We’re now in Carlsbad, New Mexico – a first for most of us, with the exception of Dad and Mom.
Last night’s conference in Waco was a blessing. We were delighted in seeing two families we have known through e-mail: one we’ve met before, and the other we hadn’t met in person. What a blessing to be able to see them.
Uriah continues to hang in there. We stopped at a truck repair place today, because Dad was concerned about some oil leaking from a wheel hub and wanted to check it out. A man was very helpful and even came out to look at it and give Dad a little informative lesson (tonight we saw we lost that hubcab – oops!). Mom is a pro at making lunch, and the bus makes it very easy to spread out a bit. We wrote postcards to our nursing home friends today; Mom even has a system for that.
We’re excited to be able to see Carlsbad Caverns tomorrow morning. We normally don’t have time to sight-see on these trips, but we are getting up early and will drive late to be able to see the Caverns. We’ll be sure to post pictures later.
Only for Jesus, Sarah
The church in Houston (with Uriah :-)).
Dad and John finishing up at the truck repair stop.
Dad and Mom speaking last night in Waco.
Mary-with a New Mexico sunset in the background!
Jesse-working on school
Mary-writing a postcard.
Motoring down the road in Uriah.
Lunch time! 🙂
New Mexico Sunset
PS – Special thanks to Anna for picking out the pictures and working with them :-)!
Thank you for your continued prayers. Uriah has had some issues, but he’s still running. We discovered the air conditioner didn’t work, so we had several warm days (it didn’t feel like January for temperatures to be in the upper 70’s and humid!). But, we’re glad for a cool front, and the pleasant temperatures inside. Uriah also had an engine leak, but the boys were able to get it stopped. Please keep praying that Uriah will be able to keep on without any major repairs.
We drove to the Houston area yesterday afternoon, and we arrived safely late in the afternoon. For our first evening conference, the set up went smoothly! The coordinators graciously provided us a wonderful dinner. After three meals of sandwiches, we were very grateful for the home-cooked meal.
The sessions went well last night, and hearts were extremely receptive. We enjoyed our evening in the Houston area.
We arrived safely tonight in Ennis, Texas. The last few days have been very busy in preparing for this trip, so it was nice to just climb into Uriah and rest. It was a delight to start out with having church with our dear friends at the nursing home, and we left from there. Uriah handled very well today, and Christopher even took a turn driving so that Dad could take a nap. We will drive the rest of the way to the Houston area tomorrow, where we’ll be doing an evening conference.
Thank you for your prayers. Dad has said that this is a trip of many unknowns due to our new transportation. We’ll have lots of new opportunities to trust the Lord each day.
Looking forward to meeting many of you over the next few weeks!
Saturday in Leavenworth, Kansas brought about eight inches of snow throughout the day and evening. Steve was praying and looking to the Lord Jesus for direction concerning our trip to Gypsum, Kansas to play music for their Sunday evening Christmas service. This trip weighed heavy on his heart since he had no idea how well Uriah would handle in the snow. Steve was keenly aware that in the event of a problem, we wouldn’t all get out and give a push to get moving again. He also was concerned as to whether there would be sufficient heat to keep everyone comfortable.
Sunday morning Steve decided we would start out, and take it one step at a time, depending on the Lord, to enable us to take the next step. The first step was just getting Uriah out of the drive and loaded. To our joy, step-by-step, God gave grace.
Our plan was to take our instruments in to our nursing home church and play for them during our Sunday morning service and then head on to Gypsum, about four hours away. Grandad and Grandma and Nathan and Melanie were also joining us for the day with Nathan playing lead guitar for our music. Our hearts rejoiced as we watched the delight in our nursing home friends’ faces as they listened to the music, old hymns, and Christmas carols.
Not only was it Uriah’s first ministry trip, but it was the first time we have been asked to come to a church to primarily sing. Until about a month ago, we didn’t have any Christmas hymns that we could play and sing, but the children had worked diligently at arranging and practicing Christmas music by themselves and then as a family. Both Nathan and Christopher shared between songs – giving an evangelistic message with personal examples that I thought was very powerful. After the music, Steve preached for about a half an hour encouraging those listening to evaluate their personal walks with the Lord Jesus and to hunger for the Word of God.
The church welcomed us, fed us a delicious dinner, and invited us to join them for their Christmas fellowship after the service.
The bus did well on our snow-packed city streets and the slushy Interstates. It was very comfortable to ride in, except for the driver’s seat, which we hope to replace soon. The boys had furnished Uriah with an old recliner chair for Mom, an old sofa and love seat we had in the garage, plus a few dinette seats that came out of another RV. In addition, they put in a set of bunk beds and a queen bed. When pregnant Melanie needed to stretch, she could stand up and walk around. When Grandad needed to rest his back, he could go lie down. The beds were all filled when we drove home from 9:40 p.m. to 1:00 a.m., allowing some to curl up on a sofa or bench seat to sleep, while others talked the whole way home!
Our hearts are overwhelmed with gratitude to the Lord Jesus for His provision for our transportation needs. There is a great deal of work that has to be done, but it is our desire that Uriah serves the Lord faithfully with us for many years to come.
Trusting In Jesus, Teri
John carrying things out to Uriah Sunday morning.
Mary, Anna, and Nathan at the nursing home.
Nursing home service. (Thank you, Melanie, for taking the picture!)
As we approach Kansas City (only a few hours away) the temperature is dropping and it has been steadily raining. Ice is forming on the exterior surfaces of the bus and we have seen numerous salt trucks. The interstate is not yet slippery, but the temperature in Kansas City is 24, and our weather-tracking web page was reporting a number of accidents on various roads and interstates.
From dark and narrow mountain roads to icy interstates, it looks like Uriah is doing very well on our first trip with him!
Although, the heat in the main cabin of the bus hasn’t been working, so it has been a little chilly. It’s a good thing the heat in the driver’s area is functioning!
We started out in the bus by driving about 40 miles through curvy, narrow, and steep (9% grades) roads through the mountains until we got to the Interstate. I guess they figure that if you can drive a bus on roads like that the interstate’s will be easy…
We did stop for diesel at a Flying J. The bus has a larger gas tank than the van, actually, it is significantly larger. The van held about 30 gallons, while the bus holds 230. Filling that tank is an exciting experience.
Dad and I are now between Lexington and Louisville (both in Kentucky) on I-64 driving west – which means we have about 550 more miles to go. We spent most of the day at Easter Bus finalizing details and checking the bus out.
In the past, with one of our older vans, we have had to stop a number of times in different places and have tires balanced. It was funny to find ourselves in the bus, which has brand new tires in the front, stopping to also have those balanced.
We were finished at the tire center and on the interstate by about 6:00 p.m.
I’m not sure how much later we’ll keep driving (it’s a little after midnight) until we stop for some rest. What is nice about the bus is that there is plenty of room for sleeping bags, cushions, and air mattresses in the back.
We would appreciate prayer as we continue traveling. We’ve driven through rain in the mountains and there is a chance of freezing rain during the day on Saturday as we drive west.
In Christ, Christopher
The Maxwell family and ministry blog of Titus2.com.