Sunday, January 27, 2008

What a Day

Yesterday was a day filled with lots and lots of stuff. So here goes!

I had a quarterly homeschool meeting to go to over in Santa Clarita (a 3 hour drive one way from our home) and I had asked my husband to go with me since I wasn't getting a whole night's sleep the night before. He agreed. Our journey bega
n at 7:30 a.m.

We made plans to meet up with our friends, Delmas and Laurie, and leave our kids with their kids while the 4 of us went to the meeting. The kids went off and had a blast all day by themselves (for those of you wondering, all but Phyllip and Tyler were basically full grown).
The 4 of us went to the meeting. From there we had pit stops to make here and there on the way to my hair appointment. While I got my hair done the other 3 went to lunch. After that we stopped by the grocery store to get food for dinner. Then we went to the equipment rental store to rent a "snake" to clean out Delmas' drains because their house was flooding from all of the rain we've gotten recently. Funny thing about the "snake" was that it didn't fit in the back end of Delmas' car. So it sat in the middle seat with us girls. It actually got belted in with a seatbelt! Go figure that one! Anyway, we made plans to take the kids up to the snow in the foothills above Los Angeles shortly after we all got back to Delmas and Laurie's house and after the guys were finished using the "snake."
These 2 pictures were taken from our house today. The winter storm brought lots of the wet stuff, fog and cold. I can't wait to find out how much rain we got.

Notice that you can't see anything beyond the houses. That's how low the clouds are. Typically we can see for many miles. Our mountains are hid by the storm.

I need to put a side note in here. Delmas and Laurie breed Chijajuahs (is that how you spell it? I don't know but it's the little dog from the Taco Bell commercials!) One of their dogs had puppies a few days ago. Below is one of the puppies.

Well, everybody forgot the puppies were outside in the cold. Eventually, they were brought in only to discover that the puppy above was extremely cold and lethargic. So I took the puppy and started trying to warm it up. We worked and worked to warm her up. When Laurie looked at the puppy we discovered that she had a cleft pallet and her face was deformed on one side. She was very sick and her momma had rejected her. So we tried feeding her, but to no avail. She
eventually died. *sigh* *sad face* Look how little she was! (Note: these pictures were taken before she died.)

Here's Tyler standing on LeeAnn's (one of Laurie's kids) back at her request. Her back was hurting and she said it would make her feel better. He wasn't about to let her down!

It started raining buckets and buckets while we ate dinner and 2 of the older kids decided to jump in the pool. Crazy! We tried to talk them out o
f it but it didn't work as you can see!

The spots on the picture are raindrops. That's how hard it was raining.

We ended up not going to the snow because the drains took longer than expected. But we got to spend the day with friends that we hadn't seen in quite a while. It was very much a spontaneous day and we sure enjoyed it!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Enjoy the Moment...

That was what Walter and I did today while Lyndsey was having her piano lesson.

Lyndsey takes piano lessons at a church that also has a christian school. Her lesson is at a time when all the school kids are having recess.

Phyllip happened to make friends with a couple of the boys there last week. He had a blast!

Today the whole family was with me and both boys decided to hop out of the van and go play with the kids on the playground.
They instantly were in their element. They were having so much fun playing football. Now Phyllip's version of football does not include running to the right end zone but who's paying attention anyway! *smile*

We had so much fun just watching them playing today. I was frustrated with myself for not having brought my camera to capture the moment. *frown*

I decided to go inside and sit in on Lyndsey's lesson.

And then it happened! The school principal informed me that the boys couldn't play with the school kids on the playground because of liability issues. *frown* So I had to go tell them. Needless to say, my tenderhearted one (I'll let you figure out who that is) just about started crying. My heart was sad for them, but there wasn't anything I could do.

Oh, well. At least Walter and I were able to sit back and enjoy them even if for just a few moments.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Missing You Sister...

This one is for my sister, Nancy.

I miss not being able to see you and your family in person very often.

Just a few pictures to remind you of our last visit together!

Disregard my major bad hair on this one (remember, we just got done swimming)!

We had so much fun. Vacations go by so quickly and then they're memories! These are great memories!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


Those of you who know me know that I don't like to be in the spotlight. Blending in with the wallpaper suits me just fine.

