Sunday, July 29, 2012

North Carolina, Virginia Beach (almost done with the trip)

 You get Peanuts while you wait for your food. YUM!

I am glad I got a small, Dan got a large and it was a lot of food. 

I think I forgot to mention going to Ft. Jackson. What a great place to go and see the new soldiers in Basic Training. What an honor. We stopped and met with our friend and chaplain Randy. We saw a bit of his world, and he took us to Five Guys! WOW! Can I say yum! We had never gone there, but glad we waited to go there. Most of you reading this probably have already gone there, but alas I have been out of the country for 4and a half years. Things change and are new. This is my journey thru all the new.

So, we headed to North Carolina venturing to fayetteville to visit the Rodgers. the two daughters were former students of Dan in Wiesbaden and are in college. One is married with a little one. We got to meet her new hubby and daughter and of course Auntie Becke (thats Me) got to hold her. What a joy!!!!  We had such a great time reconnecting and enjoying each others company.  What encouraging words they shared with us. We were completely blessed by time with them.

Forgot one stop, in Georgia we made to see former students and friends; The Malmberg's. They are wonderful team members who faithfully pray for the ministry and us.  I  (Becke) had never met them, but they shared that they feel like they already know me since they have been praying for us for almost 5 years. That is the most humbling thing is meeting people who have prayed for you that you have not ever met. I am constantly blown away by the family of God! What a blessing to be able to encourage one another along our walk with God.

So, after Fayetteville, we headed to the Murrays in Virginia beach VA. Oh such sweet fellowship with one another and reconnecting with the whole family, parents and kids alike. Their oldest  was in 8th grade when we came to Wiesbaden, and she graduated this year from High school. Wow! Time flies!
We had the privilege of attending church with them on Sunday! Oh wow! The pastor gave such a wonderful powerful message about stewardship. It was super challenging personally thinking of how I give my time to the Lord.  Below is the link for the message. I challenge you to listen and seek the Lord in this. Be warned, the Lord is moving!

We went to a great little diner for lunch before we headed on our way.  As we prayed and left, tears flowed, and I realized I need an emotional enema. I am amazed how so many hello's and goodbyes make the heart numb after a while. I never want to get to that point, but I am afraid (honestly) that I might be. Oh my heart hurts even admitting that. But, if I am honest, this life is full of hello's and goodbyes. Its hard, how do people do this? If you have pointers, please let me in on it.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

4 trips in one Blog!

Ok, I realize I haven't posted in a while, but here is my attempt to catch up!

After leaving Alabama, we drove to Georgia. We stopped in a small town near Columbus and were able to visit our friends and chaplain the Covey's. Such a great time of checking in, and seeing how the transition was going. Such a joy!

After lunch we went to Macon and stayed with another friend and chaplain who we are close with.
We went and visited lots of historical sites, and fun food adventures. Below are the photos of places we went.

 Momma Perry and I

 Randy and Dan.

 Alligator!! Yum!

 after dinner, this was the lake.

 Cow appreciation day at Chick-fil-a

cow #2

After Macon we traveled to Florida to stay with my (Becke's) pastor when I was single. Was so good to see them, and hear him preach on sunday. What an honor to call them friends!
 for sermon notes clink below.

 Ate lunch at a BBQ place in the Villiages. (an 80K + retirement comunity) People had their cars which were Gold carts. This is a souped up cart. 

 Dan and I, and The Lacognatas

We left Florida and traveled north to Augusta to visit a former student of Dan's. So amazing seeing students ten years later who still walking with the Lord, and seeing them as parents. What a joy!!!
Keely is a RN and she was able to tell us why we were feeling bad. Turns out we are allergic America! (hee hee... ) just allergies. 

Yes, we have been to so many places, but each one has such amazing memories, and specialness. We have truly felt blessed and overjoyed to spend time with all of our friends and supporters. 
After Augusta, we decided to take some down time for just Dan and I. So, off to Charleston, SC we went.  We stayed at Andrew Pinckey Inn. Such a wonderful place, where we were able to take some down time. 

