Monday, March 30, 2009

She Can't Stop Smiling...


...and can you guess why?!

The Lord has recently been working in Bethany's life in marvelous, wonderful ways -- especially in regards to a godly, dedicated young man named Daniel Beasley. Daniel is originally from our home church but now lives in Virginia, studying to become a lawyer while working for HSLDA. We are overjoyed with how the Lord has been clearly directing and drawing their hearts to each other and will look forward to sharing more details in the months to come!!

"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above..."
James 1:17

From HIM All Blessings Flow

It's with a thankful heart, tired body, and many, many wonderful memories that I finally get around to updating this blog. Wow -- it's been quite a weekend!

I have so MANY things I'd like to post and share with you all. We had so many specific answers to prayer during the NCHEA Conference this weekend. We had so many unexpected joys and surprises. We saw the Lord work in such amazing ways. And I want to share it all with you!

So this is just a quick 'teaser' post as Bethany and I sort through 2000+ pictures and put together a few posts to give you a glimpse into the Lord's goodness over the past few days.


In the meantime -- would you keep our brothers in prayer?! They are working long hours in Omaha this week to record a Gospel/Bluegrass Instrumental CD. May the Lord give them strength and may HIS name be glorified through the upcoming project!

Stay tuned!.....

Friday, March 27, 2009

Abi

Abi Lyn

“joy of my father” :: “beautiful”

One who bring pleasure and joy to her Father!

“The LORD your God in your midst, The Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.”
Zephaniah 3:17
Happy Birthday Abi!
(You're an amazing sis-in-love and we thank God for you!)

Friday, March 20, 2009

NCHEA Preparations

Once again we've begun the massive process of preparing for the annual Kid's Conference held in conjunction with our state home school convention. Our theme for this year is "Westward -- Living our lives by God's design" and we are so excited about the message, music, drama, Bible verses, character lessons, costumes, decor, activities, and...well,... you get the idea!

This week our days have been filled with assorted projects as we're doing our best to make an entire ol'West town out of cardboard and paint. With many thanks to Mom for her artistic input, we've been drawing, painting, and stepping back to enjoy the progress!


Painting a prairie out in the prairie sunshine!
[smile]

Working on the Livery Stable

Bethany applies her skilled, steady hand to the lettering

The project coordinator

Anna, the official prop/costume coordinator joined us for two very full days of work.
And yes -- we had a 'girls french braid day'!!

Thanks for the great times, Anna!


The Kid's Conference starts next Thursday with an all-day staff training. We'd greatly appreciate your prayers as we prepare to share with 70+ other teens, ministering to almost 300 children all day Friday and Saturday.

May the Lord be glorified!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Bright Lights


Attention young ladies in the Omaha, Nebraska area! We are very excited about two outstanding conferences coming to our area on April 14 - 18. Over the years, our family has enjoyed meeting the Malley family on a few occasions and we've been greatly blessed by their deep love for each other and the Lord -- coupled with an earnest desire to encourage and edify the body of Christ.

And now they are bringing their Bright Lights Conferences to Omaha! We're looking foward to sharing music and serving through both Conferences. For more information on the conference, please visit here.

To register, click here.

Fathers and Mothers are encouraged to attend with their daughters.

Hope to see you there!


"...that you may become blameless and harmless,
children of God without fault
in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation,
among whom you shine as lights in the world,
holding fast the word of life..."
Phil 2:15-16

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Diamond Vogel

On Monday our family had the special treat of a field trip to the Diamond Vogel paint factory in Orange City, Iowa.

For as long as I can remember, visits to the Lincoln Diamond Vogel store had special meaning to us children -- it meant a fun outing with Daddy as he let us 'little kids' tag along on his business errands. Then, years later, when I got my drivers licence I was able to make the trip myself -- helping the Portablast business by delivering paint to the jobsite.

So Monday was an extra-special occasion as we were able to see the 'behind the scenes' workings of the often-visited paint company!

They welcomed us with a warm reception and lots of fun conversation. We were so excited to discover Vogel Family's rich heritage of faith and love for God's Word. It's so encouraging to see companies using their platform to share the Light of Christ!


Charissa smiles behind her safety glasses as she gets ready for the tour.

The quality control lab


Shipping area

The Vogel family originated from Holland, so the Dutch heritage is a big part of their family and company. Such a rich, blessed history!


We finished off the visit with a service at a local church, and a large Christian high school assembly on Tuesday morning.


Thank you, Vogel family!


"One generation shall praise Your works to another,
And shall declare Your mighty acts."
Psalm 145:1

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Future Vision


As I mentioned in an earlier post, we are excited about the Lord's specific leading and directing in Andrew's life. So much has developed that I'm almost puzzled on how to share it all in one post! [smile]

After yearly visits to the Wilderness Boy's Camp in Fair Play, South Carolina, the Lord began turning Andrew's heart last spring towards ministering to these troubled boys. The Camp provides countless opportunities to have life-changing impact on these young men, while experiencing personal growth in communication, relationships, and a wide variety of practical life skills.

After visiting the camp more extensively these past months, he has committed to serve as a 'Chief' for the upcoming two year term. He will be leaving our home on April 8th to embark on this adventure as he pursues God's best for his life.

To give you a quick glance of where he'll be serving, here are some pictures we've taken of Camp in years past....



Everything is rugged camp-style, including hygiene facilities!



