Saturday, July 25, 2009

I am blessed

Last winter I took up singing in Leendert Kooy's choir (the OMCA concerts). It was such a blessing to sing praises and have fun times and fellowship with people of all ages. One of the song arrangements we learned was especially an encouragement to me both during that time and still now. It has reminded me time and again to bless the Lord, even when I least feel like it.

I am blessed.

Thru sunshine and rain, even sorrow and pain,
Jesus is my comfort and my guide;
For His love for me and His grace has set me free,
And some day I shall stand by His side!

I am blessed, I am blessed!
Every day that I'm living I am blessed!
When I wake up in the morning till I lay my head to rest,
I am blessed, I am blessed...

I've shoes for my feet, I have plenty to eat,
And a home in heaven by and by.
And through my new birth, brothers sisters here on earth,
We shall share in that home beyond the sky!

.... ..... .....

He gives you more grace when the burdens grow greater,
He sends you more strength when the labours increase;
To added affliction He's adding His mercy;
To multiplied trials He multiplies peace...

His love has no limit, His grace has no measure;
His power has no boundary known unto men.
For out of His infinite riches in Jesus,
He's giving, and giving, and giving again!

And when we've exhausted our store of endurance,
Our strength may have failed ere the day is half done.
When reaching the end of our human resources,
Our Father's full giving is only begun.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

my first bike: Ninja 500

I recently bought something that I had always dreamed of, ever since I was a child... 
a motorcycle! :)

... part of me still can't believe it's actually sitting in the driveway! 

It's such a fun way to get around, and it's already starting to feel quite normal... which is a good thing I suppose. I've had a couple of close calls, but nothing too scary yet.  I've learned a lot about defensive driving, learning to read other drivers and stay out of their way.

Some people would say that I'm crazy to have such a hobby as this... but is it really?  I've always openly admired motorcycles, loved looking at them, dreamt of riding one, and now the day has come... 

and it's great :) 

Visit with Steve & Amy in Woodstock!

Several weeks ago I had the privilege of helping Steve & Amy move their things into their summer internship home in Woodstock. What a huge house for such a small family! :) It was so nice to visit and spend some quality time with them! it's wonderful to have them so close for the summer!

Church Pinic 2009!

I don't have very many pictures of this event, but it sure was fun! Thanks to all the organizers!  you all must have put a lot of work into it to make it a fun day! others have posted pictures, but I didn't have my camera along, too bad...

What a beautiful day it turned out to be, with the sun shining and blue skies!  We played several fun team games with everyone of all ages helping each other... I think our team got last place :) "and the last shall be first" but we didn't get a prize :) 

This year they had their first (annual?) Dessert Queen Contest.... and guess who was the unlikely winner? me! bewildering thought, eh? :) maybe I've inherited some of Mom's talent after all!   Mom was runner up, along with Laura A.

It's such a blessing to be part of the family of God, to be part of the church community, sharing time and fellowship and food and games together, being with one another not just on these fun filled days, but most especially throughout the year.  We need more of that beautiful caring relationship among the Church today. I'm thankful for the gift of my church family, and pray that we may be an example to the other churches, and a light to the world, shining God's precious love, drawing them in.  

pick up your cross

"Jesus invites us to be his disciples. If we choose to accept his loving invitation, we must understand that there are certain conditions to be fulfilled. One of them is a willingness to accept the cross. Is this a once-for-all taking up of one particular burden? I don't think so. It seems to me that my "cross" is each particular occasion when I am given the chance to "die" - that is, to offer up my own will whenever it crosses Christ's. This happens very often. A disagreement with my husband can cause an argument and harsh words, even if the matter is ridiculously small - "When are you going to get that dashboard light fixed in the car?" I have already mentioned the light three times. It may be time to keep my mouth shut, but I don't want to keep my mouth shut. Here, then, is a chance to die. A decision which affects both of us may be a fairly big one, but we find ourselves on two sides of the fence. One of us, then, must "die". It is never easy for me. Shall I make excuses for myself (that's the way I am; it's my personality; it's the way I was raised; I'm tired; I can't hack it; it doesn't turn me on; you don't understand) or shall I pick up this cross?

"Perhaps my illustration seems to trivialize the cross of Christ. His was so unimaginably greater. What cross could I possibly take up which would be so analogous? Just here is the lesson for me: when Jesus took up his cross, Hewas saying yes with all his being to the will of the Father. If I am unwilling to say yes in even a very little thing, how shall I accept a more painful thing? What sort of practice does it take for a disciple to learn to follow the Crucified? A friend hurts us, a plan gooes awry, an effort fails - small things indeed. But then cancer strikes, a daughter marries unwisely, a business folds, a wife abandons her home and family. The call still comes to us: Take up your cross and come with Me. With You, Lord? Yes, with Me. Will You give me strength and show me the way? That was My promise - is it My custom to break promises?"

Elizabeth Elliot, A Lamp for My Feet

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Family Night! :)

The other night we enjoyed a fun night of fellowship with the whole family... even Steven & Amy and Tim & Charlene made it! As is Mom's custom, she spoiled us all with her excellent cooking... and I made the same dessert that I made for our church picnic last weekend: a heavenly chocolate mousse cake... this recipe is amazing! yes, I'm finally learning the ropes in the kitchen, and it's actually quite fun!

Somehow we managed to get all the kids together for a picture, before it started pouring buckets...
We had a fun time playing Bonanza! my first time ever... great game, although I must say, my brain was fried after a long day at work, and it took me the whole game to really get the hang of it! :)

all that hard work paid off, eh Charlene? :)

This kid's a brain, as you can see! :)
(playing cards, and only just over a year old :))

silly poses for the cam... :)