R.C. Sproul's "The Lightlings"

Posted by tom | Jun 16, 2012

Yesterday, I enjoyed R.C. Sproul's The Lightlings (Animatic DVD version with author commentary, 6 minute, 56 second run time) as part of a short break.

The Lightlings was recommended to me by one of my girls.

Thank-you to Elizabethtown Brethren in Christ Church library for having the The Lightlings as part of the collection. I commend the piece to Groshlink readers.

A Life Without Borders

Posted by tom | Jun 13, 2012

National Treasure: Book of SecretsBorders product placement in National Treasure: Book of Secrets (2007) didn't result in the much needed "treasure" :(

What's the secret to why we still have Apple, Motorola, Ferrari, Nicolas Cage, etc ;) Now the film's over I should get back to reading Adapt: Why Success Always Starts with Failure (Tim Harford. Picador. 2012).

Bee updated (5/30/2012)

Posted by theresa | May 30, 2012

For anyone who cares, the bees are doing their bee business as evidenced by eggs, larvae, and brood. So I guess we're doing something right! . . . Stopped by the sugar aisle at the grocery store and Lily says in an exasperated voice, "What?? More bee food??"

Censoring on the internet? . . . The Story of Queen Esther

Posted by tom | May 29, 2012

Are Facebook, Apple and Google Censoring Christian Speech? (Charisma News. Jennifer LeClaire. 5/25/2012). Anyone have stories/thoughts to share? Honestly, I'm still forming my thoughts on this one. Help me out. HT: Bill.

The Story of Queen Esther coverNote: Yesterday morning I read The Story of Queen Esther* with my younger girls. A powerful story about cultural engagement. . . . although referenced by many CultureMakers, I do not think that the story of Esther is told in the manner of triumphant stories of Christ-and-Culture. Giving this further thought, particularly as I read Changing Signs of Truth: A Christian Introduction to the Semiotics of Communication (Crystal Downing. IVP, 2012).

*Jenny Koralek and Grizelda Holderness. Eerdmans. 2009.

Beekeeping at the Groshes

Posted by tom | May 27, 2012

On Friday night, Theresa fed the bees all by herself, i.e., with her dad coaching from the sidelines. She reports:

Not at all scary. In fact, I'm more fearful of my rooster when I feed my chickens.

Below's a picture from the delivery of the bees (5/19).

2012 Delivery of bees

Say "Hi!" at Lancaster ArtWalk

Posted by tom | May 4, 2012

Craft Fair, November 6, 2010, Akron Grace Evangelical Congregational Church

Going to Lancaster's ArtWalk this weekend? Print out your guide at home and plan your stops. Don't forget to stop at Mommalicious, say HI to Theresa, and check out Naptime Inspirations.

Naptime Inspirations Bag Paper Doll Notecards Naptime Inspirations Naptime Inspirations Pillow

Not in South Central PA? Then please swing by the Naptime Inspirations Facebook Page to say Hi! AND if you haven't already done such, please "like" the page :) Theresa's creatively re-using material in new, fun ways. Your encouragement is much appreciated.

Tueday's Unexpected Delight

Posted by theresa | May 3, 2012

2012 Lily at the Penn State Hershey Medical Center Playground after a Christian Medical Society/Christian Medical & Dental Association Lunch LectureUnexpected delight: I got home from a morning of errands to find that our youngest wanted to go along with daddy to the Christian Medical Students' [Tuesday] lunch lecture. Looks like I will get a run in this week after all :-)

Note from Tom: Theresa's been looking for these opportunities as she prepares for the May 13 Komen Race for the Cure. Hope to have opportunity to help out other days.

Inquiry: Energy Supplier Recommendations?

Posted by theresa | Apr 24, 2012

It's that time again. Time to re-evaluate the energy supplier for our household. Has anybody found any great deals out there?

4/21 (7pm): “Old Testament Fast Forward”

Posted by tom | Apr 17, 2012

You are invited!

Old Testament Fast Forward Banner

 

Old Testament Fast Forward

Elizabethtown Brethren in Christ Church Junior Choir Musical

Saturday, April 21, 7 pm

 

Hayley and Ellen will be in this production. They’d be thrilled if you can come!

