Thursday, December 31, 2009

Great Pastors Retreat!

Thank you 1st Baptist of Worland, WY, for allowing us to enjoy a pastors retreat in Billings, MT last weekend with our wives. We really had a wonderful time as a staff to reflect,plan, joke, laugh, enjoy each other's company, and of course worship together.

On Saturday of last week, we all piled into a Suburban SUV (courtesy of Mike St. Clair, thank you Mike!) and drove off to Billings. Of course the ride was rowdy with conversation and with Pastor Shaun at the wheel. Mike, Shaun did take good care of your car! After we got to the hotel, The C'mon Inn, we relaxed a while next to the koi fish water ponds and waterfall in the lobby. It was off to take a stroll on the town after that. We also were able to enjoy a wonderful dinner as a staff at the Olive Garden. Then it was back to the hotel. Uno was a fun game to play at the tables next to the pond. We played until late....laughing just about the whole time.

The next morning, Sunday, we were up, got ready, had a nice breakfast at the hotel, and then we were off to worship together at the Harvest Church. What a huge congregation! But you know...we were all commenting after worship on how we really missed our congregation back at 1st "B". Of course...I'm not just saying this...I prefer our worship at 1st "B" too, not to mention Pastor Shaun's teaching. Worshiping away from our congregation did make us appreciate our home church even more! I can't wait to worship at 1st "B" again this Sunday, starting off the new year right!

After worship, we enjoyed a great burger in town down the street, a stretch from the church we went to. Then off course, we had to go to the mall, courtesy of the wives.

All in all, we had a wonderful relaxing retreat as a staff. I feel refreshed and ready to start the new year of worship to our Lord. I believe the Lord will bless 1st Baptist richly in 2010, and that we will see the Lord do great things. The staff is rejuvenated, and ready to serve. Thank you once again for the opportunity that you gave us after Christmas.

Thank you once again to the St. Clairs for allowing us to use their vehicle. It was very comfortable. Thank you, Dan Hart, for teaching in place of Pastor Shaun to allow him to get away. Thank you to the Craft family for taking over leading worship to allow a break for me.

I look forward to worshiping with you this new year. God bless you!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Wonderful Christmas and Christmas Eve Service!

Hello everyone. I hope that all of you had a wonderful Christmas, celebrating the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ! I hope that Jesus was truly the reason for the season in your house.

As a family we really enjoyed each other's company in celebration. Besides opening presents, all of the Christmas lights, and all that is a part of Christmas, it was great to sing Happy Birthday to Jesus and have a cake for Him too. It was truly a great Christmas time with our family and of course our church family at 1st Baptist.

If you were in attendance at our Christmas Eve Service, it was wonderful! The 1st Praise Christmas Choir brought worship for us in presenting "Light of the World"! The choir consisted of several of our congregation's members. It was an honor to bring praise to our Lord! Pastor Jess led us in the meaning of the advent candles as he, Heather, and little Kyston lit the candles in remembrance. Pastor Shaun brought a fantastic Christmas message. I don't know how a person could not accept and know Christ after hearing it! We then sang "Silent Night" as each of the 300+ in attendance raised our lit candles. We pray and hope that Christ was honored that evening.

I thank the Lord for blessing the Christmas Eve service. I also want to thank Wendy Compton for her ideas and assistance in "Light of the World". A special thanks goes out to Keith Compton for stepping up and narrating the Christmas story in the production. Hats off to Roger and Jane Pomeroy for organizing and feeding all the hungry musicians for the production as we prepared to serve in this Christmas cantata.

Blessings to all and have a wonderful New Year!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Wow! Fridged Temperatures in Worland, WY!

Wow! I am truly amazed at how the temperatures and changes in our weather have happened so quickly! We have had some pretty frigid, icy, snowy weather hit us hard in Worland, WY! This morning I left the house with the temperature at -27 BELOW zero! It sure is different from the "sweatshirt" weather from just a week ago. The cold is early this year!

You know that it's cold when:

1) The hair in your nostrils crystallize when you breath.

2) Your mustache freezes with icicles when you are walking across campus at work at the boys' school.

3) The heater in your 1962/1965/1968 Volkswagen Bug starts to work (a little) when you get to work AFTER your commute.

4) The condensation from your breath freezes on the inside of your windshield as you are driving down the road and needs to be scraped.

5) You drive to work with layered clothing, an arctic jacket, gloves, etc.

6) The coffee pot is already empty before you arrive at work.

7) You about break your neck in the parking lot slipping on ice trying to reach warmth.

8) Your hands are burning when you take off your gloves to try to get your keys in or out of your front pocket.

9) Not a complete list....but just my experience today.

Hey.....I know that the temperatures are cold outside....however...let's remember to be warm hearted to one another with Christ's love. Winter is here even before the season actually begins! Please be careful! Here we go! Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Welcome to December!

Wow! December already? I hope that all of you had a pleasant and joyful Thanksgiving. Now we turn to all the activities, programs, etc. of December. I just can't believe that the Christmas season is finally here....AND we really want to remember the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ!
First of all, I am pleased with the progress of the Christmas Eve Worship Service music at First Baptist. We have a good group of folks from our church that have been participating in our rehearsals each Sunday evening. We're not quite ready for the program, but I am very excited with the quick progress that we're making....and I know that the program will bring glory to God!

Student Ministries from First "B" will be heading out this Friday to Billings, Montana for "Acquire the Fire". The kids will be charged up with a challenge to share their faith in Christ and also enjoy being a part of worship with several bands. They will also get to see Sanctus Real in concert among other great Christian performers. My sons Caleb and Jacob are really excited about going this year. Me? I'm staying home this year to spend time with our youngest son, Josh. I will enjoy this time!

Speaking of the my family.....I can't believe we found our Christmas tree already this year. Last year was a goofy Christmas tree search. We were so busy with all the Christmas activities last year that Sandra and I never found the time to get a tree until the last minute. We ended up getting a very small artificial "Charlie Brown" Christmas tree. It was pretty pathetic looking. And then we got... Jess and Heather's "used" Christmas tree when they left to California for Christmas break. After all was said and done... I thought, "Number one.....the season is about Jesus! Then I remembered my own father was so poor that when his family celebrated Christmas in Texas, they cut down some sagebrush and then decorated it with aluminum foil...some from chewing gum wrappers!" You know....we all have so much to be thankful for. Remembering this really taught me a lesson.