There is many things I could share about Charleston. But what stood out to both of us where two things. First, on the second photo of Dan and I we were on the warf after dinner. Right after the photo a little boy came up to us and asked us to buy a grass rose. Dan asked what he was selling it for, or rather what the money was going too. The little boy stood in silence, and didn't know what to say, he just was stunned and looked around to find his master who was watching. So dan said take this money and keep it, and you keep the rose to sell it to someone else. You keep this money. Right after he went away and was forced to report to his master. It was so disturbing to us in the following ways. First, this was modern day slavery. This boy was enslaved (along with about 10 other boys) to this older guy who was  the provider. When we walked by the older guy, he was awful in talking with the boys. I know there is modern day slavery, and we want to do all we can to help but what do we do with this???  So we prayed....
Second, how is it, one block from were we where there was lavish lifestyles and richness. How do we justify this? Do we sell everything, and give everything we have??? How can we enjoy staying in a nice hotel while knowing there are these kids who are living like this. What can we do??? We knew the Lord blessed us by moving on someones heart to let us stay here. How can I enjoy knowing this? What as Christians are we suppose to do??? anything? 

Friday, July 13, 2012

Economy (both Physically and spiritually) in America

We have already driven through 6 states and a common theme we notice driving through is the boarded up businesses and houses. It hurts to see the America I knew with thriving little stores (mom and pop shops) that are no longer, and are replaced by the big guys. I understand the big guys are cheaper, but there is something amazing about knowing the owners and having that personal touch with them.

Also another thing was the corn crops that were all dead and dying. The terrible heat is wrecking havoc on all sorts of things here. Many farmers are having to plow their fields... how will they be able afford losing a crop. Breaks my heart. But.... what really breaks my heart is seeing images like this constantly

What has happened that all these churches are closed? Are the people of God not sharing, not building the church up? Were people not giving? Moved away?  Or is it cause they were and the Lord needed them in other churches... it really has made us think about the next 20 years, what will the church look like?   Just some thoughts we are wrestling thru and the observations of what we are seeing...

Reunited! And still loving Jesus

10 years ago, Dan was an intern in Wiesbaden under Nate Johnson. 
These students were there in high school and now are 25. They are still passionate about God, and loving finding ways to serve him. One even shared that He is passionate about men being called to true biblical manhood! What a sweet time it was as we shared memories (although I was not (becke) in wiesbaden at the time) of Wiesbaden and Carolyn and Angel were at our wedding. We also had the honor of meeting two new spouses and sharing experiences. 
There was also a beautiful time of sharing lives heartaches and joys before the dinner with a few that will be etched in our hearts forever! We love you all and are so proud of you all! 

Keep loving and serving Jesus!

True Friends....

We have been blessed with a group of friends, (3 couples) who encourage, challenge, and love each other well. 4 years ago, well March 08 when we said goodbye we had a vision of reconnecting in 2012 where all of us would reunite. The vision became a reality as we finally all were together again to laugh, love and cry together! 

The blessing of being together and doing life together for a week was such a blessing in many ways. First, there was no reconnecting awkwardness as we picked up right where we left off but all of us had grown. Second, to see the kids come up to us (all of us) and say we love you, and have been praying for you... was truly an honor. (Man, I love those kids)
Third, fellowshipping over a meal 3 times a day, (and a good meal at that) was soothing to the soul. Something about eating together bonds us. (maybe its the calories united us)
Fourth, each night we would gather when the kids went to bed to share and ask questions of each other that were deep and soul exposing. There was no awkwardness in asking these questions cause we all completely trust and love each other. We felt safe to expose our souls to one another. This is what the church should feel like. (hm... why doesn't it?)

There were so many blessing that came from the week that they are to numerous to mention, but those that were there know that this time is etched in our hearts and minds as a sweet moment of pure Christian fellowship and love! I love you guys Maciels, and Pulos' with all my heart and would trust you with my life. Thank you for loving us and ministering to us with your friendship. My heart is so full!

