Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Pray for Us

It was one year ago that Ethan sat among several pastors in Northeast Romania, teaching through God's word and ministering to them. Friday, he will return to this beloved country again, instructing them in the Old Testament books of Ruth and Jonah, as well as teaching and leading them in preaching from the Old Testament.  For the last couple of years, these men have been attending classes taught by TLI instructors and growing in knowledge and discernment.  It will be a privilege to return once again.

Iasi is located in NE Romania near the border with Moldova
And let the beauty of the LORD our God be upon us, and establish the works of our hands for us. Ps.90:17

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Sampler From Granny

The little girls enjoying what has been completed so far on Granny's Quilt.
Some of the treasures that I inherited from my grandmother after her recent death were fifteen unfinished quilt squares.  These squares were designed to be a part of a quilt sampler intended for Ethan and me.  She created them during a time when she was experiencing intense pain after receiving treatment for breast cancer.  I believe that as a result of her pain and all the medications, some of the squares were a bit skewed.

I tried to add borders to some so that they would all have the same dimensions.  Next I had to find a way to put them together.  My sister-in-law, Sharon, was here a couple of weeks ago, so she gave me some advice on that.  She is definitely a more experienced quilter than I am.  I am in the process of putting it all together right now. I added some borders and squares of my own at the top and bottom.  My favorite squares that Grandma made so far are the house square, the three-dimensional blocks, and the spools of thread.  The next step will be to buy batting, made a fabric back, and begin to quilt it.  It should be an interesting experience, and I hope will honor my grandma and all of her hard work.

Then on to the knitted sweater that Grandma started during the last year of her life here on earth!  That will be a challenge, too.  Any advice from knitters out there on how to complete it would be very appreciated!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

To My Husband On Our Anniversary

I Love You Because…
The Igloo you built for our kids.

You love God and have made His interests first priority in your life.
You only have eyes for your wife.
You will wait to make a decision so that you may seek God’s best for us.
You are able to have a “cheerful heart [that] does good like medicine,” especially with the kids when they are grumpy.
You have a manly, godly energy that keeps you going.
You are SO good to your wife and children.
You have purposed to give to your wife and children your time and your ear.
You will set aside your own desires to play “hide and seek” with your children.
You are a great handy man.
You are a creative, excellent problem-solver, who will build something yourself if it will solve the problem in the best way.
You are frugal and have self-control.
You gave up a path that would feed your ego, your pocketbook, and your reputation in order to serve God’s interests. Hallelujah!
You sing hymns with your family.
You read the Bible to your wife and children.
You go for bike rides, hikes, and rural and urban adventures with your family.
You stand up for Truth even when it is in opposition to family, friends, and the world “If you abide in My word, You are my disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:31-32
You have used your gifts to minister to the Church, even in adversity.
You enjoy the beauty of the earth and help others to give glory to God through it.
You have persevered through some of the most difficult of circumstances, and overcome, and you will overcome “by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.” Rev. 12:11

Your devoted wife,           

Friday, September 20, 2013

Faces of Growth and Change

Lizzy received earrings and got her ears pierced as a birthday gift from Grandma and Grandpa. She was so brave!

Peter John (5th), Lizzy (3rd), and Amy's (Kinder.) first day of school. Peter John started at a Christian school this year, while the two girls are homeschooling as well as School of Choice. As you can see, Peter John has grown quite a lot this year.

Gretchen is in seventh grade this year at a Christian school. She started in the middle of August. We are grateful we live close enough to bike or walk, if necessary.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Favorite Children's Books This Year

