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February 2017 PDF Print E-mail
Newsletter

 

Family Covenant Ministries (formerly Christian Home Educators Fellowship) Faithfully honoring God, equipping generations, and serving the homeschooling community for the past 33 years!

www.FamilyCovenantMinistries.com

 

THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME February 2017 Information

http://www.theresnoplacelikehome-summers.com/

 

Our Family’s Vision and Mission

http://www.theresnoplacelikehome-summers.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=section&layout=blog&id=4&Itemid=1

 

Family Covenant Ministries (formerly CHEF) Information and Activities

 

1.  FCM Events

     a.  FCM 33rd Annual Graduation Meeting, Thursday, March 16

     b.  FCM 19th Annual Heart to Heart Tea, Thursday, March 16

       (1)  God’s Grace is Greater Than Our Fear-Widowed with Six Children, Leslie Obenhaus Shares about Their Family Business and the Joy and Hope the Family Shares for Their Future

       (2)  Home Defense Against Intruders-Jedidiah and Josiah

       (3)  What Are You Doing with the Rest of Your Life-Candy

     c.  FCM Airsoft Gaming and Training, Friday-Sunday, April 21-23

     d.  FCM 23rd Annual Art Festival and Photography Contest, Saturday, May 6

     e.  FCM Purina Farms Field Trip, Thursday, May 11

2.  FCM Notes

     a.  Thank You for FCM’s Letter on Gorsuch

     b.  More Disturbing Information on Gorsuch’s Church

     c.  A Homeschooler’s Letter in Opposition to Gorsuch’s Appointment

3.  Legislative Updates from FCM Lobbyist and Homeschooling Attorney David Klarich

4.  Needs and Services

     a.  Music Lessons-Both Live Online Classes and Private Lessons and Classes in Person

5.  Special Opportunities

     a.  Visual Manna Art Training and Mission Trips

     b.  MAC Homeschool Program at the Zoo, April 25 or 26

 

 

There’s No Place Like Home Articles

 

1.  Heart to Heart-Nothing Short of an Invasion

     a.  99 Percent of 97,000 Resettled Somalis Have Been Muslim

     b.  Louis Farrakhan: The Future is Ours

     c.  Growing Muslim Population in St. Louis

     d.  Good Reasons Why Our Founding Fathers Limited Immigration

     e.  Disturbing Statistics

     f.  Solutions

     g.  More on Immigration

     h.  Amnesty for Illegal Immigrants: A Policy of False Compassion

     i.  Manifestation of Antinomianism

     j.  Noah Webster’s Opposition to Those Who Used Immigration to Advance Their Subversive Doctrines

2.  Casting a Vision for Multigenerational Family Business-Riedel Glass Founded in 1756

3.  New Homeschoolers, Part XV

     a.  Homeschooling No Different from What You Have Been Doing Since Their Birth

     b.  Preschool/Kindergarten Curriculum

4.  Delightful Surprises-King Arthur’s Baking Supplies

5.  In the Library-The Character of an Upright Man

6.  Family Outings-Nathaniel Reid Bakery, One of the Top Ten Pastry Chefs in America

7.  Summers on the Farm

8.  The Joy of Country Living-I Luvs Yuh Like a Pig Luvs de Mud

9.  Dismantling of America

     a.  Convention of States Should Be Rejected

     b.  Change It or Obey It? Why the Constitution Is the Solution

     c.  Victory in Virginia

     d.  How Obama is Scheming to Sabotage Trump’s Presidency

     e.  The Obama Administration Takes a Parting Shot at Personal Freedom

     f.  Thomas Sowell Commentary: History Shows the Folly of Disarming Lawful People

     g.  Neil Gorsuch Nomination Update

10.  Restoring America

     a.  Trump Signs Executive Order to Withdraw from 12-Nation Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Deal

     b.  Praise Report from Congressman Jason Smith

     c.  Defunding Planned Parenthood

 

If you get a blank email from us (mailto: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) on your cell phone, please try looking at the email from your computer instead.

 

 

 

FCM ACTIVITIES

 

altFCM 33rd Annual Graduation If you have a graduate, please email your graduate’s name, parents’ names, address, phone, and email address to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Shortly after we receive your information, we will email our Welcome packet. Our next meeting will be held on Thursday, March 16 from 1:00-3:00 p.m. at the beautiful Salem United Methodist Church, 1200 S. Lindbergh Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63131. Conveniently located on the northeast corner of Hwy 40/64 on Lindbergh Blvd., a little north of Frontenac Plaza. To give you an idea of the focus of our graduation you may read the godly and inspiring charge, “Destined to Make a Difference,” which was presented by Bob Wells in 2010 by going to http://www.familycovenantministries.com/. Click on “Services” and scroll to the bottom of the page.

 

 

altFCM 19th Annual Heart to Heart Mother/Daughter Tea (Mothers without Daughters are Welcome!) Thursday, March 16, 7:00-10:00 p.m. at the Hawken House Hearth Room, 1155 S. Rock Hill Road, St. Louis, MO 63119. Preregistration cost is $11 per person; $12 per person at the door. Mothers without daughters are welcome to come. Come and enjoy great fellowship with other homeschooling moms, practical and inspirational teaching, tea and delectable pastries.

 

Home Defense: What You Need to Know When the boys shared what they learned from their Home Defense class, I was amazed to realize that everything I thought I would do if someone broke into our home was absolutely wrong. Jedidiah and Josiah Summers will be sharing important lessons you need to know to protect your family against intruders.

 

God Worked Out His Perfect Plan for Us and Provided a Hope for the Future Widowed at age 44 with six children ages 3 to 14, no college education, a mortgage, and no prospect for a job, Leslie Obenhaus faced the future with confidence because God had prepared the way for her to follow. Before Leslie even knew how much she would need the support from her family and a means of making a living for her children, God miraculously orchestrated the acquisition of the 30 acres next to her sister’s family and laid the groundwork necessary for owning a business. Through their prayers, research of possibilities, and their saving towards a family business prior to her husband’s passing, Leslie was able to carry through with their plan. More importantly, God was laying a foundation for trusting in Him through her husband’s actions and teachings that no matter what the situation or how they felt, they must stand firm on the truths in God’s Word. God continues to provide everything the family needs as Leslie and her children work together in their embroidery business. Working from home has given her children a hope for the future and serves as a springboard for pursuing other businesses and interests. There is excitement in the home again, as each of the children continues to share ideas of expanding the business, starting new ventures, making improvements on the property, and selecting spots for their own homes on the property. Come and be blessed as Leslie and her daughter Grace share God’s providence, the great joy of working together, and the secure hope the family possesses for the future. Jeremiah 29:11 “‘For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.’”

 

What Are You Doing with the Rest of Your Life What do you want your life to look like in 10, 20, 30 years and your family’s life in 100, 200, 500 years? What are you doing about it? Many homeschoolers right now are floundering because they did not plan for their family’s future. They lived day by day, and now that the children are scattered to the four corners of the country, they no longer have a purpose or a hope. In this fast-paced presentation, Candy Summers will be prompting you to think ahead and plan for your family’s future.

 

You may either pay online or mail your check payable to FCM, c/o Sonia Summers, PO Box 586, Fredericktown, MO by March 14 to reserve your place. If you are unable to pay online, or experience any difficulties, please contact us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call 314-920-6135.

 

To pay online, use this link and choose 19th Annual Heart to Heart Mother/Daughter Tea by clicking on the arrow on the Event List drop-down menu.

https://familycovenantministries.com/index.php?option=com_rsform&formId=12

 

Under Reservation, make sure the Ticket Type “Family” is selected if more than one person is coming. Then select the appropriate “Number of Attendees” in your family.

 

Directions: If you take Hwy. 270 south, exit at Big Bend Road. Go east on Big Bend approximately 4 miles to S. Rock Hill Road. Go right on Rock Hill for 2 blocks. The house is just past Hawken Condominiums on the right. Barn is on right in back of Hawken House. There is no Big Bend exit if you are going north on Hwy. 270. Therefore, if you take Hwy. 270 north, go east on Hwy. 44. Exit at Big Bend Road and go east for approximately 1.5 miles to S. Rock Hill Road. Then follow above directions.

 

 altFCM Airsoft Gaming and Training, Friday-Sunday, April 21-23, after 2:00 p.m. on Friday through Sunday afternoon on our farm in Fredericktown. $75 per person. All meals and drinks provided. Snacks welcomed. Perfect for anyone looking for group training or improving Airsoft skills. Open to anyone in the mood for a good time.

 

We will be learning:

Basic land navigation

Infantry movement techniques

Traveling techniques

Attack formations

Crossing danger areas

Proper reactions to ambush

 

Essentials to bring: Camping equipment and camp chairs; Airsoft equipment; Gun-I recommend a full automatic rifle; Safety glasses-clear and tinted; Biodegradable BB’s-a MUST; Clothes that are able to blend in and withstand crawling around in the brush. I will have plenty of BB’s available for sale.

 

Other helpful items but not necessary: Compass or GPS, canteen or other water carrier

Recreational items: You are welcome to bring fishing poles and bicycles.

RSVP by April 14. Make checks payable to FCM and mail to Josiah Summers, PO Box 586, Fredericktown, MO 63645.

For more information, call Josiah 314-920-6135.

 

 

 

altFCM 23rd Annual Art Festival and Photography Contest, Saturday, May 6 at Salem United Methodist Church, 1200 S. Lindbergh Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63131. Conveniently located just off Hwy 40/64 on Lindbergh Blvd., between Hwys 270 and 170, a little north of Frontenac Plaza.

 

We are pleased to continue this year the Assorted Arts category, which includes such projects as sculptures, origami, string art, fabric art, mosaics, needlepoint, knitting, macramé, woodwork, etc. (no video will be accepted).

 

Art Festival Categories Age Eligibility:

Fine Arts: Ages 5 and up

Assorted Arts: Ages 5 and up

Photography: Ages 10 and up

 

Each eligible participant may submit up to 2 projects in each category.

 

For example: Homeschooled children ages 5 and up may submit up to 2 projects in the Fine Arts category AND up to 2 projects in the Assorted Arts category; AND ages 10 and up may also submit 2 photos in the Photography contest. Homeschool graduates are also welcome to submit projects in all 3 categories.

 

Our families are cordially invited to view these artwork pieces created by our gifted children, to be displayed at Salem United Methodist Church. Before the awards ceremony, admire the artwork while you enjoy hors d’oeuvres, cookies, cold drinks and classical music performed by homeschooled children and families.

 

Saturday, May 6 Schedule

                                   

4:30-5:30 Viewing of artwork, voting for People’s Choice Awards (hors d’oeuvres, drinks, music and fellowship)

6:00-7:00 FCM Art Festival awards ceremony

9:00 Project retrieval and clean-up

 

IMPORTANT DATES FOR PROJECT SUBMISSION

 

Saturday, April 1 Early registration form submission: $5 per project for all registrations postmarked by this date. Early fee maximum per family: $60.

 

Saturday, April 15 General registration deadline (MUST be postmarked by this date): $6 per project. General fee maximum per family: $72.

 

Saturday, April 29 Deadline for project drop-off

 

Saturday, May 6 FCM Art Festival artwork viewing and announcement of winners

 

To download the registration form, and for additional details on registration procedures, drop-off locations, guidelines for acceptable artwork, etc., go to www.familycovenantministries.com under Calendar of Events, May 2017.

 

Registration form

http://www.familycovenantministries.com/files/2017_fcm_art_festival_registration.pdf

 

Guidelines and procedures

http://www.familycovenantministries.com/files/2017_fcm_art_festival_guide.pdf

 

If you have any questions, please contact Joe and Teresa Carr at 314-521-5668 or email at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

 

 

 

altFCM Purina Farms Field Trip, Thursday, May 11, 11:30 a.m. at 200 Checkerboard Loop, Gray Summit, MO 63039. Event is FREE. However, you must sign up ahead of time either by phone 314-920-6135 or email Sonia at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . To register, you must leave your name, email address, phone number, number of adults and children attending.

 

Come join us for an exciting day at Purina Farms where we will take a Better with Pets interactive tour showing why life is better when shared with a pet, view canine performances, watch a milking demonstration, take a wagon ride, enjoy swinging on a rope in the hayloft, crawl through tunnels, and pet many different animals.

 

No outside food allowed. However, you may either bring a picnic lunch to enjoy at one of the area parks or pre-purchase food from their snack bar. Purina has informed us that we must give our food orders 32 hours in advance. After you register, we will email a menu.

 

Directions: Located just 10 minutes west of Six Flags St. Louis on Hwy 44. Take the Gray Summit exit #253 and head north on Highway 100 for 1/2 mile. Take a left and head west on MM for approx. one mile until you reach the Purina Farms entrance on the left-hand side of the road.

 

 

 

FCM NOTES Each correspondence deeply blesses our hearts. Thank you.

 

Thank you, Candy! I certainly agree with the reasons for the hesitation to support him (Gorsuch). Thank you for the information. Hope you have a blessed day!Lonedell, MO

 

The article on why FCM was opposed to Gorsuch’s nomination was very good! Thank you.Fenton, MO

 

Lydia Kaiser shares: Gorsuch is a member of St. John’s Episcopal Church in Boulder, Colorado (https://pjmedia.com/election/2017/01/30/president-trumps-top-three-supreme-court-picks-have-serious-problems/). The website for the church promises that they are an “inclusive” congregation that practices “contemplative prayer” and engages in “social justice programs.”

 

The church is green-friendly and has a function on the website so that people can see how much energy the church solar panels are producing. The church’s impastor is the Reverend Susan Springer (and all the deacons are females). Springer, Gorsuch’s impastor, is a renowned social progressive who is an outspoken supporter for gay marriage, gun control and all things liberal. Springer is quoted as saying…

 

“I don’t think anybody in my faith tradition is out to destroy marriage between a man and a woman. I think we are out to find a way to offer the same blessing and the same sense of inclusion to same-sex couples. And I think we stand as prophetic witness, that same-sex couples ought to enjoy the same legal benefits, if you will, as heterosexual couples…Any time you take a stand as a faith leader, whether it’s gun control, same-sex blessings, capital punishment or immigration, it’s very risky — and yet the paradox is, we are called to take a stand” (http://www.dailycamera.com/ci_22903609/lafayettes-flatirons-community-church-goes-public-opposition-gay).

 

Springer also recently organized a city-wide event to speak on the dangers of “gun violence” (http://www.dailycamera.com/news/boulder/ci_30107657/boulder-churchs-49-bells-project-brings-attention-gun).

 

The Episcopal Church of which Gorsuch is a part started to have “full inclusion” toward the LGBTQXYZLMNOP community in 1976, added its first sodomite clergy member in 2003, voted to authorize a “blessing” on same-sex unions in 2012 and made the rite of marriage available to sodomites in 2015. The Episcopal Church has also repeatedly defended a woman’s “right” to murder her unborn child.

http://polemicsreport.com/2017/02/01/the-religion-of-trumps-supreme-court-pick-neil-gorsuch/

 

Lydia Kaiser’s letter: Please do not appoint Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. You promised to appoint a pro-life justice. Although he looks good on the outside, it is very telling that he would sit under the counsel of a church pastor who is anti-life. The Constitution promises the protection of LIFE, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, so to submit to the counsel of someone who would deny life for any reason, is un-American. I understand that he may rule to send the issue back to the governance of the states, according to his textual convictions, but the issue of Constitutional protection of life is even more fundamental than the issue of states’ rights, which has already been badly eroded, so not something in which I put much hope.

Please appoint Charles Canady, Jennifer Elrod or Edith Jones. The main objection to Canady was his age of 60 years. If this disqualifies him, then President Trump was too old to take on the more grueling task of President at age 70.

 

 

LEGISLATIVE UPDATES FROM FCM LOBBYIST AND HOMESCHOOLING ATTORNEY DAVID KLARICH

 

Please see legislative updates from David Klarich at the FCM website under Legislative Alerts:

http://www.familycovenantministries.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=5&Itemid=7

 

January legislative update

http://www.familycovenantministries.com/files/2017_fcm_01-27-2017.pdf

 

February legislative update

http://www.familycovenantministries.com/files/2017_fcm_02-17-2017.pdf

 

We are honored and greatly blessed to have David John Klarich as our homeschooling attorney and registered lobbyist. He homeschooled his own five children. David was elected to the Missouri Senate (1994-2002) where he served as the Chairman of Judiciary; Chairman of the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules; Vice-Chairman of the Committee on Rules, Joint Rules, Resolutions & Ethics; and member of Judicial Resources; Ways and Means; Pensions and General Laws; and Local Government and Economic Development. He was elected to the Missouri House of Representatives (1990-1994).

 

David drafted, sponsored, and passed legislation relating to virtually all subjects. Included among his legislative accomplishments are the creation of the Child Custody, Abuse and Neglect Commission; created and/or protected the Uncompensated Tort Victims Fund, Crime Victims Fund, and Unemployment Compensation Fund; passed a law that prohibits frivolous lawsuits by making inmates pay for their own legal fees; created a state program to put “at-risk” youth to work instead of turning to crime; created the first expedited capital crimes procedure; banned the death penalty for the mentally retarded; drafted and passed the first Violent Sexual Predators law, the Predator Registry, and Predator Civil Commitment procedure; defined and defended marriage; drafted and co-sponsored the “Safe Schools Act”; drafted significant civil, corporate, and judicial reform legislation; secured additional resources for education and transportation; and reformed property tax laws.

 

He also worked in private law practice with the Clayton law firm of Riezman Berger, P.C. In 2002, Mr. Klarich created and now manages a company known as Citizens for Policy Reform, LLC which provides government relations services before the United States Congress, Missouri General Assembly, and administrative agencies. He holds an A.B. in Biology and Chemistry from the University of Missouri-Columbia and an M.A. in Public Policy, and Juris Doctor from Regent University, Virginia.

 

David Klarich is in Jefferson City each day of the legislative session diligently working on our behalf both for us as homeschoolers and as families. Therefore, we are deeply grateful to God for providing us with such an experienced attorney who has served as both Missouri Representative and Missouri Senator for many years. David also handles our DFS cases and has been instrumental in helping our families in past years with issues concerning admission to technical schools, universities, the armed services, and work permits.

 

We also want to emphasize the importance of showing your gratitude to David for his service in the Missouri House of Representatives and the Senate and for all the many years he has served our (CHEF) FCM families for free. I know of no other state that has been blessed with such a tremendous service! Please make every effort to thank David for his sacrificial service by sending an email back to us so that we can forward it on to him.

 

 

 

NEEDS AND SERVICES

 

Music Lessons My name is Andrew Bishko. My wife Rachael and I are homeschool parents of three children, ages 5, 7 and 10. We are building and living in a straw bale house on our homestead about one hour outside of Springfield, Missouri along with our goats, chickens, dog, and cats.

 

I want to reach out to other homeschool families and offer my services as a music teacher. Right now I am offering an inspiring lineup of LIVE ONLINE CLASSES. Some classes on my schedule include: * Introduction to Songwriting * The Game of Songwriting * Introduction to Musical Improvisation * Piano Now: Play Fur Elise by Beethoven in Two Classes * Music of the World * Instant Blues: Intro to Blues Harmonica. For an updated look at all my classes, reviews, and to request a class, see my Outschool page at https://outschool.com/teachers/M-Andrew-Bishko.

 

Online classes or lessons can be done from the comfort of your own home. I use an enhanced video conferencing service that allows for a highly interactive experience. You can also request a new class section to fit your schedule, or even ask me to create a custom class designed for you and your family.

 

I also offer private LESSONS AND CLASSES IN PERSON in the Springfield, Buffalo, and Lebanon, Missouri areas. I teach in two music stores (Hoover Music in Springfield and Morgan Music in Lebanon) and also provide in-home lessons on a limited basis. These lessons can include: * Piano * Flute or Saxophone * Recorder, Native American Flute, or Ocarina * Accordion or Harmonica * Songwriting, Music Theory, or Family Band.

Some advantages to studying music with me: * EXPERIENCE: I have been a professional musician over 30 years and teaching over 25 years. I teach students from preschool age to seniors. I have taught privately, in private and public schools, and in colleges and universities. * SERVICE: I do not teach cookie-cutter lessons. Each student and family is unique with their own musical goals. I will teach you the music that you want to play. * INNOVATION: In order to serve you, I am constantly developing new teaching techniques that go beyond ordinary lessons. In addition to the standard classical approach, I have accelerated techniques to teach you music reading, chording, playing by ear, singing and playing, improvisation, songwriting, playing music for church, and more. * VERSATILITY: I play and teach a number of instruments, musical styles from around the world, and voice. * TRUST: I have recently passed background checks for public schools and Outschool. I can supply references from students, families, colleagues and employers. * RESPECT: As a homeschool father, I understand the care you have taken to provide the best learning environment for your precious children. I will respect your family, faith, and values and will direct my teaching to support and enhance what you yourself are teaching to your children.

 

Thank you so much for your time and consideration! These are the things I would want to know before hiring a teacher for my own children. You can learn more about me on Facebook, YouTube, and GigSalad. You can contact me by email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or phone/text: 417-733-3776.

 

 

 

SPECIAL OPPORTUNITIES:

 

[This information is communicated to you only as a service to our families. The information contained herein is not screened or verified by FCM. Please be discerning at all times.]

 

Sharon Jeffus shares: Art Training and Mission Trips There is a new phenomenon in homeschool and Christian education that gives students the ability to learn a subject well and then reinforce their learning by putting it to use on the mission field.

 

This year I am going to teach an advanced fine arts and graphic art course on an advanced high school level, and then give students the opportunity to use what they have learned and build their portfolio on two different week-long mission trips.

 

Art is a powerful tool in communication of the gospel. Many students are gifted in the visual arts but have not had the training and experience to use it effectively and with confidence in their churches and communities, and especially when they go on mission trips to serve the Lord and communicate the gospel. Everyone knows the power of an image to convey truth. Art transcends language.

 

The slogan of Visual Manna’s new art program is “BE BOLD, BE ORIGINAL, AND BE EXCELLENT.”

 

Goals for the new Visual Manna Academy Art Program

 

1. Students will learn a variety of art techniques in different media and explore finding their own style and their favorite medium.

2. Students will complete 20 works of art that will be appropriate for their digital portfolio, college entrance, freelance work, or AP credit.

3. Students will gain experience seeing their gifting in art used in a practical way by experiencing the opportunity to go on two mission trips that will be focused on creating art to use in ministry and encouragement.

4. Students will complete the program with 20 hours of online study and two weeks of practical use of their gifting (mission trips) in order to go into their communities and churches and use their gifting with confidence.

5. Students will cover graphic art programs using open source software and learn techniques in video, drawing, painting, sculpting, photography, graphic art, landscape architecture, architecture and costume design. When they choose their concentration, they will choose their area of career interest.

6. Students will get a solid foundation in art history and the vocabulary of the arts.

7. Students will get a strong foundation in the elements and principles of art. Cost is $300 (not including cost of mission trips, TBD by individual trip destination and necessary fees).

8. When graduating the program, Visual Manna will work to find them an internship that will further enhance their gifting with Christian companies and ministries.

 

For more information, please email mailto: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , call 573-453-6364 or visit http://www.visualmanna.com/.

 

 

Missouri Association for Creation (MAC) Homeschool Program at the Zoo

 

Where: The St. Louis Zoo in Forest Park
Date: Choose Tuesday or Wednesday, April 25 or 26
Time: Choose 9:30 a.m.-Noon or 1:00-3:30 p.m. 

 

Learn about the amazing design features of God’s creatures from MAC speakers, while seeing those animals up close. Special presentations on the following animals (list subject to change, but all are marvels of God’s creation): Tiger, Transcaspian Urial, River Otter, Bird Cage, Orangutan/Gorilla, Galapagos Tortoise, Sea Lion

Receive a colorful, informational booklet on the animals with “fill-in the blanks” from the speaker’s presentation (bring a pen or pencil). These booklets are great for later family discussions.

At each animal location, a speaker will give a 10-minute presentation about that animal emphasizing the remarkable design by our awesome Creator.

Ask the speakers questions about these animals or anything else about how God created our world and us.

 

Please register for the tour by sending an e-mail to  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it and include the following information:


1. Family name
2. Name of homeschool group (if any)
3. Which date and session you plan to attend – Tuesday or Wednesday/morning or afternoon
4. Number of people attending over the age of 5
5. If you can attend an alternate session
 

Children 5 and under are welcome to attend as well but just need not be included in your count. If the count exceeds the maximum size of the tour, you will be informed and put on the wait list for that session.
** In the event of bad weather, the tour may be rescheduled or cancelled. You will be notified by e-mail.

