From Laura, 13 … Lately
I have had an increased desire for improving my bass-playing skills.I started playing when I was 9.Katie mostly played it for the first 2 years
of our family owning it, and then John got me started on it by my request.For the first few years I didn’t use the bow
but just plucked.After all, our family
was a bluegrass band, not an orchestra.Later on, though, I found that I liked the way bowing sounded with hymns
and classical music.I was still just
doing chords though.Then, recently, I began
to have a great interest in actually playing the bass part of
hymns.Using the bow this is a very
difficult endeavor, not to mention I don’t normally sing bass.Therefore, I decided that I must (1) practice
a lot to perfect my bowing skills, and (2) learn to sing the bass part.I can sing soprano, alto, and tenor (an
octave high), meaning I have a general knowledge of how they’re supposed to
sound together -- but with bass, not so much.I’m learning, though, even if it is 1-2 octaves higher. J
From Becca, 15 … Today
I read Stephen’s speech in Acts.He was
being charged with speaking words against Moses, the temple, and the law.In answer, he related the history of Israel
from Abraham to Solomon.He showed how
their fathers had rejected Moses just as his accusers had rejected Jesus.Moses had led the people out of slavery in
Egypt just as Jesus delivered his people out of bondage to sin.Jesus was the one Moses spoke of when he said,
“God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your brothers.”Moses was a sinner, but he was a shadow of
Christ.Jesus is the better Moses, the
one who could save his people once and for all.
From Seth, 19 …Two weeks ago I was laid off from the land surveying
company for which I had been working.The job loss came as an unexpected change, and it meant that I could no
longer spend time with my Mexican coworker friend, but I’m thankful for my time
at the firm and for the experience and relationships I gained while there.Since leaving that company, I’ve worked some
on our house (framing a chimney and sheathing a wall), spent two days as a
temporary rodman for another surveying company (which involved my favorite type
of surveying—watercourse elevation mapping), worked one day for a superb local
remodeler (John), and reviewed calculus (in preparation for this fall).
Here’s an interesting thought
from a book we’ve been reading together, called Christless Christianity.Christian churches are often dismissed as being “full of hypocrites,”
but this charge only makes sense if the message we proclaim centers on our
righteousness and rule-keeping.If our
message is that Christ is the righteous One and that we are the sinners for
whom he died to redeem, then a charge of hypocrisy loses its teeth.We already confess that, of ourselves, we are
not righteous, that Christ alone is our hope.
From Anna, 22 …My time working with Seth, the little boy with special
needs, ended up being a short-term experience, since his mother is no longer
needing outside help.I’m grateful for
the opportunity that I had to be stretched and to learn in so many different
ways.At the very least, I have a more
realistic picture of what it takes to raise a child with special needs
(cerebral palsy in this case), and therefore a far greater appreciation of the
joys and trials experienced by those who are parenting children with these
kinds of limitations.
I was recently asked to help
with the proofreading and formatting for a workbook that our church is putting
together for our membership class, so I’ve been spending a fair bit of time on
that this week.This kind of work suits
me well, so I’m enjoying the project.
From John, Megan,and James … (by Megan) Some big news in
our house this month is that we have a fully functional guest bathroom! Last week John installed the faucet and
sink.Check out our blog for pictures. :)
Next week John will be
Work has been going well. God continues to bring work our way keeping
John busy six days a week.
James is growing and changing
so fast. He is 4 ½ months old. He is such a happy little guy! He is currently working on cutting his first
tooth. It hasn't broken through yet… Just this morning (8/4/12) James rolled over
for the first time! All by himself! He's
only done it once more since then, but soon he'll be rolling all over the
Ray, Katie, Peter, Samuel, and baby-on-the-way … (by Katie) We are getting excited about meeting our new baby soon.
He or she is due on the 12th.My midwife thinks it's likely I will give
birth before then, but I'm trying not to count on it. Peter was early and Samuel was late, so we
have no idea what to expect.
Although not as hot as last summer, it's been plenty hot here, and quite
muggy. We've had to get creative to find
ways to stay active and to be outdoors without melting. We go for walks or to the park in the evening,
and playing in the yard usually includes the wading pool, the sprinkler, or
paintbrushes and buckets of water. We've
also discovered indoor playgrounds at the mall and at a church.
From Judith … We’re all pretty excited here as we wait for another
Wade baby – any day now!
I’m caught up on making/installing
window coverings -- eleven down, six to go.Every new window now has coverings.For the windows in Gerald’s and my bedroom and bathroom, I borrowed some
valances from Anna.(See the blog for
pictures.)She was storing them for
future use.If or when she needs them,
I’ll need to find replacements.
I’ve been going through old
video and audio tapes and records lately which has certainly sent me down
“memory lane”!It has been fun to hear
the children’s songs and old camp songs from my childhood and my children’s
childhoods.Also there are vocal and
instrumental recordings of our children.It’s very dear to me to hear the young voices of my children, both
through singing and speaking, but especially speaking.Recommendation: About once a year record your
children singing and speaking.
About Gerald … It’s
been a boost having Seth’s recent help on the wall/chimney work.Gerald’s focus has been on the chimney,
fireplace, and gas line.Steady and
encouraging progress is being made.Most
of the work we’ve been doing on this house has been familiar, but putting in a
new fireplace and chimney has been completely new territory!I’m reminded of how undaunted Gerald has
always been in the face of the unknown.With enough research and proper tools, he pretty much tackles anything
in his path.
"It is no violation of the will of a prisoner to open the prison door and remove
his chains. It is no violation of the will of a dead man to bring him back to
life. It is no violation of the will of a baby to have it conceived and brought
into the human race. When Jesus stood before the tomb of Lazarus, after he
prayed he loudly said, "Lazarus, come out" (John 11:43). Think about this scene.
Jesus commanded Lazarus to do what he was unable to do. If Lazarus had the
ability to come out of the tomb, he would not have needed Jesus to be there. But
it was as the Word of the Lord was accompanied by the power of the Lord that the
dead man was made alive. And when Lazarus was awakened, he responded and came
"This is exactly what we do in evangelism. We call spiritually dead
people to come to life. We call on those who do not have spiritual ability to
repent and trust Christ. As we preach the gospel, we know that the Word of the
Lord must be accompanied by the power of the Lord or no one will be saved. When
God graciously does this saving work, it is not a vitiation of man's will. It is
a gift of resurrection. Can you imagine Lazarus complaining that Jesus had
vitiated his free will by granting him life?"