 Gluten Free Cinabonn Rolls! (Leanne you rock)
Extroverts unite!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

flea's and Tiq's

One of the things I love about Arkansas besides our friends living here, are the amazing finds at the flea markets and antique shops! Upon going in, your mind (at least mine) was filled with  ideas that were almost overwhelming. Pinterest people would be happy!!!!

 Call us the mariachi Band waiting for friends at the airport! So.... many looks, but was worth every penny!

 Coming to our friends house, we were all packed in the car! Poor Dan and Candice were in the back with no room!

 This was one of the buildings! Was amazing!

 This place was awesome.... each building had tons of antiques and fun and interesting stuff.

 Its so Hot (107) here that even the records melted! Wow, now that's hot!

Thursday, July 5, 2012


This has moved my heart in a big way. What can I do to help! Lord show me where I can get invovled.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Little Rock, Arkansas

----LOOK AT THIS! These two guys came in together, and didn't talk at all just played on their phones. The only interaction they had was showing the other person something once in a while on the phone. So I ask, whats the point of coming in together for a meal??? Are we all so use to interacting with the computer gadgets and not eachother? Where is the one on one conversations??? (I think I am getting old)

We drove about 2 hours to Little Rock and took some down time. We stayed in a Days Inn, and looked for the places Local's go to for dinner and dessert. So, we found 2 places that were simply amazing. We went to a Pizza place called "Damgood Pies" and "The Purple Cow". Both places were great! We have a 5 cheese pizza with spicy white sauce instead of tomato paste. At the Purple cow, we both got shakes. Dan got a chocolate mint, and I got a peanut butter/chocolate. What was amazing to us was the amount of shake we got. There was a filled glass, and then another container filled and frozen for round two. We were both stuffed as we rolled out and headed back to the hotel.  Now, its off to have a wonderful week with the Maciels and Pulos'. We have been planning this for 4 years, and can not believe it here!


Our next stop was Memphis, TN. No, we did not go to Graceland (was 72 dollars per person). We stayed with some friends who moved there from Wiesbaden. One of our students who met the Lord on one of the Spring break trips. This was a sweet time to reconnect, and step into her world. Also was great to reconnect with Mom and Dad we have recently retired from the Military.
We went to the Zoo, and also went to the Children's Museum of Memphis, and of course, BBQ!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012


June 28th we started our trek around the states with a stop to see Dan's brother and sister in law. They live right outside St. Louis and we haven't seen them since they got married a year ago. We had such a good visit, and time of bonding! Man, we love them! 

We headed to Springfield, MO on the 29th, and stayed through the 1st. We arrived, and got right to seeing the area. We went to Bass Pro Shops MEGA STORE. This was amazing, it was so huge! See photos below for a little glimpse of the place. We ate at Hemingway's restaurant where you could eat near the aquarium. Great fellowship with the Pridgens, and then we were off and roaming the store. 



Crazy sauces were on the list of items to see. So that is what we did. We jetted off and saw the rest of the store. We then went to some flea markets (of which there were tons) and then off to a Christian Theater where we saw a performance called "Living with Style". The Premise of the show was an elderly man who recently lost his wife, listened to the Lord calling in His life and went into a hard retirement home. He witnessed to all of the tenants and shared no matter how old we are, God will still use us, and just cause they were old, doesn't mean that their life was over. Was such a good message in other areas as well in talking about how we live today, that how much time do we take for others. How much do we share the Lord, the " Good News" or do we whiz on by people cause we have something else to do. How important is it to dive into peoples hurt and torn lives??? 

We went to Branson the following day where we saw an old five and dime store. They had lots of toys and memorabilia from times gone by. This was such a treat to walk thru memory lane. 
We ended the day with dinner and a show. The show was Yakov, a Russian comedian. It was a story of people from the Russian Circus. This was a fun time as they served us a AMAZING dinner in our seats. Our seats had a pull out table similar to an airplane, but the tables themselves had magnets attached so the tray of food would not tip and crumble all over the floor. 

Missouri was a great place, but what made it the most amazing was the Pridgens. They are such amazing people and we felt so encouraged by them.