The musical will last about 40 minutes. If you have any questions, feel free to drop us a message :)

 

Elizabethtown Brethren in Christ Church | 996 East High St., Elizabethtown, PA 17022 | Next to the Fairgrounds | http://www.etownbic.org

Picture update: 4/17/2012, 11:39.

Torchlighters: The Amy Carmichael Story

Posted by tom | Apr 15, 2012

Those that lead many to righteousness shall shine like the stars forever. -- Daniel 12:3

On Friday, I finally had the opportunity to watch The Amy Carmichael Story1 with my scared little ones in my arms. It was a moving moment. We watched and discussed the video again on Saturday. I'm very excited that Elizabethtown Brethren in Christ Church's library carries this video in it's stock, along with John Bunyan. Hope we get them all (and more to come)! If you're unfamiliar with the series, check out their site

PS. On Saturday afternoon I watched the 30 minute documentary in the features section, drawn from Story Of Amy Carmichael and The Dohnavur Fellowship (Vision Video. DVD. 2002). As my colleague Joe shared in comments on Who are your favorite poets? (. ESN Blog. 3/13/2012), Amy Carmichael's poetry is "Gutsy stuff." I would add that this no doubt comes from a "gutsy liife of following Christ alone." I have Amma: The Life and Words of Amy Carmichael (Elizabeth Skoglund. Baker, 1999) in my "to read pile." It's definitely moved up in summer reading, i.e., after I finish spring classes at Evangelical Seminary.

PPS. I have a book of Amy Carmichael's poetry somewhere, I wonder where I placed it. Time to make a quick run down to my library!

1The Amy Carmichael Story. The Torchlighters. Vision Video. DVD. 2011. Inserted youtube clip is from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mAMzCRa5xTQ.

Bonus round for Monday Question Series: How to Care for Introverts?

Posted by tom | Apr 2, 2012

How to care for an introvert.

 

If you have a moment (and are willing to 'go public' or drop me an email), let me know if you agree/disagree with "How to Care for Introverts?" I'm also curious as to whether you consider me in need of such care/consideration -- whether I'm introverted, extraverted, or somewhere in between? Are extraverts to be treated in the opposite direction?

BTW, one of my Facebook friends replied "Just Ask Us" to the question of "How to Care for Extraverts?"

Further comment: To place the list in the context of giftedness and not seeking to remake introverts into extraverts when they are young visit http://www.gifteddevelopment.com/Articles/counseling/c140.pdf.

As you may already know, I've never been big on the Myers-Briggs, must be my "perfect" intuition combined with a flexibility in all the other categories. Even Thinking has recently moved to the middle of the scale -- or should I say that my Feeling has begun to flourish ;) For those such as myself who find themselves in-between, Silverman's "Introversion/Extraversion Continuum" may be helpful for framing consideration of the topic, http://www.gifteddevelopment.com/Articles/counseling/c135.pdf . . . I'm very much interested in your responses, especially those which help me make "sense" of what's going on ;) Feel free to digress with thoughts about "Giftedness."

HT: Michael for the picture.

Monday Question Series: What did you fall for on April Fool's Day?

Posted by tom | Apr 2, 2012

Yes, I fell for an all too simple April Fool's Day trick. A youth in our local congregation with whom I have periodic conversation, came up to me and pointed out to me that my shoelaces were untied . . . I looked, to find out that it was an April Fools Day joke. So, your turn.

What did you fall for OR if you'd prefer, what trick did you play on someone else :)

Monday Question Series: How has your magazine subscribing behavior changed?

Posted by tom | Mar 26, 2012

How has your magazine subscribing behavior changed? is a follow up question to "What print magazines would you be unable to live without?" (3/19/2012) -- both of which are borrowed from 5 Reasons To Spend $154 On Print News (Joshua Kim. Inside Higher Ed. 3/11/2012).

