Sunday, September 26, 2010

Visiting The Lorentzens/ Sarah's 2nd Birthday

When we flew to Anchorage to spende time with my parents, we went a couple of days early so we could spend time with the Lorentzens. We met John and his son Madison and daughter Amanda two years ago when they came to Alaska to sing and preach the Gospel. Here's a link to that post Then when we made our trip South the summer of 2009 we stopped at the Lorentzen's home in North Dakota on the way down and the way back. Posted here: and on the way back here
Then last October John and Darcy came up and visited us with their youngest daughter.

Madison came back the summer after their trip and worked about 20 miles from our home in Alaska while we were traveling to North Carolina and back. Madison met Morgan on the first trip and they got married this last summer. The rest of the family drove up the ALCAN (Alaska-Canadian Highway) for the wedding in a bus they converted to a motor home.

John & Darcy along with Amanda and Moriah, two of their 10 children.

We spent the afternoon together at what we call the Rocket park in Anchorage.

Darcy having fun with the kids.

Often when we are in Anchorage we just park our motor home at the airfield where we fly into. The Lorentzens were parked there too and the kids had a blast playing together amongest the airplanes. Below the parents are visiting in the motor home while the kids are visiting outside on the airplane parking ramp.

We really enjoyed our time with the Lorentzens. It was great fun spending time with a family that loves Jesus and strives to serve Him.
Amanda gave us a concert late one evening. She is a very talented musician with a real heart for serving God.
After we got back to Nondalton, Austin Lorentzen came and visited us for a few days before they headed back to North Dakota. School had started here in town before we got back, so we felt like we'd better concentrate on getting the schooling routine going again. Austin studied and ran cross country with the rest of the kids. We took him berry picking one afternoon, had hot dogs on the fire and practiced shooting a pistol.
We celebrated Sarah's 2nd birthday while we were in Anchorage. We improvised a piniata and the kids had fun taking turns swinging at it.
Sarah got her her share of the candy when we finally gave up trying to break the sturdy box we used and Paul threw the candy up into the air.

Grandpa is holding Sarah up to see her cake.

Sarah loved the little car we picked up at the thrift store earlier in the day.
When we got back to Nondalton, Sarah had another birthday party. She still talks about her birthday!
Sarah loves the bag of bows Lavonne's Mom Claudine got for her.

Some pictures of Sarah...

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Abigail's 16th Birthday

My oldest baby just turned 16!

Abigail has grown to be a beautiful young lady. She is bright and talented and can easily handle anything that I need help with. She loves new challenges and will frequently take up a hobby and learn all there is to learn before she moves on to a new interest. She can light up the room with her smile.
Abigail has been out hunting with Paul several times, but she has never gotten a caribou or a moose. So, for her birthday they decided to go hunting. They had seen some caribou earlier in the day so they came home packed up the plane and headed out to find them.
As they headed out the fog was rolling in and they couldn't land where they wanted to and they couldn't find any caribou where there wasn't fog. So, they came home. The next day was Abigail's birthday so Paul, Abigail, Deborah and Quentin loaded up on two ATV's and headed up the mountain for a birthday ride.
Below Abigail and Quentin are checking the oil before they head out.
They had an awesome ride. They got stuck a few times, turned one of the 4-wheeler's over and brought home a couple of spruce hens for supper. The stuff memories are made of...

They got home just in time for Abigail's birthday party.

Below is a slideshow I made up for Abigai's 16th birthday. Pause the playlist at the bottom of the blog to you don't hear two songs at once.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Jewish Festivals/Names of God and Shavuot 2010

Someone commented that they weren't sure we believed in Jesus anymore since we had so many blogs about Jewish feasts. Nothing could be further from the truth! Our faith in Jesus Christ the Messiah has, if possible, increased as we have studied Him in the Old Testament. He has saved us because of His grace and mercy and His love for us is unimaginable.
Our studies over the last few years have enhanced our understanding, and as such we have changed our celebrations and traditions as we align them with what we find in God's Word. Our studies began in earnest when Paul was asked to speak at a Feast of Tabernacles Celebration. You can hear him here.
As he studied and prepared, one thing that really stood out to him was that God calls these different feasts "My Feasts." (Lev. 23) The Hebrew word translated feast actually means "appointed times" and He wants His people to hold them in high regard and commemorate them. History shows us that God keeps His appointed times, some obvious examples are: God rested on the Sabbath, Jesus died on Passover, was buried at the start of Unleavened Bread, was raised on First Fruits and God sent the Holy Spirit on the Feast of Weeks. There are many more examples that have happened in the past and I believe many of God's prophecies yet to come will also be fulfilled on His Appointed Times. I believe one of the many reasons God commanded us to keep them is so that we will be as ready as possible for what is to come. God has so much to remind us of and teach us as we keep His Appointed Times. Unfortunately the Christian Church has let its traditions move away from the celebrations that God commanded us to keep. If we are going to keep celebrations that honor God why don't we keep them as He commanded us to? No matter how heartfelt our celebrations are, I am reminded of when Samuel chastised Saul because he decided to keep the best animals in order to sacrifice them to God instead of slaughtering them as God commanded. (I Sam. 15:10-35) God wants our obedience.
The last three feasts of this year, The Feast of Trumpets or Day of Shouting (Yom Teruah), The Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur), and The Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot) (otherwise know as the Fall Feasts) begin this week. God is teaching us much from them. Take the time to do a little research and celebrate them too.
Here are some links to our past celebrations:
David Martin made a video of our Shavuot (Festival of Weeks) 2010 celebration. You can watch it at the bottom of this post. I had some trouble loading it, so if you can't watch it look back in a couple of days and I'll try and get David to put it on his website and I'll link to it.

