Thursday, November 28, 2013

Still Thankful...

Today is a celebration in the country of my birth. I'll admit that I do find it a bit odd not to be making the big meal and visiting with family over the holidays, but I'm still choosing to be thankful:). We've celebrated both Thanksgivings(Canadian in October) and American in November, but this year is an off year. Scott is working and we have Bible Institute tonight. The kids were satisfied with one celebration, so I settled for calling to talk to my mom and wishing her a Happy Thanksgiving. Here are a list of some of the things I'm thankful for this year:

-My salvation-I don't know where I'd be if it wasn't for the Lord. I'm quite sure I wouldn't be living in Saskatchewan:).

-My wonderful family and the anticipation of a new little one quite soon!

-My church family-They are a wonderful blessing to us!

-The freedom to worship the Lord and Homeschool our children without the threat of persecution.

-A warm house amidst the snow covered surroundings!

-Plenty to eat...

-Gas in our vehicles

-The farm animals that have already taught us a lot of valuable lessons.

-Books to read and the people that invested the time in teaching me to read(primarily my mom:).

-A cancer free diagnosis for my father in law yesterday!!! We're especially thankful for this one!

-A cancer free diagnosis for the Houston's daughter-We've been praying for her:)

-Safe delivery of the Houston's 12th baby! Very excited for them:).

-Safe delivery of a boy for another friend last week.

-Garrison losing his wibbly, wobbly tooth:)

-Indoor plumbing(I really wouldn't enjoy running to the outhouse numerous times each day and night:)

-Chickens that are laying fresh eggs for us each day!

-A friend willing to take me to Saskatoon for my Dr. Appt.

-A sewing machine and the blessing of free scrap fabrics to make things with!

-Lots of warm quilts(we hardly notice that it gets to -15 or so most nights).

-Not having to keep a fire going all winter(although they're nice and cozy sometimes).

-Being able to get around without my knee being so painful now.

-The anticipation of all the family visiting at the end of the month!

-The Joy of Looking Forward To The Return Of My Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ!

And so much more...

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

I know WHO holds the future...

and I 'm thankful! Yesterday I had a "baby" appointment. The Dr. was pleased that my knee wasn't as bad and said that the baby was measuring a week and a half ahead of schedule. The heartbeat sounded great... Then the news I was hoping I wouldn't have to hear. We have to send you to Saskatoon for delivery... Hmmm... 2 hours in an ambulance to do a normal delivery in the city. They're allowed to do scheduled c-sections, but not normal deliveries. There aren't any nursing staff qualified to work in the delivery room. Then he said, "if you were my sister I would just wait as long as possible to come in. If you are dilated to 5 we will have to deliver here". He's done lots of deliveries in S. Africa, but the regulations are different here in Canada. So, after the initial feeling of wanting to panic and try to plan it all out, I realized that I could just leave it with the Lord. If HE wants me to be in Saskatoon for some reason, perhaps to be a witness to someone, then who am I to get upset about it and try to work around His desires. I'm NOT a city girl, but if I ride in an ambulance then that means we're not trying to drive there ourselves while I'm in labor. If God wants me to deliver in Kindersley then He will help me to go in when I'm past 5. I was at 7 with Kiersten when I went in and that was also a time when they were supposed to be sending me to the city. She was born right where she was supposed to be born. I didn't know that there weren't any delivery nurses on duty for that night, but the Lord did and He made a way for me to deliver close to home. Yes, we do have more children than we did back then, but God also knows that and can make sure that people are in place to help as needed. So, it really seems that it will be another area that we grow in as we trust the Lord. There have been different challenges with each pregnancy, delivery, etc, but God has been with us through them all. He's seen us through extreme nausea, unemployment, moving, church planting, bed rest, one overnight hospital stay for fluids with Addie, doctor shortages, blizzard weather for Addie's birth, etc... We serve a wonderful God and trust that He will work all things together for good:).

So, on to the rest of the day! The kids are already mostly finished with school, which is wonderful! The sun is shining! My knee is feeling quite a bit better, although it aches a lot at night. We're nice and warm and there's plenty to eat in the house:).

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, November 25, 2013

My first time...

This was my first year to follow more than one Saskatchewan Roughrider Football Game. Scott usually kept track of how they were doing, but I actually watched almost 1 full game in Alberta:). Last night was The Gray Cup game. We went in for our evening service and the game was just getting started. A couple hours later we were heading home and there was only about 20 minutes left of the game. The Roughriders were leading 31 to 6 and there was a lot of screaming in that stadium. I'm personally glad that I wasn't there since it was a Sunday and also about -20 or colder with the windchill. We let the kids stay up a bit later in order to hear the end of the game and I think Elyssia was the most excited:). Caleb kept asking who won every couple minutes. I'll admit that we were happy the Roughriders won The Gray Cup, but I think most real fans would have been disgusted by our lack of celebration:). We were like, "Yay, it's time for bed now:)." For my American friends and Family reading this-The Gray Cup is the equivalant of the Super Bowl in the States.