Equally, I don't like confrontation (though I don't know too many people who do, either). I will do just about anything to get out of a confrontational situation.

I have a question that is at the forefront of my mind lately. Why is it so difficult for me to humble myself? I have pondered that a lot. The only thing I can figure out is it is my pride. I don't like it when someone has aught against me. I really don't like feeling division between myself and someone else. But my pride gets in the way and I choose not to do anything about it (you know, there's an elephant in the living room and everyone chooses to ignore it instead of get rid of it).

I found myself in a position recently where it was necessary for me to humble myself (I was so nervous about it that I was shaking and almost to the point of crying; that's how much I dislike confrontation). The Lord wouldn't let me alone about this situation. So I prayed and asked the Lord for wisdom and understanding and much humbleness in order to repair the crack in a relationship with a fellow sister in Christ.

PRAISE THE LORD!!!! He worked everything out! You see, initially I wanted to handle this situation my way. But I was reminded gently by the Lord that my way was the wrong way. I needed to do it His way. And when I did, He worked everything out for me.

Life's lessons aren't always comfortable or easy to handle. But when you seek the Lord in all things (especially when you determine that you must be humble) He works things out for you.

Friday, January 18, 2008


I was laying in bed this morning and the sunlight was shining down the hallway into my bedroom.

Then it hit me. The song in our church hymnal called "Sunlight" started ringing in my head. The Lord told me, "Just like the sunlight is shining into the windows of your house, the light of my Son is shining in your soul." Wow!

The sunlight always puts a smile on my face. How much more the Sonlight should put a smile on my face!

So I got out my hymnal and read the verses to the song. It goes like this:

I wandered in the shades of night,
Till Jesus came to me,
And with the sunlight of His love
Bid all my darkness flee.

Tho' clouds may gather in the sky,
And billows round me roll,
However dark the world may be,
I've sunlight in my soul.

While walking in the light of God,
I sweet communion find;
I press with holy vigor on,
And leave the world behind.

I cross the wide extended fields,
I journey o'er the plain,
And in the sunlight of His love
I reap the golden grain.

Soon I shall see Him as He is,
The light that came to me,
Behold the brightness of His face,
Thro'out eternity.

Sunlight, sunlight in my soul today,
Sunlight, sunlight all along the way;
Since the Saviour found me,
Took away my sin,
I have had the sunlight of His love within.

I hope the Sonlight is shining bright in you today! :)

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Beaming with Joy!

Our pastor's wife started a Ladies Prayer Breakfast once a month.

The first one was 2 days ago. It was wonderful. Five ladies showed up. We shared some of our most pressing prayer requests with each other. We laughed, cried, and prayed together. It was a wonderful time of fellowship around Christ.

So tonight I was talking with one of the ladies at church who was at the breakfast the other day. I asked her about her specific prayer request. I am ecstatic to report that God is already answering our prayers!!!! It was so wonderful to talk to her!

Dear one that I talked to tonight, if you read this, let me tell you that words cannot describe how happy and pleased and honored I am that I am able share in not only your heartaches but also in your answered prayers. You are such a blessing to me and my family!

Praise the Lord!!!! He is so AWESOME!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

It's Always An Adventure When...

I am out with my pastor's wife!

We don't get to go out by ourselves very much but when we do it is ALWAYS an adventure! Why? Because I am the instigator and she is the instigated and we work very well that way!

To find out our latest adventure click here.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Here Am I, Lord

As some of you know, we are praying about becoming missionaries to Madagascar.

We have been praying about this since July, 2007. Walter and I will be taking a survey trip to the country leaving March 30 and returning April 18. We are awaiting confirmation from the Lord. Our decision will be made when we get home. We are incredibly excited about this!

However, it is very humbling to think that God Almighty would want to use someone like me and my family on a foreign field. I describe myself as a wallflower; someone perfectly happy blending in with the crowd not making myself stick out.

But who are we and why are we so special? Why does God want to use us? We are 40 somethings; we don't have a Bible college education; etc. I don't know and maybe I will never know the answers until I get to Heaven. The only thing I can think of is that we've told the Lord, "Here am I, Lord. Send me." And now He wants to see if we mean business; if we are truly available. Because, you see, so many of us say that we're available but are we, really?

