Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Food and Fun in Louisiana

More fishing-croppies are so yummy!!

Challenging teens to a game of ping pong and showing NO mercy!

I, too, am getting "into painting". Actually I am a very good trimmer!

Enjoying a beautiful day at Avery Island among the blooming azaleas.

King Cake-a Mardi Gras tradition. This is only one of the many "southern" dishes we have been enjoying. Others include- fried catfish, sweet tea, cheese grits, kale, collard greens, peanut butter pie, smoked mullet(fish), jumbalaya, frog legs, and of course crayfish!

Can't wait to see what we will experience in Arizona!

Monday, February 16, 2009

The BIG ONE didn't get away!

After a day's volunteering at Tall Timber's Baptist Conference Center Hunter loves to "throw in a fishing line". This is just one of the blessings God provides as we serve Him. Check out his recent catch!

Tonight we feasted on lake bass. Delicious!!

Monday, February 9, 2009

"Hair-raising" Challenge

What do you do when a 43 foot RV plus an attached car is wedged
between a cement wall and a wooden fence? PRAY!
This is the predicament we found ourselves in on our way to the Louisiana MMAP project.

The day started sunny and warm as we traveled along interstate 10 through Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana. Early afternoon found us driving north of Baton Rouge and just a few miles from Tall Timbers Baptist Conference Center. Our "faithful", if not truly accurate GPS system, which we named Greta after Greta Garbo, had directed us along highway 165 and suddenly informed us that on the left "you have arrived at your destination". We just looked at each other and smiled because she was wrong again. There was not even a driveway "on the left".

Next step-drive several more miles then break out the cell phone, for which we are VERY thankful and call the camp. After connecting with the director we learn we have passed the entrance about three miles back. OK-just turn around.

Well, you don't just turn around a 53+ foot "carivan" at the stop light.
Hunter sees a gas station, which we have used in the past for such a maneuver. After all, don't gas stations need lots of space for the gas tankers to fill their pumps?

In theory yes, but in practice not necessarily, as we soon learned. Like a hog going through a shoot into a truck Hunter drives our RV around behind the station and turns the corner fully expecting to find a wide section on the side of the building where he can drive through to the front and back out onto the highway. As the side of the building comes into view we realize not only is the cement too narrow but there is an overhang on the building about 11 feet in height, which definately won't clear our 12' 9 inche height. Sweat starts to roll off my dear husband's forehead as he realizes there's no going any further forward.

OK-we'll just unhook the car and back out. Remember that hog going down the shoot to the truck analogy? Hogs don't do well going backwards-nor do 43 foot RVs when there is a cement curb and a fence behind. After much effort, because the car towbar is not "straight on", we finally unhook the car and I move it out of the way.

Next, Hunter instructs me to direct him backwards inch by inch. Right! I'm praying feverishly and God graciously brings the camp director to our assistance. (He had been waiting at the camp entrance and went out in search of us when we didn't show up.)He takes over my job-YES! I can then step back and continue my job of pleading with the Lord to simply lift us back onto the highway. After all He is in the business of miracles-right?

After several forward and backward moves which have positioned the RV just 4 inches from the side of the fence Hunter gets out of the driver's seat and decides to test the firmness of the field adjacent to the gas station. I fully believe God gave him that idea. He returns from a short walk, opens the RV door, and announces "I'm trying it." He then proceeds to slowly drive over the field, thankful for dry ground, and into the parking lot of a Dollar Store as I cheer him on. After having only one customer's car moved he is able to get back onto the highway. I quickly follow in the car and in a matter of 15 minutes we are in the camp.

It is another tight squeeze to get into our assigned camp sight but Hunter manages it beautifully. He casually gets out of the rig and says, "Let's hook up". As for me, I told him I needed a few minutes to dry off my sweaty palms and quiet my racing pulse.
I'm learning that this full time RVing carries unique challenges and yet we continue to love it! Life is indeed never dull or boring.

We love the location.

Here is a photo of our "backyard" view. Not bad-huh?

Monday, February 2, 2009

"Ancient Blog"

On Sunday Hunter and I attended Generations Christian Church in Tarpon Springs, Florida. People were full of energy and the message very inspiring. The pastor was beginning a four part series in the Psalms that was titled "Ancient Blog". As people today "pour" out their feelings and reflections on life in blogs on the internet the writers of the psalms "poured" out their thoughts to God; hence the title.
The first message, "Greater Than the Cloud of My Confusion" was based on Psalm 71 and reminded us that God is there during the wilderness times in our lives. In the Psalm we see a progression of life from birth to old age:
"From birth I have relied on you; you brought me forth from my mother's womb."(6)
"Since my youth, O God, you have taught me and to this day I declare your marvelous deeds." (17)
"Even when I am old and gray, do not forsake me, O God til I declare your power to the next generation, your might to all who are to come." (18)

The pastor challenged us to take a look back and see God's faithfulness, which will sustain us and give us hope as we go through our deserts. As I have been doing that today stategic church "bodies" came to mind and I'd like to share my thoughts.

From birth :Stanley Union Church gave me a wealth of Bible stories and taught me to memorize scripture. It was at the foot of their cross that I accepted Christ as my Savior.

From my youth:Grace Evangelical Free Church "introduced" me to life-long friends and opportunities to serve the Lord, as well as sound Bible teaching that enriched my walk with the Lord. During this period of my life I was also priviledged to spend three years in China worshiping with thousands Christians at The International Fellowship in Beijing. There I had a glimpse of future heavenly praise with all races worshiping in one voice.

From my old age:Manna Church allowed me to experience the joy of seeing God use my children in His service. Now Sunday by Sunday I take notes and learn from a variety of churches and walk away awed by God's grace to a world of sinners saved!

My prayer is that as I continue to grow older God will give me the priviledge of "declaring God's power to the next generation"-my grandchildren!

Take a few moments today to reflect on God's goodness to you and the churches that have influenced your walk with Him.