Friday, April 20, 2007

What's up with the name?

Garden of Grace...
Garden...I don't want to disappoint or mislead anyone. No we are not master gardeners. Our yard is not beautifully ornamented with flowers and plants, nor do we harvest any herbs or vegetables from a well cared for plot. If you need advice on your gardening endeavors, it's best for you to ask anyone else! When our children come in from outside they only appear as if they have been planting and weeding a garden!

Grace...A seemingly effortless beauty of movement, form, or manner...Yes, with the exception of our 4-year-old, all of our girls have had some dance classes yet although they do look adorable in their dance attire this doesn't describe the way they move about or any of us for that matter!

A charming or pleasing quality or characteristic...I will say that all my girls have some of this, especially with their daddy!

We first chose this name for our home school at the beginning of this school year, actually the full name being "Garden of Grace Girls Academy". Then when we were thinking of a name for our blog we decided on this for the same reason: We desire our lives to be a place where we grow to be more like God, full of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. But just as our gardening of plants comes up short, we can not attain this from just our own efforts. Believe me there have been times in my life I thought I just needed to try harder. No, we all need GRACE...the state of being protected or sanctified by the favor and love of God. Yes, we desire God to sanctify make us like Him and be set apart for His use. This is not a one time, red letter day on the calendar. No, this is a process. This is a journey we are on with Jesus.


Sunday, April 15, 2007

Great Teamwork

We had a very busy day. We started the day of with Alexie's game. The girls played very well together, passing and positioning themselves. They were rewarded with a win on the score as well. Alayna's team also learned some teamwork skills as the game went along. They weren't able to win in points, but they played hard and had a great time. The weather wasn't as cold nor wet as the forecast had indicated - a real blessing.

Later we went to Thomas' parents to enjoy a belated Easter celebration. The girls had a great time playing with their cousins.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Let the Games Begin!

This weekend Alayna and Alexie's soccer teams have their first games. Both teams practiced tonight on a very soogy field. While it wasn't raining, the ground was soaked. Oh the memories - and the laundry. Really though, our family enjoys soccer season. It is a fun time with friends.

I thought I might take a few minutes to share a little of my spiritual journey with you. My spiritual journey began at a young age. When I was four, I was at a Vacation Bible School. I remember we were outside. The teacher had her small group of kids (except one cute, little, blond boy) in a little circle on the grass. She asked whether any of us wanted to ask Jesus into our hearts. I doubt she ever know that as I was walking around a tree near the group, I asked Him into my heart.

Of course, my faith and knowledge have grown as I have grown over the years. But that is only by the grace of our Lord. Throughout my life, He has put people into my life that have been like trail markers, affirming that I am on the right path and guiding me along the way. I can remember people like my Sunday School teacher, Mrs. Humphrey, who made me feel like I was really special. Later there was my youth pastor, Pastor Ted, who showed me what it means to serve within a church. There were numerous others who God brought into my life at different times. Each showed me a different aspect of walking with Jesus. Each showed me what I needed to see at that time.

God is so faithful! He not only prepares the way, He prepares us to follow Him.

Saturday, April 7, 2007

He is risen! He is risen, indeed!

For the past 5 years, our family has been participating in and leading short-term missions projects. Last summer, we felt God leading us to take the next step and expand on this ministry.

In June we will be leaving our home and going to Oregon for training with Youth With A Mission (YWAM). Our YWAM applications were sent last fall and have been accepted. Passport applications have been submitted at the post office. We are now inviting people to partner with us.

This blog is dedicated to sharing what God has done, and is doing, in our lives. It is particularly exciting to initiate this during the Easter season. No other event can begin to describe what He has done in our lives. What love was expressed by the Lord of all creation that He would put on skin and carry the burden of our sin to the cross! But the wonder of the story is not that Jesus came and lived among us. Not even that He submitted to death on the cross. No, the wonder of the story is that He rose from the dead, proclaiming victory over death itself. Through the sacrifice of Jesus, we are able to have a relationship with God and be called His children!