It is now 1:00 a.m. and we just filled up with diesel in Albuquerque, New Mexico. About 30 miles west of Flagstaff the rain instantly turned to snow, and Dad drove through some very tough driving conditions with the snow and wind swirling around Uriah. Dad sought the Lord if we should continue or stop in Flagstaff, but the snow eventually lessened, and Dad knew if we stopped, we might have to stay in Flagstaff for awhile as they were expecting snow throughout the night and into the morning. We finally drove out of the snow, and into rain, and finally out of even the rain!
Uriah has been perfect for people to be able to sleep during the night. The plan is to continue driving on, with Dad and Christopher trading off driving.
The current plan is to go to Albuquerque, New Mexico, tonight, but we might even continue driving on. Depending on the weather and slow downs, we’ll likely arrive early in the morning. Thank you for your prayers. We are very grateful. We have been driving through strong winds, but Dad and Uriah are doing a good job :-).
After an amazing weekend conference (we’ll be reporting on that later), we are now heading 1900 miles home. We wanted to post a quick prayer request. Flagstaff, Arizona is expecting quite a bit of snow, and Dad is praying what route the Lord would have us take. Our hope is to continue with our planned route (through Flagstaff), and not stop in Kingman, Arizona tonight so that we can make it through Flagstaff and the snow before it get’s too heavy. It also appears we’ll be facing very strong and gusty winds.
Thank you for your prayers! We’ll update later today.
Serving Jesus, Sarah for the rest of the family
Driving out of Livermore this morning; we started out about 6:45 a.m.
We continue to be grateful for the Lord’s blessing on this trip. It’s funny, because although we’ve been gone two and a half weeks, it feels like much longer :-). Eight conferences done and two left: Yuba City tonight and the East Bay area this weekend. Our plan is to drive home in 3 days (beginning Sunday), via the southern route, instead of cold temperatures and snow going home I-80.
The last two conferences, San Luis Obispo area, and Fresno, went well. It’s amazing the little blessings: people who offer to help carry things out of the church after the conference, words of encouragement from those attending, a delicious dinner of beef stew and rolls in Fresno, etc. We had two weeks without colds, and then Saturday and Sunday, two of the family came down with colds. Yet, even in that, the Lord has shown Himself faithful. The two have felt miserable, but in no way has the trip been hindered, and the two are feeling better.
Except for our smoking descent the other night, Uriah has done very well this past week. We continue to be grateful for him, and the space he has provided. One concern we had at the beginning of the trip was the unknowns of being able to park him at each hotel (the guys camp out in the bus at night while we girls and Dad and Mom are in the hotel). Every night the Lord has provided a place to park Uriah at the hotel. What a blessing!
Joyfully His, Sarah for the rest of the family
Keeping Hearts session in Fresno.
Mary, working on her school, during a session.
Christopher lets the young people pick up some tracts after the Evangelism session, and I thought this was a good picture :-)!
Christopher talking with a young man after the sessions.
The second weekend conference is now over. Each conference has been such a blessing in its own way by the people we meet, the stories we hear, and the Lord Jesus working in lives. We arrived in the LA area with no traffic issues Thursday night. It was very picturesque to see the lights of the city as we drove out of the mountains.
Friday’s set up went well, and we had time to do a run through our songs. Our coordinators brought dinner for us. They also took us to a Vietnamese restaurant on Saturday evening after the conference for a cultural experience. None of us had eaten Vietnamese food before, so it was a treat.
(The LA church where the conference was held.)
There was a good group for the sessions Friday evening, and families continue to enjoy the music. Saturday was a busy day for everyone. Joseph, John, and Jesse help Dad, Mom, Christopher, and I get set up for our sessions, and then throughout the day, Joseph and John help Dad and Mom with any other speaking needs they may have.
Anna, Jesse, and Mary are a great book table team and run it very efficiently. At lunch, a sweet mom had provided a delicious meal for us, which was a special blessing. The message we shared throughout the weekend was extremely well received. We are grateful to each family who took the time to come to the conference this weekend. We pray you will experience fruit that will be eternal.
(Downtown LA as we went on the outskirts of it.)
We know many are praying and we are very grateful. As we were coming out of the mountains today on a very long steep grade, the boys said they smelled something burning. Dad took the next exit he could, and we pulled off. John hopped out, with Joseph close behind, and they said our front wheel was smoking! Most of us hurried out of the bus to see what was happening. After some examination, it was decided that the brakes had become very hot, and the buildup of oil on the rim from a leaking seal was smoking. Once Dad confirmed the other front wheel was also pretty hot, it meant that there was nothing seriously wrong with that wheel. Dad had slowed way down, used a lower gear, and pumped the brakes as we descended, but decided from then on, we would be going down even slower. We were grateful that we didn’t have a serious problem, and we started off again to help cool the wheels. Uriah continues to provide excitement to a trip that we’ve not experienced before!
Examining the smoking wheel!
Blowing dust as we drove toward San Luis Obispo area.
We woke up early Wednesday morning so that we could get started on our way to the Grand Canyon. The night before, John had noticed a notch in one of Uriah’s tires, and Dad felt since it was quite deep, we should have it looked at somewhere to see if we needed a new one. As we were approaching Flagstaff, Dad was able to call a tire place, that had been referred to him by a mechanic. We found the tire shop, the man looked at the tire, and he recommended that we replace both tag tires due to the “injury” and that fact that both were eight years old. The guy told Dad he was lucky (we know otherwise :-)) because they were the only warehouse in northern Arizona that had those tires, and since it was a cold day, he had men that could do it right then. We had our family Bible time while the tires were being changed. We knew if the process took too long, we wouldn’t be able to go to the Grand Canyon. But, around noon, we were on our way, and arrived at the Grand Canyon around 1:30.
It was an exciting feeling to walk to the edge of the South Rim and gaze at God’s amazing creation. The brochure said the Grand Canyon took millions of years to form, and yet even Jesse (13) could wonder why all or most rivers aren’t in canyons that deep. Christopher mentioned as a side note, scientists were not able to study the actual forming of the Grand Canyon, but they have been able to study the Little Grand Canyon at Mt. St. Helens which is 1/40th the size of the Grand Canyon and was formed in one day.
We spent some time taking in the scene and admiring it, before we walked along the trail. There were icy spots on the trail, but it was not windy, so we had a pleasant time together as we walked. It seemed the more you looked at the Grand Canyon, the more you could see. We marveled at all the different trails that could be hiked way down in the Canyon. We are very grateful that the Lord gave us those few hours; what a blessing.
We are now in Anaheim, California. Again, we felt the Lord’s hand driving here yesterday afternoon and evening. In spite of all the traffic, we didn’t “experience” even one slow down, which was wonderful. We are praying for this weekend’s conference and look forward to seeing some of you!
Serving Jesus, Sarah for the rest of the family
The beautiful Grand Canyon!
Most of the family looking out over the GC.
Dad and Mom
Joseph taking a picture of Christopher.
We asked someone to take this family picture.
The Maxwell family and ministry blog of Titus2.com.