Dear Family and Friends,
The beautiful sights of Christmas seem more enchanting every year. We must constantly remind ourselves that ornaments sparkle today only because the most glorious One was shattered the Lord Jesus Christ on the cross. His death for our life.
And she will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for it is He who will save His people from their sins. (Matthew 1:21)
Paul is as busy as ever writing articles for the BFF web site. Averaging over 500 web pages viewed a day, the web site has been very active. Two popular series are 'Reviving Your Personal Devotions' and the sixty-plus articles on various aspects of marriage all described in the 'Marriage Navigator.'
Discipleship, helping people go from one stage to the next in their Christian walk, has always been important to Paul. Over the last four months, his focus has turned to preparing training materials for those who are involved in or preparing for Christian leadership. We are excited about a church in India that has started using BFF materials to train workers to be more effective in reaching those who have not yet heard the gospel.
Paul and Linda are thoroughly enjoying their 24th year of marriage. Our 25th anniversary is coming along in the spring. We sometimes feel that we are just beginning to understand marriage and parenting. Paul gets his exercise by cutting and splitting cords of wood for our woodstove. Linda has taken on the sugar habit. She has radically cut back on sugar and feels so much better. She has also overcome a long term stand-off with exercise and exercises most days now.
Elizabeth began her senior year at Pensacola Christian College this fall. During the summer she helped design a web page for the English service at our church (Pittsburgh Chinese Church in Oakland). She has been very busy preparing for her art show on February 23rd. The whole family hopes to visit Paul's parents and attend her 32 piece art show on our annual trip south. With lots of prayers, she survived the two-week illness ordeal that landed her in the hospital for five days with pneumonia. She recovered just in time for finals.
Christy (18) is glad her high school years and graduation are behind her now. One highlight of her summer was getting her drivers license. She takes part in a small group at church. She finds teaching Sunday School to toddlers quite a challenge especially since some of these Chinese children don't understand much English. She is trying to learn Chinese on her own. Christy has been working for several elderly people helping them clean their homes. She has been thinking of making this her own little business.
Our second generation of children is are growing up too. Everyone joins in for a joint school session in the morning with a hymn, scripture memory, character theme and definition and some exciting reading from the ATI materials.
Allison (11), loves horses and devours books on all sorts of topics especially horses, Red Wall, etc. Her many posters and drawings cover her bedroom wall like wall paper. She spends hours crocheting, being with friends and is reading through the Bible up to Hosea. She spends many happy hours playing with her gerbil Fuzzy.
Daniel (9), like all boys, loves to eat and have fun. He is not too happy with computer game limitations but accepts it. He spends time with his friend James up the street. Dad spends time each week with him discussing a Bible passage and life issues. Daniel likes to draw battle scenes
8 year old Benjamin's front teeth are coming in slowly. He shares a room with Daniel and his little brother Isaac. When he sets his mind on it, he is a very hard worker. Math seems to come easy to him. He is learning to read.
Kathryn (6), is not far behind in reading. She shares a room with Allison and baby Rebekah. Kathryn, like the others, is trying to pick up some Chinese. She is our puzzle do-er. She also loves playing Uno with anyone who has time.
Isaac (3) is our cheerful 'buddy.' He loves to" see" what is happening in the kitchen. Rebekah (14 months) is just starting to walk. She becomes very animated when the music is on.
We are thankful to the Lord for a happy, healthy family, and for His many mercies and blessings over the past year.
Thank you for your cards, calls and concern!
Since our family and ministry continue to grow and care growing and changing, we have so much to share in pictures and in words. Let us know if you would like to receive our biweekly email/web prayer letter or receive BFF's updates.