Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Great For God, by David Shibley, is a collection of missionary stories. I am unsure of the target audience, but the reading level is fairly low and each story is only 3 or 4 pages. The introduction of the book states that the intention was to chose a handful of missionaries to include in this time capsule in order that their stories might live on- which I agree, they should. I love collections of missionary stories...
Because of the length the author went to in sharing how he picked which missionary to write about and which to leave out, I was expecting to read about the unknown servants. I had my heart set on learning a little about the lives of those that haven’t been recorded before, the never-before-heard “heroes of the faith”. Perhaps I am not the greatest person to make this judgement call, but I was disappointed to see the same people I’ve already read about before. Not to lessen their great works for God or to say that they aren’t worthy of being included, by any means. I was simply hoping for a different handful. 
One missionary the author did include and I hadn’t heard of was a man named H.B. Garlock. I enjoyed reading about his story because he was from Connecticut and met Jesus as a young man. He served the people of Liberia, Ghana and Malawi and faced the kind of dramatic moments read about in the Bible. That’s what I’m talking about! I was also excited to learn about what H.B. did in his later years of life....but I will leave that to you to find out on your own!
Another missionary story that I knew about previously but hadn’t seen documented in print before was WIlliam Cameron Townsend and his ministry called JAARS(Jungle Aviation and Radio Service), which collaborated with Wyclife Bible Translators. JAARS will remain near and dear to my heart because their North American arm, which was in existence up until a few years ago, served my family. JAARS helped relocate ministry offices and missionaries personal items around the world. When JAARS had to refocus their efforts, one of their own men wanted to keep serving ministries and missionaries in North America, so he renamed the branch to Missionary Transport, Inc. One of their trucks and drivers served our family when we relocated from Virginia to Connecticut. When his truck arrived for us to load it, I could see the JAARS sticker underneath the Missionary Transport, Inc. label on the truck. This made my heart happy. 
Overall, this was a good book. I will keep it around to use as a source of missionary stories for my kids. I have an electronic copy and am thankful for that, as I doubt I would give up any bookshelf real estate for it. 

You can pick up a copy for yourself at 

Thanks New Leaf for a chance to review your book. I was given a free copy in exchange for my honest opinion of the book! These comments are my own. 

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Noise = Quietness

You can see the water and food splatters and the food-y finger prints.

I have been staring at this folded up sheet of paper on my kitchen window sill for a few months now. I have read it multiple times a day, trying to "wait" for the "Word to renew me". One of my favorite things to do is sleep and somehow I connected "renew" with sleep. They seem like synonyms to me... doesn't that sound logical to you?

This verse also made me think of the other verse that says I will be "cleansed by the washing of  water with the Word" (Ephesians 5:26) since I was often washing dishes while I re-read this verse...

But then it struck me last week.

I had skipped the first part of the passage every time I read it. I skimmed over it in desperate attempts at a desire for renewal....or in my mind, rest.

"You are a my place of quiet retreat..."

When the kids are running laps through the dining room, kitchen, hallway, living room, dining room, kitchen, ....over and over.... God remains my place of quietness.

When the commercials are louder than the news, the dog is asking to be let out, the timer is going off in the kitchen.....God remains my place of silence.

When the phone is ringing and my mind is cluttered and weighty.....God remains my place of retreat.

Despite all the noise-literal, emotional, life- around me, I can find quietness in God.

Since I can find my quietness in Him, I must not need to wait for the literal quiet I seek. I can meet with him right in the chaos of my day.

Oddly enough, when I fight to find my quiet retreat within Him no matter the noise level around me, His words do renew me.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

The 7th Year- Week 13: Put Your Thinkin' Cap On

She mentions that our “God-concepts inform beliefs, and beliefs influence attitudes, emotions, and behaviors. The latter- the attitudes, emotions, and behaviors- are followers, not leaders. They are responders, not initiators. As such, they are manifestations of something deeper, of our working, applied belief system. (Chole, 7th Year, Week 13)

You know it’s deep-thinker week in the 7th Year project when you have to read the same sentence 3 or 4 times. Go ahead, re-read it again, too. Speed reading is useless. 