 

To cover the costs of the tour, we suggest a donation of $5 per family to MAC. After your attendance is confirmed, please wait until the week of the tour to make out your donation check, payable to MAC with “ZOO” in the memo line. Mail your checks to: 

Will Burgener– MAC Treasurer, 12015 Berkley Manor Drive, St. Louis, MO 63131.

 

We look forward to serving you and would appreciate your prayers that this event would glorify our awesome Creator, loving Redeemer, and powerful King.

 

 

THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME Celebrating 31 years of inspiration, encouragement, and biblical instruction www.theresnoplacelikehome-summers.com

 

Stay tuned as we are creating a brand new website for There’s No Place Like Home that will be brighter, prettier, filled with more pictures, easier to navigate, and more easily accessible for smart phones.

 

 

 

HEART TO HEART

 

Nothing Short of an Invasion

 

Obama Administration Resettled 50,000 Somalis, Most Muslim Roughly 50,000 Somali refugees have been resettled in the United States under President Barack Obama, according to official numbers. The figures were revealed in the wake of Monday’s attack at Ohio State University, during which police said a Somali refugee drove into a crowd of people with his car and then slashed several of them with a butcher knife. Police shot and killed the man. Eleven people were wounded. The Washington Examiner cited data from The Center for Immigration Studies that show the Obama administration has brought in tens of thousands of Somalis. And since the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, 99 percent of 97,000 resettled Somalis have been Muslim. http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/obama-administration-resettled-somalis/2016/11/29/id/761159/

 

On Sunday, February 19, 2017, in Detroit, Michigan (one of the largest Muslim communities in America), Louis Farrakhan gave a workshop entitled Have No Fear for the Future: The Future Is Ours! He stated, Let’s pool our resources to buy as much land as we can get our hands on. God is making us into a world ruler and the cornerstone of a kingdom that can never die. https://www.facebook.com/MuhammadMosque28

 

North St. Louis County is home to a growing Muslim population. There is a historic African-American Muslim community in North City and County. Within a short distance of Ferguson is Masjid Umar (formerly the Institute of Learning), located in the rugged Mark Twain neighborhood of North City. Masjid Umar has a Nigerian-American imam and a predominantly African-American congregation. To the north of Ferguson in the city of Hazelwood, you have the Dar al-Jalal Mosque (the largest mosque in the St. Louis metro area). Dar al-Jalal is a predominantly Arab (specifically Palestinian) congregation with a high percentage of store-owners in North City and County as congregants. Closest to Ferguson is the West Florissant Masjid in the city of Jennings. The West Florissant Masjid is a predominantly Nigerian congregation with a very diverse crowd at Friday prayers. Also, close to Ferguson in the Walnut Park neighborhood of North St. Louis you have Muhammad’s Mosque #28 of the Nation of Islam.

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/altmuslim/2014/11/muslims-in-ferguson-on-the-ground-and-active-since-day-one/

 

Our Founding Fathers did not encourage unlimited immigration. George Washington felt that immigration should be limited to “useful mechanics and some particular descriptions of men or professions.”

 

Thomas Jefferson saw the new government as a unique combination of the freest elements of English law and political custom. He was concerned that unrestricted immigration of peoples from lands unacquainted with the principle of representative government might undo the careful work of our Founding Fathers. “Yet,” he said prophetically, “from such we are to expect the greatest number of immigrants.”

 

Even if these immigrants could throw off the principles of the governments they left, Jefferson feared that they would merely pass “from one extreme to the other. It would be a miracle were they to stop precisely at the point of temperate liberty.” He added, “In proportion to their numbers, they will share legislation with us. They will infuse into it their spirit, warp or bias its direction and render it a heterogeneous, incoherent mass.”

 

Today, the annual tidal wave of over a million immigrants (legal and illegal) is endangering our American way of life. Currently, fewer than 15% of our immigrants come from Europe and share the heritage that made America strong. A majority of today’s immigrants are (consciously or unconsciously) undermining our customs, our culture, our language, and our institutions. Instead of remaining in their native lands and emulating the United States, they are descending upon our shores and trying to reshape the United States into the image of the lands they forsook.

 

*The U.S. admits almost 1,000,000 legal aliens annually, the highest sustained rate in our history

*For every 100 illegal aliens who find jobs in the US, 65 American workers are displaced

*Over the last 30 years, Congress has tripled legal immigration levels

*The Pew Research Center found that “If present trends continue, the population will rise to 438 million in 2050, from 260 million in 2005, and 82 percent of the increase will be due to immigrants arriving from 2005 to 2050 and their U.S. offspring.”

*Edwin Rubenstein, director of ESR Research and former director of research at the Hudson Institute, found that immigrants (legal and illegal) cost the federal government a net loss of $80 billion a year.

 

Solutions Supported by AIC

*Increase funding and manpower of U.S. Border Patrol; assign US. military troops to help the Border Patrol regain control of our southern border

*Reduce legal immigration levels to traditional levels of no more than 250,000 self-supporting immigrants per year

*End all federal public assistance to non-citizens except emergency health care

*Increase funding and manpower for the enforcement of laws to fine and incarcerate employers of illegal aliens

*Repeal federal bilingual education programs and bilingual balloting

*Prohibit affirmative action benefits for non-citizens

*Cut foreign aid and deployment of U.S. troops abroad to fund immigration enforcement. Our first duty is to protect our own nation and its people http://www.immigrationcontrol.com/?page_id=583

 

Immigration, Reprinted from September 2007 There’s No Place Like Home Newsletter

Keep in mind that this was printed in 2007. All the following statistics have greatly increased.

 

Common Sense on Mass Immigration is a 40-page concise booklet that explains the grave difficulties our nation faces as we deal with the many problems involved with mass immigration. It actually contains frightening statistics that should make all of us sit up and face the reality of these problems. Did you know that from 2000 to 2005 86% of U.S. population growth was the result of immigration? Did you know that we have 10 million illegal aliens in this country who are given free medical care and subsidized housing? Guess who is working so hard to pay for them? You and me! And did you know that their numbers are increasing by almost 1 million per year? Their entry into this country is nothing short of an invasion.

 

In some areas of the county, 12% of felonies, 25% of burglaries and 34% of thefts are committed by illegal aliens. In Los Angeles, criminal aliens cost the county over $150 million annually.

 

In 2000, about 8 million of the total 53 million school-age children in the U.S. were the offspring of immigrants who had arrived since 1970. This is equal to all of the growth in the school-age population over the last 20 years. Just education of illegal aliens’ children costs taxpayers $7 billion a year.

 

From 1997 to 2002 the number of uninsured immigrants rose by 2.2 million to 11.2 million. Even illegal immigrants, many of whom pay no taxes, are eligible for publicly funded medical care. Provided to them by the sweat of our brow!

 

Mass immigration is a threat to our nation’s health. Diseases nearly eradicated are breaking out again. Tropical diseases, previously unknown to the United States but prevalent in Third World countries including Dengue fever and Chagas disease, are appearing for the first time. Medieval ailments such as leprosy are resurfacing. Among the diseases carried into the U.S. by immigrants are tuberculosis, AIDS, cholera, measles, hepatitis and SARS. Hispanics, 13 percent of the U.S. population, account for 19 percent of the reported number of new cases of AIDS, more than three times the rate for other Americans.

 

Consider the startling facts that Common Sense on Mass Immigration addresses, which can be viewed here in its entirety:

http://www.thesocialcontract.com/booklets/common-sense-mass-immigration/common-sense-mass-immigration.html

 

Consider that these aliens have nothing in common with our Christian faith or our Christian heritage or Constitutional ideologies. They take our money, and then those who vote, vote to keep more coming their way. We must write our congressmen and let them know how we feel about this hostile invasion.

 

Last year, we had an opportunity to discuss at great length this issue with a homeschooling friend’s brother who happens to be a policeman in Houston, Texas. He said that America is fast becoming a Third World country as immigrants pour over our borders. Not surprisingly, Houston’s crime rate has escalated at an alarming pace; however, the illegal immigrants cannot be tried under our law and so are not detained for very long. Ironically, though, prison is not a deterrent to crime for them because the conditions in our prisons are far better than the conditions they left in their own country.

 

Can their crimes here be blamed on their inability to find work or acquire citizenship? After talking with two different homeschooling missionary families, each having served for many years in Mexico, we discovered that indigence and immorality define their existence. Both actually stated at different times that if it isn’t tacked down, the Mexicans will steal it. This is not surprising when we understand that the majority of Mexicans are not Christian and therefore feel no obligation to abide by God’s Laws. Quite frankly, when we consider the state of Mexicans’ spiritual darkness, steeped in idolatry and superstition, it is no wonder that their country is riddled with corruption and crime. So why would we want these people in our country?

 

Amnesty for Illegal Immigrants: A Policy of False Compassion

by John Vinson, President of Americans for Immigration Control

http://www.immigrationcontrol.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/33727_Immigration_Brochure.pdf

 

Manifestation of Antinomianism, Reprinted from February 2009 There’s No Place Like Home Newsletter

 

What causes men’s conclusions to differ so drastically with one another? Well, to adequately assess the reasoning behind one’s thoughts, we must examine their presuppositions, or in other words, their foundational beliefs. Cornelius Van Til best defines presupposition as an elementary assumption in one’s reasoning or in the process by which opinions are formed…a personal commitment…of beliefs. Presuppositions form…perspective in terms of which everything else is interpreted and evaluated…having the greatest authority in one’s thinking…

 

Observably different conclusions, then, reveal dissimilar presuppositions, and since God is truth and since He will not allow any rivals, by its very nature, truth is always in opposition to any other position. Let us take for example the view that America should welcome as many immigrants as desire to come to our shores because, after all, each of us are descendants of immigrants, and besides, America’s success depends on acquiring more brilliant minds and more hard working people. Sound plausible? Many Americans think so; however, as we shall demonstrate later, as Christians, we must compare all views with scripture to ascertain whether it supports or denies the validity thereof, because every thought must bear truth and thus be substantiated with scriptural and historical fact.

 

Our response to the preceding view would include such points as follow. First and foremost, God is Sovereign over all areas of life and governs all the affairs of men. Thus God blesses and curses, rewards or punishes according to our obedience to Him, and specifically in this case, according to our nation’s obedience as revealed in Deuteronomy 28. Therefore, America’s success will not stand on brilliancy or hard work, but on its obedience to God’s standard expressed in His righteous Law. In fact, God most emphatically states that “righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people” (Proverbs 14:34), thus making holiness and blessings inseparable for any people or any nation.

 

Whereas most people believe in the inherit goodness of man, since the Fall all have sinned, and all men’s hearts are depraved prior to regeneration, making none righteous apart from God’s indwelling Holy Spirit. Furthermore, Christ states in Luke 11:23 that “He who is not with Me is against Me; and he who does not gather with Me, scatters.” Therefore, those who are not Christians are at enmity with Him and with His people. And since civil magistrates serve as God’s sword against evildoers to maintain peace and safety for those who are His, then it stands to reason that we do not want those opposed to His Laws.

 

Whereas many do not believe that God’s Law applies to all men and certainly not to nations because we are no longer under the Law but under grace, the Bible from front to back explicitly states that all men and all nations are governed and judged by God’s Law—the only standard of righteousness. If this were not so, then God would be unjust in His condemnation of those who oppose Him. Consequently, since Romans 1 verifies the fact that all men are culpable before God and that all will be judged according to His standard of righteousness, then it stands to reason that God requires obedience of all men, which indeed He commands in Acts 17:30,31: “…He admonishes all men everywhere to repent, because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness…” Furthermore, if men are not under God’s Law, then why does He command us to disciple all nations, teaching all that He commanded?

 

Rousas John Rushdoony in the foreword to Greg Bahnsen’s Theonomy states: If law be separated from grace, then grace also disappears, for the Bible knows no antinomian grace. The redeeming work of Jesus Christ, and the necessity of His atoning death on the cross, attest to the absoluteness of God’s Law: it could not be set aside. The redemptive work of Christ did not end the function of the law but rather re-established man in obedience to the law. We are redeemed, St. Paul made clear, ‘That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us’ Romans 8:4.’ Theonomy is God’s Law opposed to autonomy, which is man’s law.

 

A thorough study of the Reformation and Puritanism in America reveals that their adherence to Scripture in all areas of society, coupled with their earnest labor toward sanctifying their culture, namely, themselves, their families, their churches, their communities, and their civil magistrates by discipling all men to adhere to all that Christ commanded, not only served as a catalyst for liberty but was in fact that which created the only Christian Republic in the history of the world, resulting in incomparable liberty, prosperity, and consummate felicity. In contrast, the Enlightenment that firmly asserted that both the individual and the state be free from biblical direction or restraint, quite understandably, culminated in the bloodbath of the French Revolution.

 

To secure this distinct Christian heritage, America throughout most of its history held firmly to very stringent immigration laws. An example of this comes from Puritan Economic Experiments by Gary North: The towns of colonial New England were tightly knit Christian commonwealths (with) restrictions on immigration into the local community. They were concerned that newcomers might not meet the religious and moral standards of the present inhabitants (therefore) ‘the court will be careful, that whom they accept are persons orthodox in their judgments.’ The Puritan towns of Boston, Cambridge, Dedham, and probably many others all included the requirement that outsiders be cleared by town officials before they were allowed to buy land locally.

 

Since God warns that “a little leaven [sin] leavens the whole,” allowing opposing religions into this (once) Christian Republic, staunchly founded on explicitly Christian principles, appears most ludicrous to the judicious mind.

 

This brings us to the most disturbing opinion that many Americans hold: that Muslims on the whole are not violent like their extremist counterparts and therefore not a threat to this country. How could anyone believe such foolishness, when he understands that the very god that the Muslims worship commands them to kill all infidels that refuse to worship him?

 

In response to this erroneous conclusion, Dr. George Grant in his book Blood of the Moon makes a most compelling case to the contrary, substantiating the real threat all Muslims pose, with exhaustive biblical and historical evidence. Never in the history of the world have the Muslims been a peaceful people, but consistently murder all infidels, whom they explicitly name in their Qur’an as Christians and Jews, that refuse to worship their God Allah. Again, I encourage all of you to read this excellent book!

 

Frighteningly, 75,000 Muslims poured into St. Louis in the ‘90s when Clinton opened the floodgate for this mass influx of immigrants from Eastern Europe. According to other Muslims, whenever they build a mosque, they claim that city for Allah. Already they have built somewhere between 4-6 mosques in St. Louis. For a look at one of the mosques in St. Louis, go to https://www.facebook.com/MuhammadMosque28.

 

According to a recent survey, there are 1209 mosques in America. There are 7 million Muslims living in America. 43% of all Muslims are African American. 30% of all incarcerated African Americans are Muslims. There are 150 Muslim elected officials. In 1998 Hillary Clinton declared her support for Palestinian statehood. The Muslims donated $50,000 to her campaign for a seat in the Senate. The 2nd largest donation to President Clinton’s campaign was a Muslim. Muslims have given invocations to the Senate, House, and both political party conventions. The number of participants at mosques has increased more than 75% during the past 5 years. In light of the Muslims’ past history, their growing numbers in this country places Christians and our nation at great risk!

http://www.allied-media.com/AM/AM-profile.htm

 

Our government’s alarm over the increase of Muslims in our prisons, and their claim that they intend to carry through with their jihad plans once they leave prison, led to a special report that we personally viewed on PBS last year. To our dismay, we learned that our prisons are increasing by 5,000 inmates nationwide every 90 minutes. Yes, that’s right, every 90 minutes! Even more alarming is the fact that many of these inmates are becoming Muslims while in prison.

 

To further confirm this grave concern, following this broadcast, we read an article from John Stormer’s Understanding the Times in which Rick Mathes with Mission Gate Prison Ministry reported that during his annual prison security training session, he listened to a Muslim cleric give a presentation on the Muslim faith. Afterwards, Rick asked, “‘Please tell me if I’m wrong, but I understand that most Imams and clerics of Islam have declared a holy jihad (Holy War) against the infidels of the world and, that by killing an infidel, which is a command to all Muslims, that they are assured a place in heaven. If that’s the case, can you give me a definition of an infidel?’ There was no disagreement with my statements and, without hesitation, he replied, ‘Non-believers?’ I responded, ‘So let me make sure I have this straight. Followers of Allah have been commanded to kill everyone who is not of your faith so they can have a place in heaven. Is that correct?’ He sheepishly replied, ‘Yes.’”

http://www.missiongateministry.org/

 

An Investor’s Business Daily report states that Obama favors most all immigration and is against English as our official language. Obama states that he “would not require the borders to be secured before illegal immigrants could seek citizenship and would increase the number of legal immigrants”… voted in 2003 for state legislation allowing illegal immigrants to quality for a driver’s license …voted against making English our official language…and said “Understand this: Instead of worrying about whether immigrants can learn English…you need to make sure your children can speak Spanish.”

 

Noah Webster’s opposition to those who were using immigration to advance their subversive doctrines is as pertinent today as it was then. Consider carefully the warning he wrote in his American Minerva magazine: I consider as a matter of infinite consequence the cautious admission of foreigners to the rights of citizenship. Numbers of them who have within the past year arrived and settled in this city come with violent prejudices against arbitrary government, and they seem to make no great distinction between arbitrary government and a government of laws founded on free elections. Many of them are warm democrats; and the Emigration Society here is headed by Democrats of our own—in short the opposers of our government are literally wriggling themselves into all sorts of company to carry their points. One main article of their policy is to attach foreigners to their principles the moment of their landing. If that system of creating a popular interest extraneous from the legislature to influence their proceedings—that system of raising a multitude of isolated private clubs over the nation as its guardian—should spread through the country, we may bid adieu to our Constitution. Our safety is in the country people, who more scattered and more independent, are out of the reach of demagogues.

 

 

 

CASTING A VISION FOR MULTIGENERATIONAL FAMILY BUSINESS

 

During our family’s Valentine’s Celebration we fill our wine glasses with sparkling grape juice to toast God’s love for our family and for each other. I was so impressed to find that this glassmaking company, which began in 1756, is still operated by the same family of 11 generations.

 

altRiedel Glass GmbH-Glassmaking/Kufstein, Austria founded in 1756. Johann Christoph Riedel (1678-1744) journeyed throughout Europe trading glass. His son Johann Carl Riedel (1701-1781), a guilder and glasscutter, operated his own workshop. Grandson Johann Leopold Riedel (1726-1800) founded glass factory in 1756, benefited from the need to rebuild windowpanes after the Seven Year War (1756-1763) between Austrians and Prussians. The company is now known for making wineglasses. George Riedel of the tenth generation is the president. Eleventh-generation member Maximilian Riedel (born 1977) is in charge of the North American market; Laetizia Riedel (born 1974), a lawyer, plans to become the firm’s legal adviser.

 

 

 

NEW HOMESCHOOLERS-Part XV as presented at the Conference Remembering 30 Years (I have actually been presenting the New Homeschoolers workshop for 31 years.)

 

Homeschooling Is No Different from What You Have Been Doing with Your Children from Their Birth

 

There was once a little neighbor girl who fell into our fishpond in water not much deeper than what she had bathed in all her life. Yet she continued to thrash and scream, “I cannot swim; I cannot swim,” until we told her to stand up. Officially beginning what is commonly called homeschooling may perhaps feel like the first time you jumped in water over your head, when in reality the water is no deeper than the water you bathed in all your life, or in homeschooling terms, no different from what you have been doing with your children all their lives. In truth, you have been homeschooling your children since they were born. You just did not think of it in that way. And since statistics show that children learn more in the first four years of their lives than at any other time thereafter, you may relax knowing you have done the hardest part.

 

How can this be, you might wonder? Reflect on all that you have taught your children already. You have trained them to walk, communicate, reason, solve problems, control their tempers, respond courteously, and a thousand other very important skills. When you come to realize that children’s cognitive, linguistic, social, emotional, and physical skills proliferate under their parents’ nurturing, the idea of homeschooling takes on a whole new perspective.

 

Preschool/Kindergarten Curriculum

 

Throughout the years, parents of preschool children will ask me what curriculum they should use for their children. Before I answer their question, I ask them to consider several important points. First of all, studies show that children beginning formal academics at ages 8 or 9 will within a few months catch up with the educational level of the 8- or 9-year-olds who began formal academics at ages 3, 4, and 5 years of age, a reality that became evident to me when I taught first grade in public school. It was then that I realized that children at that age were not ready for structured days of formal instruction.

 

In an article by Raymond and Dorothy Moore entitled “When Education Becomes Abuse: A Different Look at the Mental Health of Children,” a top learning and development authority from Berkeley, California by the name of William Rohwer warns that early formal school is burning out our children. He offers this solution: All the learning necessary for success in high school can be accomplished in only two or three years of formal skill study. Delaying mandatory instruction in the basic skills until the junior high school years could mean academic success for millions of school children that are doomed to failure under the traditional school system.

 

This same article aptly included the Smithsonian Report on Genius. It was a three-part recipe for high achievement. The foremost component in this formula for genius was that children spend the majority of their time with warm, responsive parents and other adults. The second element confirmed the first in that children spend very little time with peers. And finally, that they spend a great deal of free exploration under parental guidance. This, in fact, has always been the course for genius, and behavioral health, as well. Even for those early American intellectual giants who attended institutions outside the home setting, the time was limited to 3 or 4 years in later life compared to 13 years today.

 

Author, former schoolteacher of nearly 30 years, and past FCM speaker, John Taylor Gatto told our homeschooling families that reading, writing, and arithmetic take only 100 hours to transmit. And this revelation came from a teacher that received New York City Teacher of the Year award in 1989, 1990, and 1991, and New York State Teacher of the Year in 1991. Best known for his underground classic Dumbing Us Down, John has authored several books criticizing the ideology, history, and fatal consequences of modern education.

 

In light of history, and all the statistics that confirm the supreme advantage of parental discipleship over early formal schooling, I do not recommend a structured curriculum for five year olds, but instead offer guidelines and ideas in my Preschool/Kindergarten article that will provide parents with all the skills needed before introducing their children to formal academics.

 

Since children learn best through play and creative activity, instead of forcing your children to conform their minds and bodies to a regulated curriculum that requires textbooks and workbooks, fill their lives with wonderful days of learning through playing with you.

 

Preschool/Kindergarten Curriculum will be placed online sometime in the near future.

 

 

 

DELIGHTFUL SURPRISES

 

King’s Arthur’s Baking Supplies

 

altFor the past 15 years, Sonia and I have been enjoying King Arthur Flour and their baking supplies. Since Valentine’s Day is the perfect day to shower your family with all things delicious and lovingly prepared, King Arthur’s gifts make the perfect Valentine presents for your daughters.

 

Some of their great baking supplies include appliances, bread machines, knives, bowls, pans, scales, rolling pins, digital thermometers, cake stands, butter dishes, molds, bake and give packages and tags, cookie supplies and decorations, unusual spices, cookbooks, food gifts (chocolates, maple syrup, baking pans and mixes, scones and muffins mixes, caramels, preserves, curds) and gingerbread house kit. They even carry a dog bone kit and cutter set.

 

My most treasured gift to Sonia from King Arthur was their fresh sourdough starter that has been lovingly nurtured since the 1700s. It is my desire and prayer that this starter will continue to be lovingly nurtured for a thousand generations of my family. I am thrilled to think that my great, great, great…grandchildren will be making delicious breads, pancakes, waffles and biscuits from sourdough that we kept alive and well for their precious families.

http://www.kingarthurflour.com/

 

 

 

IN THE LIBRARY

 

Remembering 30 Years-This is one of my book reviews from the past 30 years.

 

altThe Character of an Upright Man: A Plea for Personal Integrity by Richard Steele (1629-1692) is available from Amazon.com in hardcover or Kindle edition. This is an excellent book and a must for every family’s library! I have read it now for the second time; gleaning even more from it than the first time I read it. And now we are having the children read a chapter each day as part of their quiet study time with the Lord.

 

Richard Steele was a Puritan pastor. He graduated from St. John’s College in Cambridge and then received his M.A. at Oxford. He was considered a devoted husband, a loving father, a diligent scholar, an excellent preacher, and a compassionate shepherd. Besides the book in review, he also authored A Remedy for Wandering Thoughts in the Worship of God and The Religious Tradesman. Hopefully, his discourse Concerning Old Age will also be published soon. Also of interest to us was that he ordained Philip Henry in 1657 and then 30 years later ordained his son Matthew Henry who became the famous Bible commentator—and in our minds the very best Bible commentator. The ordination of Matthew Henry actually took place in Richard Steele’s own home.

