Sunday, August 21, 2011

It's the Cat Lady Again

Well, I trapped three more kittens this week.  One black, two gray, and I thought I had them all, when sure enough...a fourth one showed up on our porch, part of the same litter.  But my traps were already full.  Had them fixed and returned to us, healed for a couple of days, and now they are out roaming the campground, hopefully keeping our varmints under control.  They may be too young yet.  I guess they are about 4 months old.  My question is, when will it ever stop?  When will we quit having kittens?  I'm trying to catch the older ones who are producing these litters, and sending them to the "farm".  I just can't handle animals getting hurt, so I'm trying to do my part.

Had a good week, nice weather, final week of camp.  We had 2-3 weekend groups.  We are pretty well booked up on our fall weekends.  That's good, keeps the operating monies coming in.  

We took one couple out for Friday evening.  They have spent their summer volunteering in our camping programs (they live in Florida 9 months of the year).  We took them to Shipshewanna (Amish country) to eat at the Blue Gate Restaurant (family style...wonderful food), and then to a southern gospel concert in their theater after supper.  Greater Vision was there, hubby's favorite group.  It was a blessed night...God's presence was among us.  Greater Vision is a genuine, from the heart, group who believe in honoring God in all they do, say, sing.  They are funny and entertaining, but they also had us in tears as we worshiped and sang along with some of the old hymns.

You know, there is a large segment of us who miss the traditional way of worshiping...we are tired of the choruses on the wall and the rock and roll bands.  I'm sure that has it's place, and it reaches young people, but what about the rest of us?  Why do we have to change our method of worship?  Can there not be a blend of music?  I was told at lunch that the senior adults are the largest group of people leaving the church.  They can't worship with loud "rock and roll" type music.  It goes against the standards they were raised by, it goes against their traditional way of being led into the presence of God and ready for Him to speak.  I'm one of "them".  

During the three summer months we hold "Come As You Are' Sunday morning worship services on the grounds in our Learning Center.  I've seen more and more people coming to those services, because they are looking for church as it used to be.  They would like to have this become a year round church.  I don't think that will happen with a denominational church one mile down the road, but I understand their frustration, their hurt, their desire to worship in a way that is meaningful to them.   What's the answer?  Wish I knew.  I'll be searching for that answer as our CAYA services draw to a close after Labor Day.

Here are my devotional verses and thoughts from this past week:

The Word for You Today:

1.  "Don't jump to conclusions!  (I will guard my ways that I may not sin with my tongue.  Ps. 39:1).  Before you jump to conclusions about someone, stop and ask God for wisdom, then sit down and make a list of their best qualities.  That way you can approach them with the right attitude and say things you won't regret."

2.  "Live as God intended.  (1) Guard your tongue, say less than you think.  (2) Make promises sparingly, and keep them faithfully.  (3)  Always say a kind word.  (4)  Be genuinely interest in others.  (5) Be cheerful.  (6) Keep an open mind, get all the facts.  (7) Discourage gossip.  (8) Be sensitive to feelings of others.  (9) Pay no attention to ill-natured remarks about you.  (10) Don't worry about the credit, just give your best and be patient!"

I Corinthians

  • temptation is irresistible.  You can trust God to keep the temptation from becoming so strong that you can't stand up against it, for he has promised this and will do what he says.  He will show you how to escape temptation's power so that you can bear up patiently against it."  (10:13)  (sent this one to my granddaughter as she starts back to Middle School.  I can't imagine all that she is up against in her world, but I pray God leads her through the maze, and she comes out strong!)
  • must do everything for the glory of God, even your eating and drinking.  (10:31)
  • I try to please everyone in everything I do, not doing what I like or what is best for me, but what is best for them, so that they may be saved.  (10:33)
  • Love is very patient and kind, never jealous or envious, never boastful or proud, never haughty, or selfish or rude.  Love does not demand its own way.  It is not irritable or touchy.  It does not hold grudges and will hardly even notice when others do it wrong.  It is never glad about injustice, but rejoices whenever truth wins out.  If you love someone you will be loyal to him no matter what the cost.  You will always believe in him, always expect the best of him, and always stand your ground in defending him.  All special gifts and powers from God will someday come to an end, but love goes on forever.  (13:4-8)
  • Let love be your greatest aim; never the less, ask also for the special abilities the Holy Spirit gives, and especially the gift of prophecy, being able to preach the messages of God.  (14:1)
  • But one who prophesies, preaching the messages of God, is helping others grow in the Lord, encouraging and comforting them.  So...the one who prophesies, preaching messages from God, helps the entire church grow in holiness and happiness. (14:3-4)

