Wednesday, November 25, 2009


"Salamat" (thank you) was the first word we learned in Filipino.
Today, on Thanksgiving Day, our hearts are filled with thanksgiving to our God and Father!
We're so thankful for His grace and mercy through Christ;
For health and strength;
For our precious family and friends;
For His faithful provision for every need;
For you, those who have supported, encouraged, and prayed for us through all the many changes this year has brought.

We received a sweet card of encouragement from one of you yesterday, the first night we spent in our own home.
The words were such a blessing at the end of a weary day of moving:
"He is our Great Shepherd and has given His Word: I will go with you all the way."

Happy Thanksgiving!

There have been some delays in getting internet connection at our new apartment, so please bear with us as we take longer to reply to your emails, and as our blog postings may be not quite as frequent for a time.
Thank you!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

get moving

Now that we are all (thankfully!) healthy again, we've made progress getting moved into our new home.
Today we spent much of the day there

mopping floors,

making beds...

...unpacking our boxes, and making more dust (Mark installed towel racks in the bathrooms, a messy project when dealing with cement and tile walls. But he did a beautiful job!)

We finished up with a celebratory first meal there tonight,
complete with delicious Pizza Hut pizza!
We hope to complete our move tomorrow, just in time for Thanksgiving.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

another beautiful bunch

It's been a rough week as 4 out of 5 of us was hit hard with the flu. Meanwhile it fell on Mark's shoulders to bear the load of many details for our move.

Sweet Filipino co-workers heard of our illness and appeared at the door today bearing this beautiful bunch of fruit - bananas and a papaya - as a get-well gift.

What an encouragement! In our weakness God proves Himself strong through the ministry of His people.

Monday, November 16, 2009

a pleasant inn

"Our Father refreshes us on the journey with some pleasant inns, but will not encourage us to mistake them for home."
-C.S. Lewis

Here's a glimpse into our 'pleasant inn!' It's small, but we look forward to making it a cozy spot to relax and to share with others.
Below is a view from the entry area, looking into the living room, dining area and kitchen. The back door leads to a cement pad where there is an outdoor sink and where our washing machine and clothesline will be. The stair case leads up to the bedrooms, and at the foot of the stairs is a bathroom.

Elise, Michael and Amy excitedly move some of the first items in.

This is a shot from the landing at the top of the stairs. Michael stands in his doorway, and the girls in theirs. Michael's room is 6'x13'; plenty wide for a twin bed!
To the right of the girl's door is the second bathroom, and behind me is the master bedroom. We'll add photos of that later - after we've done some moving in.
Each bedroom has a good-sized built-in wardrobe which is great for storage.

Here's the upstairs bathroom. Notice the floor - it's easy to clean. Just throw a bucket of water on it and mop it toward the drain!

We're slowly getting moved in. The stomach flu has struck Michael and Amy (so far!) so the process will take a little longer than we hoped.

Thanks so much for all of your prayers for us. We are very thankful for a brand-new, clean and close place to live. Once the flu is gone, we'll be ready for visitors! Come on over to our 'pleasant inn!'

Thursday, November 12, 2009

beautiful bunch

I never knew that a bunch of keys could be so beautiful.
Yesterday Mark signed a rental agreement and was given this bunch of keys to the 3 bedroom apartment that will be our new home. We are SO thankful, SO delighted to have a place of our own! THANK you to all of you who have prayed. We'll share more details and some photos soon!

"From one man He made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and He determined the times set for them
and the exact places where they should live."
Acts 17:26, NIV

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

fellowship in the Word

Barbara has the privilege of getting together with fellow-workers on a weekly basis to share in a Bible study focused on the life and ministry of Paul.

It's been a sweet time of beginning to grow new friendships, with opportunities to pray for one another and to respond together to the Word of God.

"...that I may be encouraged together with you while among you, each of us by the other's faith, both yours and mine." Romans 1:12

Monday, November 9, 2009


Amy and Elise's middle school basketball team played their first game against a Filipino school on Friday.
The school system in the Philippines is different than in the States.
Children go to Elementary
School through 6th grade,
and then on to High School for grades 7 through 10.

So their team was playing against girls who were somewhat older (and more experienced!) than they, but their team worked together beautifully.

Elise, # 11

And Amy, # 8

Elise makes a free throw

Amy is a point guard and got worked hard running about 3/4 of the game.

The school has a covered court, perfect for playing in a hot climate. (It's awfully nice for the spectators, too, to be in the shade!)

Go Team!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

crocodile park

A few weeks ago we got to visit a zoo-like place called the Crocodile Park. It had a variety of animals including birds, snakes, monkeys, lizards, and of course, crocodiles! It was a neat place to visit.

Daddy holding an albino python...Yikes!

Michael being eaten by a crocodile.

There were TONS of crocodiles that were kept in multiple pens, divided by age.

We went into the habitat where they kept these large lizard like creatures. They were slightly bigger than iguanas, and very timid. Almost all of them were hiding. There was a path with benches along it, where you could sit and watch the lizards. We were all a little on edge from being fenced in with kind of scary looking reptiles! Daddy made a move to sit down on one of the benches, when one of the lizards dashed out from beneath the bench and into a bush, scaring all of us out of our wits! We kept a sharp eye out for any other ones that might startle us. =)

Come visit us and we'll take you there to see lots of other cool animals too!

By Elise

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

perfect balance

Thy will be done.
How's My Driving?
KEEP Distance!

God's sovereignty and man's responsibility in perfect balance.