I think of a song that West Coast Baptist College sang some years ago. It's called "Here Am I."

Here am I, I will go.
I will reach the lost untold;
I will give the Lord control.
I will tell them of the crimson flow.

So many lost and dying
In this world today.
Have you heard their crying
Or do you turn away?
The harvest now is plenteous,
But the laborers are few.
God needs some willing vessels to be used.


Is it too late for caring? Does Jesus really save?
Are we truly praying for the blind to find their way?
Little children are falling into a burning Hell.
Will anyone heed the calling to go and tell?

For the Saviour died on a rugged cross;
He thought of me when He counted the cost.
How can I say that I love Him, if I don't reply?


Whenever I hear or even think of this song, it brings tears to my eyes for I know that I have many wasted and missed opportunities down through the years in telling people that "JESUS SAVES." I think of the people not only in my own little mission field here where I live but now also on the other side of the world in a 4th world (Yes, you read it correctly. There are only 2 countries that have that classification and Madagascar is one of them) country. We must be about our Father's business no matter where He puts us.

I have known for many years that soulwinning is extremely important. But that was mainly head knowledge and not heart knowledge. You see, I would go out soulwinning (when I did go) out of obligation. Ya know, my Christian duty. But I see the world differently these days. When I look at people I see souls now (for the most part) and I wonder if they are saved or not.

We, here in America, have been blessed with great churches all across this land that preach the Gospel and the whole Bible. We have so much in this great country that we live in. So much that "things" get in the way and cloud our minds. Too many people don't need God. They are doing just fine. In fact, yesterday, Walter and I were soulwinning and we met a woman that was a Buddhist. When asked if she knew for sure if she was going to heaven her reply was, "I'm not worried about it." That is so sad! She wasn't really interested in talking to us but she did take our Gospel tracht with the plan of salvation on it.

But what about the people in other countries that really don't have the opportunity to hear the Gospel? The Bible says (paraphrasing) "and how shall they hear, except they be sent." It might just be that God wants my family to be one that is "sent" instead of being a sender.

I hope that whoever reads this will ponder the words to this song and will allow the Lord to work in their hearts and lives in a greater way than ever before.

Saturday, January 12, 2008


The reason so many people move to the desert is finally revealed.

The weather is incredible! We have finally hit the 70's in temps. And not just 70. It's close to 80 here today!

We are basking in the beauty of the warm sunshine today and lovin' it! It's perfect. Not too hot and not too cold. If you would have asked me a couple of days ago about the weather, I would have said it's too cold. But not today!

It is glorious today. I kinda wonder if heaven will be like this. Just something to ponder!

Have a great day! I know I am! :)

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

What Not to Do When Out on Visitation for Your Church

Last night my family and I went to church for our soulwinning and visitation night.

Pastor wanted us to make visits. My partners were my daughter, Lyndsey, and another little girl named Jahzell.

Pastor had given me 2 teenage girls to visit and encourage them to come to church. One of them lived just down the street from the church and the other visit was way up in the cove. I decided to go there first. I have to tell you that the Lord had prompted me to go to the cove first but as you will read, I didn't listen. Big mistake!

Upon finding the house I parked the car. Lyndsey proceeds to hop out of the van only to find a stray dog wandering around in the yard of the home we were going to. It was a pit bull mix of some sort. So I told her to get back in the van. I called my husband and then decided that I would be the one to get out of the van to see if the dog was friendly.

So I turned the van on again and tried to get a little closer to the house. I saw a parking spot about 15 feet up ahead. Now you have to realize that I was going to park between a tow truck and another car. I thought there was enough room until I got closer. There wasn't and the dog was wandering close to where I was.

I saw a car coming up behind me and I decided to just wait and let him go around me. Bigger mistake! All of a sudden SPOTLIGHTS came on! Then I looked down and realized that I didn't have my seatbelt on because, of course, I was just moving the van a few feet. Then I realized that the girls don't have their belts on, either. I didn't quite know what to do. Uh oh! The red and blue lights started and I was toast! I put the car in "park" and rolled down the window and told the girls we would be a while as now the police want to talk to me! Might I say that I just a teensy bit nervous!

