Friday, January 30, 2009

Bettws and Graffiti

On Thursday, Taige did our assembly at Bettws. He did a great job talking about the law. The Ten Commandments. How we fall short and need a Savior. We can't do enough good things to get to God.

Elso is "taking over" my hair class and teaching graffiti. The current Bettws High School building is being torn down so they're letting us graffiti on some of the walls! Elso asked me to do my best attempt at graffiti with my name to try and get the girls to be excited. This is what I came up with.

But after one class with Elso, THIS is what I had:

He did such a good job teaching the class (granted, it is his profession.) I've never EVER seen Bettws kids behave like that or learn so much in one class. They loved it.

On another note, my faith is being tested (a good thing) in various relationships and circumstances.

A friend drew my attention to the "Morning and Evening" (a great book by Spurgeon) that she loves- on November 12th. Take a look and lets be encouraged!

“The trial of your faith.”

1 Peter 1:7

Faith untried may be true faith, but it is sure to be little faith, and it is likely to remain dwarfish so long as it is without trials. Faith never prospers so well as when all things are against her: tempests are her trainers, and lightnings are her illuminators. When a calm reigns on the sea, spread the sails as you will, the ship moves not to its harbor; for on a slumbering ocean the keel sleeps too. Let the winds rush howling forth, and let the waters lift up themselves, then, though the vessel may rock, and her deck may be washed with waves, and her mast may creak under the pressure of the full and swelling sail, it is then that she makes headway towards her desired haven. No flowers wear so lovely a blue as those which grow at the foot of the frozen glacier; no stars gleam so brightly as those which glisten in the polar sky; no water tastes so sweet as that which springs amid the desert sand; and no faith is so precious as that which lives and triumphs in adversity. Tried faith brings experience. You could not have believed your own weakness had you not been compelled to pass through the rivers; and you would never have known God’s strength had you not been supported amid the water-floods. Faith increases in solidity, assurance, and intensity, the more it is exercised with tribulation. Faith is precious, and its trial is precious too.

Let not this, however, discourage those who are young in faith. You will have trials enough without seeking them: the full portion will be measured out to you in due season. Meanwhile, if you cannot yet claim the result of long experience, thank God for what grace you have; praise him for that degree of holy confidence whereunto you have attained: walk according to that rule, and you shall yet have more and more of the blessing of God, till your faith shall remove mountains and conquer impossibilities.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Psalm 40

"I waited patiently for the LORD he inclined to me and heard my cry. He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock making my steps secure."

I waited. He inclined. (Ps. 37- HE will act.) He heard. He drew me up. He set my feet. He made my steps secure. It is He who initiates-- these are all doing words. He is I wait.

I waited patiently. Trusting. Steadfast. Immovable. Knowing His timing is perfect. This is all I do. He does everything else in these verses.

Not only did He rescue me from the pit, but He SET my feet on a ROCK...and still, then He doesn't leave. He MAKES my steps secure. This is justification and sanctification. I wait, and I trust. He acts.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


Right. THIS is Justin's actual x-ray. Yes. That bone is supposed to be attached. Surgery is scheduled for Monday with a plate and 8 screws - or so I hear. Isn't technology amazing?!

Justin is on new pain meds which make it sounds. =) Please pray for his collar bone and the surgery as well as his heart this next week. Thanks so much! Cheers!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Rees'. Aussie Day. Collar Bone.

In my efforts to be involved in family life at Christchurch, I've asked to spend one Saturday night a month at several homes. I love it so much. A couple weeks ago I was at the Gawedas (Gweedo's), this past weekend I was at the Rees', and this weekend will be the McCanns. I love living life with these people. I miss living with families!

Happy Aussie Day! We went to the guys house for an Austrailian Sausage Sizzle- complete with glorified hotdogs, mashed potatoes, corn on the cob, salad, and of

We had four Austrailian mates celebrating their country's day in the UK. Elso, Nick (a visitor), Patrick (will be helping Paso plant the church in New Castle this summer) and Paso.

And on the home front: Justin severely broke his collar bone in yesterday's hockey game. (No, this is not his actual x-ray.) Looks like surgery is the next step. Apparently, his bone is separated 2 1/2 cm and he's in a lot of pain. Yikes. And ouch.