 

Since this is such a great book, I decided to give you a little taste of the treasure it contains. But before I do, let me reprint the book’s introduction from the back jacket: There are few things harder to find in our day than personal integrity. Honor, nobility, dignity, and integrity seem more and more to be things from a bygone era. We find it harder and harder to trust a man’s word anymore. It would not be difficult to paraphrase Solomon’s proverb into this: ‘An honest man, who can find?’ The Puritan Richard Steele deals with that problem in this never-before reprinted book. He addresses believers and unbelievers alike in this work. The faithful Christian will find encouragement, strength, and a road map to godliness; the backsliding believer will be able to see where to set his or her mark, and the danger of delaying repentance; and finally, the unbeliever will notice the goodness, mercy, and compassion of the Christian life, and may, by divine grace, be stirred to jealousy, to seek those things which are above.

 

With pen in hand, I took notes as I went through the book for the second time. These are the notes I made in reflection to the wisdom Mr. Steele imparted: An upright man is resigned to God with a singleness of heart to honor and serve Him. He is wholehearted, sound, true, sincere, and obedient while walking in the integrity of his heart, for his heart and mind are conformed to the things of God. Truly, he is a man after God’s own heart, which seeks God’s praise and not that of man’s.

 

A hypocrite, on the other hand, chooses only those things he wants from the Lord and then only when those things serve him best. He never chooses Him when his own happiness, comfort, or his reputation in the eyes of other men are at stake. A hypocrite serves God on his own terms because of the duplicity of his heart for the many gods whom he worships—money, friends, and all the pleasures of this world.

 

An upright man—a true believer, constantly studies God’s Word and agrees with the whole and entirety of scripture because it is God’s Word. Grace is his ambition, so he labors hard for greater faith, greater love, and greater godliness. With bended knee and broken heart, he watches over his heart constantly repenting of unfaithfulness, pride, dullness, wandering thoughts during worship, envy and lust. These are the things that keep him up at night and on his knees while others slumber. He hates all sin and loves his duty. Psalm 119:128,129,131: “Therefore I esteem right all Your precepts concerning everything, I hate every false way. Your testimonies are wonderful; therefore my soul observes them. I opened my mouth wide and panted, for I longed for Your commandments.”

 

The hypocrite cares less about these things because they are issues of the heart, which no one else really sees. He only worries about the things that will cause his friends to think more poorly of him like cussing or drunkenness, for the hypocrite only worries about how he looks in the eyes of men. In essence, he would never steal from his neighbor, but steals from God’s honor all the time. Good deeds may bring accolades from others, but a rotten heart is most certainly condemned by God.

 

Quoted from Richard Steele: An upright heart is pure without mixture. It is not absolutely pure, for that happy condition is reserved for heaven; but it is compared with the pollution and base mixture that constitutes a hypocrite. Though his hand cannot do all that God bids, yet his heart is sincere in all he does. His soul is bent for perfect purity, and so he has his name from that. Matthew 5:8 ‘Blessed are the pure in heart.’ In his words he sometimes fails, and also in his thoughts and deeds; but open his heart and there is love, a desire, a design and an endeavor after real and absolute purity. He is not legally pure, that is, free from all sin, but he is evangelically pure, free from the reign of all sin, especially of hypocrisy, which is so flatly contrary to the covenant of grace. And in this sense the upright man is the Scripture Puritan, and so is further from hypocrisy than any other man. He is really glad that God is the Searcher of hearts, for then he knows that he will find His name and nature in his own.

 

And yet the most upright man in the world has some hypocrisy in him. Proverbs 20:9 ‘Who can say, I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin?’ but he detects, resists, and hates this hypocrisy; and so it cannot dominate him as a hypocrite in this world, nor damn him as one in another. His ends are generally purely for the glory of God; his frame of heart and thoughts are pure, and generally better than his outside; the farther you trace him, the better he is. He is pure from dishonesty in his dealing, purer yet in his family from all appearance of evil, purer still in his closet, and most pure in his heart. Though there is sin there, yet there is also there an antipathy against it, so that it does not mingle with it.

 

The upright man has but one happiness, and that is the enjoyment of God; he has but one rule, and that is His holy will; he has but one work, and that is to please his Maker. Thereupon he is entire and certain in his choices, in his desires, in his ways and contrivances. And though there may be some demurs in his prosecution of his main business, yet there is no hesitancy and wavering between two objects; for he is entirely fixed and resolved therein, and so may be said to be ‘perfect and entire, wanting nothing.’

 

There is in every hypocrite some one fort or stronghold that has never yielded to the sovereignty and empire of God’s will. Some lust fortifies itself in the will; but where integrity enters, it brings every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. ‘Lord,’ he says, ‘I am wholly Thine; do what Thou wilt with me; say what Thou wilt to me; write what Thou wilt upon me.’ ‘Other lords beside thee have had dominion over us: but by thee only will we make mention of thy name’ (Isaiah 26:13). Here is the upright man.

 

A hypocrite makes a cloak of religion which he puts on and off as it serves his purposes; the upright man wears it as his everyday clothes and does not put it off till…he dies.” Whereas a hypocrite is ruled by the culture, companions, and the moment, the upright man is ruled by God’s Word, so therefore he constantly and steadfastly walks with God and lives like Him. He chooses to confront and rebuke rather than to flatter and comfort others in their sins, concerned not that he loses many by the truth that he could have kept with flattery, because he desires to honor God rather than himself. Job 32:21,22 “Let me now be partial to no one, nor flatter any man. For I do not know how to flatter, else my Maker would soon take me away.” Proverbs 26:23 “Like an earthen vessel overlaid with silver dross are burning lips and a wicked heart.” Mark these words and burn them deep in your hearts: Those who want to be loved and approved by all are far from God!!!

 

The hypocrite “can set his sail to every wind and please everybody to profit or preserve himself…The upright man is deliberate in choosing and settling his principles, but a thousand words shall not alter him without clear evidence in his conscience. He is not a twining willow, but a sturdy oak; and whether the point he differs in is small or great, if it is a matter of conscience… yet all the rhetoric or rigor on earth will not remove an upright man from his course till God makes the business clear to his conscience.

 

The hypocrite’s desire is to please and promote self; the upright man’s desire is to please and promote God. For his eyes are on the mark, not on those around him. So “without squinting at events, or how it will please, or whom it will lose; he is resolved to live and die in his duty.” Proverbs 4:25 Let your eyes look directly ahead and let your gaze be fixed straight in front of you.”

 

Although the hypocrite may appear to some to be good, the upright man knows that only God is good. A hypocrite’s religion is only skin deep, while the Holy Spirit reigns in the upright man’s heart because without regeneration no one can be truly holy and upright. For without the cleansing of Christ’s blood, there can be no remission of sins. “Civility and sanctity are two separate things.” 2 Corinthians 1:12 “For our proud confidence is this: the testimony of our conscience, that in holiness and godly sincerity, not in fleshly wisdom but in the grace of God, we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially toward you.”

 

God defends and upholds the upright man. 2 Samuel 22:31 “As for God, His way is blameless; the word of the LORD is tested; He is a shield to all who take refuge in Him.” Ephesians 6:24 “Grace be with all those who love our Lord Jesus Christ with incorruptible love.” Psalm 37:37 “Mark the blameless man, and behold the upright; for the man of peace will have a posterity.”

 

God is a very present help to the upright in trouble and comforts them with a peace that surpasses all understanding. Jeremiah 32:40 “I will make an everlasting covenant with them that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; and I will put the fear of Me in their hearts so that they will not turn away from Me.” Proverbs 28:10 “He who leads the upright astray in an evil way will himself fall into his own pit, but the blameless will inherit good.” Psalm 84:11 “For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD gives grace and glory; no good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly.” Proverbs 21:21 “He who pursues righteousness and loyalty finds life, righteousness and honor.”

 

Psalm 112 “Praise the LORD! How blessed is the man who fears the LORD, who greatly delights in His commandments. His descendants will be mighty on earth; the generation of the upright will be blessed. Wealth and riches are in his house, and his righteousness endures forever. Light arises in the darkness for the upright…For he will never be shaken; the righteous will be remembered forever. He will not fear evil tidings; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the LORD. His heart is upheld, he will not fear, until he looks with satisfaction on his adversaries…His horn will be exalted in honor. The wicked will see it and be vexed, he will gnash his teeth and melt away; the desire of the wicked will perish.”

 

Proverbs 15:8,9 “The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD, but the prayer of the upright is His delight. The way of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD, but He loves one who pursues righteousness.” Psalm 7:8-12 “The LORD judges the peoples; vindicate me, O LORD, according to my righteousness and my integrity that is in me. O let the evil of the wicked come to an end, but establish the righteous; for the righteous God tries the hearts and minds. My shield is with God, who saves the upright in heart. God is a righteous judge, and a God who has indignation every day. If a man does not repent, He will sharpen His sword; He has bent His bow and made it ready.”

 

Isaiah 33:14-16 “Sinners in Zion are terrified; trembling has seized the godless. ‘Who among us can live with the consuming fire? Who among us can live with continual burning?’ He who walks righteously and speaks with sincerity, he who rejects unjust gain and shakes his hands so that they hold no bribe…he will dwell on the heights, his refuge will be the impregnable rock; his bread will be given him, his water will be sure.”

 

Consider carefully how close Saul, Judas, and the Virgins came to the target but missed the mark. Matthew 25:1-13 “Then the kingdom of heaven will be comparable to ten virgins, who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish…For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them…But at midnight there was a shout, ‘Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’ Then all those virgins rose and trimmed their lamps. The foolish said to the prudent, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ But the prudent answered, ‘No, there will not be enough for us and you too; go instead to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.’ And while they were going away to make the purchase, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding feast; and the door was shut. Later the other virgins also came, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open up for us.’ But he answered, ‘Truly I say to you, I do not know you.’ Be on the alert then, for you do not know the day nor the hour.”

 

Oh, what a terrible fate to think oneself a Christian only to be damned at the gates of heaven! Come let us sift ourselves to determine where our heart really lies. Psalm 139:23,24 “Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me and know my anxious thoughts; and see if there be any hurtful way in me, and lead me in the everlasting way.”

 

Buy the book! Everyone needs to read it. This is one of those books that we will purchase for each of our children.

 

 

 

 

FAMILY OUTINGS

 

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Nathaniel Reid Bakery in Kirkwood Our family first became acquainted with Nathaniel Reid’s pastries at the Ritz-Carlton a couple of years ago when the children surprised me with their Mother’s Day Brunch. Awestruck by his amazing artistry, we stood silent for several minutes as we all stared at his magnificent works of art. Never had we seen such stunning baked creations or tasted such lovely morsels second only to manna from heaven. Most recently we were delighted to discover that Nathaniel and his wife had opened their own shop at 11243 Manchester Road, Kirkwood, MO 63122. One of our stops on Jedidiah’s birthday included this bakery for some sweet treats. Heartily greeting us as we walked in the door was none other than the owner and chef himself who had to be one of the most personable, kind, and polite young men we have ever met. While admiring and selecting his gorgeous pastries, we talked to him about his life and business. As we talked, customer after customer came in to say hi and purchase goodies from him. He knew them all by name as they knew him. That said a lot about his reputation for wonderful creations. The article that I have linked below says it best—all sweet things about one of the top ten pastry chefs in America.

https://www.stlmag.com/dining/sneak-peek-nathaniel-reid-bakery-opens-in-kirkwood/

http://www.chefnathanielreid.com/

 

 

 

 

SUMMERS ON THE FARM Everything we do is being recorded for our posterity to know and understand the loving sacrifices we made to ensure their prosperity!

 

-Although our livestock have access to springs and creeks, when the boys are rotating them through our pastures over the summer, we water everyone from water tanks that we fill with our spring water. A friend just gave us a water tank for our cows. These tanks are so very helpful, and now that we have two, we won’t need to fill up twice a day.

 -Jedidiah and I went shopping for the dairy. We purchased a soft pliable clothesbasket for the dirty udder cloths, a sturdy clothesbasket for the cloths coming out of the dairy barn’s dryer, two containers with handles (one for the dairy and one for the main barn) for carrying any medical supplies we need when treating cattle, a medium sized lidded container for medical supplies, two large lidded containers for clean udder cloths, magnetic pads of paper for notes, a notebook for keeping time of tasks, scrub brush for washing hands, and liquid hand soap.

-I spent time at a friend’s house today, as she filled in all the paperwork for registering our miniature Jersey bull. We should have papers on him shortly, which will double his worth compared to a standard size bull.

-Today I decided to add flowers to the list of products we hope to sell. I spent hours searching for varieties that are both gorgeous and good for cutting for bouquets. Then I searched for nurseries that sell the seeds, tubers, and rosebushes. Since the garden has not produced as much as we anticipated due to grazing deer, munching groundhogs, and marauding cattle, we will start off small to see if we can keep more than we lose.

-I went over to the dairy barn and organized all the supplies in our closet. Josiah helped me finish washing the ceiling, walls, and windows of the milking parlor. Then Jedidiah and I washed our rolling cart and shelving unit. After we thought we were done, the boys had to take the toilet apart to fish out the scrub brush I left in the bucket of soapy water that went woops down the drain. I felt terrible! They said it was no big deal. Picked up the toilet, fished it out, and cleaned up the mess in no time.

-I have been sending out information and answering questions on our products for those families that have shown an interest.

-Jedidiah picked up long floor runners for the entrances into our dairy’s kitchen.

-Sold our first jars of milk from our dairy barn today. After a year of building, I am very thankful that we are finally in business.

-Jedidiah tried to bottle feed Buttercup’s calf. The calf will not drink from the bottle. We will try again.

-While Sonia has been ordering flower seeds/tubers/bushes for our new venture, I have been searching and recording information on seeding, potting, and cultivating flowers for customers.

-Jon and Jedidiah made our first milk delivery. Thankfully we have an icemaker to produce all the ice it takes to pack the milk.

-Had friends over today so the younger boys could learn how to construct a barn addition for their sister’s horse.

-Met with the contractor to discuss the expenses involved in converting the farmhouse into a butchering facility. It looks like we will save a considerable amount of money, so the boys should begin the remodel soon.

-Jedidiah cut and formed a metal roof for our UTV so that we stay dry when it is raining.

-Brought Buttercup and calf in to make certain the calf is getting enough milk and to give Buttercup alfalfa hay so she can continue to make milk. The cancer is definitely depleting Mama’s energy. Hope she makes it a few more months.

-Jon picked up another 100 bales of alfalfa/orchard grass for the dairy cows and sheep and more electric fencing for our pigs.

-In preparation for tapping some of our maple trees, I purchased all the water jugs the grocery store had. Then I walked along our creek in the meadow and watched while the boys tapped 39 trees. Jon drilled holes into the lid of the water jugs. Jedidiah drilled holes into the trees and cut the rubber tubing. Josiah went behind him and pushed the rubber tubing onto each spile, inserted the tubing into the jug’s lid, and tied the jug onto the spile. I just ran back and forth for supplies and held jugs and string. The sap was already flowing as we worked.

-Jon and I picked up a pile of firewood that Josiah had cut in the meadow, took it home and stacked it.

-The boys and I looked at one of the small original buildings on the farm to see if we could use it for a sugar shack. We decided not to attempt reconstructing it for that purpose at least for this year.

-Jon and Jedidiah just picked up a stock trailer and a hay elevator we purchased from a friend. She kindly threw in her fuel tank so we will have diesel fuel available all the time.

-The vet just checked our cows to make certain they are pregnant. Thankfully, they are. He then checked poor Buttercup who is drooling now because of nerve damage. We are so saddened by her degeneration.

- Last year the syrup ended up having a smoky flavor so Jedidiah made a stainless steel lid to cover our cooker.

-The boys boiled down our first 40 gallons of sap.

-Jedidiah and I went out to collect more sap, so the boys began cooking down another 40 gallons.

-I began cleaning up limbs and branches around the low water bridge in hopes of reducing the coverage for the rattlesnakes that we typically find there. Sonia and I had worked on that last winter with Sonia running the bobcat. Since I do not operate that machinery, I need to wait for someone to help me finish that job. After I was done with what I could do there, I began cleaning up the meadow.

-A friend just gave us a fuel tank for our farm. It is rusty, but when cleaned up, it will be a great help to us for all our equipment.

-Ordered more heirloom apples: Cox’s Orange Pippin, King David, Grimes Golden, White Winter Pearmain, Ashmead’s Kernel, Calville Blanc, Spitzenburg, Roxbury Russet, Arkansas Black, and Wickson Crabapple. Several of these are for making apple cider.

-We are continuing to boil down sap for maple syrup.

 

 

 

THE JOY OF COUNTRY LIVING

 

I Luvs Yuh Like a Pig Luvs de Mud

 

I find it quite remarkable how certain aromas, even those that are rather disagreeable, have the capability of triggering powerfully emotional memories. For example, whenever I smell a gardenia, my mind is flooded with lovely memories of my mother wearing these exquisite scented corsages from my father. Likewise, picking up something that smells like my mother and father’s home always elicits sweet comments from one of my children.

 

On the other hand, even less desirable odors, like sweaty bodies, call to mind wonderfully pleasant recollections of my children’s smudged faces beaded with perspiration from playing under the summer’s hot sun. The same is true when I pass someone who reeks of too much perfume. Instead of turning up my nose, I am immediately transported to the back seat of my father’s shiny Hudson. Eagerly watching for my Aunt Francis, I see her come into view on my father’s arm, all dolled up in high heels, jewels, and a fox fur that had the ability of leaving me spellbound until the trance was suddenly broken by the heady perfume that smacked me in the face long before the soft fascinating fur brushed my tender cheek. Engulfed, once again, by her portly figure. I can feel her hearty hug, and just as if it were yesterday, I hear her jovial greeting of “Candy, you’re just as cute as a bug’s ear.”

 

At the time, I loved her affection and thought highly of her praise. After all, she was the only one who expressed her affection for me in quite that way. She was also the only one who allowed me to slide across her highly polished floors in my stocking feet, wind up the little bird that sang in her golden cage, and stroke that amazing fox fur of hers. But as I got older and discovered that bugs don’t really have ears, I began to wonder what she truly meant by that remark.

 

As I searched for the meaning of “as cute as a bug’s ear,” I found that the phrase related to cute as a button, cute as a cupcake, and cute as a kitten. I love old buttons and actually keep a large tin of them, but no matter how beautiful, I never considered them cute. I don’t even think cupcakes are cute—and I love those, too. Pretty, appetizing, and delicious, yes, but hardly cute. Kittens, on the other hand, are cute! But what did this have to do with cute as a bug’s ear?

 

Apparently, the phrase began as “acute as a bug’s ear” because they could identify miniscule and high-pitched sounds. Cute was as synonym for acute in the 1700’s in England…as sharp, quick-witted, shrewd. An early example of ‘cute as a bug’s ear’ is found in a story in the South Carolina newspaper the Charleston Sunday News, June 1891: Imogene McGinty is as cute as a bug’s ear. From around that time onwards, in the USA, the ‘pretty; charming’ meaning of cute began to supersede the previous ‘acute’ meaning.

http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/as-cute-as-a-bugs-ear.html

 

I was glad to know that! Interested in the origins of words and phrases, this is just one of many that I have looked up over the years. Take for instance a relatively simple phrase: By and large. Where exactly did that come from, I wondered. Surprisingly, it is a nautical term that dates back to the 16th century. Mariners used “by” to describe ships sailing into the wind while “large” referred to vessels that had the wind at their backs. Seafarers, then, used “by and large” to describe cruising the seas in every direction according to the wind. Today, it has come to mean “all things considered” or “for the most part.”

 

Have you wondered what people meant when they said that they felt “fair to middling”? Referring to grading farmers’ cotton at the market in the South during the 1800s and 1900s, “fair and middling” ratings meant that the cotton was poor in quality. Therefore, someone who uses those terms to describe their health means that they are feeling rather poorly. I was certainly glad to know that because I always thought that they meant that they were fine. Now I express compassion to the “fair to middling” crowd and tell them how sorry I am that they are feeling poorly.

 

How often did you tell your kiddos “goodnight, sleep tight,” when in fact you really did not know what it meant? Before our present day’s sturdy box springs, mattresses rested on ropes tied to a bed frame. For a comfortable night’s rest, the ropes needed tightening, thus “goodnight, sleep tight.”

 

And what does “raining cats and dogs” mean? Upon further investigation, cats and dogs would snuggle in their owners’ thatched roofs at night to keep warm. During downpours, the animals often slipped off the roof in the rain. Wow, how sad is that! Certainly not a phrase that you will hear me using in the future!

 

Other phrases over the course of time are the result of observation during life’s experiences. That in fact is what has happened since I moved to a farm. “Making hay while the sun shines” became reality when we began mowing, raking, baling, and hauling hay. To avoid ruined hay, I realized how essential the sun is to curing and keeping it dry. And as I witnessed our bees busily buzzing from flower to flower, I fully understood the declaration “as busy as a bee.”

 

Owning pigs has also brought to mind a whole new level of understanding to expressions like “hog wild,” “hogging all the food,” “wallowing in sin,” and “luvs yuh like a pig luvs de mud.” Hogs do indeed go wild over food, and if it must be shared with more than one pig, a lot of loud snorting and shoving takes place at the feed trough. And let me tell you, three to six hundred pounds of pure lard in shovel mode is definitely something to behold.

 

Most people think that they understand what it means to wallow in sin, but that statement takes on a whole new level of understanding when you actually witness a pig rolling about in the mud, which brings me to the point of this story.

 

Of all of the prior expressions, I never really thought much about the saying, “I luvs yuh like a pig luvs de mud” because it was not really something that I would ever say to someone. But knowing pigs as I do now, I can tell you most emphatically that telling someone that you love them to the moon and back has nothing on luvs yuh like a pig luvs de mud.

 

Pigs (which describes any of the animals in the genus Sus, within the Suidae family of even-toed ungulates) or more simply put—all manner of swine, of all ages, love mud. I am not talking about love as we generally perceive it. I love my flannel sheets to the point of rubbing my legs all over the soft fibers every time I slip into bed—something akin to a cat rubbing its owner’s shins—but this does not even come close to pigs’ love of mud. We are not talking about “like, fondness, or appreciation,” but an ardent adoration that borders on idolatry, second only to their robust appetite for food.

 

With abandon, they fling themselves full length into a mud hole, and with the sheer enthusiasm only pigs exhibit, flop and then wiggle and jiggle until they find just the right amount of cush (not like the son of Ham or the ancient region of northeast Africa, but short for cushy) like in real comfort. Squealing with delight, they get up and flop down on the other side and nestle into the oozing muck until they feel quite satisfied. And this, I might add, is all done with smiles on their faces.

 

So just like there is more to “as cute as a bug’s ear,” there is much, much more than meets the ear with this one. Therefore, if someone tells you that they “luvs yuh like a pig luvs de mud,” resist feelings of offense, and instead, hug them tightly as you count your blessings because they truly luvs yuh!

 

Ahh, country living is the life for me!

 

 

 

THE DISMANTLING OF AMERICA Every hour our government spends 200 million dollars it does not have!

 

Pie-in-the-Sky “Convention of States” Should Be Rejected

Please vote NO on all applications for an Article V Convention.

 

There are enemies, foreign and domestic, to our United States Constitution. Some want to make our Constitution more globalist-friendly, some want to dilute the Second Amendment, and some want to eliminate the Electoral College. Some simply want to become important by rewriting our Constitution. 

 

Liberal Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg announced on February 6th that she would like to change the Electoral College requirement in the Constitution. Without that, no non-incumbent Republican candidate would have won the presidency in the last quarter century. Without the Electoral College, money alone would dictate the outcome in presidential elections.

 

Billionaires have poured many millions into pushing a project deceptively named the “Convention of States,” which seeks an Article V convention that could rewrite our entire U.S. Constitution. These hidden donors may be connected with George Soros or with the Koch brothers, who are not socially conservative. Regardless of who the financial backers are, they secretly think they will rewrite our Constitution, and they are spending millions to do so.

 

No thanks. Yet some Republicans have fallen for this scheme when they should be focusing on good legislation for this State, rather than on this dangerous pie-in-the-sky plot to rewrite the Constitution. There is no way to limit an Article V convention, and it could insert every liberal entitlement into it.

 

Last July in Cleveland, the Republican national platform committee resoundingly rejected an attempt to include a call for an Article V convention into the platform. Justice Antonin Scalia, in his final year before he passed away, explained at a public event in May 2015 that it was a “horrible idea” to hold an Article V convention to change the Constitution. Other conservative leaders throughout history, from Phyllis Schlafly to James Madison, have emphatically rejected this bad idea.

