One of the most exciting things that has happened to Holden since we got here (next to getting his very own letters in the mail!) is the appearance of his top teeth!! Most of you know that he got those 4 top teeth knocked out last year (March, 2007) when Paul and I were in Haiti on a mission trip. After healing up well, we were reassured that his big teeth were in there and not damaged, and that their eruption would probably be delayed due to the trauma. Well, as you can see, they have finally made their appearance! Holden has already eaten an ear of corn on the cob (Florida sweet corn can not even compare to Iowa's!!) and we are all getting used to his new look!
This has been a fun and busy week! We have put in lots of hours at Agape with Paul. That has been really fun for me, but the kids lose enthusiasm after a little while, but they were great troopers! Wednesday we went in for breakfast, then I sat down with 3 of the missionaries and helped them start a blog for their supporters. We stuffed envelopes for a major mailing and the boys did lots of odd jobs like cleaning windows (and did very well...I couldn't help but mentally add that to their list of chores at home as well!), bathrooms, sweeping the floor and even mopping. I hope they were more of a blessing than problem since we were there all day! Alayna made art work for people's desks...there was plenty to go around! We went back Saturday morning to help finish packing up some medications that were donated. Some were expired and when they were donated to Bangladesh originally, they were rejected because of that. Someone brought them in as is and we had to go through each box and remove and discard all the expired medicine and then repack the boxes, weigh and label them to be ready to go on the plane for the next flight. These were REALLY good medications and supplies and it would have almost been a crime to have to throw them all away, so we were so glad to be able to help get them to the island and into the hands of those who need them most.
Paul and Alayna glued the envelopes closed, Gabriel stuffed the envelopes.
Another wonderful thing happened in our family recently that I am so excited to share with you! Paul's brother had his first child (actually his wife Rubie had her...you know what I mean!!) earlier this month!! I am so excited to introduce you to Chloe Marshae Prachar. She is sporting a onesie I found around here that I thought said it all (Paul's brother is 10 years older than him and has long wanted a family. His marriage to Rubie also brought him 3 step-sons, so they have 3 boys and a girl as well). We are so excited she is here and healthy and can't wait to meet her in person! Congratulations Martin and Rubie! Welcome sweet Chloe! We love you all!
I want to pass on a bit of wisdom I learned this morning at church. First of all, let me say that we are so blessed by this church, so blessed to find a church so quickly and one that teaches such great lessons just when we needed them! Anyway, what we learned this morning was the "Chocolate Milk Doctrine". You may have heard this, but we hadn't, what a great object lesson. Anyway, we are like a glass of white milk. Jesus is the chocolate. When we trust in Him for salvation, he sends His Holy Spirit (the chocolate) to live in us. But, if you just put in the chocolate and never do anything else, the chocolate doesn't change us and we don't look or act any different than anyone else who doesn't have the chocolate in them. BUT, when we submit our wills to the stirring of the spirit, striving to bring all things in our lives under His authority and into obedience to Him, we look like chocolate milk. BUT, if we decide again not to submit to the stirring of the Holy Spirit, we quickly become as white milk again, and we eventually become rotten and putrid white milk with chocolate in the bottom. This was tied into our lesson on Solomon today who obeyed God PERFECTLY in some areas, but did not submit other areas of his life (e.g his marriage) and obey God, therefore becoming putrid, rotten white milk with chocolate in the bottom. When we allow sin to be present in our lives without allowing the Holy Spirit to stir us into obedience, our minds become twisted, our hearts become hardened and we have a hard time agreeing with God that we are actually sinning, and we justify what we are doing. God wants us to OBEY him in everything, not just get some parts perfect. Listen when the Holy Spirit tries to stir you and may you be very rich dark chocolate milk!!! I know I want to be just that!