Welcome! Nuestra Casa Es Su Casa ...Our house is your house

A glimpse into the life of Daniel and Jaynee Lockwood and their 12 precious blessings. Thank you for visiting; we pray that what we share here may always bring glory to our wonderful God and Saviour. May you praise the Lord with us for the great things He has done and continues to do as we serve Him sharing the gospel here in the little town of Cuidad Insurgentes, BCS Mexico. He alone is good and faithful!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Problem with blogger...

Update: Comments reappeared today :)

There is a problem with blogger's comments that has affect various blogs. We began having problems last week, and now today, we noticed that almost all the comments that have been left on the entire blog are no longer showing.
So if you have left a comment and it is not appearing, that is why. Some if not all of the comments are sent to us to moderate, but after we publish them, they are not appearing.
Hopefully the issue will be resolved soon; I do not know much about computers, but I'm sure it must be complicated. We are thankful that we are able to share with you all here through the free service blogger offers.
So don't give up writing to us/commenting in the meantime; we always love hearing from you!

Have a blessed Lord's Day!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Our Thanksgiving

We truly had the most wonderful Thanksgiving Day! I asked the Lord a couple of months ago to help me make the holidays special for our family. Being in a country where Thanksgiving Day is no different than any other day of the year, the temperature still feels like summer, and there is not a pumpkin to be found, it is sometimes hard to not get homesick for our homeland. It is very important to us that our children learn of their American heritage...that they speak English and that they also learn of God's providence in the founding of our country. We spent the past several weeks talking about American history, talking about why we celebrate Thanksgiving Day, and reading stories of the Pilgrims. As we read those Pilgrim stories each morning, I knew this was really going to be a special Thanksgiving. As we talked about how they left their familiar land, their homes, family and friends and gave up/sold most of their possessions, we understood. As we talked about them first living in Leiden, Holland and the culture/surroundings/language being so foreign to them, we understood. When we talked of how they had times of sickness and little, we understood. When we talked about them not having homes yet to live in when they first arrived, we understood. And when we talked about how the Lord provided and cared for them, we too understood. All week, we talked about Thanksgiving Day and all the things we would do to celebrate. Normally, our plans go only somewhat as planned...we have found that 12 children develops in one much flexibility and patience! :) But today went just according to our plans and what a blessed day it was!

I woke up very early. I told Daniel that I was getting up because I needed to get the cinnamon rolls in the oven and baked so I could start the turkey. That was true, but that is not really why I was up so early...for as long as I can remember, I have never been able to sleep in on any special day...Thanksgiving, Christmas, my birthday, Easter etc... I'm just too excited and I don't want to miss any of it (I can never go to bed early those days either because I don't want them to end :)). I assumed that once I "grew up" I would outgrow that, but I never have (or maybe I'm not grown up yet :) ). Elijah was already up and Benjamin got up a few minutes later. We made our special homemade cinnamon rolls and by the time we'd finished, the sun was rising and so was the rest of the family.

Everyone got dressed, did their morning chores, and then we sat down to hot sweet rolls and peppermint tea. We ate breakfast, I read about the first Thanksgiving, Daniel read the Bible and then we talked about what we'd read. After breakfast, we cleaned up and then Daniel had to run an errand in the next town over, so he took some of the little ones along for the ride.

The older ones and I got to work in the kitchen. The girls and I had made the pies the day before (2 pumpkin and 2 apple) and took a quart of cream and turned it into butter. I soaked the turkey in brine the night before and it was baking in the oven. Three hours later, we had a giant pot of mashed potatoes, gravy, oven roasted asparagus (which was given to us the night before by Hno. Juan...a true answer to prayer as I didn't have a vegetable for the meal :)), homemade rolls, stuffing, and jello salad. I was so excited that I was able to make everything except for the pumpkin pie and cranberry sauce from ingredients I found here! Deb and Joel brought me the pumpkin and cranberry when they came to visit (thank you!).

Abigail and Isaiah set the table. We didn't have much in the way of Thanksgiving decorations, but Abigail and I pulled this and that out of the cupboard and Abigail arranged it all.

While we waited for the turkey to finish cooking, the children made our tradional apple turkeys. A dear friend sent me minimarshmallows so we could continue to do this fun activity together. Some of the turkeys looked more like porcupines; Noah said his was like a space ship ???. But as I sat feeding little Samuel while everyone worked away, I listened. The best part was hearing all laughter, chattering, singing, and a few funny sound effects that only boys can make. I wish I could have recorded it and saved it forever. How richly blessed I am to get to hear those sweet sounds every day!