This brings me to a conclusion...even though I could write a whole lot more. As we enter deeper into December and the Christmas season, let's not forget what Christmas is all about. We can get caught up in all of the hustle and bustle. We can get distracted by the decorations, commercialism, and even the fact that we may be struggling financially because of the economy. Ultimately...let's remember JESUS CHRIST...Son of God! Let's not take Christ out of Christmas! He came, born as the Christ child. He grew into manhood, spreading His Gospel message and performing miracles. He died on the cross for our sins! He was raised from the dead on the third day! Praise God! He's coming again!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Psalm 100: 4 " Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, [And] into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, [and] bless His name."

Wow! I can't believe how long it has been since I have written on my blog. It has been a very BUSY fall season, but I must slow down enough to reflect on how thankful I am. First I must say Happy Thanksgiving to all! We need to all remember what Thanksgiving is all about. It's more than just eating great food with family and friends and football. We need to reflect on the many blessings that our Lord had poured upon us. He provides all of our needs. He is our SALVATION! He is our COMFORT! He is and always will be! Thank you GOD! Let us rejoice in Him and bless His name!

Here is just a list of things on my mind that I am truly thankful for:

1) My God: The Father. The Son. The Holy Spirit

2) My wonderful wife, Sandra.

3) My family.

4) My church family. Thank you for all of your blessing 1st "B"!

5) My Pastor. Thank you Shaun and Jodi for all of your love and leadership!

6) A roof over my head: housing

7) Food and clothing.

8) Wonderful Wyoming- Especially our community of Worland.

9) Music!

10) Football!

11) Fishing!


Thank you God for your many this Thanksgiving may we reflect on each and every blessing.....and continue the reflection beyond the holiday.


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Light of the World!

Wow! I can't believe that Christmas will be here before you know it! You know what that means....we look forward to taking part in the Christmas Eve program at 1st "B". In order to have another very successful program to honor Jesus Christ, we need your help. If you like to sing and would like to be a part of the mini-musical, called "Light of the World", we would love to have you. We had well over 20 people involved last year and would love to go beyond that number this year.

The first rehearsal will be Sunday, November 1, 2009 at 6:00 pm. The rehearsals will be every Sunday at 6:00 pm after that until the Christmas Eve program in December. You will receive a practice CD and book. The practices usually last no more than an hour.

We look forward to singing with you in this exciting Christmas musical. It is always a blessing to be a part of it. What an opportunity to present the Gospel message...the TRUE reason for the season!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

One Month to Live!

What an incredible campaign! What would you do if you had one month to live?

Well, there is no time like the present to be challenged by Christ! Please join me in this great effort to live a life for the Lord with no regrets! The challenge of "One Month to Live" is to live passionately, love completely, live humbly, and leave boldly for the Lord Jesus Christ.

I know I can pray more, study more of God's Word, tell others about Him, show more of God's love, and leave a greater impact and legacy in this world for Christ when He calls me home. Lord God, give us the strength by the Holy Spirit to do so. Amen.

Colossians 1:9-12
"For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing [Him], being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy; giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light."

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Student Ministries at First "B"!

Proverbs 22:6 "Train up a child in the way that he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it."
A lot of us as parents have read and heard this Proverb from the Word of God. How important it is to teach our children about God. I totally agree with many others that it is the parent's responsibility to train up our children and teach them about God from His Word, to pray with them, and to model our Christian walk before them. It is also my prayer that each parent has the opportunity to help lead their children to the Lord. I am so thankful to God that I have had that opportunity with my own boys.

On top of that, I think it is very important to have our children involved with youth group. I am so thankful for Student Ministries at 1st Baptist Church. My brother-in-law, Pastor Jess Rollema, is doing a terrific job with our youth, grades 6-12. When our children are involved with Student Ministries, they are taught even more about God's Word. They are able to fellowship with other Christians and also invite students that may have not made a decision for Christ yet to Wednesday Night for worship/fellowship/ Bible study.
Tonight kicks off the new Student Ministries Wednesday Night youth group called "The Well". We come to the well to help quench our thirst for Jesus Christ every Wednesday night at 6:30 p.m. I am looking forward to seeing the youth and being able to participate with them again this year in this worship venue.
Please be in prayer for this ministry again this year. God has been so good...and we are looking forward to what He has in store for the youth and staff again this season.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Arena Football Championship!

Back-to-School shopping was great last Saturday in Billings, Montana! Why? I didn't have to be a part of it!!! wife let me off the hook, and my pastor and good friend Shaun Matako and I went to the Indoor Football League Championship between the Billings Outlaws and the River City Rage...instead!

At Rimrock Arena in Billings, the crowd was going nuts ranting and raving over the Outlaws! Horns were blowing! Guns were going off! About 8,000 people were in attendance! The game was great, with a lot of fast paced football action! Hard players going over the walls....forget the pads.....Yeah!!!! In the end..the Billings Outlaws won the championship, 71 to 62.
It was great for Shaun and me to get away a little and blow off a little steam! Thank you Jodi and Sandra for letting us get away! We had a great time! Ask Shaun if he will be chewing gum at the next sporting event;-)

Friday, August 14, 2009

A Big Thank You!

As some of you may know.....Sandra, the boys, and I got back from our Idaho vacation with family. While I was gone I truly missed our congregation and of course worshiping with everyone.

I want to say a special thank you to Roger Pomeroy for taking over, and leading worship last Sunday while I was gone. I also want to say thanks to the rest of the 1st Praise Worship Team, for working hard to keep things going while I was gone on vacation. I heard that you did great last Sunday. You are incredible to work with, and I know that the Lord has truly blessed you and given you many gifts and talents. I am so proud of the fact that you have chosen to give back these gifts to the Lord.

