Friday, May 23, 2008

Dennis and Barbara - Exodus Tour

We had a wonderful time in Egypt and Jordan and are finding Israel as fascinating as we ever imagined.
We can now say that we've seen the Pyramids, a papyrus making shop and the Egyptian museum in Cairo....which, by the way is one huge place that could easily consume a week.
Cairo is a mysterious hodgepodge of peoples that seem lost in a kaleidoscope
in which there is no escape. To the first time visitor from the U.S., it is a like a whole city built on a refuse heap.

I will be posting all of the 1980 photos on the Katana Photo website and I will publish the link to it.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Johan and Stephanie Van der Westhuizen May 10th, 2008

May 2008

“I will bless the Lord at all times. His praise shall continually be in my mouth. My soul shall make its boast in the Lord... O magnify the Lord with me and let us exult His name together.” (Ps 34:1-3)

How grateful the psalmist was to the Lord! In a similar way our hearts are also full of gratitude to the Lord for special blessings in our lives. What an unusual few weeks these last ones have been as the Lord has orchestrated some unexpected blessings that lets our hearts relate to the gratefulness and praise of the psalmist. We have seen the Lord provide for us in order to see some important events take place in our lives.

As I am writing this letter, Stephanie along with our daughter Lycia, are in Pennsylvania doing a disaster response training course. This was made possible because of a gracious sponsorship from a church. Apart from the fact that Stephanie may be called up for future disaster responses, training like this can hold future benefits for our ministry in Chile as well. We live in an earthquake area of the world and this training could be a very specific ministry we can offer to our community. For instance, while the world’s attention is presently focused on the Myanmar disaster, an evacuation on a much smaller scale is also underway in the same region where we live in southern Chile. Already thousands have been evacuated as Volcano Chaitén continues to spew out ash over neighboring territories. Disaster response preparation training could be an effective way of mercy ministry contribution to our communities.

In our last communication I expressed my disappointment at not being able to attend a conference in Chile. I was able to attend a mission conference over the same dates and during that time someone gave me a ticket so that I was able to visit the team in Chile and also begin to put out “feelers” for possible new future ministries. This was also an important time since I had to complete ministry projects there for my D. Min. requirements. This unexpected blessing allowed key kingdom times, in Santiago as well as in Osorno and Puerto Montt. It was good to see how well the Frites and Senters are doing and to encourage them. The Aguileras in Puerto Montt are very eager for us to start a new work there. Since God has blessed the Five Love Languages seminar in the region, the team will begin with that soon. Please pray for them in this venture.

As far as the family is concerned, the biggest news is that our youngest son Brendon got engaged to Kristi Greer, a wonderful girl who we are proud to add to the fold of the “Van Clan”. Their wedding date is set for August 2 this year. We are looking forward to Stephanie’s mom coming over to join us for this happy occasion.

Thank you to all our supporters who through prayer and finances enable us by the Lord’s grace to remain ministering His goodness to others.

Together for Jesus,
Johan (on behalf of the rest of the team)

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Your Petro Dollars at Work

Pastoral Malpractice

Pastoral malpractice
Thom S. Rainer - Guest Columnist - 5/6/2008 11:00:00 AM

I would consider pastoral malpractice among the greatest treasons a minister can commit against the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Unfortunately, it is practiced weekly without inhibition.

What do I mean by pastoral malpractice? I mean ministers who stand and preach a gospel other than God's rightful need for punitive justice against our sin and His wrath being appeased by pouring out upon Christ judgment intended for us. He in turn sets us in right legal standing before Himself, through faith in what Jesus has done, while simultaneously giving to us His holy righteousness.

Regrettably, too many evangelical churches have become centers for motivational speaking where congregants learn that "God helps those who help themselves;" that sin is something that keeps us from reaching our full potential, not an infinite offense against the Creator who demands from His creation unblemished righteousness.

The Apostle Paul tells us that humans inherently know we are separated from God by our sin and we try to suppress that truth through drugs, sex, greed, power, alcohol, etc. Sadly, too often when desperate individuals arrive in our churches looking for a solution they get messages about how to improve their lives or their relationships, but the Gospel is absent in the remedy. J.I. Packer, in his quintessential work, Knowing God, correctly writes:

"We have all heard the Gospel presented as God's triumphant answer to human problems –- problems of our relation with ourselves and our fellow humans and our environment. Well, there is no doubt that the Gospel does bring us solutions to these problems, but it does so by first solving a deeper problem -– the deepest of all human problems, the problem of man's relation with His Maker. And unless we make it plain that the solution to the former problems depends on the settling of this latter, we are misrepresenting the message and becoming false witnesses of God."

