Sunday, July 21, 2013

Day at the Beach

We were looking for a good place to take some pics.

The sunflower fields were all dried up (too hot of a summer), so the beach it was!

You can tell that Mika did not really want to participate, but she had fun still!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

At the Aquarium

Dan was asked to fill in for one week of Summer School (as a teacher, not a student).

On Wednesday, we went to the Okinawa Aquarium:

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

20th Anniversary

Well, today is our 20th Anniversary.
Amazing how fast the time goes by!

We went to Tokyo for a few days to celebrate.
Here's to the next 20!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Mika Graduates

Well, after 3 years, Mika has graduated Kindergarten (she started at 3).

She was really excited, but is also quite shy. However, she did a great job of singing several songs with her class.  Congrats Mika!

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Easter Morning

Easter Garden - Day 14

We had Origami Butterflies in our garden this morning.  Just as the caterpillar becomes a new creature, a butterfly, so do we in Christ.  

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.  --2 Corinthians 5:17

Friday, March 29, 2013

Easter Garden - Day 12

Day 13 - In the Tomb

We put our caterpillars in the tomb...I wonder what will happen next? 

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Easter Garden - Day 11

Day 11 - Caterpillars!

I know what you are thinking: what do caterpillars have to do with Easter?

Well, nothing really. However, they are a reminder of what Jesus can do with us. When we surround ourselves with His goodness and allow Him to change us, we can become something beautiful.  

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Easter Garden - Day 10

Day 10 - The Dove

It is a little difficult to make it out, but we added a dove to the tree. The dove being a symbol of the Holy Spirit.  Just before the crucifixion, Jesus told his disciples that He would be leaving them soon. However, He also promised that another "Helper" would come. This of course was the Holy Spirit. 

The Dove reminds us that the Holy Spirit is here to help guide us through life. 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Easter Garden - Day 9

Day 9 - Stone Path

Tonight we laid a path to the tomb.  This stone path reminds us of our life's journey.  The stones, like life, can be quite hard at times. Yet very often it is only by going through the difficult times that we really sense our need of God. 

The stone path leads us to Jesus. 

Monday, March 25, 2013

Easter Garden - Day 8

Day 8 - The Tomb

Tonight the girls made a tomb.  A tomb is where you put a dead body. Spiritually speaking, we are all walking "tombs", prior to knowing Jesus. He is the life-giver. The tomb reminds us that we were once dead, but now, thanks to Jesus, we are alive to live for Him.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Easter Garden - Day 7

Day 7 - The Cross

Tonight we talked about the Cross and what it means.  This symbol of pain, suffering and death has become, for us, a symbol of hope, healing and life. Jesus' sacrifice is what Easter is really about.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Easter Garden - Day 6

Day 6 - White Flowers

Tonight we added some white flowers to our garden.  White of course being a symbol of purity. Jesus died a cruel death, although He was innocent.  When we accept this payment for our own sins, we too are made pure.

As Psalm 2:3-4 says, only those with clean hands and a clean heart can stand in the presence of God.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Easter Garden - Day 5

Day 5 - Purple

We have some purple flowers today.

Purple symbolizes royalty. The purple flowers here (I know, they are hard to see) represent Jesus as King. Not only was He received as the Messiah and king on Palm Sunday, but when He returns He will return as King.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Easter Garden - Day 4

Day 4 - Tree

The tree represents the "Grounding" of our faith. 

Just as a tree has roots that grow deep and provide the tree with nourishment and strength. When a storm comes, those strong roots will keep that tree standing. Spiritually, we need to have a strong foundation by being grounded in our faith. This requires studying God's Word and applying it to our life. We must also be led by the Holy Spirit.

He that meditates on God's Word will be like a tree planted by the water. (Psalm 1:2-3)

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Easter Garden - Day 3

Day 3 - Grass

The grass represents growth in our life. 

Once we have the right kind of soil (heart), and are watered (with God's Word), the result will be growth in our spiritual life. 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Easter Garden - Day 2

Day 2 - The Soil

You cannot have a garden without soil.  The soil receives seeds, provides nutrients and a base for plants to grow. 

In a spiritual sense, our hearts are like soil.  Not all soil is the same, however, some soil is hard and will not receive seeds very well. Jesus mentioned this in the parable of the seeds-- those that fell on hard ground withered in the sun or were eaten by birds.

Let's have the right kind of hearts-- soft and receiving of God's Word. That way we too will grow strong and tall spiritually.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Easter Garden - Day 1

Thought we would try something different this year; we are making an "Easter Garden."

A couple weeks before Easter we begin adding parts to our Garden. Each piece is significant and points us towards God.

Day 1 - The Pot

On this day we focus on the pot. 

It is nothing special on its own, yet it is set aside for a certain purpose. Many "vessels" have certain purposes, some are noble (fine china, fancy goblets), while others are much more mundane (trashcan, ashtray). 

God says that we too are vessels.  2 Timothy says that we need to keep our vessel pure so that we may be suitable for more noble purposes. Hey, nobody wants to eat from a trashcan, right? Let's remain pure and dedicated for God's purposes in order that He will use us for His noble purposes.