Saturday, June 28, 2008

A Night of Music

James' Mom has been studying the Cello the past few months. Last night we were invited to attend her first cello recital.

This is her and her teacher, Carol. It is so much fun to listen to them play the deep, soulful notes!

One fun part of playing the cello is being a part of an orchestra. Pastor Ari, the associate pastor at Calvario, leads the group, who practice on Saturdays. Every year at Christmas they play for a Christmas Cantata.

We enjoy having our children exposed to this kind of music. It is so neat to see them get excited to play along with the musicians with their imaginary instruments.

We have told Daniel to start praying about what instrument he would like to study. When he turns 7 he is looking forward to starting lessons.

Earlier this week, he picked up James' guitar and tried to get his little hands to hold a cord! It is so neat to see them develop a love for music.

"Let everything that has breath, praise the Lord!"

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Happy Birthday James & Welcome Rachel!

Yesterday, we celebrated two exciting events: James 32nd birthday and Rachel's arrival here in Brazil.

We started the morning bright and early. Daniel wanted to make breakfast in bed for James. Eggs on toast with fresh squeezed orange juice were on the menu. We thought it would be fun to join Daddy in bed for breakfast!

After breakfast, we headed to the airport to meet Aunt Rachel. She is coming to visit during her summer break from teaching.
Daniel and Hannah have been counting down the days till Rachel arrived.

To welcome Rachel, James planned for us to wait further back and for him to hold a sign using his childho
od name for Rachel.

It was a fun surprise
for Rachel, she said she has always wanted someone to hold a sign for her!

For dinner that night, we celebrated both events with Brazilian Pizza and a Crazy Cake. It was a great day!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Seeing God Work

It is very exciting right now around Nova Vida. Last Sunday Night, June 8th, we heard the testimonies of seven candidates for baptism.

It was so neat to see how God called each of them; saving from sin and adopting them into His family. After their salvation and a discipleship period, they each went through a 12 week new members class.

This Sunday Night we had three ladies and four teenagers that were baptized. We are praising the Lord for His work in their lives. To see them sharing the gospel with neighbors, family members, employees... it is exciting!

We had the baptism at Calvary Baptist Church, the mother church. Two women from Calvary were also baptized. As we sang songs of the cross and reflected on who Christ is and what He has done for undeserving sinners, I was moved to tears. "For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die but God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." Romans 5:8 I am so thankful that Christ died for me, purchasing me from the slave market of sin, making me set apart, holy, a priest.

After the baptism, they were each presented a certificate of membership and welcomed into the local church.

Pastor Alberto preached a message on What Baptism is Not. Sharing that baptism is not part of salvation. It is simply an act of obedience. Through baptism a person is identifying themselves as a follower of Christ.

We had MANY visitors. Family and friends of those who were baptized. Most of the visitors were unsaved and heard the gospel clearly presented.

After the message, we had the Lord's Supper. It was exciting to see these newly baptized people partake of their first communion!

The whole evening was so full of blessings and encouragement. One of the young ladies that was baptized is in need of a kidney transplant. On Friday she was so weak that she could not get out of bed. Yet here she was on Sunday night, walking into the cold baptismal waters to tell all of her unsaved family and friends that she loves the Lord with all of her heart!

It is often easy to become discouraged in ministry. Sunday night was such an encouragement. God IS working in the hearts of men and women across the earth. He is calling them to salvation and to follow Him and they are answering!

Friday, June 06, 2008

Our 10th Anniversary

June 6, 1998
Jeffersonville, Indiana

Today James and I celebrated 10 years of marriage.

It is so interesting to see how both of us have changed over the years. Balancing each other out in areas we were once opposites. It is a blessing to look back on the Lord's work in both of our lives. We both agree that the other has grown and changed. Our goal is to walk worthy of the Lord. Magnifying Him with every thought, word, and deed.

Phil and Mary Ruth took care of the kids for us so we had about a day and a half to ourselves. It was fun to be on our own for a little while;
looking back on past memories and praying for the future.

We spent the day looking around various parts of Curitiba. We went through some used furniture stores looking for an old treasure, hidden in the dust. (We never found one!)
Eating at a cute little cafe & bistro.

We went to a mall that is the old train station for Curitiba.

We took a tour through the train museum, and did some window shopping. It was a great day.