  • Do you want a long, good life?  Then watch your tongue!  Keep your lips from lying.  Turn from all known sin and spend your time in doing good.  Try to live in peace with everyone, work hard at it.  (34:12-14)
  • The Lord is close to those whose hearts are breaking; he rescues those who are humbly sorry for their sins.  (34:18)
  • Be delighted in the Lord.  Then he will give you all your heart's desires.  Commit everything you do to the Lord.  Trust him to help you do it and he will.  (37:4-5)
  • Rest in the Lord, wait patiently for him to act.  Don't be envious of evil men who prosper.  Stop your anger.  Turn off your wrath.  Don't fret and worry---it only leads to harm.  For the wicked shall be destroyed, but those who trust the Lord shall be given every blessing.  But all who humble themselves before the Lord shall be given every blessing, and shall have wonderful peace. (37:7-11)

  • Keep your mouth closed and you'll stay out of trouble.  (23:23)

Seems like this week there was quite a bit of instruction about guarding the tongue and the way we speak.  I am forever trying to learn this.  In fact, I have written a verse and put in over my desk to remind me:  Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands, just as we told you so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders, and so that you will not be dependent on anybody. (I Thess. 4:11-12)  God has been speaking to me in many ways and means the past eight years since we have been here on the campgrounds.  Perhaps I'm listening better now that I have lots of time to myself, less distractions. May I continue to learn, and put into practice that which I learn.  May God keeping working on me!!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

A Sunday Getaway

We took a break today and got off the campgrounds for the majority of the day.  Felt good.  Hubby is watching the St. Louis Cardinals against the Colorado Rockies at St. Louis ballgame right now, and I'm going to join him as soon as I finish this blog.  Having lived in St. Louis (hello to my Maryland Heights blog follower...drop me an email sometime!), for ten years, we still consider the Cardinals "our" team.  That team in Detroit hasn't caught our attention yet.  We enjoyed going to the games in St. Louis...that's one of the things I miss about not living there any longer.

So, last night we heard that Dr. Dobson was going to speak at Central Wesleyan Church in Holland.  We were there in time for the 9:15 a.m. service (left home at 7:20).  Large church...guessing it seats 4,000, and it was almost full, plus there was a second service. We enjoyed the worship, led by Melinda Priest, a daughter of some friends of ours, and the worship director at "Come to the Fire", an annual ladies weekend event for holiness women across the nation.  It was powerful music, full orchestra, huge choir.  We enjoyed hearing Dr. Dobson speak again.  He talked about leaving a legacy to our children, grandchildren, and beyond.  He talked about his own heritage.

After the morning service we drove around Saugatuck and Douglas, both touristy towns.  Then we headed cross country to my husband's parents place to visit them, after having lunch in Hastings.  We were back home by early evening, just in time for all the rains.  Chatted on the cottage porch with our Florida friends who are staying in the cottage for a couple of months, and now home to blog and watch a ball game.

Boys camp ended well, we had beautiful weather all week.  It's been a mild weekend, relaxing.  Windows are open instead of AC running.  This is Michigan at its best.  We have one more camp this week, a women's soccer team.  Then we head on into our big Labor Day weekend hoopla with the Nazarene Evangelists' Gathering, and many weekend guests throughout the fall season.  It's been a good summer over all!

Not much from my devotional journal, since I blogged on Wednesday, but here goes:

The Word for You Today

  • I have been crucified with Christ. (Gal 2:20)
  • Coming alive means dying to self
  • You can only bear fruit when you are willing to die

I Corinthians
  • But although being a 'know-it-all' makes us feel important, what is really needed to build the church is love.  If anyone thinks he knows all the answers, he is just showing his ignorance.  But the person who truly loves God is the one who is open to God's knowledge. (8:2-3)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Wednesday Night Blog Update

I did not post a blog on Sunday, as is my normal routine, so thought I would catch up tonight.  We flew through Girls' Camp last week, lots of hot and humid weather, one stormy night.  All went well, girls went home with happy memories.  This week is Boys' Camp, our last official camp of 2011.  We will host a college soccer camp, but they sort of run their own camp.  We house and feed them.

