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Archive for September, 2007

Balancing Act

Balancing Act

Originally uploaded by Kiki Karia.

Several months ago, our son Jeremy showed us this trick he had learned to do. He had taken a glass, a straw, a toothpick, a fork and a spoon. He then placed the straw inside the glass on an angle. Then he took the toothpick, intertwined the fork and spoon in the middle of it and balanced it all on the very tip of the straw. I was amazed, and so was his Sunday school class of 11-13 year-olds. It all has to do with the laws of physics and engineering. Way beyond my pea brain for sure! I began to think about balance, and how life itself sometimes seems to be in such a delicate balance. I thought about my life and how it sometimes seems like I am performing a juggling act just to maintain a balance between work, home life, my spiritual life, recreation, rest, etc. And yet God has it all under control. He is completely balanced and helps me to get back on an even keel when I’m tottering.

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Heartspring Pond and Future Falls

Originally uploaded by Kiki Karia.

Last Saturday, after the guys who had helped Mike and Jeremy with the constructing of our backyard pond had left, I sat down at the computer to blog on the event. A while later, I was interrupted by Mike calling me to come outside. “Now what”? I irritably muttered. My whole day had been spent taking pictures, doing laundry, getting drinks for all the guys and fixing lunch for them. I had made them a big pot of my homemade Italian minestrone soup. I was tired and needed some “me” time. Reluctantly, I stepped outside. Mike motioned me over to the pond, and to my surprise, I saw this heart-shaped rock mortared to the inside of the pond. Mike had found it amongst the stones he had bought for building the pond and falls. Instantly my irritation vanished, and my face broke out in a big smile. It was a special moment as Mike and I held each other. I told him that we should name the pond. He suggested “Heart Springs”, and it has stuck. I’m looking forward to seeing Heartspring falls when it is finished and perhaps dipping my tootsies in the tranquil water. More to follow in future posts.

heart-pond-2.jpg

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For the past month or so, my husband Mike and our son Jeremy have been laboring to build a pond and waterfall in our backyard. Mike had been wanting to do this now for a few years, but circumstances just didn’t seem to work out until now. He had tried to find a contractor willing to bid out the job, but nobody seemed interested in tackling an undertaking this small. Finally, Mike and Jeremy decided that they would just do it themselves. Mike paid a visit to a pond and waterfall operation in Escalon, CA where he picked up the pond kit and other necessary items he would need. He also bought a DVD that showed step-by-step instructions on building your own pond. He was ready to roll.

He and Jeremy began by digging the hole and adding topsoil to build up the area behind our three redwoods from where the waterfalls would originate. Mike visited a Rock Source in Vacaville and found a 500-pound rock that he thought would be just perfect for the waterfall. It was delivered to our driveway about 3 weeks ago, and there it sat, too heavy to move any further. Mike enlisted the assistance of Jeremy, his friend Mike, and Bro. Louie (The Bear), to help with moving the rock into the backyard where the pond would be located. Today was D-day. I had been fretting and worrying in my mind about this rock move. I had visions of someone hurting their back or getting a hernia from trying to hoist this heavy stone. Needless to say, I had also been praying and asking God to let this operation run smoothly today. Mike has a lower back problem that flares up from time to time. Bro. Louie had abdominal surgery back in April, and I was “worried”!

The guys started the work at 10:00 am, and while chiseling a small piece of outcropping on the rock before they moved it, the rock split in half horizontally! It was a clean split, and because of this happening, they were able to move the top and bottom halves separately. This made the job a lot easier, because now they were only hauling 250 pounds instead of 500. Plus it lifted a big load of worry off my mind! Everything went smoothly and worked out great. Mike and Jeremy mortared the two sections of rock together onto the shelf they had created for it. Later Mike and I were talking, and we both agreed that God orchestrated this whole event. Mike told me that they probably would have had a much harder time moving that rock as one piece. I believe God caused that rock to split and worked everything out. He answered my prayers, and I am so excited about the outcome. It never ceases to amaze me the way God arranges things in our lives. I can look back on my life and see so many situations that seemed impossible until God stepped in and turned things around. Once again, today I was reminded of what an awesome God I serve.

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This Sunday I sponsored my first Pastor’s Breakfast. One of the members of our church, Sister Sonya, had seen this done on another church’s website, and thought it would be a great way to welcome new converts and visitors to the church. Plus, a chance to visit with their new pastor and share a meal. On the second Sunday of each month, a team of ladies organizes the breakfast. This month was our second breakfast, and since I had never organized it before, of course I was a little nervous, wanting everything to run smoothly. I arrived at church about an hour before the breakfast was to commence. Hope was there to meet me. I had set up the tables and chairs on Friday night, so all we had to do was set up the food. Everything should flow easily, right? As I inserted my key into the front door and began to turn it, the key remained steadfast in its vertical position. It would not turn!!! I tried both doors, but to no avail. We then walked around to the back doors and tried them. Still no success!! Oh, what were we going to do? I called Sonya on her cell and all I got was voicemail. Time was running out, or so it seemed. Suddenly, our music director Cliff pulled into the lot. It was 8:10am. Without a minute to spare, I hurried over to Cliff and told him our predicament. He promptly unlocked the door, and we hastily entered and began setup.

Did I tell you that we are in a remodel program near the back of the church? The multi-purpose room where the breakfast would be served happened to be right by the construction work, and lo and behold, the floor was laden with drywall dust and other particles. By this time, some of the other ladies arrived, and they so graciously mopped the floor. Since the kitchen had been demolished, we did not have a source of water to wet the mop. Not to worry, Hope used “TOILET WATER”!!! They say that necessity is the mother of invention, and now I see why.

It was now 8:55am. Pastor had arrived, and all the food was in place. The theme I chose for the table was grapes. Our church name is Promise Land Worship Center. We have a beautiful sanctuary with lush silk trees and plants, depicting the promise land of the Bible. So I felt that grapes would go right along with our name. Now we excitedly awaited all the guests who would be coming. Molly showed up first, but Molly is really not a newcomer. She has been attending our church since earlier in the year. Yet it was still nice to see her smiling face. Ten minutes passed, fifteen, twenty. Where were our visitors? Last month’s breakfast had such a good turnout. As we were wondering about this, we realized that during our weekly services, the pastor’s breakfast had not been announced. Somehow, it had been forgotten, and none of us noticed this. Some of us had made phone calls the night before inviting visitors to come, but nobody showed….until about 9:45! We had our one and only visitor. Mary had never been to our church before. She had seen the sign a few days earlier, and the word “Worship” really appealed to her, she told me. The day before service, Mary had driven to our facility to check it out. One of our members was there doing yard work, and he told her the times of the services. Mary was so surprised that we had a morning and an evening service. She said that not many churches did that anymore. Mary met our pastor and had herself a cup of coffee. That was all she wanted.

Several minutes later, during the worship service, as the music was playing and the praise team singing, I saw Mary on the other side of the sanctuary with eyes closed and arms raised in worship to the Lord. She later told me how much she enjoyed the service, and she even returned for the evening service. I am looking forward to God doing great things in Mary’s life and through this new ministry of the pastor’s breakfast.

Mary enjoying a cup of coffee pastors-breakfast-mary.jpg

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