Wednesday, February 20, 2008

This is how I felt today!

Well, today we woke up early, 5:30am, to milk our new Nubian goats! We have one goat named First Impressions and one goat named Brooke. This has been a major lifestyle change for us. I have never been a super early riser, but have prayed diligently to be transformed! God has now answered my prayer by providing two goats that need to be milked every morning. Adjustment to this lifestyle is taking a while, this is why I felt like this today!

Monday, February 11, 2008

I Never Knew...

Today I was cooking dinner... We were having fish sticks and fries, and Mom asked me to put them in the oven while she went out to master milking the goats with Maddie. I was putting it all onto baking trays when all the kids gathered around to find out what I was cooking. The following conversation took place:
Haddie Hope: "Jewel-lee [spelled the way she says Jillian] whatcha making?"
Me: "Fish"
Haddie Hope (looking astonished) : "How'd the fish get like that?"
Elaina: "WELL, let me tell you. The people bring the fish into the store and they turn in into chicken."
Obviously my mother never told me the WHOLE truth about fish sticks... I never knew...


Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Monday, February 4, 2008

The Mad Hatter - Maddie's "I'm 13 Again" Birthday!

February 3rd was a BIG day in the Mansell family! First, Maddie felt God calling her to make her decision for Christ public and walked the isle of our church sanctuary! It was soooo exciting to watch her make this independent step of faith! She is the first of our six adopted children to make her faith public. This was answered prayer! Our prayer before adopting was, "God, please bring us children who will come to a saving knowledge of You and make a difference for Your kingdom." God brought an extra blessing in that it was Maddie's 13th birthday! God brought an extra, extra blessing by allowing it to be our good friend Vince's birthday as well. Vince is the missions pastor at our church and was a vehicle God used to help provide funds for our adoption. Our church has a new adoption ministry and Maddie was the first adopted child to be adopted twice, the goal of the ministry, into our heavenly family. A special thanks goes to Grami and Grandaddy who came to visit at such a special time as well.

Maddie's birth certificate from Ethiopia shows that she was thirteen and this should be her fourteenth birthday, however, Maddie did not want to be fourteen yet for a number of reasons. We decided she would be "13 again" and could adjust her age in the future if desired. With ten children, 6 from Ethiopia, well...birth dates aren't that big of a deal. Ethiopia is not big on correct birthdates so most of the ones we have are or were off anyway!

Since it was a "special" birthday being that she turned 13 again, we took her to A L'il Peace of Heaven Tea House in Port Royal, SC. Her birthday request was a tea set for entertaining her friends. A special "sorry" to my friends whom I have served with paper plates and what ever glass was clean over the years! Mark and I have decided that we are taking each child out on their birthday to have one on one time with them and to discuss their upcoming year. The above are a few pictures from the event. Note: When you enter the tea house you must choose a hat to wear.

Something Jillian Wrote...

I am going to post something Jillian wrote because It touched me (I received full permission in regard to the copyright! What touched me is the part about the Christian life being an uphill climb, but as we work to seek Him how the view just gets sweeter. I hope you enjoy this as much as I. We have many things to write about and I hope to get back tonight to give some great updates on Maddie's first birthday in America, some new believers in our Heavenly family and milk goats!!!!

  • One reflection you can never see with a mirror...

    [Before you read... The issues raised within its text are not raised for the fact of the issues or convictions within themselves, but merely to discuss the PATHWAY in which I arrive at such conclusions. I wish for no one to misinterpret my meaning. :) ]

    "Culture is religion externalized." -Henry Van Til
    "The way a people live their lives, the way they communicate, their philosophy of work, and their approach to aesthetics all reflect the standards and priorities of the people, and those priorities are dictated by their true faith." -Douglas W. Phillips

    Today, more than before, a certain truth has permeated into my mind, and, in the process, into my heart as well. It is the fact that everything I do reflects something. And as I sit and ponder this fact, I wonder, what is my reflection?
    It seems to me, that the more I allow God to work in my life, the higher and higher He pushes the bar of my personal standards. Each time I feel like I have arrived at the highest ground, He pushes back the fog to reveal uncharted territory. And, I have to admit, it is rather cool. How dull it would be if we never had room to improve! If we remained on top of the same lowly hill all of our lives. Instead, God offers us a continual adventure of climbing higher and higher up the mountain He calls holiness. I have found that the air gets thiner and thiner and the path steeper and stepper, but oh how the view gets sweeter and sweeter!
    But today was another "pushing back the fog" type of days. And God asked me a simple question. What are you living for? He often asks this question, but today it was more pointed. He asked, "What is the reason you wear those clothes? I am not asking if you are modest, but what you wear tells a lot. Would you say they tell about Me? Or why do you take the time to watch ________? Would you say that you are living for Me in front of a TV? Why do you eat that? Do you have self control? What's your real motive in doing school, and working? Am I your true objective? How much of your day is just going through the motions and how much is really living for Me? I don't desire for you to live for me on occasion throughout your day Jillian. Living is a 24-7 constant thing you do. I don't want you to reflect me here and there, when your doing this and that, but I want you to reflect Me and never stop."
    Everything I do reflects something. Even if as a WHOLE, MOST is reflecting Him, I am cheating Him of my all and therefore dishonestly holding back something that isn't even mine, and faking myself into believing I am dong a good deed. What an awful fragrance that would be in front of my Holy God, what an offense to the price He paid to purchase me.

    "Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body." 1 Corinthians 6:19-20