Monday, November 27, 2006

Let it Snow!

It started snowing this evening! Woohoo! Daisy and I enjoyed some eggnog in Christmas mugs and watched the snow coming down. :)

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Saturday, November 25, 2006

...this our hymn of grateful praise.

"Give thanks to the Lord for He is good,
His love endures forever."
Psalm 136

One of the things I am thankful for the most is family. And even though the Suko's may not actually be family by blood we are still family in Christ. It was such a blessing to spend Thanksgiving at the Suko's this year, as we have done for over 7 years now. When they learned that first Thanksgiving that we had no family to spend Thanksgiving with here they warmly welcomed us into their home. We have many stories from the past years of Thanksgiving spent with them. The most famous I would have to say is when my brother found a bottle of mace on one of the end tables. He picked it up, curious as to what it was, and then it went off. I was the first to feel the effects since I was sitting right there. All I remember is I felt a horrible burning in the back of my throat and then a feeling like my throat had been constricted. I started coughing and then slowly it moved through the room and started to effect everyone else. Those of us effected went outside to get some fresh air. It did soon pass and we were back inside enjoying the evening. Every Thanksgiving since then we always reminisce about that time.

This year was bitter sweet because of the loss of Gabe in Iraq this last August. But God has been so good to the Suko family and Hannah and given them peace and comfort. And what a joy it was to watch Gabe's little son Gabriel playing and laughing away. We are so thankful that the Lord gave Hannah this precious baby boy to carry on Gabe's name and to give her comfort.

Hannah cooked the turkey this year since her parents were in Ukraine on a mission trip. (They just arrived home yesterday.) My mom made the delicious rolls she makes every year and two pumpkin pies. I also made two pumpkin pies and yams. We also had green bean casserole, mashed potatoes and gravy and pickled beats. Needless to say we all were stuffed by the end of the night. The Suko boys held a little competition between them. They weighed themselves before they ate, wrote down those numbers and then at midnight they were going to weigh themselves again to see who had gained the most weight. Throughout the evening they discussed which foods were the most dense and would cause someone to gain lots of weight. The rest of us felt sick just from thinking of stuffing ourselves that much! I still have not heard who won. When we left that night Caleb was in the lead with 6 pounds gained!! Whew! :)

Here is video and some pictures I made of the evening. Enjoy! :)

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"For the Beauty of the Earth"

For the beauty of the earth,
for the glory of the skies,
for the love which from our birth
over and around us lies:

Lord of all to Thee we raise
This our hymn of grateful praise.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Daniel and Mary Beth

My cousin Mary Beth and her fiance Daniel have started a new blog together called "It's (Finally) Official" about their engagement. They have just posted their first post. Check it out!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Young Adult Game Night

This last Friday evening we had the young adult group from church over at our house for game night. We have a game night every other Friday night. Everyone brings their favorite snack food and game. This night we played "Cranium" which is a bunch of different categories. There is a drawing category, an acting category, a trivia category and one other I can't remember. This is the first game we played then we ended with "Pictionary". We really wanted to play "Cut-throat UNO" but someone forgot to bring the cards. We had such a fun time though and we ended up sitting around talking until 11pm. Hannah brought little Gabriel and he was awake for a little while. He really enjoys eating food he can gnaw on and Hannah gave a him a stick of celery and he enjoyed chewing on that for a while. She said he also chewing on hard crusts of bread. He will be distracted for a good amount of time with those. Eventually it was his bedtime so Hannah set up a play-pen in out room for him to sleep in.

Sorry, the video is a little dark!

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Pen Pulpit

Proverbs 2:1-5

Every sensitive Christian has at least a modicum of desire to know the heart and mind of God. Wherever that desire is present, God will fulfill it. Proverbs 2:1-5 deals with the question, “How may I acquire an intelligent knowledge of God; a knowledge upon facts; facts that lead to discernment and understanding?” In contrast we see the unbeliever’s attitude toward God in I Corinthians 2:14.

The Starting Place:

True wisdom and knowledge begins and ends with truth - the intake of truth from the Word of God and outflow of truth through the child of God (Matthew 4:4).

The Process for Attaining Wisdom:

1. Take God’s Word personally - v. 1
• We receive it - Luke 8:13
• We treasure it - Matthew 13:3-8, 18-25

2. Pay attention to God’s Word - v. 2
• Make your ear attentive. Force yourself to hear what God is saying. Matthew 11:15

3. Pray over God’s Word - v. 3
• Pray for illumination which shows a deep inner hunger for a knowledge of the truth.

That hunger is expressed in fervent petition to God for illumination. James 1:5

4. Really dig into God’s Word - v. 4
• Prayer alone does not bring satisfaction and illumination but must be accompanied
by personal persistent Bible study.

