Saturday 30 June 2007

Time for a Sponge Bath......

As you have heard me say before, my husband threw his back out and has been in significant pain for almost two weeks. 

He went to the chiropractor and felt better until he picked up something he shouldn't have and ended up hurting worse than before. There was a slight problem though, the doctor was on vacation and it would be a week before he could see him.

So being the loving, supportive, caring wife that I am I became his sweet nurse. Much like the picture above I was kind, always had a smile on my face and never became frustrated. 

Now there is just one problem with this picture. The problem is, the nurse described above is the one in my husband's dreams.

The nurse he ACTUALLY had was more like this one. Sometimes a little crabby, sometimes not compassionate and sometimes not understanding.

This nurse took care of her patient and tried to be cheerful but there were times she wanted to stick needles in her eyes and run into the night screaming or stick needles in HIS eyes!!!

However, my poor husband went to the chiropractor yesterday and today and he is SOOOmuch better. He can get around a lot better and even though he is very sore and tender he is not in excruciating pain anymore.

I guess "Nurse Bunker" can go on an extensive leave of absence. Maybe she should go to a spa for a facial (don't you think it would help!!!) and a massage. OOOOH, how wonderful.

Friday 29 June 2007

I'm Pooped......So...

No Friday Feast today. The kitchen is closed and I am pooped. I'm afraid you will have to go to McDonalds or just go eat at someone else's table. 

Now, I am going to rest!!!

Thursday 28 June 2007

Thursday Thirteen #68

Thirteen Things I Would Like to Do

1. Get an RV and travel across the country with our family. We are already talking about doing this.

2. Have a get together of the blogger gals on the east coast. Wouldn't that be FAB!! Anyone want to organize that????

3. Lose these blooming 50 pounds!!!

4. Bounce my granddaughter on my knee.......I will in September
 after she is born !

5. Get caught up on laundry and clean out the closet so it all fits!!

6. Have a family reunion for my Dad's side of the family. We haven't all gotten together in a while and I think we need to.

7. Take my mom to see my cousin, Freida in Mississippi. Freida is the daughter of my mom's older sister. They are very close and haven't seen each other in a while.

8. Go back to NYC and stay long enough to see a couple of plays and do some shopping! Maybe even stand outside the GMA studios with a goofy sign and wave!

9. Get a full body massage. I could REALLY use one.
10. Go back to Ireland and then to Scotland. Ireland is SO beautiful and I want to go to Scotland because my ancestors came from there.

11. Have my 'waddle' removed. (Definition: the floppy skin below my chin!!)

12. Go to Australia. We have friends there and I would love to go see them.

13. Learn to belly dance. Hah! Gotcha.........I just threw that one in for fun.

Sunday 24 June 2007

Sunday Seven #20

A weekly meme for giving thanks and/or for noting important events in our lives.
1. This week we found our that the heart of our soon to be born granddaughter, Zoe, is beating normally. We thank God for that and for those of you who were praying with us!

2. On the other hand my mother in law was told she has Parkinson's. However, it is mild and the doctor thinks will be easily controlled with medication. We are thankful to know the cause of her symptoms.

3. Hubby is still struggling with back pain. His body is telling him to de-stress! He is taking most of July off so hopefully that will do as much as anything to heal his back. PRAY!!!!

4. I find myself in disbelief that another pregnant woman has been murdered by the man in her life. How can a man kill his unborn child? Evil is alive and well.

5. We received some much needed rain and we are thankful. We need more. We are in a terrible drought.

6. I watched a news story about one of our local young men who just returned from duty in Afghanistan. He is an attorney and went there to help establish a new court system. His family were members of our church when he was young and it was so wonderful to see what a fine young man he has become and to hear of the wonderful things he did for the children of Afghanistan.

7. On a lighter note, poor Paris Hilton can't seem to find anyone to interview her when she gets out of jail. Isn't that a shame??

Saturday 23 June 2007

Our Work in Venezuela

My husband has a blog where he shares information about the Methodist work in Venezuela. As you know, this is very close to our hearts. Below is an article he posted a few weeks ago prior to the June session of seminary. It explains one of the reasons we are in Venezuela and why we started the seminary. I would invite you to visit his blog occasionally and see what God is doing in Venezuela.

June Seminary

Last night I was asked to meet with the Mission Committee of a church that has been very supportive of the work at the Seminario Wesleyano de Venezuela. They had questions for me to answer about the work of the seminary and their continuing support.

I struggled to find words adequate to describe the critical work of the Kingdom being done through the Wesley Seminary of Venezuela. Since I am so passionate about this work and so very much in love with the people of Venezuela, I am always amazed that others do not see the value as clearly as I do. However, I must realize that it is like the love for one's own child. Others may love your child, but they will never love him or her as much as you do.

After some time to think about it, here are some of the reasons for the passion we have for the work in Venezuela:

1. The greatest single need of the church in Venezuela is the need for trained and equipped pastors. For example, San Christobal is a city of 600,000 people. The evangelical (protestant) church recently celebrated 100 years in San Christobal. Yet the pastors estimate there are only 5-6,000 evangelicalChristians in San Christobal - after 100 years of ministry and dozens of churches. This scenario is repeated all across the nation. The level of training and the models of ministry embraced by the indigenous church have not been as effective as needed in reaching the lost of Venezuela. Pastors need and receive excellent quality education at the Seminary in a fashion that is relevant, affordable and accessible. The 90 students enrolled are getting a practical theological education at the undergraduate level that simply is not available in all of Venezuela.

