County Seat Newspaper
of Clare County

Amish Cook-Chewy Granola Bars


I glance back, I see memories.

I look in the future, I see no certainty.

I look at the moment and thank God for what I have right now.

Now when I look too long at things I don’t like in the moment, I lose hope, but when I look to the Provider of all things there’s a simple joy and hope.

Focusing on good things, such as the perfect sunny day we’re having, the blooming blue bells and bleeding hearts the children bring to me, I am thankful, but what happens when I thank my Maker for only the things that suit me? Will I always be able to find enough good things to bring me happiness? What if those good things all fade away and there’s nothing left to bring happiness?

I like how Daniel’s cousin reminded me, last week. She said, “Once we have nothing left but God we find he’s everything!”

I’m guessing that most of us have never had absolutely nothing left, but don’t we all know that feeling? When we get stripped of all the things that used to make us happy, we naturally become sad then hardened.

For me it can be big disappointments such as the death of my spouse, but then sometimes the little irritations also get to me more than I care for them to.

That reminds me of a dear widow friend of mine. Though she is not Amish, she has been a family friend for years.  As I write I wonder if perhaps Mrs. Harvey’s sweetness comes from her true thankfulness. Not only does she thank God for the good things, but also has a wellspring of thanksgiving for things she does not enjoy. Whether it’s her washer that quit working or another dilemma without her husband to help her out of it, she turns her face toward Jesus and thanks him for the problem.

Is that something that comes naturally to you? It certainly isn’t my innate response. My mind flashes back to a tidbit I journaled last winter. It was something like, “Thanking God for the hard things brings a far deeper joy than to thank for the things we like.” I scratch my head; how do I get away from that so easily? Then smiling despite of myself, I look at God and thank him for making me with such frail inclinations.

And you know, many times I do not see the blessings from the trial until much later. We may not even get a glimpse of them from this side of eternity, but that’s okay, God’s got track of them all perfectly. When we see him face to face there will be a completion of rewards for all we trusted him with.

I enjoy the innocence of little ones as they celebrate things they enjoy. Something they’ve been enjoying these days is a set of house finches which are building a nest on the front porch in a set of chimes and a robin building a nest on one of the beams on our new deck out the back toward the woods.

The process on the deck was quite intriguing to watch from the kitchen window as she started out with a bigger stick then added smaller twigs, bit of straw and all that was needed to make a soft bed for her eggs. Currently she has four eggs which she is incubating day after day. Bit by bit she is growing tamer and stays on her nest even when we are talking or singing on the deck. Hopefully in a couple weeks we’ll be able to watch her feed her babies from our kitchen table.

Lastly, I’ll wrap up with children’s favorite bars I’ve been making for them. We call them candy bars and give everyone a medium to small piece, thus having it last for more than one meal. I thank God for a growing family with a large food consumption, though it takes something to keep the ball rolling!


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