 

Yet this is being considered in your state legislature, seeking to launch a new constitutional convention that would be dominated by the liberal media, by Democrats, and by RINOs (Republicans in Name Only). The big money behind this project is probably pro-immigration and anti-American sovereignty, and a new constitution could end border security. Fortunately, only eight states have enacted the Convention of States out of the 34 required to force a constitutional convention.

 

The Constitution is not the problem, and an Article V convention to change it cannot be limited as part of an application for one. The text of the Constitution expressly states that only Congress may “call” a constitutional convention, and it would not be a “convention of states” but rather would be convened (called) under the direction of power-brokers in Washington, D.C.

 

The original Constitutional Convention had three essential conditions that do not exist today: (i) secrecy from the media, (ii) participants who fought in the American Revolution against tyranny, and (iii) George Washington presiding. Today, instead of men like Benjamin Franklin who wrote our Constitution, we would have liberals like Barney Frank rewriting our Constitution.

 

We should reject the tactics of the Left that are being used to try to pass a “Convention of States,” using secret donors and hidden agendas. We should not allow the “bait-and-switch” tactics of pretending that an Article V convention would be something better than our Congress. It would not be better and could be far worse.

 

The first thing liberals would do in an Article V convention is attempt to repeal the Second Amendment, and also insert a right to taxpayer-funded abortion into the Constitution.

 

Big liberal states like California and New York would have greater power at an Article V convention than most conservative states would because the Supreme Court has required the “one man, one vote” rule since 1964. In calling a convention, the House of Representatives would also require voting based on population.

 

Supporters of the “Convention of States” falsely claim that States would not ratify bad amendments. But state legislatures did ratify the liberal 17th Amendment, often unanimously, even though that took power away from them to elect U.S. Senators. Media pressure to ratify amendments becomes unstoppable.

 

If the problem is that politicians do not obey the current Constitution, then writing a new one is no solution to that problem. Politicians who ignore the current Constitution would ignore a new one.

 

There are important, good laws to consider and pass in the remaining days of this legislative session. Let’s focus on them, rather than falsely pretending that the Constitution is somehow the problem. Thank you.

–Andy Schlafly. J.D.

Phyllis Schlafly Eagles

 

 

 

Thanks to Diane Drinkard for sending this excellent explanation of why we absolutely do not want a Constitutional Article V Convention: The Article V convention was not to reign in out of control government but for the amendment of errors in the Constitution (Federalist 43). Are errors causing the problem today? No! Ignoring the Constitution is the problem. History shows that a Convention cannot be restrained.

 

Change It or Obey It? Why the Constitution is the Solution

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tB1QNdDomI8

 

 

 

Eagle Forum Lobbyist Janet Engelbach shares: Hooray for victory in Virginia! All five of the Con Con bills, including multiple COS bills, failed to pass in Virginia. Special thanks to Delegate Bob Marshall, Sue Long, and others there for stopping these bad bills. Virginia, the home state of Michael Farris and location of the silly simulated conventions by the COS promoters, has been a high-priority target for passage by the other side. This is an enormous win for us.

 

 

 

How Obama is Scheming to Sabotage Trump’s Presidency by Paul Sperry

 

Obama has an army of agitators — numbering more than 30,000 — who will fight his Republican successor at every turn of his historic presidency. And Obama will command them from a bunker less than two miles from the White House. In what’s shaping up to be a highly unusual post-presidency, Obama IS working behind the scenes to set up what will effectively be a shadow government to not only protect his threatened legacy, but to sabotage the incoming administration and its popular “America First” agenda.

 

He’s doing it through a network of leftist nonprofits led by Organizing for Action. Normally you’d expect an organization set up to support a politician and his agenda to close up shop after that candidate leaves office, but not Obama’s OFA. Rather, it’s gearing up for battle, with a growing war chest and more than 250 offices across the country.

 

Since Donald Trump’s election, this little-known but well-funded protesting arm has beefed up staff and ramped up recruitment of young liberal activists, declaring on its website, “We’re not backing down.” Determined to salvage Obama’s legacy, it’s drawing battle lines on immigration, ObamaCare, race relations and climate change.

 

Obama demanded they “move forward to protect what we’ve accomplished.” “Now is the time for some organizing,” he said. OFA activists helped organize anti-Trump marches across US cities, some of which turned into riots. After Trump issued a temporary ban on immigration from seven terror-prone Muslim nations, the demonstrators jammed airports, chanting: “No ban, no wall, sanctuary for all!”

 

Run by old Obama aides and campaign workers, federal tax records show “nonpartisan” OFA marshals 32,525 volunteers nationwide. Registered as a 501(c)(4), it doesn’t have to disclose its donors, but they’ve been generous. OFA has raised more than $40 million in contributions and grants since evolving from Obama’s campaign organization Obama for America in 2013.

 

OFA, in IRS filings, says it trains young activists to develop “organizing skills.” Armed with Obama’s 2012 campaign database, OFA plans to get out the vote for Democratic candidates it’s grooming to win back Congress and erect a wall of resistance to Trump at the other end of Pennsylvania Avenue.

 

It will be aided in that effort by the Obama Foundation, run by Obama’s former political director, and the National Democratic Redistricting Committee, launched last month by Obama pal Eric Holder to end what he and Obama call GOP “gerrymandering” of congressional districts.

 

Obama will be overseeing it all from a shadow White House located within two miles of Trump. It features a mansion, which he’s fortifying with construction of a tall brick perimeter, and a nearby taxpayer-funded office with his own chief of staff and press secretary. Michelle Obama will also open an office there, along with the Obama Foundation.

 

Critical to the fight is rebuilding the ravaged Democrat Party. Obama hopes to install his former civil-rights chief Tom Perez at the helm of the Democratic National Committee.

 

Perez is running for the vacant DNC chairmanship, vowing “It’s time to organize and fight . . . We must stand up to protect President Obama’s accomplishments;” while also promising, “We’re going to build the strongest grass-roots organizing force this country has ever seen.”

 

The 55-year-old Obama is not content to go quietly into the night like other ex-presidents. “You’re going to see me early next year,” he said after the election, “and we’re going to be in a position where we can start cooking up all kinds of great stuff.”

http://nypost.com/2017/02/11/how-obama-is-scheming-to-sabotage-trumps-presidency/

 

 

 

Judge Napolitano: The Obama Administration Takes a Parting Shot at Personal Freedom https://www.yahoo.com/news/m/72156575-2bbf-30db-8e82-3ac36921af7e/ss_judge-napolitano%3A-the-obama.html

 

 

 

Thomas Sowell Commentary: History Shows the Folly of Disarming Lawful People http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/editorials/2016/12/30/history-shows-the-folly-of-disarming-lawful-people.html

 

 

Neil Gorsuch Nomination Update from Andy Schlafly, Esq.The Federalist Society strategy for choosing a young, stealth nominee, another David Souter, is not working. Gallup polling shows that Gorsuch has the weakest support of any nominee in decades, despite benefiting from the massive public relations efforts.

 

Grassroots pro-lifers do not support Gorsuch, and neither does the other side. Many people dislike Gorsuch’s lack of transparency about his views and his far-Left church. Trump was misled to nominate someone who is not pro-life, and that has needlessly hurt Trump politically. Hopefully Trump will get a second chance for filling Justice Scalia’s vacancy with a real pro-life pick.

 

No nominee has ever been blocked by the Senate for having a pro-life record, and none ever will be. It’s the wrong strategy to try to confirm a young candidate who is silent (and worse) on the abortion issue, as Gorsuch has been. Key Democratic senators from conservative states are more likely to vote for a nominee who is up-front about his views than one who tries to conceal them. 

 

Despite this, the donor-driven Federalist Society pursues its stealth strategy. The confirmation hearings will be filled with silly answers like “I can’t say,” “It would be improper for me to comment,” and “I see good arguments on both sides of the issue.” Opposition will grow as the charade plays out. Notice how Gorsuch will praise “stare decisis” to signal to liberals that he won’t overturn Roe v. Wade.

 

With so little support for Gorsuch, some GOP senators may understandably be reluctant to change the rules just for him. Democrats seem to have enough votes to sustain a filibuster.

 

The plummeting internet traffic at the National Review, through which Ed Whelan has been cheerleading for months for a nominee who lacks a pro-life record, illustrates that they are on the wrong path:

 

That is not a road-map for pro-life success.

 

 

RESTORING AMERICA

 

Trump Signs Executive Order to Withdraw from 12-Nation Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Deal

https://www.yahoo.com/news/trump-signs-order-withdrawing-u-trans-pacific-trade-165735372--sector.html

 

 

 

PRAISE REPORT

 

Our family is blessed to have Jason Smith as our Congressman. If you want to be encouraged that there are still statesmen, visit our Congressman Jason Smith’s website at https://jasonsmith.house.gov/.  He is diligently working hard to defend our liberties in every area of life. Please pray for Congressman Smith’s health and safety.

 

Here is this week’s report:

 

Dear Friend,

 

If you have never heard of the ‘Stream Protection Rule’, you aren’t alone. In fact, before the Obama Administration decided to name that one of their final midnight rules last year, I had never heard the term. But its impact would have been disastrous - 400 new regulations from that one rule alone and a projected economic impact of 78,000 jobs lost.

 

With a President now in office willing to put his signature behind rule and regulatory repeals passed by the U.S. House & Senate, we have begun to take aggressive action to repeal some of the most costly, harmful and unconstitutional rules and regulations authored by the Obama White House. In bipartisan fashion last week, the House formally repealed that so called ‘Stream Protection Rule’ and a term that none of us ever became familiar with will fortunately stay that way.

 

In the midnight hours of President Obama’s term, they finalized a rule that effectively barred some Americans who receive disability benefits from owning a firearm - drastically impeding the Second Amendment rights of thousands. Just because somebody has a disability does not mean they are a threat to society. It is exactly this type of lame duck action, this type of Washington bureaucrats know best mentality which voters overwhelmingly rejected this past November. Again, the U.S. House acted last week with my full support to repeal this unconstitutional new bureaucratic rule and at last we have a counterpart in President Trump who is willing to put his ink on legislation passed by the Republican Congress to repeal these terrible rules and regulations.

 

In the past 2 weeks the House has been able to repeal 8 disastrous rules imposed under the Obama Administration. While our work is far from over, the removal of these rules alone has resulted in economic relief to the economy in the form of over 6 billion dollars. The repeal of these rules has been across the board - from rules and regulations projected to increase the strain on our nation’s teachers, rules which would increase burdens on local and state budgets, or new regulatory hurdles which would delay the permitting process on construction projects - the House is using the powers at its disposal as authored in the Congressional Review Act to undo job killing and costly rules finalized by the Obama White House during its last hours in office.

 

When Congress returns to session this week we will repeat this work of reviewing and repealing unnecessary, burdensome, duplicative and costly regulations finalized by the Obama White House in its final months, weeks, days, and hours. Less regulations, lower taxes, reduced federal spending, removal of a bureaucrat between you and your doctor and a return to the days of increased personal freedoms and liberties are just around the corner. Liberals in the House and Senate will continue their tactics of delay and disruptions, but they are only slowing down progress the American people want and deserve. The work of getting our country back to a place where the current generation knows they are leaving future generations better off has just begun. Together we will return America to that light of democracy that invokes respect and awe from those around the globe.

 

Legislative Wrap-Up

 

H.J. Res. 44- Rolls back Obama’s regulations by ending the Bureau of Land Management Planning 2.0 rule that will kill jobs, create unnecessary permitting delays and centralize power to unelected Washington bureaucrats. PASSED- Rep. Smith voted YES.

 

H.J. Res. 57- Overturns the Department of Education’s teacher accountability rule that undermines state and local control over education and further strains state and local budgets. Passed- Rep. Smith voted YES.

 

H.J. Res. 58- Overturns the Department of Education’s teacher preparation rule that provides a disincentive for teachers to help traditionally under-performing students, including those with disabilities and could decrease state funding for education or even increase the cost of higher education. PASSED- Rep. Smith voted YES.

 

H.R. 387- The Email Privacy Act- Brings our email privacy laws into the 21st century and protects Americans’ right to privacy by requiring law enforcement to get a warrant to search through private personal data. PASSED- Rep. Smith voted YES.

 

This Week in D.C.

 

U.S. Rep. Smith Authors Bill Defunding Sanctuary Cities

 

Monday, I filed H.R. 824, the No Transportation Funds for Sanctuary Cities Act to block Federal Highway Trust fund dollars from being awarded to states and local governments if they fail to obey federal immigration laws and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) requests.

 

U.S. Rep. Smith Leads Effort to Overturn Obama Administration Ammunition & Tackle Ban

 

Thursday, I sent a bipartisan letter along with 60 of my colleagues to President Trump urging him to revoke a “midnight rule” from the Obama Administration that would ban lead ammunition and fishing tackle from being used on any public lands.

 

From Defenders of the Unborn:We are closer than we’ve ever been to de-funding Big Abortion—Planned Parenthood (PP). As Congress considers efforts to strip the organization of our billable tax dollars, now is the time for a groundswell of grassroots efforts. Planned Parenthood is America’s largest abortion chain. Over 300,000 babies are killed every year by the abortion giant—on our dime! Nearly half of PP’s billion dollar budget is derived from tax revenue raised by law-abiding citizens. We will call on Congress and President Trump to strip PP of federal funding and reallocate those funds to health centers that help women without killing babies.
www.stl-defenders.com

 


 
January 14th, 2017 PDF Print E-mail
Newsletter

 

Family Covenant Ministries (formerly Christian Home Educators Fellowship) Faithfully honoring God, equipping generations, and serving the homeschooling community for the past 33 years!

www.FamilyCovenantMinistries.com

 

THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME January 2017 Information

http://www.theresnoplacelikehome-summers.com/

 

Our Family’s Vision and Mission

http://www.theresnoplacelikehome-summers.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=section&layout=blog&id=4&Itemid=1

 

Family Covenant Ministries (formerly CHEF) Information and Activities

 

1.  FCM Events

     a.  FCM Annual Ice Skating, Saturday, January 21

     b.  FCM Skiing at Hidden Valley, Friday, February 3

     c.  FCM 33rd Annual Graduation Meetings, Thursday, February 16 and Thursday, March 16

     d.  FCM 19th Annual Heart to Heart Tea, Thursday, March 16

     e.  FCM Purina Farms Field Trip

2.  FCM Notes

3.  Needs and Services

     a.  Deleted Homeschooling Family’s Contact; Please Call Again

 

There’s No Place Like Home Articles

 

1.  Notes from Subscribers

2.  Important Message: Attempts by Liberals to Eliminate the Electoral College

3.  Heart to Heart-Home Sweet Home

4.  Covenantal Families

     a.  Preserving the Heart of Home Through Spending Each Evening Over Delicious Meals and Fun Games

     b.  Games

5.  Casting a Vision for Multigenerational Family Business-G.H. Cretors Since 1885

6.  New Homeschoolers Part XIV-Parents’ Second Chance

7.  In the Library-Every Living Thing by James Herriot

8.  Family Outings-Ark Encounter by Joye Hengst

9.  Summers on the Farm

10.  The Joy of Country Living-Mom, Just Say NO! Practice, N-O!

11.  The Dismantling and Restoring of America

     a.  Trump Convinces Carrier Air Conditioners to Stay in America

     b.  This is What You Get by Everett Piper

     c.  Soros Bands with Donors to Resist Trump, “Take Back Power”

     d.  Destroying America from Inside the Classroom by Tom DeWeese

     e.  EPA Chief Urges Staff to Finish Obama’s Agenda Before Trump Takes Over

     f.  Trans-Pacific Partnership: A Trojan Horse for Obama’s Climate Change Agenda

 

If you get a blank email from us (mailto: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) on your cell phone, please try looking at the email from your computer instead.

 

FCM EVENTS

 

FCM Annual Ice Skating, Saturday, January 21, PLEASE NOTE the change in time: 2:00-5:00 p.m. at the outdoor ice rink at Shaw Park, 217 S. Brentwood Blvd., Clayton, MO 63105. Preregistration cost is $5.50 per skater (includes skate rental, hot chocolate, and paper goods); $6.50 per skater at the door. You may either pay online or mail your check payable to FCM, c/o Sonia Summers, P.O. Box 586, Fredericktown, MO 63645 by January 16. If you are unable to pay online, or experience any difficulties, please contact us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call 314-920-6135.

 

To pay online, use this link and choose Annual Ice Skating by clicking on the arrow on the Event List drop-down menu.

https://familycovenantministries.com/index.php?option=com_rsform&formId=12

 

Under Reservation, make sure the Ticket Type “Family” is selected if more than one person is coming. Then select the appropriate “Number of Attendees” in your family.

 

To get this deal, we must pay in advance, so please pay online or send your check in by the deadline. However, if you are able to come at the last minute, we will still be able to accommodate your family, but it will cost $1 more per skater. Do not pay at the ticket window; pay us. Just make certain that the ticket window knows that you are with the FCM (CHEF) group. This outdoor rink is a beautiful place to skate. Bring a finger food or plate of cookies to share, as we will set up hot chocolate in the warmed seating area just off the rink.

 

For those of you who would like to join us following Ice Skating, we will be having a light dinner at Steak ‘n Shake, 1525 S. Kirkwood Road, St. Louis, MO 63127, just south of Hwy 44.

 

 

FCM Skiing at Hidden Valley Ski Resort, Friday, February 3, 4:00 p.m.-1:00 a.m. at 17409 Hidden Valley Drive, Wildwood, MO 63025. Enjoy the best outdoor wintertime sport at a fabulous price. Join us for an Adult moonlight skiing session.

 

Snow Pass (Lift Ticket) and Ski/Snowboard Equipment Rental

Group rate for ages 13 and above: $53.25 per person

Group rate for ages 7-12: $44.75 per person

[Regular price is $71]

Ski Lesson (Ages 8 and above): Only $5.38

Snowboard Lesson (Ages 8 and above): Only $16.14

Lessons begin promptly at 5:00 and 7:00 p.m.

 

Send in your check by January 28 payable to FCM, c/o Josiah Summers, P.O. Box 586, Fredericktown, MO 63645.

 

There is a warm viewing area and food available. Call Josiah with any questions at 314-920-6135. We look forward to seeing you there.

 

 

FCM 33rd Annual Graduation If you have a graduate, please email your graduate’s name, parents’ names, address, phone, and email address to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Shortly after we receive your information, we will email our Welcome packet. Our meetings will be held on Thursday, February 16 and Thursday, March 16 from 1:00-3:00 p.m. at the beautiful Salem United Methodist Church, 1200 S. Lindbergh Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63131. Conveniently located on the northeast corner of Hwy 40/64 on Lindbergh Blvd., a little north of Frontenac Plaza. To give you an idea of the focus of our graduation you may read the godly and inspiring charge, “Destined to Make a Difference,” which was presented by Bob Wells in 2010 by going to http://www.familycovenantministries.com/. Click on “Services” and scroll to the bottom of the page.

 

 

FCM 19th Annual Heart to Heart Mother/Daughter Tea (Mothers without Daughters are Welcome!), Thursday, March 16, 7:00-10:00 p.m. at the Hawken House Hearth Room, 1155 S. Rock Hill Road, St. Louis, MO 63119. Preregistration cost is $11 per person; $12 per person at the door. Teaching topic will be announced shortly. Mothers without daughters are welcome to come. Come and enjoy great fellowship, wonderful teachings, tea and delectable pastries with other homeschooling moms. You may either pay online or mail your check payable to FCM, c/o Sonia Summers, PO Box 586, Fredericktown, MO by March 14 to reserve your place. If you are unable to pay online, or experience any difficulties, please contact us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call 314-920-6135.

 

To pay online, use this link and choose 19th Annual Heart to Heart Mother/Daughter Tea by clicking on the arrow on the Event List drop-down menu.

https://familycovenantministries.com/index.php?option=com_rsform&formId=12

 

Under Reservation, make sure the Ticket Type “Family” is selected if more than one person is coming. Then select the appropriate “Number of Attendees” in your family.

 

Directions: If you take Hwy. 270 south, exit at Big Bend Road. Go east on Big Bend approximately 4 miles to S. Rock Hill Road. Go right on Rock Hill for 2 blocks. The house is just past Hawken Condominiums on the right. Barn is on right in back of Hawken House. There is no Big Bend exit if you are going north on Hwy. 270. Therefore, if you take Hwy. 270 north, go east on Hwy. 44. Exit at Big Bend Road and go east for approximately 1.5 miles to S. Rock Hill Road. Then follow above directions.

 

 

FCM Field Trip to Purina Farms in April or May Look for details in upcoming newsletters.

 

 

 

FCM NOTES Each correspondence deeply blesses our hearts. Thank you.

 

It was so good to see you. It is always such a delight to be around you and your happy family. Jon, I really appreciate your enthusiasm and dedication. If all Christians would stand up and fight for what we know is right, our battle would already be won. You’re doing a great job! I also truly appreciate your commitment to your family and your vision for the future. You are an inspiration to any father to be more of a godly leader in his home as well as in his country. I pray you will never lose sight of the vision God has given you. Candy, you have been such a blessing in my life. You, too, are a role model for all of us. You are always willing to help and encourage those who are in need even though you are extremely busy. You have encouraged me to be “going about my Father’s business.” I’ll never forget the wise words you once said: “Don’t be self-conscious. Be Christ conscious. Everything we do, we should do for God and for His glory.”

 

Here is something I learned from a man at our church. I am sure you know that when geese fly, they fly in a V formation with different geese taking turns being the leader. Being the leader, the one at the point, is the most difficult position to be in. The lead goose has to flap harder than those that follow because he is cutting through the wind. The other geese get a free ride or an easier ride on the air currents produced by the leader. Did you know that followers “honk” when they are in formation and that when they honk, it is to be an encouragement to the lead goose to “Keep going!” to tell him “You can do it!” and “You’re doing great!” Well, Jon and Candy, I am honking for you. You’re doing a great job! I know you don’t seek the praise of men, but you are a blessing. You work so hard for so many people, and I know I speak for others when I say, “Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!” God bless you as you serve Him! Hillsboro, MO

 

 

THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME Celebrating 31 years of inspiration, encouragement, and biblical instruction www.theresnoplacelikehome-summers.com

 

Stay tuned as we are creating a brand new website for There’s No Place Like Home that will be brighter, prettier, filled with more pictures, easier to navigate, and more easily accessible for smart phones.

 

NOTES FROM SUBSCRIBERS Each correspondence deeply blesses our hearts. Thank you!

 

I want to thank you for these homeschool newsletters. I can’t even imagine how you put together so much information so often. I don’t think I have read one all the way through yet, but I forwarded the last one to my wife. She did read it all the way through, and she learned a lot of what I had learned earlier… about homeschooling. This tended to bring us into even greater agreement regarding our homeschooling. –Cedar Creek, TX

 

 

ATTEMPTS BY LIBERALS TO ELIMINATE THE ELECTORAL COLLEGE

 

Attempts by liberals to eliminate the Electoral College have been underway for many years. Most recently it has gained tremendous support from Americans who do not understand why our founders created a Christian Republic instead of a Democracy—in more definitive words—mob rule, thus the reason for an Electoral College. It is vastly important that you and your children understand this critical issue! Please go to the link below and read the article by Tom DeWeese. Then go to our Essential Book List:

http://theresnoplacelikehome-summers.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=775:updated-2009-essential-booklist&catid=62:in-the-library&Itemid=56 and begin reading the books that will ensure your children’s understanding of God’s design for government, our Founders, and the Christian Republic they created. There isn’t a better list of books and resources anywhere. You have the time and opportunity to make a difference in your children’s lives and in our nation. Make your time count!

 

The Anti-Trump Riots Are a Smoke Screen: The Real Goal-Eliminate the Electoral College by Tom DeWeese

I’ve actually heard it said by residents of California, San Francisco, in particular, “Why do we even let people in Ohio and Iowa vote?” Such elitism is behind the “National Popular Vote” movement, which apparently believes that only the East and West Coasts count. The rest is just flyover country.

http://americanpolicy.org/2016/11/21/the-anti-trump-riots-are-a-smoke-screen-the-real-goal-eliminate-the-electoral-college/?mc_cid=fd357d0fbb&mc_eid=c997d162a8

 

 

HEART TO HEART

 

Remembering 30 Years

 

Home Sweet Home

[I wrote this article 24 years ago. Thankfully our grown children still dislike being separated and prefer our family’s company.]

