Monthly Archives: February 2008

Prayer Request: Kevin’s Family

God took Kevin home Sunday night.


Please be in prayer for his family. This will be a challenge for his mother, father, grandparents, six siblings (especially his two closest brothers – one a year & a half older & another two years younger). Be in prayer also for the youth group as they work through this time – that they would draw closer to God, not away from Him here. Calling hours are tonight & the funeral is Saturday.

Family Worship vs. Youth Groups

Yesterday, while enjoying grocery shopping alone late in the evening, I got to listen to the first of two broadcasts on Family Life Today featuring Voddie Baucham. I’d heard of him a few times before. Jess has a few great links & I liked what he had to say. His new book is “Family Driven Faith”. So, when I heard he was going to be on FLToday, it piqued my interest. If you get the chance, take a listen to part one & part two here. At these sites, you can either listen or read the transcripts. Here’s a teaser quote for you…

“We see men coming into our environment who have basically had their children stripped from them by the church, and these men come in spiritually impotent, and we look at these men and say, “No, sir, there’s not going to be a youth group for your teenagers. Here’s what we do – we look them in the eye and say, ‘I double-dog dare you to go home and be the pastor of your home.”

I’ll be listening to part two today or tomorrow.

Family Worship vs. Children’s Church

Love this link! I’ve never seen thoughts & reasons for children being in worship service with their family written out & so completely/practically. She has written out what my parents taught me & what we are doing with our children so well, down to the note-taking & check marks next to certain words! How did she do that? Thank you, Noel – John Piper’s wife – for putting it in writing.

New Office Policy

This memo was sent around at Keith’s work recently…


New Office Policy

Dress Code: You are to come to work dressed according to your salary. If we see you wearing Prada shoes & carrying a Gucci bag, we will assume you are doing well financially & therefore do not need a raise. If you dress poorly, you need to learn to manage your money better, so that you can buy nicer clothes, and therefore you do not need a raise. If you dress just right, you are right where you need to be & therefore you do not need a raise.

Sick Days: We will no longer accept a doctor’s statement as proof of sickness. If you are able to go to the doctor, you are able to come to work.

Personal Days: Each employee will receive 104 personal days a year. They are called Saturdays & Sundays.

Bereavement Leave: This is no excuse for missing work. There is nothing you can do for dead friends, relatives, or co-workers. Every effort should be made to have non employees attend the funeral arrangements. In rare cases where employee involvement is necessary, the funeral should be scheduled in the late afternoon. We will be gald to allow you to work through your lunch hour & subsequently leave one hour early.

Bathroom Breaks: Entirely too much time is being spent in the toilet. There is now a strict three minute time limit in the stalls. At the end of three minutes, an alarm will sound, the toilet paper roll will retract, the stall door will open, & a picture will be taken. After your second offense, your picture will be posted on the company bulletin board under the “Chronic Offenders” category. Anyone caught smiling in the picture will be sectioned under the company’s mental health policy.

Lunch Break: Skinny people get 30 minutes for lunch, as they need to eat more, so they can look healthy. Normal sized people get 15 minutes for lunch to get a balanced meal to maintain their average figure. Chubby people get 5 minutes for lunch, because that’s all the time needed to drink a Slim-Fast.

**Thank you for your loyalty to our company. We are here to provide a positive employment experience. Therefore, all questions, comments, concerns, complaints, frustrations, irritations, aggravations, insinuations, allegations, accusations, contemplations, consternation & input should be directed elsewhere.

The Management

Lima Beans & Lent

Many a year has gone by that I have jokingly said I was giving up lima beans for Lent. I hate lime beans & have bought them only once in our married life because Nate informed me he loves them at age ten. When had he ever even had them? Then I remembered how in Korea, we were lucky to find mixed veggies at all on the black market, but they were always the kind containing lima beans. Keith & I would pick them out to give to baby Nate. He really has has always loved them I guess. So I broke down & threw a bag in the freezer for him a few months back. They’re still in there. Good intentions.

Anyway, today a bloggy friend sent me over to Et Tu? for a great read about Lent. I love her mother-in-law’s wise quote. Great words to live by & pass on.

Bringing Up the Next Generation

Yeah! It looks like Dr. Dobson will be finishing up the long awaited sequel “Bringing Up Girls” in 2009. We so appreciated his book on boys; it will be interesting to see what he has for the girls. In his monthly letter, he says when he wrote Boys eight years ago, he was convinced the boy issues in this century were of greater concern than girls. Since researching over the last few years, he can now say that girls today face every bit as much trouble as boys. Parenting in this generation demands home spiritual training. We can’t rely on the schools (even Christian ones), church, youth group, etc. to do it.

