Romans 1:20

"For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse."

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Yes, We Made it Back Alive!!!

Finally!!!  A blogpost after all these months!  I am pleased to announce that Andrew and I are back in South Africa, and settling in well!!!  Praise the Lord for His kindness to us!!!

We are just so happy here in Pretoria, South Africa!  As we speak, Andrew is busy teaching a "Fundamentals of the Faith" session on the Attributes of God for 30 new people at the church.  We pretty much have hit the ground running here at Grace Fellowship, which is part of the reason I have not written sooner.

Here's what you need to know!

  1. We are settled in our new house, have painted some walls and are pretty much furnished now, through people generously giving their unneeded furniture, or gifts of money to buy what we need.  The home we rent is magnificent, and so super spacious!  We continually have guests in our home because we have an extra two bedrooms to host people in.  Of the four weeks we've been in the house, we've had guests for two of them.  The only downside to living where we are is that there is no way to get ADSL as the telephone co. has not yet installed lines to our area, which is a few minutes out of town.  This means we only have internet using cellphone towers which makes it slow and expensive to do anything substantial on the Net.  Please bear with us as we work on the best solution for this!
  2. We have a car!  Andrew posted a picture on Facebook, but it's a Honda Civic 2002 sedan, white, and comfortable!  We are very happy with it!
  3. Andrew has already preached twice, and is already growing in it at a rapid pace, thanks to all the feedback from friends and of course, Joel James!  He also runs the Young Adults ministry where we have about 20-30 people each week, which has just started meeting at our home on Friday nights.  Andrew has begun a series on Evangelism, and will then move on to prayer...  Talk about convicting topics!  But his messages are being well received, and the group is growing well.
  4. I have joined the music team, playing guitar and singing, once every second week!  This is such a blessing to me and I've been getting a whole lot better now that I'm playing more regularly.  The musicians here are very gifted and I am enjoying learning all the new songs!
  5. I just photographed my Brother-in-law's wedding last weekend and can't wait to post some pictures!  You'll just have to be patient until we get a more reliable internet connection etc!
  6. Lord Willing, my mom and little brother will be coming up to visit me next weekend and I will begin to do something I've never done in my life before!  Reupholster some couches!  The ones we have been given require a more permanent covering to a white sheet!  So with my mom's help we will document the adventure and let you know how it goes!
  7. I now have a blackberry which at least allows me to check facebook, new messages and receive emails all the time, so I will be more prompt in my replies!
  8. I just finished my first week of Counseling course with Wayne Mack here at Grace Fellowship!  He spent the week teaching on "Christian Life Issues from Pilgrim's Progress".  What a great class!!!
Anyway, that's all for now!  I'll try to upload pics as soon as possible!

Thanks for Looking!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

A Day Trip to Sacramento, and then off to Napa for Halloween

So this is mainly a photography and history post!  Sacramento is such a beautiful city, and Andrew and I had such a great time exploring it!  The first stop was the State Capitol Building.

Andrew and I spotted this gorgeous Catholic Church and decided to see if we could go inside.  It is beautifully detailed and so luxurious!

First, Andrew and I picked up a Starbucks and then went to check out the outside of the Governor's Mansion on H street.  Below is the mansion which is now a museum.  It was built in 1877, with 30 rooms, and the last Governor to live in it was Ronald Reagan!  It is quite exquisite, so much detail...

Ahh, beautiful Historic Old Downtown Sacramento!  I LOVE this place!!!  Andrew and I spent the afternoon wandering in and out of stores and exploring these georgeous buildings dating all the way back to the 1850's!

Then we made the 1 hour drive to Napa Valley to spend our last weekend with the Van Straatens.  Anton took the whole lot of us to various great photography spots at some of the wineries where we were all having a go at some pictures.  It was a really great outing!

Thanks for looking!!!

A Halloween Weekend in Napa

 Oh, the beauty of Napa Valley in Northern California!  This was our last trip to visit the Van Straaten Family, and we got to stay with them for a few days.  We also got to visit our friends the Whitlocks and have lunch with them on Sunday after church.  And, of course, we drove a round a lot to soak in the scenery for the last time!  We will sorely miss our friends!!!  Farewell!!!

Thanks for looking!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Fall is falling!

Jer 5:24 They do not say in their hearts, 'Let us fear the LORD our God, who gives the rain in its season, the autumn rain and the spring rain, and keeps for us the weeks appointed for the harvest.' 

My favorite season of the year has begun!  With cooler weather, darker mornings and of course the Fall colors on all the trees!  I am so excited!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

The Woman's Fall Event

Stephanie Niednagel doing announcements
Grace Community Church really knows how to do Woman's events!!!  The highlight of the fall event is definitely the woman's Gospel choir and some of the solos that get done, absolutely world class!  But far more than all of this is the focus on the Word of God.  A large group of women come for a whole day to sit under the teaching for the Bible and to fellowship with one another.  What a privilege to be able to attend!  The events are always beautifully orchestrated and so efficient.  I have learned so much from just watching the excellence with which things are done here at Grace.  It is sad to know that this is my last conference, but I am so grateful for the opportunities I have had to be here and join in!

Rosie Martinez - Guest speaker

The Gospel Choir with Logan Carr as director


The speaker this year was on of the Grace Church Missionaries - Rosie Martinez.  she spoke on the Book of Habakkuk and really opened our eyes to understand this book which very few people take the time to read!  She has such a sweet manner about her and I really enjoyed learning in the sessions.

This is the basic outline of the book: Habakkuk, the prophet cry's out to God for justice - the people of Judah are so rebellious and sinful that he calls on God to put a stop to their wickedness.  God replies and lets Habakkuk in on His plan for justice - God is going to use the Chaldeans (an evil and fearful pagan nation) as a tool of judgement against Judah's rebellion.  Instead of being comforted, Habakkuk is horrified that God would use an even worse nation to bring judgement on them.  He struggles with this in his heart and cries out to God asking why He would do such a thing.  God replies by saying that the Chaldeans too will will receive their judgement for rising up against Judah.  Habakkuk then has to struggle through his understanding of who God is and comes to realise that even when God's holy nation is devastated by this horrendous attack, God's people are to worship Him for who He is, despite Him removing all earthly blessings.

Habakkuk finishes his prayer to God with this beautiful statement: "I hear, and my body trembles; my lips quiver at the sound; rottenness enters into my bones; my legs tremble beneath me. Yet I will quietly wait for the day of trouble to come upon people who invade us. Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food, the flock be cut off from the fold and there be no herd in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD; I will take joy in the God of my salvation. GOD, the Lord, is my strength; he makes my feet like the deer's; he makes me tread on my high places. (Hab 3:16-19)