Thursday, January 29, 2009

Enthusiasm Makes the Difference

Although my nephew, Tristan, was a little tired...he still showed great enthusiasm when it came time for his birthday cake!!
And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; Colossians 3:23

At the beginning of any task, more than anything else, your attitude will affect its successful outcome." No matter what you are doing ~ calling a friend or family member, scrubbing the bathroom, doing school work or studying your Bible, remodeling a home (or church, in our case), it's vital to be enthusiastic.

A cheerful attitude at work and at home is contagious, and a smile can transform any area you are in.

The Bible tells us to serve the Lord with joy:

Psalms 100:2 Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.

Ephesians 6:7-8 With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men: Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free.

Make today a GREAT day!!!!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Short Church Update

I haven’t been over to our church in a week or so, but Jeff has taken some new pictures. I will get those posted as soon as he sends them to me. I know they have gotten most (if not all) of the demolition done now and have sealed everything that was damaged by the hopefully it doesn’t STINK in there any more.

We have run into some issues in working with the city, though. I guess there is a bunch of official mumbo jumbo that they want before they will issue a building permit. So, until that is issued the work is at a stand still.

Please pray for Jeff during this time. I know it is very difficult for him to go over there and see nothing being done. He had to announce last night that, at this time it doesn’t look like we will be doing anything special for Easter this year because our temporary location just won’t allow us to do that. It is too small and there is no way to have a fellowship there. I know that was hard for him in more ways than one.

Easter is a special service in and of itself, but it is even more special for us – Jeff preached his first service as Pastor on Easter Sunday. This year is the actual date, too, April 12th. It will be 11 years. So, if you think about it, just keep us in your prayers.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Just a Thought...

The kids and I are reading through our Bibles together this year. It has led to some great conversations been us throughout the week as we all talk about what we read that day and what we have learned.

The other day I took some time to really think about one of the verses:

I think everyone should take inventory of where you've allowed even the most wonderful things in life to take precedence over your relationship with God.

Anything or anyone other than God Himself, who you've placed on a pedestal, is certain to come down. It will not stay there, for God is jealous for you and thankfully He is, for He is the only one with whom your trust is secure.

He is the only one who will never disappoint you. He is the one that deserves your full attention and dedication. And the great thing about that ~~ if you are willing to do that, all the other areas of your life will fall into line too!!!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Random Thoughts for the Day

I knew I wanted to add something to my blog today, but nothing special was coming to mind.....then I read Teri’s blog (and I stole her post!!) I don’t think she’ll mind though, especially since I changed all the answers. Love you Teri!!!!!!

Outside My Window... It’s still pitch black. I can’t see anything. And its 17 degrees.

I am thinking... WOW, it almost 7:30am and I’m not even dressed yet!!!
I am thankful for... my wonderful husband and children.
From the kitchen... I can smell my coffee. I love that smell first thing in the morning. I love getting up to a shiny clean kitchen and a fresh pot of coffee.
I am wearing... my PJ’s ~~ I really should go get dressed soon.
I am creating... a peaceful home. I have put some things in motion that have really brought peace and joy to everyone in the house.
I am going... to Minot on Saturday to celebrate my nephew’s FIRST birthday. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TRISTAN!!!!
I am reading... through the book of Exodus ~ so are my kids. I am also reading a really good novel that I hope to finish tonight.

I am hoping... that the weather stays nice for my drive to Minot on Saturday.
I am hearing... my furnace ~~ it is the only sound in the house right now.
Around the house... there is a lot of SNOW!!!! LOL On the other hand, the inside in clean and quiet.
One of my favorite things... playing with my Grandson, Braden.
A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week… 5 more workouts!!!!
Here are 2 pictures am sharing.
Tristan and Braden when they were a few months old. (Not mobile yet!!)

Braden and Tristan at 9 months old ~~ watch out, they have mobility and curiousity to go along with it!!!

My prayer is that they will grow up to be very close. And I do all I can to get them together whenever possible, even though they live 100 miles apart.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

The Work Continues......

It’s been another busy week, with a lot more work getting done at the church. I think we are getting closer to the demolition phase being over. Hopefully by next week they will be putting a sealant over everything that is exposed. This will remove the fire smell that is still VERY strong.

Here are some of the pictures that were taken this week:
This is the ceiling in the basement ( this was all removed, as you will see in the next pictures.)
Anyone who has been to our church knows about the "Secret Room." Well, the secret room is no longer secret (and once the remodel is done it won't even be there.)

Here is the view looking down through the floor/ceiling that had to be removed.

As you can see, the baptistery, back rooms, and pulpit area have all been removed.
Another picture of the hole in the floor....maybe we could use it as a quick way to get to the basement!!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

A Thought for Tuesday

Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things. Philippians 3:19

“Too often, we've got our mind set on earthly things, and not on the big picture of what God is, who He is, and what He's doing in and around us. If you find yourself consumed with life and all of its nuances, pull back a bit and set your mind on what He is doing around you. Allow that to realign the priorities of your thought processes and your heart.”

I received the above paragraph in an email this morning and thought, “HOW TRUE!!” It is so easy to become so consumed with the daily things of our lives that we forget what God has for us and how He wants to work through us. We can become like Martha....too busy, being busy.

Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. Colossians 3:2

Monday, January 12, 2009


Psalms 37:5 Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.

How many times do we make a decision and commit ourselves to something BEFORE coming to God? Many times praying and asking God for His leadership is an afterthought.

Today, instead of asking God to bless what you are planning, ask God to show you the way HE would have for you, then be committed to following His direction. Trust Him ~ His ways are ALWAYS better than ours!!