I am encouraged to know that worship can and will continue regardless of who leads. God is our Leader. God is in control. We worship a Mighty God. It's not about us.....It's all about the Lord! Thank you once again, team, for allowing my family and me to go on vacation. You are so wonderful!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Thanks For Your Support!

Thank you so much for coming out to the Washakie County Fair and supporting the young people in our community, including my sons and the other kids from 1st Baptist Church. It was great to see everyone out and enjoying themselves.

It was especially great to see the involvement and support by those that are apart of 1st Baptist Church. Several of our 1st Baptist Church kids placed and won awards in many different categories in livestock, arts and crafts, woodworking, photography, baking, etc. Great job kids and thank you leaders for lending your helping hands in this effort each and every year. God bless all of you! See you in church!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Washakie County Fair!

It's so hard to believe that it is time for the Washakie County Fair again! The weather is hot. It's summer time. I guess that's the sign that it's happening here in Worland again.

My sons are walking their 4-H projects (goats and lambs). Sandra is busily assisting my sons as they get their animals all show clipped and polished. I don't know how my wife does it all .....what a support....especially when I'm at work. However, there is so much more that needs to get done. Sometimes there's just not enough time in a day.
There are many kids in our community that are hard at work in their preparation for this big event. I truly hope that each and every one of you will go and support our kids as they present their 4-H and FFA projects for this worthwhile event that we call the Washakie County Fair. It truly teaches responsibility and sportsmanship. If you get the opportunity, go out and support them at their event shows. The Garzas would love to see you there...especially mid-week, next week.

Monday, July 20, 2009

I Love the Fall! Can't Wait Until It's Here!

You know...I love the way that the Lord created the seasons! It is amazing how the changes happen in each one of them...the weather, temperature, plants, animal migrations, etc. I like the summer time, don't get me wrong, but my favorite time of the year is the FALL! Especially in Worland, Wyoming! Here is a list of things that I love about my favorite season....and I can't wait until it gets here!:

1) Football Season! NFL, College Football, High School Football, Middle School Football, and now Youth Rec. League (Full Contact) Football!

2) Fantasy Football League!

3) My kids excited about school getting started.

4) Getting to meet my kids' new teachers.

5) Student Ministries kickoff!

6) Sweatshirt and jacket weather!
7) Hayrides!

8) Harvest and harvest festivals....especially the get together playing music at my in-laws' ranch! Good food! Good friends! Good music! Good times! Thanksgiving being around the corner......mmmmm pumkin pie!

9) Surprise early snow!...especially in October!

10) Getting a preview of the Christmas music that will be in the Christmas Eve event at 1st Baptist!

11) MLB Baseball playoffs and the World Series!

12) Sitting and goofing around a fire on a chilly evening!

13) Bundling up and watching Worland Warrior Football on Friday nights!

14) Hot Chocolate!

15) Saving money on cooling bills, but not really using the heater too much yet.

16) The changing of the leaves....not having to mow the lawn....not really having to shovel snow yet either.

17) People returning from summer vacations...and packing out the church!

18) I could go on and on!

Lord, thank you for the seasons! I love what You do with summers, but I can't wait to see the next FALL! Until's okay to dream about it right?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Rocks Springs Student Ministries Mission!

Well, the Student Ministries Team is on the road again. This time they are on their way to Rock Springs, Wyoming to help a congregation build a church in that community. Led by Jess Rollema, our Student Ministries Pastor, the team is on the road as I'm writing this. They have a wonderful opportunity to not only build this church building, but to also minister to others in the community about the Lord Jesus Christ.

I am excited that my oldest son, Caleb, is also a part of this team. He and Marshall Blom were excited to take their guitars and worship music from our church files to lead worship while on this missions trip. I am very proud of these guys for taking the initiative to want to worship with the rest of the team during their week.

The rest of First "B" was blessed by a spaghetti lunch fund raiser for this mission trip, today after worship. The kids did a great job of serving the congregation with the leadership of Pastor Jess Rollema. Pastor Shaun and Jodi did a wonderful job cooking and serving up the hot and delicious meal. I was also impressed with how we all were able to lend a helping hand with the clean-up afterward. It was just a great time of fun, fellowship, and a great cause to raise money for the this important trip to Rock Springs.

Please pray for our youth leaders and kids as they spend this entire week with this project, working for the Lord. I have a feeling lives will be changes on this mission trip. Give all of the glory to the Lord Jesus Christ!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Gotta Get Rid of the Clutter!

Have you ever looked in the storage areas in your home and realize, "You just don't need all of this junk!" Sandra and I are trying to get ready for a big yard sale. We have so much stuff that we need to get rid of: toys, tools, clothes, odds-and-ins, etc. I am amazed at all the accumulation over the years.

After thinking about the clutter in our storage spaces, I thought to myself, "Is there any clutter in my life that doesn't allow even more time to spend in reading God's word?" I am really praying that I can MAKE more time to spend in God's word. Oh...I'm reading it....but I just need to "feast" on it some more!

Christians....let's challenge one another to get rid of the clutter...push it away...and make more time for diving into God's word. Let's read His word and worship!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Great start!

Lamentations 3:22-23

"Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness."

I thank God for these words that I found on the Daily Bible Verse today. The last couple of days, Sandra and I have been struggling with sickness, lack of sleep because of it, and just wanting to feel better! Poor Sandra is having a horrible time getting rid of her cough, and I am now getting my strength back after a bout with heat stroke. With these struggles I was really concerned about being in front of my class at school and being able to handle the day to day stresses this week, but great is God's faithfulness!

My students that I am working with right now are really clicking into gear and doing well with their studies. I just thank God that they really have started off their week very well. I give God all of the glory. I really needed it. Sometimes we all fail and think that WE are not going to make it. We cannot be consumed. Why? Because God is in charge! I thank the Lord for his compassions and his faithfulness. I just know that when I am weak...He is STRONG! Be encouraged. The Lord is our strength!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Our Freedom!

Dear Lord,

I thank you for the freedoms that you have given us in this country, the United States of America. I pray for your guidance and direction for us as Americans. Use us as Christians, oh Lord, to be witnesses of your TRUTH to those around us. We all need you Lord. For true freedom is found in your TRUTH. It sets us free!

