Thursday, May 26, 2011

Happy Trails & Equally Happy Homecoming

For the first time ever, our girls and I embarked on a rather considerable road trip without our menfolk. We missed the fellas terribly, but we managed to have a wonderful 13 day trip - all 3,800 kilometers (roughly 2400 miles) of it!

I'd been quite reticent to take on a trip of that magnitude without Paul and Caleb, but both strongly encouraged us to go to represent our family at two weddings, so we did!

Our first stop was on May 14th in Centerville, Tennessee, where we attended the covenantal marriage of a precious young couple.  We'll share a little bit more about what is meant by the term "covenantal marriage" in a later post - some pretty exciting and thought provoking stuff, so stay tuned! 




Though the weather was cold and rainy that day, the depth of meaning behind the marriage "ceremony", and the wonderfully sweet fellowship with so many dear friends, more than warmed our hearts, as did attending worship with the saints the following morning, another cold and blustery day, but a blessed day in every way. 



While in the area, the Courter family of Linden, Tennessee were so kind to us, showing us much hospitality by allowing us to stay in their camper and take meals with them.  It was so lovely to meet this precious family! 

We also got to spend a good deal of time with friends of ours from Texas, a real treat!  We've wanted to visit with the Seargeant family again since first meeting them three years ago, and the Lord worked out all the details without us even trying to arrange them ourselves, as they, too, stayed at the Courters!  



There were so many other wonderful friends there, many we'd also longed to fellowship with again, having met them previously.  We had such a blessed, blessed time!






Tuesday, May 17th, found us in Cincinnati visiting the Creation Museum with our dear friends, the Redman family of Georgia.  We had such a terrific time with them, being like-minded concerning so very many things. Carrie and the kiddos were also on their own, as Carrie's hubby, Andrew, had to return to Georgia after church on Sunday.  So we women and our children were very privileged to be able to spend time at the museum together. 



 We also got to enjoy a bit of a visit with the Peterson family of Ohio.  Though our time with them at the museum was short, it was wonderful to see Susan again and to meet the newest member of the Peterson family!



If you've never been to the Creation Museum, might I encourage you to make the effort?  We're just so impressed with Ken Ham of Answers In Genesis, and those who laboured with him to create this truly biblical museum, a museum which doesn't shrink from proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ boldly, and countering the evolutionary lies which are taught as fact by so many. 

The bottom line concerning whether or not we believe the biblical account of creation or the evolutionary lie that we emerged from primordial sludge, begins and ends with our foundational worldview. 

 




Everyone, scientists included, view data through a set of biases.  The key is to determine which set of biases has shaped the conclusion reached.  If one presupposes that there is no God, that the Bible is nothing more than a book of fairytales, then that one will conclude that the "evidence" for evolution makes sense.  If, however, one views those same facts through the lens of what the Bible has to say about our beginnings, one will interpret the evidence much differently, and will marvel at all God has wrought in His great and glorious creation.



  


All that to say, we're so impressed by the fact that the museum's creators unashamedly tackled the evolutionary lies, countering them with the truths contained within the Word of God and the supporting scientific facts.  In most instances, they presented the evolutionary "facts" beside the biblical facts, making the argument that God's Word is, ultimately, the only source of absolute truth, that the conclusions reached must line up with the biblical account if one professes to believe the Bible in its entirety.


 
While in Cincinnati, we also visited the Cincinnati Museum Center, three museums in one, actually.  Such a contrast to the Creation Museum, exhibit-wise and clientele-wise. 



Of course, the Museum of Natural History and Science taught everything from an evolutionary standpoint, which wasn't surprising, but it was frustrating.  Frustrating, because all of their theories, and that's what they are - theories - were presented as fact. There are many reputable scientists - even non-Christian scientists - who dispute much of what is taught today, believing things couldn't have happened as they've been presented for the past many years.












