Saturday, February 18, 2006

A Woman's Place is in the Kitchen--Sink

I worked in the nursery at church today. I thought this photo was too cute to resist.

We had some bad weather this weekend, including more than a 50 degree drop in temperatures since last week. What was worse was the freezing rain, sleet, mist, drizzle, and ice pellets. Thankfully, God protected us as I drove Rachel to her teacher test very early yesterday morning, and then back to pick her up at 11am. (BTW, she thinks she did OK on the test, but it will be several weeks before she knows for sure.)

I would have stayed home from church today after hearing on the radio how many crashes there were on the roads, but that would have left too many responsibilities just hanging. So after getting Zach, Scott, and Wesley to scrape the ice off the car, off we went, and God took us safely.

After I finally got out of nursery, I was upset because I couldn't locate Wesley and Scott, who had spent the weekend with us. Turns out they had left with Wesley's parents and failed to tell find me and let me know they were doing so which made me somewhat frustrated and anxious.
Rachel's choir practice and my Bible study were canceled due to the bad weather, so I'm presently just chillin' (and I wish that weren't literally true--I really dislike the cold weather).

In other news, Gary called from Bremen, Germany. He went to church twice today--the regular service and the contemporary one. Doro found someone to do simultaneous translation for him during one of the sermons. He said that after church they had been to town to see the musicians.

Interesting Statistics

For more information, check the IFOBA website (which I think is still somewhat under construction). Sometimes it is nice to see various Christian groups working together.

Worldwide Bible Translation Statistics
  • World Population--—6.5 billion
  • Languages spoken in the world--—6,912
  • Languages with some or all of the Bible--2,403 (26 first published in 2005)
  • Translation programs in progress in languages without adequate Scripture--1,640
  • Languages The Jesus Film has been translated into--—919
  • Languages needing Bible translation work to begin--2,529 (representing approximately 272 million people)

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Living Roses

I think this year was her first Valentine's Day that Rachel enjoyed the holiday rather than dreading it. More details on her blog if you are interested.

Gary and I took a day off work for our Valentine's Day. Well, not really. Really it was to take Gary to the Low Vision Clinic to get his once-every-five-years eye check up and get the magic letter that lets him renew his driver's license. The eye appointment went well, and they said his macular degeneration had not gotten any worse, though he is now show some signs of far sightedness due to age. Then off the DMV for a two hour wait and a young lady who had no clue how to deal with the magic paper. Eventually, Gary was able to talk them into renewing his license. Yay, done with that for the next five years.

Gary leaves for Germany on Friday. Today each of our German daughters emailed a shopping list to him. So tomorrow it is off to Bath and Body Works and the Cowboy hat store to do some shopping.

Rachel still hasn't heard any news about any jobs, but she continues to earn a little money by helping an elderly couple in our neighborhood to prepare a homemade book of their daughter's poetry for printing. Her big brother also has her doing some legwork for him as he buys and resells tickets in his spare time. Pray for Rachel--she takes her last Texas Teacher exam on Saturday.

And speaking of brothers, David emailed me today saying he might finally get paid for some engineering work he did back in 2003 in developing electronic chaos system. Scroll to the bottom of the PASCO catalog page and you'll actually see his name in the credits. Yay for delayed gratification.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Singleness - part 2 - Men

Now about single men. Remember, I'm talking about Christian single men.

1. Later - As with women, many young men today see the value in getting an education before getting married (often including a graduate degree). But then many go from there to get a job, buy a car, buy a house, get a better job, buy a better car, buy a better house. I wonder if it has ever occurred to them that maybe a woman would be interested in them not just their stuff?

2. The age aspect - If a man is still single at age 30, he shouldn't expect a woman of age 20 be attracted to him. If he felt the need to wait to get married until he was older, then he should expect to marry someone near his own age, not some beautiful young thing just out of high school.

3. The physical aspect - unless he is in perfect physical shape himself, he shouldn't expect all the available women to be tall, blonde and skinny. If women wait to marry as do men, they are already past their prime in physical beauty.

4. More on the physical aspect - Yeah, it is easy to become overweight in this sedentary society, but if a guy is considerably overweight, he should quit thinking about it and do something about it. That may mean getting some help with a weight loss program or a personal trainer, or an accountability partner. Losing weight will make him more attractive, and at his age, he might need a little help.

5. The social aspect - women can live with a less-than-perfect physical specimen, but she can't live with someone with no social skills. So single men need to learn to talk. At least a little.

6. Some men think they can serve the Lord better as a single. Yeah, maybe so, Paul may have thought so. But don't ask anyone in the OT. It seems to me if we read the entire Bible, there is considerably more evidence that God is in favor of people getting married than people staying single. It is not good for man to be alone. Or women either. It is well known that men think about sex "all the time." Is it possible that God gave men sexual urges SO THAT THEY WOULD GET MARRIED?

7. Time to grow up. Maybe living with one's parents is convenient and easy and cheap. But maybe the convenience of mom being there is an impediment to growing up and getting one with one's own life.