Something else that has been a powerful testimony to us as we have studied the Old Testament is the actual name of God. In Hebrew it is יהוה. In English we would write it YHWH and probably pronounce it either Yahuwah or Yahweh. His name was not pronounced for so long that we are not sure how to pronounce it and you can read many articles defending several pronunciations. YHWH is found almost 7000 times in the bible, in the KJV it is translated Jehovah twice and as the LORD the rest of the times. YHWH is a proper name and LORD is a title. During the period of the Old Testament YHWH was used and pronounced. God told us to call Me by My name, revere My name, pray in my name, swear in My name, greet each other in My name, fear My name, etc. Sometime after the Old Testament was written Jewish religious leaders decided it would be better not to pronounce God's name because we are told not to take His name in vain. Kind of a better safe than sorry idea. They started pronouncing YHWH as adonai which means lord and thus the English translators substituted LORD for YHWH. You can tell the difference when you are reading most English translations by looking at whether it is capitalized or not. If it is translated from YHWH it is LORD if Lord is meant then the last three letters are small. Yah is also used especially in the Psalms as an abbreviated name for YHWH. Since God tells us to use His name, we'd better do it the best way we know how for now and not just totally change it to Lord. Of course, it should never be taken in vain!
Jesus, on the other hand, I believe is an honest form of Yahoshua, transliterated from Hebrew to Aramaic to Greek to Latin to English. During Jesus' time the common rendering was Yeshua so this is probably what His mother called Him. Yeshua means salvation and we lose so much in our English translations. If we were reading the Old Testament in Hebrew we would see many references to Jesus that we miss in the English translations. Here is a link to a good article by Myron Martin talking about Yeshua in the Tanakh:
David Martin has also written a couple of articles about God's name.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Grandma and Grandpa's Trip pt 2

We had a wonderful visit with my Mom & Dad. The kids look forward to their trip every year. (Paul and I do too.)
Below is Sarah with her Grandpa.
Paul and the kids found several glaciers to hike up and around.
Joshua posing by a rock carved by a glacier.

I wasn't along on this one , but I'm not sure Quentin should be standing there. Who knows when it is going to break apart.
Benjamin went on one of the more rigorous hikes and did great. He was so proud of himself. The older kids called him a mountain goat. When he got back he was bursting over to tell me all about it.
On the road out of Valdez we had a little excitement. I was giving Paul a break and driving when one of the tires blew its tread. Thankfully it was one of the duals so I didn't feel it. It sure was loud though!

Paul and my Dad got it switched out with the spare...
After Valdez we headed down to Seward. The high school there had an invitational cross country track meet that the girls wanted to participate in. They had been training throughout the summer and it was fun running with all those other girls in the excitement of a real race.
They are right in the middle in the gray t-shirts.

Grandma with Abigail and Deborah after the race.

Quentin is in the eight grade so he ran in the community run which was also 5k.
Quentin with Grandma after his race.

Grandma & Grandpa took Quentin, Anna, Joshua and Caleb on the Mitch Seavey dog sled tour. Mitch has won the iditarod and they got to ride behind some of his dogs and learn all about dog sled racing.
The next stop on our trip was Soldotna. Until one was built a few years ago in Anchorage, Soldotna used to be the only place in Alaska to go to a Dairy Queen. We still make it a point to stop there and have ice cream if we are driving by.
Below Benjamin is sharing with Sarah.
We spent the night at Clam Gulch and then spent the next day combing the beach for interesting creatures, roasting hot dogs and trying to get the perfect family picture.

And again after the rocks from the picture above got surrounded by water.

Benjamin accidentally sprayed Grandpa with sand, oops...
Grandma & Grandpa

Deborah, Sarah and Grandma found some nice fireweed.
We put "longest orange peel contest" on our list of things to do while traveling in a motor home.
We love stopping at parks with playgrounds while we travel. They make great picnic stops.
Below Paul and the kids are seeing who can stay on the swinging beam the longest.

The kids said good-by to Grandma and Grandpa at Merrill Field (the smaller airport where we had our motor home parked) and then Paul and I drove them to the International Airport.
We can't wait to see you again next year!