I was thinking it over this morning and got to thinking about how so many people say that they're too "reserved" to get excited about the Lord enough to express it. There is just the sitting back and taking it all in at church aspect, but not so much after that. Why are there so many screaming fans at sports events, but so few raising their voices to tell people what the Lord has done for them. Why are we so shy when it comes to the things of the Lord, but not when it comes to talking about the latest sports results? Something for contemplation and prayer. May we get on fire for the Lord and share Him with others before it's too late!

We were truly blessed by the young missionaries at our church yesterday. Their burden for Liberia is strong and we pray that the Lord enables many churches to have the support to give them in order to get them on the field while the harvest is ready. A couple years from now things might not be so open because they'll have the hydro-electric dam working again and with it comes all the modern conveniences and distractions that are found in most other parts of the world too busy for the things of the Lord. Praying for an easy delivery for Jackie and a short deputation...

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Trial and Error

Sewing is something I can do that helps me to feel productive, while staying off my feet. So, it seems I've become a bit of a short order seamstress:). Can you make this mom? I like this material and it can be a bandana, pillow, doll outfit, etc... I'm actually enjoying it, although a lot of it is free hand sewing and not following any set pattern. I really should start taking pictures to post, but haven't thus far. I've been making different things and putting them away for gifts or surprises on a "snowy" day. There are doll clothes(skirts, pajamas), pillow cases, gift bags, headbands, doll sleeping bags and purses. There are pillows that we stuffed with "ugly scraps of material:)", washcloths, hot pads, etc... So, I'm pretty sure that I've gone overboard, but it's all been free so far. A lady in our church gave me a dufflebag full of fabric last year and I really didn't have much time to use it before now. I'd done a couple of small projects, but I've been on a mission to use as much of it as possible. I've found that doll skirts and pajamas are quite easy to make, but I'm a complete failure with the dresses and shirts. Mostly because it's so hard to do the arm and neck hole stuff:(. My mother in law gave me some nice flannel material and I have several pairs of pajamas for the kids almost completed. I just need to get to the store to buy some more elastic. I used up my supply and I'm slowly working through my velcro supply to close the doll skirts and things.

We've not been neglecting school, since it's something I can also help the kids with, while off my feet. They're looking forward to me being back to normal for baking day, but we're postponing that for another week or two. Then we'll start making the Christmas cookies to deliver to the Police and Fire Station. I try to do theirs a bit earlier so that it doesn't get forgotten in the busyness when the company comes. This year our community supper is going to be more of a ministry to shut ins and we're praying that there is a good response. We've got several people that really want to be a blessing with this outreach, but we've found that there's not a lot of willingness,from those that could use it, to call and let us know about the need. I think part of it is that they do have Meals on Wheels available in town, but maybe we'll have more of a response with our early ad in the paper. It should help that it's free:). We're also looking forward to our turn at the Salvation Army table next month. Our favorite year was when Addie was a baby. Lots of people came over just to look at her and ended up giving quite a bit of money. I think they were able to buy over 60 turkeys for families in the area last year, which is quite good for our size of community. We've tried quite a few different outreach ideas in the "almost" five years we've been here and find that people are hesitant to come out for anything, unless it's a holiday or they are invited by a friend. I'm not sure if that's the norm for these days, but we're just praying that the Lord will use us to be a blessing all year round to all those we come in contact with.

I'm quite excited about tomorrow. Number one-I get to go to church! Number 2- We have missionaries to Liberia this weekend! Number 3- I'm just excited to get to go to church again:). The past two weeks have seemed extremely long and I look forward to the preaching and fellowship with other brothers and sisters in Christ. It's a blessing to be able to watch or listen to services online, but it's just not the same thing as being in the House of the Lord.

Have A Blessed Sunday!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Who Are We Following?

Who Are We Following?