In my parent's dental office, I especially enjoyed Highlights, National Geographic (especially the maps), and Ranger Rick. In my teens I continued to not be able to put down National Geographic (especially the maps), but Entertainment Weekly became it's sidekick. At a certain point the popular culture of Entertainment Weekly became too much for me. Due to all it symbolizes and promotes, I can hardly even stand the cover. Its a joy to see my girls enjoying American Girl, Highlights, and Ranger Rick. My current patterns are posted at "What print magazines would you be unable to live without?" (3/19/2012).

 

Monday Question Series: "What print magazines would you be unable to live without?"

Posted by tom | Mar 19, 2012

I'm interested in knowing :)

My answer is InPart: Brethren in Christ Church. Just the right length for me to read through in a sitting & pass on to others, don't miss No Barriers Between Us: Enabling people of all (dis)abilities to take part in the community of faith by Nancy J. Patrick. Nancy J. Patrick is an associate professor of special education and the director of the graduate program in education at Messiah College (Grantham, Pa.). She’s authored several books on autism spectrum disorders, the most recent entitled Social Skills for Teenagers and Adults with Asperger Syndrome (2008). She and her husband serve as core team members at a church plant, Living Legacy Church, in Hershey, Pa.

I have a stack for "Grab a cup of coffee with Ralph and Carol Honderd, Friendship Ministries. They'll share about how local congregations can be present for those with intellectual disabilities (and their families). Note: 4/3, 11 am, Evangelical Seminary, Myerstown.

I also really appreciate the Economist, but I confess it is really hard for me to keep up as much as I'd like too (Thank-you to my friend who helps me w/the subscription, much appreciated!). Books & Culture's larger newspaper model along w/a desire to search for past articles,l led me to become an on-line user.

Since an early age sitting in my parent's dental office, I've liked the ability to take, page through/mark/tear out pieces of, share, and discard magazine publications ;) Come to the waiting room with me sometime ;)

This question is borrowed from 5 Reasons To Spend $154 On Print News (Joshua Kim. Inside Higher Ed. 3/11/2012).

Monday Question Series: Simplest School Subject

Posted by tom | Mar 5, 2012

What are your interests? Simplest School Subject?

At Evangelical, Myerstown, PA, I've found Spiritual Direction the simplest school subject. Why? A longing to walk with God and with others as they walk with God. What more joy can there be than dwelling in the presence of the Lord and inviting others to do likewise.

The love of God and love of others spills over into culture-making and creation care in unfathomable ways, richly interwoven with an insatiable passion for the new heavens and new earth where not only every tear will be wiped away, but all brokenness will be overcome to the glory of God. Our God reigns!

Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”

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29% OFF EVERYTHING at Naptime Inspirations!!

Posted by tom | Feb 29, 2012

Pennant Banner in Pink and Green Fabric

It's here! Today only, save 29% OFF EVERYTHING at Naptime Inspirations!! Use coupon code LEAP29 at checkout. If you are local, let Theresa know what you'd like to buy and she'll do a private transaction to avoid shipping.

Placemat purse eggplant with ribbon flower pin

Comment: It's amazing to see this slowly grow in the basement, on-line, in local shops/events over the past year. Theresa's labors are fun, creative re-use. Your support of these endeavors are much appreciated. New ideas stream in every day . . . if you have some to add to the mix, please do such.

Appliqued Onesie Pac-Man in size 6-9 months

Monday Question Series: Hardest Homework?

Posted by tom | Feb 27, 2012

What are your interests? Hardest Homework?

Hmm. Not sure. Maybe I should note that currently I'm wrestling with writing summaries of Old Testament books. There is so much to dig into, it's hard to go through the material quickly. Last term I appreciated spending a week in a Psalm and writing the Final Paper on Psalm 19 (Intro/Survey of Modern Theories). Hard to stop writing, but I find great joy in sharing with others such as you :)

Note: The questions from this Monday Question Series came from a piece of paper I found in the recycling bin. I printed a draft of my most recent prayer letter on the other side and thought "Hey, these are interesting questions." I'm assuming one of the girls brought it home from a school or church activity . . . continuing to reuse valuable resources :) Earlier posts: Coolest Color?Greatest Game?Perfect Pet?Peskiest Problem?Very Best Vacation?


