Monday, June 29, 2015

Ms. Molly's Mission Trip

In just a few days my friend Molly leaves for the Zambia Medical Mission 2015.  Molly and her family have participated in this mission field for several years.  Molly is part of my ladies Monday night Bible study group.  

Tonight several of the ladies from our Bible study group and our kiddos met up at the church building to help Molly get ready for her children's Bible classes.  The Mission Team is anticipating seeing 15,000 people.  The medical team will offer Cervical Cancer Screenings, Cataract Surgeries, Dental Clinics and Molly's team will conduct Children's Bible Classes. 

In three hours we helped her get materials ready for 2,500 kids!  Can't wait until she gets back to hear the wonderful things that happened on her mission trip! 

“Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.  Mark 16:15 

Sixth Floor Museum Send Off

For the past five years Caleb has served on the Sixth Floor Museum’s Youth Advisory Council.  They are youth ambassadors and docents for the museum.  He has really enjoyed serving on the committee and interacting with the wonderful programs the museum offers. 

Today was the last Youth Advisory Committee meeting for Caleb and the other graduating senior Ellisa.  Elissa is headed to Johns Hopkins University as a Political Science major, with a minor in Economics. Ms. Ani, their adviser made sure they had a great send off!   

for there is a reward for your work,
declares the Lord . . .     
There is hope for your future,
declares the Lord
Jeremiah 31:16-17

Men of Valor

I’m so amazed at these guys! Usually at Metro Relief the kids help with unloading the truck, serving clients, stocking shelves etc; but this morning the need was for help with Intake. Intake is where a volunteer greets a guest, offers services and most importantly prays with our guest.

Today Caleb and Dylan stepped up and helped out! They were totally comfortable with visiting with the guests and PRAYING for their physical and spiritual needs. My kids are blessed with really great friends!

In the fall Dylan is headed to Oklahoma Christian and I'm looking forward to the great things he will do in the future. 

do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.  Philippians 4:6

Friday, June 26, 2015

Caleb's 18th Birthday

I'm not sure how to begin this post, it seems crazy that my little man is now an adult!  In the blink of an eye he has become a man and I am so very proud of him.  He is exactly the character and caliber of person Jon and I hoped to raise. And only by the grace of God has he become such a great person. 

Anytime anyone has ever asked, 'are you Caleb's mom?' it has been my joy to answer, yes.  Happy birthday, son, you are a delight! 

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
    the fruit of the womb a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior
    are the children of one's youth.
Blessed is the man
    who fills his quiver with them!
He shall not be put to shame
    when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.
Psalm 127:3-5

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Oh, Cabana Boy!

Now that church camp and Vacation Bible School are in the books, summer can now begin!  The girls decided our first activity should be a visit to Hawaiian Falls to harass our favorite cabana boy! You can imagine his enthusiasm at seeing us while he worked in the hot sun! 

We packed sunscreen, our cooler and had a wonderful day in the sun!  With all the rain, the water was still cool for Texas in late June! Fortunately with the water park being just a mile and a half down the road, we can come back when it warms up!

From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch
 becomes tender and puts out its leaves,
you know that summer is near.  Matthew 24:32

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Daniel Vacation Bible School Night 4

Ahh, the final night of Vacation Bible School!  I really enjoy writing the scripts for VBS, but the best part is seeing the songs, actors, costumes, backdrops come together!  It's especially gratifying when you hear from kids and adults who learned nuggets from scripture they didn't know before! 

In the continuing story of Daniel and friends, tonight King Darius took over Babylon. Although Darius was a strategic military leader he wasn't well versed in the intracranial process of ruling.  He was tricked by his advisers into throwing Daniel into the lion's den for worshiping God. 

After the final performance the kiddos come to hug and get their pictures taken with their favorite Bible characters.  It's so amazing and humbling to hear these little bodies repeating portions of the Bible lesson back to you! 

My God sent his angel and shut the lions' mouths,
and they have not harmed me, because I was found blameless 
before him;
and also before you, O king, I have done no harm. Daniel 6:22

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Daniel Vacation Bible School Night 3

Daniel and Friends moved forward with our night 3 of our Vacation Bible School. Tonight Daniel interpreted King Nebuchadnezzar's dream and we saw King Neb living in the wild and eating grass!  Upon his death, his son Belshazzar took over the kingdom of Babylon.  He foolishly treated the items that has once belonged in the Lord's temple with contempt, and the writing was on the wall! 

Another enjoyable evening teaching Bible class to 500+ kiddos! 

You have praised the gods of silver and gold, of bronze, iron,
wood, and stone, which do not see or hear or know, 
but the God in
whose hand is your breath, and 
whose are all your ways,you have not honored.
 Daniel 5:23

Monday, June 22, 2015

Daniel Vacation Bible School Night 2

Our lesson on Daniel and friends continued tonight.  Tonight Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego refused to bow down to the statue of gold that King Nebuchadnezzar had built on the plain of Dura resulting in them being thrown into the fiery furnace.  But again, God rewarded their faithfulness and delivered them unharmed! 

