A family called the Hassens, whose oldest son Josiah is enrolled in CollegePlus!(allrightsreserved) boldly invited everyone to a gathering at their house. Of course, having nine kids in the family already, they're used to the noise and bustle. Mrs. Hassen and her awesome daughters Hannah, Ellianna and Bethany made fantastic meals for us, my favorite being the biscuit for breakfast one morning. I also loved drinking raw cow milk. (I helped milk the cow one night, too.)
We sat around and talked a lot and being homeschoolers, used big words.
Insert something somewhat random here - I've been noticing lately, in my study and struggle against pride, that there is the thought and idea in some homeschool circles that if you are homeschooled, you are automatically 12x better and smarter than anyone who's been publicly or privately schooled. (I'm not saying that anyone in the CP group was like that- just a general impression I've been getting for awhile.) While I do think that homeschooling is more along the lines of what God calls parents to do, I know that he doesn't want that kind of pride. Pride only kills. Here's a bit from Beth Moore's book Praying God's Word that I really like.
My name is Pride. I am a cheater.
I cheat you of your God-given destiny... because you demand your own way.
I cheat you of contentment... because you "deserve better than this".
I cheat you of knowledge... because you already know it all.
I cheat you of healing... because you're too full of me to forgive.
I cheat you of holiness... because you refuse to admit when you're wrong.
I cheat you of vision... because you'd rather look in the mirror than out a window.
I cheat you of genuine friendship... because nobody's going to know the real you.
I cheat you of love... because real romance demands sacrifice.
I cheat you of greatness in heaven... because you refuse to wash another's feet on earth.
I cheat you of God's glory... because I convince you to seek your own.
My name is Pride. I am a cheater.
You like me because you think I'm always looking out for you. Untrue.
I'm looking to make a fool of you.
God has so much for you, I admit, but don't worry -
if you stick with me -
you'll never know.
In this picture, Aaron Nix is sitting talking to my brother Joseph. Aaron Ackland is looking at Joseph and Leah is smiling kindly at the person just out of frame.
Highlight of the trip was my friend Anna. She was the one who called me twelve times in the preceding week, urging me to go. She's insanely cool and amazing. Since she had to go home early, I went with her. Yes, I invited myself, but I was very sly and surreptitious about it. Mrs. Reynolds (Anna's Mom) adopted me as her eighth daughter.
Anna's like a pure ray of sunshine - full of Jesus.
We read a book on the way back to her house. There were awkward feet on the front.
Despite that, it was a good book called Set-Apart Femininity by Leslie Ludy (she wrote When God Writes Your Love Story with her husband Eric).
Anna driving. I didn't drive, but it was a hybrid! Awesomeness. It would read out the miles that they could go on much gas there was. I loved it. Plus we listened to Bebo Norman. ^_^
Once we got there, Anna had to catch up on her classes she'd missed by joining all of us in OK. I only bugged her every few moments - mostly her siblings kept me busy.
Zhenya and Anna over the railing - Zhenya has the most energy I've ever seen and is absolutely amazing.
Faith is nine.
Hope is seven and gives great hugs - like Anna!
This is Allison - sorry for the bad picture - I only had my phone along.
Matt - I love how God pretty much always provides guys who are like younger brothers in my life when I'm away from home. Matt's good at slinging dish water without wetting the walls. I was not as skilled.
I didn't get pictures of Jon, Christina or Sarah, unfortunately. Just imagine them to be as beautiful as the other Reynolds.
Mrs. Reynolds gave me a book about Scripture memory called His Word In My Heart by Janet Pope. I recommend it - I'm learning Psalm 1 right now.
P.S. I'm so glad it's Sunday tomorrow! I'm excited for a day of rest and worship.