Friday, May 21, 2010

Changes, changes

4:03 p.m. Today's project was to help our son Steven with his passport paperwork. I had stayed up until midnight working on the DS-11 form through a private passport expediter service, while Steven texted me information as I went along, between the private service and the U.S. State Department website. At least three do-overs, as I was sent back and forth between screens, but I finally got the online forms filled in and printed! Kind of reminded me of filling out his student financial paperwork for Fresno Pacific U, with us in different locations, texting and emailing back and forth. You gotta love technology--or does it actually create more work?
That's a question each of us has to answer for ourselves..."I wisdom, dwell with prudence, and find out the knowledge of witty inventions," Proverbs 8:12 says; but Psalm 106:29 says that the children of Israel "provoked God to anger with their inventions." ( both KJV). So are we utilizing the Holy Spirit's wisdom when we access the latest technology, or angering God by accessing sinful choices and venues? We need to pray to be in God's will for any and all ventures we undertake.
As Steven and I stepped up to the counter at the Post Office, we spoke very courteously of Steven's need for an expedited passport, but the lady said, "I have appointments all through July 6th." No budging, even though we had everything we needed. But she did tell us that the State Department Office in Los Angeles could do it. After a long telephone call, we had to accept a May 28th, 7 a.m. appointment, and I can go as an "authorized person" in Steven's place, as long as an "Authorized Acceptance Location" like the County Clerk Recorder, sees Steven in person and he hands in a signed permission letter. A real barrel of laughs, going into downtown L.A. in the early morning. I'll take my husband Steve with me. (The reason Steven can't go is that he has to have his final check-ups and prep for competition the next day). One good thing came of today's efforts: the $302 we were set to spend for the private expediter will be refunded back to Steven's credit card!
Since the County is on a Friday furlough day, it looks like Steven and I will have to head over to the Recorder's office on Monday. Within about 48 hours, our lives were turned upside down to help further our son's career. I'm not thrilled with the time-consuming nature of this Canada trip, but I'm willing to see what doors God will open. Big changes are coming...
On my way home, I called my friend who has been through one kind of change no one would wish for: losing her home and moving to a rental. Her new home is beautiful, very spacious, and close to my neighborhood. So I can pick her up to come to the I Samuel Bible study I'm starting on June 10th in Moreno Valley, the summer study I've done for the past four years. She is very excited to come, and will request Thursdays mornings off. She went through a very sorrowful period --as anyone would-- when losing the home where she raised her kids, but is showing true joy now, and a womanly pride in her new home. The Lord has blessed her for exemplifying Titus 2:5, being a "discreet, chaste, homemaker, good, obedient to her own husband..." and as 2:4 commands, she loves her husband and children prayerfully and devotedly. Such a good example of grace in the midst of changes, very unwelcome changes!
We're now enjoying the fun of Steven relaxing in the family room watching his favorite baseball team, the Phillies. He and Heidi and I have covered every topic from the value of studying Exodus and Leviticus, to parental permission for sex education in public schools, court cases the Pacific Justice Institute has won, cities we want to visit, 5th grade physical fitness testing, you name it, good times!! Now we'll see what's for dinner, and as promised, here is my recipe for the famous "No Peekee Chicken."
1 whole, cut-up chicken (or a pack of 10 thighs, my preference)
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can (measured in the soup can) uncooked real white rice
2/3 cup evaporated milk
2 Tbs. melted butter
1 small can mushroom pieces
1/2 cup celery
1 pkg dry Lipton onion soup mix
Mix rice, soup, evaporated milk, butter, mushrooms, and celery. Spread in a 9x13 inch pan. Put chicken on top of mixture. Sprinkle dry soup on top. Cover tightly with foil and do not peek! Bake 300 degrees for 2 hours. Serves 6 to 8.

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