December 5th, 2012
'Tis the season for Christmas decorations, Christmas trees, and craziness in malls around the world. With all the hubbub, it's easy for our focus to stray from what should be central to our Christmas celebration. With that in mind, I wanted to let you know what our family does in the month of December.
A few years ago, someone (and I'm sorry, I'm not sure who it was) gave us a booklet called "The Jesse Tree." Sometime in the last year we seem to have misplaced the book, but there are a lot of resources online that you can use if you want to try out the Jesse Tree for yourself.
Here's what we do. Sometime, weeks, if not months, before Christmas even enters my mind, Nallely will look for a branch we can use for our "tree." On December 1st, the branch is set up. For each of the days leading up to Christmas day, we read specific Bible passages, and place handmade ornaments on the tree that relate to the story. For example, yesterday we read about the Flood, and God's covenant with creation after the flood. So the ornament we placed on the Jesse Tree was a little felt rainbow.
The Bible readings take us from creation to fall to the coming of Christ, His life, His work, and the victory He won. We have two foster boys who are old enough to understand the stories now, so this is a great way to teach them about the Christ whose name is on everybody's lips at this time of year.
Ryan Smith (whose blog is at onechristiandad.wordpress.com) has been posting about what he and his family are doing for family worship during Advent. He's done some great work, and is providing a great resource for families to use at this time of year.
Because Santa isn't the one who deserves all the attention!
"There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse, and a branch from his roots shall bear fruit. And the Spirit of The LORD shall rest upon him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and fear of the LORD" (Isaiah 11:1,2).
July 15th, 2011
A while back, you may recall, I began a weight loss regimen, and a number of you signed up to pledge a certain amount of money per pound that I lose between May 18th and December 1st.
Here's my first update!
So far, I have lost 5 kilograms, which is 11.023 pounds. That means that so far we have raised
(Second Drum Roll)
$314.16 for the Children of Light!
Stay tuned for further updates!
May 23rd, 2011
First of all, there's no "Sunday's Sermon" post for today - the battery on my recorder ran out partway during yesterday's message, so it never got completely recorded.
Now, on to my "Getting Lighter for the Children of Light" Pledges - here's what I've got so far:
J. and J.B. - $5/lb
C.N. - $1/lb for up to 50 lbs, $2 for each painful pound thereafter
E. and C.H. - $2/lb
J.D.H. - $5/lb
H. and G.P. - $1/lb up to 50 lbs, $0.50 for each that follows
T. and A.L. - $5/lb
J.K. - $1/lb
G.V. - $1/lb
T. and N.W. - $2.50/lb
R.S. - $5/lb
Wow! That makes a total of $28.50/lb. lost. Thanks to all of have signed up so far, and for the rest of you, there's still room on the list for you!
August 24th, 2010
Never before has the sound of a steady, Fraser Valley-like rain been as welcome to me as it is this morning. I love rainy days anyway (go figure), but for the past couple of weeks we've been dealing with terrible air quality in Prince George (which is not unusual, but it's never this bad!) due to the large forest fires burning in the region. I have trouble in the summertime at the best of times due to allergies, but the equivalent of sitting around a campfire 24/7 has not been pleasant.
So we're very thankful that the Lord has sent his rains to water the ground and provide relief!
He covers the heavens with clouds; he prepares rain for the earth; he makes grass grow on the hills.
- Psalm 147:8
July 7th, 2010
Summer vacation has begun, and I just realized that I neglected to mention that I wouldn't be posting anything on the blog for a week or two, because we're away on summer vacation.
So ironically, I update my blog to say that I won't be updating my blog for a while!
May 27th, 2010
Yesterday, on his 82nd birthday, my uncle Henk Witteveen was taken out of this life to be with the Lord. Death always comes as a shock, even when it's an elderly person who dies; death is an intruder, not a natural part of life. But Uncle Henk has left behind a difficult life, and in his case, the words of the Apostle Paul in Philippians 1:23 are all the more poignant - for it is far better to depart and to be with Christ.
Uncle Henk lived many years with schizophrenia, a serious and often debilitating mental illness. I only knew him as a "hermit" - he lived on the farm where I grew up, but from the time I was old enough to remember until I was an adult, as far as I know, he never left the farm property. It took a serious fall and some broken bones to get him into the hospital, and he spent the last few years of his life in comfort in an extended care facility.
But even at 82 years old, Uncle Henk was a "covenant child." Although for many years he didn't leave home for any reason, much less to attend church, I have confidence that he is with the Lord, because the Lord is faithful to His promises.
I was never really able to talk with Uncle Henk. I visited him a couple of times in the facility where he was living, but communication on any level was always a challenge When I was young, I was kind of scared of him - he usually had a big white beard, but his personality wasn't as much like Santa as his looks were. And because he spoke a mixture of Dutch and English (and that in a rather unique way), I could never really understand him.
But I look forward to speaking to him when we meet again, because I know his mind, which was so damaged in this life, will be renewed, and I'm certain that he will be experiencing all of the joy that escaped him in this life.
April 7th, 2010
I guess this is why I haven't been blogging as much lately!
Over the past month or so, my hobby time has been filled with building this boat, a "Sanson" Model Tug, produced by a company called Artesania Latina.
Now I just have to find a place to put it!
January 26th, 2010
Does this mean I should be called "Sir Jim"?
But more importantly, do those acorns mean something in particular?
Or even worse, that snake wrapped around the tree?