 

Monday Question Series: Very Best Vacation?

Posted by tom | Feb 20, 2012

What are your interests? Very Best Vacation?

1996 Honeymoon Snow 1777 House at Donneckers -- SignWow! A tough question. Although maybe it's mixing categories, getting snowed in on our honeymoon (January 6, 1996) over Christmas break our senior year was the most memorable and I think the very best vacation I've every enjoyed. A touch point to return year after year. I love sharing the story . . . which reminds me, where is the snow this year? Worked out well for a mid-February hosting of Kent Annan and Scot McKnight. I'd been praying for (and asking others to join me in praying for) good travel weather since late fall! To God be the glory!

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Monday Question Series: Peskiest Problem?

Posted by tom | Feb 6, 2012

What are your interests? Peskiest Problem?

Hmm . . . I've encountered a lot of whining this morning. Hard for the family to function and accomplish even the simple tasks. Pray for strength for this new day/week.

Note: The questions from this Monday Question Series came from a piece of paper I found in the recycling bin. I printed a draft of my most recent prayer letter on the other side and thought "Hey, these are interesting questions." I'm assuming one of the girls brought it home from a school or church activity . . . continuing to reuse valuable resources :) Earlier posts: Perfect Pet?Coolest Color?Greatest Game?

 

Question: Topic Suggestions for Current Events Discussion Adult Elective

Posted by tom | Feb 2, 2012

On Sunday, I'm subbing for a Sunday School class which is a "Current Events Discussion." What topic/resource suggestions do you have to offer? Even if the material misses the class, the material will be posted here AND additionally may go on a blog (or 2), G+, Twitter, FB, etc :) Looking forward to your feedback.

Middle School Minister. Baptism. Systematic Theology III

Posted by tom | Jan 29, 2012

Continued from Middle School Minister. Baptism. Systematic Theology. and Middle School Minister. Baptism. Systematic Theology-II. . . .

having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead. -- Colossians 2:12

As part of how she's sharing her faith, my daughter gave testimony to the value of the Bible study she's a part of at the Middle School. In addition she shared the below music video as an inspiration in witness (Britt Nicole performing The Lost Get Found). She wants to go out in mission and share the Gospel.

How refreshing to interact with the faith of young people! Reminded me of when Eden took me up to the front row of the church last Sunday and we were joined by one the twins' friends. Wonder what will happen this week? 

More on the conversation coming . . .

Middle School Minister. Baptism. Systematic Theology-II

Posted by tom | Jan 28, 2012

Continued from Middle School Minister. Baptism. Systematic Theology. . . .

having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead. -- Colossians 2:12

Jason's handout on Preparing Your Testimony, which I walked through with my daughter who is seeking to make a public profession of faith accompanied by baptism, highlights four elements of Paul's testimony before King Agrippa Acts 26:

  • Sinning: Paul was against God and hated Christians.
  • Summoned (or Called): Paul heard Jesus calling him to follow Him and leave sin.
  • Surrendered: He gave his life to Christ - it says in verse 19 that he was obedient to what Jesus told him.
  • Servant: Paul then shares about how he began serving Christ.

Based upon these four elements, the handout asks one to think through one's life and how one has seen each aspect. Take a moment to consider your responses.

  • You probably weren't killing Christians, but sin did separate you from from God. What general and specific ways did sin have a hold over you?
  • You probably did not receive a vision, but somehow you heard the gospel message. How did you hear the message? Where were you? Was it over a period of time or did it happen all at once?
  • You probably were not obedient to a vision, but you did surrender your life in obedience to Christ. Do you remember a specific day when you gave your life to Christ or a period in time when you gradually gave your life to Him? How did that happen? Who were the key people involved with that?
  • You probably are not planting churches, but God is at work in your life now. What has Christ done through you since committing your life to Him and what ways do you hope to continue serving Him?

Stemming from one's reflections, one is instructed to . . .