The police pulled up beside me and told me to "Get your car out of the middle of the road!" He really wasn't very nice. Now when I think of police officers, I think of my husband (usually nice). After all, he has told me that 90% of every traffic stop is your attitude with the officer. This guy didn't even give me a chance to be nice to him before he was quite rude to me. Anyway, I apologized to him and told him I would move immediately (to which he promptly left).

Can you imagine my story to the police about what I was doing? "I'm sorry officer. I'm from Bible Baptist Church and we are out visiting people in the neighborhood. I was looking for a parking spot and then there was this dog that I wasn't sure about. I thought I would get a little bit closer to see if the dog was nice but then realized that there wasn't enough room for my van to fit. Then you pulled up behind me, etc.!" I'm not even sure I can see in my head what his reaction would have been!

I turned the van around and parked again. This time I got out of the van and the dog came towards me. He still did not appear friendly (actually made me quite nervous) and I decided not to take any chances and we left. First visit - no contact.

So I drive to the next home which was way up in the cove. Obviously, it was dark outside. I finally find the right street and start looking for the right house number. I couldn't find it and turned around and looked for it coming down the hill the second time. Still couldn't find it but happened, once again, upon a police officer who was parked on the same street I was on. I passed him and went too far. I turned around again, drove past the officer up the hill again very slowly so as to find the correct house to stop at. My eyes aren't that great for seeing house numbers at night so I was dependent on Lyndsey's eyes to help me find the house. No such luck. We couldn't find the house. I decided to stop looking as I figured that after going up and down the same street 3 times with the police watching me, he would think I was casing the street to rob someone's house!

So we left and went back to the church completely unsuccessful in trying to encourage people to come to church.

When we got back to the church I told my police officer husband what had happened and, well you know, he laughed at me! I'm sure glad he thought it was funny!

So the moral to this story is to listen to the leading of the Holy Spirit because if I would have gone to the cove first most likely none of this would have happened!

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Is It Alright To Panic When...

you ask your husband to run 2 small errands and he's gone for over 2 hours and he doesn't take his cell phone to let you know where he's at and it's very dark outside??????

Yesterday I asked Walter if he would go and pay 2 bills (1 of which was at a bank) for me. It should have been a very menial task. You know, only gone for 30 minutes or so.

After about an hour I realized that he wasn't home. I wasn't sure what to think. Maybe he ran into someone he knows and started talking and lost track of time.

As the 2nd hour passed I started thinking that maybe while he was in the bank someone decided to hold up the bank and now he was a hostage! I know, I know. How my mind plays tricks on me! Anyway, I kept looking at the clock and started wondering if I should call the police and ask if there was a hold up at the bank (can you believe my incredibly active mind?). I thought I better wait for a little while longer.

Finally, my wonderful husband drove up and came in the house. Whew!!!!! Was I ever relieved. I asked him where he was and he told me that he finally realized what was wrong with our van. It needed new brakes! So he stopped at a shop in town and had the brakes fixed. So I proceeded to tell him that I was worried about him and I was just about ready to call the police.

Having been a police officer himself, he thought it was so funny! I, of course, was relieved and upset all at the same time. I made sure to let him know that I would appreciate it if he would take his phone with him from now on.

All this to say that I know my husband loves me. He didn't want me to know that the brakes were completely shot in the front. He just wanted to get it fixed as I have to drive to Newport Beach this week. What a guy!!!!!

Monday, January 7, 2008

My (Not So Secret) Admirer

Walter and I have been friends with the Sundquist family since long before we all got married. For those of you who don't know, that's well over 20 years now. Actually, we don't consider ourselves just friends. We are more like family.

Their 5th child, Andrew, has taken a huge liking (is that how you spell it?) to me.

It all started about 3 years ago when the Sundquists came down to the desert for vacation. Then we went up to WA for vacation a few weeks later.

We visited with them in their home and Andrew wanted to monopolize all of my time for only "Andrew and Aunt Rhonda" time. I was very flattered.

As the vacation continued I realized Andrew's birthday was coming up so I had a brilliant idea to have our picture taken together and put it in a frame and give it to him as a present!

That turned out to be the best gift I could've given to him! He loved it so much. He slept with it; he took it in the car with him; it went everywhere. Hence the following picture!