Have a great Monday everyone.
After being on vacation for a week this was kind of how I felt this morning when I was woke up at 5am by the sounds of the blizzard outside our bedroom window.
I have decided the God definitely has a good sense of humor. He took this California sunshine girl and transplanted me into North Dakota and said welcome to the land of extremes....extremely hot summer and extremely snowy winters. And this winter has definitely topped them all!!
You would think after being here for over 22 years that I would be used to the winter ~ NOPE. I still don't care for snow!!! But I do love living in North Dakota and doing exactly what God would have me to do (so I will look past the fluffy, white stuff...or should I say OVER it....and keep my eyes focused on Him.)
Here is the sign we had made to hang outside of our temporary location. We are very excited about where God has us right now. This is a mall that people go walking at everyday. It is a high traffic area and we will get a lot of visibility.
This picture was taken Saturday morning while the men were having their weekly prayer meeting. Things were still looking pretty bare. Since then we have hung things on the wall, gotten some greenery, and hung a beautiful suede curtain in front of the big glass doors at the entrance (to reduce distractions during services.)

Friday, January 09, 2009

The Demolition Continues...

The damage in the photo below is in an office that was located behind our Baptistry. This room has to be completely torn down.
Here is the basement and what used to be the prophet's chamber area. The walls have been torn down and the floor is in the process of being ripped up.
Here is what is left of the kitchen. All the cabinets, counters,etc. has been torn out ~ and so has the floor.
This is looking up from the basement through the holes that have been burned all the way through to the upstairs. I wish this picture had turned out better. When I took the picture you could actually look through the hole and see the cross that was hanging upstairs.
This picture was taken in the sanctuary looking towards the pulpit area and baptistry. Within the next day or so the wall behind those studs will be taken out, along with the room that is on the other side of it. This is the area that the fire was the worst. Our contractor told us the baptistry is what saved the whole building from going up in flames. If it had not been there the flames would have gone straight into the attic and the roof.
Another view of the room that has to be demolished. As you can see, the flames and smoke came up through the vents.
The same room ~ more damage from the vents.
The pulpit area has now been removed. The floor underneath burned all the way through so that you can look down into the basement.
This is one of the holes upstairs that is burned all the way through.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009


As I was relaxing today (I can’t tell you how much I am enjoying my vacation) I came across a blog that I read every now and then. Today she had posted FIVE THINGS SHE REALLY LIKED.

I thought it would be nice to do AND to see what your FIVE FAVORITE THINGS are.

Here are mine:

1. Curling up on the couch with my hubby on a quiet evening.
2. A hot bath and a good book
3. Spending time with my grandson
4. Laughing with my children5. Driving (and singing along to the radio)

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Where we will be meeting soon....

We will be temporarily relocating in a store front at the Gateway Mall here in Bismarck. It is kind of small but we will be able to hold all our services and continue Bible Institute classes as well. The area should be ready by Wednesday. Jeff and some of the men met there this morning for Men's Prayer Meeting.
This is the front view. (We'll be removing the large wine bottle from the window.) After they finish clearing out the area we will be setting up a divider to help eliminate distractions from the mall during services.

Another view of the inside.
The open balcony area above the main room will be used as an office area for the computer, printer, etc.

Pictures of the Damage - Upstairs

Here are some of the pictures of the damage that was done upstairs:This is the wall at the front of the church, the baptistry, and the pulpit area. The floor underneath this area is where the worst of the fire was. All of this has to be torn out and rebuilt.

This is the other end of the church. The holes in this picture were put there by the firemen in order to save the attic area that is behind that wall.

This is what all the registers in the church look like. You can see how the smoke poured out of any area that it could.

Pictures of the Damage - Downstairs

I am finally able to post some of the pictures we took from the fire. I'll do another post for the upstairs.
This is right around the area where the fire began, in the prophet's chamber.
I'm pretty sure this is the prophet's chamber, too....although it could be a different part of the basement.

Another picture of the prophet's chamber. It is truly a miracle that the family staying there was not harmed during this.

There used to be a dividing curtain that hung from floor to ceiling that separated the sleeping area from the living area. There is no evidence of that at all any more.

2007 in Review

Can you believe that 2008 is gone? It seems to have just flown by. Here are some of the highlights of my year:

1. I know he was born at the END of 2007, but it has been such a thrill to watch my grandson ~ BRADEN ~ this year. He fills my heart my a joy I can’t even explain.

2. I continued my Master’s classes through the Spring, Summer, and Fall terms...finally graduating on December 10th!! I must say I am very proud of myself for reaching this accomplishment.

3. In August I lost a very special person. My father passed away. I could write so much about this, but since I’m just highlighting my year I will just say that through the loss of my dad I have drawn very close to the brothers and sister that before then I barely knew.

4. August was also a time of joy. It was then that I found out I was going to be a Grandma again! Nick and Aundrea got a clean bill of health after her chemo was finished and as an added bonus found out they were pregnant. MADISON CHRISTINE is due in March.

5. September was a month of adventure for me. On the 7th I flew from Bismarck to London, spending 2 ½ days there before heading to Bangalore, India for 5 weeks. It was a remarkable trip. One that taught me a lot about myself and showed me the world from a completely different perspective.

6. The holidays were a busy time, as is normal for most people. I finished my degree during that time and then spent a lot of time with friends and family.

7. The last memorable event of 2007 occurred the day after Christmas. That was the day our church building was nearly completely destroyed by fire. So many people are amazed that this has not been a discouragement to us, but we refuse to let the devil think he got a victory ~ instead we look at this as a very positive one was hurt, no one lost their home, and the church is getting a wonderful overhaul!!
I'll show more pictures of the church in a separate blog posting.