Nov 30, 2005

Unique Service

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 2:8-9

Unique Service

The beautiful thing about serving as a Christian is that it happens after we’ve met with the one who gave himself in the ultimate act of service; we don’t have to serve to get to him. This unique quality of service in the Christian faith is astonishingly different from other world religions. Many other belief systems, for instance, suggest that good works or proper, moral deeds can provide the path to salvation, perfection, or heaven. The emphasis in these others is on the individual’s efforts to live a good life in order to atone for his sin or bad life; for the Christian believer, however, Christ has done the work already on the cross and gives us his grace, character, and Holy Spirit to live a life “worthy of the calling” (Eph. 4:1). We do nothing but open our hands to receive his compassion, which then spills out of our hands into gracious acts of mutual service.

Taken from chapter 4 of Feast Of Life by Jo Kadlecek

Picture taken from (c)

Nov 29, 2005

Me interviewed by…me!

So, how old are you?
I am 15.

Hey! So am I! Sorry, back to the questions.

So you are in high school? What school do you go to?
Yes, I’m in my sophomore year. And I am homeschooled.

How long have you been homeschooled?
Ever since I started school. I’ve never been to public school.


How long have you been a Christian?
I’ve been a Christian since I was about 4.

When did you move to Belgium?
We moved here in 1996.

So you’ve not been back to the US in 9 years?!
No! No! We’ve been back several times.

Oh, okay. . .

What is your favorite book, besides the Bible.
I guess it would have to be Pride and Prejudice.

Oh, I love that book!

Who is your favorite Christian artist?
Rebecca St. James.

I like her too.

What do you like to do for fun?
Play the piano.

How long have you played the piano?
Well, I started learning the notes when I was 5 and kinda played around with it for a few years. But I’ve had good lessons for about 3 ½ years. My piano teacher is British.

Hmmm…what else do I want to ask you. Oh yeah!

You have a dog, right?
Yes. His name is Buster.

What kind of dog is he?
He is a Yorkshire Terrier.

Now lets talk about your blog a little bit.

Did you ever think you would start a blog?


In your profile, I noticed that you were asked to describe how you would escape if you were trapped in a well with a goat and a slinky. You said, “Call for help on a cell phone.” But what would you do if you did not have a cell phone with you?
I would just yell for help.

What about the goat and the slinky, what would you do about them?
I would be trying the talk the goat into not hurting me and for something to do until help arrived, I would play with the slinky.

But what if no one heard you yelling for help?
Why are you asking me this? I’m not even trapped in a well, and hopefully I never will be.

Okay, no more on that. One last question.

Do you enjoy working on this blog, or are you bored with it?
No, I’m not bored with it. I like working on it. And it has really helped me to learn more about computers.

Thank you for your time.
You’re welcome.

Picture taken from (c)

Nov 28, 2005

Bible Verse

[Jesus said] “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.”

John 14:1-4

Picture taken from (c)

Nov 23, 2005

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving Weather Forecast

In the pre-Thanksgiving rush, we have received an early weather report from our in-house weather reporters.

Turkeys will thaw in the morning, then warm in the oven to an afternoon high near 190F. The kitchen will turn hot and humid, and if you bother the cook, be ready for a severe
squall or cold shoulder.

During the late afternoon and evening, the cold front of a knife will slice through the turkey, causing an accumulation of one to two inches on plates. Mashed potatoes will drift across one side while cranberry sauce creates slippery spots on the other. Please pass the gravy.

A weight watch and indigestion warning have been issued for the entire area, with increased stuffiness around the beltway. During the evening, the turkey will diminish and taper off to leftovers, dropping to a low of 34F in the refrigerator.

Looking ahead to Friday and Saturday, high pressure to eat sandwiches will be established. Flurries of leftovers can be
expected both days with a 50 percent chance of scattered soup late in the day. We expect a warming trend where soup develops. By early next week, eating pressure will be low as the only wish left will be the bone.