Most of us, as Christians, would answer, "Jesus". However, there are generally other people in the ministry that we start looking up to and following the advice of because they seem to "have it together" spiritually. This has been the case a couple of times over the years and sadly, it's ended up with disappointment when "moral failures" or "wonky doctrine" end their ministries. This seems to be the case more and more these days. There are many who have already analyzed these situations and come to different conclusions. Sadly I think that many of us take the attitude that it will never happen to us, but it really makes me stop and think "why not me?" What stands between us and "going astray". These people outwardly seem to love the Lord and desire to serve Him with everything that they have. Is it becoming rather famous or a prominent Christian? Is it being looked up to by so many people? We look at most men in the Bible and see how they messed up in one way or the other. I know that none of us will be free of temptation until we get to Heaven, but wonder if much of it is because we feel the need to have a certain image that we present to other people(lost and saved alike), but let our guards down when we're in private? Do we treat our spouse and children the same at home as we do at church? Do we listen to or watch things that we would be ashamed to have others know about in the privacy of our homes? I've heard this is one of the number one reasons many Christian families lose their children when they're teenagers. Little ones don't seem to pick up on these things so much as older ones looking for a reason to rebel. Are we giving them the excuse that they need?

Most recently the very public fall of a certain man caused Scott and I to question his whole ministry. There are times that God uses a certain person to be an encouragement in our lives, but when they start to take God's place of leadership in our eyes, that's idolatry and He's going to need to remove that from our lives. It's enough to cause me to pray that no one ever starts to idolize Scott as a leader! I know one important and powerful tool that we have to protect us is prayer and we don't utilize it near as often as we should. Begging the Lord on behalf of ourselves, our spouse, our children and those we love that He would protect us from temptation and help us to be REAL CHRISTIANS at home and in the world.

One thing I'm extremely thankful for is that my parents and others in my life had me memorize a lot of Scripture growing up. It has helped to raise the warning flags with spiritual teaching that I might have followed otherwise. Scott reminds me often that there can be truth hidden among a lot of false teaching and we're drawn to it because we hear the truth in it, but after searching the Scriptures the Lord can show us quite quickly where they've tried to deceive. In the case of the one who brought about this line of thinking, we were thankful not to have followed him doctrinally. He, and many of the "men" associated with him are being accused of misconduct in leadership(and other areas) over the past 10 years and only time will tell which is truth and which is created to bring shame to the very things they were trying to promote in families. We've been trying to teach the kids about doing all to the glory of God in all areas of their lives. This is still our goal, whether at home, town or church. We shouldn't let others failure keep us from teaching our kids what the Lord wants them to do or from striving to do it ourselves, with the Lord's help. The temptation is to throw out everything we've heard or bought from this group, but through everything the Lord seems to keep reminding us to be thankful for the areas that we were encouraged in and not let the rest get us side tracked from what He's called us to do. To pray more for pastors and missionaries around us. That they would be protected from giving in to the same temptations. To keep our eyes and our adoration for the only one that truly deserves it-The Lord Jesus Christ.

I don't mind comments or discussion on this, but purposely left out the name of who I was talking about because I don't want this post to turn up on the public feed. There are TONS of articles about this ministry right now and a lot of people just using the comments section to bash those involved. I'm not trying to start trouble with this article. Just trying to write it out and make sense of it in my own mind. I find that writing things out helps me to process it and be able to move on better. I also hope it's an encouragement to be "on guard", lest we also fall into temptation and be sidelined in the Christian race that we're called to run.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Dealing with a wrinkle...

I suppose life wasn't exciting enough with all the birthdays. This week turned out to be the most unexpected of all. It started last Sunday morning when Scott told me his parents were coming that day and would be visiting til Tuesday morning. I always laugh when the brother in laws say there is a lack of communication in the family and I have to say this was a prime example. At first I panicked a little because I didn't have a menu planned, but then just decided to go with the flow and wing it:). Everything did turn out quite well and the kids were super excited to have the Grandparents AND Uncle Preston visiting.

The day that Scott had been preparing for was finally upon us. He is the coordinator for the Remembrance Day Services in our town and it is a BIG job. It takes weeks to prepare, lots of phone calls and lots of extra meetings in town. Thankfully he was able to take off the week before in order to not be overworked like previous years. I think it was still quite exhausting for him, but not quite as stressful. It all came off without too many glitches and the Legion was VERY thankful to have him in charge once again. An unexpected blessing was 5 loaves of bread and 2 boxes of Tim Bits sent home after the visitors were fed:). Our kids made the connection between the 5 loaves and 2 fishes story in the Bible:). There was also a platter of dessert bars, which were enjoyed by all. I'm always amazed at the ways that the Lord sends these blessings unexpectedly. I wasn't really looking forward to baking bread once everyone left and found that I was given a bit more time, due to the generosity of the Legion folks:).

