Goshen News, Goshen, IN


December 24, 2012

RHONDA SCHROCK: In days we feel lost, God always knows where we are

Standing there in the light of the tree, I open it up. Little, my helper, leans forward, eager to see. I lift the protective covering, and there they are, the holy family nestled within.

One by one, I take them out and set them on the table. My little boy, named for an angel, reaches out a hand. He’s enthralled, captivated by the season and all its trappings. From trimming the tree to cutting out cookies to stringing the lights, he’s been a constant companion, a faithful shadow who refuses to miss a single thing.

Together, we arrange them in their spot by the tree. Three wisemen, bearing gifts. A shepherd, holding a lamb. A cow, a camel and another sheep. Joseph and Mary follow, carefully taking their places.

And then. With reverence, we lower Baby Jesus, the Christ Child, into His place before the assembled motley throng.

It’s a peaceful scene. Kneeling there, I feel it — a holy hush, expectant, pregnant with hope. With joy. With promise. With foreboding. For what it doesn’t show, this idyllic still life, is what was yet to come.

No hint of danger here where shepherds worshipped. No sign of darkness, of evil in the stable low. No thought of pursuit or murderous intent, not here where wisemen brought gifts and a star shone bright.

“Oh, do you know,” I nearly say it aloud, “that Egypt is coming? That Herod awaits, and one day, a cross? Do you know, strong father, young mother, what threatens your boy?”

In the quietness of my home, I can almost hear it. The clashing of swords, the howls of rage over the gentle sounds of animals, the rustle of the hay and the cry of an infant. How odd.

Odd, yes, and unexpected. For a story that began with an angel’s visit, a heavenly host and a brilliant star would not move next to Egypt, would it? What novelist would write a plot like that?

Egypt, land of ancient pharaohs, of pyramids. For a plain woodworker and his bride, just come up from the town of Nazareth, it was a foreign country, a place of strange customs, an unknown culture. Why would the story call for a stay in Egypt?

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  • GN140726 Queen Kaahumanu GLOBAL FAITHS: Hawaiians' conversion to Christianity helped women A recent trip to Hawaii to visit family drew my attention again to Hawaiian religion. Original Hawaiians are Polynesians who came to Hawaii from Tahiti, Samoa, Easter Island and other Pacific islands between 500 and 1300 A.D. These Hawaiians were polytheists who worshiped and built shrines to various nature deities. But on the big island of Hawaii they came to revere especially Pele, the fierce and violent goddess of volcanoes.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • Briefly SYRACUSEThe Book of Job presentation Aug. 1The public is invited to experience the Book of Job at a one-man dramatization by the Rev. Dave Marty Aug. 1 at 7 p.m. The event will take place in the auditorium of the Oakwood Resort Event Center, 702 E. L

    July 26, 2014

  • THE PLAIN SIDE: A hunter finds his delight in God's nature with deer There, in the grass, lies a 12-point buck that the neighbor hit with his van. You quickly estimate the deer at 170 or better. No way. You ask a few tight-lipped questions and yes, the driver affirms the direction the deer was going. He points a still

    July 26, 2014

  • PASTOR'S PEN: Try to 'make every hole count' in life It all started with my attempts to reach out to a young girl who had recently faced some difficult challenges. Ann’s grandfather had faced life-threatening illness. Now after many months of rest and recuperation, Grandpa was back home again. And though his daily regime included loads of therapy and multiple new restrictions, he was able to resume a favorite activity. He could once again coach his granddaughter’s golfing practices and encourage her as well.

    July 26, 2014

  • The value of water to corn I stumbled across some interesting information on eXtension.org about the water needs of corn.

    July 25, 2014

  • GN140725 Garden Walk THE DIRT ON GARDENING: Gardening brings pleasure year after year Gardening is about doing the things that bring you pleasure. Whether it is growing vegetables and fruit for your family’s consumption or tackling a landscape design or simply planting your favorite flowers year after year, it’s the joy and labor of love that we get while working with the soil and watching nature bring our efforts to fruition.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Red Cross in urgent need of donors

    The American Red Cross is facing a blood shortage, leading to an urgent need for donors of all blood types to roll up a sleeve and give.

    July 23, 2014

  • Vegetables need blanching before freezing Rain at the right time and cool weather is making for bountiful gardens, whether it be your own or produce that you buy at many of the local vegetable stands. While I am at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair, I know from past years, I will have many convers

    July 23, 2014

  • Briefly Translation to XTAGS failed

    July 23, 2014

  • GROUNDS FOR INSANITY: Schrock boys could add some excitement to White House EDITOR’S NOTE: Rhonda’s Schrock’s column normally appears on Mondays, but was moved this week due to fair coverage.What a wonderful time of year. As I write, a summer rain is falling. Instead of bundling up in layers, tripling my normal circumference

    July 20, 2014


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Last weekend (July 12) the Goshen Parks Department held its Kid’s Try-athlon to promote childhood fitness and this week (July 18) the new bicycle trail is open to the fairgrounds in Goshen, offering residents a healthy way to get to the annual agriculture exposition. Have you joined the local fitness movement?

Yes, I work at eating healthy and exercising
No, I am happy with my fitness level
Changing my diet and exercise frequency is a work in progress
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