 

An hour ago, I returned home from a women’s fellowship. Before I reached the back door, Heather ran out to greet me with a hug, a kiss, and, “Mom, you stayed a lot longer than we expected.” (I was gone four hours.) “I’m so glad you’re home!” Sonia and Jedidiah grabbed me at the door, showered me with hugs and kisses, all while continuously repeating loving adorations—“Mama, Mama, Mama!” There couldn’t possibly be a dearer greeting. Jon, in the meantime, waded through the pool of rejoicing and managed a warm embrace and kiss, further affirming a welcomed return. Wow, it was great to be back home!

 

Shortly after this joyous homecoming, while putting Sonia and Jedidiah down for a nap, Sonia said, “Mama, we sure missed you!” Jedidiah stopped nursing long enough to agree with his adorable, “Me, me!”

Mama: I missed you all a lot, too.

Sonia: Did you cry for us?

Mama: My heart ached to be home with you.

Sonia: Mama, I cry when you’re gone.

Jedidiah: Me, me.

Sonia: I really miss you when you’re gone.

Jedidiah: Me, me.

Sonia: Mama, I really love you.

Jedidiah: Me, me.

Mama: And I really love the both of you.

 

My absences from my family are as frequent as Halley’s comet. On these few occasions, I have tried to enjoy the break away. Unfortunately, no matter how great the fellowship, I feel as if my heart shall break, and the family ties that bind us together immediately start tugging for me to return. Our world labels this neurotic, unhealthy affection, but I believe it perfectly natural.

 

Haven’t you heard moms say that they send their kids to preschool because the family appreciated each other more? What a ridiculous and sad excuse. Homeschoolers are living testimonies that the families that stay together appreciate each other all the more. The most delightful part of each day is the time I spend playing with Sonia and Jedidiah. No matter what I suggest or have planned, their bodies wiggle with excite­ment from head to toe. Today I had planned a scavenger hunt, relay races, finger plays, singing, dancing, and reading. It was during the scavenger hunt that my soaring spirit was temporarily tormented by a dreadful memory of yesteryear.

 

I was sitting in the center of our living room watching Sonia and Jedidiah bubbling over with excitement as they searched for hidden treasures. Nothing is more enjoyable for me than listening to my babies’ delightful giggles and seeing their sweet little faces twinkling with excitement! I too wiggled and giggled as I basked in that glorious blessing. Suddenly though, the warmth turned to a chill as I remembered sitting in the middle of children at a day care center.

 

As part of my training, I was required to spend a semester in the University’s day care facility. Day after day, I watched screaming, clinging children pried from their mothers. Neglected babies cried themselves to sleep. Dry cereal dumped on the table was considered breakfast. Naps were taken on cots lined up against the wall like bunks in a dormitory. It was ghastly! Oh, I had fine scavenger hunts, relay races, finger plays, dancing, singing, and reading activities planned throughout my stay, but their eyes were rather dull compared to my children’s twinkling stars, and their laughter never sounded as happy as my children’s giggles. Every wretched day, my heart ached for these little children. It seemed so absurd leaving one’s baby with strangers. What was wrong with all these mothers? How could they be so heartless and cold-blooded? And Lord, what would these children be like when they grew up?

 

Fourteen years later, I still hate day care centers and preschools. Next to abortion, I believe they are Satan’s most ghastly evil. I never pass one that my heart doesn’t break all over again.

Giggles and hugs brought me back to the center of my living room once again to the reality of God’s greatest gift to mothers. How thankful I felt that I was right there with my very own children. Truly, there’s no place like home!

 

 

COVENANTAL FAMILIES

 

Remembering 30 Years-One of the articles we have written over the years

 

Preserving the Heart of Home Through Spending Each Evening Over Delicious Meals and Fun Games

 

It seems appropriate at this time of preserving the heart of homeschooling, that we reiterate the importance of the heart of home, namely, the gathering together as a family around the dining room table. Throughout the last 23 years, I have taught and written on the vast importance of this daily ritual, emphasizing the importance of this time spent together sharing meals, books, and games.

 

What makes comfort foods, well, so comfortable? I think that it is a combination of the smells that evoke childhood memories, the rich texture of heartier substance, and the delectable taste of the foods that warm our stomachs as well as our souls. The old saying that a way to a man’s heart is through his stomach is not so far off as we may like to think, for truly food does move the emotions. So comfort food is indeed comfortable. Beef roasts, pot roasts, rib roasts, round steak with gravy, mashed potatoes, roasted chicken, chicken and dumplings, pork tenderloin with caramelized onions and fruit compote, stew, vegetable soup, breads, bread pudding, chocolate cake, and cinnamon rolls—just the mention of these lovely meals warms my family’s hearts, making the answer to “what’s for dinner?” a real treat each night.

 

Gathering around the family dining table is certainly the most pleasurable defining moment of the day. How blessed we are as mothers to have the opportunity to warm our family’s hearts and their stomachs each and every day. Being a part of God’s great design to bring families together over and over again for feeding minds, hearts and bodies, we have the perfect opportunity to shape the tastes and minds of each gathered member.

 

To pass on your love for fine dining, copy all your signature dishes and place in a beautiful recipe binder for your daughter as part of her rich inheritance.

 

How many times will our favorite recipes be passed around the family, and through how many generations will they travel to delight our loved ones? My favorites are signed with thumbprint smudges that tell a story of my love and care for my family.

 

For my family, any excuse was reason enough to gather together around the table and feast. As a matter of fact, each evening meal was a great celebration. “What’s for dinner?” wasn’t idle conversation, but a question we took seriously. If food was cooking, we all lifted lids and stuck our noses right in the delicious perfumes that wafted upward from the heavenly creations. After prayers were said and the feasting commenced, “ooo eee’s,” “mmm um um um’s,” and “yummies” passed around faster than the salt and peppershakers. We savored each delectable mouthful and ate until our empty tummies were filled.

 

And then of course, there was always splendiferous dessert, so we just released our belts a notch or two and enjoyed some more. You know how it is; you start out with one piece and a glass of milk. You finish the glass of milk before your piece of dessert is finished, so you pour some more; then you finish your dessert but have half a glass of milk left, so instead of wasting the milk, you have another piece of dessert. It’s hard to finish both dessert and milk at the same time, which makes the joyful journey last longer. I’ve always been somewhat suspicious of people who don’t like desserts. It’s just not natural to refuse creations made from butter, sugar, eggs, cream and such. How could anyone refuse Deep Dish Buttermilk Pie, Piña Colada Cheesecake, Chocolate Cake, Cinnamon Rolls, Baklava, or Gooey Butter Cake?

 

A penchant for cooking and feasting is a family legacy as my grandmother owned a restaurant, aunts and uncles owned bakeries, another set owned a grocery store, one uncle was a hotel chef, while another was president of the Meat Cutters union. Their plump, jolly faces are just faded images from my past, but I inherited their passion for cooking. However, it is my mother to whom I truly owe my great love for preparing meals for my family. It was out of her deep love for us and her inherited appreciation for delicious meals that she took great care in ministering to us through God’s gracious gifts.

 

My dad, too, deserves recognition for his appreciation of mom’s cooking and also his passion for growing beautiful vegetables and fruit. I, in turn, learned to love all the wonderful foods God created for our enjoyment—their beautiful colors, interesting shapes and textures, heady aromas, and rich flavors. I love to walk into Schnucks’ European market and choose from God’s splendid banquet table of culinary delights—beautiful red and yellow peppers, carrots with their fine greenery attached, fragrant pineapples, furry kiwis, interestingly shaped squash, shiny rainbow trout, bright orange salmon, lovely edible flowers for garnishing, beautiful rump roasts, thick chops, colorful peppercorns, fragrant cloves, pearled barley, long loaves, round loaves, and individual loaves of wheat, rye and pumpernickel. Wow, what a treat! Even the chosen words for which we prepare these delectable goodies are rich and delightful—simmer, sauté, ladle, stuff, mince, knead, purée, roll, blend, melt, sprinkle, pinch, grate, toss, toast, roast, braise, sift, thicken, slice, pare, and crown.

 

To minister to my own family by preparing meals for them that not only appeal to their senses but also satisfy their hunger and strengthen their bodies is so rewarding, but even beyond these, to have Dad home, gathering together at the end of each day to pray and give thanks to our Lord, to sup one with another, looking into each other’s eyes, to share the same food and the news of each person’s experiences that day binds us together and nourishes our souls. It is the highlight of each day when we linger together enjoying each other’s company sharing “mmm, mmm goods.”

 

When I was a child, nothing gave me greater pleasure than listening to my mom and dad talk as we sat around our dinner table. I loved to hear their interesting stories, their thoughts and feelings, their laughter and joy. Feasting on every word, I would sit for hours as they filled my little soul with the rich cream of life.

 

It is still the highlight of each day when we gather together around our table, as we join hands and hearts, to give thanks to our Lord, to sup one with another, to look into each other’s eyes while we share each other’s experiences and bare our souls. Lingering there, well after all is eaten, we continue to nourish our souls knowing full well that it is truly the most important sustenance that continually draws us closer into a never-ending circle of love. It is around this table that we learn to develop authentic, intimate relationships that will not only transcend the miles in later years, but will also set a pattern for all future relationships. In essence, it is the gathering place where we learn and practice the art of friendship.

 

When just babes, we begin learning the most basic and foremost lesson—that of listening. At first, we can do nothing but listen, which is good, so by the time we find our way to express our own thoughts, we’ve had plenty of time listening to endless conversations—where those we love have shared interesting discoveries, intimate thoughts, frequent reminiscences, laughter and joy—and we begin to understand the blessings of sharing one with another. We learn to reach beyond ourselves and dip deep into the well of another’s soul. In this depth of our knowledge of the other’s soul, we learn the basis for rich and meaningful relationships.

 

From watching and listening to our parents, and with practice, we learn to concentrate, with genuine interest and concern, listening with eyes and heart as well as ears, and to respond with questions and appropriate comments of understanding and encouragement. Out of all this sharing naturally flows our own thoughts, and in such a safe sanctuary, we in turn learn to share honestly from the depth of our own souls.

 

To truly know the pleasures, needs, and desires of others, and to share from the depth of our hearts is a precious gift from God. Come, gather around your table and experience that fullness of life and impart to your children an inheritance that will richly bless them all the rest of their lives.

 

 

Games

 

I have played games with my children most every day of their lives, and continue to do so, even though my children are now in their twenties. Instead of going off and doing our own thing, coming together to play games (and reading out loud) keeps us focused on one another to enjoy each other’s company. It is a tightly held tradition, which I am proud to have begun, and one the children love. Games and book reading have always been eagerly anticipated and greatly enjoyed.

 

Our Favorite Family Games include Dutch Blitz, Ticket to Ride, Genoa, Pinochle, Parcheesi, Sequence, Rummikub, Around the World in 80 Days, King’s Cribbage, Mystery Express, Oltre Mare, Risk, Scotland Yard, Scrabble, Scattergories, Taboo…

For a complete list go to:

http://theresnoplacelikehome-summers.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=775:updated-2009-essential-booklist&catid=62:in-the-library&Itemid=56.

More games will be added to this shortly as we learn to play the six new games we purchased for Christmas.

 

 

CASTING A VISION FOR MULTIGENERATIONAL FAMILY BUSINESS

 

G. H. Cretors Since 1885

 

Instead of popping popcorn to have with our movie, Sonia surprised the boys with G. H. Cretors Chicago Mix of buttery caramel corn and rich cheddar cheese corn. Renee Yeo had brought some with her when she and her family came for an extended stay. The boys liked it so much that Sonia decided to surprise them with some more. Jedidiah noticed it was a multigenerational family business and read their story to us from the back of the bag.

 

It all began in 1885 when Great Grandpa Cretors invented the popcorn machine and our family began perfecting the art of popping corn. His “modern machine” appeared at the Chicago Columbian Exposition in 1893, and for five generations we’ve followed in his corn-popping footsteps, taste-testing recipes around our kitchen table. Today we make our Caramel Corn just like Great Grandpa did—in old-fashioned copper kettles, one batch at a time. Then we mix it up the Chicago way, with our rich, creamy, Aged Cheddar Cheese Corn to create the perfect combination of Sweet and Salty. You don’t even have to come to Chicago to try this special treat. From our kitchen to yours, enjoy!

http://www.ghcretors.com/

 

 
 

(Remembering 30 Years-I have actually been presenting the New Homeschoolers workshop for 31 years. This presentation has changed very little through the years.)

 

NEW HOMESCHOOLERS-Part XIV as presented at the Conference

 

Parents’ Second Chance

 

Without Direction, Time, and Materials, I Felt Woefully Lacking

 

As with most children, when I was young, my parents were the most important people in the world to me. I valued their company above everyone else, as my greatest pleasure came from being with them and pleasing them. My feelings for my heavenly Father were identical, as I desired to know Him fully and please Him in all my ways. I took my Bible with me to school and read it whenever I had a free moment. Sadly, those moments were few and far between, as I spent the majority of my days at an institution that not only kept me far from my heavenly Father and earthly parents, but also continually undermined my relationship with them.

 

Even my church failed to teach me the depth of God’s wisdom and, in many ways, also worked to undermine the bond we shared. When I got older, I tried to get my hands on deep theological books, but there was little available to the layman. Without direction, time, and materials, I felt woefully lacking. But then God did a wonderful thing for me by giving me a second chance to truly know Him and keep my children close by calling me to homeschool.

 

At first there were not many materials available at our homeschool conference, but then God did another marvelous work by calling my husband and I to become leaders of our state organization and thus the hosts of our state conference. As voracious readers and seekers of meaty information, Jon and I immediately began searching for the godliest speakers and the best materials available so that our families had access to the finest teaching tools.

 

Through these resources, God graciously opened up a veritable treasure chest of the riches of His wisdom to us as we began consuming excellent theological and providential history books, which I read to my children during the day, and to Jon and the children at night. Studying chronologically, line upon line, God’s plan for creation finally became crystal clear as we all came to realize why God raised up particular individuals and orchestrated events in history to bring about His will. And we began to understand that God blessed nations according to their obedience and destroyed them for their rebellion.

 

Taking us by the hand, God led us to His plenteous banquet table and allowed us to dine with Him. Realizing the enormity of this marvelous blessing caused me to cry tears of overwhelming appreciation for His mercy and generosity in divulging His providence to us—His wisdom, forethought, prudence, and provision. Consequently, I consider homeschooling a precious gift from God because I now feast with my family at the King’s table every day. If, however, I had given my children their books and told them to go, do, and come back to be graded, I would have missed the most extraordinary gift of learning with my children!

 

Our Days Were Mostly Spent Reading, Reasoning, Relating, and Recounting

 

Unlike the typical schooling paradigm, our days were mostly spent reading, reasoning, relating, and recounting with me reading out loud to the children and stopping along the way to define and diagram words; examine and discuss fundamental principles; analyze events and people; ask thought provoking questions that delved into events, people’s motives, and the righteousness and unrighteousness of thoughts, attitudes, and actions evaluated according to God’s Word; and consider the consequences and impact on the culture, and history, at large.

 

In addition to all our books, we used other valuable tools of the trade such as our 1828 dictionary, timelines, maps, travelogues, CDs, DVDs, cookbooks, art supplies, and family excursions. Each of these further enriched our lessons about the religion, philosophy, family life, church life, government, history, authors, historians, theologians, scientists, mathematicians, artists, musicians, architecture, geography, landscape, climate, vegetation, and wildlife of each time period of history. From these resources, I had the children write notes in their His Story notebooks, along with vocabulary words and definitions, maps and diagrams, pictures and reports. In short, we lived each time period.

 

By failing to comprehend the significance of discipleship, so many homeschoolers miss the marvelous opportunity God offers to them by learning together as a family. Homeschooling is not about bringing school home, as we knew it, with all its modern socialistic methods of instruction. All things considered, taking our children out of the school system and placing a Christian curriculum in their hands is not what God requires of us.

 

When He commands that we disciple our children when we rise up, when we walk along the way, when we sit down, and when we lie down, He means that we keep them alongside us all the time—to learn with them and to develop those deep bonds of familial love that are so important to our posterity and the whole of society. Thus, if we say to them, go, do, and then come back to be graded, we miss the greatest opportunity God offers us in learning together as a family.

 

The Absurdity of the Common Approach to Instruction

 

To better understand the absurdity of the common approach to instruction, allow me to illustrate the instructional methodology practiced by both schools and parents at home. Pretend you are my students as I read aloud about the Walla Wallas. I am going to ask questions afterwards, so pay attention.

 

Okay, class, open up your history books to page one hundred and follow along as I read. In 400 A.D. the Walla Wallas lived in the land of Zor between the Tritans and the Ombees. The ancient Walla Wallas developed one of the most impressive cultures the world has known. The Walla Wallas lived on the Golumpulus Peninsula between the Rizorius Sea and Ottoompus Sea. The Walla Wallas were descendants of Jubuhubuda, son of Reclesia. The first Walla Wallas were the Tritorians who lived in the Zoraborous and Futoboozoo who developed the magnificent city of Luz. The Walla Wallas took the alphabet from the Phopians and added more consonants. They then created beautiful pieces of literature still read today. Maybe you have read the books of Milliad, Nickapoosia, and Fioridum? These three writers compiled over 3,869,752 resbians known as books today.

 

Now who can tell me where the Walla Wallas lived? Weren’t you paying attention? The Golumpulous Peninsula is between what two seas? You obviously were not listening! The Walla Wallas were descendants of whom? I am so disappointed! Well, this will be your homework tonight to reread so you can answer these questions tomorrow.

 

Is that scenario any different from handing your child a book and telling him or her to read page 100 and then answer the questions at the end of the chapter? Ponder this situation by taking the place of the student, once again, and begin reading: Greece is located on the Balkan Peninsula between the Aegean Sea and the Ionian Sea. The Greeks were descendants of Japheth’s son Javan. The first Greeks were the Minoans who lived on the island of Crete. In 700 B.C., the Greeks took the alphabet from the Phoenicians and added vowels. The blind bard, Homer, turned old Greek stories into poems called the Iliad and Odyssey.

 

What does this information really mean to a child? Absolutely nothing! If children have never heard, or read, anything about the Greeks, new information such as this is like reading a foreign language for the first time. If it is not studied in conjunction with other materials, it holds no meaning and relates to nothing familiar, so is not of interest except to memorize for passing quizzes and tests. After those are completed, invariably the information is forgotten.

 

The Importance of Logical Order

 

To further demonstrate this point, let us consider another example. If we put A over here on the board, and C down here, and T up here, we have nothing but letters. But if we take those three letters and order them in such a manner to spell CAT, we immediately visualize a cat.

 

One day as I was incorporating ingredients together for a cake, I inadvertently added a tablespoon of onion juice instead of vanilla creating a repulsive odor that prompted me to pitch the batter. Onion juice just does not belong in cake. Serving barbeque pork steaks with a bowl of oatmeal, chocolate cake and orange juice for dinner is distasteful. Yet by integrating the right ingredients such as flour, butter, eggs, sugar, and vanilla, we create a nourishing, delicious, masterpiece that is both appetizing and nutritious.

 

Consider for a moment the illogical, incongruous mental meals children consume each day of school. They might begin reading a story about the Chinese Red Plum tree, write a story about being an astronaut, look over a grouping of spelling words that have nothing in common, explore the battles of the Civil War, study dinosaurs, examine Bach’s life, and then create a mosaic ocean scene for art class. Do you find this absurd? Created in the image of an orderly, logical, reasonable God makes this method of education absurd.

 

Our society is so age segregated, grade segregated and subject segregated that the so-called experts have distorted the logical natural process of learning. As parents, we want to form lasting whole impressions upon our children’s minds, not fragmented passing thoughts. How do we accomplish this?

 

First by studying together as a family with each member laboring together to build the family’s educational foundation. Secondly by making history, or in other words, His Story, the focal point. Thirdly, by studying history in chronological order with each time period serving as an interlocking building block. And finally by cementing the building blocks together by interweaving the other subjects, we create a solid, secure structure of lasting impressions that each family member relates to, understands, and remembers.

 

God’s Plan Revealed in the Chronological Study of History

 

Rather than studying historical people and events in isolation, if we relate our subjects together, we view history as interrelated and superintended by the Creator of all things. To understand God’s nature, and His plan for mankind, history must be studied in chronological order from Creation to the Egyptian Empire, Babylonian Empire, Persian, Greek, Roman, Renaissance, Reformation, American history and so forth. With this we can see the rise and fall of nations according to their sins and why God raised up people in every time period to bring about His plan for His glory. It is essential to our lives as Christians and makes all the difference in our capability of taking dominion of this earth for His glory.

 

Our Bibles should be read as history. We should also be diligent in studying the history of the church throughout the ages. The book, Sketches of Church History, and the DVD series, From Terror to Triumph, are both essential resources for understanding God’s plan through the ages.

 

After children have a thorough phonetic foundation, instead of continuing with graded readers, they should read books about the time period you are studying or by authors that lived at that time. For language they can study and copy literature of that time and do research papers about that time period.

 

Science is the study of the scientists of that time and their field of study. For music and art, study the artists, art, composers and music of the time period, so everything is integrated and working together to make sense while forming lasting impressions.

 

Some Examples from Our Study of the Middle Ages

 

Let me take a moment now to contemplate the possibilities as I present examples of things our family did when we studied the Middle Ages. We kept a notebook of pictures, diagrams, maps, and reports. Read The Gift of Music and listened to Gregorian chants while recreating lovely manuscripts of Holy Writ. Studied knights, chivalry, and horses. Read The Red Keep, The Door in the Wall, Medallion, Ivanhoe, Robin Hood, and The Blood of the Moon. Played backgammon, blind man’s bluff, checkers and chess—all games of the time period. Watched a video on castles. Constructed a castle with sugar cubes. Played with our Playmobil castle. Watched a hawking demonstration. Visited the art museum to see tapestries and other medieval art. Wove our own tapestry. Created our own coat of arms. Fenced and visited an archery range. Studied Gothic art and watched a video on castles. Visited cathedrals and sat in on a Latin service. Had a market day at Soulard market. Hosted a medieval banquet. Studied about Henry the VIII and Queen Elizabeth. Watched a travelogue on England.

 

Took the children to the Cheshire Inn, dressed in medieval costumes, read English poetry and parts of Henry the Fifth; sat in front of the fire at the Fox and Hound Pub, nibbled on cheeses and crackers while we played checkers and chess; dined in their medieval banquet hall surrounded by casement windows, armor, coat of arms and medieval flags, and stuffed game. Then we returned to the Inn’s medieval lounge and played King’s Cribbage and Royal Queen of Hearts before we retired to our medieval themed room.

 

Studied the Magna Charta, the scientist Roger Bacon, the travels of Marco Polo, and the bravery of William Wallace. Learned about Scotland. Read about God’s judgment in The Black Death. Read The Hundred Year War, Wycliffe: The Morning Star of the Reformation, Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, and Henry the Navigator of Portugal. The latter began a study on ships, navigation, and astronomy. Learned to tie knots and played with our Playmobil ship. Enjoyed a seafood buffet. Studied the impact of John Hus, Henry V, Joan of Arc, Gutenberg’s printing press and Isabella and Ferdinand of Spain. Began a study of Spain. Learned about Columbus, Cabot, Vasco da Gama, and Amerigo Vespucci. Learned about mapmaking and made our own maps.

 

Studied the Renaissance—the rebirth of paganism, which created a spiritual decline for 300 years. Since the Renaissance began in Italy, we studied Italy: the land, the people, the language, the religion, their art, music, food, literature, and climate. We watched a travelogue of Italy, visited Italian restaurants, made Italian food, studied Italian words, and delved into the art of Donatello, Botticelli, Leonardo da Vinci, Albrecht Durer, and Michelangelo.

 

Learned about Copernicus, Martin Luther, Ulrich Zwingli, the Reformation and its great theologians. Studied about the kings and queens of England, France and Spain. Learned about Tyndale and the Reformation in England, Calvin and the Reformation in France, Knox and the Reformation in Scotland, Edward the Sixth-England’s Reformed king, Queen Elizabeth, the Huguenots of France, William of Orange and the Dutch reformation, Reformation hymns, the Spanish Armada, and the Pilgrims.

 

Read Pyke and Dyke and then studied Holland. Watched a travelogue on Holland and then took the children to Pella, Iowa for their Tulip Festival where everyone was dressed in Dutch costume. We toured their Dutch town, participated in a Dutch Reformation service, and watched a parade of the history of the Dutch. Then we studied American history and have been studying that for the last eight years.

