Wednesday, July 23, 2014


Last week our church hosted a Vacation Bible School week.  For the most part, the snacks were kept to the old fashioned cookies and lemonade. I say for the most part. One day they were served popsicles.  Two out of three days were actually held outside.  Rain drove them the other days. 

Of course, the congregation went a bit overboard with the cookies; particularly the home made ones. Last year we lost our minds and participated in outdoor physical activities.  We did survive but just by the hair of Dan’s chinny chin chin!

It was loads of fun though.  This year I decided I would serve snacks.  That worked out for me. (Well, except for the sampling of those cookies that were “accidentally” broken.)  I took particular delight when the teen aged workers stumbled in for their breaks. As they bemoaned their exhaustion we managed to offer polite sympathy. That’s why we are on this side of the cookie this year!

Seriously, I am so proud of the youth. They worked so hard and faithfully.  Vacation Bible School has eternal benefits. Have you ever met anyone who has not attended at least one VBS in their lifetime?  They are few and far between.

I have fond memories of Kool-Aide and tea cakes. There were macaroni shells, cigar boxes and silver spray paint for craft projects. The crafts have changed a bit over the years.  I was particularly happy when the kids favored the old fashioned tea cakes. After explaining what they were. Sigh. 

Each participant’s contribution was of great value to a child. There was teaching, missions, music, crafts, evangelism, cookies and servers.  Yes, even serving cookies has eternal value.  Especially served with heaping helpings of smiles and hugs!

…..Let the children come to me; do not hinder them for to such belongs the kingdom of God. Mark 10:14


Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Nana Boat

When we first started having grandbabies we purchased a van fully equipped with factory installed baby seats.  I loved that van.  Dan had to pry it away from me.  It had become so not so gently worn, he was embarrassed for me to drive it.  One of our fondest memories was when our first grandchild named the van.  It was not a van she insisted.  It was a bus. Her mom explained since she saw the kindergarten bus/van everyday, all vans were buses to her. She then dubbed it Nana’s Bus.  The name has stuck.

I spent a great part of last week cleaning the boat.  She has had a rough time this winter.  It was hard on all of us. But she had to weather the storms without shelter in the cold icy waters of the lake.  We had not christened her with a name.  Since she has been through so much we decided to give her a special one.  She is now officially, “The Nana Boat”.

The covers we have for her did take a large brunt of the cruelty she sustained.  Some were torn to shreds.  Some I was able to repair.  Others the more I mended the more rips I found.  They were eventually discarded. One new seat cover has been ordered.  It is not exactly made to order but as Dan pointed out, “It matches the rest of her seat covers.”  Well, a girl does need to look well put together.
Of course the largest and the most expensive cover is the one that needs to be replaced.  I said to myself, “Self, you could beg help from your sisters.” They are super gifted in any kind of design and sewing; particularly upholstery. They could whip together anything The Nana Boat needs in no time at all. But, I certainly wouldn’t want to impose. I am a grown up.  I am not a baby. I can deal with this.

Oh who am I kidding?  “WAAH” I want my sisters!!!!!

That day when evening came, He said to His disciples, "Let us go over to the other side."  Leaving the crowd behind, they took Him along, just as He was, in the boat.  There were also other boats with Him.  A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped.  Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion.  The disciples woke Him and said to Him, "Teacher, don't you care if we drown?  He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, "Quiet! Be still!"The wind died down and it was completely calm.  He said to His disciples, "Why are you so afraid?  Do you still have not faith?:They were terrified and asked each other, "Who is this?  Even the wind and the waves obey Him!"
Mark 4:35-41

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Unwavering Faith

Several weeks ago our friend Millie requested prayer for wisdom in a satellite office/home. Little did she know intercession on the behalf of her family would take such a critical turn. Shortly after her first request for prayer I starting having a reoccurring dream.

In the dream Millie was standing inside small window looking out.  Everything was in shades of gray as far as the eye could see.  Millie opened the window with a big smile, humming seemingly oblivious to all the doom and gloom surrounding her.  She began to water her three dead plants inside her window flower box. As soon as the water began to pour out, everything turned to bright colors. The house, the landscape, the skies, even the pitiful looking plants burst into large beautiful blooms. 

That is so much like her.  She has the faith to hold on to all the promises of God.  Regardless of what things look like in the natural, she has that special measure of the gift of faith. 

The Lace family has gone through some serious trials lately.  With friends around the world standing with them in faith; I have no doubt the miracle prayed for is on its way!

Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.

Hebrews 11:1

Saturday, July 5, 2014


Can it possibly be?  It is July 5th?  At the end of the week Dan and I keep asking each other where the days went.  Our friend Henry chided a new comer to the area when he declared he was going to buy a kayak and spend his days fishing.  Henry said he was going to do the same thing when he moved here. Years later, he has been fishing twice.  Life is too busy.
This beautiful table made with donated cedar scraps.
Yesterday we had planned to participate in grilling and serving a Fourth of July meal to at the men’s shelter. The meal was open to anyone in the community. We were sure we would wrap that up quickly and have plenty of time to make it to the lake.  It was late afternoon before we returned home. Exhausted, emotionally and physically but so grateful to have a home to return to.  We are forever reminded, "Oh but by the Grace of God there go we." We would take a quick nap and play.  Three hours later we awoke to darkened skies. 
From a discarded chair. They painted the frame and rebuilt the chair from an old pallet.
My husband works there full time.  He loves it.  I am not so noble.  It tugs at my heart strings too much.  I want to fix it all. I did well yesterday. In the sense I did not cry this time. My heart really breaks for the mentally and physically challenged.  Dan and I spoke of how they managed to survive on the streets.  No doubt they are easy prey to predators.
Residents proudly display their "Fellowship Garden:"
 The lady who started and directs this ministry is a very special lady.  She does a great job in the administration of the ministry.  Her gift of mercy is exceptional. Her job is not an easy one. It is fraught with stress and disappointment.  Yet, fueled with love for these men, she carries on with all she has.
Grilling up hot dogs and hamburgers!
This year the residents planted a garden. In addition, they are beginning a wood working shop.  The need for job skills and self esteem is vital in restoring these men. They are so excited. They are working in a warehouse without electricity and plumbing. Powered by a generator they have turned out beautiful pieces. All the tools and scrap wood has been donated.  A large portion of their projects are made from discarded pallets!

One gentleman summoned it best. He said to Dan, “We are taking reclaimed materials making them into something new, beautiful and useful; just as God has reclaimed us making some of us beautiful and useful again.”

You keep a dry eye.  I double dog dare you!

Samaritan Ministries of Hot SpringsInc
 131 Sanford St, Hot Springs, AR 71901
(501) 321-2888

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.  II Corinthians 5:17