Jesus said in John 8:31 and 32, "If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."

Freedom if truly found in Christ Jesus. He is eternal life.

Redemption is a free gift that he gives to those who believe!

Everyone can be saved through faith and belief in Him.

Every knee shall bow, every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord!

Deliver us from evil.

Oh Lord Our Lord how majestic is your name in all the Earth.

My Savior and My God...Jesus Christ!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Baseball Season!

Wow! It's hard to believe that the Worland baseball season is starting to wind down. Jacob is playing a few more Babe Ruth games, but Joshua's little minor league team plays their last game tonight. It was a tough season for their team, but I hope that he wants to continue playing next year. We really enjoyed watching the kids play! The league is a lot different being pitched to by another kid instead of by the coach or by using a tee. If these kids really enjoy the sport, they have to get the experience. So, Sandra and I will go out tonight and cheer on our youngest boy.

Once thing is for certain....we really want baseball to stay alive in Worland, Wyoming. Unfortunately, we are seeing the trend that baseball is not drawing the youth like it once did. It broke my heart to see that Worland didn't have a Legion team for my oldest son Caleb to play on this year, and Worland has had a Legion team in this town for almost a hundred years!

I pray that baseball will continue in this town and that there would not be a loss of interest.......I just can't spit sunflower seeds at any other event!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Thanks for your prayers!

I just wanted to tell everyone, thank you very much for all of your prayers for the Wyoming Boys' School ministry. The ministry has been very fruitful for the Lord. God has blessed this ministry very very much. In the last months, with changes in policies that came from Cheyenne, we were having some difficulty with our clearance paperwork to even get in to present the gospel message.

We praise God that He was faithful, and our paperwork has finally been processed and cleared. Yesterday we had no concerns about going in to minister! The Holy Spirit was moving, the boys really were a part of the worship, and Ben McMillan preached a great sermon on creation and the presence of God. A invitation was given by Ben to accept Jesus. We were thrilled to see about 10 of the boys raising their hands to accept Him as their personal Savior!

Again, thank you for all of your support, encouragement, and of course prayers. God is moving at the boys' school. Remember, when ever good things are happening for the Lord, the devil is on the prowl. Pray for the protection of this ministry. I pray that the door will continue to be kicked wide open!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Pray for these boys....please.

As I sit here writing while my students at the boys' school are reading....the thought came to mind that I need to continually pray for these young men. They come from all over the state with all kinds of backgrounds and "baggage". I am thankful that they are allowed to read their Bibles in their rooms at night, but I often wonder if they are actually understanding the Word of God.

We have the opportunity to present the Gospel to these boys again this Sunday with our team from First Baptist. Please pray that the worship would go unhindered, that the message would be clear, and that the boys would be receptive to the Gospel truth. Pray that the Holy Spirit would really work on the hearts of these young men. I pray that they would accept Jesus as their Savior and that their lives would be changed.

Pray that we will be good witnesses as we enter into the Wyoming Boys' School this next Sunday. Acts 5:32 "And we are His witnesses to these things, and [so] also [is] the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him."

Monday, June 22, 2009

I Love Fishing!

One of the best creatures that God created was the trout! I love fishing for them, and they taste good too! I had a great time with my family up a Meadowlark Lake in the Big Horn Mountains this last Saturday. I just can't wait to go fishing again! Thank you Lord for the quiet relaxing time. I sure needed it!

Fishing is the greatest relaxing outdoor sport.

Into the water sails my hook with bait, ready to grab some trout attention!

Shimmering water hides the fish as I wait to feel a bite! going to be better than this? Wow! I can't wait!

In God's creation is where I love to be... under the blue!

No other feeling like catching that trout on the hook and reeling it in!

God knows I'm hooked on fishing.....better yet...I'm hooked on Jesus!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Weekend Reflection Again!

Hello everyone. I hope all had a great weekend. Here we go for another round. Can you believe that we are halfway done with June? I can't believe that time is passing by so quickly. Well, here is what the Garza family did over the weekend.....

1) Friday...yard work after work....still dodging rain drops.

2) The boys, Sandra, and I took the puppies for walks a few times over the weekend. The Corgi puppies and 2 year old Hank-n-stein did great on our 2 mile course.

3) We enjoyed talking with people as we visited a few local yard sales in Worland. We enjoy, not only the deals, but getting out and seeing bunches of people that we know doing the same thing.

4) We drove to the "big" town of Otto, Wyoming to watch our son Jacob play baseball. The weather cooperated with us...Thank you Lord.

5) When we got home from the baseball game...I thought..."Hmmm. Weather looks nice...guess I'll finish mowing our yard." While I was finishing up, the wind picked clouds were next...and the downpour came. I was completely drenched finishing up our yard!

6) We wrapped up Saturday relaxing and watching movies together. I like that on a rainy day. Wow what a light show God put on! The lightning storm was incredible!

7) Sunday was great worshiping our Lord. Down at the church at 7:30 a.m...I was excited to worship. The 8:30 service went very well. Shaun's message was fantastic as usual, speaking on how we are to lift the Lord's name in prayer! Great teaching time! The 9:30 Sunday School time was great. Dan Hart is teaching from the book of 1st John. He taught on the assurance of salvation. At the 11:00 service...worship really broke loose! I pray that the Lord was pleased with our worship because we really enjoyed singing and praising! Days of Elijah! Pass Me Not! Shout to the Lord! Open the Eyes of My Heart! Of course we got a great second dose of Shaun's message. Praise the Lord! We serve a risen Savior!

8) The rest of the day.......I just got some needed rest.....enjoyed it too. It's great to get some ZZZZZs on a nice cool Sunday afternoon.

Have a great week! I hope that the Lord blesses you!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

God's Winning Team!

I love everything there is about the game of baseball. I love the strategy to force a runner from first to second. It's not about hitting the home run every single time. I love watching the runner ready to steal a base while the pitcher tries to hold him on the base, and at the same time, the pitcher's trying to let his pitches do their work against the batter up at the plate. Of're always looking for the double play! Oh yes...don't get me's always good to see someone hit the "long" ball. And of course...there's always the foul balls one after the other and the "three strikes" you're out!

