The Glory Has Departed


Norma Boeckler, Artist in Residence

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Thursday, July 14, 2016

Big Storm Arriving


We kept preparing for the big storm, and it just arrived, although it may peak in a few hours. I was outside talking to Mr. Gardener over the fence. We were both identifying flowers back and forth, discussing hummingbirds, which are fairly easy to find around here.

He told me what a disaster his honeysuckle was, threatening to take over several properties. I told him I planted it too, but he said, "That's fine with me. I just let mine go too long." Mine is barely started in its second year but promises to be beautiful when it spreads out. I planned the Wild Garden to let it spread across the back area as it saw fit, using the old tree trunk as its initial display.

Thunder and lightning encouraged us to go inside.

Our helper arrived earlier with another load of cardboard. We weighted it down with mulch and manure bags. In the back yard, with the wind kicking up, I had all kinds of weights on yesterday's cardboard, which now covers 1/2 of the Hosta Garden. Apart from some Blackberries and Wild Strawberries, that garden will be all Hosta.

The Blackberries and Wild Strawberries surprise me with their tolerance for shade. The Wild Strawberries bloomed with yellow flowers in the deepest shade in the early spring and have been bearing fruit ever since. They are a good cover crop, filling in wherever they are planted and watered.
The birds are engineered by God to spread their favorite foods, so the popularity of the Jackson Bird Paradise has led to an abundance of Pokeweed, Wild Strawberries, and unknown weeds.

Sassy saw me take some extra rolls out to the bird-feeder, a waste of food from her point of view. I gave her a little bit of cornbread and the corner of a biscuit. Yesterday I caught her with stale bread from the backyard, as if she had to scrounge food from the birds. Sassy dropped it fast.



Cardboard Effect
I first learned about using cardboard from a Kindle book on mulching. Secondly, I learned that Jessica Walliser covers an area with cardboard in the fall and plants tomatoes in holes in it in the late spring. Voila - almost no weeds.

We had two gardens that had been mulched with newspapers and shredded wood mulch. In time the weedy grass began to take over where we had no plants. Two areas were mowed and therefore coated with grass. That would suppress weeds for a time, but feed them as the dried plant material feeds the soil creatures - earthworms, bacteria, protozoa, slugs, nematodes, and fungi. With cardboard on top, the composting takes place faster and keeps almost all weeds from breaking forth into freedom.

Power-packed Purslane.

Weeds are God's Creation to hold, build, and improve the soil. Many so-called weeds are great food sources too. I had tons of Purslane in Midland, Michigan, and despaired of pulling it all out from around my sweet corn. I read it was good to eat raw - and crunchy. So I ate Purslane and another nutritious weed - Goosefoot. Dandelion is probably the most nutritious of all the weeds.



I never pull out Dandelions and caution our helper to leave the plants alone. They have not taken over the garden. We usually leave clover alone. even in patches in the garden, especially early, because the plant is building nitrogen and feeding the bees. If the clover gets mixed with the hated Bermuda grass (aka Wire Grass), we cover it up with cardboard and mulch.

Bermuda grass is pervasive and plants itself in octopus fashion, in every direction.

The lawn areas are now about 80% clover, so the bees are well fed.

Weeds lose their ignominy when they are useful. Around here, Pokeweed is used by old-times for salad and by the birds for their food. I once heard of two elderly brothers who raised Dandelions for their leaves and made wine from the flowers. The brothers were known for their excellent health.

The Gospel for this coming Sunday is clear about the distinction in plants. The Creating Word used His own Creation to illustrate His truths.

Matthew 7:15-21King James Version (KJV)

15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

This Passage Above, When Illustrated as Figs From Thistles, Drove WELS-ELS Wild with Anger

I published a critique of David Valleskey's odious Church Growth essay, because WELS Pastor Steve Spencer asked me to address it. No WELS pastor had the guts to write any criticism, but some wanted the false doctrine of Mequon addressed. (So convenient it is, to call me nasty for doing what the timid cannot - write against false doctrine.)

Bethany Supposedly Lutheran Seminary took this out on LI, because - like WELS - they did not have the guts to phone, write, or email me. The great heroes of the Faith at Bethany - Gay Schmeling and future Pope John the Malefactor - thought they were justified in their rude, unethical bullying. I suppose if I allowed myself to be whipped on the posterior during initiation at Northwester College (WELS), as Schmeling was, then I would still be a scared little yes-man.

By the way, no one in WELS in the Little Sect on the Prairie ever wrote a letter or article agreeing with anything I wrote against false doctrine. Like bunnies afraid of thunder, they hid in their warrnes and drank their booze to calm their nerves.

Luther's distinction about this passage is clear to anyone who has gardened, farmed, or walked outdoors.

The good tree is the believer. Only good fruit can come from the good tree.

The corrupt tree is the unbeliever and false teacher. Only evil fruit can come from that.

Valleskey's argument in his absurd essay is this - Fuller Seminary - where he studied with F. Bivens - is the thistle that produces figs, delicious fruit that grows on the thorny weeds of false doctrine and unbelief!

Borrowing from Fuller Seminary is "spoiling the Egyptians, using the gold and jewels of C. Peter Wagner and McGavran."

One good example thistles growing on thistle plants is the way Valleskey and Bivens denied their study at Fuller and also bragged about it. Timorous retailers of teaching against Luther are bound to deceive, instead of saying,

"We reject Justification by Faith. We ignore the Means of Grace. We do not trust the efficacy of the Word of God."

The LCMS and ELCA are just as bad about promoting false doctrine because they reject Justification by Faith in exactly the same way.

F. Bivens - proud but furtive Fuller Seminary alumnus.

Three out of four promoted Church Growth -
one went to state prison for molesting little girls in his parish.

Jay Webber on the far left, Synodical Conference specialist in unbelief.