 

Unlike how you and I learned history, we didn’t study early American history one year, Old World history the next, the Civil War, then the Babylonian conquests, World War II, and back to American history. We studied history in chronological order, thoroughly immersing ourselves in each age of God’s plan. Living history ensured that our children understood and remembered, making repetition unnecessary.

 

Leaders Are Readers!

 

After reading hundreds upon hundreds of books to our children, we compiled a list of the most essential volumes under Our Essential Booklist. You may access this list here:

http://theresnoplacelikehome-summers.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=775:updated-2009-essential-booklist&catid=62:in-the-library&Itemid=56

Studying these books will ensure that your children come to know God intimately, understand His providential plan for mankind, deeply appreciate their Christian heritage, greatly value their country’s Christian heritage, and in general, produce intellectual giants among men.

 

Our Greatest Gift to Our Children is a Library of Their Own

 

To safeguard truth for their posterity, Christians throughout history diligently discipled their children and sacrificed present consumption for long-term investments that would one day pay off in the success of future generations. This is particularly true of the reformers who shaped our country’s founding fathers, who, in turn, produced the greatest Christian civilization known to man. Their future oriented vision, and subsequent sacrificial living, led to the tremendous liberty and vast success Americans enjoyed in each century that followed.

 

Understanding this biblical and historical truth sheds light on the immensity of our influence that will ultimately impact future generations for centuries to come. Realizing that homeschooling is not just for our children, but also for our future posterity, the nation, and the world at large, should prompt sober circumspection of our gigantic responsibility.

 

When it comes to the importance of safeguarding our posterity’s liberty by developing a biblical worldview through divine scholarly works, there is nothing more important than building our children’s personal libraries. Therefore, it is not just about reading these excellent books to our children, but purchasing these books for each of them so that they are able to pass on this awe-inspiring wisdom to their posterity.

 

There is no inheritance more valuable than a vast accumulation of excellent books that have provided centuries of reading, reasoning, relating, and recounting. A library of their own of these volumes is the greatest gift we could ever give to our children!

 

 

IN THE LIBRARY

 

Every Living Thing by James Herriot

 

Each winter we bring out the Best of James Herriot to reread our favorite stories about a country vet’s life in the charming idyllic countryside of Yorkshire, England. Now, thanks to the Keithly family, we have another work of Herriot’s entitled Every Living Thing. Offering more heart-warming stories of James Herriot’s relationships with the people and animals he served, this copy rates a treasured addition to our library.

 

Once I began reading this book to the children, they continued to ask for more of Herriot’s endearing stories until they were all read. Saddened that they came to an end, we now look forward to the rereading of them very soon. Really, we never get tired of reliving this author’s adventures, over and over again. We are not the only ones who think so, as this book is renowned as a #1 International Bestseller.

 

The Chicago Sun-Times underscores its renown by stating, “Like its predecessors, this graceful collection of essays about the hardy dalesmen and women of Yorkshire and their animals is like a cup of hot sugared tea by the fire. Funny and poignant, it’s the work of a mature memorist who has learned to polish his reminiscences to a mellow gleam.”

 

But perhaps the Book-of-the-Month Club News says it best when they wrote: “Herriot’s love for animals radiates from every page…there is a deep sense of reassurance in these tales, a sense that the world is essentially a place where patience and kindness make a difference and where laughter can defuse a crisis. Every Living Thing is a book to treasure and to share with family and friends.”

 

My sentiments exactly! Since Herriot begins this book with the scripture, Be fruitful and multiply, and replenish the earth and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth on the earth, followed by a story set in Spring, I believe that this book would make the perfect gift for celebrating Spring in your household. So plan ahead and purchase one now to bring out on March 20th as a “spring has sprung” gift.

 

 

FAMILY OUTINGS

 

Ark Encounter by Joye Hengst

 

Answers in Genesis opened the Ark Encounter in July 2016 in Williamstown, Kentucky, halfway between Cincinnati and Lexington. Spanning 510 feet long, 85 feet wide, and 51 feet high, the replica of Noah’s Ark took my breath away when I saw it from a distance for the first time in July (just like when I saw St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome in 2015). The Ark is the largest timber frame structure in the world and is beautiful inside and out.

 

The exhibits present depictions of the global Flood and how Noah and his family could have taken care of all those animals. I enjoyed seeing all the realistic replicas of modern and extinct animals on the Ark. Other attractions at the theme park are the Ararat Ridge Zoo, a restaurant, and zip lines. Future attractions include a movie theater and a walled city.

 

You can purchase Ark tickets separately or Creation Museum + Ark combo tickets. The Creation Museum opened in 2007 in Petersburg, Kentucky (45 minutes from the Ark Encounter).

 

The real purpose of the Ark is a reminder of the message of salvation. Noah had to place one door in the Ark—and only those who went through that one door were saved from the judgment of the Flood, just as Jesus Christ is the one way to salvation, as He said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6).

 

For more information, see https://arkencounter.com/. If you visit the Ark, I hope you enjoy it as much as my husband and I did!

 

 

SUMMERS ON THE FARM Everything we do is being recorded for our posterity to know and understand the loving sacrifices we made to ensure their prosperity!

 

-I sat down with the boys to discuss converting the old farmhouse into a butcher shop and commercial kitchen. After determining the configuration, Josiah drew up plans to scale and then I filled in the purpose of each room. Jedidiah and I wrote up a list of pertinent questions to ask the contractor.

-We had five Jersey heifers delivered today. (Five instead of the seven my family picked out because just a month ago, we purchased two of their milk cows that needed homes.) They are very pretty, calm, and inquisitive. I really like their personalities. Jedidiah has already begun working with them to get them used to human contact. When they calve in February, Jedidiah and Sonia will be milking 10 cows. I put in our Christmas letter that we would have 150 gallons of milk a week by then, but when I refigured, I realized that it is an average of 420 gallons of milk a week. Wow! I do hope that God provides enough customers for that amount of milk.

-The boys separated the sows from the gilts to get ready for breeding.

-The boar that bred our sows last time was delivered today. He will stay with us for a couple of months to breed the sows in anticipation for two more spring litters. He is quite at home here and knows the lay of the property as he roams with the girls.

-We met with the contractor to discuss the conversion of the old farmhouse into a butcher shop and commercial kitchen. He went into the attic, looked at the walls and floors of each room, investigated the exterior of the building, looked into the crawl space, and walked into the cellar while we talked to him about what we wanted to do with each room. After looking at the foundation, he said it was better than new construction today and that whoever built the house did an excellent job. (Five generations ago, the original owner built the house with timber and stone from the farm.) He told us that the floors could be dropped for pouring concrete flooring, and with the addition of headers, the walls could be moved. He will return in a week to do some figuring to let us know the estimated cost of materials and the labor that his men will do—with our boys doing most of the work.

-Since the weather is ready to drop into the teens, Josiah put all the fowl back into the chicken house and surrounding yard.

-Jon and a friend continue to run more electric in the barn for more lights. I am so thankful for Henry, who drives two hours to get here each evening after work and on Saturdays, just to help us out! Since most barn fires are caused by rodents chewing through electrical wiring, Jon and his friend are encasing the wiring in pipe.

-Increased our insurance on the old barn, as our contractor told us that it would cost nearly $100,000 to rebuild.

-The plumber returned to install a natural water softener on the dairy barn to keep our equipment from getting corroded. Although the highly-concentrated minerals are tough on things like dishwashers and washing machines, they are so healthy for our family and animals. While he was there, we had him look at the old farmhouse and consider the plumbing he would be doing. After he heard that the boys would be gutting the building, adding headers, moving walls, tearing the concrete out on the back porch, filling in the cellar, and then replacing the roof, he strongly encouraged us to consider building instead of remodeling. We appreciated his thoughtful consideration. It confirmed our friend, Owen Brown’s concerns, as well.

-The boys continue to work on the electric in the shed.

-Sonia selected and ordered our garden seeds.

-Jon and Josiah hung our new windows in the chicken house. To maintain the integrity of the wonderful old building, we had a local woodworker construct the windows for the wide openings on either side of the main door.

-Even though Sonia has been resting as the doctor ordered, she continues to take care of phone calls, emails, FCM activities, ordering and returning winter clothing for each of us, and taking care of all our bookwork. Yesterday was the first day she has worked on her feet all day, making Christmas goodies for the bank, hardware, and feed store owners and workers who have been so kind and helpful to our family and also for some of our friends and neighbors. It was too much for her, as she is back in bed today feeling very poorly.

-Josiah continues to pull logs out of our woods for Jedidiah to saw into boards for construction of our barn’s addition.

-Josiah continues to split wood each evening for the fireplace that heats most of our home.

-A dairyman hauled off our Jersey bull for breeding his milk cows. He was a handsome fellow and had been quite docile for a long time, but just recently began lowering his head and bellowing at the boys. We have heard from many farmers (including the one who just picked up Sy) that Jersey bulls typically become aggressively dangerous. It was a bittersweet moment. We received much less for him than his purchase price, as the value of cattle has really dropped. However, this dairyman has been in the business for many years and has a lot of milk cows, so hopefully he will get many nice calves out of him before he goes to the sale barn.

-Jedidiah spent Christmas Day in the barn with a calf that was sick with fever. It was so weak and had so much trouble breathing that Jedidiah resuscitated it seven times. Jon picked up antibiotics. That night, the calf finally was able to breathe easier and nurse.

-After several afternoons of washing the ceiling, walls, windows, doors, and flooring of the dairy barn, I now have it squeaky clean.

-The plumber just installed our sink, icemaker, and dishwasher.

-For Christmas, Jon surprised me with a large gift bag filled with soft washcloths trimmed in “Jersey Downs.” The Obenhaus family’s embroidery was superb! We will enjoy using the beautiful signature cloths, while the cows will appreciate the soft texture on their udders.

 –After Owen Brown saw Bluebell’s otherwise healthy looking calf, he suggested we have the vet out to ascertain if the calf could possibly have an obstruction.

-Our friends surprised us by bringing their ram to our farm. I had admired their ram last time we visited them on their farm. My friend, Rose, gave him to me as a Christmas present. I am thrilled, as he is a beautiful Katahdin/Dorper cross that should produce lovely lambs by next May. He immediately assimilated with our flock.

-The vet told us that it would cost hundreds of dollars to have a scope placed down the calf’s throat. We would pay that if it could save this healthy calf, but we need to take her to Columbia to have it done and that is out of the question. Instead, the vet gave us some steroids to see if that decreases any inflammation that might be restricting the calf’s breathing as she labors for each breath.

-Friends, neighbors, and workmen continue to drop by to see our dairy.

-Jon is still working on installing 220 volt wiring for our commercial dishwasher.

-Sonia suggested that the boys take January off to read, play games, and rest. I gently explained to her the impossibility of that proposal with all we had to do, but that we would work towards them taking off three days a week. On the farm, taking off does not mean the whole day, as all the animals still need to be fed and watered, moved, taken out, brought in, and bedded down. Cows still need to be milked, eggs collected, and a host of other daily responsibilities. In farm talk it really means working only 5-6 hours instead of 14-16 hours a day. So far it has not worked out at all, but we will keep trying.

-A local young man came out to repair our sawmill.

-Jedidiah is now cutting boards again for our barn’s addition.

-The vet has prescribed one more drug to see if it helps our lovely calf. We are praying that God will heal this darling calf.

-After investigating items for our dairy barn, the children and I came home with shelving units for our storage closet, pantry, and cooler; a washing machine for our udder cloths; and bi-fold doors for our closet. The dairy barn will soon be complete.

-Our ten gilts continue to knock Josiah down as they run to the trough for goodies, which gives a whole new meaning to “Don’t be a pig at the table.” They don’t mean to hurt him. When he falls, they jump back in utter shock, sniff him to see if he is hurt, and then nudge him to get up, as they truly enjoy his care and daily scratchings. With that said, ten 200-plus pound gilts coming at you at breakneck speed (well, breakneck for fat little piggies) is no laughing matter, prompting us to consider finding a different approach to feeding.

-After draining the diesel fuel from the sawmill, Jedidiah realized that one of our cows had gotten into the fuel. To the vet’s office and back, he is now administering a large dose of charcoal in hopes of saving the cow. A painful lesson, indeed! We are so attached to all of our animals; I wonder if we will ever make it through the stress, pain, and suffering that comes with caring for so many.

-Josiah is ill today. Sonia is still not able to do hard labor on the farm because of her accident, while I am diligently working on TNPLH’s new website and the January newsletter. Therefore, Jedidiah is putting up the rafters for the barn’s addition by himself.

-Our little calf is running a fever again and struggling for every breath. Our milk lady said that it has been a very hard year on calves, especially a lot of upper respiratory problems. Jedidiah dropped by to pick up some Colloidal silver that we have begun administering, along with Vitamin C.

-The boys have been saving all of our feedbags to refill at a co-op where we hope to begin purchasing organic feed. I began gathering them up, folding them into smaller packages, and shoving them into the appropriate bag.

-The white Hereford that has eye cancer (vet says white faced cows are more prone to this) is not doing very well. The ear on the side of the cancer now droops all the time. Her calf is only one month old. We are watching to make certain the calf is getting her fair share of milk and praying that Buttercup lives long enough to give her offspring a good start. It is so hard to see her ailing. She came with the farm and has always come up to us for petting and scratching. I don’t understand why God continues to take my favorite animals.

-One of our Anatolian Pyrenees slid off the hay bale she was using for a bed. With her backside down and feet straight up in the air, she became wedged between the bale and fence. I am so thankful I saw it so Jedidiah could get her out of such a tight spot.

 

 

THE JOY OF COUNTRY LIVING

 

Mom, Just Say NO! Practice, N-O!

 

It began as all other days. I bounced out of bed, well maybe more like a roll, and opened my drapes to a beautifully clear, crisp November day. I squealed with delight—yes, really! I have done this since we have moved here. I still sometimes think I am living in a dream and am so excited every morning when I realize that it is not a dream that I finally live in the country.

                                                                                                       

Anyway, after getting dressed I gazed at my list of tasks that lay on my bedside table. A list like all other lists that grows and grows at night because I continually turn on the light and add more and more jobs to it before I slip off to sleep. It is amazing to me how many things I can think of in those last few minutes of consciousness right before my eyes close for the last time, and that is after I have made out a fairly extensive list before I actually go to bed.

 

Coming down the stairs, I heard the phone ring and then a voice on our answering machine said, “Candy, are you there?” It was my milk lady, calling to see if I would like to accompany her to a friend’s farm that had Jersey heifers for sale. I was not looking for another Jersey at the time, but my friend assured me that when Jerseys come up for sale, they need to be grabbed up because Jersey heifers are hard to find. Well, I love my friend and trust in the vast wisdom she has accumulated over the many years of milking, so I quickly gathered my jacket, checkbook, purse, and keys and ran out the door. My daughter followed fast after me to advise me. “Now, Mom,” she said, “Just say no! Practice, Mom, N-O!”

 

Now why would she do that, I wondered? Besides being endowed with a strong inner resolve, my father further solidified my naturally resolute spirit into one of significant girth. One of the side benefits of this is that I am not an impulse buyer. Furthermore, I knew that we were not looking for more cows at present, realized that we did not have a dairy barn yet, not even a foundation for a dairy barn, and that our three dairy cows were serving us quite well. So I responded, “No, I know.” Then added, “But Sonia, I was just informed that heifers don’t come along every day. In fact, according to Mary, they rarely come along at all. We need to prepare for the future of our dairy herd, don’t you think?”

 

Her “Mom!” that followed said it all.

 

Okay, maybe when it comes to purchasing animals for the farm, I have displayed a less than stalwart reason, at least to some members’ point of view—well maybe most, if not all the other members of the family. What can I say? I love the farm! I love animals! I love working! I love new businesses! Truly exhilarating, that is what it is! To make new acquisitions for the farm’s future businesses is just exhilarating. I believe that is why my farm girlfriends are constantly purchasing and trading animals.

 

You cannot really say that I don’t have any willpower. I think it is more that I realize what can be done with enough resources at hand. Just think how much milk we could collect with more cows. Besides, I come by it naturally. Fresh cream runs through my veins, so to speak, as my grandfather had a large dairy, and my parents owned land that had been a dairy at one time. Written in the stars, one would think!

 

Taking a deep breath, though, I tried to calm my exuberance, in accordance with the counsel given by my “mini-me,” who on occasion differs in opinion, which I never fully understand, but love her nonetheless.

 

“Yes, Sonia, N-O. I get it.” In truth, though, I must admit, that as I drove away from home, although my mouth was practicing “No,” my heart was telling me it was going to be a great day for acquisitions. Up and down the rolling hills I drove thanking God for the gorgeous countryside and for Jersey heifers, of all things.

 

Could this be equated with “the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak” when it comes to animals? On second thought, not really, because in my case, the spirit and flesh work together in harmony to give all creatures, both great and small, a wonderful home with us.

 

When I arrived at my friend’s farm, she and her husband were waiting to take off on a purchasing trip with trailer in tow. A trailer, I might add, that could hold several heifers. Off we went, east of town, up and down hills, around curves, on this road and that road and then another. I knew I could never find this place again even if I really wanted to. It would not have been any more difficult if they had blindfolded me, so it was good that we had a large enough trailer for the “To Go” milkshakes on hooves.

 

It was a lovely day for enjoying the scenery of such exceptionally beautiful spacious farms. Sprawling over gently rolling hills, these pleasant farms were dotted with herds of stately cattle and punctuated with well-situated ponds. On one particularly steep tree-crested knoll, we turned onto Jersey Lane, a fitting passage for a milking operation that milked over 50 cows, morning and night.

 

Run by only two people, a husband and wife around our age, no children, just them, just two—this 150-acre farm was immaculate. Over 100 cattle and that many sheep, or so it seemed to me, with chickens, dogs, and cats meandering around all the outbuildings, this place was as neat as a pin and obviously very productive. I was impressed! I found out later that the husband had grown up on a dairy farm, while the wife had always dreamed of marrying a dairyman, and so she did. From that point forward, they labored together to bring their life’s dream to fruition.

 

Instead of a heifer, my friend needed a cow that was ready to milk, so we began our purchasing trip by walking in amongst the massive herd of beautiful Jerseys. After looking the cows over, she selected Rhonda. Then we were driven up to the pasture that contained the heifers. I was asked if I wanted a heifer. Well, I wanted one. I always want animals. And now that I have a farm, it just seemed natural to add another one. But my goodness, I did not know what I was looking for other than pretty, so I asked my friend to make suggestions.

 

I considered and considered until the owners said that they were busy and needed to get back to work, so I had better make up my mind. It was between two girls: one all strawberry red, the other tan and black. Mary had emphasized the red one for me. Yes, I thought I ought to take her, but I had never seen a tan and black Jersey. The couple pushed again, rather rudely I thought at the time, but then there were only two of them to take care of all the farm chores.

 

How could I possibly pick one on such short notice, I thought. When it came to choosing team players, friends, animals, and even furniture, as a little girl, I always agonized over the feelings of those left behind. Even when my parents went shopping for furniture, if they made negative comments about one piece of furniture over the others, I would go back and pat those left behind, and tell them that they were pretty, too. Ridiculous, but true!

 

This is why my principal, kindergarten, first and second grade teachers met with my parents to tell them that although I was an excellent student, I spent most of my time in class, and on the playground, helping the impoverished children. I helped them with their schoolwork, wiped their runny noses, tied their shoes, encouraged their efforts, and hugged them all the time. To reach my potential, the staff strongly encouraged my parents to move me to a better school district where there would be fewer poor and needy children to distract my attention away from academic pursuits. We promptly moved that summer, but it did not keep me from continuing this pattern of compassion that ran deep within my soul.

 

After realizing the extraordinary compassion and love I exhibited for people of all ages, when I entered my teens, my pastor suggested I work for the deaf at the school for the deaf, the elderly in nursing homes, and at the local orphanage. Little did he realize how inept I was for any of these positions, as my feelings for each student, resident, and orphan created such a wellspring of emotions that I ended up crying for those who had no homes.

 

Now you know why I cry in grocery stores when I hear a baby crying or a mother speaking rudely to her child, and why pounds are out of the question, for I could never choose just one cat or dog over all the others needing families, too.

 

Being such a hopeless case, how in the world was I going to choose one heifer over the next? Resolving the dilemma, I heard myself say, “I will take them both.” The couple seemed surprised, and so did my friend. I was surprised at their surprise. After all the owners had them for sale, and my friend had said I better grab up the heifers while they were available. Heifers—plural—meaning more than one. What was so surprising about my taking two?

 

On the way home I was wondering how the rest of the family would take another unexpected acquisition. Oops, I mean two acquisitions. Yet I was spending my own money, so it wasn’t as if I was taking food out of my children’s mouths, nor was I spending my husband’s retirement. Nonetheless, fear and trepidation could have filled my soul, at this point, as I reflected on our bookkeeper’s last words of Just say “NO,” Mom along with Jon’s continual consternation over all our acquisitions and new businesses because we were moving way too fast for him.

 

Instead I felt nothing but euphoria. Two new heifers! Not exactly like bringing twins home from the hospital, but similar in many ways, mostly in the way I felt just then. When you get past childbearing age, animals do, in some sense, fill the void from the lack of little ones running around. See, I understand women who carry around those little dogs in their purses. Needless to say, I traveled home with the overwhelming feeling of great joy that comes with a double blessing.

 

While on the road, Sonia called me on the cell phone.

 

“Mom, how did you do?” she inquired.

 

“Great,” I said.

 

“Did you say no?” she probed.

 

“No, not exactly,” I responded.

 

Incredulous, she asked, “You bought another cow?”

 

“No,” I said, “I bought two.”

 

Silence followed, but in her heart, she knew that would be the outcome. And now, on the other side of that day, Sonia sees the wisdom of my forethought in preparing for her future.

 

All visionaries have their plans met with some hesitation, reluctance, and resistance, but in the end, when all works out, others see the wisdom in the move that seemed impulsive, risky, or bold at the time.

 

A Year Later

 

A year later, I was the one calling the couple to see if they were ready to sell some Jersey heifers. They were, and we made a date. It happened that a friend from St. Louis was down for some relaxation, so she came along. Up and down the hills we went, around the bend, to the left and to the right, laughing at all the funny stories each of us was conveying. This time, though, the trip was not as mysteriously confusing as the first, as we had traveled this labyrinth of country roads on several other occasions since my first expedition to the land of Jerseys. When we finally arrived at that impeccably kept farm, we dug in and helped the couple milk. After milking, we helped them move cows, and then went out into the field with the heifers.

 

While I was busy looking for my pad of paper and pen, the owner was calling in the heifers. When I turned around, the herd was inquisitively looking at us as we were looking at them.

 

Jedidiah called out “245.”

 

Sonia said, “I really like 244 and 257.”

 

Josiah said, “248 and 253 look good.”

 

Jon said, “Have you considered 250 and 254?”

 

They were talking back and forth about those particular girls as they inspected them for confirmation, udder, and overall disposition—an eye we had acquired with more experience.

 

Calling out those numbers again, “244, 245, 248, 250, 253, 254, 257,” they asked, “Mom, did you get those?”

 

“Uh, huh,” I said. “244, 245, 248, 250, 253, 254, and 257. Is that right?”

 

“Yes,” they responded.

 

As I put the notebook back into my purse, I could hear the others talk about the land, the newly planted grasses, and their rotational grazing. Then we looked at their pasture of Sudan grass, the bulls they had pulled out for breeding, and their old barn—Jim’s grandmother’s barn. We talked about the price of kelp and how we thought we could get it cheaper for them. Commented on how the barn cats looked like they were wearing tuxedos. Walked up into the loft to see their hay storage. Praised Jim for his lovely chicken tractors. And then asked Rose to show us the beautiful new ram she just purchased.

 

After commenting on the lovely herd, Jim kiddingly asked Rose if she was going to put up the ram for the night.

 

She said she could.

 

Incredulous, he asked, “You are going to get in with that ram, Rose?”

 

For we all knew that Rose never got in with her ram, or in any area that contained rams or bulls. A wise habit that many farmers have impressed upon us.

 

She said she was just going to pray that God would get him in the pen so she could close it in the morning. We all laughed and then Rose said we better go if we wanted to make it to the fish fry in time. Wow, none of us knew how late it had gotten, so off we went to enjoy a meal together.

 

Did you notice that I said nothing about the Jersey heifers? I was just the silent recorder of “244, 245, 248, 250, 253, 254, and 257.” Just in case you did not take into account the total of heifers my family picked, let me tell you that they picked out seven heifers. Seven! Not one, or even two, but seven. I tell you, it is contagious!

 

Who needs birthdays or Christmas with farm animals coming and coming! Ah, country living is the life for me!