Bible Class Betty reviewed yesterday's lesson and introduced today's Bible story.  Caleb is still serving in King Neb's service and Abigail was one of the fiery flames! Some of the fun class room activities included one of our chemistry teachers showing the kids the color of flames various chemicals make. Very cool! 

Our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, but if He does not, we will not serve your gods or
worship the golden image that you have set up.
Daniel 3:17

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Daniel Vacation Bible School Night 1

Tonight kicked off the Church of Christ on McDermott Road's Vacation Bible School!  Each night we will progress through the faithfulness of Daniel and his friends.  Tonight we covered Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego being taken into Babylonian captivity.  We saw the boys being trained in the ways of the Babylonians, their names changing, and being presented with the food from the king's table. 

We present the Bible lesson in a musical drama production and then the kids and adults have class time for reinforcement, crafts, etc. 

I had a blast being Bible Class Betty, that Sunday School Teacher we've all had at some point!  Frankie spent the evening with her four year kids.  Abigail was one of the palace food girls and Caleb was one of King Nebuchadnezzar's guards.  It was great family fun with over 500 in attendance! 

As for these four youths, God gave them learning and skill in all literature and wisdom, and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.  Daniel 1:17

Thursday, June 18, 2015

An Unexpected Journey

Monday of this week I made an unexpected trip to Tulsa.  My brother Michael was hospitalized for a heart attack and had a balloon angioplasty surgery and a stent with 100% blockage. 
He is doing better, and hopes to be released in a few days with follow up doctor's appointments and physical therapy.
Thanks to friends for all your prayers, they have been felt and answered!

Listen, my son, the answer to my prayers!
Proverbs 31:2

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Vacation Bible School Rehearsal

Life doesn't slow down, not even for tired campers or softball players!  On Sunday afternoons and Friday nights we have rehearsal for the upcoming Vacation Bible School.  This year the Church of Christ on McDermott Road's VBS will be Daniel and Friends. 
Again this year I have written the drama production to present the Bible lesson each night.  Other very talented people have written songs combined with fun talent to present a wonderful musical!
Each night I will present the introduction to the lesson as Bible Class Betty.  She's been teaching Sunday School since the Old Testament was New!
Caleb will be one of the guards through out the various kings during the life of Daniel.  Abigail will be part of the chorus and will play a different role each of the four evenings.  Sissy will be helping with the four year old class, and Jon is responsible for taking photos and transportation!
Are you wiser than Daniel?
    Is no secret hidden from you?
Ezekiel 28:3

Back at Bat

After a week in the mountains of New Mexico for a week in the lovely seventy-five degree weather, the Texas heat was a big adjustment for my softball player. 
Right after church services this morning she had a game in the almost 94 degree weather with our crazy humidity.  The girl was breathing hard!  Not her best game, but I'm pleased that even though she's worn out, she was back on the field with her team.

I will come to your temple with burnt offerings
    and fulfill my vows to you—
vows my lips promised and my mouth spoke
    when I was in trouble. 
Psalm 66:13-14

Saturday, June 13, 2015

They're Back!!

Ten hours on the chartered bus and my babies are back home!  What a long, quiet week without the kids.  Frankie was so happy to have her kids home! 
Our first stop was slushies for everyone!

Children are a heritage from the Lordoffspring a reward from him.  Psalm 127:3

Senior Walk

One of the last activities of the camp is the senior blessing.  The graduating seniors are presented with a final blessing as they leave the camp, knowing they are headed on to adulthood.  Mr. Bronniman, our friend from McDermott was the one to give the blessing this year, making it especially emotional for Caleb. 
The seniors are the last to walk across the bridge and leave the camp grounds.  Such a touching moment, Abigail said there wasn't a dry eye around.  These kids will do great things for His kingdom!

Your father’s blessings are greater
    than the blessings of the ancient mountains,
    than the bounty of the age-old hills. 
Genesis 49:26

Friday, June 12, 2015

More Camp Blue Haven

Just a few more pictures from Camp Blue Haven in Las Vegas, New Mexico.  Several of the kids friends have sent the photos they took over the course of the week. 
It's funny to think that it's summer time but up in the mountains the kids are still wearing jackets.  The kids went on two 9 mile hikes. One evening the hiked and spent the night out in the mountains.  In the past they've seen bears!

Your righteousness is like the highest mountains,
    your justice like the great deep.
    You, Lord, preserve both people and animals.
Psalm 36:6

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Camp Blue Haven

Just a few more pictures from camp of twins day, the talent show, hikes, and other fun events.  On twins day Abigail and the girls dressed as M&M's. 

