Sunday, December 30, 2007

Fifth and final post today (prolific, eh?):

The first game in the youth Christmas party required each person to eat three saltine crackers and then whistle. This might have been the best game of all (except for Musical Chairs), You should have seen the cracker crumbs flying in all directions! I'm sorry that I didn't get a picture of that. In fact, I think everyone shown here is still in the chewing mode.

Fourth post of the day: One of the games in the youth gathering required each one to chew a piece of frozen bubble gum sufficiently to be able to blow a bubble. When one had blown his bubble, the next person in line began chewing his piece of frozen gum. What you see here are the four best bubbles of the evening.

Third post today.

Back to the youth Christmas gathering on December 14: One of the games we played required that each person wear gloves or mittens, unwrap a Hershey Kiss, and eat it, then pass the gloves on to the next team member. The team that finished first won the game.

Second post today.

Some of the people from the Adult and Young Adult Sunday School classes who came to the Christmas dinner at Spring Mill State Park on December 13 (no, it wasn't a Friday!).

They say that it isn't good to take pictures of people while they eat. I understand that video is even worse! Anyway, if anyone is offended, please forgive me (and pay no attention to the fact that I didn't take a picture of myself with my mouth full).

Steve and Nicole Cassidy were the specially invited speakers/singers for the occasion, and they did a very nice job. It's always good to hear them sing and to hear Nicole's artistry at the keyboard.
First post today. I purchased the following nativity figures on our trip to Honduras early this month.

The Catholics refer to the birth of Christ as a mystery (after all, the Virgin Birth is rather mysterious), so when I was asking about these figures, the lady at the souvenir market told me that this was "el misterio de los gordos," the mystery of the fat people. You'll see why.

First, a few of all the figures together. I need a stable large enough to house them in.
I guess you can see that they're all rather round!

Next, a closeup of the three kings. Note the rich borders on their garments. One of the figures is kneeling.

Here's the shepherd. I think he's my favorite. Note the patch on his clothes. I like his moustache. I think it makes him look Italian. Isn't the sheep cute?

Now for Mary and Joseph. They, too, have patched clothing, for they are poor. Jesus didn't come to the rich and powerful!

And now the baby Jesus.

Friday, December 21, 2007

At the behest of someone from Faith Mission Church (I won't say who, but her initials are CM and she's an RN and plays the piano), I'm posting this interesting little news story.

You need to know at the outset that the principal of Stone City Christian Academy here in Bedford, David Crosley, proclaims himself to be a champion participant in Musical Chairs. We haven't actually seen any evidence that it's so, but he did lay heavy claim to the title.

On December 14 we had a Christmas gathering for the young people of the church and school. Among other things, we played Musical Chairs. Well, most did. I took pictures, and I'm glad that I occupied myself in that manner!

(1) Here he is, hands waving, losing early in the first game. No wonder he wanted a rematch!

(2) In the second game, he barely retained his place in the line-up.

(3) His demise came in the very next round, with only three people left to occupy two chairs. A younger and more agile participant managed to slip into the chair even as our erstwhile champ was sitting down.

(4) He (somewhat) graciously acknowledges his second loss of the night.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Just copied this fun link from Rex2 and Missy McDowell. Check it out!

Test your reaction time.

He says that the automobile driving manual says that the average driver's reaction time is .75 seconds, or 1 car length for every ten mph.

Hopefully I can squeeze out some time to do some more reporting on our Honduras trip. In the meantime, there's a little info and a couple different pictures on our mission website:

Check out both the home page and the prayer page.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

The camp meeting is over, the final service being last night. Though I'm a little hoarse this morning, God touched my throat and I was able to speak twice a day all week with absolutely no problem.

We had a missionary service on Wednesday night, the first time for such a thing in this camp, and the response was very good. Some people from our work in Costa Rica spoke for a few minutes and showed some pictures; then the fellow from Guatemala who is working in Bolivia did the same, and I followed up with a brief challenge. Even before I was finished speaking people started coming to the altar to offer themselves for God's service. The invitation song that we had planned ended up being a special song to close the service.

We had seekers at the altar every night and some evidences of help and victory. Thank the Lord for all that He did through the week.

I'll try to get some pictures up in the next few days. On Sunday we're planning an English service with the missionaries, then returning to San Pedro Sula after lunch to visit a church near the city on Sunday evening, so there's still ministry ahead. We'll appreciate your prayers.

These pictures: Kathy holding Larissa Robberts while her parents, Zack and Sarah, sing a special in an evening service; and yours truly dedicating a baby during the missionary service. Don't you love the way she's looking at me?

Monday, December 03, 2007

Quick update from Honduras.

A photo of Kathy singing in the congregation.

A picture of Steve preaching on the first Sunday morning.

Camp meeting begins on Monday night, Dec. 3. Pray for us! My throat's been kinda bad, but so far it's holding out well. I'm trying to take it easy and pace myself and not get too loud.

