Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The Christian Pumpkin

Last Sunday when we went to the Reservation for our Porcupine Mission, we took with us a bunch of pumpkins. These were donated by some good friends of ours. We had a total of 32 pumpkins.
I carved the largest pumpkin in front of the class for as the lesson. I got this idea from my youngest daughter who every year in her first grade class carves a Christian Jackolantern using the pumpkin prayer.

The Pumpkin Prayer
Dear God,As I carve my pumpkin help me say this prayer:
Open my mind so I can learn about You;(Cut the top of the pumpkin)
Take away all my sin and forgive me for the wrong things I do.(Clean out the inside)
Open my eyes so Your love I will see;(Cut the eyes out in star shapes) The star also reminds us about the star that shown the Wise Men the way to Baby Jesus that first Christmas.

I'm so sorry for turning up my nose to all you've given me.(Cut a nose in the shape of a cross)
The cross shows us what Jesus did for us, died on cross in payment for the sins of the whole world.
Open my ears so your word I will hear.(Cut the ears shaped like the Bible) I only drew the Bible ears.
Open my mouth so I can tell others You're near(cut the mouth in the shape of a fish) this is the sign for Christian.
Let Your light shine in all I say and do! Amen.(Place a candle inside and light it)

The children and the adults really enjoyed this object lesson and just maybe now, when they think of Halloween and all the scary spooky things happening around this time of year they will be reminded of the free gift of Jesus, our Light and Salvation and that we all can let our Light so shine before men, that they might see our good works and glorify our Father in Heaven. Mathew 5:16

It was amazing that when we started counting and handing out pumpkins that there were exactly enough and wouldn't have been had not two older siblings had volunteered to share one larger pumpkin. The children only got to wipe off the dirt and draw a face on their pumpkins but they were encouraged to have a older family member help them at home and then tell the lesson about the pumpkin prayer.

When I looked in my craft bag, I found a free gift, absolutely free, I excitedly opened the gift and it was a candle in a glass holder that had a Bible verse on, The Lord is My Light and Salvation Psalm 27
Salvation is a free gift, there is nothing we can or have to do to receive this free gift, It was fully purchased by Gods Son, Jesus.
For it is by Grace you have been saved, through faith and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God not by works, so that no one can boast. Ephesians 2:8

Monday, October 29, 2007


Two babies born 24 years
to the day apart.

Today is my oldest daughter and also my oldest granddaughters birthday. What a special day this is. I can excitedly remember when my beautiful daughter was born. It is so wonderful being a mother. It was 10 years ago today when My precious granddaughter was born. I was bubbling over with joy. What a blessing these two have been to me. Its impossible to explain the love that I have for both of them! You can tell the camera's were not as good back then and taking a picture of a picture that is already not the best quality so I can put it on this blog makes it even worse. You can see how sweet she looked in her baptism gown. This is the same gown that My granddaughter wore for her baptism 24 years later. I sewed this gown using hand crocheted lace my grandmother had made special for my baby's baptismal gown. We found it in a old card box, labeled with my name on it, after she had left for heaven to spend eternity with Jesus. This was before I was even married. I am so glad she thought to crochet the beautiful lace in my senior year of High School.

This picture of me and my husband with our baby daughter on her baptism is quite blurry. You can still get an idea of what we looked like.
We have all three changed a lot since that time.
Time goes by so quickly. I have very fond memories of the time I spent with my baby as she grew to be a wonderful woman.
Below are two pictures of my daughter in her senior year of high school.

This is the first page from my granddaughters memory book. I will never forget the first time I saw her. It was a feeling of love I will cherish forever!

Here at her baptism, she cried ed a lot that morning before church started, so this is a peaceful picture when she finally fell asleep.
When I look at the picture I always remember hearing my lovely daughter saying to my granddaughter, "I AM YOUR MOMMY, I LOVE YOU VERY MUCH" It was such a special joy watching our daughter be a new mommy.

This is My proud son-in-law and my daughter with their baby girl. They were both so tired,
We all remember those first days as a new parent! SLEEPLESS!

This both my daughter and granddaughter a couple years ago.
I hope they are both having a special birthday today and know how very much I love them and how often I think about them and remember them in my prayers.


Thursday, October 25, 2007


This is the old church where we first started having our mission Sunday school a little over 6 years ago. Notice all the old wrecked cars down the hill in back of the church? The children used to love to play on those, jumping from one to the other. Many got hurt with glass cuts and bruises and it seemed we were always out there convincing them to stay at the church' especially on nice days. Since this is on a hill, children used to slide down the hill from which I was standing on when I took this photo. They would use cardboard box's, hoods from the cars and some even had plastic sleds.
This church had very little sitting space, well, around the edge of the inside of the church is orange carpet and that's where everyone sits. That is the way all the Native American services,(meetings like they call them) are held. Notice the tile cross in the floor? at the top of the cross is a fire pit used for their coals and cedar burning and smudging. The only heat in this shell of a building is the old barrel wood stove that you can see at the bottom right.
Since this church was situated quite a ways off the main road, there was a lot of mud around and the floor was normally very dirty and dust covered. This picture was taken after we had spent hours sweeping, washing and waxing this floor in preparation for the VBS week.

Here is the church all decorated and ready for VBS!

This is our new church building where we moved to two years ago this month. It needs paint and some repair and this will hopefully all be complete by summer of 2008.

This is the inside! Notice the difference? It has a alter, cross and flags, pew's and even a organ and Baptismal font. We used portable gas heaters for the first year but for the last year one of our mission team workers is a electrician and volunteered his time and materiel's to install electric baseboard heat. We have those on a timer so they turn on early morning on the Sundays that we have church and Sunday school. Much easier then taking fire wood, paper and matches, getting there real early to start the wood stove to heat up the cold church building

This is a old Episcopal church that hadn't been used for 12 years. It cleaned up real nice!
This picture was taken on Palm Sunday 2006.