Fast forward to May, 2007. The Sundquist family decided to come to the desert (among other things) for a visit again. Again, I had the brilliant idea to have our picture taken together, put in another picture frame, and give it to him for another birthday present. Presto! Bingo! Can you say that I hit the jackpot twice! Who can ever be so lucky? He loved it again!

I must mention that the last time I asked these pictures are up on his dresser where he can see them at all times (makes my heart go 'pitter patter'). *smile, sigh*

Fast forward to tonight. I got a phone call from Andrew's mom telling me that he wanted to talk to me. So Andrew and I talked for a few minutes and then Tammie got back on the phone again.

Tammie said that Andrew was asking her which of these two pictures she liked the best. She told him and then he took them back to his room where he proceeded to sit on his bed and gaze at them (I am still so flattered today almost 3 years later!). Then he decided he HAD to talk to me. So Tammie dialed my number and when I got on the phone, he asked his mom to leave the room so he could talk to me in private. So adorably cute!

I haven't yet figured out what it is that he sees in me that makes him like me so much, but I'll take it while I can get it because there's coming a day when this will all be just memories!

Happy Birthday...

to Lyndsey! She turned the BIG 17 yesterday!

(In case you don't know, Lyndsey is on the right.)

Where does the time go? It seems like a few days ago Walter and I had welcomed her into the world and into our lives. And now here she is almost all grown up.

Lyndsey had a slumber party last Friday night with a few of her friends. We (Mom was included, too) played lots of games, ate ice cream pie, watched a chick flick, and stayed up til 3 am (the afore mentioned Mom DID NOT stay up til 3 am, though).

Pictured up above (in left to right order) are Megan, Ciarra, Kayla, Sarah, Grace, the birthday girl, MacKenzie, and our pastor's wife, Sileena.

Up above is Megan, Sarah, the birthday girl, LeeAnn, MacKenzie, and Kayla on top.

Here they are again - Kayla, Sarah, MacKenzie, Megan, and the birthday girl on their laps!

A winter storm decided to move through the valley that night and it rained "cats and dogs" all night. It caused a power outage at 3 am and sounded our security alarm. Needless to say the girls were scared out of their wits! Shortly after that, the girls decided it was time to sleep!

Lyndsey had a great time and is SO HAPPY to now be 17!

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Looking Back at 2007...

2007 was a wonderful year for us. Come to think of it, I can't remember a year that wasn't wonderful!

There have been so many blessings in our lives I don't really know where to begin. So I will just touch on a few.

The biggest and best blessing is knowing that my sins have been washed in the blood of my Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. Of course, my "Mr. Wonderful" and my children are the 2nd best blessing in my life. And then there are all of the little everyday blessings God gives us that I know I usually take for granted (air to breathe, food on the table, a nice home, nice clothes, etc.).

I would like to reflect on a spiritual blessing that started last year and continues into 2008.

Our pastor was able to attend Pastor's School at First Baptist Church, Hammond, Indiana, this last March. The theme was "With Christ in the School of Prayer." Shortly after he got back he started a series on prayer on Sunday nights and the series is still continuing. Wow! I never knew the Bible had so much specific details on the subject of prayer! Through these messages and really reflecting and meditating on Scripture I have been so blessed. The Lord has begun to reveal Himself to me like never before. I can remember sitting in church for many years and hearing visiting preachers, evangelists, missionaries, and even our pastor talk about having a close, intimate, personal relationship with the Lord. I desired to have it but had never achieved it. Prayer truly is an incredibly important ingredient in our relationship with the heavenly Father. One of the subtopics on prayer that has really stuck out to me is praising God and how much He desires each one of us to praise Him both in the good times and in the hard times. I hadn't ever really done that before. I have started to do that and wow, what a difference it makes in my prayer life. I can sense God's presence during that "secret time" in my "secret place." Now, I haven't "arrived" yet in my relationship with God but I am beginning to really "know" Him.

During Sunday school last Sunday, Pastor was teaching on 1 John 4:7,8 - "Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love." He pointed out that we cannot love like God if we don't know God. Those of us that are saved are born of God but do we know God. I can look back on 2007 and say that I have begun to "know" God. It's GREAT!

I am so thankful that the Lord is patient and longsuffering with me. I truly don't deserve all of the goodness he shows to me. I really am a work in progress for the Lord!

I really look forward to what God has in store for us in 2008!