Interestingly, an article for pastors this month from the Focus Magazine goes hand in hand…

“We’re in a situation like Israel’s Judges 2:10. ‘After that whole generation had been gathered to their fathers, another generation grew up, who knew neither the Lord, nor what He had done for Israel.’ We may be facing a similar danger today if churches are not able to engage parents in the spiritual training of their children. Consider the following decline among each successive generation, noted by Thom Rainer in his book, The Bridger Generation:

Builder Generation (born 1927-1945) – 65% are evangelical Christians
Boomers (born 1946-1964) – 35% are evangelical Christians
Generation X (born 1965-1976) – 16% are evangelical Christians
Bridgers (born 1977-1994) – 4% estimated to be evangelical Christians

Pastors, this is the future of the church. It’s time to think not only about where your church will be in the next year or five years, but also where it’s going to be in 50 to 100 years. Start assessing how your church can better minister to families and influence their future for Christ. You have to do something different from what you’ve been doing if you want to see young people walk in the purpose & plans of God throughout their entire lives…

Pastors & church leaders have to start training their congregants to pass their faith to the next generation, creating a cycle of faith-building through the strongest relationships in the home… Your church’s role is to build families for Christ’s kingdom, to help marriages thrive and stay strong, to create mentoring relationships within the body, to train the adults so they can train their kids in the faith.

If pastors & churches start seeing their roles as a partner to families for the future faith of the youngest generations, then they can reverse the trend of declining faith in America. – Chris Abeyta, director of Church outreach at Focus on the Family

Amen!! My parents started preaching this years ago. We have got to train parents how to train up their children spiritually. The church has got to see it’s role as shepherding partners with the parents instead of parents thinking their children’s spiritual food will all come from the church. It doesn’t work that way.

Dobson finished his letter asking for prayer as he works to finish this latest book. Join me will you?


PS – April 13, 2010 was the release of this book. For more info, go here.

Science & Fruit – Any Ideas?

Well, I’m getting pumped up about next year’s Club curriculum. I know, if you’re not a teacher at heart, it won’t make any sense. Just like the feeling of satisfaction & anticipation I have when making out weekly lesson plans, or the thrill that comes at the smell of a fresh box of crayons & brand spankin’ new school supplies. We’re an interesting breed, we teachers.

Anyway, next year’s topic will be the Fruit of the Spirit (highlight one each month) & it seems increasingly clear I need to go with a science theme. This year’s theme has had good discussions & lessons (sheep), but I knew the theme would be weak (Australia) because I didn’t have a “uniform” to put on each week to get the kids excited & focused. I mean, I could’ve dressed up like Crocodile Hunter, but I’m not good at pulling that one off. Plus, for awards, we’ve been using the Aussie hats for pins which I knew would be a bit distracting, but good for a change. Plus, that gave them some kind of “uniform”/costume each week. The one thing I need is a “catchphrase” like, for the military theme, we had B.O.O.T. Camp (Biblical Outlook & Outreach Training) & for the ten commandments, we had a cowboy theme with “It’s the Law, Pardner!” This year, we didn’t have that & it makes a big difference. Any ideas on how to hook science & the fruit of the Spirit together? It took us a month, but that cowboy theme came & was a good one. Here’s hoping a science one pops up soon. Nate suggested something to do ith the periodic table or a formula, like HS = L + J + P, etc. Maybe something could be done with that idea.

For the science year, Mom gave me three Bible object lesson science experiment books that look great! There are two guys in our church who I need to get these to & ask if they’d be willing to work up an experiment for us as a “mad scientist” guest each month. Anyone have ideas on names for these guys? When we did the cowboy theme, they were “Slim” & “Shorty”. _____ _______ the Science Guy or Dr. __________?

The kids have been getting SO much better at taking sermon notes each week! I love it. I need to find someone who’d be excited to take that on as a ministry – to jot notes of encouragement to those who took notes each week, & buy nice stickers & comment diligently. I have been increasingly swamped in this area & not getting the notes of encouragement written as consistently as I’d like. Instead of the 8 cent spirals we’ve been using to get us started down this note-taking road, I want to issue each child a “Lab Book” next year – one of those half size three ring binders – so we can just hole punch the notes & stick them in each week with the other Club stuff. Maybe have tabs – I know I loved those colored tabs as a kid! – to organize their notebooks. I need an anachronism for these books, like “Learning About B_______” or something. Ideas?

