Sunday, April 26, 2009

Jamin's Decision

Yes, Jamin plans to get a degree in Intercultural Ministry and enter missions. Yes, he was accepted to Eugene Bible College.

Jamin had planned to stay in TX and take general ed classes before going to a private college. THEN, he thought it would be cost effective to go ahead and go to the private college now, as he could split living expenses with his sisters. Jamin has other benchmarks that we suggest for our young men, in addition to college, that he is trying to reach (moving toward future goals, owning a vehicle debt free, $10K in the bank). He began to research, pray, and discuss how to reach his goals in a quick and DEBT FREE manner.

This was HIS decision. We'd be happy to have him safely at Eugene Bible College. We would also be happy to see him stay in Texas with Josiah.

Please understand our adult children often wait to hear our thoughts before making decisions, but at 18 he is an adult, and these decisions are his. (I realize not all 18 year olds are adults but Jamin fact Jared at 15 is fast approaching the same status in our eyes. LOL)

Mike and Jamin had a long talk Friday afternoon and Jamin has decided to stay here in Texas. This allows him to continue his job. He has 8K saved towards his first year of college. EBC is 3x the cost of ASU. This means that though he still needed $1-4,000 for his freshman year at EBC, he now has enough to pay for almost two years at ASU. He will take 2 years of general classes. He's checked and they'll transfer into his degree at EBC. He plans to CLEP some classes and he has already been taking classes from Taylor University that will also transfer. During the next two years he will save up for the last two years of college at EBC...and continue to replenish his nest egg. He hopes to enter EBC as a Junior with the cash to pay for the remaining years of college.

The girls are talking of downsizing to a one bedroom apartment. Josiah and Jamin are looking for a 2 bedroom apartment here in town. Jamin has begun the process of applying to ASU, we don't expect any trouble in getting accepted.

Such teamwork - of course he'd want to share an apartment with Cy for a bit. ::snort::


Yep, my mommy heart rests easier knowing that Josiah will not be without family in Texas.

I have a couple of hours until Mike gets home....I think I'll go work on photos.

Choosing Joy!
©2009 D.R.G.


Friday we got orders to Misawa AB, Japan. We're going!! Mike faxed the orders and the housing application that afternoon. This means that we can now schedule packing dates and buy tickets. We hope to get an idea of what sort of housing to expect during this next week. The orders will need to be ammended...they gave us one travel day. ::snort::

Bugs? Friday afternoon I had the termite folks out again to inspect and renew our warranty against bugs. We hope to have this house on the market shortly - only a few months later than hoped for. God knows.

Mike and Jared pressure washed the fence in preparation of staining it. They held off on staining as it looked like we may get rain?



I went through the kitchen and my scrapbooking stuff. I did this to know for SURE how many more original Creative Memory pages and protectors I needed. I also ordered a new album from CM that hopefully will speed things up for me. I'd love to get all my magnetic albums transferred before the move.

Mike took the composter apart and took it and a bag of compost to our friends. We all enjoyed a power play date...though we barged in on the poor A family. Ah well.

Margie dropped $ buy from the SACSHA sale. I made $100. I decided to sell another bit of curriculum - by evening I had a call from someone who is interested. Thanks, Deja, for helping me part with IEW. ::snort::

Choosing Joy!
©2009 D.R.G.

Holocaust Thoughts

Look at the cool book to the left. This is a gift to us from Wanda, Walter and Dr. Gail. It is a gift we will cherish and use in our homeschool. I happen to have plenty of space on our shelves for new books at the moment. ::snort::

A few things that stood out to me after listening to the briefings presented this past week.... and in case the link thing doesn't pull up the post from 2007 that shows the survivor's quilt and such - you can find that here.

Holocaust - the word means "sacrifice or offering burned whole before the Lord".

6 million Jews and 5 million others perished at the hands of the Nazi German regime.

Judaism is "a religion with a strong cultural influence around it, not a race." This is important to note. Nazi Germany relabled Judaism from a religion to a race...and I suspect many of us, without thinking, may have the same definition. To be a Jew is to be part of a religion - the first to believe in one God.

Dr. Gail gave 7 or 8 elements that led up to the Holocaust...but I can't find the slip of paper I took notes on. If I find it, I'll post them. I found it very interesting to compare the history of the past with our current society. We are naive to think that genocide (a word created to describe the Holocaust)does not occur today or that it won't in the future.

Meeting a survivor and hearing their first hand story is both a burden and a gift. What will you do with their story to ensure that this never happens again? Those voices which deny the Holocaust are getting louder as the voices of the victims get fainter. Only 11 states require that anything be taught about the Holocaust. Six survivors in the Tucson group have died since September.

Books and things recommended to me (so I don't lose the paper before I find the books)

  • Recent Hallmark movie about a lady named Irene - anyone have the title?
  • "The Foundation of the 19th Century" - thoughts that led to discrimination of Jews
  • "I Never Saw Another Butterfly" by Hana Volavkova Children's poems and drawings from Terezin Concentration Camp
  • "Night, Dawn, Day" by Elie Wiesel
  • Google Holocaust Diaries - other than Ann Frank's does anyone have some titles to share? The list is long.
  • "The Lost: A Search for Six of Six Million" by Daniel Mendelsohn
  • Books by Primo Levi
  • "A Bag of Marbles" by Joseph Joffo
  • "A Hero and the Holocaust: The Story of Janusz Korczak and his Children" by David A. Adler** This man is someone Mike and I both want to research further.
  • Visit the US Holocuast Memorial Museum for lists of books, teaching plans, guidelines etc.