Clientele-wise, we were just blown away by the rudeness of many, if not most, of that day's visitors - all school children.  They were loud, obnoxious, pushy, crude, and just generally out of control, with no one, seemingly, caring one whit or making an effort to reign them in, to cause them to act in a civilized manner.  When I turned to one particularly obnoxious group of teenagers to politely ask them to be quiet in an area of the museum where silence was requested on the signage, as it was necessary to appreciate the exhibit, they mocked me outrageously and did so throughout the remainder of our visit whenever our paths crossed.  I did complain to a museum employee, informing him that the buffoo, er... little darlings, were ruining the experience for others, and he told me they were supposed to be chaperoned, to be kept in line, but that clearly wasn't the case.  I'm sure we weren't the only ones affected that day by their barbaric behaviour.  The stark contrast between those rebels and the many lovely families, as well as  a highschool group, at the Creation Museum the day before, testified to the fact that Christianity is, by it's very nature, a civilizing force in any sphere.  


After leaving Cincinnati, we meandered our way up to Niagara Falls in order to attend the wedding of a dear young friend of ours the following Saturday.  



Son, Caleb, got up at 3:00 a.m. to get the milking and barn chores done, in order to hitch a ride (a 7 hour drive) with the groom the day before the wedding, and was able to hook up with us, visit the Falls on Friday afternoon/evening, stay with us overnight, and enjoy the wedding the following day.  We were so glad to see him, we'd all missed him very much! 



In the Pavilion at the Falls (on the Canadian side), we enjoyed watching two expert candy makers in action.  They layered different coloured candy, continously rolling it out into a nice, smooth log.





Once the log had just the right number of colours and layers, one candy maker pulled the end of the heated candy, snapped off a number of lengths, and passed them over to the other candy maker.



This gentleman, kindly explaining the entire process to us, continued to keep the lengths rolling between his hands and the warmed table, ensuring they were all fairly regular in size.  He then used the little spatula you see above to chip individual candies off of each length.  The flavour of this particular batch was mango, and lo and behold ...



... Each individual candy had a little mango on it!  He gave us free samples, which were very tasty, and we bought some as well to share with hubby when we got home.

The following day we attended Adam's and Dana's wedding.  Such a sweet and godly young couple!





After the wedding, Caleb hitched another ride back home with other friends of ours, and we gals moseyed on over to Toronto to visit the Toronto Zoo



Nice zoo, but boy oh boy, what a lot of walking!  We think they should've consulted with us when they laid the place out, as we'd have suggested they work it so that we didn't have to backtrack to leave each area, just walk from one to the other! 







Nevertheless, it was a beautiful day (other than a brief thunder storm!) and we all enjoyed seeing the many varied and exotic animals. 



 Four year old Libby was particularly enamoured of the chipmunk, the dandelions, and the puddles, much as a child prefers the box to the expensive toy it once held!  She kept us all giggling at her enthusiastic excitement over those day-to-day sights, caring less, it would seem, for the "more interesting" exhibits!



We saw many interesting sights along our journey, not the least of which were these two trucks and the cargo they were hauling. 



I must admit, I'd never given much thought to what the bottom half of a fire hydrant looked like!



This rock climbing wall seemed an odd bit of cargo, not something one sees being hauled every day.

When choosing hotels in which to lay our weary heads after those long days of driving, we were careful to avoid places with this kind of advertising.  I don't know about you, but when I see a hotel advertising "Low Rat", I'm not terribly inclined to pull in!  And I've heard of El Paso, but I must admit, I've never heard of El Come.




If our friends, the Hammonds, happen to read this, though we cropped the name of the hotel off, we'll give you one guess as to which chain this one belonged to.  <grin> 

We returned home Tuesday afternoon, ready to tackle the many, many jobs awaiting us.  With the fieldwork barely begun, due to all the rain we've had this spring, and the menfolk going hard at it, Bethany's services were required in the barn for morning and evening milkings, and she also spent yesterday teaching piano to her students.  My house is a wreck, with bits and pieces of luggage strewn here, there, and everywhere, and as I decided it was finally time to begin the winter to summer wardrobe switch, I'm surrounded by even more chaos.  Nevertheless, we're so happy to have been able to enjoy such a lovely time together, and equally happy to be home!  

