Sunday, March 28, 2010

Mr and Mrs Paul Smith

Congratulations to Paul and Natsuki!
You guys had such a beautiful wedding yesterday.

It was a wonderful witness as well to hear the testimonies from others; you both pray and seek after God's Will.
Keep following Him!

Sounds like y'all have a "God-knot": A three stranded cord is not easily broken (Ecclesiastes 4:12)

And thank you for including our girls in your wedding; they loved it!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Happy Birthday Dad!

This is a birthday message for Debe's Dad.
But if we've missed anyone's birthday, go ahead and listen; you can pretend it's for you too!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Book Review: A Century Turns

A Century Turns is the latest book by conservative author and political pundit William J. Bennett. It covers the 20 years from the presidency of George H W Bush (1988) to the beginning of Barak Obama in 2008. The chapters are divided by 4 year intervals, or each presidential term. In addition to the actions of each President, Bennett discusses other government officials, American cultural/societal shifts, as well as world events.

This is much more than a history book, however. In each chapter Bennett weaves in a lot of background information, much of which was experienced first hand. The notes add fascinating details unknown to most people. As I "grew up" politically during these same years it was really interesting to read about -- and remember -- events that I lived through. It is really well written and having the additional background information is what really made the book worthy of that 5th star.

Although Bennett maintains his conservative viewpoint throughout the book, I appreciated his unbiased assessment. He equally praises and criticizes decisions on both sides of the political aisle.

I received this book courtesy of Thomas Nelson Publishers in exchange for an impartial review. The views and opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

4 Years

Photo from e3missions

Wow, four years went by quick! This was from our first meeting at the old cafe four years ago. That was about the same time I started teaching every other Sunday evening. I am really appreciative to Pastor Tom for his encouragement and guidance in allowing me to teach. Also the many gifted translators over that time.
Osewani narimashita!

I recently decided to stop teaching in order to focus on my schooling -- not the JHS, but the online course from Liberty. It's a class in Education Psychology (of course from a Christian perspective) that I started on Monday.

Pray that I can keep up with the reading!

Yellow Sand

Perhaps you've heard of the sandstorms in China? They actually occur every Spring, but this year is especially bad.

They are a result of 1) Cutting down too many trees (deforestation), and 2) Drought, which has led to 3) increased amount of desert land (desertification).

It has been really bad in China, but unfortunately this has also affected neighboring countries including us in Okinawa. Although it is not as bad here, it still is not good to breathe this kind of air. Please pray for some rain!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Emi's Praise Song

Emi attends Awana Club every Wednesday night. She really looks forward to it and has a great time. Her "tasks" are to remember a Bible verse every week and sometimes she has an extra task. This week she was supposed to "Write a Praise Song." So she did! These are mostly her own words (Dad helped a little).

Well, here it is (to the tune of Twinkle, Twinkle):

Friday, March 12, 2010


Well the time for graduation has come again.
Wow, this is my ninth graduation in Japan! A few more and I'll have more years in Japanese school than the U.S.

This year 266 students have graduated. This class is a little extra special for me, as I have had them for all three years of Junior High School.

It is interesting to see their faces at graduation; some are clearly nervous, or happy, or sad. Well, blessings as you enter your High School Life!

The girls are all smiles...

The boys are smiling too -- on the inside!

Monday, March 08, 2010

Mika is 3 years old!

Well 3 years sure do go by quickly! It seems just like yesterday we brought home this little baby. Mika is 3 now! She is now speaking in full sentences (non-stop!); learning to use the potty (not perfect yet); and loves to read books. Okay, she isn't reading yet, but loves books just the same.

To celebrate her special day, we went to the Okinawa Zoo.

Inside the zoo is the Wonder Museum. They had a special reading section, so we read some books.
For dinner, we made one of Mika's favorite meals: Goya (bittermelon).

With sister Emi and Auntie Lisa.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

The End Is Near?

Well another earthquake today in Taiwan. Seems like there have been a slew lately -- Haiti, Okinawa, Chile and now Taiwan. Not surprising to those familiar with the Bible, though. In Matthew 24, the disciples ask Jesus "What sign will show that the end of the world is near?" Jesus answered in verse 7:
For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.
And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places.

So many people are worried that with all these earthquakes, perhaps the end is near. Now it is true that we have earthquakes every day; we just are not as aware of them. But it is also true that no man knows when the end will comel Jesus said this in verse 42:
Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come.

So it seems the best thing to do is to just "be ready."
Jesus is coming again -- are you ready?