I have enjoyed seeing Paul in an old role he used to be in...worship leader. He is very good at just talking from his heart in between the songs, and he has a good strong voice for leading. I know people enjoy him. Wish the church was closer so we could continue to attend and help them as they try to revive. It used to be one of the largest churches on the Michigan district, but it's down to about 50 people now. So sad. I hope and pray God has a future for that church.
This past week our friends from Florida helped us put landscaping rock around the house and shed. We probably need two more truck loads to complete our project, but for now we have the house and shed outlined in rocks instead of bark. Next year we will do the same for the cottage and its' shed. Our friends left yesterday to start on their journey back south. They stay in our cottage for 2-3 months each summer, and do much to help us while here. This year he painted the exterior of the house and all the window and garage trim and shutters. Big job, well done. They have been long time friends, catching up with us at most every place we have ever lived. That's why we are now privileged to have them spend their summers at our cottage next door. We still are the recipients of their kindness and skills. They are also interior decorators as well, and gave the inside of our house a face lift again this year.
The dogs received their bi-monthly grooming this past week. Last haircut before winter. Those days of ice and snow are just ahead for us, I fear. So many people have been busy cleaning up and putting away things, getting ready for the winter season. Is it going to come early? Seems like we have started earlier this year. Cooler days make us think that way, I guess.
I entertained a couple of times this week, despite fighting a head cold. I had our Florida friends in mid-week for white chicken chili, and last night I had in two couples that work or volunteer with maintenance and housekeeping. It was a pooled together kind of meal...one brought BBQ ribs, another two pies, and I fixed beans, potato salad, squash, macaroni salad, and rolls. I think Fridays are going to be designated company nights as much as possible this winter. I've already got plans for next Friday. I can only do two couples at a time, due to my table size, and house size. That works for me. I usually serve Buffet style since my table is small. That way everyone can help themselves and then go back for seconds if they wish.
Thursday I was in a loner kind of mood. I took off work in the afternoon and ran the banking and post office errands in Vicksburg, and then headed out to Schoolcraft. Got a sweet tea and an ice cream cone at McD's and just sat in the car thinking and praying as I treated myself, alone. That night hubby and I went to see the pastor who had the gall bladder surgery...still in the hospital at that time.
Friday was a long day trip for hubby and me. We took the dogs along since we planned to be gone all day. Went to Grand Ledge to get signatures on some documents from Paul's boss. Then went to the state water labs in Lansing to drop off some samples. From there we drove to Leslie to meet some volunteers/friends for lunch in a converted railroad depot. Tried to look up an RV couple in Jackson, but couldn't find them, so then we headed to Spring Arbor to attend a visitation for another RV person who had passed away this past week. (That makes four funerals in the last two weeks). From there we drove to the northwest corner of Kalamazoo County to Menard's to get some items needed for the camp. Had supper at a Mexican restaurant before coming back home. A long day, but a nice diversion from the campgrounds!!
So that's been our week! It's been a good one. It seems that God had a lot of good things to say to me in His Word this past week. So once again I share from my devotional reading for the week:
The Word for You Today:
- When your dream is from God He will also give you the necessary skills and gifts and resources to fulfill the dream
- There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you have to endure...(I Peter 1:6)....Don't Give Up!
- For the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel, says: only in returning to me and waiting for me will you be saved, in quietness and confidence is your strength. (30:15)
- Yet the Lord still waits for you to come to him, so he can show you his love; he will conquer you to bless you, just as he said. For the Lord is faithful to his promises. Blessed are all those who wait for him to help them. (30:18)
- But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. (40:31)
- I have called you back from the ends of the earth and said you must serve but me alone, for I have chosen you and will not throw you away. Fear not, for I am with you. Do not be dismayed. I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will uphold you with my victorious right hand. (41:9-10)
- But now the Lord who created you...says, Don't be afraid, for I have ransomed you; I have called you by name; you are mine. When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown! When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up---the flames will not consume you. For I am the Lord your God, your Savior, the Holy One of Israel. (42:1-3)
- I have created you and cared for you since you were born. I will be your God through all your lifetime, yes, even when your hair is white with age. I made you and I will care for you. I will carry you along and be your Savior. (46:3)
- For, dear brothers, you have been given freedom: not freedom to do wrong, but freedom to love and serve each other. For the whole Law can be summed up in this one command: "Love others as you love yourself." (5:13-14)
- But when the Holy Spirit controls our lives, he will produce this kind of fruit in us: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. (22-23)
- If we are living now by the Holy Spirit's power, let us follow the Holy Spirit's leading in every part of our lives. Then we won't need to look for honors and popularity, which lead to jealousy and hard feelings. (25-26)
- Don't be misled; remember that you can't ignore God and get away with it: a man will always reap just the kind of crop he sows! If he sows to please his own wrong desires he will be planting seeds of evil and he will surely reap a harvest of spiritual decay and death; but if he plants the good things of the Spirit, he will reap the everlasting life which the Holy Spirit gives him. And let us not get tired of doing what is right, for after a while we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don't get discouraged and give up. That's why whenever we can we should always be kind to everyone, and especially to our Christian brothers. (6:7-10)
- So overflowing is his kindness toward us that he took away all our sins through the blood of his Son, by whom we are saved; and he has showered down upon us the richness of his grace---for how well he understands us and knows what is best for us at all times. God has told us his secret reason for sending Christ, a plan he decided on in mercy long ago; and this was his purpose: that when the time is ripe he will gather us all together from wherever we are--in heaven or on earth---to be with Him in Christ, forever. (1:7-10)
- ...that out of his glorious, unlimited resources he will give you the mighty inner strengthening of his Holy Spirit. And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts, living within you as you trust in him. May your roots go down deep into the soils of God's marvelous love; and may you be able to feel and understand, as all God's children should, how long, how wide, how deep and how high his love really is; and to experience this love for yourselves, though it is so great that you will never see the end of it or fully know or understand it. And so at last you will be filled up with God himself. Now glory be to God who by his mighty power at work within us is able to do far more than we would ever dare or ask or even dream of---infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, or hopes. May he be given glory forever and ever through endless ages because of his master plan of salvation for the church through Jesus Christ. (3:16-21)
- ...live and act in a way worthy of those who have been chosen... Be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other's faults because of your love. Try always to be led along together by the Holy Spirit, and so be at peace with one another. (4:2-3)
- ...we will lovingly follow the truth at all times---speaking truly, dealing truly, living truly---and so become more and more in every way like Christ... (4:15-16)