 

 

THE DISMANTLING and RESTORING OF AMERICA Every hour our government spends 200 million dollars it does not have!

 

Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it on to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free. –President Ronald Reagan, 1961

 

Trump Convinces Carrier Air Conditioners to Stay in America

http://www.trump-conservative.com/news/great-again-trump-convinces-carrier-air-conditioners-to-stay-in-america/

 

 

Carol Weiland shares: This is What You Get

by Everett Piper, President Oklahoma Wesleyan University

November 14, 2016

As the university president who wrote the op-ed “This is Not a Day Care, It’s a University” that went viral a few months ago, I was asked to comment on the post-election protests now sweeping our college campuses. More specifically, I was asked to explain the Millennial Generation’s cry for “safe spaces,” their demands for “trigger warnings,” their repudiation of “micro-aggressions,” and now even their insistence that the results of this country’s presidential election be reversed, because they, our privileged progeny, don’t like it.

 

My response in brief: Why would you expect anything different? This is what you get when you send your kids off to colleges and universities that teach politically correct pabulum rather than the time-tested truths of a free people and civil society. This is what you get when you entrust your sons and daughters to sit under the tutelage of faculty who proudly pan a Judeo-Christian ethic and praise its antithesis. This is what you get after years of teaching our next generation “it doesn’t matter what you believe as long as it works for you.” This is what you get when you tell our youth that there is a “moral equivalency” between America and its enemies, and imply our nation is bad and the rest of the world is right to hate us.

 

This is what you get after years of instructing our students to laugh at those who warn of the loss of individual freedom and the rise of government largesse. This is what you get after instructing an entire generation that Marxism has its merits and that liberation theology is the only “good religion,” that socialism is better than free enterprise and that capitalism is the cause of crime. This is what you get when you foment class resentment and racial animus. This is what you get when you diminish excellence while extolling entitlement.

 

This is what you get when you trust your sons and daughters to professors who tell them their pastors and priests are stupid and that it’s more important to learn how to use a condom than it is to obey God’s commandments. This is what you get when you spend tens of thousands of dollars a year to enroll your kids in institutions that vaunt moral nihilism while vilifying their parents’ morals. In 1948, Richard Weaver told us in his seminal publication that Ideas Have Consequences. A few short years earlier, Hitler said, “Let me control the textbooks and I will control the State.” Huxley and Orwell followed and warned of dystopias where education would be used as a means to total power and total control. Education does matter. Ideas do have consequences and the lousy ideas we have been teaching in our universities for the past several decades are bearing themselves out daily before our eyes. Why are we surprised by what we see in today’s news? When colleges lose their conscience, kids lose their character, and culture loses its soul. Why did you expect anything different? This is what you get.

 

 

Soros Bands with Donors to Resist Trump, “Take Back Power”

http://www.politico.com/story/2016/11/democrats-soros-trump-231313

 

 

Destroying America From Inside the Classroom by Tom DeWeese http://deweesereport.com/2010/02/22/destroying-america-from-inside-the-classroom/?mc_cid=43454c28a3&mc_eid=c997d162a8

 

 

EPA Chief Urges Staff to Finish Obama’s Agenda Before Trump Takes Over

The head of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) urged employees to finish out the last weeks of the Obama administration “running” to finish implementing what they can of the president’s environmental agenda. “As I’ve mentioned to you before, we’re running — not walking — through the finish line of President Obama’s presidency,” ­–EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy

 

 

Trans-Pacific Partnership: A Trojan Horse for Obama’s Climate Change Agenda

Another venue for destroying American free-trade is the TPP. In early November, the Republicans were bragging that they had the votes to help Obama push it through. The big questions now are, did they hear the message from the people and are they going to listen? If so, they will back off a vote for the TPP, and maybe live (politically) to see another election.

 

The TPP’s Commission trumps Congress.

 

“And what exactly is the TPP’s Commission? It is modeled after the European Commission, an unaccountable and unelected body that has spewed a torrent of regulations and mandates on the EU’s struggling economies. Once the TPP goes into force, its Commission will have the power to modify or amend the trade agreement “or take such other action that the Parties may agree…” Should any disputes arise over a signatory’s compliance with the TPP, they will be handled by “Arbitration Tribunals,” which will have the power to hand down multi-billion dollar judgments against any member government that violates its decisions. In this way, the TPP’s Commission and its Arbitration Tribunals can punish the U.S or any other signatory for violating the terms of the trade pact, including failure to comply with the Paris climate agreement.”

http://deweesereport.com/2016/11/14/the-big-picture-recent-globalist-actions-with-huge-implications-for-a-free-america/?mc_cid=43454c28a3&mc_eid=c997d162a8

 

 


 

 
December 14th, 2016 PDF Print E-mail
Newsletter

Family Covenant Ministries(formerly Christian Home Educators Fellowship) Faithfully honoring God, equipping generations, and serving the homeschooling community for the past 32 years!

www.FamilyCovenantMinistries.com

 

THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME December 2016 Information

http://www.theresnoplacelikehome-summers.com/

 

Our Family’s Vision and Mission

http://www.theresnoplacelikehome-summers.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=section&layout=blog&id=4&Itemid=1

 

Family Covenant Ministries (formerly CHEF) Information and Activities

 

1.  FCM Events

     a.  FCM Christmas Contra Dance, Friday, January 6

     b.  FCM Annual Ice Skating, Saturday, January 21

     c.  FCM Skiing at Hidden Valley, Friday, February 3

     d.  FCM 33rd Annual Graduation Meetings, Thursday, February 16 and Thursday, March 16

     e.  FCM 19th Annual Heart to Heart Tea, Thursday, March 16

     f.  FCM Purina Farms Field Trip

2.  FCM Notes

     a.  Letter to Missouri Public Service Commission

     b.  Great Lesson for Your Children

     c.  A Message from Past FCM Speaker Marshall Foster

3.  Needs and Services-A Letter from Ruth Smith, President of Pilgrim Institute

4.  Special Opportunities-Raging Rivers

 

There’s No Place Like Home Articles

 

1.  Heart to Heart-Sweet Dreams

2.  Casting a Vision for Multigenerational Family Business-Riedel Glass Since 1756

3.  Delightful Surprises

     a.  Flannel Sheets

     b.  Maple Leaf Candy

     c.  Wool Socks

4.  In the Library-Lucy and Tom’s Christmas

5.  Summers on the Farm

6.  The Joy of Country Living-Every Day is Christmas for Our Animals

7.  Dismantling America

     a.  Ten Skills of Leadership-Phyllis Schlafly

     b.  Coca-Cola

 

If you get a blank email from us ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it '; document.write( '' ); document.write( addy_text54380 ); document.write( '<\/a>' ); //--> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) on your cell phone, please try looking at the email from your computer instead.

 

FCM EVENTS

 

FCM Christmas Contra Dance, Friday, January 6, 7:00 p.m. at the beautiful Salem United Methodist Church, 1200 S. Lindbergh Blvd. St. Louis, MO 63131.Conveniently located on the northeast corner of Hwy 40/64 on Lindbergh Blvd., a little north of Frontenac Plaza. Enter through back entrance. Our family recently attended a contra dance and thought this would be fun for a change. Contra dancing is much easier than English Country Dancing, something between English Country Dancing and Square Dancing.No prior dance experience is required. Please bring a two-liter bottle of ginger ale and a finger food to share.

 

Preregistration cost is $6 per person; $42 maximum per family; Children 2 and under free. Cost at the door: $7 per person; $49 maximum per family. You may either pay online or mail your check payable to FCM, c/o Sonia Summers, P.O. Box 586, Fredericktown, MO 63645. Deadline to register is Wednesday, January 4. If you are unable to pay online, or experience any difficulties, please contact us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call 314-920-6135.

 

To pay online, use this link and choose Christmas Contra Dance by clicking on the arrow on the Event List drop-down menu.

https://www.familycovenantministries.com/index.php?option=com_rsform&formId=12

 

Under Reservation, make sure the Ticket Type “Family” is selected if more than one person is coming. Then select the appropriate “Number of Attendees” in your family.

 

Please Note: Young people’s behavior to one another should be that of brothers and sisters in Christ. No flirting, pairing off, or loitering outside the building. 

 

Please dress modestly. Parents, we realize how difficult it is these days to find modest apparel for daughters; however, we ask that you make sure that your daughters wear knee length or longer dresses and modest necklines. No off the shoulder dresses or spaghetti straps allowed. If you invite someone else who has never attended, please make certain that they understand our godly standards.

 

 

FCM Annual Ice Skating, Saturday, January 21, PLEASE NOTEthe change in time: 2:00-5:00 p.m. at the outdoor ice rink at Shaw Park, 217 S. Brentwood Blvd., Clayton, MO 63105. Preregistration cost is $5.50 per skater (includes skate rental, hot chocolate, and paper goods); $6.50 per skater at the door. You may either pay online or mail your check payable to FCM, c/o Sonia Summers, P.O. Box 586, Fredericktown, MO 63645 by January 16. If you are unable to pay online, or experience any difficulties, please contact us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call 314-920-6135.

 

To pay online, use this link and choose Annual Ice Skating by clicking on the arrow on the Event List drop-down menu.

https://familycovenantministries.com/index.php?option=com_rsform&formId=12

 

Under Reservation, make sure the Ticket Type “Family” is selected if more than one person is coming. Then select the appropriate “Number of Attendees” in your family.

 

To get this deal, we must pay in advance, so please pay online or send your check in by the deadline. However, if you are able to come at the last minute, we will still be able to accommodate your family, but it will cost $1 more per skater. Do not pay at the ticket window; pay us. Just make certain that the ticket window knows that you are with the FCM (CHEF) group. This outdoor rink is a beautiful place to skate. Bring a finger food or plate of cookies to share, as we will set up hot chocolate in the warmed seating area just off the rink.

 

For those of you who would like to join us following Ice Skating, we will be having a light dinner at Steak ‘n Shake, 1525 S. Kirkwood Road, St. Louis, MO 63127, just south of Hwy 44.

 

 

FCM Skiing at Hidden Valley Ski Resort, Friday, February 3, 4:00 p.m.-1:00 a.m. at 17409 Hidden Valley Drive, Wildwood, MO 63025. Enjoy the best outdoor wintertime sport at a fabulous price. Join us for an Adult moonlight skiing session.

 

Snow Pass (Lift Ticket) and Ski/Snowboard Equipment Rental

Group rate for ages 13 and above: $53.25 per person

Group rate for ages 7-12: $44.75 per person

[Regular price is $71]

Ski Lesson (Ages 8 and above): Only $5.38

Snowboard Lesson (Ages 8 and above): Only $16.14

Lessons begin promptly at 5:00 and 7:00 p.m.

 

Send in your check by January 28 payable to FCM, c/o Josiah Summers, P.O. Box 586, Fredericktown, MO 63645.

 

There is a warm viewing area and food available. Call Josiah with any questions at 314-920-6135. We look forward to seeing you there.

 

 

FCM 33rd Annual Graduation If you have a graduate, please email your graduate’s name, parents’ names, address, phone, and email address to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Shortly after we receive your information, we will email our Welcome packet. Our meetings will be held on Thursday, February 16 and Thursday, March 16 from 1:00-3:00 p.m. at the beautifulSalem United Methodist Church, 1200 S. Lindbergh Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63131. Conveniently located on the northeast corner of Hwy 40/64 on Lindbergh Blvd., a little north of Frontenac Plaza. To give you an idea of the focus of our graduation you may read the godly and inspiring charge, “Destined to Make a Difference,” which was presented by Bob Wells in 2010 by going to http://www.familycovenantministries.com/. Click on “Services” and scroll to the bottom of the page.

 

 

FCM 19th Annual Heart to Heart Mother/Daughter Tea (Mothers without Daughters are Welcome!), Thursday, March 16,7:00-10:00 p.m. at the Hawken House Hearth Room, 1155 S. Rock Hill Road, St. Louis, MO 63119. Preregistration cost is $11 per person; $12 per person at the door. Teaching topic will be announced shortly. Mothers without daughters are welcome to come. Come and enjoy great fellowship, wonderful teachings, tea and delectable pastries with other homeschooling moms. You may either pay online or mail your check payable to FCM, c/o Sonia Summers, PO Box 586, Fredericktown, MO by March 14 to reserve your place. If you are unable to pay online, or experience any difficulties, please contact us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call 314-920-6135.

 

To pay online, use this link and choose 19th Annual Heart to Heart Mother/Daughter Tea by clicking on the arrow on the Event List drop-down menu.

https://familycovenantministries.com/index.php?option=com_rsform&formId=12

 

Under Reservation, make sure the Ticket Type “Family” is selected if more than one person is coming. Then select the appropriate “Number of Attendees” in your family.

 

Directions:If you take Hwy. 270 south, exit at Big Bend Road. Go east on Big Bend approximately 4 miles to S. Rock Hill Road. Go right on Rock Hill for 2 blocks. The house is just past Hawken Condominiums on the right. Barn is on right in back of Hawken House. There is no Big Bend exit if you are going north on Hwy. 270. Therefore, if you take Hwy. 270 north, go east on Hwy. 44. Exit at Big Bend Road and go east for approximately 1.5 miles to S. Rock Hill Road. Then follow above directions.

 

 

FCM Field Trip to Purina Farms in April or May Look for details in upcoming newsletters.

 

 

FCM

 

Here is our response to Matt and Tina Reichert’s request for assistance in stopping Grain Belt Express transmission lines from obtaining eminent domain on Missouri landowners’ acreage.

 

Jon and Candy Summers

PO Box 586

Fredericktown, MO 63645

 

November 30, 2016

 

The Missouri Public Service Commission

Consumer Services

200 Madison Street

PO Box 360

Jefferson City, MO 65102

 

Dear Commissioners,

 

As a Missouri resident and landowner, we wish to express our concerns in regards to case number EA-2016-0358, relating to the application for a Certificate of Convenience and Necessity in Missouri submitted by Grain Belt Express.

 

First and foremost, granting the power of Eminent Domain to a private company violates the very purpose of Eminent Domain and sets a precedent for future violations, consequently jeopardizing the security American citizens enjoy in their sacred right to own and keep property. This inherent right to privately own property is the foundation of our liberties. In the Declaration of Colonial Rights, the First Continental Congress explicitly stated that, “[Americans] are entitled to life, liberty, and property, and they have never ceded to any sovereign power … a right to dispose of either without their consent.”

 

Furthermore, our Constitution’s Third, Fourth and Fifth Amendments protect private property, with the Fifth Amendment protecting Americans from unreasonable government seizure of private property stating that “No person shall be deprived of…property, without due process of law.”

 

Throughout our country’s history, the government’s power to exercise eminent domain has been limited by very specific confines because our Founders understood man’s nature to take what is not his, except when required for the public good.

 

Is this for the public good? Possessing the second largest number of farms in the country, Missouri remains important agriculturally because of our valuable farmland, making Missouri a leading state in beef cattle, hogs, turkeys, soybeans, rice, dairy, and wine. With potentially impacting hundreds of Missouri landowners, most of whom are farmers, it seems particularly unwise to give public utility status to Grain Belt Express because of the negative economic impact this could have on our state.

 

Since the purpose of government is to protect its citizens, and since approval would significantly reduce the value of the private property, limit the use of the property, reduce farm productivity, threaten the livelihood of these landowners, while also adversely affecting the health of both the landowners and their animals, we are asking that you deny Grain Belt’s third application, for the same reasons you denied it the first time, namely that the project was not a necessity for our state and that the burden placed on the landowners far outweighed the benefit to the grid or its rate payers.

 

Thank you for your consideration.

 

Sincerely, Jon and Candy Summers

 

 

Great Lesson for Your Children: While rereading the Christmas letter I wrote to family and friends last year, I thought it would make a great lesson for your children. Remember we must cast this vision for our children and continually strengthen that vision by reading God’s Word and other godly writings.

 

Dear Families,

 

Though it seems that Christians are losing on every front, we must not despair as if Christ is not on the throne and reigns not over all His creatures. We must remember His Word—one of total victory—and the reality of His Word fulfilled throughout the history of the world that God indeed is Lord of heaven and earth.

 

J.C. Ryle states: The overruling providence of God appears in this simple fact. He orders all things in heaven and earth. He turns the hearts of kings wherever He will. He overruled the time when Augustus decreed the taxing. He directed the enforcement of the decree in such a way, that Mary must be at Bethlehem when ‘the time came for the baby to be born.’ Little did the haughty Roman emperor, and his officer Cyrenius (Quirinius), think that they were only instruments in the hand of the God of Israel, and were only carrying out the eternal purposes of the King of kings. Little did they think that they were helping to lay the foundation of a kingdom, before which the empires of this world would all go down one day, and Roman idolatry pass away. –The Cripplegate: “God is the Lord of History” Micah 5:2; Luke 2:1-14; 2 Samuel 7:12,13; Luke 1:30-33; 1 Samuel 16:1-5,13; Romans 1:1-7; Isaiah 46:10

 

The heart of a believer should take comfort in the recollection of God’s providential government of the world. A true Christian should never be greatly moved or disturbed by the conduct of the rulers of the earth. He should see with the eye of faith a hand overruling all that they do to the praise and glory of God. He should regard every king and potentate—an Augustus, a Cyrenius, a Darius, a Cyrus, a Sennacherib—as a creature who, with all his power, can do nothing but what God allows, and nothing which is not carrying out God’s will. And when the rulers of this world ‘set themselves against the Lord’ he should take comfort in the words of Solomon, ‘There is one higher than they.’(Eccles.5:8). –Expository Thoughts on Luke, vol. 1, pp. 39,40

 

Unlike the heathen who believed that the times and seasons were controlled by chance, God’s people knew that God controlled the times, seasons, and vicissitudes of states. The Westminster Confession of Faith, Chapter 3, Article 1 clearly expresses this belief when it states: ‘God, from all eternity, did, by the most wise and holy counsel of his own will, freely, and unchangeably ordain whatsoever comes to pass…’ (Eph. 1:11; Rom. 11:33; Heb. 6:17; Rom. 9:15,18).

 

Chapter 5, Article 1 tells us,‘God, the great Creator of all things, doth uphold, direct, dispose, and govern all creatures, actions, and things, from the greatest even to the least, by this most wise and holy providence, according to his infallible foreknowledge, and the free and immutable counsel of his own will, to the praise of the glory of his wisdom, power, justice, goodness, and mercy.’ (Hebrews 1:3; Daniel 4:34; Ps. 135:6; Acts 17:25,26,28; Job chapters 38-41; Matthew 10:29-31; Proverbs 15:3; Ps. 104:24; Ps. 145:17; Acts 15:18; Ps. 94:8-11; Eph. 1:11; ps. 33:10,11; Isa. 63:14; Eph. 3:10; Rom. 9:17; Gen. 45:7; Ps. 145:7.)

 

Psalm 33:11 “The counsel of the LORD stands forever, the plans of His heart from generation to generation.” Revelation 1:5; Colossians 1:13-20; Ephesians 3:9; Daniel 2:121,22; Daniel 4:30-35 Ecclesiastes 3:1; Acts 1:6,7; Job 12:13-25; Psalm 75:2-7; 1 Samuel 2:6-10; Jeremiahs 27:5; 1 Kings 3:11,12 James 1:5; Proverbs 8:1-36; 2 Corinthians 10:4,5

 

Are we living as if the world is against us or as us against the world? This question may seem rather insignificant, but upon further reflection, sheds light upon our understanding of scripture. Either we believe in an impotent God who has failed miserably in accomplishing His eternal purpose or the omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent Almighty who reigns over heaven and earth.

 

Consider that Athanasius, the great Church Father of the fourth century, lived through one of the most severe persecutions the world had ever seen, the Emperor Diocletian’s all-out attempt to stamp out the Christian faith. Later, Athanasius had to stand practically alone for 40 years in his defense of the doctrine of the Trinity against rampant heresy, being exiled by the government on five occasions and sometimes in peril for his life. In fact, his story gave birth to a proverb: Athanasius contra mundum (Athanasius against the world). Yet he never lost sight of the basic fact of world history, that the Word had become flesh, conquering the devil, redeeming mankind, flooding the world with Light, which the darkness could not overcome.

 

He adhered to a doctrine of hope, which until just recently was held by Christians throughout Christendom. His classic book On the Incarnation of the Word of God reveals this doctrinal truth: “Since the Savior came to dwell in our midst, not only does idolatry no longer increase, but is getting less and gradually ceasing to be. Similarly, not only does the wisdom of the Greeks no longer make any progress, but that which used to be is disappearing. And demons, so far from continuing to impose on people by their deceits and oracle-givings and sorceries, are routed by the sign of the cross if they so much as try. On the other hand, while idolatry and everything else that opposes the faith of Christ is daily dwindling and weakening and falling, the Savior’s teaching is increasing everywhere! Worship, then, the Savior ‘Who is above all’ and mighty, even God the Word, and condemn those who are being defeated and made to disappear by Him. When the sun has come, darkness prevails no longer; any of it that may be left anywhere is driven away. So also, now that the Divine epiphany of the Word of God has taken place, the darkness of idols prevails no more, and all parts of the world in every direction are enlightened by His teaching.”

 

Let’s look at exploration. Before he began his expeditions, Columbus crammed his journals with quotations from Isaiah and other Biblical writers, in which he detailed the numerous prophecies that the Great Commission to disciple all nations of the world would be successful (see, for example, Isa.2:2-5; 9:2-7; 11:1-10; 32:15-17; 40:4-11; 42:1-12; 49:1-26; 56:3-8; 60:1-22; 61:1-11; 62:1-12; 65:1-25; 66:1-24). He figured that if the Indies were to be converted, a sea route would be a much more efficient way to bring them the gospel; and he credited his discoveries not to the use of mathematics or maps, but rather to the Holy Spirit who was bringing to pass what Isaiah had foretold. We must remember that America had been discovered numerous times, by other cultures, yet successful colonization and development took place only in the age of exploration begun by Columbus. Why? Because these explorers were bearers of the gospel, and their goal was to conquer the world for the kingdom of God. They came expecting that the New World would be Christianized. They were certain of victory, and assumed that any obstacles they met had been placed there for the express purpose of being overcome.

 

The whole rise of Western Civilization—science and technology, medicine, the arts, constitutionalism, the jury system, free enterprise, literacy, increasing productivity, a rising standard of living, the high status of women—is attributable to one major fact: the West has been transformed by Christianity. True, the transformation is not yet complete. There are many battles ahead. But the point is that, even in what is still largely an early Christian civilization, God has showered us with blessings.

 

Many Christians do not realize it, but the Hope is the basis for many of the great old hymns of the faith, written before the modern era of evangelical despair and pessimism. Think about that the next time you sing Martin Luther’s ‘A Mighty Fortress is our God,’ Isaac Watt’s ‘Jesus shall reign where’re the sun doth his successive journeys run,’ or George Duffield’s ‘Stand up, stand up for Jesus.’ Do you really believe that Jesus is now leading us ‘from victory unto victory…till every foe is vanquished, and Christ is Lord indeed’? That is what the Church has historically believed.

 

The fact is that you will not work for the transformation of society if you don’t believe society can be transformed. You will not try to build a Christian civilization if you do not believe that a Christian civilization is possible. It was the utter confidence in the victory of the Christian faith that gave courage to the earthly missionaries, who fearlessly strode into the farthest reaches of pagan Europe as if they were at the head of an army, preaching the gospel, driving out demons, smashing idols, converting whole kingdoms, bringing vast multitudes to their knees at the feet of Christ. They knew they would win…history was on their side, that Satan’s domains were being shattered daily, his illegitimate hold weakening and slipping with every advance of the Christian forces. They were not the least bit pessimistic about the power of the gospel. God honored their faith in His promise, and enabled them to lay the groundwork for Christendom, which will someday embrace the entire world.

 

When God’s people disobey and slip back into unbelief, the Church begins losing battles to Satan. Does this suggest that the Hope is mistaken? ‘This is the victory that has overcome the world: our faith’ (1 John 5:4). Our civilization will rise or fall in terms of God’s blessing; and response to our covenantal obedience (Deut. 28).

 

Jesus commanded: You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how will it be made salty again? It is good for nothing anymore, except to be thrown out and trampled under foot by men. You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do men light a lamp, and put it under the peck-measure, but on the lampstand; and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven (Matt. 5:13-16).