So, my deepest, gut-level concept of God will drive my beliefs of who God is. And my belief about who God really is will direct my thoughts, feelings, and actions. 
I better have my God-concept right. Better yet, I better allow God to define himself for me. Simply trusting that God is who he says he is should be enough. But we are fickle creatures...allowing our attitudes, emotions, behaviors to sway our God-concept....He is constant and faithful to remind us each day/moment/season who he truly is. 
My family began to wonder why my phone made robot sounds at 8am, noon, 4pm and 8pm for 7 days. Even the girls began to wonder what was going on. Emma started imitating the robotic sounds. After a day or two, I let them in on the secret. Each time my alarm went off, I quickly documented a God-descriptor at that very moment. Every four hours, I captured what I thought about God....then and there. 
I saved the list on my phone and was surprised at how multi-faceted our God truly is. (Duh, Lindsay) In all actuality, we will never know how multi-faceted God is. This assignment shows me that my view of God has so much to do with what I am doing, thinking, feeling, facing at that moment. Yes, I trust God. Yes, I believe God is real and alive. But I can also see that God is all of these things: 
Creator of bugs
Awaken-er (this one must have been in the morning!)
A proud dad
Rest (Morning, again)
Nourisher (Lunchtime)
Speaker (office hours, prepping for a sermon)
Saturator (rainy day)
Banquet preparer (dinner time, ha.)
Educator (homeschool morning)
Knower (a lonely moment)
Muscle-giver (After a workout)
Husband, by the agricultural definition- one who gives care, manages (after a conversation with someone about why the field of caring for animals is called husbandry)
Try it. Set an alarm to go off at intervals throughout your day and see what comes to mind when you think about God. Be creative. Be a word-smith....make them up if you  have to. 
I remain grateful for this 7th Year experience. If you want to learn more about it, go to

Thursday, May 3, 2012

The 7th Year-Week 10: Word Cloud

"A word heard is not enough." According to the Parable of the Sower, the difference "in the fourth soil/soul was that beyond hearing, it accepted the Word." (Chole, referring to Mark 4:20) 

A verse memorized is not enough. 
A service attended is not enough. 
A behavior modified is not enough. 
A list of rules followed is not enough. 

This concept has struck me deeply this week because I know so many people that know truths found in the Bible, yet aren't applying it. Some are ignoring it. Some are connecting it with hurtful people and trying to forget it. Some are just choosing an "easier" path. None of us get it right all the time, I get that. But my heart breaks for people that know and turn away...never applying the grace, mercy, forgiveness, healing, truth found in the same passages they memorized as a child. 

 "God, I think you are_____."

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Coffee Roasting

If you know me (or have read my blog for any length of time), you know about my love for coffee. You might also know that my wonderful husband roasts coffee for us at home. Home roasting allows us to get a wonderful quality coffee for a great price. We aren't after cheap coffee or spending loads of money on coffee. We are after the best cup of coffee we can afford and this is the way we've found to make that happen. Thankfully, Gil enjoys the process and has done the best he can without the roaster he would like. After hearing of this, several people are intrigued by this process, so I decided to share! Here goes....

When this box lands on our doorstep, we feel loved...even though Gil just ordered it himself a few days prior.  

Prior to roasting, this is what the green coffee bean looks like. 

Admiring the goodness. 

Loving the goodness. 

Posing with the goodness. Until this moment, I hadn't realized how closely his red hoodie matched the kitchen walls. 

Each bag of beans are different and labeled according to the country and farm where it was grown. The label also includes a description of what the bean should taste like when roasted properly. 

Gil ordered 3 different beans this time. 

Oh, I can't wait for morning! 

Here's the set up: box fan facing outside, popcorn popper, mesh strainer, large bowl to catch chafe. Kids allergy medicine not necessary for this process. 

Fan on. Popper on. 

Beans go in, 3 Gil-handfuls per batch. 

Popper lid on, which blows most of the chafe into the bowl. 

We wait while it roasts. 

And have time to take a few silly pictures. 

Those blue eyes. 

After roasting. 

Unplug roaster, pour beans into mesh strainer for a quick cool. 

Shake to help cool as fast as possible. 

Look at the goodness. 

Smell the goodness. Oh wait, you can't. Sorry. 

He's been through a number of popcorn poppers, but this particular brand and model is the one that's held on the longest. If you ever, and I mean EVER, see one of these at a thrift store, BUY it! 

And the beautiful bean. 

No, I was not paid by for all of this free advertising. Would have been nice though, eh? This is just how we do it~