It was finally time to eat and what a bountiful feast we had! Uncle Samuel and Carlos were with us for the day too. Then everyone helped clean up. Daniel washed most of the dishes and what a job that was! He does them so much better than I do. It would never dawn on me to unscrew the handles to my lids and clean under them. Last Thanksgiving, he washed them also as I was on bedrest pregnant with little Samuel. But this year, he just must really love me :)


After clean up we all went outside to the vacant lot next to our house and played kickball until dark. It's great to have enough in just our family to easily make two teams. We played until almost dark; I think I'll be sore tomorrow :)

I put my camera down to play kick ball, and forgot to pick it back up to take pictures of the rest of the evening; I was having too much fun. :)

The children took their showers, got on their pj's and cleaned their rooms. We gathered around the table to all share what we were especially thankful for this year. Some of the children had written out what they were thankful for in school last week and they read their papers outloud. Then we pulled out the guitars and mandolin and sat around the piano to sing together for another hour. We ended the evening with some pie and icecream, a time of prayer, and then it was off to brush teeth and head to bed. Timothy and Elijah are still up as they helped clean up after dessert and our now watching a creation scientist dvd with Daniel, Uncle Samuel and Carlos. Elijah pops over here every few minutes to tell me something else he learned from the presentaion. :) The day was filled with several calls from family back in the states which was an extra treat as well. It truly was a very special day. I hope you all too had a wonderful day of thankfulness and fellowship!

The Lord is so good, so merciful, and so faithful.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Something close to my heart

Daniel and the oldest 2 boys are out in the village today preaching, the other children are outside playing, and I'm so very thankful.
I woke up grumpy this morning...I really did. For one, I've been sick with a nose that won't stop running, a cough that likes to keep me up at night, a weepy eye and often a pounding head. Then yesterday, something happened...someone did something...that I let bother me. And slowly that "bother" grew into anger and then I was just downcast all day. I continued to go over in my mind how wrong this certain thing was and how hurtful it was etc...
Have you ever felt that way? Have you ever known that what you were feeling/thinking was wrong? I knew my attitude stunk, I was miserable, I'm sure I wasn't great at covering up how I felt, and I just continued to feel that way because I just couldn't get away from it.
As I went to bed last night, I asked the Lord to forgive me for my anger and to help me see things the way He does. And then I went to sleep and woke up grumpy!
I got ready for the day and sat down to read my Bible and pray and I knew I needed to go again to the Lord and ask for His help.
I wrote in my journal briefly what was bothering me, how I was feeling, and then asked the Lord to please change me. I knew He would, but I didn't think it would happen as quickly as it did.
Before it was time to make breakfast, I felt so clean and happy. And that thing that had bothered me so...well, I honestly thought how silly I was to let it bother me. And I thought how terrible it was for me to be so sour and bitter over it!
It seems that is how it is with bitterness. Ephesians 4:31 says, "Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamor, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice." It seems like the things that cause marriages to crumble, hatred and anger to thrive, relationships to suffer and die often stem from a little root of bitterness that if it isn't quickly weeded out and "put away", it grows and grows, and reaches farther and deeper than ever.
It doesn't have to even be a grave evil that causes one to be bitter. Just something or someone that is close to you that hurts you personally.
Someone once said that a good way to know if you are bitter towards someone is that if you can remember word for word the conversation/hurt that took place between you. You've probably gone over it so many times in your mind that it is stuck in there. And when you recall that conversation, it only musters up feelings of anger, saddness, hurt, envy, discouragement etc...
Oh, I've been guilty of that so many times! What a miserable and sad way to live! Yesterday, when I was stewing all day over some little thing, I was not changing the situation nor was I the least bit happy.
Amy Carmichael once said something that I have never forgotten.
“If a sudden jar can cause me to speak an impatient, unloving word, then I know nothing of Calvary’s love, for a cup brimful of sweet water cannot spill even one drop of bitter water, however suddenly jolted."
What is inside "my cup" is what will come out when something "upsets" me. If I am full of the love, joy, and grace of the Savior, that is what will spill forth, but if I am full my selfish desires, lusts, and bitterness, that is what will come out. It's not the jarring of the cup that determins what is spilled out, but what was in the cup to begin with.
So what is one to do?
Ephesians 4:32, "And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God fo Christ's sake hath forgiven you."
I prayed to accept Jesus Christ as my Saviour at a young age. I grew up in a Christian home, was faithful in church, and over all, to all who saw me, "did" all the right things. I don't remember a day when I did not believe the gospel. But it wasn't until a couple years ago that I saw myself as truly deserving hell for my own sins. I saw how dirty I was. How filthy my heart was! How proud, how selfish, and how much I did for the praise of man rather than God.
How I cried for the mercy and forgiveness of God! And how very thankful I was to know that Jesus Christ's sacrifice cleanses me from all my sins! God in His great mercy saved me!
I didn't have to do anything; I couldn't do anything to make up for how I was or what I had done. All I did was repent, ask for forgiveness, and believe.
So now, when one wrongs me, knowing what I truly deserve for my wrong toward God, how can I but forgive and give grace to another?
I still often fail and follow my own ways, but our patient, loving Lord is always waiting for us to run back to Him.
With Thanksgiving here, I have thought much on all I have for which to be thankful. I pick up baby Samuel each morning and my heart swells with love and thankfulness. I held my sweet cross-eyed Eliseo in my arms in front of the mirror today and could almost cry for how much I love him. Nehemiah wiped his snotty nose on my skirt a bit ago as he ran over to hug me and I again feel so thankful.
My 3 girls received a gift in the mail this morning...matching jumpers. How happy and thankful they were. I thought of the family who sent the gift and thought of what a blessing they have been to us in helping us grow closer to the Saviour. I'm so thankful for those the Lord brings into our lives to point us to Him.
We are taking a break from our regular routine this week to do special things for Thanksgiving; I watched my 4 middle boys run around exploring their "new land" and "trading with the Indians for furs" this afternoon. I'm so thankful for those who came before and sacrificed/suffered so we could have freedom in America.
I kissed Daniel and my 2 oldest boys good bye after breakfast as they headed out to preach for the day in the villages. Daniel prayed with me before they left and I was just so thankful. Thankful to be his wife, thankful and proud to see my two boys working with their Daddy, and so thankful that the gospel...the wonderful gospel which brings so much joy and freedom is being preached today here in Mexico.
Oh, the Lord is so good and faithful. How He loves you and me!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