'Twas the Night of Thanksgiving

'Twas the night of Thanksgiving, But I just couldn't sleep.
I tried counting backwards, I tried counting sheep
The leftovers beckoned --- The dark meat and white,
But I fought the temptation with all of my might.

Tossing and turning with anticipation
The thought of a snack became infatuation.
So I raced to the kitchen, Flung open the door,
And gazed at the fridge full of goodies galore.
I gobbled up turkey and buttered potatoes,
Pickles and carrots, beans and tomatoes.

I felt myself swelling so plump and so round,
Till all of a sudden, I rose off the ground !!

I crashed through the ceiling. Floating into the sky....
With a mouthful of pudding and a handful of pie,
But I managed to yell as I soared past the trees ...



Have a great Thanksgiving!

I'll post more next week.



Pictures taken from (c)

Nov 22, 2005

Speaking Words of Wisdom

A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. The tongue of the wise commends knowledge, but the mouth of the fool gushes folly.

Proverbs 15:1-2

A wise man’s heart guides his mouth, and his lips promote instruction. Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.

Proverbs 16:23-24

Job’s friends pelted him with unrelenting words. Like torrential rains on parched soil, their words gouged deep gullies. Job attempted to escape like a tired swimmer, only to be crushed with a fresh wave of words. His comforters rapped him with anger, guilt, idle chatter, ignorance, and faulty conclusions. And he remained crushed instead of wrapped in comfort.

Do your words rain down comfort? Love chooses to cover instead of condemn. Job’s choice confronts us daily. Some people provoke us to exchange blow for blow, gossip for gossip, curse for curse, rebuke for rebuke. To speak as Job’s comforters spoke requires no wisdom or strength from God. That kind of speech comes naturally. But if we choose to use our words to encourage and comfort, we will need supernatural strength.

God is ready when you are.

By Jan Carlberg

Picture taken from (c)

Nov 21, 2005

Checking In

A minister passing through his
church in the middle of the day,
Decided to pause by the altar
and see who had come to pray.

Just then the back door opened,
a man came down the aisle,
The minister frowned as he saw
the man hadn't shaved in a while.

His shirt was kinda shabby
and his coat was worn and frayed.
The man knelt, he bowed his head,
then rose and walked away.

In the days that followed,
each noon time came this chap,
Each time he knelt just for a moment,
a lunch pail in his lap.

Well, the minister's suspicions grew,
with robbery a main fear,
He decided to stop the man and ask him,
"What are you doing here?"

The old man said, he worked down the road.
Lunch was half an hour.
Lunchtime was his prayer time,
for finding strength and power.

"I stay only moments, see,
because the factory is so far away;
As I kneel here talking to the Lord,
this is kinda what I say:



The minister feeling foolish,
told Jim, that was fine.
He told the man he was welcome to come
and pray just anytime.

Time to go, Jim smiled, said "Thanks."
He hurried to the door.
The minister knelt at the alter,
he'd never done it before.

His cold heart melted, warmed with love,
and met with Jesus there.
As the tears flowed, in his heart,
he repeated old Jim's prayer:



Past noon one day, the minister noticed
that old Jim hadn't come.
As more days passed without Jim,
he began to worry some.

At the factory, he asked about him,
learning he was ill.
The hospital staff was worried,
but he'd given them a thrill.

The week that Jim was with them,
brought changes in the ward.
His smiles, a joy contagious.
Changed people, were his reward.

The head nurse couldn't understand
why Jim was so glad,
When no flowers, calls or cards came,
not a visitor he had.

The minister stayed by his bed,
he voiced the nurse's concern:
No friends came to show they cared.
He had nowhere to turn.

Looking surprised, old Jim spoke up
and with a winsome smile;
"The nurse is wrong, she couldn't know,
that in here all the while

Everyday at noon He's here,
a dear friend of mine, you see,
He sits right down, takes my hand,
leans over and says to me:"



Author Unknown

Picture taken from (c)

Bible Verse

He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

Isaiah 40:29-31

Picture taken from (c)

Nov 17, 2005

Let me get that for you!

