Monday, October 22, 2012

Small hearts chasing God.

Yesterday I witnessed the most beautiful thing. A little boy, probably age 8 years old walked over to one of the deacons that stands up front to pray with individuals and began to speak. He said "Will you please pray for Granddaddy? His birthday is this week and I want him to have a really special Birthday. Will you also please ask God for him to keep Granddaddy here on earth, just a little longer?" I began to pray myself for this little boy and I asked God to keep his heart focused on Him. I prayed that God would bless this little guy and his granddaddy and that he would follow in God the rest of His days.

"He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven." - Matthew 18:2-4

Have faith like a child,

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Slow fade.

Today in Sunday School we talked about excuses people make for not serving God or following Him wholeheartedly. Someone mentioned this song and it touches base. If you make enough excuses you are going to eventually start fading from God. It starts slow and before you know it you've hit the bottom. The good thing is though that our Father is looking down on us with love and wants to pull us back up! He is always rooting for us. So stand up, and run back into His arms.

Be careful little eyes what you see
It's the second glance that ties your hands as darkness pulls the strings
Be careful little feet where you go
For it's the little feet behind you that are sure to follow

It's a slow fade when you give yourself away
It's a slow fade when black and white have turned to gray 
Thoughts invade, choices are made, a price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day
It's a slow fade, it's a slow fade

Be careful little ears what you hear
When flattery leads to compromise, the end is always near
Be careful little lips what you say
For empty words and promises lead broken hearts astray

It's a slow fade when you give yourself away
It's a slow fade when black and white have turned to gray 
Thoughts invade, choices are made, a price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day

The journey from your mind to your hands
Is shorter than you're thinking
Be careful if you think you stand
You just might be sinking

It's a slow fade when you give yourself away
It's a slow fade when black and white have turned to gray
Thoughts invade, choices are made, a price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day
Daddies never crumble in a day
Families never crumble in a day

Oh be careful little eyes what see
Oh be careful little eyes what you see
For the Father up above is looking down in love
Oh be careful little eyes what you see

Casting Crowns, Slow Fade

God, I pray that I would follow your will for my life and I pray that everyone that reads this will take a minute to think of the things that they are holding back from You.

In His Arms,

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Matanuska Susitna Glacier

On our last day in Alaska we visited the Matanuska Susitna Glacier. This glacier is 27 miles long and some of the tallest points were about 10-15 stories high. Side note: **For every one inch of glacier ice it takes 10 feet of snow to make- remember 27 miles of it??? Goodness gracious. We serve an AWESOME God.
Well enjoy the pictures!

In His beauty,

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Hiking Flattop Mountain in Alaska

Welcome to Flattop Mountain---

Why yes, you are in fact as close to this mountain as you can get to by car. You must hike over a hill and then up, up, and away before you can reach the top. Are you ready?? Good, lets go.

To begin, we are going to start by walking up the stairs you see in front of you. Next we will walk straight up a pretty big hill, crossing some snow, lots of mud, and pretty cold wind.

Yep, that's me. We were looking for a geocache. 

If you look closely you can see the parking lot. Now remember we are ONLY 1/10th of the way there.

Overlooking Anchorage.
You can see Denali (Mt. McKinley from over 300 miles away!!

After crossing this "little hill" you begin to hike around another pretty small (in comparison) hill. While hiking around you are beginning to get closer and closer to the edge and lots of wilderness around you.

A little snow. With blood.

Looking out into cook inlet.

This was really cool to watch. As we hiked the tide came in and went out. This was when it was out so it was really muddy and murky looking.

Thinking we're getting close!

We've finally reached the 2/3 mark and I know we're all pretty tired. But come on, this is ALASKA; a once in a lifetime opportunity to see views like this and to say that you have hiked this. So let's "suck it up cupcake" and make it to the top. Also, I should add that the first 2/3 of the hike are the easiest. (You're just NOW telling me this????) As we sit from this point looking up this is what awaits us----
Straight up rock climbing.
"I'm totally not prepared for this!!"

We had a little fun on the way to the top. 3 crazy friends slid down the snow slopes you see. Take a look here and here. 2 of the 3 made it down safely, unfortunately one made it halfway down, got turned around backwards, hit a rock and then rolled the rest of the way down. He broke his wrist and had a nasty, nasty bruise and gash on his back and was pretty shaken up by the time we got back down to the parking lot.

After hours of hiking, we've FINALLY reached the top!!!!


A typical Alaskan Work day

Monday June 25th
First day of work! We woke up and had our group devotions around 7:30am. Then we had breakfast and heard about our service project for the day. We would be staying at St. Johns and doing some work around this church. We split into two groups-boys and girls and began to work. The boys started off by doing some mowing and weed eating around the church. Next the began to split some wood. *Remember this wood pile, it will come back into play. Us girls started off by pulling weeds out of a garden. I've helped my mom pull weeds around our house before but these weeds were crazy. It was probably a 3 row wide garden, but only one row actually had anything planted. There was one row of strawberries and 2 rows of nothing, all of which were encompassed by weeds that came up to our knees. My thought is that this garden had never been taken care of. Well of course when you are working in the woods around a bunch of weeds the bugs are going to come out. Here in VA we have mosquitoes but they rarely bother me and I never wear bug spray. This was not an option-AT ALL in Alaska. Not only do they have mosquitoes but they are 3x the size they are here. Now hear me out- I've been to Mississippi and dealt with their mosquitoes but Alaska has got them beat. I've never seen anything like them. HUGE and out for blood. After conquering the weeds and mosquitoes we began to sand and prep for staining the 3 decks the church has. Unfortunately I didn't get any pictures of us working on our deck. :( After lunch we headed over to the park. The goal of the week was to minister to any and all of the kids that we came into contact with. A little harder than we had planned. We would get a huge group of kids together playing dodgeball and when we would sit down to have a lesson they would all run away and at most we were left with 2 kids to minister to. (Remember these two kids ;))

Some of the kids at the park. 
You have an awesome view no matter where you are in Alaska. <3 
Tuesday June 26th
We worked at a church that was completely rebuilding because of a fire that destroyed the first building. This  "new" to them building looked like a big metal room that they were beginning to separate into a sanctuary, classrooms, and one big fellowship type room. We helped by painting quite a few things around the church- rooms, doors, frames in between hanging up the new doors, putting in new door frames, cleaning some disgusting windows and playing a little wiffle ball ;) This day was probably the most work challenging. Again we headed to the park in the afternoon and hung out with the kids.

<3 Ab

Monday, July 9, 2012

Alaksa Day 1

Sunday June 24
Sunday was our rest day. Our day to catch up to their sleeping patterns and getting used to all daylight. We started our morning by going to a local church- Church on the Rock. The service, speaker, music, and congregation were awesome. This is one of the only churches in Wasilla that is actually thriving and has more than about 20 people on Sunday mornings. Alaska is the least churched state in the U.S and it definitely shows. We came back to St. Johns, where we were staying, and had some delicious spaghetti made by our cook Tom. Then we set off for our first Alaskan adventure. We drove up to a place called Hatcher's Pass and took a tour of the Independence Mine State Historical Park. Henry, Joseph and I all climbed way up past where we were supposed to be. I was terrified we were going to get eaten by a bear, stomped by a moose, or shot by someone. Luckily we made it out alive and when we got to the bottom my exact words were- "I felt like we were just hobbits." I guess it's something about running around on rolling hills on Mountains in danger that made me feel like Frodo and Pippin. 

Independence Mine State Historical Park
An Old engine

Old mining community

View from above

Mining railroad