This year we got back to a fun tradition started a few years ago, of having a ‘Turkey Trot’ race on Thanksgiving Day. Little things like importing fun holiday traditions into our lives here in China really go a long way in helping our family ‘thrive’ here rather than just ‘surviving’.
Everyone participated… some moved faster than others!
Elizabeth lead the pack along with her friend Ma Hui!
Can you tell Anna made the numbers everyone wore… she assigned herself “#1″!
Nate and Miss Michelle!
Even Hope was getting in on the fun!
Hope getting some help from Nate!
Time is flying by these days! Well, this time the latest ‘reality check’ that time is NOT standing still is that our little Nate has turned SIX years old!
We sure do love having Nate around, he is so much fun and his sisters and little brother love playing with him. Continue reading “Nate is SIX!” »
It’s hard to believe, time has flown by so quickly since Hope sprang into our lives in Hong Kong two years ago, but it really has been two years since Hope was born!
Hope is such a fun part of our family, it’s hard to imagine what our family was like without her!
Hope knows how to say that she is “two”, but she has not mastered how to hold up two fingers yet. So when you ask her how old she is, she proudly says “two” and hold up five fingers.
I think she’s trying to figure out how to make these shoes squeak!
Oh, and she LOVES to dance!
While it’s not surprising that the Presbyterian Church (USA) has done this, it is sad to see another example of just how far from the Gospel this denomination has strayed!
Here’s why the PCUSA rejected the hymn “In Christ Alone”: There’s one, key line in the third stanza that created a barrier — and debate: “Till on that cross as Jesus died/the wrath of God was satisfied.”
When wrath goes, so does the central meaning of the atonement of Christ—penal substitution. At the end of the day, the cross itself is the stumbling block, and that is why the PCUSA cannot tolerate this hymn.
What we believe about God and about His Son Jesus is the most important thing about us. And yet countless people recoil at the God of the Bible and turn instead to a god of their own imagination. Any formulation of deity that excludes God’s justice and wrath against sin is not the God of the Bible.
A wrathless god shorn of His justice is no god worth worshipping. Nor is he a god able to convict and save sinners. When wrath is taken away, so is the gospel. And that is why this discussion matters.
Presbyterian Branch Rejects Famed Christian Hymn ‘In Christ Alone’ From New Song Book Over ‘Wrath of God’ Lyrics
Billy Hallowell on July 31, 2013
It’s no secret that the Presbyterian Church (USA) — which is different from other branches of Presbyterianism — collectively takes a more liberal approach to theology. Most recently, the denomination is gaining attention for its rejection of the hymn, “In Christ Alone.” Rather than including the song in its new hymnal book, PCUSA axed it — an action that may leave some faithful believers scratching their heads. Continue reading “Famed Christian Hymn ‘In Christ Alone’ Rejected” »
I first learned about “Sky City” about a year ago, it seemed unrealistic, but then again, this is China, you never know about these things! Several months ago I was in Changsha with a friend and decided to ask a taxi driver what he thought about the “World’s Tallest Building” being built in his very own backyard. He promptly and confidently told me that it was just a rumor and that it was not true!
Well, it seems the rumors were true! They broke ground on “Sky City” this week! I’m not sure why, but I’m fascinated by the idea of this building, which is said to hold 30,000 residents and workers every day. It is designed, in part, to be a self-contained community with schools, shops, parks, a hospital, everything you’d find in a typical community – only stacked vertically in a building that when finished, will be the tallest building in the world!
Erica asked me if I’d be willing to go into this building when finished. My response was that while I wouldn’t want to live in this building per se, I would love to explore this building when its finished and observe how it gets utilized by the people within.
Would YOU be willing to go into this building? Oh, did I mention, they plan on building this 800+ meter tall building in 3 months!
Sky City China: world’s tallest building breaks ground
Dubai’s 828-meter Burj Khalifa has less than a year left as the world’s tallest building.
China’s projected 838-meter (2,749 feet) Sky City broke ground in Changsha in central China on July 20. Continue reading “Sky City China: world’s tallest building breaks ground” »
To say that China has a pollution problem is not saying anything that anyone (outside of Baghdad Bob) doesn’t already know to be true. However, there was some research that was recently published that attempted to quantify the extent of the pollution and it’s effects on the people living in China, and I must say, the findings are sobering.
Disclaimer: I am fully aware that research of this nature can often be exploited and reported in a way to drive agendas. I am also aware of the impossible nature to put concrete numbers on things that exist within a complex situation. Having said that, I do believe that there is something to this research, even if the numbers are off a bit!
I was especially moved by this statement in the article “…severe air pollution has cost the 500 million people living north of China’s Huai River during the 1990s more than 2.5 billion years of aggregate life.” Wow!
HONG KONG (CNNMoney)
Severe pollution has slashed an average of five and half years from life expectancy in northern China, as toxic air has led to higher rates of stroke, heart disease and cancer.
These are the findings of a landmark study conducted by an international team of researchers, including academics from China’s most prestigious universities, published this month in the scientific journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
The researchers found that severe air pollution has cost the 500 million people living north of China’s Huai River during the 1990s more than 2.5 billion years of aggregate life. Continue reading “Air pollution cuts life expectancy by 5.5 years in China” »
Luke turned ONE today! I can hardly believe it! A year ago, there was so much ‘unknown’ surrounding your entrance into the world. Luke, you are such a blessing to our family, and you are loved very much!
Luke just wasn’t into smiling for the photos on this day… oh well, we still have time to ‘train’ him how to be photogenic like the rest of his siblings!
This article on leadership from Rick Warren gives counter-intuitive advice that seems to be incompatible with the popular thinking on leadership, however, it seems to me to be very true! The hard part of being a ‘leader’ using Biblical models and principles, is that the Biblical model stresses humility, servanthood, transparency, and elevating others above yourself, yet those you are trying to lead may have a hard time distinguishing your efforts to lead them Biblically with the perception that you are a weak leader or that you lack leadership skills (in the conventional sense.) Even so, it is worth the risk to ‘lead like Jesus’, gaining the approval of the Father, even if it causes you to not gain the approval of man!
Most modern books on leadership, whether Christian or secular, give the same advice – be confident, never admit fear, maintain control and be composed, be convincing and never show weakness. But Jesus had a different style altogether. Instead of leading from a position of strength (lording authority over people), Jesus led from a position of weakness, becoming a servant.
The fact is, everybody has weaknesses. And our weaknesses are multi-faceted. We have physical, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual weaknesses. The question is, what do you do with your weaknesses? While most people deny, defend, or excuse their weaknesses, Christian leaders can embrace them and ask God to use them! When God works through weak people, His power is shown more clearly!
Let me define what I’m talking about when I use the word weakness. I’m not talking about a character flaw that can and should be changed. A weakness is any limitation in my life I inherited or can’t change. How do you lead through weaknesses you didn’t ask for and don’t have the ability to change?
Continue reading “How to Lead Through Your Weaknesses” »
(CNN) — From the “Three Represents” to the “Harmonious Society,” Beijing has long been fond of clunky political slogans.
But the “Chinese Dream,” widely considered as the governing catchphrase of Chinese President Xi Jinping, has a decidedly more captivating ring.
Xi started using the expression even before he took office. In November last year, he said, “the great revival of the Chinese nation is the greatest Chinese Dream.”
And in March, in his keynote speech to the National People’s Congress soon after his formal appointment as president, Xi said: “We must make persistent efforts, press ahead with indomitable will, continue to push forward the great cause of socialism with Chinese characteristics, and strive to achieve the Chinese dream of great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.”
But what does that really mean?
Continue reading “Interpreting the Chinese Dream” »