Wednesday, January 24, 2007

First Day of School

Josiah and Caleb finally went back to school. They have been out since December 6th. That is an extremely long Christmas/Summer break. Yes, it is summer here and it is hot. It was 88 degrees in our bedroom last night – at 8:30 pm.

Caleb started grade 1 and Josiah is in grade 4. They both enjoyed their first day. Caleb was disappointed that he didn’t have any homework on the first day. I asked Josiah how his first day of school was and he replied, “Perfect!” They usually promote the classes together with the same people in the same classes – they didn’t this year. I thought he would be disappointed that he didn’t get in the same class with his best friend, but he seemed to be ok with it. We are home schooling Andy and he started a couple of weeks ago. We want to finish up with him around the first of June so that we can concentrate on packing and doing the stuff we need to finish before we leave on June 21.

And of course, the other pictures are of Bethany and Melody from Sunday - can't leave them out!!!

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Just another Sunday in Mmabatho.

I had the opportunity to preach at 2 different locations today. My first preaching station was just down the road from our house at Calvary Baptist Church.

I preached from Luke chapter 9 where Jesus talks about commitment and being his disciple. This is the church where we attend if I am not preaching anywhere on Sunday. It is also walking distant for Jody and the kids if I am away.

My second opportunity was right after the first. I preached the 11:00 service at Calvary and then I went to Christ the Lord Ministries church and preached from Acts chapter 2. I showed them in the last seven verses of the chapter five characteristics of a growing church. Their preacher, Million Mardenzegwa, has become a great friend. I see him at least once a week, if not more. He asked me on Thursday if I wanted to preach. I told him that I was already at Calvary. He said it didn’t matter – they would wait for me. I got there about 12:20 and they sang for about another 10 minutes. I got into the pulpit and finished by 1:30. Andy was with me and he took the pictures today. When I got home I was able to watch the Colts-Ravens game that was played yesterday afternoon. It was almost like a normal Sunday – Sunday school, preaching, lunch, watch a football game, take a nap – unfortunately I missed out on the nap. Oh well, God is good!!!

The rest of the pictures are just extras – good extras.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Just Some Pictures

January Update

Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. What an incredible blessing it is to serve Him. I have no idea why He chose me, but I am so glad that He did.

We rang in the New Year in Johannesburg this year at our annual Prayer Retreat. At 10:00 pm, it was midnight in Nairobi, Kenya, so we counted down and rang in the New Year 2 hours early. We said good night and went to our rooms and went to bed – that’s what we did – when you have 5 kids, things tend to change a little bit. When we awoke in the morning, we turned the TV on to CNN International and they were just counting down to the New Year in the Central Time Zone. We had eaten breakfast and were packing when the New Year came to those of you on the West Coast.

We had a good Christmas. The boys awoke at about 5:00 am. We got up and got everything ready. We got the boys bicycles for Christmas and they could smell the rubber tires throughout the house. They enjoyed Christmas. Bethany awoke at about 5:30. She had a fun time opening her presents. Every time we say something about Christmas, she smiles and says ‘presents’ and wants to open something. We had some good friends come from Francistown, Botswana, that evening and spend a couple of days with us before we left for Prayer Retreat.

We have about 5 and a half months before we head Stateside for about 6 months. In fact, a year from today we return from the States to be right back here. This next year is going to fly by. Some of you have already contacted me about speaking in your church, I would encourage you to get in contact with me as soon as possible if you would like for us to come and visit you and your church in some capacity. With all our other activities, our calendar will fill up quickly.

I have had several good meetings with some national pastors concerning our time left here before we leave. Our work in Extension 39 looks very promising. Tshwaro, the young pastor, has moved into his house in Ex 39. We now have a home to work from in that new area. I also talked with Ben Poo and he has an old man in his church with pastoral experience that is on pension, but he knows that God is not finished with him. He is interested with the work in Ex 39. I would ask you to pray for this situation – that we would be sensitive to God’s moving and His direction. I want to see what God is doing and join Him in His work.

Jody was able to distribute some Christmas stockings out in Moshawane village. After being absent from the village for the last 3 months, she was welcomed back with open arms. We took the boys with us and they were just as excited as handing the stockings out as the kids and ladies were in receiving them. Pray for Jody as she tries to discern the Lord direction in that village. She doesn’t know whether to continue there or move to a different area.

Josiah and Caleb start school on the 23rd of January – still 2 ½ weeks away. We went shopping for school supplies and uniforms. Last year, Caleb didn’t have to wear a uniform to school, but this year he does. He wasn’t too excited about his gray socks that go to his knees. Pictures will follow in about 3 weeks. Andy will start his schooling next Monday. We have to work hard with him to finish 6th grade so that he will be able to enter 7th grade this coming September in Longview, Texas. I have been teaching him Math, Science and History and Jody has the rest of the subjects. We try to get started around 7:40 and I finish at about 9:00. He then has an hour to finish any class/homework from me – takes a break from 10 to 10:30 and then finishes the day with Jody. I am free then from about 9:00 in the morning to do my work and in the evenings and things happen.

Bethany is talking up a storm. She is like a tape recorder – she is repeating everything the boys are saying – good and bad. So this is not always good. We had to correct her from saying ‘tupid-head’. Melody is looking around and is now awake 5 hours a say instead of 2!

Thanks for remembering us in your prayers. We cannot and would not want to do this without your prayer support and prayer cover. I have realized that there is some incredible spiritual warfare going on over here that I have not seen before. We look forward to seeing you this summer and fall.