Showing posts from 2008

Some Stolen Pics

The Sidewalk
Someone's car is under there

Tom's truck
Credit for these pictures goes directly to our music minister's wife and her family. I stole them off her Facebook page, and if she get's mad at me for posting them I will quickly take them down.
There are some more cool pics from some friends in our adopted town at
P.S. Go to or to see our local news with more pictures. They are reporting using Skype and pictures emailed in because they just can't get out there to film it for themselves!

Snow Relief

Ok, so we left CDA yesterday at around 8 am (once our plane finally
took off). Before we got off the ground it began to snow. Since then
it snowed for the next 30 hours with more on the way. This is not
normal. There's been over 30 inches of accumulation. No one has seen
anything like it, ever. Everything is shut down. Please pray for
safety. I'll post some pictures as soon as I steal them from Fondra's
Facebook album.In the meantime we are in Mississippi with 68 degree weather. I'll
post pictures from there

Merry Christmas- from the Sandersons


The weather outside? Frightful

Rathdrum is where we live. That's NOT Celcius.

She's Showing an interest in singing

8 Christmas Gifts that will last past St. Patrick's Day

As someone who is working as a minister, I hate to waste money.  Two reasons: 1) There is never enough money to accomplish everything we want to do in ministry.  2)  Wasting money is addictive and leads to a cycle of materialism that is hard to break.  So I thought it would be good to give our readers some giving alternatives that are guaranteed to not be a waste of your gift-giving budget.  The items that made the list did so because they are great deals or because they have ETERNAL significance.

1.  Gift-a-Verse Cards
The Wycliffe translators created a spin-off company that has the goal of translating scripture into every single language on earth as quickly as possible.  Wycliffe has very strict standards of translation and often takes years to complete an authoritative translation.  In the mean time OneVerse is trying to get "good enough" translations into the hands of missionaries, pastors, and lay people for the purpose of sharing the Gospel.  You can pay for your favorit…

The View From Where I Stand -- Corrected

**This text was originally meant to appear along with the first Dec. 5th post that included a picture of Coeur d'Alene I took while hiking on Tubbs Hill.**

That is Coeur d'Alene. The two-humped mountain in the middle of the
horizon is Rathdrum mountain near my house. Up here I am by myself,
but it is impossible to feel alone. I do feel more connected to God,
but I also feel more connected to this community. It's as if I feel, by
seeing this scene, that thing which everyone is looking for. And so we
are bound to each other by our searching, by our homelessness in a
strange and beautiful world of pain and peace. We all are toiling day
after day with a lump in our throat and excitement in our chest vaguely
aware of all the possibilities--distracted by choice or by necessity,
from that something that we know needs our attention.

Another Big Potato Shot


The view from where I stand

This morning I am walking along the top of Tubbs Hill.

Potato Soup

In celebration of living in potato land, I wanted to post this yummy potato soup recipe for all of you soup lovers out there. This came from my mom-in-law's kitchen. And it's the best.

4 Large Potatoes
2/3 cup of butter
3/4 tsp of salt
4 green onions
1 1/2 cup of cheese
2/3 cup of all purpose flour
6 cups of milk
1/2 tsp pepper
12 slices of bacon
1 8 oz. carton of sour cream

Wash potatoes and bake at 400 for one hour. Let cool and scoop out pulp. Melt butter, add flour, and cook one minute on low. Add milk, cook on medium until thickened stirring constantly. Add potato pulp, salt, pepper, green onions, 1/2 of bacon, and 1 cup of cheese. Cook until heated thoroughly. Stir in sour cream. Add extra milk if necessary. Serve with remaining cheese and bacon on top.

12 servings

a magical weekend

We dashed through the streets in a two-horsed, closed-top carriage, laughing all the way.

A White Thanksgiving: Just Like the Ones I Used to Know

All of my parents' grandchildren that have been born so far.

My nephew is flirting with my wife.

They look alike, they walk alike, sometimes they even talk alike - what a crazy pair!
Cousins, two of a kind.

We had a cute war at our house all week.
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Happy Thanksgiving

Today we are thankful. Thankful for God's most precious gift to us - His Son.

We are thankful that my dad, Bennett's sister, and her three kids will sit down with us tonight and have Thanksgiving dinner.

And we are thankful for the team (the Magees) that God has allowed us to serve alongside in Idaho.

We are blessed!

Snow is Coming down the Mountain

Living near a mountain at our elevation and latitude is pretty interesting.  Right now the mountain near our house has a liberal dusting of snow covering the top half of it.  On the ground we haven't had any snow yet, but each morning we can track the progress of snow as it descends closer and closer to our roads and driveways.  After last winter you could hardly blame us if we were to feel a little uneasy at this sight.  But really, there is a reassuring calmness in the air.  It's as if by seeing the coming of the snow and winter we are satisfied that the seasons are still submissive to their Master.

People are much harder to predict than the weather.

lessons learned

It was a little over 5 years ago that God took me on the adventure of a lifetime to the Middle East. I was sharing with a new friend about that time today when she commented, "Your life must have been changed there." It was.