Please read the rest of the article Here

Where to Buy Your Gas Without Supporting the Middle East and Venezuela

These companies import Middle Eastern oil:

Shell........................... 205,742,000 barrels

Chevron/Texaco......... 144,332,000 barrels

Exxon/Mobil............... 130,082,000 barrels

Marathon/Speedway... 117,740,000 barrels

Amoco............................62,231,000 barrels

Citgo gas is from South America, from a Dictator who hates Americans. If you do the math at $30/barrel, these imports amount to over $18 BILLION! (oil is now $90 - $100 a barrel

Here are some large companies that do not import Middle Eastern oil:

Sunoco..................0 barrels

Conoco.........................0 barrels

Sinclair..................0 barrels

BP/Phillips.............0 barrels

Hess......................0 barrels

ARC0.....................0 barrels

If you go to, you will get a list of the station locations near you.

All of this information is available from the Department of Energy and each is required to state where they get their oil and how much they are importing.

Read the rest of the tips on gasoline Here

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Official Terrorist Terminology

Now, just when you think you've heard it all......(actually this does make good sense)....Counter Terrorist Communication Center Memo on Proper Terminology for Terrorists

Ligers, Tigons, and Zonkeys, Oh My!

This is a nightmare about to come coming true! This is from the Family Research Council.....Please read this!!
Ligers, Tigons, and Zonkeys, Oh My!

Here is the complete news article that is referenced in Tony Perkin's brief writeup.
Exclusive: Half man, half chimp - should we beware the apeman's coming?

Monday, May 05, 2008

So, You Think You Live in a Sane World?

So you think that we live in a sane world? One in which most know right from wrong and "common sense" is well understood by the majority? Think again.

Read this and decide. Not so private: Skirts are fair game for voyeurs

We take something sinful and ruinous to many and use monetary terms to justify it. Report: Casinos contribute $1B to state economy(Iowa)

Let's talk about Global Warming!!!
Experts Expose Warming

Homeschooling Threatened in California HSLDA: Defending Homeschool Freedom in California

But what is the real reason that Homeschooling is being attacked? Could it be that 90+% of homeschool families are Christian? Could it be that there are organizations that want ALL children in the public schools in order to indoctrinate them to their agendas?

Or how about this one? Here we are in a struggle with Islam and we have the FBI getting "Sensitivity" training from the very same people we are in a struggle with? FBI boosts training in Islamic 'sensitivity'

PC(USA) Confused and Confusing

With news like this I'm both sad and relieved that I'm a member of PCA. I'm saddened for my brothers and sisters who are silently enduring the the slide into atheism that ultimately results. I want to encourage all who have stayed to fight, but when you tire, please come join us in the PCA and help us fight the encroachment of liberalism.

PC(USA) sends confusing message on marriage
Allie Martin - OneNewsNow - 5/2/2008 6:00:00 AM

A mixed message is being sent in the Presbyterian Church (USA), says a group that monitors the denomination. The statement follows the acquittal of a Presbyterian minister over charges that she violated denominational law concerning marriage.

The highest court of the denomination recently found that minister Jane Spahr did not violate denominational law when she officiated over the weddings of two lesbian couples. But according to the ruling by the Permanent Judicial Commission of the General Assembly, Presbyterian ministers must not imply or state that a homosexual ceremony is the same as a traditional marriage.

However, Jim Berkley, director of Presbyterian Action with the Institute on Religion & Democracy, says the ruling by the high court was confusing. "They basically said that ... according to our definition of marriage, marriage is only between a man and a woman," explains Berkley.

Berkley says the Commission then reasoned that according to their definition of marriage, the ceremony that the minister performed "could not be a marriage service, therefore she could not have been violating the rule."

But Berkley argues that the Presbyterian Church USA needs to take a firm stand on the issue of homosexuality. He believes the church should look on homosexual practice as a sin, and instead of skirting the issue it should be condemned. "This is too wishy-washy, too nuanced," he states. "What we need is a very clear statement that says we believe that homosexual practice is [sinful] ... that any practice of homosexuality is not something that the church can countenance, and that we won't be playing around with it ...."

In recent developments, Spahr says she is currently counseling three homosexual couples in preparation for marriage.