Walking down the street, a man passes a house and notices a child trying to reach the doorbell. No matter how much the little guy stretches, he can't make it. The man calls out, "Let me get that for you," and he bounds onto the porch to ring the bell. "Thanks, mister," says the kid. "Now let's run."

Nov 16, 2005

Stop and Think

Evening and morning and at noon I will pray, and cry aloud, and He shall hear my voice.

Psalm 55:17

Praying Daily

Prayer is sort of like an unlocked door with a giant, red-lettered sign on it that says: “Welcome. Feel Free to Take Whatever You Need.” Inside is the storehouse of all that God is. He invites us to share it all. He doesn’t intend for us to stay on the outside and struggle all alone with the perplexities of life, and He not only invites us to come in but to stay in, in order that His “Grace and peace be yours in fullest measure, through the knowledge of God and Jesus our Lord” (2 Pet. 1:2, NEB, emphasis mine)….

It is an ongoing process, not just an occasional religious-sounding speech we make to a nebulous divinity “out there somewhere.” Prayer is meant to be a part of our lives, like breathing and thinking and talking.

By Gloria Gaither

Picture taken from (c)

Nov 15, 2005


I thought this time I’d tell you a little bit about Belgium. (No, I’m not going to tell you the population number or how many square kilometers are in Belgium.)

What can I tell you about Belgium...?

Brussels is the capitol of Belgium. We live about 10-15 minutes away from it. Brussels is okay, but not my favorite place to go. Personally I like the city Brugge. We live about an hour away from it. I think it is the prettiest city in Belgium. People call Brugge "Little Venice" because it has a lot of canals running through it. (You can take boat rides on the canals.) If you ever come to Belgium that is one place you definitely want to visit!

Belgium is famous for its chocolates and lace. In Brussels there is a place called the Grand Place and around that area there are a lot of lace shops. There are also a lot of lace shops in Brugge.

The weather is normally cooler. And it rains a lot. So you don't want to leave the house without an umbrella. Sometimes the sky looks clear and you think, "It's not going to rain today." But then later it will start to rain. Then other times the sky looks cloudy and you think, "It's going to rain." But then later the sky clears up and it is a beautiful day!

Most of the people here have cars or vans. It's rarer to see big pick-up trucks and SUVs. It is because the road taxes are based on how big of an engine your vehicle has. So the bigger the engine you have, the more you pay on road taxes. And also the lanes on the road and the parking places are normally narrower than the ones in the US.

Some of the houses here have orange tile roofs. My mom said that's what she really noticed when we flew into Brussels for the first time. (Our house doesn't have an orange roof though.)

And here they eat frites (fries) with mayonnaise (It’s not the same mayonnaise that we put on a sandwich. It’s a different kind.) or frite sauce instead of always eating their frites with ketchup.

Here are some photos from Belgium.

Belgian Flag.

The Grand Place in Brussels

The Grand Place in Brussels.

A canal in Brugge.


Au Revoir!


Pictures taken from (c)

Nov 14, 2005

Bible Verse

Before the mountains were born or you brought forth the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.

Psalm 90:2

Picture taken from (c)

Nov 11, 2005

Guten Tag, Buon giorno, Hallo!!

(Guten Tag is German for hello, Buon giorno is Italian for hello, and Hallo is Dutch for hello.)

Hope your week went well!

I just got back a little while ago from the movies. I saw Chicken Little. It was a good movie. Okay, you may be thinking, “Isn’t that for little kids?” But really, it was a good movie. They have a lot of funny things in it. And what was great, was the fact that it was a clean movie. You did not have to worry about foul language or bad scenes.

I’m looking forward to the new movie Narnia that is going to release in December!

Thanksgiving! Can you believe it, it’s just 2 weeks away!! (But I really feel sorry for all the turkeys though.)

Prayer Request:

Continue to pray for those who were hit by the hurricanes this year. Even though we don’t hear as much about it on the news now, a lot of people are still suffering from those hurricanes and need us to pray for them.

Well, I guess this is it until next week.