It was first in preparing for that trip where God revealed himself to me as Provider. I remember the day I brought in the mail to receive all of the money I needed to travel overseas ($1500). Moving to Idaho God continues to confirm His provision, and I am amazed.

It was also there that I sat in a native families home and asked myself, "What am I doing here? Is singing songs, baking bread, and teaching English really going to matter in light of eternity?" It was months later until I saw the fruit of those days when the father of the family became a believer of Christ.

There are days in Idaho (too many to name) I also wonder why are we here so far away from family and friends and what really is our purpose. Then I remember His call. I remember the …


We've been really busy in North Idaho. I haven't had time to shave or get a haircut for a while. I also haven't taken a lot of time to focus on or talk about missions. On my desk is a bright shinny (unread) new book I've had since spring called Breaking the Missional Code by Ed Stetzer. I know part of NorthStar's health depends on us having a missional mindset both in our community and around the world. It is hard to try to adjust my thinking and the thinking of those I lead when we are in an uncertain time in our church. But perhaps this is the best time of all.

Changes on the inside

This site is getting some upgrades under the hood. Now its easier to subscribe using the options in the sidebar to the right. You can even have new posts delivered to your email address using the subscription form.

There's even a headline animator you could use to promote our blog or have quick access to our latest headlines.
↑ Grab this Headline Animator Please let us know if you have any technical problems with feeds, subscriptions, or email updates.

Ministry Update

I know most of you only want to see pictures, videos, and news about our baby, but I'd like to remind you about what God is doing here through our family!

The Fall season is in full swing and winter is fast approaching. Snow has topped the mountain that looks down on our house and it's been raining for four or five days in a row. That's a big change from the summer when we had about four total days of rain.

Another interesting thing that happens in the Fall is that people come back. As the temperature drops and the skies cloud up our attendance seems to swell. This past Sunday we had pretty full house. We usually forget to count, but Tom and I agree that it felt like a "70" day, (meaning there was probably about 65 people:-). There are many new attenders that have been coming more and more frequently, and we are seeing visitors just about every week.

This past Sunday we held our first new members class this year with four people attending. This was my first…

Learning how to Sit up

L is 4 months old. She was almost 14 lbs at her appointment this week and a little over 2 feet tall. She can sit up for a little bit now but seems to fall over after too long.


my junior high school

i played in this fountain once

high school stadium

episcopal church across from my elementary school
As I survey the ground for ants
Looking for a place to sit and read
I’m reminded of the streets of my hometown
How they’re much like this concrete that’s warm beneath my feetAnd how I’m all wrapped up in my mother’s face
With a touch of my father just up around the eyes
And the sound of my brother’s laugh
But more wrapped up in what binds our ever distant livesBut if I must go
Things I trust will be better off without me
But I don’t want to know
Life is better off a mysterySo keep’em coming these lines on the road
And keep me responsible be it a light or heavy load
And keep me guessing with these blessings in disguise
And I’ll walk with grace my feet and faith my eyesHometown weather is on TV
I imagine the lives of the people living there
And I’m curious if they imagine me
Cause they just wanna leave; I wish that I could stayAnd to visit places from my past
But only for an hour or so

my little pumpkin

Today was a great day. We worshiped together with our NorthStar fam, and Bennett brought an incredible message about our purpose in the church. After church we headed to the park for a little basketball and football with some friends. I am so not athletic but had fun trying. I took the leaf pics over in the Jensen's backyard. The fall in North Idaho is amazing, and I think L thought so too. Now I'm trying to decide what she should be for Halloween. Interestingly enough, a lot of people are suggesting a pumpkin.


It is officially Fall in Coeur d'Alene.  It has been for a week or two I guess.  The trees are amazing.  I forgot how colorful they are here.  The trees where I grew up quickly went from green to brown before blowing away.  Here they are lingering on the trees in explosive yellows, oranges, and reds against the ever present background of evergreens on the surrounding mountains.  We've also been blessed with some really bright sunshiny days to light up this arborific show.

We will post some pictures soon.

Laughing Baby

God Speaks

I had a re-realization this morning.  What's a "re-realization"?  That's when you have the experience of realizing something that you already knew.  It is an encounter that feels like an epiphany, but its content is not entirely new.

This morning I re-realized that whenever you learn something about God, HE is speaking to you.  Listen, I knew that God speaks, but I guess I somehow didn't make the connection between all my times of learning and his actual voice.  It is a subtle point so let me clarify.  I sometimes get down feeling like God has been silent.  I heap the blame on myself for my lack of discipline, lack of passion or whatever excuse I can find.  I haven't felt inspired, so God must not be speaking to me.  I begin to whisper things to myself like, "I can't remember the last time I felt like God was speaking to me," or "Why won't God give me some direction by speaking to me?"

I've learned to go on in these dark seasons …

Another pic of the snowboard demo


More Information for Your Overloaded Eyes and Ears

I'm trying to be more disciplined about posting sermons from NorthStar.  You can listen online or download them at the NorthStar Sermons Update Page.