Four requirements for hunting treasure are:

1. The promise of discovery.

2. Having the necessary equipment.

3. Having the necessary will and desire.

4. Applying personal energy and effort in using the equipment.

The fruit of our efforts are:

“Then you will understand the fear of the Lord” - v. 5a

“And find the knowledge of God” - v. 5b

The Bottom Line - You get out of a thing what you put into it!

Beloved, how diligent are we in searching out God’s truths?

Love to all.

--Pastor Charles Covington 1933-2006

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Decorating Autumn Cookies with Daisy

My daughter Daisy and I enjoyed an afternoon of decorating sugar cookies yestruday. The cookies were cute into autumn shapes. I bought vanilla frosting and then separated it two ways and dyed one orange and one yellow. I also bought candy corn, chocolate sprinkles and mini chocolate chips. We chatted and watched the movie "Finding Nemo" while we worked. And of course we snatched a few of the decorations here and there and ate them. :)

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Thursday, November 16, 2006

Alaska Story from my Big-Bro Ben

"Yooooooeeeeee! All!

It was a cold night that night. I could tell it was at least -40 below by the sting in my lungs.

Exhaling, smoke drops straight to the ground, a testimony as to what might happen to a poor soul if he don't keep movin'. The cherry the only thing to keep the bare flesh on my fingers warm, becomes my solitary friend this night. Times are tough these days and the money don't come easy. You'd think in a climate like this some sort of backup heating system would be in place, but once again, greed, a lust for money, and no patience for trueness leaves me alone with a single Toyo. Outside two 50's effortlessly float on a makeshift gravity stand, bridged by an eight inch copper run right through the cabin wall into the back of the 'Yo. Like I said before, the money was not as green as the night was cold, and the tanks they were a hair from 'rigor'. A steady flow of exhaust puffed it's way out of the side of the cabin I called my home.

After about two more puffs of my ciggy, and the cherry says goodbye, the stove starts to cough and sputter, until it too puffs no more. What's a guys to do in a perdicamant like this you ask? Well below zero and no heatin' fuel to boot, just enough auto fuel to get there and buy the deisel, but not enough cash to buy more gas to put in the truck to get it home where it is so desparately needed.

"Well." I thought out loud, "Tonight is the night we separate the boys from the men!" Seein' as how my boys were gettin' so dern cold, it felt like they were going to separate from my man!

I stepped into the warm cabin, crawled into my warm cozy bed. It was about 70 above in the cabin at this point. But I knew that in just a few short hours, this would not be so. When I woke up the next morning it was -2 below zero in that cabin, and -55 below outside. Cold enough to know it because all of the water in my kitchen was frozen almost solid in thier 5 gallon jugs. The refridgerator had become a re-warmerator. Little did I know during the course of all of this scientific mumbo jumbo, phenominomal hooie, my mush puppies had knocked over thier only source of heat, a 125watt heat lamp, which in turn scared them out of thier kennel and into the cold.

I went to go open the front door and as I did, there they were, bundled up together like two little loaves of bread, covered from head to tail in inch thick ice which had formed on their fur from the moisture in thier tiny little bodies. This in effect created a moisture lock wich actually kept them relatively warm."

My brother lived up in Alaska for a little while. He loved it there but we are glad to have him home again. He is a real hoot! :)

Daisy's Fifth Grade Photo

Isn't she pretty!? She is growing up so fast!

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Congratulations Mary Beth & Daniel

Yesturday I got an excited phone call from my cousin Mary Beth that she is engaged! She called me twenty minutes after Daniel popped the question! I am so excited for them! They are perfect for eachother. Welcome to the family Daniel (even though we already consider you family)! :) I love you guys!

Pen Pulpit


Matthew 5:13

As the Church is called “light” to reveal and to expose, it is called “salt” to penetrate and convict. The very nature of God is injected into the Church - the Body of Christ! This Church is called “a new man created in Christ Jesus in righteousness and true holiness” (Ephesians 4:24). God’s own life in and through the Church penetrates society in a variety of ways when the Church is functioning properly. We serve as a deterrent to evil, an antiseptic, and seasoning.

Mark 9:50 declares that we are to have salt in ourselves. We are salt; therefore we are to function as salt, demonstrating the righteousness and holiness of God in a sensitive relationship to others. In an unrighteous and unholy society, this kind of penetration will be felt. You cannot pour salt into an open wound without having severe repercussions!

I cannot think of a more effective way for the Church to function as salt than in her commitment to Jesus Christ. You ask the question: “What is the primary responsibility of the Church in the world?” Some would say, “to witness, to support missions, etc.” I feel that is not the primary responsibility of the Church. The primary responsibility of the Church is COMMITMENT TO JESUS CHRIST! The effectiveness of the Church in the world is measured by its commitment to Christ. Its commitment is manifested in its effectiveness in the world (Luke 14:25-35).

