Saturday, October 11, 2008

Montana/Utah Update

It has been a while since I posted on here and really need to catch up.
After Glacier we went to Ulm, Mt and Derrick taught the Bible study and the Sunday sermon. It was awesome and the people were great!! We had dinner with the pastor and his wife as well as their neighbors. It was a delicous homecooked meal!! Thank you Pastor Joe and Colleen. Ulm is a cute country town and I look forward to visiting again next year.
After Ulm we headed south to Helena, Mt. We had a interesting but great dinner with the pastor's family. We were introduced to "chicken slop". They have kids the same age as ours and the girls really loved being able to relax and play. Thank you Pastor Toby and Barb for a great evening and great fellowship.
After Montana we headed yet south again to Ogden/Salt Lake City, Ut. God took us to a Spanish speaking church to teach at. Derrick taught the morning Bible study and did the evening service. We had to have a translator, but God provided!! It is awesome where God takes us when we trust in Him. Thank you Pastor Jorge for having us and thank you for lunch/fellowship.
While we were in the Ogden ara we got to visit my step brother and his family. I finally got to meet my "new" nephew that is now 9 mths old. He is the cutest baby ever!!! We enjoyed a great visit and my step brother bbq'ed for us. It was such a treat.

A few days after that visit his girlfriend, Sidona met us at the children's museum with Ian (the baby) for a fun visit and outing. Thank you so much Sidona for meeting us there. I am glad I had this opportunity to get to know you.

Derrick and Riona playing with blocks.

Me and the girls playing a game on the huge map.

Our backyard next week will be Bryce Canyon and Zion National Parks!!!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Glacier National Park part 2

Jackson GlacierWe spent Thursday 9/18/08 exploring Two Medicine. That is a very beautiful area with a lake and a lot of hiking trails. Friday 9/19/08 we went to the east part of Going To The Sun Road and drove 20 miles on it. There are tons of waterfalls, streams, glaciers, wildlife, etc to look at. I took over 120 pictures yesterday of nature alone. At Weeping Wall Derrick soaked the girls. It felt good in the heat though. They are doing road work and the road ends at Weeping Wall so we were able to walk right up to the wall. When the road is open you can not do that. The road is VERY narrow and there is a lot of traffic.
Derrick holding Riona up to Weeping WallMichaela after Derrick held her up to the Wall

We stopped off at the visitor center at Logan Pass and hiked about 20 minutes toward Hidden Lake Overlook. We had about 30 more minutes to go when we all 4 gave out. Derrick had to carry Riona and Michaela could not walk it anymore. It is all paved and has stairs but is VERY steep. We got a good look at some glaiers though.

Derrick and Riona looking at the trail to Hidden Lake OverlookSome of the glaciers near Hidden Lake OverlookThe lakes up here are a bright blue with bright green in them. The streams and Rivers are a bright blue/green. This is caused by rocks being dropped into the water from the glaciers. The glaciers crush and grind up the roacks making "glacier flour". The glacier flour is what makes the bright blues and greens.

St. Mary LakeThe pictures do not do the glaciers justice at all. They are amazing to see in person. They are saying that by 2030 the glaciers up here will be completely gone.

A close up of a glacier

Bear Bait

Every time we decide to hike down a trail Michaela lags behind. When we start out on the trails there is a sign that warns that we are entering black bear and grizzly wilderness. It also warns that visitors have been attacked and killed before for no apparent reason. It then tells you what to do when hiking with bears. I keep telling Michaela to walk in front of me so I can see her, but she insists on walking way behind me then gets distracted by things and lingers while checking them out. So we have nick named her Bear Bait.

So far we have not seen any bears while hiking ... but we have seen bear poop!! That is close enough for me!!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Jr. Ranger Michaela

Michaela picked up the Jr. Ranger Book at the Apgar Visitor Center in Glacier National PArk last night and completed all her requirements to become a Jr. Ranger. She had to fill out 6 pages in the workbook (she did 8 pages!) and then interview a park ranger. This morning we turned in her workook and Ranger Denver Beddington swore her in as a Jr. Ranger and presented her with her badge. I am so proud of her. She did the 8 pages with very little help at all!!

