Thank You

Driving through Tennessee one beautiful morning on this last trip, we heard the story of “The Volunteer State”. I hadn’t thought too much about their slogan (every state has one!), until Christopher researched it on the Internet and read aloud to us the history behind it. As he read the stories of men who had given their lives for others, and done incredibly heroic deeds which resulted in the sacrifice of their most precious gift, themselves, I was amazed. My Grandad is a veteran of the Vietnam War, and in fact, was awarded a Purple Heart. It’s only by the grace of God is he still with us, because he nearly lost his life from enemy combat.

Thank you to those of you who are working (and those who have already fulfilled their time of service) to keep America the land of the free. May each one of us never take that freedom from granted.

Most of all, my heart is grateful to my Lord and Savior, who bore my sin upon the cross, and gave His life to ransom me.

Only for Jesus,
Sarah

“This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. . . . Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen” (1 Timothy 1:15 and 17).

Behind the Scenes Family Photo Session

Last Wednesday, if you were at our house, you would have seen all nine of us loading all our instruments, gear, and then ourselves into four different vehicles (two from close relatives 🙂 ) and heading down to our local feed store. We decided it was time to take individual shots of each person with their instrument, as well as another group photo. Dad had been at this feed store for grass seed last year, and he thought it would make a great backdrop for the photos.

We were on a schedule: we had about 10 minutes for each person’s photo session, which included finding the next location in the feed store “storage area”, and working with the different lighting, etc. Christopher took the main photos with Joseph backing him up, and I just took photos of the whole scene. Grandad and Grandma came along to watch, and it was quite the family event.

We ended with our family photo on the loading dock. Then, we all loaded back up, and drove home, where Nathan, Melanie, and Abigail joined us for our “normal” family picture in our new house’s backyard.

Sarah for the family

It isnt always easy to find a natural pose for someone, and
It isn't always easy to find a natural pose for someone, so part of Christopher's "job" was to work with the pose.
Here we have Grandad and Grandma watching, Christopher getting his camera adjusted, Mary holding the light reflecter, Joseph taking other angle shots, and finally Jesse 🙂 .
Dad and Mom in front of a neat old doorway.
Dad and Mom in front of a neat old doorway.
Okay, so you just saw the previous picture, and heres what they look like from the angle of Christophers camera. Pretty amazing difference!
Okay, so you just saw the previous picture, and here's what they look like from the angle of Christopher's camera. Pretty amazing difference!
Alright, 1-2-3, smile! Anna stood nearby watching (she had hairbrushes and such items in her bag if we needed them)
"Alright, 1-2-3, smile!" Anna stood nearby watching (she had hairbrushes and such items in her bag if we needed them).
Peeking around the corner where Christopher was taking Josephs photo.
Peeking around the corner where Christopher was taking Joseph's photo.
A picture from Josephs camera.
A picture from Joseph's camera.
Getting the light reflector set just right...
Getting the light reflector set just right...
Together on the back dock of the feed store.
Together on the back dock of the feed store.

“O come, let us sing unto the LORD: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation”
(Psalms 95:1).

Abigail and Family

Hopefully you aren’t tired of Abigail pictures yet–here are a few more. 🙂 ~Sarah

Jesse and Abigail--uncles and aunts alike enjoy Abigail :-) .
Jesse and Abigail--uncles and aunts alike enjoy Abigail 🙂 .
Abigail and Anna--we celebrated Anna's birthday last week.
Abigail and Anna--we celebrated Anna's birthday last week, so here is Aunt Anna and Abigail.
Abigails face lit up when she saw my camera, and she delightedly reached for it.
Abigail's face lit up when she saw my camera, and she delightedly reached for it. I have a feeling she'll be pretty easy to photograph 🙂 .

“A merry heart doeth good like a medicine. . .” (Proverbs 17:22)

The Demise of the Acadian People

While we were on Prince Edward Island last month, we were provided a place to stay for several days at a beautiful Bed & Breakfast.

One gentleman we met at the B&B was a “boarder” (meaning he was there for a longer period of time than the typical guest and he was also provided a dinner meal). He was on PEI driving a truck during the potato harvest. As we talked, he shared that he is an Acadian.

I don’t think I had ever heard of the Acadian people before, but it was fascinating to hear of their background. They are a people group that had come from France back in the 1700’s to settle in Canada and the United States (those that settled in the US lived mostly in the Louisiana area and were called Cajuns). Because they maintained their own nationality/heritage, they weren’t fully accepted by the nations they were living in. They were eventually forced to leave Canada (during the French-Canadian war) and their lands given to others.

Long story short…

This man knew the heritage of his family, generation by generation, all the way back into the 1760’s when his family re-settled back into Canada.

Sadly, he shared that the Acadian people are no longer like what they were years ago. They are losing their identity as a people and their numbers are dwindling away. He was so proud of his heritage and people, but you could see a sadness in his eyes as he shared about the demise of his people and the reason why they are dwindling away.

This was why he told me the Acadian people are disappearing as a people: the Acadians no longer have large families with lots of children. He said that even one or two generations ago the family sizes were MUCH larger than they are now. He was one of 8, but he and his wife only had 4 children.

God’s Word tells us that children are an heritage from Him “children are an heritage of the LORD” (Psalms 127:3), and Jesus rebuked the disciples for preventing the little children from coming to Him, “suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 19:14) The word ‘forbid’ means to hinder, to withhold, to deny, to refuse. How many people today are forbidding children to come to Jesus by not allowing them a chance at life?

I believe that any nation which rejects God’s blessing of children is destined to become a weak and powerless nation, not only based upon what God’s Word says, but simple logic.

Even our own nation is beginning to suffer the consequences of rejecting children through smaller family size. So many seem blind to the real issues… For example, when was the last time you heard that the real problem with our Social Security and Medicare system (granted, this is apart from core systemic issues with both programs that God’s Word addresses!) is that families are not having enough children?

On the other hand: one of the highlights for all of us when we travel is being able to see all the children at the various conferences – and what a delight it was to see Abigail when we got back!

In Christ,
Christopher