  • Write out the whole thing and make it as long as you like.
  • Keep the long version, but then edit it down to two paragraphs, about one typed page double spaced or two pages written out.
  • Share it with at least two people to see if it makes sense and then make any changes that are suggested.

Some thoughts from my conversation with my daughter coming in future posts. Note: My spiritual autobiography, entitled One more day when you can live your life, can be read here. When I joined Elizabethtown Brethren in Christ Church, I wrote a short testimony. I will take a look for it and post it (or link to it).

Middle School Minister. Baptism. Systematic Theology.

Posted by tom | Jan 27, 2012

On Monday, as I met with the Jason, the director of Middle School Ministry at our local assembly. Our main purpose for meeting was to discuss the desire of one of daughters to receive baptism. I knew from the start it was going to be a good conversation. Why? Because as I crossed Folklore Coffee House for my "second breakfast," he was digging into Wayne Grudem's Systematic Theology. My kind of Middle School Minister :)

More on the conversation coming . . .

Monday Question Series: Greatest Game?

Posted by tom | Jan 23, 2012

2011 CMS Spring Retreat Carcassone

What are your interests? Greatest Game?

Hmm . . . When I was younger I liked to play Checkers. I shifted first to Chinese Checkers,then various stages of Chess, Monopoly, Risk, Sorry, Stratego, Tetris, Uno.

I remember a lot of Tetris, Rummy and Taboo in college. There must have also been Uno.

Thanks to friends at Carnegie Mellon University, Settlers of Catan then Carcasonne (picture above with PSU-Hershey CMS/CMDA students at 2011 Spring Retreat) then Cartegena topped the list (with Lost Cities and Bohnanza rising up/down as two or three player games at home). Note: Final Battle pictured below. At some point Dominoes was big, must have been due to friends in our local assembly's small group.

But the other day I won Apples to Apples in a room full of college friends (all girls, even with Theresa advising Becky) and our girls have really started to enjoy Fits. Could this be another change in disposition/perspective? Note: A PSU-Hershey CMS/CMDA game of Apples to Apples below (2011 Game Night).

A game of Apples to Apples at 2011 CMS Game Night. 

Maybe it depends on the audience, because I truly wish other locals had interest in Lord of the Rings, maybe after reading The Hobbit and now having started The Fellowship of Ring with one of my daughters, I'll nurture a next generation :)

Ok. Just because I like a game doesn't make it the "greatest game" and why haven't I even explored physical games or much in the area of computer games? So Ludwig Wittgenstein found game/games difficult to define. Not suprising :) The 3rd definition at Dictionary.com is "a competitive activity involving skill, chance, or endurance on the part of two or more persons who play according to a set of rules, usually for their own amusement or for that of spectators." But I've played plenty of games against myself, I wonder what that means ;)

It would seem that "the Greatest Game" would be simple enough to be learned early in life and be played across generations/cultures. Although not universal, Rock-Paper-Scissors immediately comes to mind. But the casting some form of die or shooting marbles may top my list. Close behind, games such as Candyland, Checkers, Chinese Checkers, and Fits can be learned/taught rather easily without reading. Then maybe Phase 10, Racko, Uno . . . As for 'the Greatest Game' being one of complexity and longevity, chess comes to mind first. Time to submit this question to some of my friends from Carnegie Mellon University ;)

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God at Work: Sunrise

Posted by tom | Jan 19, 2012


God at Work Sunrise

Our three year old looking at this sunrise on January 6 declared, "Mom! I see God at work!" "Hi God!"

I opened Saturday and Sunday morning prayer at the Christian Medical & Dental Association's Northeast Winter Retreat (1/13-15) with this quote, Psalm 19, and the encouragement to see God at work (in the world, the human body, and one-another through the lens of the Word, Spirit, and Body of Christ).

PS. Below's a picture of the Hershey crew and the Saturday sunset at Sandy Cove. More pictures along with reflections from the retreat coming. We rejoice in your prayers for our family and the work to which we've been called. . . .

 2012 CMDA Winter Retreat Hershey Crew

2012 CMDA Winter Retreat Sun Begins To Set Saturday Evening


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