The teachers are each going to have lab coats to wear in class & the awards I’m thinking will go on canvas book bags where they can put their Bibles & notebooks & verses to keep. Award pins are becoming increasingly easier to come by. Oriental Trading has star pins with ribbons that look cool & there are crosses with jewels on them. I’m looking into those “Croc” pins the kids put on their shoes? Never actually seen one close up. I wonder if those could be used as rewards & stuck on canvas bags? I’m thinking of revamping the award booklet, too for next year & just handing out monthly “lab experiments” or some such thing. Basically do the same award system, but instead of giving them all the award options in a booklet at the beginning of the year, give them one or two they could work on a month as a group. They are getting the idea with the booklets now, but it has taken them half a year to really look at the thing & start working on awards – too overwhelming?

We need ideas on verse packets. The leather wallets we used this year were great! The key rings last year were convenient (the kids always brought them because they were hooked on to their bags) but became horribly tattered by the end of the year. Any ideas on verse packets that tie in with science? It doesn’t have to, but whenever you can, it makes it fun.

For most of you, I realize this is a totally boring post, but I’m throwing it out there because this is what’s on my mind a lot lately & will continue to be until summer when the baby takes center stage. If you have any brilliant ideas that you could toss in to the pot, please do so! I hope to have this all wrapped up & ready to hand to teachers by June.

Any of you doing Group’s VBS this summer might have some great suggestions you come across. Looking forward to seeing the summer’s Power Lab play out.



For those of you with a reader feed, you may have accidentally been subjected to a private post I was jotting this morning. Sorry. Something was going screwy with WordPress. Matt sent one of those “check back in a minute – we’re working” things just as I was pressing to PRIVATELY post it. Never had that happen before. There’s nothing bad or anything in it, just personal memories I was quickly getting down since they came to mind this morning before they left my memory for good. Kindly disregard if you got it. If not & you have no idea what I’m talking about, fah-get about it!

Speaking of feeds, do you guys get every edit made? I tend to edit a LOT. My reader feed doesn’t duplicate every time an edit is made. Does yours?

HOPEful Memories

(Note: This was originally posted as private, but now that almost a year has gone by, I post it for the extended family.)

Dad’s passion for the lost…

“Dancing” down the street in overalls & a wheelbarrow full of water bottles, tracts, & a boombox blaring kid’s songs as we invited kids to the park for our outreach/VBS the last summer. He was 60 years old, but lead the pack! We also had whistles & horn blowers – we were trying to get he kids out.:)

Going door to door in the neighborhood Dad grew up in for hours putting flyers on doors telling about our new church, talking to those we could. That is one of my most precious memories with my dad. He took one side of the street & I took the other. His stubby legs could really move! I had to book to keep up with him! He was six footish, but mostly torso. BUT, he’d also been in THE marching band (tbdbitl) & never got over the high step in his walk. We stopped for a cold pop at the gas station when we were almost through for a quick break. Sweet memories of sitting in that beat up old truck, tired but happy, chatting & sipping together.

Dad wearing that bee costume for visitor day. Dad was very particular about his hair, but he was the only one willing to wear that thing that day. Afterwards, we had pizza & he sat getting all the info (name, address, etc.) while his hair was all crazy & didn’t say a word. I know that sounds stupid, but love him for that! If you know Dad, that was his heart right there shining for all to see!

Making the frog voice for the children at the park. He enjoyed children. He & Mom were taking care of the children for us the Wednesday night before he died. There were what, eleven little ones? The oldest was seven & the rest were four & under! But they did it & had great plans for those little ones each week. That last week, the boys were out with Dad in the garage revving up their three-wheeled trikes & Dad had made a track for them, complete with music & a target rigged up for them to hit every time they got up to the top of the little ramp. Dad also took care of the babies the whole last year at church on Wednesday nights for us. What other pastor do you know that does that? He watched five little babies for two hours every Wednesday night while we had Kids Club & prayer meeting to give us time to bond as couples & the older kids to learn.

Years of Dad & Mom leading the VBS. Dad always wearing the crazy wig & getting out the “binoculars” made of two glass pop bottles duct taped together with google eyes on the end.

Prayer meeting held at incredibly early hours for the lost! When I was in high school, Dad started an early morning prayer campaign to reach our church’s neighborhood. For several weeks we met at the church at 6 am if I remember right. It was Mom, Dad, me, my little brothers, an older couple, and one little family with two baby boys. Then there were the church plant early morning prayer meetings. We had to find a time all could meet without running into schedule problems.

The prayer notebooks, earnestly filled out to pray for individual lost all around us & strategically show God’s love to them. Dad was very purposeful & intentional about life.

Christmas caroling in the neighborhoods together, giving out candy canes & Christmas cards to those who had visited our church or come to one of our outings (steak dinner, free movie tickets, movie night at the church, small groups, park VBS, etc.)

Jane Austen

MAN! Three parts?! I thought they were going to wrap up Pride & Prejudice tonight. Oh, well. Have to wait until next week. Is anyone else enjoying PBS’s Sunday nights as much as I am? I love this montage…