Well, that's it for now. Hope you had a great Monday!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

LIFE girls glamor shots!

This picture is random. We went to the "surgery" which is the doctor's office to get registered. I loved how the guys kept going up to the counter to "take care of things."

Yesterday morning my LIFE girls came over for lunch, a bible study, makeovers and glamor shots. We had SO much fun! The girls made cupcakes, lunch AND dinner. I was so proud of them.

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The sun was at the perfect height in the sky for shadows...

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Friday, January 23, 2009

Cost. And Joy.

I knew this year would be costly. I was prepared for that.

The cost is great. No longer being a phone call away from a friend. No Starbucks dates asking how someone's soul is. No making meals for someone who's had a hard week. No showing up on someone's doorstep with a gift that will make them laugh. No babysitting so a friend who's moving away can meet with another friend for a few hours. (Wish I was there, Meghann.) Love for people must now take different forms. It costs. It hurts. It's uncomfortable.

But God is so kind.

And the JOY, even now, outweighs the cost. Talking to a teenage girl who just found out her dad isn't her real dad...discussing with a boy that we can't earn even a PART of our salvation...building relationships with lost souls, and having the Holy Spirit birth deep love for them in my heart...yes. Yes, this is worth it. To maybe see added souls around the Throne on That Day, for hearts to be changed and lives saved. God doesn't need me. I know that well. But in His kindness, He lets me watch what He's doing. What He's apart of. Where He's working.

It's not all fun and games. It's costly. It's uncomfortable. It's messy. But it is worth it. Oh, I know its so worth it.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A Welsh Birthday!

Monday afternoon I was invited to Elen Rees' 8th birthday party! The party was "backwards" to what I'm used to...presents were first

Then food, and then the cake goes home with the girls as a party gift! They call jello "jelly" and we had that with ice cream for dessert.

This is Rowanne playing "pass the parcel" with the girls. A "surprise" gift is wrapped and then an added gift goes around it and is wrapped, and so on-- so there were probably like 5 gifts wrapped in 5 different layers. You pass the parcel (package) around like the game hot potato- with music playing. When the music stops, whoever's holding it, unwraps one layer and gets the gift.


This has been a really good week. Seems like its been laid back. Today I totally faked a lesson at Bettws. They've changed my hair class to be in the IT room now-- and its supposed to be the kids using the computers to design nail art and tattoos which I know very little about. Last week and this week I made it up as I went...but Elsing has been assigned to my workshop and will be teaching graffiti beginning next week. Um, YAY!

We had Home Group tonight and I just love it. Such great conversations. I am encouraged and provoked to read Scripture and pray more...because my love for Christ compels me to-- not out of any feeling of "I should." My affection has been stirred afresh once more! Ah, His kindness to us is GREAT!!!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Living as a tourist?

This morning at 8am, Allan and Heather Woods "kidnapped" the Gap girls. They surprised us...

Took us out for coffee,

put us on a train,

And took us to LONDON!!!

Big Ben

Westminster Abbey

Buckingham Palace

Never thought I'd see this in my life. So cool.

Trafalgar Square

Can you believe they took us to see Les Mis?! HIGHLIGHT of my day. Oh my goodness, it was so incredible!

Ivy, this is for you. (She thinks Kat and I look like super models in this picture. Not sure what kinds of super models she sees...?)

My new London hat!

A must-take picture...

And then headed home!

What an amazing day. All I could do today was hum "Great is Thy Faithfulness" as I considered the word "provision." God does not merely "provide" for us. He gives us much more than we ask or imagine. He longs to bestow His love on us in various forms. I am challenged by the way Alan and Heather demonstrate the Gospel. It provokes me.

I've started listening to "Safely Home" by Randy Alcorn on my ipod. (Thinking of you loads, VanLues!) Talk about putting some stuff in perspective, huh? I sat there on the train, listening, with my Bible out on the table- looking at it, praising God that I wasn't afraid of being arrested or killed that it was out in public. I'm so looking forward to being with God's people in the morning...safely.

Oh let us pray for China.