29 June 2008

Sunday Scripture 1

I'm starting a new series . . . Sword of the Spirit Sundays! Each Sunday I plan to post only Scripture.

The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up. Since all these things are to be destroyed in this way, what sort of people ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be destroyed by burning, and the elements will melt with intense heat! But according to His promise we are looking for new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness dwells. Therefore, beloved, since you look for these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, spotless and blameless, and regard the patience of our Lord as salvation; just as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given him, wrote to you, as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction. You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, be on your guard so that you are not carried away by the error of unprincipled men and fall from your own steadfastness, but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.
(2Peter 3:9-18)

28 June 2008

It's Official

We have been officially appointed by the IMB as missionaries to the Italian-Brazilian people of Caxias do Sul, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil and surrounding area. It was an amazing week of appointment. There were 72 total missionaries appointed to various parts of the world. 38 of us were appointed in Richmond, VA and the other 34 were appointed in Oklahoma City.

The most enjoyable part of the week for me were the Emeritus that were there for their recognition service. We ate almost every meal with retired missionaries who served in Brazil, and met many others. Oh the stories we heard!!! Hebrews 12:1-2 was swimming around in my head the entire time we were there.
Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Several shared with us about victories, defeats, cultural differences, hardships we're sure to face and many encouraging words. We were certainly blessed. Another blessing . . . I finally know how to pronounce the word Caxias!!!

An incredible event transpired while we were there. We've known that our timeline would have to change due to the lack of prospective buyers for our house in the current, very challenging economy. God clearly revealed to both Robert and myself that it is His will for us to not delay our timeline, but to be at orientation starting August 4. That is five weeks away!! And assuming all goes well with the very complicated application process for Brazilian visas, we will be in Brazil the middle of October. THAT is exciting!

God's direction is a great relief to us both. I am able to confidently say that I have no anxiety. It is our responsibility to obey God and the details are His. We are doing all we can for the sale of the house (we've lowered the price of our house to the minimum amount we can for payoff and our part of closing, and I've investigated leasing options and management companies).
We know that some houses sell before orientation, some houses sell during orientation, and some do not sell. When God leads, we do count the cost - - but no matter the cost, we obey. When it comes time to begin orientation we will be praising God whether our house is sold or not . . . knowing that we're being obedient to Him and His timing.

Please continue praying for our house to sell. Please pray with us also during this time of saying goodbye to those we love, crating all of our things (this will happen July 21st & 22nd), traveling by car with 4 children to Virginia (a long way from Texas) and our children transitioning to communal living (I guess that one goes for all of us!!!)

Please pray also for Pin Oaks. Robert's last Sunday as pastor there will be July 13. Pray for the search team and members to seek God for His guidance in finding a pastor.

14 June 2008


I've been tagged (this has happened before - a sort of closest book to you page number thing). My friend Jana Dingmore in Georgia tagged me this time to spell out 6 quirks that I have. (Only 6?) Jana, let me add, is a friend from long ago whom I wish we lived closer so we could just hang out sometimes.

Here are the rules:
*Link the person who tagged you.
*Mention the rules in your blog.
*Tell about six unspectacular quirks of yours.
*Tag a new set of six following bloggers by linking them

Six "unspectacular" quirks of mine would be as follows:

1. If I find toilet paper that has been put on the roller backwards, I have to change it. In my house, this never happens. But I have, many times as a guest in someones house, changed their toilet paper so that it rolls correctly over the top, out toward the person retrieving it!!!

2. I'm known around here (especially by my husband) as the "thermostat notzy". I like programmable thermostats that have the ability for four time settings. I possess this innate fear that my children go to bed hot if the thermostat is too high, but if it's kept lower through the night they will wake up cold. So from Katherine on (she's 7 now) the Texas summer-time upstairs thermostat starts at 73 at 8:00 pm, goes to 74 at about 1:30 am and then to 75 at 5:00 a.m. and is there for the day. (It's Texas, so the AC runs all night!) I've got to get over this one before going to Brazil, I know!!!

3. I had many years of little to no female friends. I grew up tomboyish and, for some reason, developed a stereotype of my OWN gender (rumorish, gossipy, critical and too emotional). Barring a few exceptions, I sought out friendships with boys. It seemed to work well for me. I am happy to report that this is a quirk (or really a flaw) I eventually developed out of. My husband is my dearest friend, but I have very dear female friends now and am blessed by this.

4. With the exception of occasional fasting prompted only by the Lord, I do not miss meals. I become very grumpy when I am hungry. When fasting is prompted by Him, He shows His power to me in removing this tendency, something I could never do!!

5. 80's music. It pops into my head SO MUCH! Something I hear, a circumstance that we're in, a person I see, and BOOM - -there it is . . . some song from the 80's. I'm thankful that the Holy Spirit brings Scripture to mind in many situations - - if it were nothing but 80's music, I'd be in trouble!

6. I used to be particular about the folding of linens . . . both towels and sheets. I have refolded the fitted sheet so many times because there is a perfect way to fold it. I learned this working at a Christian camp that maintained both week-long camping cabins and a retreat hotel for weekends. I folded a lot of towels and sheets on the hotel side of things. Of course, now I'm thrilled to have clean laundry folded in any half-tidy manner and put where it belongs!

Doesn't it make one curious about what "spectacular" quirks might be (the kind of quirks prohibited by the above rules)? I have one that I might deem as spectacular well . . . more of a personality flaw - - although it occasionally has a good side to it. And since I am one who likes to stretch the rules, here it is: It is that I'm overly adventurous and very spontaneous. That can be fun . . . but it can also be very crazy for my family. God put me with the perfect husband and children for such a quirk!

Now the hard part . . . coming up with the 6 to tag! I'm just going to list the blogs I read the most:

Laura (a close friend with a private blog, but she maintains a homeschool blog, too)
Jessica (missionaries who have become dear to us - - soon going to Peru)
Cam (missionaries in Brazil - -not too far from our ministry destination & a phenomenal blogger)
Tony (Rambling Prophet 1 & 2 - some of my favorite internet reading)
Pamela (we've never met, but I've been reading her blog for months - - missionaries to Mexico)
Harriette (my dearest Selah V in Oklahoma whom I love, but have never met in person)

Are you brave enough to blog your "unspectacular" quirks for the world to see?