This week is much nicer camping weather.  It was in the 70's today, down in the 50's tonight.  The boys are enjoying so many activities, as did the girls.  ILNC has much to offer now.  Canoeing, Zip-line/Climbing Wall, Archery, field games, Frisbee Golf, swimming in the lake, Gaga court, Tether Ball, Dodge Ball court...the list goes on.  There's something for everyone.  

Both my sweethearts started school this week.  I talked with them tonight, and they both like their schools.  That's good!!  I asked Little Princess if she made a new friend at school, and she replied, "I have a lot of new friends!"  Good deal!!  Big Sis has got her group of friends back together.  She really likes her school, she tells me that often.  I'm glad she looks forward to each day.

I woke up in the mood to clean today.  I had a long list, but I ended up only getting the front porch cleaned.  It looks good.  I spent the afternoon on the boat with the canoers and out at the zip-line.  I swept floors tonight, but I was intending to do much more in-depth cleaning today.  The weather was so great, I started outside, and didn't get beyond the porch.  Oh, well, I have the rest of my life to clean, right?

Here's my devotional verses and thoughts from the last week and a half:

"The Word For You Today":
1.  God gave us discernment to enable us to pray for one another, not criticize.

2.  Let your spouse know how much you appreciate him/her.

3.  God is doing a work in you.  You can count on tribulation as you walk with God, but you can also count on God's grace to see you through.  Whatever you ask God for (patience, wisdom, strength, success), He works in you to develop you through His process so that you might grow into that for which you asked.

4.  Are you a good listener?  (a)Listen actively:  paraphrase, restate what you hear; Clarify:  ask questions; Feedback:  share your own thoughts without judging.  (b)Listen with empathy, put yourself in their shoes.  (c)Listen openly, try to understand.  (d)Listen with awareness.  Are they consistent, factual, honest?  (e)If you don't understand their point of view, don't attack them; just thank them for sharing with your their perspective.

5.  Love cares more for others than for self. (I Cor 13:4)  Here's some hints on building good relationships:  (a)Disagreements will either give you ulcers or understanding.  (b)Make conflict a time to learn, not loose.  (c)Be gracious to others as God is gracious to you. (d)Allow those who fail to keep their dignity.


  • Friendship with God is reserved for those who reverence him.  With them alone he shares the secrets of his promises. (25:14)
  • Assign me Godliness and Integrity as my bodyguards.  (25:21)
  • The one thing I want from God, the thing I seek most of all, is the privilege of meditating in his Temple, living in his presence every day of my life, delighting in his incomparable perfections and glory.  There I'll be when troubles come.  He will hide me.  He will set me on a high rock out of reach of all my enemies.  (27:4-5)
  • Don't be impatient.  Wait for the Lord, and he will come and save you!  Be brave, stouthearted, and courageous.  Yes, wait and he will help you.  (27:14)
  • Weeping may go on all night, but in the morning there is joy.  (30:5)
  • You alone are my God; my times are in your hands. (31:14)

  • Don't repay evil for evil.  Wait for the Lord to handle the matter.  The Lord loathes all cheating and dishonesty.  
  • He who guards his...tongue keeps himself from calamity.  (21:23)
  • We can justify our every deed but God looks at our motives.  (21:2)
  • God is more pleased when we are just and fair than when we give him gifts.  (21:3)

I Corinthians:
  • But, strange as it seems, we Christians actually do have within us a portion of the very thoughts and mind of Christ.  (2:16)
  • Now the most important thing about a servant is that he does just as his Master tells him to.  What about me?  Have I been a good servant?  Well, I don't worry over what you think about this, or what anyone else thinks.  I don't even trust my own judgment on this point.  My conscience is clear, but even that isn't final proof.  It is the Lord himself who must examine me and decide.  (4:2-4)