While you are there you can also check out NorthStar Church Updates Page, to get updates about the church.


Snowboarding in October

Some people in Idaho will go to great lengths to get an early start on
snowboard season.

Bad Dream?

She wasn't crying before I walked in.


Please pray for direction as we try to lead our church forward.  Ask God to direct us concerning:
The youth ministry.  We have a few who are committed.Children's ministry.  We are lacking any real programming for school-aged kids.Life Groups.  We need more leadership and more training.Preaching ministry.  I need to deliver a true word from God each week.Prayer ministry.  We need greater commitment to this from the church, and our times of prayer need to grow in depth.Missions.  We have several opportunities to be a part of some international trips.  Who should go on which ones?Evangelism.  We need to become a church that is increasingly sharing the Gospel with our community.Campus.  I feel like there needs to be outreach to the NIC campus.This list of prayer requests is a list of things that we don't know how to handle.  It is scary for me to think about, but it is exciting to wonder what God is going to do about each one of these situations.

almost 3 months old

southern miss to the top

sleeping beauty

SBDR Feed 2 Mill

Just wanted to give another plug for Southern Baptist Disaster Relief.

They've fed more than 2 million meals in hurricane affected areas in the past few weeks.

The story is on NAMB's News site.

Please pray for Glen from NorthStar church as he is somewhere in the midst of all that feeding.

Found Her Voice

We are Southern Baptist

We don't hate women.  We don't hate gays.  We are no longer racists.  We don't want to turn the country into a theocracy.  This is what we do:

Communities pounded by Hurricane Ike last weekend are still experiencing a major infrastructure crisis. Water, sewage, electricity and fuel supplies have all been impacted. Even gas stations that have fuel are unable to sell it without power. Residents, unable to heat or cool food, are limited to canned items and what they obtain from charitable groups.“These kinds of issues are the reason we have trained our units to go into an area and be self-sustaining,” said Caison. “We have our own fuel. We bring in large tanks of water and have the ability to purify water. We bring generators.”

If you don't know about Southern Baptist Disaster Relief, I suggest you get up to speed. Make a donation. If you are Southern Baptist, consider getting trained so you too will be ready to respond when disaster strikes.  

Don't ask if it is God&#…

My First Baptism

Some early videos

Newsletter woes

For those of you who are used to receiving a newsletter from us every few months, I must apologize.  We feverishly put together a newsletter last week with color photos and inspiring articles, but something weird happened to my computer.  The file is still there, but it is completely blank.  So we are back to square one.

In the mean time please feel free to email us, call us, or even Skype us.  And don't forget to check out to see what's been happening with the church.  There you can see some more recent pictures or even subscribe to church updates.  If you are on Facebook, we do have a NorthStar CDA group.  Let me know if you'd like to be invited.

Additionally, if you know people who would like to keep up with and/or pray for our ministry, please point them to these methods of keeping contact with us.  If you have never recieved a newsletter from us via US mail, just email your address to  We'll be in touch.

Baptism at the Lake

I wanted to briefly share, while it was fresh in my memory, about this past Sunday's service.

This past Sunday NorthStar did not meet in the building that we rent. Instead we met at the edge of Lake Coeur d'Alene. It was a beautiful day, sunny with a high of 75 or so with a slight warm breeze. We met on a lawn maintained by North Idaho College that overlooks the lake right on the beach. Everyone brought food, and we grilled burgers. There were about 40 people there I guess, with their lawn chairs and picnic blankets. Rich and Tom led us in worship, and we sang to the God who created the beauty around us. I preached a short message from Luke 9 about the cost of discipleship and what it means to publicly proclaim Christ. Together we prayed that our church would be commited to publicly sharing the Gospel. Then we shared a meal.

After we ate together we gathered on the shore. We baptized three people in the chilly water; all three of them adult believers fulfilling obedien…

enjoying the great outdoors

L explores the wilderness for the first time.

Sometimes it is good to get away from all the stress of sleeping, eating and fouling up diapers.

NorthStar Church: Lake Edition

L was helping to keep daddy warm.

"Hey dad, I think I see some nature over there."

RA's of Kentucky

Jana and I received a card from the RA's of FBC Morganfield, Kentucky. It is a handmade card with a printout of praying hands glued on the front.

On the inside right fold they transcribed Acts 1:8. The "M" in "my" is decorated with three crosses rising from the three points of that letter. On the lower left is a sticker with a picture of a cartoon bear catching a fish that reads, "U can do it!"

On the left fold they signed their names. Micheal adds, "Love in Christ"
Judd used a big red marker and slanted his name across the whole page. Noah and Sharbey (I think) made sure their names lined up properly along with the last guy who really needs to work on his penmanship. (I understand, my only C in grade school came in handwriting.)

I share this with you all to let you know that there is still something special about being Southern Baptist. The way we are doing church means that we are connected with a small group of boys in a small town i…


This is what we get for a halftime show. Kids playing on the field.