This is the alter at our Easter celebration in 2007! The candles are nice and the children love learning and taking turns being acolyte's.
So now you see the difference in the buildings. This new site also has the church hall for Sunday school and our meals. It is now furnished with tables and chairs, a fridge, stove and even a microwave for when we have popcorn during the Bible DVDs from NEST.
They are very nicely done animated bible lessons. We usually show one on special occasions or every 4Th time we are there.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

The Rainbow

I love rainbows and it is not too often that I get to see one and especially when I have my camera in hand. Many times the rainbow is just a part of one or at least from where I am, can only see a part of it.

My Husband and I, along with a small group of people, go to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation to do mission work. We have been doing this two Sundays per month for 6 years now. Throughout this time and as we travel the 75 miles to and from the reservation, we have been blessed to see a lot of Gods beautiful creation. I will post more pictures of scenery and sun sets another time, but for now, I want to concentrate on the rainbow.
A couple weeks ago just as we were getting ready to have our closing prayer and leave for home, it started to rain, minutes later a gorgeous full rainbow appeared.
It was so special that it was behind our new church. OK, its actually a old church building, and had sat empty, not in use for 12 years, but it is new to us and a much nicer church atmosphere then our old church building. I will have to do another blog soon and show the insides of both church buildings and then you will understand what I'm talking about.

The white cross shows up so nice with the dark sky.

It always amazes me that the top side of the rainbow, the sky is so dark and the bottom part is a lighter sky.
When I think of the very first rainbow ever from the Bible after the great flood, I can't help but feel the joy of Gods blessing and promise to be with us as we spread His word through our Mission work. Sometimes we get discouraged and tired but then I think of the verses in Genesis 9. God said, This is a sign of the covenant. I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come; I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth.
verse 16. Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.
The Rainbow has always been a sign to me and many other Christians that God will always keep His promise. I know He has blessed our mission and will always be with us giving us strength , wisdom, faith and courage through His word. He promises eternal life with Christ for all who believe and are baptised and that promise is also for Native American people.

This picture was taken 4 years ago when we were still at the old Church building. This also was very special to all who were there and viewed this wonder that only God can create.

I find it amazing that these pictures were taken 4 years apart at close to the same location but if I would put this picture next to the last picture from a couple weeks ago it would make a full rainbow.

This rainbow from 4 years ago, on that hot summer day, was also a full rainbow and gave me the opportunity to review the lesson of Noah and the flood and the promise rainbow!

This was taken from the door of the church building. One of our Native friends had ran up the hill and was looking at the rainbow. I hope you have gotten to witness the beauty of Gods promise, (rainbow).

Monday, October 15, 2007

Who is this precious Baby?

This precious 6 week old baby is a very dear friend who I have known for almost her whole life.
She is very sweet, smart and a great person in general.

Look at that cute smile! You just can't help but love her! This 2 month old is having a birthday today. It is unbelievable how fast time passes by.
At 10 months old she was already walking and on her way. We knew then that she would be someone very special. She is now a Pediatrician and sees many children daily. I know she takes her job very seriously and is a blessing to many people including me. She is almost like a third daughter to me and my husband and a sister to my daughters.

Isn't she beautiful? About 2 years ago she found the Man of her dreams and was married.
What a fun time we all had at their special day.

It looks like a picture you would see in a BRIDES magazine, right? What a lovely couple!

This is their family at this time. I am anxious to see them in a few months.
At least you know I was thinking about you today!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

God's beautiful artwork!

The hedge that is all along the South side of our yard is at its peek fall color stage right now. As you can tell it is several different shades of orange, yellow, reds and greens.
It won't be long and all those colored hedge leaves will be on the ground.

My second cousin and I had the opportunity to drive south, up in the hills for a 2 hour walk in the beauty of Gods art work. I love the colors and thought I would share a few pictures with you just in case you haven't had the opportunity to get out amongst them this season. We parked the car at this off the road shaded spot and we were off.

It was a perfect day at 70 degrees with a light breeze. I love the sound of the wind blowing through the leaves and pine trees.

I took our 10 year old dog along for the walk. He really gets excited and found several little ground squirrels to chase and sniff. Here he is coming back from a long chase. He was getting tired from all the running. More like it, he wasn't ready to come back when I called for him.

We saw some deer and wild turkey too. I didn't get a picture of them though. We could hear the wild turkey from time to time on our walk.

The trees here are mostly golden, not a lot of reds. but still pretty.

This picture is of a redder bush. We could hear the 1880 train that travels through the forest from Hill City to Key Stone. It sounds so neet, this time of year is the perfect time to ride the train with the cool weather and pretty fall leaves.

This is my fall decoration in front of our house. We have this old wheel barrow so I just use it to display some of Gods beautiful fall colors.

Remember when I told you my flowers on the South side weren't doing so good because it was too hot? Well I thought I would show you how much these wave petunia's love the cool fall weather. There are so many blossoms on this plant I can't even count them all. It makes it hard to think of the inevitable frost not too far away. I am so glad I thought to cover a lot of the flowers and garden about 1 month ago. It sure extended the lives of these plants.

This is the cascade Geranium that blooms all summer long and is more beautiful then ever right now. I hope you have taken some time this fall to enjoy Gods nature and beautiful art work.
These pictures just can't show the full beauty. He tell us in His word, the Bible,
BE STILL, AND KNOW THAT I AM GOD! What better way to do this is be about in His creation and ever changing seasons.