Watching the game with my sons playing is great. It brings back memories of the days when I played as a kid....the dirty floored dugouts....spitting sunflower seeds and eating rope licorice in anticipation for it to be your "ups".... the disappointment that 3 outs happened right before your turn up at bat, and that you want your team to make quick work of playing defense out on the field. I can remember the tie games in a late inning knowing that anything could happen, and you could either be the winning team or the losing team.

One thing is for certain, when you are on God's team and you have made a commitment to are always on the winning team. Oh, being a Christian is not always perfect. Life in this world isn't always a matter of fact, it can get down right tough and even painful at times. But...we as Christians have a hope and truth that has set us free from the pains of this world. Ultimately in the end, when Christ returns, our Champion of Champions will prevail over Satan and his demons. He has already paid the penalty on the cross for our sins.....but at the end of our Holy Bible...we are told..He wins and we win with HIM!
Revelation 22: 3-5 "And there shall be no more curse, but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it, and His servants shall serve Him. They shall see His face, and His name shall be on their foreheads. There shall be no night there: They need no lamp nor light of the sun, for the Lord God gives them light. And they shall reign forever and ever."
Accept Jesus Christ as your personal Savior. Believe that He is God's only Son. Believe that he died on the cross and was raised from the dead on the third day after being crucified for our sins. Believe in Jesus....I believe, and I am on God's winning team.....please be on this winning team too. Accept Him today...right now. He's our only hope. We will reign with Him forever and ever in His light for eternity. In heaven there is not pain, suffering, death, or destruction.

John 3:16-17 says, "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved."

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The Lord is everything!

Psalm 34:10
"The lions may grow weak and hungry, but those who seek the LORD lack no good thing."

I am blessed by today's verse that came up automatically on my blog. There is nothing that the Lord lacks. He is strength. He is power. He is comfort. He is healing. He is truth. If we seek the Lord...He lacks nothing!!!!

Lead me to the cross, Lord. Lead me to my knees. You are always faithful. Help us not to forget that. I am so thankful that we can call you Father. In our weakness you are strong. We worship You! Strengthen our hearts of worship.... Amen.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

God is Good!

Psalm 147:1
"Praise the Lord. How good it is to sing praises to our God, how pleasant and fitting to praise him!"

Wow! God is good. We have been blessed with many things over the course of the last four days.

1) The Lord allowed our family to have some overdue and much needed time together away from home. We were able to get away and visit Yellowstone. It was a beautiful time to be in God's creation, the lake...the trees...the mountains. I was amazed with how He created geysers, wildlife, and the amazing scenery full of rich color. We enjoyed hiking around and taking in everything. We camped near Cody, Wyoming Friday evening, and then enjoyed each others company all day in Cody. We were refreshed and ready for worship Sunday morning.

2) Worship was great Sunday morning the Student Ministries worship team did a fantastic job leading the congregation once again on a "5th" Sunday. Then Pastor Jess taught from the Word about being content in the Lord...and being happy with what the Lord has given us.

3) Baptism happened. More people joined our church. We are so thankful at First "B"! "To God be the glory...great things He hath done!"

4) Sandra, the boys, and I were able to get our house cleaned up and ready for some friends that we haven't seen in about 15 years. Steve Spalding, friend, old college roommate, and my best man, and his family came to visit and stay at or place yesterday and evening. We had a wonderful time of fellowship, a barbeque, and a time of worship together. Steve, his boys, my boys, and I set up the music room for a great evening of praise and worship. It was great singing new and old songs to the Lord together....just like old times. The last time that we worshipped together was at a youth camp years ago. I am happy to announce that he is now an associate pastor to the seniors at Calvary Chapel, Fresno, in California. He is a good teacher! Pray for him and his family as they make their way back to California by way of Yellowstone National Park.

5) It was back to work at the Wyoming Boys' School early this morning starting the summer session with the students. They were ready for school. Keep praying for these boys and their salvation.

6) Thank you Lord for the many blessings! Please use us according to your plans and will. In all things, help us to continue to sing praises to you, for it is pleasant and fitting to you. Amen.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Another Great Weekend!

What another great weekend this has been! Here's a rundown.

1) Friday...did some yard work and watched a movie with my wonderful wife, Sandra.

2) Got up early and drove to my father-in-law's ranch to get with the family and brand all of the calves. FUN in the sun! "Get along little doggies"...

3) Recuperated for the evening after branding Saturday night. Oh my aching everything!

4) Had a wonderful time worshiping the Lord at church Sunday morning. The Memorial Day service went very well. Thank you to Mat Grenier for playing "Taps" on the his trumpet for the service. Those of you that were at the service, I am so glad that you were in town and a part of it.

5) Thanks for your prayers for the Wyoming Boys' School service. We were able to get a small team into the chapel and minister to the boys. We lifted the Name of Jesus in worship. Shaun did a game with the kids and then presented the Gospel message tying it all together. About a dozen boys accepted Christ as their Savior yesterday! Woo Hoo!

6) Sandra and I spent a quiet evening together relaxing while the boys were a friends' houses. It sure is great to have chances to talk to one another.

7) Had fun adding "branding" pictures and video to Facebook.

8) We had two late baby Nubian goats born last night....always a miracle to see!

9) Got up early this morning to do chores. Baby goats are doing great and being bottle fed.

10) Looking forward to having a barbecue at Pastor Shaun's house today to celebrate Memorial Day.

11) Got a haircut today. Wish I could grow more of it back.

12) Have a great week everybody.....looking forward to what God has in store next.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Youth at the Park!

It's here. It is so hard to believe that the Student Ministries Team and the youth are meeting at the park tonight for our final Wednesday night worship of the 2008-2009 school year. It is amazing how fast the time flies by!

I am so glad that Jess Rollema and his wife have summer plans for our kids this summer. In the past we have had "Sports League" set up for the youth to have summer fellowship and fun. I am anxious to see what is "up Jess' sleeve" for this summer. I am sure that everything that the kids do will be fun and bring honor to Christ!

