Sunday, February 26, 2006

February's almost gone...

Betsy Blue Eyes!

This week has been so busy I haven't had much time to blog. John and I did drive to Portland for supper one night this week and really enjoyed listening to Christian music and just cherishing our time together. Today we had a special service at church to honor our "retiring" pastor and his wife. They really aren't retiring...he's going to be our care pastor and knowing them, they'll be making lots of trips to mission fields. They have four children who are grown and married and all serving the Lord in other countries. It was a very sweet service and made us realize how much Max and Dixie have touched everyone's lives in our church family.
On the personal side, Myron got the job with Gospel Light and will still be able to work from his home! He does have to go to California the week after next for meetings so Molly and Betsy are driving down to spend the week with us!!! That will be so much fun! I sure have something to look forward to this week!

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Family in Ecuador...

After seeing "End of the Spear" and reading Steve Saint's book of the same title, I've been really interested in the mission field in Ecuador. John has a cousin who has been a missionary there for many years. We haven't seen her in several years so I researched her name on the internet. Isn't the internet amazing?! I found her immediately! Her name is Sharon Ranalli and there's even a photo of her. I also found her son Chris' website...he and his family are also missionaries there. The internet is such a great tool for communicating with other Christians! I plan to reconnect with Sharon and learn how we can help support her ministry.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Memorial Service...

Tonight I listened to a memorial service that took place 50 years ago. It was a week after the five missionary men were killed in Ecuador by the Waodani (also known as Auca) indians who they were trying to evangelize. It was so moving to hear how their lives had already impacted the Christian community and the world. I'm reading the book "End of the Spear" by Steve Saint. He is the son of Nate Saint, one of the five killed. Since seeing the movie, I've been trying to learn as much as I can about the story and it has really touched my heart. The Holy Spirit has been revealing to me my lack of faith and trust in Him and has shown me that I can be useful in his kingdom despite my physical limitations. He will guide me and give me strength...equip me for the work that is to be done.
Here is the scripture that concluded their memorial service.

2 Corinthians 5:1-8

For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.
For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed with our habitation which is from heaven, if indeed, having been clothed, we shall not be found naked.
For we who are in this tent groan, being burdened, not because we want to be unclothed, but further clothed, that mortality may be swallowed up by life.
Now He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who also has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.
So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord.
For we walk by faith, not by sight.
We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

More photos from Michigan...

Effective Parenting in a Defective World...

John and I lead the Sonseekers Sunday school class at church. They're a wonderful group of young marrieds...a few newlyweds and some with children from newborns up to age 13. They are such an encouragement to us and we learn so much from them. We started a DVD series today titled "Effective Parenting in a Defective World" by Chip Ingram. The first lesson challenged us to parent with clear-cut objectives instead of fear. We all fear the things of this world that can lead our children into sin and poor choices. But parenting with the focus on godly objectives can help us to direct our children without the fear. Our goal should be to lead our children not to success as the world sees it but to a Christ-centered holiness. We should desire to help them become like Jesus--kind, disciplined, holy, pure, Christ-centered. It's a struggle between God's dream vs. the world's dream for your child. The world has false goals of success, money, materialism but God's goal is for them "to be conformed to the likeness of His Son." (Romans 8:29b) The first key to that is to practice what we teach our children by modeling that holiness and Christ-centeredness in our own lives. They're going to imitate us whether we like it or not so it's incumbent on us to be models that we'd want them to imitate! "A student is not above his teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like his teacher." (Luke 6:40) I'm very excited about the precepts we're learning in this class and it encourages me to model Christ to all the children in my life...grandchildren, kids at the library, church...and anywhere else I encounter them. They ARE the future...either in Christ or completely in the fallen world. John and I can see a lot of the mistakes we made in our parenting...fortunately the Lord still honored our efforts and both of our children are serving Him. But it's exciting that we're going to get another chance by being a godly influence in the life of our precious Granddaughter, Betsy!

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Betsy's Toybox

My Dad built Betsy a new oak toy box. It's really beautiful...I know it will be a very special gift to her as she grows older. My Dad is 79 but still very active and skilled at woodworking. We took the toy box with us to Michigan and Molly and Myron were thrilled!

Weekend in Michigan

We spent Friday through Sunday with Myron, Molly and Betsy. It was so fun to see them again and see how much the baby has changed. She's really noticing the world around her and looks you right in the eye as if she's reading your expression. Saturday night we kept her overnight so Myron and Molly could celebrate Valentine's day a little early with a romantic night out! We had a lot of fun playing with her and she slept all night! It was hard to leave on Sunday...I sure wish we lived closer!

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Great news!

Tonight our congregation voted to call Bob Hopkins as our pastor! It was really great because he had an overwhelming majority of the vote. We've really seen God at work in this whole process. It began last August and culminated with the search committee and the elder board approving him unanimously! Our constitution requires unanimous consent from those boards before bringing it to the congregation. Everyone there seemed really excited and applauded when our head elder called Bob after the vote and he accepted the call to come. We're really trusting and believing that God has great plans for our church and it's outreach in our community! God is so faithful!

Sunday, February 05, 2006

I don't believe in coincidences...

Isn't it amazing the way God works?!!