All dressed up....

...and ready to go to church!

"I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the Lord." Ps. 122:1
How wonderful it is to begin each week in the house of the Lord together! What a wonderful Saviour we have!
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Friday, November 20, 2009

Thank you

I so enjoyed reading the comments from the last post. And know that while if I had the time I would love to respond to many of you, I do pray for those who share their burdens here. As one commenter shared from the Scriptures, "Weep with those who weep". The longer I live, the more my heart hurts with the hearts of others who are hurting.
Thank you for sharing with me what the Lord has been teaching you. I have often told Daniel that being in the ministry, you are often the one who is looked to for helping, encouraging, or guiding another. And how often I don't feel like I'm near worthy enough for the task. I would love to just "sit at the feet" of another and learn. But I love sharing with others what the Lord has done and continues to do in me. How loving, good, gracious, merciful and ever so faithful is our God.

This morning, we got up extra early and headed out to watch the Revolution Day Parade here. As we are on the verge of Thanksgiving, I always take the month of November to read stories and talk with our children about our American History and the providential hand of God in the lives of those men and women who founded our country. How it always excites me to read the true stories of those who sacrificed so much to begin a new nation...one founded on God's Word.
Mexico's history has always been sad to me in comparison to our American history. But I have 4 children that have been born here, a husband who is now a Mexican citizen himself, and 8 other children who know no other home and I am truly proud to be a part of this country as well.
Daniel and the boys are out working, the little ones are taking an early nap as we got up so early to watch the parade, Ben and Beka are working on school work they didn't finish yesterday and Abigail and I are cleaning, cooking and washing. Daniel, Uncle Samuel and Brother Carlos painted my laundry room and hooked up a sink in there for me...it's still not all back together, but I'll post pictures when they are done. Tonight we are having a sing at church. We plan on making a big bon fire in the back field, sharing lots of goodies and hot drinks, and bringing our hymnbooks and voices to lift up before the Lord under His stars. I wish you could all come join us.
Thank you again for sharing with me. Please do so anytime! Have a blessed day in our Lord.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

What has the Lord been teaching you?

I don't think there is hardly a week that goes by in which I don't think of things the Lord is teachng me/working in me. Is that the same for you? Trials have been a very good teacher and worked much patience and driven me to the Saviour; His precious Word convicts, brings light, and renews the mind; the example and testimony of others encourages; and the Spirit's still small voice is so firm yet gentle.

Noah is feeling so much better. The infection is gone and he finishes his antibiotics tomorrow. Thank you for praying, caring, and for the advice.

The children are just growing so quickly. We were talking together today about how we have been created to glorify God in everything forever. How often do I think of that? How would that one thought alone sometimes change they way I say something or what I do or don't do?