Yes, the time is flying by, and our kids are growing up. I am just so thankful for our youth ministries to assist us as parents in raising our children to follow Jesus Christ. Before you know it.. the 2009-2010 year will be here. Keep this ministry in prayer! God is doing great things!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Protection From Attack!

2Timothy 4:18
"The Lord will rescue me from every evil attack and will bring me safely to his heavenly kingdom. To him be glory for ever and ever. Amen."

Whenever good things are happening for the Lord's sake, be on the watch. The devil is on the prowl. We need to constantly be in prayer for God's will sake.

Please pray that the ministry will continue strong in the Name of the Lord. We should not be ashamed of the Gospel. It is TRUTH! For example, lately we have had to jump through some paperwork hoops to be able to continue the ministry at the Wyoming Boys' School. Please keep this in your prayers. Pray that the door to deliver the gospel message to those young boys will continue to be kicked open in the Name of Christ!

Please pray for our leadership at First "B". Pray that our church will continue to grow and thrive in our community so that Christ will be honored and glorified. Lord, rescue us from any attack we may receive. We want to give you glory forever and ever!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Student Ministries!

What a successful year for Student Ministries at First "B". My hat's off to Jess Rollema for his leadership for our kids, not only at our church, but in our schools and community. I had the privilege to work with Jess and the SM staff another year, leading worship with our kids. We finished up our last "on-campus" session together this week. Next week we are heading to the park for worship and fun together before the summer break begins. Wow! The 2008-2009 school year is about over!

Keep praying for Jess and the leadership of our youth. Our youth program is really growing and shaping into a vital ministry in our town. Our youth need the Lord. The great thing that I'm seeing is that our kids are starting to reach out more to their peers and getting more involved with missions projects to show the love of Christ. I'm praying that more lives will be changed to follow Jesus.

If you are searching for a place to be used by God, and you feel that God is calling you to witness to our youth, contact our Pastor of Youth Ministries, Jess Rollema. Remember...we can't just say that the youth is the church of the future.....they are the church TODAY!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Weekend Relection!

What a busy weekend....sometimes it seems that going to work on Monday...I get more rest then what I got on the weekend. home and started mowing the yard. With the lawn tractor's taking a bit longer with the push mower. Oh well, I've got to get exercise!!

Saturday was nice for Sandra and I to get away a little. We got to go up to Billings, Montana to spend some time together shopping for needed goods. I tell ya...with all of the traffic and people at stores, you would never know that the economy is bad in America. Sandra and I finally were able to pick up our stove/oven that had been stuck in Cheyenne for a week, late in delivery. Our old one had seen it's better days...we've replaced burners, heating elements, was just time to get a new one, especially after it was going out again.. I was happy just to be able to get my guitar from the repair shop. By the way....Hanson's Music treated me very well with the repair..They definitely have my business! Overall the "best" was just being able to spend time with my wife.....we even had a nice lunch together at Applebee's. Thank you Lord for my wonderful wife. I always cherish my time with her.

Sunday was a wonderful day of worship with 1st "B". We always look forward to Sundays with our church family, but like many others, I had to make sure that I called my mother in Idaho to see how she's doing and wish her a Happy Mother's Day. Praise the Lord she's doing well with her husband, Larry. I pray that all the MOMS had a wonderful Mother's Day. We don't just appreciate you on the holiday. We thank God for all that you do.

God bless you. I hope that your week goes well.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Weekend Reflection!

Hello everyone. I hope all is well. The Lord provided such beautiful weather over the weekend. Even the early Sunday morning rain wasn't bad, especially when it cleared up to sunshine.
I am in awe of the Lords creation. It was nice to get out in the sun on Saturday and doing some yard work. With the snow gone and the warmer days here, it is good to get out even if it was to battle the dandelions that are multiplying by the thousands in my yard!!!!

After Saturday's youngest son Josh and I went and took the Baja Bug out to the badlands on Saturday while Sandra went shopping, Caleb was working, and Jacob was at a track meet. Josh and I had some great father-son bonding time. We took Rusty the Bug on all kinds of dirt roads and hills. We also got out and hiked around chasing rabbits through the sage and rocks. We want to go again!!

Sunday we were blessed by Sunday services and being a part of the worship. For the afternoon, local teens, including my son Caleb Garza, and I met to lead worship for the graduating senior's baccalaureate service at Worland Middle School. The teens were led were Kelci Schaal, Rachel LeBoeuf, Samatha Compton, Nic Craft, and of course Caleb. They did a wonderful job leading the worship for the service. The worship was well received and I believe the Lord's Name was lifted up!

Jess Rollema also did a wonderful job speaking at the event, and Pastor Shaun Matako introduced and concluded the service under the ministerial association. It was great to see 1st "B" so well represented at the event.

Have a great week. God bless you!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Hear My Worship!

Jeremiah 7:2 "Stand at the gate of the Lord's house and there proclaim this message: " 'Hear the word of the Lord, all you people of Judah who come through these gates to worship the Lord.

When I read these words that were to the people of Judah... to hear the word of the Lord and to go through the gates to worship the Lord, I think of how our people come into our church sanctuary to hear the word of the Lord and worship each Sunday morning. We have been so blessed from the Lord to be able to have the freedom to do this. I pray that we as Christians would not just limit our worship to Sunday mornings. We ought to worship our Lord each and everyday. We cannot lose sight of our Lord Jesus Christ.

On the same hand, when we gather together in worship and fellowship as 1st "B", let's give up our best worship that we possibly can. As we sing a new song this Sunday called "Hear My Worship", and as we sing some of the other songs, let's truly ask the Lord that He may really hear our worship! As we worship God, we can call out to Him, we can cry out to Him, we can lift up our hands....LORD HEAR OUR WORSHIP! We worship the Rock of our salvation.

Monday, April 27, 2009

WOW! Busy Weekend!

This was a good weekend, but a busy one! It started out by having our boys having friends over and being at friends' houses...making sure they got where they needed to be and back on Friday night. Saturday morning was an early start making sure that Caleb and Jacob got on their way to Riverton and Thermopolis for their "away" track meets. Of course Sandra and I took care of yard work for most of the day.