Little did I know that it would be needed even more so in the days ahead than I thought. Wednesday started out as a normal day. Chores, Schoolwork, then time to clean up before supper. It all seemed a bit overwhelming that morning and the kids weren't as cooperative. I had a bit of a "Martha complex" and was running around in a whirlwind of activity. Last items on the schedule=pick up toys off living room floor. Bend down, clean up, stand up=Ouch! What was that! I can't put pressure on my leg and it hurts to walk. Yes, it's very bad timing for an injury, but I'm thinking that this was the Lord's way of telling me to slow down again. I spent a very painful, restless night wondering just what kind of injury I'd done to myself. Thankfully I was able to get a morning appt. with my Dr. when I called on Thursday morning! This is such a blessing after the long dr. shortage that we had for the past couple years. We finally have 5 full time drs., which make it easier to get in on the day that you call. Unfortunately the diagnosis was not what I was hoping for. I was thinking that maybe I'd just popped something out of place and he could pop it back in. Voila!:) Not so easy, I'm afraid. I have tendonitis in my knee, possibly caused by a stretching of the tendon in my ankle when I was a teenager. Who knew that playing tether ball was so dangerous? It is when you have someone jump up at the same time as you and land on your ankle instead of the ground. Anyway... The orders are to stay off my feet as much as possible for at least the next week. The dr. said it takes 1-6 weeks for full healing, depending on how fast my body is at healing. Pregnancy is probably the worst time to have this, but I'm thankful that I wasn't a week or two away from delivery when it happened. Having this pain in my leg and labor pains at the same time would be a lot harder to deal with. Scott and the kids have been trying to help as much as possible. A brace on my knee and some Tylenol have made the times I need to be up a lot more bearable and the pain has definitely subsided from Wednesday. Praising the Lord for each little bit of progress. Trying to eat as healthy as possible to aid the healing and not gain a lot of weight during the last bit of pregnancy. I'm used to be active and don't worry too much about the food. Resting more means not using up as much of the food, so lots more fruit, veggies and protein and less carbs for a little while.

Garrison really enjoyed turning 7. His favorite gifts were Hex bugs from Grandma Prisk(little electronic bugs that go around a track:) and the Lone Ranger Lego set from Uncle Kirk. He was actually super excited about all his gifts, which included a sleeping bag, books and clothes, but these are the ones he mentions the most right now. He's worked his way through several birthday books already and I think will be enjoying a few more to get us through our recent snowstorm. It's really the first one of the season. I think we have at least an inch of snow, with 4-6 more inches expected before tomorrow!

It's also giving Scott extra time for Science and History Lessons and Quizzes. The older two took their first quizzes and did pretty good. They both got an A in History and a B in Science. I have to say that they did really well in Science considering that I couldn't have answered most of the questions on their Science quiz. Scott has been teaching them Physics(gears, fulcrums, loads, cam shafts, etc... I didn't take Physics or Chemistry in school, so most of this is new to me. I'm not around when he's teaching most days, so I was quite surprised by the difficulty of the questions. I don't have any concerns that our kids will have trouble passing any tests that the public schools might give them. So far there aren't any required, but if they were, I'm quite sure the kids will do great:).

Only one more birthday left for our family this year! Adelaide turns 2 on Sunday. Many have commented that she looks different than all the other kids with her super blonde hair and coloring. They didn't see Garrison at this age though and we think she bears a strong resemblance to him. She also resembles one of her Great Grandmas and we look forward to seeing her change in the years ahead. She's got a cute, feisty little personality. She has to have a bit of spunk to get along with all her siblings:). Her vocabulary is improving and we can understand quite a bit more than we did 2 months ago. She's close to 3 feet tall, which means she will definitely be taller than me! If the rule of doubling their height at age 2 is correct for their final height, then she will be close to 6 feet:). We shall see...

On another note... We lost a laying hen yesterday. There was a bit of blood on one of the eggs and we didn't think too much of it. However, the rest of the vicious hens did! They pecked the poor thing to death because of the blood. We'll try to be on our guard from now on and isolate a hen if this happens again. Scott says the hens are anxious to peck anyone that comes in, which is quite surprising. The kids are usually the ones that gather the eggs and I haven't heard any complaints from them. Maybe they just like to attack Scott... They have been laying closer to 6 eggs a day though, so we're thankful to have more for eating and baking.

We're now over the halfway point in November. I'm quite happy about this because it means the time to delivery is that much closer. We still have quite a few Christmas preparations to take care of before all the family arrives next month, which hopefully means the time should go faster. However, the time off my feet will mean it slows down a bit til I'm healed. So... I'll try to behave myself and enjoy watching the snow fall:).