Greetings and Welcome!

My goal is to share encouragement, grace, and hope from God’s Word, and to brighten your day. Mission trips abroad have enlarged my heart and reminded me once again that regardless of our skin color or location we all need a savior, and His name is Jesus. I pray that my articles will lift your spirits and point you to the One who loves you most.

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This Month's Message

By Fran Caffey Sandin

On a warm July morning my husband and I visited Park City Utah’s Olympic Park just in time to marvel at young people training for the winter Olympics. I gasped watching young men and women ski down a giant high slide where they jumped off the slide and advanced airborne to a perfect long landing on special turf. Wow!

A separate area included a group of skiers practicing their high, twisting, tumbling, complicated jumps. Interestingly enough, they landed in a large pool of water with lots of bubbles to break their fall, skis and all. We saw other athletes climbing a challenging rock wall attached to the pool. A few made it almost to the top and then fell into the aqua splash zone below. Some started up the wall again. Determination seemed the goal for all.

Then we watched a film about Jim Shea, 2002 gold medal winner in the face-down Olympic luge competition in Park City. An exciting day for his family, Jim was one of the last four contestants competing for the prize. It happened to be snowing that day. He got off to a slow start because of difficulty gaining speed in the snow, but he prevailed against the odds and won the gold medal. As the National Anthem was being played, Jim Shea stood proudly on the platform wearing the Gold Medal that he had won PLUS the Gold Medal that his late grandfather had won years earlier in Olympic downhill skiing competition. Jim could not hold back the tears. His grandfather had set the example of discipline, hard work, training, and courage. Now the torch had passed to his grandson.

When I learned about this outstanding young man, I could not help but ponder the influence of grandparents. As a young girl I remember seeing my grandfather Caffey sitting in his rocking chair and reading his Bible. He seemed to enjoy it and often referred to its stories. I cannot recall all that he said, but when I think of him, that is what I remember.

My mother’s parents, Pa and Ma, lived close-by. Mother and I lived with them for two years when Dad served overseas in WWII. Ma was especially dear as she did not allow me to revel in mischief. When naughty or disobedient, I had to find a switch from a tree outside, and she knew what to do with it when I returned. Ouch! She taught me how to cook, clean, and sew. She always cared for others through sending cards or cooking a meal. I watched Ma when Pa suddenly passed away. She demonstrated the power of trusting God’s sovereignty and receiving the sufficient grace that Jesus gives. Her strong faith in the Lord, her prayers and wisdom, combined with genuine love will always be a precious heritage.

Now I am a grandparent and my greatest desire is to invest in my three grandchildren, to bless them, and encourage their walk with the Lord. Times have changed, but God’s love never changes. How thankful I am to share how faithful God has been to me. One of my favorite passages is from Psalm 145. “One generation will commend your works to another. They will tell of your mighty acts. They will speak of the glorious splendor of your majesty, and I will meditate on your wonderful works. They will tell of the power of your awesome works, and I will proclaim your great deeds. They will celebrate your abundant goodness and joyfully sing of your righteousness.”

Heavenly Father, thank you for the blessing of grandchildren. Please help us to remain consistent and strong in faith when passing the torch of Biblical hope to them. Let them see our joy and our confidence in God and in His Word. Help them discern your will when making life decisions. Let them experience the guidance of your Holy Spirit. In Jesus’ name, A-men.