Salt that has lost its zing, spizirinctum, is less than worthless. When Christians are willing to sacrifice in their commitment to Jesus, this presents an image of the Church that is different from what the world is getting today in some of our more contemporary churches. When believers stop playing at church and get down to business and start to realize that commitment is costly, then the Church of Jesus Christ begins to take on definition and meaning and significance in the world. The Church becomes a heady seasoning in an otherwise tasteless society.

When the Church ceases to be salt (Matthew 5:13) it ceases to penetrate, ceases to function as intended. In the eyes of a ridiculing world that both respects and hates the Church, we look utterly foolish. Israel in captivity was the laughing stock of the ancient world. Jesus said that savorless salt is “good for nothing”. The Church cannot change its role. When we cool in our commitment to Jesus Christ, we are good for nothing although we may be involved in a thousand ways in society.

Beloved, evaluate your priorities as a Christian. Is there anyone or anything that has replaced Christ as a priority in your life? God has injected His people literally all over this earth to function in every conceivable walk of life - using them in thousands of ways.

Paul prayed for the Church (Philippians 4:9-10) “that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, that you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ.”

Eva and I pray for you daily. I encourage you to lift each other before the Throne of Grace, that together we will penetrate our part of the world for our Lord Jesus Christ.

Love to you all.

--Pastor Charles Covington 1933-2006

Monday, November 06, 2006

Rain, Rain, and more Rain!

We are getting drenched here in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. We have had rain for a few days now and today is suppose to be the worst with wind and rising rivers. Highway 16 that goes through Gig Harbor is closed because water is pooling under the over passes and no cars can get through. There are major flood warnings on 11 rivers. I am glad I have no place to go. I will just stay inside and enjoy the sound of the rain on the roof and perhaps do a little bit of sewing and baking.

This is a little clip of the rain. The video doesn't show the rain that well but you can hear it. The first part is out our bedroom window and the second part is out our balcony door.

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Sunday, November 05, 2006

Pen Pulpit

Matthew 5:14-16
March 3rd, 2000

Christians are called “light” in Scripture. Light is what we are. We are a functioning entity as light in this world of darkness - a foreign influence in a natural environment of spiritual darkness (Ephesians 5:8, Philippians 2:15, I Peter 2:9).

Where do we get the name or title “light”?

• God is called light (I John 1:5). Essentially this is what God is!

. . . Intellectually, light is truth - darkness is error

. . . Morally and ethically, light is purity - darkness is evil

God is both absolute truth and He is morally pure and perfect.

• Jesus Christ claimed to be the “Light of the World” while He was here (John 9:5, 8:12). Truth and moral perfection are perfectly revealed in Christ.

• Christians become the representation of God in this world. We have received God’s own nature and His revelation.

What is our purpose as light?

• To be seen. This fact is illustrated by a city set upon a hill (Matthew 5:14) - and lights aren’t to be covered. The city on a hill is visible and prominent from every direction. The Christian is not only to be seen in the world but he is to be prominent! Not prominent in the sense of being famous - but prominent in the sense that you stand out as being different from others (Philippians 2:12. 13).

• To reveal hope for this world. “The lamp gives light to all who are in the house (Matt. 5:15)”. The lamp is beneficial in darkness. If the church is not benefiting the world in some way by our presence, then our light is hidden! The Church is God’s only contact with this world in terms of the redemptive purpose. What do men see when they look at the Church today? Do they see hope? Do they see people with answers? In many churches the light is covered - in some it has been extinguished (Revelation 2:5).

Our responsibility as light (Matthew 5:16).

• It is the Christian’s nature to display the grace of God - to shine for God. Now light doesn’t struggle to display its radiance. If the bulb is plugged into the power source it just shines. If you are properly plugged into the power source, you shine. However, you can hinder that radiance (Ephesians 5:3-14).

• We are to let our light shine before men - in the world of business, in the world of politics, in the world of sports, in our social world, in our family relations.

• Our light is seen by our good works (Ephesians 2:8-10, Titus 2:14, 3:8). The good works of a Christian are works that are different in quality and in motivation from those of the unbeliever.

• We are to move men toward God (Matthew 5:16b). We glorify God when we attribute worth to Him by what we say and what we do.

Remember - in order to function properly as light you have to stay close to the power source!

Love to you all.

--Pastor Charles Covington 1933-2006

Saturday, November 04, 2006

My sister-in-law Ruhiyyih had this picture on her blog, Ruhiyyih's Reflections. I thought I would post it on my as well. It is very amusing. :)