The highlight of Sunday was being part of a huge ministry day! The Lord is so good. Of course we were blessed to be a part of the early service and the second service. Pastor Shaun did an excellent job of teaching from Romans 9 in the early service and about Rejection in the second service for his "Survivor" series. The church was packed, and it was wonderful hearing so many people lifting up the Name of the Lord in worship and song. The worship team introduced a new song that we are looking forward to singing again next Sunday. It's called..."Hear My Worship". You can listen to a version of the song on my playlist below on this page.

After a quick lunch downstairs at church, Pastor Shaun, Ben McMillan, Kaleb Craft, my son Caleb Garza, and I loaded up and headed out to the Wyoming Boys' School to present the Gospel message and worship the Lord with the kids out there. Everything was well received. The Lord did some mighty work out there. Please pray that this door of opportunity stays open for our team.

When we were done at the boys' school, we then headed back to the church, of course after a quick "pop" break at the local Cenex Station.....Thanks Pastor Shaun! My son and I then got ready and set up equipment to have some local teenagers rehearse for the upcoming Baccalaureate. The kids were a little nervous going over the music, but it's going to work out well for the service.

I wonder what the Lord has in store for us this week? Anyhow....busy but great weekend! God bless all of you! Have a great week!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Is this the year for the Cubbies?

Okay, Chicago Cubs! I have been waiting for a long time! Is this the year that you go all the way to the World Series and win it? Baseball 2009 is just a young season, but the Chicago Cubs are showing some promise to have a great season. Will I be able to wear my Cubs hat without hanging my head this year? Well....I guess I'm just glad that it's baseball season!

Also....I'm praying that Worland will have a legion team this year! Go Worland Indians! IT'S BASEBALL SEASON!!!

Monday, April 20, 2009

What a Weekend!

Hey Everyone....What a fun weekend we had with several church members. Friday night was the greatest. Jess and Heather had Sandra and me help with the youth "Bunko" Night. What a fun rotating dice game to play with the group. I wasn't too sure about playing it at first, but once we got was a blast! We were laughing so much along with the kids as we played....we almost forgot that we were the adults. Those that were winning rolls of the dice were being wrapped with toilet paper. We had all kinds of snacks....and the winners and "not so winners" received prizes. I can't wait to play again.

Saturday evening was great too. If you are not a part of our church's 4X4 fellowship, you need to get connected. We had some folks from our church and their children over for a Bar-B-Q. You should have seen Ben McMillan sporting his basketball skills with the kids! It was a riot! The kids were climbing all over the playset. We adults enjoyed each other's company while the kids ate their dinners outside at the picnic table. We can't wait to get together again soon!

Sunday, after a wonderful worship service at First "B", Sandra and I finally got to rest at home while the boys went and spent time with their friends. It wasn't long, though, because it was off to Jess and Heather's house for a Student Ministries meeting and fellowship with the team, The Rollemas, Andersons, and the Garzas. Great barbequed bacon burgers Jess! Food, fellowship with friends, a meeting in there for a little bit, and playing a word game, it was a great Sunday evening to wrap up the weekend. Thanks Jess, Heather, and Kyston for having all of us over for a great time.
If you are looking for great fellowship with fellow Christians, First Baptist is a wonderful church family.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

We All Need Prayer!

What a Blessed Easter!

What a wonderful Easter we had last Sunday! I am so happy about how many people were in church and a part of our worship service, especially the 3rd service! I truly believe that the Lord was pleased with our worship to Him, celebrating the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ! It was great to hear all of the voices as we lifted them up in song.

I want to thank our 1st Praise Worship Team. They did an incredible job covering both services. I was so proud of Kaleb Craft and my son Caleb Garza for stepping up and adding an extra special touch to the worship by being able and willing to play guitar and harmonica solos. I was truly blessed and so were many others.

Pastor Shaun had an incredible message with the Gospel clearly taught! Thank you Pastor for all of your hard work and also encouragement. My wife Sandra and Shaun's wife Jodie worked hard in preparation for our kids at church...I'm proud of them too! Also...thank you Pastor Jess for all your hard work, backing up the praise team, getting prepared for it all.

After the Sunday services we raced home had a scavenger hunt for the Easter baskets and had a quick lunch. Then my job for the State of Wyoming sent me to Casper for a conference. I just got back last night, Tuesday. I am just so glad that I could celebrate Easter with Sandra and the kids and with my church family!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Sharing With a Worland Kindergarten!

Getting out in the community was fun for my son Jacob and me yesterday. My boss, Steve Wake, wanted to know if we could take some of our dairy goats over to South Side Elementary to show to his daughter's kindergarten class (Mrs. Tidemann). It all worked out that I could leave the boys school, pick up Jacob from school, and load up the animals.
Right before we started to load the animals I noticed that we had a flat tire on our horse trailer, so we really had to scramble for time! We finally got the tire fixed up, and we were on our way.

After we got to South Side, we unloaded the animals, took them out to the playground and waited for the little kindergartners to join us. The children were so cute petting the animals and asking all of their questions. They asked everything from, "What are their names?" to "How much milk do you get every day?".

We had a great time. Thank you God that we were able to share with those little ones. Thanks for the great weather that we had for it too.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Last Sunday's Worship!

I personally want to thank Rod and Cassie Woodbury for being the guest worship team leaders for last Sunday morning. I heard that they did a terrific job! Of course...I can't wait to lead again with the rest of the worship team this Easter Sunday, but it is just so nice to know that the Lord is bringing in new talented people that are humble and willing to serve in the areas of need. It was nice to receive a break.

If you are wondering where I was....I was downstairs helping my wife in the nursery. The little ones were so cute singing hosanna with palm branches and making cross magnets with the leaders. I have not helped in the nursery with my wife in years! We had a good time. I have to say...I am proud of my wife, Sandra, for all of the hard work that she does for our kids. She is making sure that even the wee little ones hear about Jesus and the teachings of the Bible. I actually got to lead worship singing "The B-I-B-L-E", "Ho. Ho. Ho. Hosanna", "Jesus Loves the Little Children", "Jesus Loves Me", and others. Thanks Anita Carver for helping with the singing of some of the songs I hadn't heard since I was a kid.