1. Little Pilgrim's Progress by Helen L. Taylor

2. Dangerous Journey by Oliver Hunkin (adaptation of Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan)
3. The Silent Bells by William MacKellar
4. The Door In The Wall by Marguerite de Angeli
5. By The Shores Of Silver Lake by Laura Ingalls Wilder
6. Little House In The Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder
7. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
8. Alexander The Great by Jane Bingham
9. The Story of Ruby Bridges by Robert Coles
10. The Whipping Boy by Sid Fleischman
11. The Voyage Of The Dawn Treader by C.S. Lewis
12. The Mandie Collection Vol.1-11 by Lois Gladys Leppard
13. The Magician's Nephew by C.S. Lewis
14. Landon Snow series Vol.1-5 by R.K. Mortenson
15. Bob Books (Beginning Readers) by Scholastic
16. The Quiltmaker's Gift by Jeff Brumbeau
17. The Children's Bible in 365 Stories by Mary Batchelor
18. The Adventures of Tintin Vol.1-8 by Herge
These are many of the books our children have enjoyed this past year, most of which they have read themselves. Some were read to them on our couch in the afternoon or evening.  When I was a child, I was not much of a reader, but since becoming a parent, children's literature has blossomed in our lives and in our imaginations. Some of these books we have read over and over again, particularly The Children's Bible in 365 Stories and Little Pilgrim's Progress.  They are worth that.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Songs of Thankfulness and Praise

Psalm 100:4-5
Enter into His gates with thanksgiving,
And into His courts with praise.
Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.
For the Lord is good;
His mercy is everlasting,
And His truth endures to all generations.

Elizabeth Sharon Larson on our move in 2006 from Ukraine to Hungary
Thank you, Lord God, for your faithfulness.  Thank you that you hold Your chosen ones with your hand. We are like little children that are carried on Your back. The beloved of the Lord shall dwell in safety by Him,
Who shelters him all the day long;And he shall dwell between His shoulders.” Deut. 33:12  We are safe in Your arms.  Thank you that when we go through trials and defeat, You are faithfully working all things together for good.  Your arms are underneath us. "The eternal God is your refuge,
And underneath are the everlasting arms;" Deut. 33:27

Thank you, God, for my husband. He is Your son. You created him, you called him, and saved him from his sins. You made him your own. Thank you that my husband is upheld by Your righteous right hand (Is. 41:10) Thank you for his integrity, his faithfulness to me and to our family. Thank you for his willingness to use his multitude of gifts and abilities to serve God, even though it means giving up wealth and worldly honor and selfish fulfillment. He is laying up treasure in heaven, not on earth. Thank you, God, that You have led him all these years. Thank you for my husband's love for You and for Your truth. At personal expense, he has upheld truth and followed You.

Thank you, our Awesome God, for blessing us with Lizzy. We celebrated her birthday yesterday.  She is eight now, and I am so grateful for her. She brightens our lives. Thank you.

Thank you, for all Your blessings. Bless Your name.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Almost Over

Summer is nearing its end, although you would not guess that judging by the ninety degree weather we are having.  Yesterday we watched a baseball game in Fargo and baked in 98 degrees F.  Our sweet Gretchen has begun seventh grade already at a new school and appears to be loving it most of the time.  Her Junior High picture is classy.  Gretchen is in the front row, the fifth from the left.

Peter John is also beginning fifth grade at a new school.  We met his teacher two weeks ago, and she made a very good impression on us.  I cannot wait to get him back into school.  His summer boredom is about driving me up the wall! Thankfully, he has discovered the game of chess, courtesy of his cousin, Mark, who spent a few weeks in this area in July.  He is a chess nut who taught my little girl, Lizzy, to play last year.  Now Lizzy likes to teach others.  The kids know how to play it on the computer, and we have a great board called "Quick Chess" that is good for amateurs like me who need to play much younger "experts."  At least I can get through the game when I play this version.

Well, one relief to our children's summer boredom has been the presence of their cousins (four of my nieces and nephews) and another friend whom I have been babysitting during the month of August.  There are all kinds of activity going on around here!  It is a challenge keeping food on the table and in their bellies and keeping enough dishes clean for eight kids!  I think I spend most of my time in the kitchen these days.  Along with preparing meals, I have also been canning and freezing veggies that were given us by our very kind and generous landlord.  So far, I have frozen about 45 quart bags of sweet cord, about 15 jars of salsa, and 3 jars of tomato juice last week.  I will have to take a break this week to put on a garage sale.  Hopefully we can get rid of some of the excess in our home through this sale.