2. The people of Venezuela are primarily a secular people. While most claim to be Roman Catholic, in fact a very small percentage of the people have any religious life. Secularism is the dominate religion of the population. This is a country that desperately needs the Gospel of Jesus Christ as it is presented in our best Wesleyan tradition. Through the seminary we are making a significant difference in the practice and effectiveness of the ministry of our students and many new congregations and missions have been started as a result of the education received at Wesley Seminary. These new congregations and missions are the very best way to reach the lost of this great country.

3. The United Methodist Church of Venezuela is in its infancy. Wesley Seminary is providing the educational and spiritual foundation needed for the establishment of a strong and effective Conference touching the entire nation and impacting the church in all of Latin America. Venezuela is a strategic country in Latin America for many reasons. We desperately need a strong United Methodist Conference in that country. All the work of writing the Discipline and organizing the Conference has been led by the staff of the Seminary. This is even more critical given the political upheavals in the region.

4. The North American Church needs the enrichment provided by partnering with the church in Venezuela. Pastors here get embittered if the local church does not pay a minimum compensation package of about $60,000 (total cost to the church). Many pastors in Venezuela earn less than $4,000 a year. Churches here feel entitled to all the facilities, programming, budget and staff of a well established congregation. Many congregations in Venezuela have bi-vocational pastors, no other staff,minuscule budgets and have to meet in homes or rented garages. Yet they are joyful and thankful for God's blessings and generous with others less fortunate. We need a good dose of that in the US. Taking American professors, pastors and lay leaders to Venezuela to help with seminary allows them to be touched by some of the most dedicated servants of Christ I have ever known.

5. The work of the Seminary is a long-term commitment. Most churches use a shotgun approach to Global Missions investing limited time and money in many different places, resulting in very small long term gains. That is how I learned to do mission work and perpetuated that pattern for many years. However, a long term partnership with an indigenous church in another country resulting inspiritual and theological formation of the leadership of that church for several generations has far greater lasting impact for the sake of the Kingdom. Therefore, the Seminary needs many US partnerchurches to support and expand this great ministry. We do not need to cut back or lose any of the current support. We need to increase and expand the support for this great work.

One of the ways of looking at the ROI (Return on Investment) of mission dollars focuses on immediate gains of professions of faith or new members or churches. We certainly have those results in Venezuela. However, those are all immediate and measurable results and if they are the only criteria of measurement of effectiveness, we will miss the greater significance of the ministry of the SeminarioWesleyano de Venezuela. That is like measuring the effectiveness of a church solely on Professions of Faith. No District Superintendent in North Georgia has said more about the need for our own churches to be more effective in measurable ways, such as average worship attendance, professions of faith, net new members, etc. However, as a pastor for over 30 years, I know those are only part of the work. They are tangible. The intangible includes the spiritual growth of the pastors, staff and laity of a congregation, the primary outward focus of a local church, the holiness of heart and life of the people of the church, the generosity of the congregation toward others, the sense of divine call evidenced in the life of the laity and lay leaders of the congregation. The raising up of new mature lay and clergy leadership is of critical importance. It is not measurable, except anecdotally. However, it cannot be over-valued.

Finally, please pray for the seminary as we meet in June. David, Dean of the Seminary, will be teaching an Old Testament Course and I will be teaching a worship course, "Worship that Transforms." Also, please prayerfully consider how you can support this critical work.

Friday 22 June 2007

Friday Feast - Have You Washed Your Hands???

Name a funny habit you have.
I talk to myself when I am alone. But my father told me it was OK as long as I didn't answer myself!!!!
If you could instantly know how to play a musical instrument, which one would you pick?
Piano. I took lessons for two years as a child but hated to practice and finally convinced my parents they were wasting their money! Now, I would love to be able to play.
How long is your hair?
Usually it is right below my ears. Right now it brushes my collar but it needs cutting!
Main Course
When was the last time you forgave someone, and who was it?
Probably my hubby for some silly something!!
What is your favorite kitchen appliance?
My George Foreman Grill. I love, love, love it! It is great for cooking stuff for two people.

Thursday 21 June 2007

Thursday Thirteen #67

A Random T13

1. My orthopedist has released me and doesn't want to see me for two years!!! YEA!

2. Our DIL went to her doctor yesterday and little Zoe's heart is beating normally. Praise God.

3. The new season of "The Closer" started on Monday night. I love this show!

4. Last night I babysat for our DIL's three nieces, ages 12, 10 and 3. The three year old sat in my lap part of the evening and gave me some great hugs and kisses! You know I didn't like that!!

5. Hubby's back is getting better, little by little. God help me!!!

6. We finally got some much needed rain and we are very thankful. Today the sun is shining and the sky is blue and it is a gawgeous day!

7. DIL's parents are here....permanently!! Her father is going to be pastoring a Hispanic congregation and we are all happy they are here.

8. I heard Dennis Miller say this last night: "If Rosie O'Donnell becomes the host of 'The Price is Right' they will have to change the name to 'The Price is Left'!!! Now that's funny!

9. I am so distressed by the news of pregnant women missing from their homes. One was found murdered and the other has not been found. What is going on?

10. I am reading Mary Higgins Clark's latest book, "I Heard That Song Before". It's pretty good but not as good as her previous works.

11. We (the three girls and I) watched "Toy Story" and "Toy Story 2" last night. I had forgotten how much fun those movies were. I loved it!

12. Did you hear about the person who wanted to change their identity? The only problem was the identity they chose to be was "Herman Munster". Needless to say, that didn't last too long!!!

13. I can't think of anything else to say.....I am completely out of random ideas. That's my story and I'm sticking to it!