Hannah, Kindergarten & Harrison. 5th Grade
Sometimes in Texas I have thought that driving an hour and 15 minutes to doctors, mall, and grandkids is a terrible inconveninece. But 90 miles in North Dakota is nothing.
Travel Comments I hear:
"Oh, the nearest mall is only 2 1/2 hours away."
"My doctor is in Bismark - 3 hours."
"Sams? 5 hours to Billings - but they have really good shopping."
"She's not here - she's visiting her daughter in St Paul (10 hours)."
"I just drove in from Protland - It's only 14 hours."
"We drove to a Beth Moore Conference in Denver."
"He's gone to Texas to see his grandson play baseball."
1200 miles to my grandkids?
Piece of Cake!
Many years ago while in Colorado, I heard the Salvation Army Acappela Choir Sing at a Sunday Morning Worship Service. After that encounter, I started watching and studying the organization and have come to highly respect it. It's roots are in an evangelistic crusader named William Booth from Great Britain. Beginning in 1852, Mr. Booth preached hope and salvation to desperately poor people in England. He also helped provide for their physical needs. The Salvation Army grew out of that ministry.
The Salvation Army in Williston, N.D. has a church on its premises and provides many services to the community. The things I know the army does in this area is to provide food, temporary lodging, and school supplies too needy folks. They have a food pantry and a thrift store.
I have been doing a little volunteer work in the Salvation Army. I have filled food baskets some, but mostly have helped sort donations in the store. The basement of the store is probably about 6000 square feet almost filled to the ceiling with bags of clothing. It is a discouraging task and I have come to understand what a terribly wasteful society we are. Especially us women, because most of the clothing donated are women's clothes.
Salvation Army generously hires people with little or no employment skills as part of their ministry. I have worked along side Heather (also from Texas) who works mornings at Salvation Army Thrift Store and afternoons at a local cafe as a dishwasher. The store seems to have about 8-10 paid part and full time employees and not too many volunteers.Cheryl also works part-time and Cheryl is the busy manager. I have a met a few volunteers who are doing some community service time there. I look forward to seeing Esther, who should win the frequent shopper award, because she is there every day spending a little of her social security check on some treasure or another.
Salvation Army Mission Statement:
The Salvation Army, an international movement, is an evangelical part of the universal Christian Church. It's message is based on the Bible. It's ministry is motivated by the love of God. It's mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination.
When Christmas rolls around, be sure to put some money in the bucket.
It goes to good causes.
The Fairview Bridge is about 10 miles from our RV.
The bridge crosses the Yellowstone River
and has only been lifted once in its lifetime,
in 1914, shortly after its construction.
It was used by both trains and automobiles.
The $500,000 lift span never had to be raised
to allow passage of a barge or a boat.
Trains stopped using the bridge in 1986.
Automobiles, driving on planks,
stopped crossing the bridge in 1955.
I pray I don't waste the costly gifts God has given me.
I pray I'm never a historical novelty.
But it is very beautiful.
North Dakota has the lowest unemployment rate in the nation and people flock here from every state looking for work. Some have sold all their belonging and come with the family to this oil patch expecting their problems to be over. When they arrive, they find that there are no available hotel rooms, apartments, or houses. Many people (even families) are living in cars or tents in the city parks and campgrounds. The motel near us sometimes allows people to bed down in the lobby. The Salvation Army is extremely busy feeding newcomers that haven't found work because they don't qualify for the available jobs. It's a sad, sad thing. Nabors Drilling has a man camp, where 24 men stay in each 12 man trailer (they work shift work and share the beds). When a new apartment building or hotel is built, Halliburton, Basic, BJ, and others lease the whole thing for their employees. Any houses listed for sale or rent, go immediately - in spite of the high cost. This is an incredible place. As for us, we are living in a 5th wheel RV until the first freeze. We have been looking for housing since we got here, but haven't found anything. Just trusting God.
I love hearing truth from God's Word and knowing it is for me.
I love it!!!
Today I was reading Exodus 14,
about the Israelites crossing the Red Sea.
As the Egyptian Army pursued them, Moses told them to:
Fear Not (v. 13)
Stand By (v. 13) and see what the Lord will accomplish for you
Keep Silent (v. 14) while the Lord fights for you
Move Forward (v.15) instead of crying out
Go Through (v.22) the parted sea
I have been fasting and praying about my own Sea of Uncertainty:
How long will we be here? Where will we winter?
When can I see my grandchildren?
Should I look for a job? Health? Retirement?
Insurance? Houses? Land? Bills?
blah, blah, blah
But this morning I heard God say: .
"Fear Not". "Stand By." "Keep Silent." "Move Forward.:
"And just Go on Through that Sea of Uncertainty"
"See what I will accomplish."
"I will confuse your enemies."
"You will come through the other side to Victory and Provision"
Then I read my facebook friend, Jo Anne's posting today:
"Have you come to the Red Sea place in your life where,
in spite of all you can do,there is no way out, there is no way back,
...there is no other way but through?"
What an Awesome God!
There's a farmer's market every Monday morning in Williston. I buy cabbage, onions, squash, rhubarb, green beans, cherries, but not beets! One of the vendors asked where in the south I am from (I wonder how he knew). I told him Texas and he replied, "I'll have okra next week." How did he know that fried okrie and fresh black-eyed peas are my very favorite food. But there are no black-eyed peas here. :(
It's impressive to me that so many people garden and can here. Every house I have visited has a root (rhymes with foot) cellar full of jelly, jam, beans, and pickles. I spent my growing up summers doing exactly that. Hoeing, watering, picking, cleaning, cutting up, sacking and freezing it all. I stopped when I went to work. I remember later years when my parents' could not give away the corn and peas from their field gardens. All this canning makes me want to return to my roots (rhymes with shoots)!
Way to go all you self sufficient guys and gals. I'm taking notes.
I just cannot capture on camera the beauty of the wheat and hay fields. The hay pictured above went as far as the eye can see. This year has produced a bumper crop of everything because of the abundant rain.
It is incredible!
"The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few;
therefore beseech the Lord of the Harvest to send out laborers into His harvest."
Last Names Here:
They visit long lost relatives in Norway.
There aren't too many Floyd's or Smith's or Jones's or Hernandez's!
The name of the LORD is a strong tower: the righteous runs into it, and is safe
That Doesn't Change!