With her certificate and badge

Glacier National Park part 1

We have a week before we are scheduled to be in the next town so we decided since we were so close that we would come up to Glacier National Park. We are staying 2 nights on the west side and then we will head to the east side and explore that area for 2 days.
Today wrapped up the west side for us. We saw some swesome waterfalls, a huge lake (Lake McDonald), what is left of the glaciers, did some hiking, and went for a few real nice rides.
*In a couple days I will add part 2 of this post with experiences from the East Side of Glacier.

Here are a few of the pictures we took today.

Riona and Michaela standing next to one of the famous tour buses

The closest we have gotten to a bear so far

Riona and Derrick hiking down to the river to see some waterfalls

Michaela and Riona taking a break at Lake McDonald

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Thompson Falls, Montana

We arrived in Thompson Falls, Mt yesterday afternoon. Derrick spoke at the Community Congregational Church here this morning. It went awesome. Afterward we had an awesome lunch at Minnie's Cafe with Dan.

A very nice couple from the church has let us park on their property while we are here, Don and Jane. They have a wonderful view of the river. Don just took us for a ride in his boat and while out on the water we saw a big Ospry, a Great Blue Herron, and a Bald Eagle. The one time I forget my camera!! Thank you Don for the wonderful boat ride.

There is a place here in Thompson Falls that they call Power Plant Island. The river goes around the island and they have built 2 dams (one on either side). We took a walk around that and it was very interesting with beautiful views.

Our time here has been great. The people are very friendly.
Riona and Michaela in front of the larger dam.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Kellogg, Idaho

Our first stop after St. Maries was Kellogg, Id. Derrick spoke at a four day event at the United Church of Kellogg. We had a great time and met many wonderful people. I cannot get over how nice and welcoming the people here are.

Our first night speaking a very nice lady offered to let us take the girls swimming in her indoor pool. The girls had a blast. Many many thanks to Jim and Norma Seaton for doing this for us.

While in Kellogg we stayed at the Crystal Gold Mine. They offer free rv camping and the sites are very clean and nice. Even though the campground is right up against the freeway it is relatively quiet here.

We took a tour of the Gold Mine. Very interesting. There is still veins in the mine and the tour guide was very knowledgeable. After the tour the girls got to pan for gold. They found tons of fool's gold, amathyst, star garnets, and some pretty rocks.
Thomas family in Crystal Gold Mine

St. Maries, Idaho

Well our time in St. Maries has come to an end. I am happy, but sad. I became very close to many people there. We attended St. Maries Foursquare church for 2 months. While with them we went camping at Loop Creek and took a drive up to Shefoot Mountain Summit, we attended their annual potluck/picnic at Cherry Bend Park, we played softball with them a few times, and we attended many potlucks. They will be missed greatly.

Pastor Steve Cox pitching at a softball game

We were in St. Maries on Labor Day weekend. That is when they have their Paul Bunyan Days. Let me tell you, It is HUGE!!!! They have a carnival, parades, races, water events, logging events, and so much more. We tried to attend as much as we could. The girls had a blast, especially at the carnival.

Michaela in the Kid and Doll Parade

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Happy Father's Day!!

I want to wish all fathers out there a Happy Father's Day. I hope you all had a very blessed day. I know we did. Church was awesome!! We tried out the St. Maries Foursquare Church today. What an awesome worship team they have!! I have been missing good worship since we left Living Faith Christian Fellowship. We spent it at my parent's house visiting and bbq'ing. The rain here finally stopped and the sun was shining. The water in the river has gone down a lot and the girls were able to enjoy a pedal boat ride with Nana and Papa.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Let's be serious...