Teen saves life of woman who saved him
N.Y. teen performs Heimlich on nurse who gave him CPR years earlier

NBC News
Updated: 4:35 p.m. ET Feb. 5, 2006
Call it a simple twist of fate — times two: A teenager in western New York state has saved the life of the same woman who years ago saved his life. Seven years ago, Kevin Stephan of Lancaster, N.Y., was a bat boy for his younger brother’s Little League baseball team. A player who was warming up accidentally hit him in the chest with a bat. Kevin’s heart stopped beating. “All I remember is that I dropped the bat off, and all of a sudden just got hit in the chest with something, and I turned around and passed out,” Stephan said. Fortunately, a nurse whose son played on that team was able to revive him and save his life.“I started CPR on him and he came back,” Penny Brown said. Stephan’s mother said he was extremely fortunate. Brown was supposed to be at work that night, but was given the day off at the last minute. Now comes the really interesting part. Last week that same nurse was eating at the Hillview Restaurant in Depew, N.Y., when she began to choke on her food. Witnesses say patrons were screaming for someone to help her.
“The food wasn’t going anywhere and I totally couldn’t breathe,” Penny said. “It was very frightening.” Restaurant employees yelled for Stephan to come out and help. “They knew I was a volunteer firefighter and they called me over and I did the Heimlich, and I guess you could say I saved Mrs. Brown,” Stephan said. At the restaurant, they realized the amazing twist of fate they had just witnessed. Seven years ago, Brown had saved Stephan's life. Now at age 17, he had returned the favor. “It's almost unbelievable,” said Stephan, who is also an Eagle Scout. “The fact that it has been two individuals, that you know, helped each other out in a pretty dire situation, it's pretty extraordinary,” Brown said. On Saturday, the two met again at the Bowmansville, N.Y., Fire Hall where Stephan is a junior firefighter. He presented her with a bouquet of flowers, and his parents were also there to greet Brown.

Romans 8:38-39

This is my favorite verse from God's has such power and assurance!
"For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."

Romans 8:38-39

Christ is at work...

Church was so encouraging today. Pastor Bob Hopkins, the man who will potentially be our new pastor, gave a wonderful sermon and was very inspiring. His testimony of Christ's work in his life was a sermon in itself. He also talked about how we can know God's will in our lives through the confirmation of God's Word, the conviction of the Holy Spirit, the circumstances that God allows in our lives, and the counsel of mature, godly Christians. His heart for the Lord was so apparent and I think he really connected with the congregation. We had a big all-church carry-in after a Q & A session with Bob, Ginger and their family. I'm really praying that this is the man that God wants for our church and community. It was really nice to see the whole church together too. Since we usually attend the 2nd service we often miss seeing a lot of our friends that attend the 1st one. My friend Cathy and I got to catch up a little on the news of our kids and of course I had to share photos of Betsy. It's great to have such a good friend who shares all the ups and downs of life with me. The Lord has richly blessed me!

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."

Romans 8:28

Saturday, February 04, 2006

I've been tagged...

Here's a new quiz for my faithful readers. Let's see if Molly, Wendy, Melissa, Heather and Dana want to give it a try.

4 Jobs I've had:
Waitress in a diner
Teletype operator
Optometrist's assistant
Elementary School teacher
(And for added measure)
Secretary for the Chamber of Commerce
17 years as a stay-at-home mom and homeschool teacher
Woodcraft painter
Waxcraft painter
Pre-school teacher

4 Places I've lived:

4 movies I like:
Sound of Music (our first date movie)
Lord of the Rings Trilogy

4 TV Shows I enjoy:
Fox News

4 Favorite Foods:
Mom's divinity
Anything with pecans in it
Homemade bread with lots of butter

4 Places I'd Rather Be:
Michigan with my kids
Somewhere on a lake with my fishing pole

First names of 4 old boyfriends:

4 Music Groups I've Seen Live:
Over the Rhine
3 Dog Night (many many moons ago)
Oak Ridge Boys
Four Seasons (also a long time ago)

4 Books I've Read Recently:
Unspoken by Angela Hunt
Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
Justice by Angela Hunt
The Preacher's Daughter by Beverly Lewis

4 Books I'm Getting Ready to Read:
Captivating by John & Stasi Eldredge
End of the Spear by Steve Saint
The Emerging Church by Dan Kimball
Putting Amazing Back into Grace by Michael Horton

Okay gals, let's see what's up with your lives!

Betsy & Molly

Don't you just love this picture! Betsy is growing so fast. I can't wait to see Molly & Myron & Betsy next weekend! We haven't been together since Christmas. She's developing such a's hard to believe she's 5 months already.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Fun and games on E-Bay...

I haven't blogged for awhile...we've been so busy at the library that I'm beat when I get home. Today I read stories to the Home School group. We had 26 kids today! That was a record! They're really sweet kids and I have such fun with them. We sang some songs, read some Valentine's day stories, made Valentine cards and then I surprised them with milk and donut holes. They are having their Valentine's day party nearer to the holiday...but since I won't see them again until the 15th I decided to have a little celebration with them. Since I work by myself until 2:00...I had a lot to do...especially after they left...lots of books to shelve!
When I've had free time in the evenings I've been looking at e-bay and finally got the nerve to bid on some things. I've been wanting some books by Gene Stratton Porter since she lived not too far from here. I won the bid on 3 of them...Freckles, Laddie and Girl of the Limberlost. They're over 100 years old! I didn't have to pay too much for them either! I also bid on a used CD of Over the Rhine called Til We Have Faces. It's one of their first albums and one that I didn't have and couldn't find anywhere. Since Linford Detweiler and his wife, Karin Bergquist are the band's founders...and also Molly's husband's family...that makes it even more special! I really enjoy their music. I'm hoping to catch one of their concerts again when they're in the midwest again.