Speaking of the Carvers....Dale and Anita Carver are great with the kids! You should have seen them working and playing with the kids! Dale is also great with the puppets!

Anyway....God bless you, and I will see you in worship this Easter Sunday. We will have three services as followed: Traditional, Blended, and Contemporary....all in the Name of the Lord!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Wonderful Sunday Morning!

Hello everyone. I just have to comment about how proud I am of our kids to take a stand and give their commitment to purity. It was wonderful to see both middle schoolers and high schoolers taking a stand in what they believe the Lord would have for them to do....and that is to stay pure and save themselves for their future spouses. I am really proud of Jess and the Student Ministries team! The Lord is truly blessing our children, church, and youth in our community. Way to go Jess!

I also have to say that I am very proud of our kids on the youth worship team. They are committed to worshiping our Lord each and every week. They did so well leading worship yesterday morning. I believe the whole church was blessed. Most of all, I believe the Lord was blessed!

I am looking forward to going to the Southern Baptist Conference in Casper with Pastor Shaun and Pastor Jess this Thursday and Friday. While I am gone, Pastor Shaun has asked Woodburys to lead worship for Palm Sunday. Thanks Woodburys for giving myself and the worship team a break while the conference is going on. This really relieves me from worrying about the practice time. I also get to work with my wife in the nursery this Sunday morning. I haven't gotten to do that for a long time!

I'm am so pleased with the direction that our church is heading. The Lord is really blessing us! We want First B to be a place that we can gather to give God all our worship and glory. We want to continually bow before our King!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Sunday Worship Celebration!

I want to again invite you to come to our 5th Sunday worship celebration this Sunday, March 29, 2009. Of course we will have our 8:30 a.m. Early Celebration, and please come to our baptism/ dedication service at 9:45 a.m. At 11:00 a.m. the Student Ministries Worship Team and I are excited to lead the congregation in worshiping our Lord Jesus Christ! These kids have been so dedicated and committed to singing and playing their instruments for the Lord. They get better and better at worship every time I hear them. Remember....they are not the future church...they are the church NOW! Please join us as we lift up and glorify our God!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Thoughts for today!

What a busy week...and it's only Tuesday! Just have a few thoughts on my mind...just gotta put them down.

* What a mighty God we serve! I am so thankful for His strength from day to day!

* I thank God that I am finally pulling out of the stomach flu and getting my strength back.

* I can't believe how weak I felt Sunday morning being propped up with the stool.

* Thank you for all of your prayers. I have felt them as I am recovering!

* It's so good to be back to work, working with the boys at the Wyoming Boys' School.

* I've gotta get ready for the youth worship for Wednesday and this Sunday morning. Looking forward to working with our young people. We really want to celebrate our Lord with you!

* My wife, Sandra, bless her heart, is such a hard worker. I am so proud of what she is doing in our church nursery, working with Worland's youth swimming program at school, leading middle school girls youth, keeping up with our little farm chores, raising kids,......and the toughest thing of all...putting up with me!

* I'm looking forward to following my boys' running, hurtling, and throwing in this year's track season! Go Warriors! Go Braves!

* Baseball season is just around the corner! Little League.....Babe Ruth.....and Lord, please! Please let there be enough kids to play Legion Baseball this year. Lord...please don't let Legion Baseball die in Worland. Is this okay to add to my prayers?

* Lord...will this be the year for the Chicago Cubs???????

* Our puppy, Jella "Bella" Bean, is so much fun! What a character running all over the place with those short little Corgi legs and no tail!

* I've got to say.....thanks again to the folks who are a part of our Worship Team at First Baptist! You guys are awesome! Thanks for all of your help and understanding with me being sick and all last week. You pulled through greatly for last Sunday worship and worship at the boys' school. God bless you guys!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Loss of a dear pet....

Even at my age, I never would have thought that a little tiny puppy would be something that my family and I could get attached to in such a short time (4 months). This was a tough couple of weeks because the little Welsh Corgi pup that we had... was put to sleep. We found out that she had a genetic kidney disorder. Her name was Hanna Bun-anna Bean. Yes, we are sad that she's gone, but my family and I were talking about the laughter, fun, and playing that we all had with her in the midst of a stressful past few months. We thank God that we had little Hanna even for a short time. God really put her into our family at the right moment. I wish you could have seen the youth group kids playing with her! we have Jella "Bella" Bean...another little Corgi. She's healthy and doing great. She's even more playful than Hanna was.....well.....we guess you just need to come over and see for yourselves!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Be Acceptable in The Lord's Sight!

Psalms 19:14
"Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart Be acceptable in Your sight, O LORD, my strength and my Redeemer."

Let's all be encouraged by this verse. Remember, the Lord is our strong tower, our fortress when we're weak.
It is my prayer today, Oh Lord, that what I say to others out of my mouth and the thoughts that I have, will be pleasing to You. I want to please you in every way, Lord. Help us all to meditate on you in our hearts. Often times we get going in our busy lives and forget to meditate on You throughout the day. Lord, you reign forever and ever! You are our strength and our Redeemer!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

The Lord is Salvation, Strength, and Song!

What a tough week this has been for a lot of people, including myself. Thankfully we have scripture to encourage us! Psalms 118:14 says, "The LORD [is] my strength and song, And He has become my salvation." Praise the Lord! It is amazing how in times of trial, God is faithful. He is our strength. Sometimes we don't understand why we go through trials, but we can grow from these trials as we are continuing to be molded in the vessels that God wants us to be. We are not immuned to trials, but we are reminded by one of my favorite sections of a verse from Joshua 1:5.....God promises.."I will not leave you nor forsake you."
No matter what...I want to encourage you in good times and in the bad that we all need to look at the bigger picture. Christ is our salvation and He gives us a hope that a lot of non-Christians just don't understand. We have joy knowing that in this world we are just passing through to be with our Lord. But....Non-Christians need this joy too! Let's pray for one another that the Holy Spirit gives us opportunities to reach the non-Christians.....that way they can get rid of the "non-" and be a part of His Kingdom too. Let us have a song in our hearts and worship HIM!!!