Monday, December 31, 2007

Christmas with Frank and Chris

What a nice Christmas we had! Evan and Lori came in on the 20th with Riley and Kirsten, so we enjoyed having them with us. Of course, we live near Laura and Brent and their three sons, and we also have Frank's mother close by. So all of us had a good time together. On Friday morning we took our four youngest grandkids to the mall to have their picture taken with Santa. While we were waiting, I took this picture.

From left: Lance, 5 months; Brock, 5 years; Riley, 2 years in February; Kirsten, 3 years.

One of the highlights of the weekend was when Frank dedicated little Lance to the Lord on Sunday morning. Almost 20 relatives on both sides of the family were in the church for this special time. How fortunate our grandchildren are to have loving, Christian families who love them and want God's best for them! Another picture here is of Frank's mom with Laura and Lance. I love this picture!

One happy bit of news from our family is that Evan and Lori are expecting another baby in early July. Our motto is: The more the merrier!

Evan and Lori and their girls.

Laura and Brent and the boys.

As you can tell, we love our family. We praise the Lord that all of them love Him and are serving Him in the places where He has put them. Hope you enjoy our pictures.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Preparation for Ukraine!!!!

Most of you have seen on the news about the ice storm in Oklahoma. We had just gotten home last Saturday from Missionary Forum which is a retreat held every year in Indiana for WGM missionaries in the U.S. for Home Ministry Assignment (formerly known as furlough!) In Indiana we spent three days listening to good preachers (one a professional comedian), renewing friendships with other missionaries whom we hadn't seen in a long time, and generally having a good time. We woke up on Wednesday morning to a temperature of 1 degree above zero, wind chill -8! Actually, our temperatures these past two weeks have been lower than they are in Berdyansk, Ukraine. There was lots of snow and cold winds, which, by the way, did not chill the warmth of fellowship and spiritual renewal.

We left Indiana on Friday, Dec. 7, and got home to Yukon, Oklahoma, late that night. We started out in snow and ended in very cool rainy weather. Saturday night our storms started here. LOTS of ice. Church was cancelled on Sunday, so we stayed home and enjoyed a very quiet day with good books and TV. On Tuesday morning our electricity went off, so we headed over to our daughter's home which had already lost its power the day before. But her husband had a generator, so we were warm and able to have some light. Laura cooked on their propane camping stove. Our electricity came back on Wednesday late afternoon, but Laura and her family still do not have electricity today, which is Saturday, the 15th. They are with us in our home now, to have a change from their electricity-deprived house. We are praying that their electricity will return today sometime. Today it is snowing, but the temperatures are expected to rise tomorrow and melt it for the most part.

So, what has this taught us? Well, we did feel that God was just giving us a little preparation for winters in Ukraine! I wonder if He's chuckling at us now with all of our moans and groans. We have learnt about how He takes care of us during difficult environmental conditions. Of course, we had already learned this in India, but the temperatures were considerably different and there was no snow or ice. We know that He helped us get home before the major storm hit and He gave us fairly good traveling conditions for most of the day. He reminds us of our loving family and how we care about each other and help each other when necessary.