This is a busy life, but we pray for God's glory and for a heavenly perspective every day.  Jesus, be our Lord, save us from our sins, and comfort us with the presence of the Holy Spirit who is with us.  We love you, Jesus. Amen.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Fair Days

Peter John, Lizzy, Gretchen, Amy at the 4H Shake Shack

A couple of Gretchen's drawings
Peter's 1st Prize legos in the yellow box and the pink dress I sewed.
First Prize ribbons for PJ!!
The County Fair is SO fun for our family because we like to create things.  We are not superstar athletes, models or brains, but we love to make things with our hands.  Each of the kids entered items into the fair in the Open Class Exhibit, and EVERYONE was awarded ribbons for their work. This was only made possible because our friend, Christine, offered to pick up our things at the end of the fair.  She took some pictures of our items on display, too.  Our family went to Bottineau, ND for the weekend to visit Ethan's parents, so we couldn't stay to pick up our things at the end of the fair.  We are SO grateful for Christine's assistance.  It is always rewarding to be able to show some of the things we have worked hard on throughout the year.


"We give thanks to God always for all of you, constantly mentioning you in our prayers, remembering before our God and Father your work of faith and labor of love and steadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.  For we know, brothers loved by God that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not only in word but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction." I Thess. 1:2-5a

When God has turned on the light in our souls, given us the gift of the Holy Spirit, and saved us from our sins through the blood of Jesus Christ, we belong to Him.  Jesus warned that there would be those who claim to have the rights as sons and daughters like true believers. They might try get to God some other way by climbing over the wall rather than going through the narrow gate (only through Jesus), but they are only thieves and robbers.  Jesus said some would act like Christians and grow around the true plants, the wheat, but they are weeds and in the end they will be pulled up and thrown into the fire.

But there are some who have entered through the narrow gate of Jesus Christ, people like Christian and Hopeful from John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress, who are fully convinced that Jesus Christ is Lord.  They receive the gospel of Jesus when they believe.  They believe that He has removed the burden of sin from their lives through the sacrifice of His life and blood shed on the Cross.  Their lives are changed when they are transferred from the Kingdom of darkness to the Kingdom of His love and God's power has forgiven their sins.  They turn from idols to the Living God. They now worship the Father in spirit and in truth (Jn. 4:23). Their faith in Jesus in evidence they are chosen by Him.  We do not have to wonder when they die that they are now with God worshipping before His throne in Heaven.  Jesus is their life.  Can I convince you to turn to Jesus, who loves you and gave His life for you, today?  You can have full assurance that your sins are forgiven and that you will spend eternity in Heaven with Him. All your shame will be removed because His blood washes away Your sins when you confess and believe in Jesus.  Nothing will be able to separate you from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 8:39).

Friday, July 12, 2013

Summer is (Finally) Here!

Our garden is under two shade trees, but it is still growing well: Lettuce, Spinach, Kale, Beets, Tomatoes, Beans, Zucchini, Cucumbers, and Marigolds.
Lizzy and Gretchen at Eagle Lake today

Peter John with his cousin from Colorado

Everyone had to make their own castle with found rocks for decoration
 It feels good to enjoy warm weather. We are preparing for a busy few weeks ahead.  The month of June flew by because of all the non-stop action.  We moved the end of May, Peter John and Lizzy enjoyed a week at  Bible Camp, Ethan and I went to CO for TLI meetings, and we attended a Larson Family Reunion the last weekend in June.  In the midst of all the busyness, by Grandma Beverlee Frank passed away here in town.  She had been suffering congestive heart failure, kidney failure, and diabetes.  It was hard on the kids since they were separated from us when it happened (Ethan and I were in CO at the time), but God comforted us all and we were reunited.  The funeral was very uplifting as we thought about Grandma being in heaven with Jesus.  That made it joyous, though we were grieving.  The girls and I sang "Blessed Assurance" at her funeral, and the whole congregation sang many Gospel songs that brought comfort and hope.  We finished the funeral with a special piece that my sisters and dad sang together called "I've Got A Mansion."  Grandma loved country music and especially country Gospel music.  This was a great way to end, thinking about heaven and God's blessings to those who belong to Him.