Monthly Archives: August 2006

Day in the life of LA…

Well, the kids had their first day of school yesterday (Wednesday) & they survived! Thanks for your prayers regarding that.
2006-08-31--1st-day-of-scho.jpg

It is so different than the tiny Christian school that they attended in Minneapolis, it is almost funny. 2,000 kids at this school, vs. about 100 kids last year. I will try and take some pictures of the school tomorrow.

They dearly miss some of their friends from Minneapolis, but they are making the best of it. They are so brave.

Also today, driving around trying to figure things out. We only got lost once today – so that was an improvement.

2006-08-31--city-streets---.jpg

Also, learned something new….

They actually have ‘tree trimmers’ (or palm-tree trimmers) — who take care of all of the trees. Got caught in a traffic jam today because they were taking care of a bunch of palms on Sunset Blvd today…

2006-08-31--palm-tree-trimm.jpg

Advertisements

God stories (long post…)

Michelle and I do not want to be the type of Christ-followers who see God in ‘living color’ when something good happens, and then not even acknowledge God’s presence, or disregard God’s hand in our lives, when challenging things happen. However, that being said — we also do long to be a couple and a family that is very grateful and stands in awe of God’s blessings and how God takes care of his children.

This summer in our final preparations before our move to California, there have been challenging situations that have come up. Things that have almost pulled the rug out completely from under our feet. In the midst of that, again and again God has been providing for us and taking care of us.

We will say it again, we don’t want to make the Christian walk, to be so simplistic that if we do this (pray, give money, serve, etc.) then God will bless, like a genie in a bottle. However, we do want to see and be thankful for how God does respond and answer our prayers and how his hands have supported us so much of late.

Rick Warren says this about how God builds a person while they are attempting to build a ministry: “…problems (will) start popping up. The two most common types: (people) and circumstances. Don’t worry. It’s all a part of God’s plan. “At the present you may be temporarily harassed by all kinds of trials. This is no accident – it happens to prove your faith, which is infinitely more valuable than gold.â€? (1 Peter 1:6-7 Ph)”

Then, “…God provides a supernatural answer. Miraculously, things fall into place! God loves to turn crucifixions into resurrections so you can see his greatness. “I expect the Lord to deliver me once again so I will see his goodness to me ….â€? (Ps. 27:13)

Here are a few things that God has miraculously (at least for us) been bringing into place…

CAR SITUATION
If you have been following our story – you know that our van completely broke down a few months back. With where we were at with support-raising (meaning financially) there was just simply no way we could go out and buy a nice, fairly new car. So we bought a 1991 Toyota Camry with 100,000+ miles on it, to replace the van and there were things that were starting to go bad with that vehicle also.

Well, I met someone (Craig) just a few months ago through my support-raising travels. He and his wife Holly heard about our dilemna and they prayed about it, and both felt very strongly that they would like to help out. So, they graciously (amazingly, unbelievably so!) wanted to give us their vehicle. It is a Dodge Caravan, and it is only a couple of years old. To be honest, it is the nicest vehicle that we have ever driven! We even had another couple (Scott & Michelle) generously offer to give us their car also! It floors us, how generous people have been, without ever asking for their help.
2006-08---family-with-the-v.jpg

MOVING SITUATION

Another new friend (Adam) asked us a while back how we were getting our stuff out to Los Angeles. We told him that we were simply going to be renting a big moving truck and driving it out ourselves. He came back to us and asked if he could drive the truck out for us and wanted fly back to Minnesota on his own dime — amazing!

2006-08-27 Penske truck.jpg

It would have been a ton more work to drive this big truck out ourselves, and so Adam blessed us more than he knows.

SCHOOL SITUATION

We have mentioned this before, but will mention it again about the kids school. With how late in the school year we applied to get into a magnet school in Hollywood, it was nothing short of a miracle that the kids got accepted to get into the school. Thank you again for your prayers for us regarding that! It starts this week already.
2006-08-27- Thomas Starr.jpg

SUPPORT-RAISING SITUATION

Lastly, the weekend before we left to come out to California — I was really worried about many things, one of which was our finances (a topic that comes up again and again in my mind.) I think if I was perfectly honest, I was wrestling with… ‘will God take care of me? Will people forget about us, once we move out to California? Will he be attuned with everything that my family and I need, and will he provide?’