The boys build their dwellings and are responsible to keep them tidy.



Two days a week the Chief and boys make all their meals up-trail.


The Chuckwagon, where most meals are shared and schooling is taught.



The team Andrew will be working with.



Specific Prayer Requests for Andrew --


  • The Lord's continued grace, strength, power, perseverance and love to be evidenced in Andrew's life as he seeks to grow in his daily walk.

  • Wisdom and patience in working at the camp -- especially as the boys work through deep hurts and life decisions.

  • Salvation and spiritual growth for the camp boys.

  • For his continuing friendship with Kori, as they grow together and seek the Lord's specific direction for the future.

  • Financial frugality, wisdom, and creativity.

And we'd appreciate prayer for the rest of us Wissmanns -- who will be practicing, practicing, practicing to fill in the huge gap Andrew will leave behind. We will miss him both musically, and in leadership -- as Andrew adds greatly to the dynamics of our practice times.

Thank you for your prayers, and we'll look forward to keeping you posted!

"The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord
and He delighteth in his way."
Psalm 37:23



"We will miss you dearly,
you wonderful brother of ours!"
(((Hugs)))

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

In 24 hours...

...we went from this:

...to this:



But its good to be back to 'home sweet home' -- Nebraska!

After installing the new power steering pump last Friday, we said our goodbyes in Florida and turned the bus northward. With the help of a new driver behind the wheel (way to go, Matthias!) we drove through the night and covered the 1,450 miles in less than 24 hours.

We returned home with full and grateful hearts --it's been a blessed and fruitful trip. Full of joys and sorrows. Precious moments with friends enroute -- and keeping in touch with our dear ones back home. Evidence of many answered prayers. Tears and priceless moments behind prison bars. Many, many, many safe miles and meaningful services.


And all this with a common thread -- the faithfulness of the mighty God we serve. Day in and day out His mercies are new every morning.


Love so amazing, so divine,
Demands my love, my life, my all!


"Your mercy, O LORD, is in the heavens;
Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.
How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God!
Therefore the children of men put their trust
under the shadow of Your wings."
Psalm 36:5,7


Thank you all for your prayers towards our family during this trip. We are so grateful for your consistant prayers and encouragement. What a joy it is to labor with you!

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Susanna


Susanna Evelyn

“lily” :: “pleasant”

One who radiates a pure heart and cheerfully serves with all her might.

“And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ.”
Colossians 3:23-24

Happy 12th Birthday Susanna!

Friday, March 06, 2009

Un-expected Plans



Sometimes plans change. Like when you all load into the bus and wave goodbye to dear friends...only to hear a jolting *clunk* from the maze of mechanical contraptions. (Please remember readers -- I am not a mechanic! [smile])

Yes, our power steering pump went out on our bus, so we've been 'stranded' in Orlando for a few extra days. The timing has worked out well as we're enjoying a few extended days with friends here, but we're hoping to be back in Nebraska for the weekend. The projected goal is for our guys to get the needed part installed yet this afternoon. Then we'll be on the homeward trail!

But here's a quick peek from the extra days we've had with our Orlando friends...




Rolling out homemade pizza dough


Outdoor exercise


Twins!


Matching Pajamas


Singing at the nursing home


Baking the "Hannah-Banana" specialty bread.
(Thanks, Mr. Brad!)


Smiles from the front porch


"A man's heart plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps."
Proverbs 16:9

Thursday, March 05, 2009

My Father's World


Joyful, joyful, we adore Thee, God of glory, Lord of love;
Hearts unfold like flowers before Thee, opening to the sun above.


Melt the clouds of sin and sadness; drive the dark of doubt away;
Giver of immortal gladness, fill us with the light of day!



All Thy works with joy surround Thee, earth and heaven reflect Thy rays,
Stars and angels sing around Thee, center of unbroken praise.


Field and forest, vale and mountain, flowery meadow, flashing sea,
Singing bird and flowing fountain call us to rejoice in Thee.

Mortals, join the happy chorus, which the morning stars began;
Father love is reigning o’er us, brother love binds man to man.



Ever singing, march we onward, victors in the midst of strife,
Joyful music leads us Sunward in the triumph song of life.



*Photos taken on a recent trip to Miami for an evening of ministry and a day enjoying God's amazing creation.

Monday, March 02, 2009

In the Orange Grove

Mmmmmm! Can you smell the fragrant, citrus aroma?!

(Its posts like this that I wish for 'scratch and sniff' blog technology!)

The orange orchards are heavy with fruit these days, and several of us spent a recent afternoon picking bag after bag of the treats. Nothing tastes quite like fresh-squeezed orange juice ...or a bowl-full of the fruit, cut in true "Florida style".


With our dear friend, Kaitlyn

Yes, to some people, simply picking the oranges and placing them in bags can be a bit mundane. Leave it to Stephen to add excitement to the picking process! [smile]

Nathanael with his good friend, Mr. Knuth

Wish we could share with you!!!

Sunday, March 01, 2009

He Can't Stop Smiling...


...and can you guess why?!

The Lord has recently been working in Andrew's life in amazing, wonderful ways -- especially in regards to a lovely girl named Kori. We look forward to sharing more in the upcoming weeks. We are excited about his vision and long-range plans [stay tuned!] and are praising the Lord for the gift of this precious friendship.



"The LORD has done great things for us, And we are glad."
Psalm 126:3