Have a wonderful weekend!!



Pictures taken from (c)

Nov 10, 2005

Joke Four this Weak

(Don't worry, I haven't forgotten how to spell. I did it on purpose and you wheel sea why!)

Eye have a spelling chequer
It came with my pea sea
It plainly marques four my revue
Miss steaks eye kin knot sea.
Eye strike a key and type a word
And weight four it two say
Weather eye am wrong oar write.
It shows me strait a weigh.
As soon as a mist ache is maid
It nose bee fore two long
and eye can put the error rite.
Its rare lea ever wrong.
Eye have run this poem threw it
I am shore your pleased two no
Its letter perfect awl the weigh
My chequer tolled me sew.

Have a great day!!

Pictures taken from (c)

Nov 9, 2005

Stop and Think

Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Psalm 37:4

Delighting in God

What would you ask for if God offered you anything you desired? Would you ask for long life or riches or protection for those you love? Would you ask for wisdom or a deeper relationship with Him? When your wakeful mind isn't alert to tell you what you should ask for, would your unconscious heart ask for something that would please God?

Psalm 37, a psalm of David, tells us that if we delight ourselves in the Lord, He will give us the desires of our heart. Some people have said that this means that if we are seeking the Lord first, our desires will conform to His. I like to think that it actually means that God places the desires there to begin with.

by Mary Hampton

(This is a picture we took while visiting the Chincoteague and Assateague Islands in May)

Nov 8, 2005


Alex and Brett Harris from The Rebelution, have written about the continuing devastation from Hurricane Katrina. If you can, take some time and read their post. It really opens your eyes to see how much the people that were hit by Hurricane Katrina are still being affected.

Nov 7, 2005

Bible Verse

Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

Mark 10: 42-45

Nov 4, 2005


Hope you had a good week! (I'm telling you, to me the weeks are just flying by!)

I told you last week that they were tearing up the sidewalk across the street. Well, this morning we were told to move our cars. I thought it was because they were going to work on the sidewalk on this side of the street. But it turned out that they were the phone company and they had to tear up part of the sidewalk in order to do some work. (Why am I telling you this? Sidewalks are sidewalks.)

Anyway, these are some pictures from the trip to Austria that we took some time ago.

This is the Riding School in Austria.

This is a castle in Austria. (I can't remember the name)

While we were there, we took the Sound of Music Tour (The hills are alive with the sound of music...Oh, sorry! Where were we?) Anyway, we got to see some of the places where they filmed the Sound of Music. This is the outside of the church where Maria and Captain Von Trapp got married in the movie.

And this is the inside of the church.

Prayer Request:

Pray that God would give help and wisdom to President Bush and the others in our government. If you’re not from the US, pray for the government in your country.

You all have a great weekend!



Nov 3, 2005

Just For Fun!

One day a mailman was greeted by a boy and a huge dog. The mailman said to the boy, "does your dog bite?" "No," replied the boy. Just then the huge dog bit the mailman. The man yelled, "I thought your dog doesn't bite!" "He doesn't," replied the boy, "that's not my dog!"

Here's another one!! (I just had to put it in here too!)

This is a story about four people named Everybody, Somebody, Anybody and Nobody. There was an important job to be done and Everybody was sure that Somebody would do it. Anybody could have done it, but Nobody did. Somebody got angry about this, because it was Everybody's job. Everybody thought Anybody could do it, but Nobody realized that Everybody wouldn't do it. It ended up that Everybody blamed Somebody when Nobody did what Anbody could have done!

Nov 2, 2005

Stop and Think

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

John 3:16

Why the Cross?

Because sinners have no other hope.

Why the Cross?

Because it is the unassailable proof that we can be forgiven.

Let’s gaze on it together. As we draw close, don’t assume that you already know or understand what happened there. Come to the Cross as if for the first time. In the book When God Weeps, Steven Estes and Joni Eareckson Tada give the following account of Christ’s death. As you read, refuse to let the scene be familiar. Let its reality shock you and break your heart.