8. Young single men need to quit criticizing young women because they have "feelings" or because they want to get married. Yeah, they do. And they also want to have babies. I dare say that most women in their mid twenties or older are quite possibly going to have these feelings. Nesting is natural for women.

Whoops, looks like my list for men is longer than for women. Maybe so. Maybe that is because I see more men putting off marriage than women, and with Christians, if not with our society in general, it is up to the men to make the decision to marry. A woman can say no if she want to, but she can't initiate marriage regardless how she feels.

9. Fear of divorce - I just thought of one more item to add to my list, but it goes for women and men. Some Christian young people are afraid to marry because they have seen too many marriages fail, including those of their peers who married when they were young. I can't deny the statistics but I also don't accept this as a reason not to marry. It is a reason to let scripture, not Hollywood, form one's attitude about marriage.

As with yesterday's post, I'm not taking public comments. But if you want to say anything to me about this post, you can email me at thainamu at

Monday, February 13, 2006

Singleness - part 1- Women

In honor of Valentine's Day, I'm going to post some thoughts I've been having about singles. I have two kids who are in the singles category so I observe them and I also observe their peers. Have you noticed, like I have, that blogs are a medium favored by a number of singles to talk about their singleness? As a single friend once told me, "The internet is an open place" and that's where many of my ideas come from for this post.

My comments here about single women, and those of tomorrow about single men, don't actually cover all singles. I'm focusing only on singles who are Christians; indeed, the Christian singles' scene should look pretty different from the secular singles' scene. Also, I'm not talking about sixteen year olds in this post. In general, I'm talking singles who are post-college.

A number of young people these days think there is value in waiting to get married until they are older. That in and of itself, doesn't sound so bad. But it does bring some problems. So if they're going to wait, they need to be ready to accept what that really means.

1. The biological aspect - For women, it means they are starting to get old. Yes, I know, mid to late twenties doesn't sound all that old, but if they wait to marry, then want to wait a couple years before having kids, their bodies are already past the prime for bearing children. Besides that, do they know how much energy it takes to raise children? and to raise teenagers? These women will be old and tired long before their children are grown.

2. The attractiveness aspect - It seems to me that women reach their peak of physical attractiveness by their early twenties, and slowly go downhill from there. So if physical beauty has anything to do with the relationships they want to have, they need to realize that at 27 they aren't going to look as good as they did at 21, and deal with that. They also need to realize that it is very easy to gain weight and very hard to take it off, especially in our sedentary society.

3. The biological clock aspect - Women, especially intelligent women, are encouraged to get an education, get a job, and put off marriage and/or motherhood until later. Sounds like good advice. But how many intelligent, educated, and working women do I hear whining that they now want to get married and have babies? Why is that? That is because it is a STRONG fact of life that women want to be married and have children. Women have a STRONG instinct to nurture.

4. Expectations - OK, so what do these single women in their mid to late twenties (or even older) want? They've gotten educated, they've gotten themselves a good job. They've proven they are capable and independent. They have put so much energy and time and money into that, they want a man who is as perfect as they are. I know one woman who is whining about wanting to get married, but everytime anyone says, "well, what about so-and-so?" she always says things like "he's too fat/skinny, he's too intelligent/dumb, he's too short/tall, he's too busy/lazy, he's too quiet/talkative." OK, friend, be picky if you must, but realize you may never find a perfect guy.

It is entirely possible that no one except Ma Hoyt even reads this blog, but just in case any of my single friends recognize themselves in today's or tomorrow's posts, please know that I'm not picking on you specifically, rather, I'm trying to synthesize things I've been observing in various places for a while now. I'm also going to save myself a potential problem by disallowing public comments. However, if anyone has anything to say to me about this post, he or she can email me at thainamu at

Sunday, February 12, 2006

From a Different Seat

Today we sat in a different pew than we usually do for church, right behind the teens. We attend a medium-sized church with a large number of teens. They have the habit of all sitting together in the front four pews. They are such an assortment:

  1. The awkward ones--Though longing for acceptance, they haven't a clue how to act.
  2. The abandoned ones--From broken or blended families, they seem too old to be teenagers.
  3. The naive ones--Wide-eyed and unaware, they seem too young to be teenagers.
  4. The sullen ones--Forced by parents to be in church, they pout. In some cases, they actually are happy to be there, but wouldn't want anyone to know that.
  5. The confident ones--Though young, many are quite mature in their faith. These are the fortunate ones who have gotten this far in life without hating church or their parents.
The youth pastor made an understated plea for parents and teens to TALK and HUG. And if I may turn my blog into a soapbox for the moment--I not only agree with the youth pastor, I would say it much stronger. Parents, don't let your kids hide in their shyness or their introverted desire to too often isolate themselves. Talk to them and MAKE them talk to you. Yes, you can do that. Don't give in to their demands for you to leave them alone--they don't need to be left alone, they need to learn how to relate to people. They need your active expressions of love--emotional and intellectual, for sure, but also your physical expressions of love. And don't believe the lie that you can show your love in any better way than spending time with them.