I've been teaching the children how that whatever we do, we need to do heartily as unto the Lord. How we need to seek to please the Lord rather than man. I appreciate how well they do their chores as they love to work with mommy and daddy and just beam as we praise them for a job well done. But I want them to do their best for the Lord because they love and want to please Him...that way they will work well even when nobody else is looking.
Whenever I teach my children something, it often pricks at my heart along with or before theirs. Many jobs I tend to do half heartedly because they aren't my favorite thing to do and nobody notices if they aren't done well. So little by little I've been reminding myself of how the Lord wants us to do all for Him, and I've found great joy and unexpected blessings in putting my heart into some formally "mundane" tasks.

The morning weather has gotten a bit chilly. Well, for us "Mexicans" a 50 degree morning just calls for quilts, hot tea or coffee, warm clothes, and extra snuggles. Having no cooling or heating in the house makes us very in tune with the temperatures.:) By 10 am it's back in the 80's, but just having these cool evenings/mornings just makes everything so cozy and brings lots of smiles.
More and more, Mexico is becoming my home. Many missionaries will tell you that often the holidays are difficult times as you tend to get "homesick" especially those first years on the field. We'll be here...home....this Christmas. I realized how much the Lord has answered a prayer I prayed through many sobs and tears years ago...to help me feel at home here...to help me truly love the people here...their culture, food, language, landscape, and all the other things that were so very strange and foreign to me. And they are all now like dear friends...ones whom I get that homesick pit in my stomach when I think of losing any one of them.

It gets dark so early now; the children are spending the evenings pulling out games and toys that hadn't left ther cupboards/boxes for quite some time. This week I began leaving some of my evening work and sitting down to play checkers, build with Lincoln logs, or play trains. I know that when the children are grown and gone, I'll never wish I'd cleaned better or spent more time at my desk...but I will cherish those memories that we spent playing, talking, and laughing together...and I want to have lots of memories.
Someone is getting around a bit on his feet...with some help :) Something the Lord really convicted me about this past year is how much time I spend on the computer. It is so easy to spend 30 minutes reading blogs, recipes, answer emails etc...; it feels like you just sat down and a good part of the hour has past. I'm not very capable of double tasking when I'm on the computer either...I really can't think of anything other than what I'm reading or typing. I love really being with my children...attending to their needs, hearing their every cries, listening whole heartedly to their every story, trying to answer their every question...oh they have so many! :) I am very thankful for the ablilty to communicate with friends and family through the computer, but want to be careful to not let something good replace what is best.

Hospitality...I've been thinking a lot about that lately. I don't think I'm very good at it, but how I want to be! The Mexican people are so very gracious, hospitable, and offer you whatever they have no matter how little it is. I want my children to learn the joy of having others in our home, serving them, fellowshipping with them, making them feel "at home" and all the blessings it brings.
Monday we invited over several families from our church for supper. I prayed that morning asking the Lord to use us to bless these brothers and sisters in Christ and that it would be an enjoyable evening for everyone. And it truly was! The adults ate and fellowshipped around the table for 3 hours while the children played outside and inside together.
Most of the conversation around the table centered around Jesus Christ and God's Word. These dear families who did not even know Him a year or two ago. Praise the Lord for His work!!

I would love to do this every week!
So before I head to bed, I just wanted to share a few things the Lord has been teaching me. What has the Lord been teaching you? I would love to hear about it! He is so faithful and good!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Back to the doctor...

Quick post just asking you to pray for Noah (age 5) and little Samuel (8 months today!). Ever since the hurricane, we seem to have battled with infections in the skin. I don't know if it is related to the hurricane or not; it just seems like that was when we first saw them. I mentioned Susannah and Eliseo having one a couple months ago. We've had several others since then. They are filled with infection and extremely painful. :( We've taken them to the doctor here in town and were given antibiotics. But they continue to pop up. We'll have a week or two with nothing and then someone will wake up with one.
Noah's forearm right below his elbow has one right now. His arm is very swollen, the skin tight, hot and red, and he can't move his arm much. The same day, little Samuel got one on the top of his head. We took them into town today to see the pediatrician. He started them on another antibiotic and told us to keep a close eye on Noah's arm especially as if it goes deeper (into the bone?) it will get complicated. If he hasn't improved in 3 days, we need to bring him back to be checked.
Please pray that they feel better soon and the infection goes away. Noah is so shy and his arm hurts so badly; when he got home from the doctor, Elijah asked him what the doctor did. Noah replied, "He had to put a big hard thing under my arm for a long time" (a thermometer :) ).
He's running a low grade fever and has been tired. Yesterday, I made lunch and called everyone to the table. We sat down to pray and I realized someone was missing. After a quick roll call, I went to look for Noah. He was on the couch. I said, "Noah, don't you want to come eat lunch?" He said, "I don't want to eat lunch until I'm done being tired." Sweet boy :) He slept a couple hours and then ate. He's very happy that it's not on the arm that he writes with because he loves doing school.
We are so thankful to be over the flu. And my kidney infection seems to be much, much better. Time for family Bible time; the children are all bathed, smell and look so clean and I am wanting some snuggles! :) Thank you for praying along with us.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Life here is so short