The face that Moses had begged to see—was forbidden to see—was slapped bloody (Exodus 33:19-20). The thorns God had sent to curse the earth’s rebellion now twisted around his own brow....

“On your back with you!” One raises a mallet to sink in the spike. But the soldier’s heart must continue pumping as he readies the prisoner’s wrist. Someone must sustain the soldier’s life minute by minute, for no man has this power on his own. Who supplies breath to his lungs? Who gives energy to his cells? Who holds his molecules together? Only by the Son do “all things hold together” (Colossians 1:17). The victim wills that the soldier live on—he grants the warriors continued existence. The man swings.

As the man swings, the Son recalls how he and the Father first designed the medial nerve of the human forearm—the sensations it would be capable of. The design proves flawless—the nerves perform exquisitely. “Up you go!” They lift the cross. God is on display in his underwear and can scarcely breathe.

But these pains are a mere warm-up to his other and growing dread. He begins to feel a foreign sensation. Somewhere during this day an unearthly foul odor began to waft, not around his nose, but his heart. He feels dirty. Human wickedness starts to crawl upon his spotless being—the living excrement from our souls. The apple of his Father’s eye turns brown with rot.

His Father! He must face his Father like this!

From heaven the Father now rouses himself like a lion disturbed, shakes his mane, and roars against the shriveling remnant of a man hanging on a cross. Never has the Son seen the Father look at him so, never felt even the least of his hot breath. But the roar shakes the unseen world and darkens the visible sky. The Son does not recognize these eyes.

“Son of Man! Why have you behaved so? You have cheated, lusted, stolen, gossiped—murdered, envied, hated, lied. You have cursed, robbed, overspent, overeaten—fornicated, disobeyed, embezzled, and blasphemed. Oh, the duties you have shirked, the children you have abandoned! Who has ever so ignored the poor, so played the coward, so belittled my name? Have you ever held your razor tongue? What a self-righteous, pitiful drunk—you, who molest young boys, peddle killer drugs, travel in cliques, and mock your parents. Who gave you the boldness to rig elections, foment revolutions, torture animals, and worship demons? Does the list never end! Splitting families, raping virgins, acting smugly, playing the pimp—buying politicians, practicing exhortation, filming pornography, accepting bribes. You have burned down buildings, perfected terrorist tactics, founded false religions, traded in slaves—relishing each morsel and bragging about it all. I hate, loathe these things in you! Disgust for everything about you consumes me! Can you not feel my wrath?”

Of course the Son is innocent. He is blamelessness itself. The Father knows this. But the divine pair have an agreement, and the unthinkable must now take place. Jesus will be treated as if personally responsible for every sin ever committed.

The Father watches as his heart’s treasure, the mirror-image of himself, sinks drowning into raw, liquid sin. Jehovah’s stored rage against humankind from every century explodes in a single direction.

“Father! Father! Why have you forsaken me?!”

But heaven stops its ears. The Son stares up at the One who cannot, who will not, reach down or reply.

The Trinity had planned it. The Son endured it. The Spirit enabled him. The Father rejected the Son whom he loved. Jesus, the God-man from Nazareth, perished. The Father accepted his sacrifice for sin and was satisfied. The Rescue was accomplished.

Don’t move too quickly from this scene. Keep gazing.

The Rescue accomplished here was for you. John Stott writes, “Before we can begin to see the cross as something done for us (leading us to faith and worship), we have to see it as something done by us (leading us to repentance)....As we face the cross, then, we can say to ourselves both ‘I did it; my sins sent Him there,’ and ‘He did it; His love took Him there.’”

Did you see your own offenses on the list of sins that necessitated the Cross? If not, name them yourself. Name your darkest sin. Now reflect on the fact that Christ bore the punishment for that sin. He took the punishment you deserved. Do you feel His passionate and specific love for you? He did for you. He was condemned and cursed so that you could go free—He was forsaken by God so that you would never be forsaken (Hebrews 13:5).

Taken from chapter 10 of Boy Meets Girl by Joshua Harris