It was a Sunday afternoon (the day the mail does not come obviously), and there was a knock on the door. A woman was at the door, whom I had never met before. She said she lived 2 blocks over (at 3400 Grand Ave & we lived at 3400 Garfield Ave) and she had found a letter under her porch which she was cleaning out that day. It was ripped and dirty and barely holding together. This is how it had looked…

2006-08-28---envelope.jpg

In it was a large check for our missions-organization (completely intact), that someone had given for us. Now miraculous or not, it was for us a situation that put wind in our sails. It showed us that God can literally rain manna from heaven if he wants to and he will take care of us.

Matthew 6:31-33 “So don’t worry about having enough food or drink or clothing…Your heavenly father already knows all your needs, and he will give you all you need from day to day if you live for him and make the Kingdom of God your primary concern.”


welcome to California

well, we made it to California last night…

2006-08-27---welcom-to-Cali.jpg

(sorry did not update the blog yesterday – something was going on with my wireless that I could not get on-line.)

After 2.5 days of driving, the 2nd day — through some amazingly beautiful country in Colorado & Utah…

2006-08-26---Utah.jpg

…we finally arrived at a (new) friend’s place last night in West Hollywood (he is out of the country in Africa on a missions trip). So, we can stay here for up to 13 days — until we find a place of our own.

2006-08-26---Genesis-house.jpg

We also drove right through Las Vegas yesterday. We took an exit & drove down the ‘strip’ — never been there before – that is a crazy place! The kids loved every second of it.

2006-08-27-Las-Vegas.jpg


leaving Minnesota

Well, Wednesday we packed up & yesterday left Minnesota for the big move to California.
2006-08-24---Uhaul.jpg

It felt like we were just leaving to go on a little family vacation. It did not feel like we were leaving for good.

Not sure if you can see the little ‘welcome to Iowa’ sign or not (right next to Michelle’s foot)….

2006-08-24---leaving-MN.jpg

We got started way later than expected (afternoon instead of morning) — so we made it as far as Nebraska last night. I was getting really tired so pulled over at the 1st hotel/motel we found — which was not the nicest hotel I have ever stayed in…

2006-08-25---hotel.jpg

(didn’t tell Michelle and the kids that when we walked into the room — saw a huge bug scurry across the floor) — oh well, slept good and saw a beautiful sunrise here this morning…

2006-08-25---sunrise.jpg

pray for safe travels for us – if you would.

blessings,

Greg, Michelle, Caleb & Elisabeth


…another good-bye

Met for coffee again another very good friend — Steve. We have known each other for only a little less than 2 years — but I have gotten to know him on a deeper level than I have with almost anyone I ever have in my lifetime, in these last 2 years.
(I think it is his hair style, that causes me to feel a ‘kindred-ness’ with him.)
2006-08-22---SteveS.jpg

I will miss you my friend. Thank you for the stimulating conversations, the times we have laughed together, cried together, solved all of the world’s problems together and have brought out the best in each other. Blessings to you.


laughter – good for the soul

“A cheerful heart is good medicine” (Proverbs 17:22)

Caleb & Elisabeth — looking at my college 1985 yearbook. (I think it had to do somehow with my ‘feathered’ hair)

2006-08-21-kids-laughing.jpg


saying goodbye

Met my good friend Ryan for breakfast, here this last week. It was hard to say good-bye. With us moving this week to L.A., I probably will not see him for a while.

2006-08-20.jpg

You are a good friend Ryan — thanks for your support, belief & accountability in my life.

Here is a shot of Ryan with the server who is there whenever we meet early in the morning at Keys. Her name is Annie — the best server in Minneapolis — bar none.

2006-08-20b---Ryan---Annie.jpg