Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Prayers for the Summer

Even when I'm here, in the suburbs of Chicago, I'm thinking of and praying for our Josiah Venture team across the ocean.

Within ten days, the season of camps will be in motion for our 24th summer!

This means...125 camps, with 6000 students, over 1000 short term workers, 105 interns, and many of our staff...too many to count!...on deck for spending a week sharing their lives and the Gospel at camp.

It's our most intense season of the year, and typically our most fruitful for the Kingdom of God.

Pray for a great harvest this summer of young people who will go from darkness to light. Pray they will become serious followers of Jesus, disciples who will make disciples.

Pray for our team, for physical and spiritual strength as they pour our their lives for the sake of the Gospel.

And join us in the JV Prayer Room HERE! If you're able, consider taking an hour once a week this summer, to bring all of these people before God in prayer. Stand with us in prayer for God's power to sweep across Central and Eastern Europe this summer!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Living Normal Life

The last time Claire and I lived normal life together (by that I mean seeing each other every day) was when she lived at home with us in Czech.

But of course for the past four years she's been in Chicago going to college at Moody Bible Institute, and working during the summers. So our "normal life" became seeing each other when we came to the States for various meetings and events, or during Christmases when she came home.

Now for this season of life, post graduation, her "normal" is living in the suburbs of Chicago while raising support to serve with Josiah Venture. And because I'm here with Dave for some of those meetings and events that we regularly come for, I'm getting a taste of that "normal life" with her!

In between both of our schedules, we've had the joy of meeting up every day, even if it's just been for an hour!

We've been to her favorite coffee spot, I took her to my favorite breakfast place, she's made me dinner, and I helped her move (our church family here is caring for her by providing new homes to live in every two months). And we've talked!

One of these days she'll be on the other side of the ocean with us, serving in ministry with us to the JV Kids. That will be very special and a new normal.

But for right now, it's meaningful to share this "normal"!

Monday, June 19, 2017

Our Growing Family

Oh how purely delighted I am to share these photos that recently came my way ... of our growing family!

Haley just entered her third trimester with their precious baby, due at the end of August in Colorado where she and Caleb live.

All babies are miracles, there is no doubt about that. But this one especially falls into that category since a year and a half ago they miscarried their first baby. While I didn't write about it on my blog at the time, Caleb and Haley have not shied away from talking about how God met and cared for them during their time of grieving, a loss we all grieved.

In God's perfect timing and sovereignty, he blessed them with this child almost an exact year after they lost their first precious one. They've been filled with love and praise for the Lord with that news, just as they were in their loss despite how painful that was.

I admire them so much for how they walked through that time of loss, as well as how they're embracing this time of new life.

And here they are now, just a little less than ten weeks away from birthing this much beloved little one, their SON!

You can imagine how much we all are looking forward to meeting this little fellow!

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Father's Day with our Girl

I am pretty sure the last time Claire spent Father's Day with her dad was four years ago, before she left home for college in the US. So today is special!

After being at Grace Church of DuPage this morning (with Dave preaching on "How to Pray for your missionary", which is already on line HERE!), we headed to Naperville for lunch to celebrate Father's Day.

Truth be told, if these two could have chosen something to do today it would've been a hike. But a walk along the river after lunch had to suffice!

In all the time we've been in and out of this area (even having lived here twenty five years ago), we've never been down to the river or to the park which has this well-known landmark.

The Millennium Carillon tower actually houses a very special set of bells (72 to be exact) that span a six octave range. This is the fourth largest carillon in North American, and one of only 600 in the whole world. A very cool feature to this amazing park!

Standing at the base of the tower!

We watched boats and canoes in the little lake and river nearby, filled with dads and their kids, all celebrating Father's Day, as we were!

How thankful I am for this wonderful man who loves his kids (and grandkids!) with a deep passion, and continually invests in them with all his heart, soul and mind. He's always got them in this thoughts and prayers, and they (and me!) are his greatest treasure!

So glad to celebrate him today in Naperville!

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Time-Honored Tradition

What better way to get Father's Day week-end started than heading to an Auto Parts store?

But the greater significance of this is that it's the first time Dave has ever gotten to help his girl take care of her car.

Since our kids grew up in Czech, and didn't have their own cars there, Dave has never had that time-honored tradition of helping his kids out with car issues. But now that Claire has her own car here in the US as she's support raising, he got to step in and help her out today.

And teach her a few things, like how to check the oil!

And how to change her own air filter. This is one of his favorite ways to teach...not doing it for her, but guiding her in how to do it!

I don't know why, but this was one of my favorite moments of Dave helping Claire.

Checking out a small leak together
They were back and forth into the auto store, getting the necessary supplies, with dad completing another time honored tradition: paying for his daughter's car parts. 😊

And Claire completed her part of the deal, not only doing the work alongside her dad, but getting the time-honored smudge of dirt as well!

All tasks were completed successfully! Proud of these two for a job well done.

And one more time-honored tradition before moving on with our day!!

Your dad loves you so much Claire, even filling up your gas tank!