Thursday, August 30, 2012

up north

While we were up north my parents celebrated their 35th wedding anniversary. We are all so thankful for their support, encouragement, grace, and their godly examples. We have been so blessed to have parents that speak and live according to God's Word.

The boat rides are always a big hit. This year we bought kid skis that helped big time. They were attached together so that the child couldn't do the splits and a person in the boat held onto the rope instead of tying the rope to the boat. This way if the child fell down the person in the boat would let go of the rope so that the child wouldn't drag through the water, forgetting to let go. This could of gone a long ways for me if they had this invention when I was young. I had many traumatizing and embarrassing experiences trying to get up on skis...

As much as these four two-year-old cousins have fun together, you have to keep on top of them (or maybe it is just me having to keep on top of Tyler). They quickly want the toy that the other one is playing with and they will fight for it!

Liam and Luke. Luke is Dave and Renee's second son and he is a sweet, sweet baby.

Dave and Renee

Candy River. We have visited candy river ever since Nate was young and it is the most amazing river. You fish and you catch candy! This requires two adults - one to distract and one to quickly stick the candy at the end of the fishing line. This year we ran into two snags. When I went shopping for the candy I had Nate with me. I said to him, "Nate you are almost nine and you will probably figure out the truth. Dad and I put the candy in the river." Nate sucked in a deep breath and almost staggered. He could hardly talk he was so astounded that this magical river was not real. When we got into the van, Nate told me in a deep and dramatic voice that this was the saddest day of his life. Poor guy.
 The second snag.  When we got out to the river Adam singled for me to had over the candy. I took a deep breath. I didn't bring the candy, I thought that he did... We burst out laughing and tried to figure out what to do. We told the kids that the weather looked bad (there were very dark clouds) and that we would visit the river the next day. We arrived back at the dock just as it began to pour.

We had a cottage that had the biggest window ever. When you first walk into the cottage it takes your breath away. It almost felt like we were living in an aquarium.


All of these boys and this one girl are from two families. They have a great time together and it is neat to watch them play. Tyler refused to sit down with them and decided to stand there and cry.

And now it is back to reality and almost time to get back to routine. Gulp.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

young peoples camp

Attending young people's camp as a teenager was always a highlight of the year, but going as a camp counselor is even better! It is wonderful to be part of this energetic group of young peoples, to hear of their struggles, to encourage them, and to have the opportunity to pray with them.

Kim and Pastor Hans

This year we were spoiled by Jeff & Sandy. There was a constant supply of cold refreshing water, and delicious snacks. 

On Saturday morning, the heat was oppressive. As we played sports, the sweat was pouring down people's faces, their t-shirts were soaked, and we went through many water bottles.

During ultimate Frisbee, Ryan managed to admire the nature around him.

He invited others to share the wonders that he had found.

I can't say too much because I didn't do the sport thing either. Actually I hardly cheered - it was just that hot.

Toilet brush hockey was the one game that our team won!

The counselors had a run-in with each other with Ineke taking a bite out of Bill's head. She wanted to shave part of his head so she could clean it better but Bill adamantly refused saying that each hair was precious to him.

Although we had much fun, and moments of hysterical laughter, there was time for reading, praying, encouraging, listening to God's word, and singing.
Our speaker was Pastor Hans Overduin and our topic was on Joseph. I cannot say enough about how we all appreciated Pastor Hans. He has a true servant's heart and is a walking example of humility. He spent many hours mingling among the youth and gave speeches that we will never forget.
Friday night: Joseph's Sweat
Here we saw that Joseph was a hard worker and that he was diligent. He didn't lapse into self-pity or play the blame game for the way his life was turning out. Instead he worked hard so that ran Potipher's home despite coming to Egypt as a slave. After being thrown in prison he became in charge of the prison and later on he was given the task of planning for the famine.
Are we diligent or are we a sluggard who desires nothing? Do we leave jobs half done or are we diligent with our time? Do we read wholesome books, take time for daily devotions, fill our mind with wholesome things?
Saturday night: Joseph's Tears
We read that on seven different occasions Joseph wept. He never wept for himself but it was always for others. What you cry about or not reflects a lot about your life. Strong and mature people know how to weep - even in your heart. Joseph's tears proved that he would not hold grudges and that he had a tender heart.
Sunday morning: Joseph's Coat
The eyes are the gate to the soul. Mrs. Potipher set her eyes upon Joseph and lusted after him. Joseph was a young man, alone in a foreign land. He intensely refused her advances and that must of not been easy for him. Joseph did not want to do great evil in the eyes of God but he knew how quickly he could falter so he tried to have other people around him in the household. Mrs. Potipher took drastic measures and caught him alone. Joseph, by the grace of God fled, leaving his coat behind.
Pastor Hans pleaded with the audience to keep themselves pure. Sexual temptation is enticing, ensnaring, enslaving. It has caused huge heartbreak and words cannot express the devastation that it leaves. Pastor Hans also talked about David and how he received complete forgiveness from God when he committed adultery. Guard your eyes and pray for strength. When we met in our groups after we encouraged our group to have someone to be accountable to weekly whether or not you are dating.
Sunday evening: Joseph's Bones
Later on in life Joseph kept the faith while embedded in riches and pleasures. Life is frail and short compared to eternity. We all have to die, and some may even die young. To die in faith you need to live in faith, so Joseph requested that when he died that he not be buried in a foreign land but that he believed the promise of God - they would be brought to a promised land. Joseph's bones were a testimony that he believed God's promises.
Pastor Hans is a big fan of acrostics to help you learn. Here are the ones he shared:
Joseph by grace resisted the temptations of sin in the way of:

H - High view of God! Keeping in mind God's attributes!                                         
O- Owning sin for what it is! All sin is great wickedness!                                         
L- Little view of self! Too weak to hesitate at sin's door. RUN!                              
I - In consideration of those who respected & trusted & loved him!                        
N- Not expecting ungodly to prize God's ways; the world rejects it.                        
E - Entrusting self to God, believing God honors those who honor Him!                
  S-Saviour Seeking! Saviour-supplied!                                                                       
S- Saviour-strengthened! Saviour- sanctified! Saviour-serving! Saviour-satisfied!

HOPE - helping others persevere expectantly

B - Believe in the Lord right down to your bones       
 O - Obedience to God's law without wavering             
N- Not unequally yoked                                               
E - expectantly waiting on God & eternally minded   
S - sense of mission and spreading the gospel of hope

A big thank you to Kim and Jan for all of the preparation for camp. It must be a lot of work but it all pays off! We also appreciated Pastor Tim. He and his wife took the time to talk with the young peoples and mingle with them. Until next year...