bring me to love, lasting love
That I may practice compassion
Wherever there is a hungry body or wounded soul.

Bring me to Jesus, just Jesus
And I will find in Him
Wholeness, peace, hope, joy, and love.


This year - a challenging one among many - I know how much I need to receive wholeness, peace, hope, joy, and love. And that what I receive for my spiritual sustenance must be a constant fresh flow. It is easy to disconnect and run dry. I am no Super Saint here to save the world. I am one who is coming to Jesus and then turning around to share what he offers. I can only give what I have received. 

This Christmas, all year: Jesus.

Virginia Knowles

P.S. #1: I try to keep this practical and not just theoretical. Tonight I am going to a monthly outreach organized by my daughter Julia at a motel where families live in transition. Many of our friends who live in the nearby woods will also attend. We are caroling, serving cookies and hot chocolate, and giving out Christmas gifts and clothing. I am bringing new fleece blankets, new socks, and some gift cards to the local dollar store. What can you do to help homeless neighbors near you? Here are some ideas: 13 Ways to Help People Who Are Homeless

P.S. #2: Every year I write at least one Advent poem. Here are the others:

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Thanksgiving 2015 in Pictures

Our family
Thanksgiving 2015
Ten children and two sons-in-law
Five grandchildren plus one on the way
(photo by my friend Jessica)

I bought an extra card table,
the very last one available at Walmart!
My autumn table cloth shrank last month,
so I bought another shorter plaid one
and layered it over a white linen cloth.
I doubled the first one over and used it for
one of the card tables.

Our side dishes, most of which
my adult daughters prepared.
I did two kinds of stuffing,
one without meat products for a
vegetarian daughter.
We also don't serve pork,
since one daughter's family eats kosher.

Challah bread surrounded by brown rolls.

Roasted vegetables served in an
antique china bowl from my grandmother.

My fifth daughter, who is a ceramics major,
crafted this bowl.

My oldest daughter's family.

Baby #4 is a girl!

My second daughter's family

He found the butter!
Too bad he's on a dairy free diet!

My third daughter

My fourth daughter

My fifth daughter

My first son and first son-in-law

My second son

My sixth daughter

My third son,
with Nerf gun

My seventh daughter

We invited my sweet friend Jessica and her five kids for dessert.
I am so glad they came.

Counting for hide and seek

I remembered to give my daughter
a Hanukkah box before she left.

That was our Thanksgiving! I hope you enjoyed our photos!

Grace and peace,
Virginia Knowles

Friday, November 27, 2015

Trades of Hope HALF PRICE SALE until November 30!

Hello friends!

I joined up with Trades of Hope as a Compassionate Entrepreneur back in the spring, but life got crazy and I haven't really pursued it yet. Here's the post I wrote back then.

However, I just got wind of an astounding Black Friday sale that is good until November 30. Twelve items are now 50% off! I thought I'd give them a feature spot on my blog to make it easy for you to find them on their web site. The prices listed with the pictures are the sale prices.

Trades of Hope is a Fair Trade company which empowers women around the globe, especially in Third World countries, to earn a living wage to support their families and communities. It's an amazing concept! 

To see more details or order any of these gorgeous Fair Trade items click on the red product name link under each picture. You will also get a small glimpse of the plight and the opportunities facing the women who make these accessories. 

Cobalt Infinity Scarf from Nepal

Erin Scarf from India

Delhi Necklace from India

Silver Night Necklace from India

Valor Necklace from India

Ivory Sands Cuff from India

Mayan Clutch from Guatemala

Quatrefoil Frame from India

Solid Wood Game from India

In addition to the sale priced items, you can browse through dozens of other stunning Fair Trade accessories and home decor items at my Trades of Hope page.

Just in time for Christmas...

Haitian Vintage Ornament Set for $30

Ceramic Nativity Set for $26

Turtle Backpack from Guatemala for $26

My other favorites are:

Bright Stripes Shoulder Bag for $30 (on sale, limited time only)
Floral Vines Scarf for $18
(on sale, limited time only)

Charmed Peace Bracelet for $20
(on sale, limited time only)

Haiti Signature Bracelet for $18

The Kala Necklace for $26
The Katie Necklace from Uganda for $24

The Mumbai Earrings Set (2 pair) for $28

Let me know if you have any questions!

Virginia Knowles
Trades of Hope

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