On the first day of camp all the youth groups wear their church youth shirts.  The McDermott kids wore their Emma shirts.  Emma is a little girl at church who has undergone multiple heart surgeries. 
For the talent show the girls cabin wrote their own skit.  Caleb chose to perform the history of the Old Testament in five minutes, complete with gestures and voices.  Three of the kids from McDermott were baptized during the week.  One evening Caleb gave the evening devotional on Jonathan.  So many great things going on during the week!  I'm so grateful the kids could have such an experience.   
Jonathan said to David, “Go in peace, for we have sworn friendship with each other in the name of the Lord, saying, ‘The Lord is witness between you and me, and between your descendants and my descendants forever.’” I Samuel 20:42

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Blue Haven Friends

Now that Abigail is headed into high school she gets to be a big sister to one of the younger campers.  This was one of Abigail's favorite benefits of camp when she was a younger camper.
The girls have Bible study together in the morning and group chapel in the evening.  Each of the cabins were teamed up as brother and sister cabins with the same age groups together.  Most of the daily activities were done with the girl's brother cabin.  The hikes and ropes course were done with brother and sister cabins together. 

The disciples, as each one was able,
decided to provide help for the brothers and sisters
Acts 11:29

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Anything You Can Do . . .

True to her personality, anything Caleb can do Abigail can do also!  Thirty-two foot telephone pole, no problem!  Jump off and grab flying pole, again, no problem!  She was the first to volunteer to go off for her group.   I'm very grateful for the pictures from our friends!

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous.
Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged,
for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
Joshua 1:9

Monday, June 8, 2015

Blue Haven Leap of Faith

One of the kids favorite activities at camp are the challenge courses.  They have several high ropes including a zip line, swing and the leap of faith.  For the leap of faith the kids climb up a 32' telephone pole and jump off to grab a bar and ride the bar down.
One of the camp counselors went me these pictures of Caleb doing the leap of faith.  I love the one of him flying through the air!
The Lord is my strength and my shield;
    my heart trusts in him, and he helps me.
My heart leaps for joy,
    and with my song I praise him.
Psalm 28:7

Sunday, June 7, 2015

They're Off!

Immediately after graduation, Jon and the two younger kids headed to New Mexico.  Camp Blue Haven's session 1 was set to begin today.  Most of the church group left yesterday but because of the graduation ceremony Jon drove the ten hours to deliver the kids safely to Las Vegas, New Mexico.   This is their fifth year to attend camp and they love the cooler weather and mountain terrain. 
After checking the kids in, Jon turned around and drove back home.  What a great dad!

My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline,
    and do not resent his rebuke,
because the Lord disciplines those he loves,
    as a father the son he delights in.
Proverbs 3:11-12

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Family Graduation Celebration

With the graduation in the books, it was time to celebrate a little bit more! Our Oklahoma crew headed for one more celebration.  Nothing says family time like a meal together and best of all, no dishes!
It was great and much too brief to have everyone together!

Then he gave a feast for all his court. I Kings 3:15

Graduation Reception

Caleb and Richard's graduated through NTHEN, a homeschool support group that offers a formal graduation ceremony and reception for about 25 seniors.  It is the same group Frankie graduated with twelve years ago.  The parents bestow the diploma on the graduate and there is a guest speaker, organist, photographers etc. 
Many of the kids friends joined us along with family members from Oklahoma.  It was a great day to celebrate this milestone in the boys lives!

I will celebrate before the Lord 2 Samuel 6:21

Homeschool Graduation

Today is Caleb's Graduation Day, that is almost unbelievable to write.  I'm not sure when we moved from Legos to diplomas! 
It would be easy to dwell on how quickly the time has past or my anxiety for his future, but that doesn't seem profitable.  Here is what I know for sure, this is the young man Jon and I hoped to raise.  If I had mapped out 17+ years ago the young man I wanted to see standing before me, it would be Caleb. 
No he's not perfect, but by the grace of God, He alone has magnified the things we got right and minimized our parenting mistakes.   I look forward to his future and remain so grateful for the young man who stands before me!

It is good for a man to bear the yoke
    while he is young.
Let him sit alone in silence,
    for the Lord has laid it on him.
Lamentations 3:37-28

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Batting Practice at Extra Innings

Tonight was hitting lesson with coach Kelly at Extra Innings.  In addition to her two weekly 3-hour practices with Southern Force, Abigail is also expected to practice on her own during the week. 
Abigail and Jon head out to Extra Innings every week for batting practice and every couple of weeks she has batting, catching, or fielding practice with Kelly. 
Today while Kelly worked with Abigail, Jon helped Sissy hit off the tee.
Hopefully all that practice will have the girl ready for tournament play!

... all those who practice it have a good understanding... Psalm 111:10