Monday, November 26, 2007

The day after Thanksgiving -- with all our children and grandchildren here, we went and had family photos taken in the morning, and then my wife declared an "all girls" (she, Michelle, Melinda, and daughter-in-law Kim) shopping time for the afternoon. No, it wasn't a "black Friday" kind of thing. They went to a new sandwich shop for lunch and then Kathy took them to a couple of new and interesting places she had found.

In the meantime, we guys (me, Mike, and son-in-law Rodney) got lunch for the kids. I thought I'd show you what you probably already know: The way we guys do lunch isn't anything like what our wives would do on a similar occasion. We just put it on the table. They would make it look nice. But, hey, we got the tummies filled!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Here are pictures of the Sunday evening crowd. We climbed to 143 -- and I think there were even more who came in after the preaching started. This is in the auditorium of the education wing of the church where this congregation has begun renting. They can use the sanctuary sometimes and the auditorium sometimes.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Two photos showing the congregation of 142 on Saturday night. They say that the sanctuary will hold at least 500 people, so our crowd looks kinda small in there, but it's still a record for this group! Too bad we can't claim them all as ours, at least right now.

The singer at left is our Guatemalan general superintendent; the man at right a member of the Trenton congregation.
Saturday night in Trenton -- probably our largest attendance for the week, since we expect some people to attend their own churches on Sunday. I counted 142! It's too late at the moment to take time to post pictures, but come back soon and I'll put up one or two.

Friday, November 16, 2007

I'm in Trenton, NJ, through Sunday, accompanying our Guatemalan congregation in special services as they begin using a newly rented facility. This is a group that, in four years or so, has gone through the phases of a dozen or so meeting in an apartment, to about twenty meeting in someone's home, to a rented store front where they grew to the sixties and didn't fit any more, to a rented auditorium in a black Baptist church where we had more than ninety present for the Thursday evening service.

God is still at work! Thank the Lord!

On Wednesday night I did a dedication/inauguration ceremony for them. On Thursday night I was surprised by the visit of three Guatemalans whom I hadn't seen in over 25 years, two of whom were students in the Bible Institute when I was there. I'm anxious to see what else the Lord has for us during the next three days.

Hopefully I can post some pictures here soon. Go to our website and check the EFM blog there for more details.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

P.S. to the zoo story:

Have you ever seen a baboon dentist? Or is he looking at/for something else?

Yesterday Kathy and I met Rodney, Michelle, and their three kids at the Indianapolis Zoo. It was damp, cloudy, and chilly, but at least we didn't have to worry about sunburn or dehydration, and it was nice to be together for an afternoon.

The Zoo does special promotions at various times of the year, so for Halloween they had all sorts of ghosts, skeletons, and monsters throughout the park. At the entrance they had this photo opportunity for making our grandchildren into the monsters that they are NOT. That's hydra-headed Steven at top right, one-eyed Ashlee at left, and purple people eater Kelcee at lower right.

In the Oceans pavilion, where they have lots of fish, penguins, and a Polar bear, they also have a pool where people can pet the dog sharks ("two fingers, touching from dorsal fin to tail," they instruct). Here's a picture of Steven touching one, with Rodney observing and the girls not sure if they want to. I did, and got the lower four inches of my sleeve wet, which kept me feeling chilly the rest of the afternoon.

A little farther along there was an elephant show. We were too late to see most of it, though we did watch the pachyderm create a three-color abstract painting. Actually, it was simple and colorful enough that I'd have been willing to be the winner and take it home! Anyway, when the show was over Rodney took the kids to touch the elephant, and here he is holding Kelcee up so she can learn what it feels like. Kelcee is in the light blue jacket.

There were rides at the zoo, too, and Ashlee opted to ride the carousel. (Steven and Kelcee with with Rodney on the roller "ghoster," which sort of scared them. I think they both wished that they had opted for this ride.) I don't know if Ashlee was riding a shark or a dolphin. Look at the teeth and tell me which.

Finally, as we were getting ready to leave, we saw this hooded skeleton sitting near the exit. We had earlier seen him walking around and greeting people, but now he was resting. Or was he? Did they stuff the costume with something and put it here while the zoo volunteer took a break somewhere? We convinced the kids to get near him to take a picture, but they wouldn't get too close, or would any of them sit in his lap. Note Kelcee's big eyes! They were a bit aprehensive.

And with reason! Suddenly the bony hand reached out and grabbed Steven's sleeve! I wish I had a picture of that moment. Steven was brave, but jerked away and went to stand with his daddy. Kathy (Grandma) said something about the hooded skeleton having a real person inside after all, and he shook his finger at her as if to say, "If your grandson was scared, it's your fault. Shame on you."

When the day was over and we had parted, Kathy and I stopped for a light supper and some hot chocolate. I don't know about her, but I felt a little chilled all day, and the hot drink really helped.