We praise God for His travelling mercies, for which we sought Him daily, and for keeping our menfolk safe and sound in our absence!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Old Lady's New Hat

There was an old lady who stood rigid and true,
Along came a storm, gusty winds fiercely blew.
Her hat the winds carried aloft in the air,
Shredding it completely, leaving her in despair.

A new hat was purchased to cover her head,
The mill'ners so brave, falling they didn't dread.
Eighty feet above ground, they placed it with care.
The old lady’s head is now no longer bare.









Sunday, May 8, 2011

May His Truth Endure To All Generations ...

On this Mother's Day, 2011, surely I am amongst the most blessed of mothers. God has been so good to me, filling my heart and home with our six wonderful and cherished children.

Glory to His Name!!

May His truth endure to all generations, to our children, to their children, to their children's children...



Psalm 100:1-5

"Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands. Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing. Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations."

Two Temples



Two Temples

A Builder builded a temple,
He wrought it with grace and skill;
Pillars and groins and arches
All fashioned to work his will.
Men said, as they saw its beauty,
“It shall never know decay;
Great is thy skill, O Builder!
Thy fame shall endure for aye.”

A Mother builded a temple
With loving and infinite care,
Planning each arch with patience,
Laying each stone with prayer.
None praised her unceasing efforts,
None knew of her wondrous plan,
For the temple the Mother builded
Was unseen by the eyes of man.

Gone is the builder’s temple,
Crumpled into the dust;
Low lies each stately pillar,
Food for consuming rust,
But the temple the Mother builded
Will last while ages roll,
For that beautiful unseen temple
Was a child’s immortal soul.

~ Hattie Vose Hall ~




Dear Christian Mothers,

The work you do, though seldom praised, is work of great value, arguably the greatest work of all.  You are shaping your children to serve as Christ's Ambassadors, representatives of the Kingdom of Almighty God.  

Do not listen to the liar who whispers in your ear, telling you that you could be doing something more worthwhile, more praiseworthy, more noble.  Nothing is more so than your valiant efforts to raise up godly warriors and servants for the cause of Christ!

Happy, Happy Mother's Day to all who faithfully build temples not of stone and mortar, but temples which glorify the Lord, Jesus Christ!    

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Need Is Still Great!


The Lee Family

Mr. Lee, father of 13, was killed in last week's tornadoes in Alabama and his family lost everything.


The Crawford Family

The Crawford's home was completely destroyed.  Mr. Crawford is a self-employed contractor, so until he's able to get his family settled and obtain the tools he needs for his trade, he won't be able to meet the pressing needs of his family. 


Dear Friends,

We know what it's like to get a request for assistance, mean to do what we can, then get distracted by day-to-day life and totally forget to actually do something.  Perhaps that happens to you sometimes too? 

Might we remind you of the great need of the Lee, Crawford, and Boyd families? 

You'll recall that Mr. Tom Lee, faithful husband and papa to 13 beloved children, died in last week's devastating tornadoes in Alabama.  This dear family is now without their earthly protector and provider.  And not only that, they have no home.  No belongings.  They are still in need of our help.  If you haven't already, would you mind clicking on the link below and make a donation - every single cent of which will go directly to them.  No middle man or fees, every single penny, right into the hands of this precious family! 

And the dear Crawford family, they've lost everything too.  God preserved them all alive, PRAISE HIS NAME!, but their home was utterly and completely destroyed.  Mr. Crawford is self-employed as a contractor and isn't able to work until he gets things settled somewhat for his family, his lovely wife, Kelly, and their 9 children, the youngest just a few weeks old.  These dear folk could sure use any help you can provide them with.

Then there's the Boyd family, they live on the same street as the Lee's and the Crawfords.  While their home is still standing, it was badly damaged and is in great need of repair.  Perhaps you could spare a few dollars to help them out?

All of these families are faithful Christians.  They need our help. 

And please feel free to pass the link to this blogpost along.  Perhaps you have friends and relatives who might be able to help them out as well.

Here's an easy way to contribute to each family.  You can designate exactly how much to give to each family and your request will be honoured.  Also, you'll be able to click on the video interviews found there and learn firsthand what happened and understand why the need is so great.

Thank you so much!