I thought I should post up a little bit about what we are doing, why we are doing it, and what our mission is. First, a little about myself. I have felt the calling of God on my life so strongly for several years now. I knew years ago that God had called me into full time ministry, but I also knew that I wasn’t ready yet. I thank God that he didn’t let me jump in before He decided it was time, or I most certainly would have failed miserably and returned with my tail between my legs. The devil would have loved that! When I made the decision to enter into this ministry, I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that it was God telling me that it was time, and that is the assurance I have that this ministry will succeed; God started this ministry, not me, therefore it cannot fail.

I have felt for quite some time that the Body of Christ, that is we the church, is falling short of its duties and expectations as followers of Christ. I would estimate that in most churches the “true believers” or the “true Body of Christ” is made up of about 10% of the members. Those are the ones that are actually involved in the different ministries of their congregation; the children’s ministries, the food pantries, the clothes pantries, the bible studies, and any form of outreach, etc. The rest are only seen on Sundays. Perhaps to make an appearance?

Where did we get off track? Where did we lose the vision? Show me anywhere in the bible it tells us to “take care of my four and no more”? The church is supposed to be a place we go to get filled up and educated, in order to go out into the world and give it away. “Freely you have received, freely give”. The original twelve were only in “church” for a few short years, then they were sent out into the world to reach the lost. Where would you be now if someone hadn’t told you about Christ? So make a decision, are you a doer of the word? Or a bench warmer?

I really have a heart to see the church brought back to it's original intent. The church was never intended to be just a "place of worship" that it is today. The purpose of the church is to build up and equip the body to go out into the world and preach the gospel, with signs following. The church was never intended to be a place for people to gather once a week to "look religious". Church is not meant to be "fire insurance". I hope to be able to reach the body of the local churches in towns all over the northwest and even farther, to bring them away from the self serving mind set, and turn their hearts back to evangelizing the world - to reach the lost. I know that by going out into the world I have the potential to reach tens of thousands, but how many more souls could be saved by "descipling" the churches to go into the world as well? That is my vision, to see the entire body reaching out, not just a few individuals. To see every believer actually living by the word of God. We have so many opportunities to reach out every day, in a grocery store, in the doctors’ office, at the dmv, or just walking down the street. I have seen people healed, I have seen people get up out of wheel chairs, I have seen broken bones healed, cancer disappear, damaged vision and sight restored, I have seen prophesies come to pass, and so many other miracles of God.

Jesus said all these things we can do, and even greater. All we have to do is believe, the rest is up to Him. If we do our part, He will do his. I have decided to do my part, how about you?

If you are interested in having us come to your church, email us HERE

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The Flat Tire

32 miles out of Winnemucca, Nv we blew a tire on the 5th wheel. I got out with Derrick to look at it and while he was getting it off the trailer I saw a big motorhome coming and told him to not stick his feet out too far. The motorhome pulled over in front of us and I saw a cool magnet on the back of his tow vehicle. It was a yellow ribbon for the soldiers and it had a cross coming up through it. I half jokingly told Derrick that God must have sent the guy to check on us. The guy came walking up and said "Only 1 God (our truck license plate is nly1god) I like that." I looked at the guy and he had a huge brass belt buckle that said "Jesus First". I think God really did send someone to check on us.

St. Maries, Idaho

We arrived in St. Maries, Id yesterday afternoon. The trip went real smooth. We did have a blow out of a trailer tire near McDermett, Nv, but thankfully we had a good spare.
Michelle's parents live a couple miles down the road and are on the river levee. The waters are real high right now and are above flood levels. They have sprung a leak in their driveway from the river water. So far they are ok though. Please keep them in your prayers.

The view from the back porch. The water eventually came up higher and was right against the dock.

Michaela and Papa fishing in the flood waters.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

It's Almost Time

We will be leaving our "hometown" of Fernley, Nv on Monday, May 19th, 2008. We are heading north to St. Maries, Idaho. Michelle's parents are there and we plan on helping them with some work that needs done on their land. The plan is to leave on July 14th after her son leaves from his summer visit. To where? We have no idea yet. We are waiting for God to tell us. Check back often for updates.
Our setup