Other than the Yom HaShoa service, I think I've corralled my thoughts. Or, in CPE speak, I've down processed. I can move on with life and revisit the topic and thoughts when life is a bit less hectic.

BTW if you've read any of the above books, I'd love to hear your thoughts. If you have any diaries to recommend, I'd also love you to leave those titles.

Choosing Joy!
©2009 D.R.G.

Thoughts Aroused by Discussion with a Jewish Chaplain....

{Mike discovered a suspense due Monday @ 7:30 a.m. (he was out of the office all week last week) so I have a bit of time to capture a few thoughts.}

Many readers know that I've been exploring the Jewish culture/faith and how it impacts our understanding of Christ's words and our Christian faith. Being able to sit and discuss various issues with Dr. Gail Wallen, director of Holocaust Services for the Jewish Family and Children's Service of Southern Arizona and a Jewish lay Chaplain, was a rare gift. Bible Study attendees KNOW that I'm good at asking questions. ::snort:: Here are a few things that I'm mulling over after my time spent in discussion with Dr. Gail (on the left ::snort::).

1. Whenever we discuss matters of faith (or really anything) it is crucial to define our terms. For example, when I hear Messiah, I think Jesus. When Gail hears Messiah she thinks, "one to come" among other things.

2. From the Jewish perspective all Jews are "Messianic Jews." All are looking for and believe in the coming of a Messiah. If by "Messianic Jew," we refer to someone who is Jewish and believes in Jesus as the Messiah, those who are practicing Jews would say this is impossible. Being Jewish is a religion and not a race, is the thought. If one chooses to convert and become Catholic they are no longer Protestant. In the same way, if a Jew chooses to convert to Christianity, they are no longer considered Jewish by those who are in the Jewish faith.

3. Christians who are "going back to Jewish roots," as well as Jews who believe in Jesus as Messiah, are best labeled Hebraic Christians. This made sense to me as I've had Christian, non-Jewish friends tell me they are now "Messianic Jews" because they are going to practice Torah et al...but technically, accurate title would be Hebraic Christian.

4. There are "secular Jews" and they are still considered Jewish. They attend synagogue on the High Holidays and not much else, but they are still in the faith and, therefore, Jewish. (Like CE Christians near as I can tell).

5. Jews do not try to proselytize. In fact a Rabbi is to turn down a potential convert three times before allowing them to convert. This is because it is hard to live as a Jew. I couldn't help but compare this to some services I have been in where it appears that the leader is trying to cajole a person to accept Christ and "all it takes is a quick glance, we won't embarrass you, make you stand up or talk to anyone...."

6. Dr. Gail shares in her talk how religious myths played a part in leading the Holocaust. She emphatically states that the Jews did not kill Jesus. The Romans did. I've heard Christians argue that it was Jewish leaders who tried Christ and turned Him over to the Romans to kill. Bottom line around our home? The Jews did not kill Christ. The Romans did not kill Christ. I did. My sin sent Christ to the cross. To argue this point, or persecute those of the Jewish faith over this point, seems to miss the basic bedrock fact that, "All have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God." (Rm 3:23)

7. I was shaken to realize anew how EVIL men can be. I struggled with God's sovereignty in the midst of all this. I already alluded to the discussion that Gail and Mike had earlier in the week where they discussed various Jewish and Christian schools of thought on the issue. Faith in the midst of these types of situations can either be strengthened (Deitrich Bonhoeffer, Corrie ten Boom come to mind) or splintered. God remains God...though I can't begin to fathom His ways and dealings with mankind. Yeah, I don't get it intellectually, but I know it in my spirit!

8. In a very profound way, I realized what I'd known intellectually: those of the Jewish faith believe Jesus was a Jewish Rabbi, nothing more or less. They do not believe He is the Son of God. Of course, this differs from my faith. I believe Jesus is the Son of God. Therefore, I reached anew the conclusion that it is my responsibility to pray for those who I believe need to see the Son of God. I believe God revealed Himself to us through the Jewish faith. I believe He further revealed Himself through His son, Jesus the Christ. I believe He still reveals Himself today to those who seek Him - regardless of their religious label...because I believe He is THAT big. God continues to reveal more of Himself to me day by day...and He can do that for all of us regardless of our religious title.

There are other things I'm pondering, but this will do for recording the gist of my thoughts. I look forward to receiving my "Family Seder". LOL BTW, these religious talks are NOT part of the sessions on the Holocaust...these talks came about because I asked questions. ::snort::

Choosing Joy!
©2009 D.R.G.

Satisfied with God's Presence

"As for me, I shall behold Your face in righteousness;I will be satisfied with Your likeness when I awake." Psalm 17:15 (New American Standard Bible - Observation)

{Care for a sneak peak into my life journal? Devotional thoughts and word studies as I read - my tryst thoughts and NOT in depth, inductive study.}

Words I Love (Interpretation):

Behold - #2372 to see, behold, perceive with intelligence, by experience

Face - #6440 face, presence, person

Satisfied - #7646 to be sated, have a desire fulfilled, filled

Likeness - #8544 form, image, representation

Life Lessons (Application):

I will see, gaze, perceive by experience God's person and presence (which is always right); when I awake my desire will be filled, I will be sated with Him.

I seem to always want MORE of Him and yet search for the balance of being content, as well. God promises that as I seek Him, gaze at Him, walk with Him, I WILL see, experience His person, His Presence and His face. My desire will be fully filled. I'll be sated with Him....

My responsibility is to look, to see, to gaze, to behold. Like blind Bartimaeus, my cry is, "Rabbi, I want to regain my sight." (Mark 10:51 NASB)

Choosing Joy!
©2009 D.R.G.