 

This is nothing less than a mandate for the complete social transformation of the entire world. And what Jesus condemns is ineffectiveness, failing to change the society around us. We are commanded to live in such a way that someday all men will glorify God—that they will become converted to the Christian faith. The point is that if the Church is obedient, the people and nations of the world will be discipled to Christianity. We all know that everyone should be a Christian, that the laws and institutions of all nations should follow the Bible’s blueprints. But the Bible tells us more than that. The Bible tells us that these commands are the shape of the future. We must change the world; and what is more, we shall change the world. –David Chilton’s Paradise Restored

 

Let us encourage one another to go forward and proclaim the living hope that we possess. “For God has not given us a spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7. To read Jon’s entire 24-page sermon on The Bible Emphatically Proclaims a Message of Hope, go to http://theresnoplacelikehome-summers.com/.

 

Covenanted Christian families committed to transforming their culture through living out the Word of God by working together in cohesive communities has been the backbone of Western civilizations. Without this foundation, no nation can continue to exist. With this in mind, our family is diligently working to provide a prosperous homestead for our children’s children, a godly influence upon our local community, and a complete transformation of our nation’s culture of death to one of abundant life through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.

 

Accordingly, we are in the process of beginning a dairy, a butchering facility for our grass fed animals, a smoked meats catering business, and a sawmill. Consequently, we are excited to offer naturally untreated milk and eggs, and later in the year, beef, pork, lamb, produce, and lumber. Grass fed from fields that have not been synthetically fertilized or treated with pesticides or herbicides, our animals happily graze in the fresh air and sunshine on pastures that grow a multitude of delicious grasses and drink fresh water from our farm’s clear springs. No added hormones or routine antibiotics used.

 

Sharing the abundance of our land and our labor with our homeschooling families, our family works together to bring nourishing foods from our family’s farm to your family’s table. In February, we will begin delivering milk and eggs along highways 270, 40, 55, and 67. If you are interested in receiving more information on any of these products, or becoming a drop off, please call 314-920-6135 and leave your name, number, address, and email. Hopefully these endeavors will help pay for our FCM conferences, which have been extremely efficacious in transforming our culture for the glory of God.

 

Instead of lamenting America’s spiraling decline, let us put our shoulders together and work to restore God’s order upon our land by reflecting His image in creating more families to take dominion of the earth for His glory.

 

Love, Jon, Candy, Sonia, Jedidiah, and Josiah

 

 

A Message from Past FCM Speaker Marshall Foster

We are so thankful to God for His mighty deed this year. We have seen Him change the hearts of millions of His people. This year more people of faith were involved in the election of 2016 than of any other in history! We are now believing God for a thorough great awakening of true faith in our country and around the world. Trish and I and our family and the staff at the World History Institute wish each of you a blessed Thanksgiving.

 

 

NEEDS AND SERVICES

 

A Letter from Past FCM Speaker Ruth Smith, President of Pilgrim Institute:

Help Restore America’s Understanding of Her Biblical Foundations

Dear Friends of Christian Liberty,

Many posts have been written since the election, and I feel, too, that God has given us an opportunity as American Christians which we must not waste. We dare not go back to the same complacency which allowed us to tacitly consent to the loss of so many liberties over the past years. We must recognize that the only source of liberty is from God and give Him the glory for all liberty we have in America. Then we must take our responsibility to see it is preserved for the next generations. This will only be done by knowing the Biblical foundations of our nation - then teaching and living the Biblical principles of government, which are these foundations in our homes first, and then seeing it extended throughout our nation. Christians, we must be wise, seek God’s face, pray for our leaders, and know who we are as a nation, so that we can restore and preserve its foundations. Pilgrim Institute has been ministering since 1979 as a part of that restoration process. May God bless each one of you who is willing to not just sit back and enjoy the blessings of liberty, but take the responsibility for our nation’s restoration and preservation.

Laboring Together, Ruth Smith

 

Restoring America’s Biblical Foundations DVD and Study Guide for Adults and Youth-A Biblical View of Government; A Providential View of History; Principles of America’s Christian History and Government; Hope for Our Nation

http://pilgriminstitute.org/

 

SPECIAL OPPORTUNITIES

 

Teresa Carr shares: Raging Rivers is kicking off a new program, A’s Days, for our 2017 season for students from Kindergarten through High School!

 

To celebrate hard-working students, the park is offering one day FREE admission during our A’s Days on June 24-30, 2017 to individuals providing a 2016-2017 report card with at least one ‘A’.  If students cannot come out to play during one of the special A’s Days, they can bring their report card with an ‘A’ on it to receive $10 off their admission price on an alternative day during the 2017 season.  This program will honor any school’s top grade in their grading system, whether it is an “A,” an “S” for Satisfactory, an “M” for Meets, or a number grade, etc. Please advise your students to check in at the ticket booth during the week of June 24-30, 2017 to receive their complimentary ticket, or a $10 off ticket on any other day of the season.

 

The A’s Days Program will replace Raging Rivers’ Raging Reader program, which has been offered for the past several years. We hope the promise of a fun summer day at Raging Rivers will give students an added incentive to work hard for good grades.  Unlike the Raging Readers program, the “A’s Days” program is offered to high school students, and also means less paperwork and record-keeping, with no deadlines.  We look forward to debuting the new program and to welcoming all the region’s “A” students during the 2017 season! 

 

 

THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME Celebrating 31 years of inspiration, encouragement, and biblical instructionwww.theresnoplacelikehome-summers.com

 

HEART TO HEART

 

Sweet Dreams!!

[Reprinted from There’s No Place Like Home book]

 

Remember, “Sweet dreams; Nightie-night; Sleep tight; Don’t let the bedbugs bite.” I’ve never seen a bedbug but just imagine that once bitten, sleeping tight and sweet dreams never become reality. Worse still are harsh words, rushed goodnights, no cuddles or last words of endearment. These are the bugs that bite hardest at bedtime.

 

When my head hits the pillow, sweet slumber comes immediately. As for most everything, I can thank my mom and dad once again for the way they paved my path for life. Slumber was always sweet at our house. We worked hard and played hard which readied our bodies for a deep rest. “Go to bed” was never used as punishment, but always as the final blessing for the day. Kissing, hugging, and “Goodnight, see you in the morning,” were a must for everyone, followed by Mom’s bedside visit for back rubs, heart-to-hearts, and prayers. It was these moments that set the stage for pleasant dreams, sweet slumber, and my first thoughts in the morning.

 

Many moms have called for solutions to their exasperating bedtime ordeals. The first thing I recommend is a consistent, orderly bedtime routine that ideally should be established early in life but can be established at any age with perseverance. Design a routine that works best for you, then talk and walk each child through it until it becomes a habit. Along with your routine, teach that Mom and Dad’s “Time for Bed” signals immediate action. Condition them to act on the first bedtime announcement, not the second, third, or fourth, but be considerate by giving them time to finish their present activity or at least end it at a comfortable place. This can be accomplished by saying, “You have 10 more minutes to finish and then time for bed.”

 

Our bedtime routine is as follows—tinkle, wash hands, brush teeth, jammies on, kisses, hugs, goodnights, drink of water, a few books, light out, heart-to-heart talk, prayers, back rub or tickles, and snuggling. The amount of time we snuggle with them varies, but lasts at least 10 minutes, sometimes up to 60 minutes. If they’re still awake when we get up, we leave the door slightly open because most children feel completely shut off from the family if their bedroom door is closed. Our kids go to sleep faster if they hear the familiar sounds of us in action.

 

When the children were babies, we snuggled them close against our bosom while we rocked and hummed. Now that Heather’s twelve, we still take time to talk, pray, and rub her back. Our bedtime encounters will always stay the same until our children are in homes of their own, and then it will begin again with our grandchildren. When our kids stay overnight at my mom and dad’s house, they are prepared for sweet slumber just as I was years ago—a continuous thread of love woven through the generations.

 

Warm baths before bed with a good powdering before the jams go on can be so soothing to most little ones, and bigger ones like me, so we take our baths at night before bed. For some, baths can be rejuvenating, so do what’s best for each. At one time, we had a 30 gallon fish tank in Heather’s room as her night light. It was beautiful at night, creating a lovely calm atmosphere. During the winter, Heather and Sonia have their Victorian Village houses lit for an enchanting effect. Frequently, I’ll light a candle, which casts lovely shadows upon the ceiling. Whatever you do, make the last moments of the day special—Sweet Dreams! Nightie-night! Don’t let the bedbugs bite!

 

 

CASTING A VISION FOR MULTIGENERATIONAL FAMILY BUSINESS

 

Please note:The rapid death of the “family business” points to the loss of continuity. Each year a growing number of family businesses are terminated, not because there are no living heirs, but because the heirs are not interested. Some believe that is one of the largest causes for the collapse of the “small business.” At one time the family was understood as a covenant unit. The loss of this idea has had staggering effects. The five foundational concepts of covenant have proven to be critical to the family’s life or death, sickness or health.

That You May Prosper by Ray Sutton, p. 9

 

Riedel Glass GmbH-Glassmaking/Kufstein, Austria founded in 1756. Johann Christoph Riedel (1678-1744) journeyed throughout Europe trading glass. His son Johann Carl Riedel (1701-1781), a guilder and glasscutter, operated his own workshop. Grandson Johann Leopold Riedel (1726-1800) founded a glass factory in 1756, benefited from the need to rebuild windowpanes after the Seven Year War (1756-1763) between Austrians and Prussians. The company is now known for making wineglasses. Georg Riedel of the tenth generation is the president. Eleventh-generation member Maximilian Riedel (born 1977) is in charge of the North American market; Laetizia Riedel (born 1974), a lawyer, plans to become the firm’s legal adviser.

 

 

DELIGHTFUL SURPRISES

 

-Nothing assures “sweet dreams” like soft, 100% cotton flannel sheets. And none are more festive than the red plaid Portuguese flannel sheet set from Vermont Country Store. I purchased a set for each of the boys last year, and they love them. Overview: These ultra-soft flannel sheets are made in Portugal, Europe’s premier flannel producer for more than 50 years. They’re brushed 3 times for added loft and warmth. Plus, in addition to being shrink-and pill-resistant, they get softer with each wash, so you’ll love them even more with every passing season. Yard-dyed to ensure colors remain true wash after wash. Fit snugly.

http://www.vermontcountrystore.com/store/jump/productDetail/Home/Bedding/Flannel_Bedding/Portuguese_Flannel_Sheet_Sets_/60225

-While you are on their site, skip over to the Maple Leaf Candy made with Vermont maple syrup. When we took Jedidiah skiing in Vermont for his 21st birthday, we stopped at one of the many sugar shacks and picked up these very candies. Sonia loved them so much that I surprise her with a box of them each year.

-Speaking of Sonia made me think of last night when I rubbed her feet while Jon was reading us Tocqueville’s account of America. She was all toasty warm because she had on the Icelandic wool socks I purchased for her last year from Vermont Country Store. If you have someone like Sonia, who keeps her flannel sheets on till June and then puts them right back on in October, treat them to the wonderful American made wool socks that Vermont Country Store carries.

 

 

IN THE LIBRARY

 

Lucy and Tom’s Christmas by Shirley Hughes

 

Every year since the children were toddlers, I have purchased Christmas books for their collection. This year it happened to be Lucy and Tom’s Christmas by the same author and illustrator who created Out and About.

 

What drew me to the book was its old-fashioned pictures and the sweet story of a sister and brother enjoying Christmas with their parents. Beginning on the front cover, the author allows us to peak ahead into the children’s bedrooms on Christmas morning as Lucy and Tom reach into their Christmas stockings for the delightful gifts that lay beneath their fingertips.

 

Next, we see them in their aprons, stirring the Christmas pudding—an English tradition served as part of the Christmas dinner in Britain—made of dried fruits, egg, suet, molasses, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger. When the postman rings, the children watch from the front window as he hands Christmas cards to their mother. Next, we find them crafting their own cards. With jars of water, thin paintbrushes, and paint sets, their aprons serve as paint smocks for their important mission to convey cheery wishes for family.

 

As Mum hangs greenery that looks like mistletoe, the children bring in paper chains they fashioned as their contribution to the family’s decorations. On the hall table, they’ve put a crib with Mary and Joseph and Baby Jesus, the three kings, the shepherds and a donkey and a cow. Lucy and Tom have cut out a big gold paper star to hang over them and put pretend cotton-wool snow all around.

 

Pictures of presents for their loved ones reveal a brooch for Mum, a bowtie for Dad, a comb for Granny, a handkerchief for Grandpa, a car for Tom and a pencil for Lucy. Just like a boy, Tom hides his in a different place every day—at the bottom ofthe wardrobe, on top of the wardrobe, and between his covers. And every day he asks Lucy to guess what her present is going to be. Adorably cute, yet bent over like a little old man with hands in pockets, Tom pops the question to Lucy, confident that she will never guess what he chose for her.

 

While baking cookies with Mum, Lucy answers a knock at the door to find carolers. Later the siblings accompany Dad to select their Christmas tree. Bustling with shoppers, London’s stalls display thrilling goods of toys, hanging geese, fruits and vegetables, and other delightful wares.

 

On Christmas Eve, Dad, Mum, Lucy, and Tom decorate the tree with lights and colored ornaments. When it is time for bed, the children hang up their stockings and then join Mum at the window to take one last look outside and find it snowing. Mum says, “Good, it’s going to be a white Christmas.”

 

In the morning, we see Lucy and Tom sitting on their beds surrounded by exciting new toys as they continue to probe into their stockings. When Mum and Dad finally awaken, the children join them in their room, exchange hugs and then spend a lovely morning playing with their toys while their parents drink tea in bed. As one would expect in any proper English bedroom, the chubby teapot sits on the bed stand with a pitcher of milk.

 

After breakfast, they walk to church and then home again to welcome their Granny and Grandpa, Aunty, Uncle, and cousin. A very delightful gathering ensues around the dinner table with roasted turkey, the Christmas pudding, good conversation, and lots of love.

 

Following dinner, the children sweetly present each of their beloved gifts to their beloved family members, only baby Elizabeth falls off to sleep right in the middle of her wrapping paper before she even has time to enjoy hers. Out of sorts from all the excitement, Grandpa thinks it best to take Tom off for a walk in the snow, just the two of them. When they arrive back home, the family plays a drawing game and then lights the tree. Filled with contentedness that family and Christmas naturally promote, the book ends with all the light from their love pouring out from the sitting room windows into the dark night with wishes of Merry Christmas, Lucy and Tom! Merry Christmas, everyone!

 

Or so it seems to end because on the back cover Lucy and Tom are snuggled sound asleep in their soft feather down bedcovers, all warm and cozy—as it should be on Christmas night.

 

Just four inches by four inches, our copy will be perfect for tiny hands that sort through my Christmas stash of treasures for a “Please read this, Grammy.”

 

 

SUMMERS ON THE FARM Everything we do is being recorded for our posterity to know and understand the loving sacrifices we made to ensure their prosperity!

 

-Sonia and her friend took a terrible spill from her horse. The friend actually had to be air lifted to Barnes in St. Louis after breaking her pelvis. After spending 30 years of our lives protecting and nurturing homeschoolers, this was truly a calamity that caused me great agony and grief!

-Jedidiah leveled the ground next to the barn for building another manger.

-The children and I went to Sessions to discuss dishwashers and ice makers with the sales lady.

-Jedidiah painted the angle iron on our new trailer and cut boards for the floor of our newly restored trailer.

-Jedidiah and Josiah finished placing slats over the rough sawn oak boards on the dairy barn.

-The constant stream of workers—construction crew, plumber, electrician, heating and cooling man, insulation man, propane tank men—has finally slowed down to a trickle.

-I tarred the holes in the old tin roof over the farrowing house.

-Jedidiah and Josiah sanded the paint off the metal stanchions in the dairy barn.

-Jedidiah painted the metal stanchions.

-Josiah rewired a very old metal gate that stood between two of our fields.

-Four generations of former residents of our farm came for a visit—sister, brother, daughters and husbands, cousin and husband, granddaughter and husband, and great granddaughter and great grandson. The oldest were 101 and 92. As we toured the farm, they told stories of their childhood here. One told of a rolling trip down the back hill in a barrel. Another was the story of how their father sorted the mail in little boxes and how people came to purchase stamps for three cents here at their home. Our family was so honored that they asked to come, delighted with their visit, and very pleased with the wonderful pictures they gave us of this once productive farm. In return we gave them the things we uncovered—a small china teacup, which had to be nearly 100 years old; an iron decorative peacock that once graced a sewing machine; two old decorative cars; and the staves from a wagon that the oldest resident’s father built. They said that they were so pleased we had the farm and for all the work we had done on it.

-Jon picked up two three-year-old Jersey cows. We are now getting 70 gallons of rich, creamy milk a week from our five Jersey girls.

-Jedidiah and Josiah constructed feed boxes in the dairy’s milking parlor.

-I picked up branches, limbs, and sticks along the fencing in our hayfield.

-Jedidiah and Josiah installed antique head catchers in the dairy’s feed boxes.

-A friend came to talk to us about converting the old farmhouse into a butcher shop. We are hoping it will save us money instead of constructing an entirely new building. The boys will meet with our contractor and do some figuring to see if this is the best direction to take.

-Jedidiah and Josiah picked up tall cedars they had cut out of the sawmill field (which I renamed Berkshire Downs because our Berkshire pigs spend most of their time there) and brought them to the barn for the construction of a new addition to the side of the barn.

-I ordered our commercial dishwasher and icemaker.

-Jedidiah used the auger to dig holes for the large cedar logs. Then he and Josiah used the post hole digger to deepen and widen the holes. One by one they picked up those heavy logs and placed them in the holes and tamped dirt to tightly secure them.

-Four weeks after the accident, Sonia is still in bed most days recovering from her spill from the horse. She still cannot turn her head very far without causing great pain, she is stiff, and her hip still hurts.

-Jon and a friend are working on the electric in the barn. I am so excited at the thought of finally having exterior lights for when Sonia and I are here alone on dark nights taking care of animals, especially when we must keep an eye on our Jersey bull when he comes with our Jersey girls at milking time. It is a comfort and a relief.

 

 

THE JOY OF COUNTRY LIVING

 

Every Day is Christmas for Our Animals

 

Since December is the month for making, baking, and procuring goodies for our loved ones, I felt it appropriate to share my nightly tradition, not just holiday nights, of fixing goodies for our animals.

 

I often hear the same question from friends, “Is all this for the animals?” Followed by, “Your animals are surely blessed to have you.”

 

Lined up on the counter are containers filled with delectable tidbits for the adorable creatures that dot our farm. Bowls of carrot peelings, apple cores, dried cheese, stale biscuits, pepper tops, egg shells, hard boiled eggs, strawberry cores, and everything left over from meal preparations and dining await the pigs that love all things edible. Cornhusks, corn cobs, watermelon rind, apple cores … are set out for the horses.

 

A much smaller bowl of left over chicken, chopped liver, gizzard and heart with juice is ready for the house cats, while a can of tuna and can opener lay poised for traveling to the barn for the mousers. A large bowl of halved cantaloupes, chopped up watermelon, quartered market melons and cucumbers, along with half-gallon jars of clabbered milk are lined up for the chickens, ducks, geese, and turkeys. In another jar sits left over gravy that will be filled with warm water in the morning just before it is poured over dry dog food in all six bowls.

 

When we arrive at the farm, goodies are distributed. First alfalfa and timothy is placed in the stanchions for our milk cows. A grain mixture is scooped out into the sheep’s trough, and alfalfa and timothy is stuffed into their mangers. Dry dog food is scooped into the farm dogs’ dishes and covered with warm gravy. As soon as the cats hear the tuna can pop, they come running to find fish and some fresh warm milk in their bowls.

 

When all the fowl are let out, they find nutritious clabbered milk in their pans, along with layer crumbles in their troughs. Then the bowls of leftovers are poured over a bag of feed for the pigs.

 

The grazers continue to graze, unless it is winter. Then the horses get some sweet feed and more hay is forked into the manger for the cattle. Finally, one of us throws out some birdseed for the birds and squirrels. Subsequently all is quiet, as contented animals feast on their goodies straight from our hearts to their tummies, as every day is Christmas for them.

 

Lovingly providing for my family, and now my animals, is my service of worship to God. For He says in Psalm 24:1, “The earth is the LORD’s and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein.” Proverbs 12:10 “Whoever is righteous has regard for the life of his beast…” This brings me to a great book.

 

The Big Snow by Berta and Elmer Hader is a delightful story containing adorable illustrations of the wildlife before and during a Big Snow. As the wild geese begin their flight south, all the animals begin their story about how they fare through the winter. Chipmunk, groundhog, skunk family, and raccoon family retire to their tunnels and dens for a long winter’s sleep, while the meadow mouse, white-footed wood mouse, and squirrels store away enough food for the lean winter months.

 

Then the night after Christmas there was a rainbow around the moon, which the wise old owl knew meant much snow. Soon flakes were falling until a lovely thick blanket of snow covered the woods, meadows, hills and valleys. The birds, rabbits and deer were hungry because they could not find food in the deep snow, but they need not worry, for the little old man in the red cap and little old woman in the green coat from the stone house generously scattered seeds, nuts, bread crumbs, corn, and hay for their woodland friends. Soon all the wildlife that weren’t sleeping through the winter joyfully came to partake of the generous banquet that the little old couple provided during the Big Snow.

 

One day that will be me. Too old to trek to the barns and outbuildings, I will be left with the task of feeding goodies to my housecats, dogs, and the wildlife surrounding our home. Just a few steps from the door, I will scatter seeds, breadcrumbs, biscuit crumbles, and a little hair from my head so some mama has a little extra softness and warmth to line her precious babies’ burrow or den.

 

 

THE DISMANTLING OF AMERICA Every hour our government spends 200 million dollars it does not have! Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it on to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.

–President Ronald Reagan, 1961

 

The Ten Skills of Leadership by Phyllis Schlafly

My definition of a leader is an ordinary person who accepts the responsibility to complete a job that requires the cooperation of other people. This demands a certain combination of skills that can be developed by practice, and the first letters of these skills spell LEADERSHIP.

 

LOYALTY A leader must have the virtue of Loyalty—to God, to country, to moral law, and to his followers. Loyalty must be a two-way street; it must flow down as well as up.

ENTHUSIASMA leader must have Enthusiasm. As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.”

ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITYThe keystone of the whole design is that a leader must Accept responsibility. He must make decisions, not be a buck passer. This is not talent or intellect but an achievement of will.

DETAILA leader must have infinite capacity for Detail and follow through. As Michelangelo once said, “Trifles make perfection, but perfection is not trifle.”

EFFICIENT A leader makes Efficient use of his time. He organizes his mind, his day, his week, his year. He can cope with the pressure of deadlines.

RESOLUTE A leader must be Resolute. He cannot be dismayed by the heartaches and heartbreaks he encounters. That is the penalty of leadership and its badge of honor.

SENSE OF HUMOR A leader must have a Sense of humor. He doesn’t have to be always happy, but he must remain cheerful even in the face of defeat.

HARD WORK A leader must seek, not avoid, Hard work. Opportunities are everywhere, but they are disguised as hard work, and that’s why most people don’t recognize them.

ITEMIZE A leader must Itemize duties and delegate tasks. He must motivate the cooperation of the other people.

PERSEVERANCE Finally, a leader must have Perseverance. Most problems we face have no instant cures; a leader must gear up for the long haul.

 

 

Coca-Cola revealed its globalization agenda in its Together Is Beautiful ad aired during the 2014 Super Bowl and then again during the Olympics in Rio. Many Americans expressed outrage because they understand the peril we face from immigrants who do not share our Christian beliefs, possess no appreciation of our Christian heritage, nor have any intention of assimilating into our country’s Christian parameters—what little is left, anyway. The ad features people from many different races, as well as what seems to be a homosexual couple with their daughter, singing America the Beautiful as they enjoy a host of activities, like visiting the Grand Canyon.

 

Consider the verses of America the Beautiful:

 

America! America! God shed His grace on thee. God mend thine every flaw, Confirm thy soul in self-control, Thy liberty in law!These verses are seeking God’s divine help in correcting its sins while emphasizing that liberty is found only in God’s law. These cultures do not believe in the same God but worship idols. Their religion does not adhere to the same law.

 

O beautiful for heroes proved in liberating strife. Who more than self their country loved, and mercy more than life!How dishonorable this ad is to those who fought for liberty, which only comes through Christ!

 

May God thy gold refine till all success be nobleness and every gain divine! This is speaking of God’s divine blessings because of our obedience to Him.

 

Thine alabaster cities gleam, Undimmed by human tears! America! America! God shed His grace on thee. Till nobler men keep once again Thy whiter jubilee. This is speaking of a “City on a Hill” serving as a beacon of Christ’s light, which shines out to an oppressed people who are in bondage to Satan.