Busy weekend! I enjoy Saturdays. Daniel and the older boys are gone most of the day as they work in preparation for the Sunday services. And while I do miss them, I always look forward to spending special time with the younger ones.

Saturday is our house cleaning day. In addition to our regular work, we do extra things like washing/changing sheets, organizing cupboards or shelves, washing windows, sweeping under couches/beds, etc...

I can usually find something for everyone to do and we have fun working together. This week, we organized/dusted the book shelf and the sheer delight when I told the little ones they could really take every single book off the shelf.

By the evening, the house and yards are clean, and I just love the feeling of everything being clean and in order as we start a new week. :) Of course it doesn't stay that way for long, so thus, we have our cleaning day every Saturday. At the end of the day, after everyone has showered and is ready for bed, we always have a special supper that we all vote on during the day and then usually color or do a craft together.

Early Sunday morning, we got a phone call from Hna. Tola telling us that her husband had passed away during the night. Hna. Tola and her grandson Ivan have been so faithful to the Lord. They both came to Him and were baptized together shortly after the church was started.
Tola's husband had been an invalid for years. He was only 63 and how Hna. Tola cared for him though it was so very difficult. And now she called us in tears letting us know he had passed away.

Here in Mexico, they do funerals different than we do in the states. After someone dies, their body is prepared by the funeral home and then taken back to the house. For the next 24 hours, round the clock, friends and family come to see the body and sit with/mourn with those who are mourning. The following day, they take the body to the grave yard to be buried.

Sunday Evening, we held our evening service at Hna. Tola's house. It was like a small funeral service. The family appreciated it so much. It was very difficult as Tola's husband had a very hard life of sin and while Daniel's witnessed to him on a number of occasions, he always rejected Christ. Only God knows his heart, but how it urges us to continue on sharing the gospel for the time is so short.

Daniel was able to share the gospel that evening during a short message as there were several family members there who do not know Christ. That evening Daniel and I stayed with Tola and Ivan until after midnight.

The burial was scheduled to be early the next morning and Tola wanted Daniel to come before they took the body and sing some hymns with everyone.

The boys (my early birds...sorry girls, you are good at many things, but getting up extra early is still not one of them :) ) helped me mix up some muffins and oatmeal for a quick breakfast.

We then all piled into the truck to head back to Tola's house and then to the grave site.

Funerals always make one think about life, the brevity of it, and what is truly important. I don't remember seeing a lot of death in the USA, but here even in our little town, it is a frequent occurance. Please pray for Tola and Ivan as their hearts ache with the loss of their husband/grandpa.

We didn't get back home until around Noon. While the children did the morning chores we hadn't had time for in the morning, I had the girls help me mix up some bread for a late lunch. We then worked on school for a while while waiting for lunch to cook.

While I spent much time thinking of and praying for Tola and Ivan yesterday, I spent much time also thanking the Lord for the gift of life and the privilege we have to share His love, mercy and grace through Jesus Christ here in Mexico. As we sat down to eat, I again thought that I really don't deserve to be so blessed...I am just so happy! :) God is so good and faithful

Thursday, November 05, 2009


The children continue to do better. They are up and about more and starting to eat more too. Their fevers seem to come and go...a day with no fever and the next day it's back...lots of coughing still. So we're keeping our days simple and encouraging lots of rest and fluids. But doing so much better than a week ago.
Thank you for your prayers. How thankful I am that we can always go to the Lord who loves to hear and answer our prayers.
Today we spent the day in the van; we had to go down to La Paz (the capital) so I could sign the paperwork for my new visa. Daniel does all of the work (filling out the paperwork, getting the necessary items required to apply, turning it all in, paying the fees at the bank etc...) and when it's all done, I just sign :) Normally we get an early start, but with everyone not feeling 100%, we took it easy this morning and left later.
It was a long day and the children did so good...if only they could have all coughed in harmony. :) We are so thankful to be back home safe this evening; how gracious is the Lord's protective hand.
And speaking of thankfulness, here are some pictures of what we've been working on the past couple days.

Oh, so thankful I am!

In everything give thanks for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. I Thess. 5:18