April 17, 2014

ID93 – Wedding Reception – Part 6

Following are the blessings that my dad read at the reception:
From Bill & Diana Waring of Lake Stevens, WA, near Seattle (author of Beyond Survival and Reaping the Harvest plus other historical/musical resources for home educators)

Our Father God, Though we as Your children are separated by a vast ocean, yet we can join together in this moment to ask Your blessings on this marriage. We ask that by Your Spirit, You would increasingly root Pete and Genevieve in Your love, that they would be equipped by You to see with spiritual eyes-and increasingly comprehend with their hearts and minds-the width and length and depth and height of Your love which passes human understanding. We pray for them that their love for one another would be rooted and grounded and utterly entwined in You, so that as they grow in their love for You, their human love for each other would grow ever deeper, ever stronger, ever more encompassing. We ask that You would fill them to overflowing with the fullness of God, that they may experience the riches of knowing the day-to-day reality and presence of our Savior, Immanuel, God With Us. And, that in Your presence, as Your Word declares, there would be fullness of joy. We commit this marriage and these two precious people to You. We ask this in the name of Jesus and by the power of the Holy Spirit, Amen.

Love you guys,
Bill & Diana

Wedding Photo

From Alfredo and Carmen Torres of San Antonio, Texas (parents of my close friend,
Lourdes, one of the daughters in The Return of the Daughters, and a young woman who
has been a real example to me of servanthood and femininity)

Dear Pete and Genevieve,
Here is the blessing Alfredo and I have for your wedding day. Thank you for giving us this special privilege. Blessed be the Lord, God Almighty, who before the foundations of the earth knew that you were for each other. On this day He is uniting your souls until death. Together may you serve the Lord, Christ Jesus, with all your heart, mind and soul. May the love for the vision God has given you grow each passing day. May you both glorify Him in the works He has prepared for you to walk in. May you take every God-given opportunity to give the gospel to a soul in want or to serve a saint in need. May the God of life bless you with many, many children; that together they may co-labor with you to further the Kingdom of Christ on earth. May your love for Jesus Christ grow deeper each day. May He continue to knit your hearts together and grow your love for one another stronger year after year. God bless and Keep your marriage always. To God be the glory!

“Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter; Fear God and keep His commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.” Ecclesiastes 12:13

Wedding Photo

From Geoffrey Botkin of San Antonio, Texas (father of Anna Sofia and Elizabeth Botkin,
authors of So Much More, directors of The Return of the Daughters and close friends of
mine):

Dear Craig and Barbara,

Allow me to begin with this prayerful blessing: Pete and Genevieve, for the Glory of Christ alone, may you be the deliberate and conscientious parents of thousands of ten thousands, and may your descendants possess the gates of those who are determined to destroy Christendom from the face of the earth. May your children be as honorable with the Fifth Commandment as you have been, and may they all disciple millions of lesser-advantaged peoples in the Southern Hemisphere. May your family unity and example show many cultures the blessings of dominion as you extend the Crown Rights of Christ Jesus far outside the borders of Australia. May your blissful marriage recover and model the picture of the Christian home, and may your estate be a great incubator of economic success, civil society, righteousness and applied theology as you work together to build a multigenerational dynasty. And may the Lord your God sustain you both with ever-increasing happiness. So be it. Amen.

Since I have known Genevieve, I have regarded her as the kind of historical heroine about whom such a prayer and blessing would be fitting. This is one reason I have prayed so desperately to God to find her the right husband. Craig, the daughter you give away today has been very precious to our family for many reasons. In past years, I have prayed with great urgency for a good husband for Genevieve because she is such a special and important asset to the Kingdom of God.

It was with special urgency I was praying for her on her last visit to the US. I confess there were times I despaired of her finding a worthy mate in New Zealand and cried out with a mixture of emotions as Genevieve bravely and confidently returned to serve her earthly father, trusting her heavenly father for her future. She was magnificent in faith and her radiant love for her father was noticed and remembered by many in the US.

I want to tell you how sorry we all are we cannot be with you to see that victorious moment which represents God’s great sovereignty in joining Genevieve and Pete in covenantal marriage. Her marriage is especially glorious to me because it so vividly represents God’s goodness, his faithfulness, his majesty, his love and his providential plan for history in leading Genevieve to Pete at exactly the right moment in history.

Genevieve is one of the greatest heroines I know. Her testimony in standing with her father is now a popular story in the US which has become legendary for the right reasons. I believe this marriage will become legendary for the right reasons. With the greatest of affection and overflowing joy, I remain your faithful and loving friend,

Geoffrey Botkin

For the Greater Glory of God through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ,

Genevieve de Deugd

Issacharian Wife

ID092 – Wedding Reception – Part 5

Dear Girls,

The next newsletter is below. 
Warm regards,
Genevieve
 
Introduction
Name: Judith
Introduction: Dear Genevieve,
Greetings from England!
My name is Judith. I'm 24 years old. I live in England with
my parents and younger sisters. I found Issacharian
Daughters through Anne Sofia and Elizabeth Botkin's
website, Visionary Daughters. I've been SO blessed by
reading through the archives and I've enjoyed (and been
encouraged by) each of the more recent newsletters as
you've published them on your website. I live at home and
embrace my parents' guidance and protection in a culture
that mocks young ladies who seek to be godly and virtuous
and attacks their desires to live at home and prepare to be
wives and mothers. It's SO refreshing to read your words
and to know that I'm not alone in this battle! There ARE
other young ladies with similar convictions and ideals.
Thank God for the fellowship He provides! 

May you and your husband and your little one be
blessed richly beyond all measure!

In Messiah,
Judith

ID092 – Wedding Reception – Part 5

Following is the speech that Pete de Deugd, my new husband, gave at the reception:

About 18 months ago, I was in town waiting for some machinery parts to be made at a local engineering firm, when on a whim I thought I’d pop in on an old work colleague.

During our conversation, the inevitable question came up, “Have you met anyone yet?” The conversation concluded with my friend saying, “So let me get this straight…you are writing to a man you have never met, about a lady you have never met, in a country you have never been to????????!!”

Well. “Yes!” And the next chapter in the tale is even better.

On a Sunday evening in June last year, I was on an Auckland/Palmy flight, and the air hostess announced that we would be making the decent to Palmerston North. I knew that Mr Smith would only have invited me over to New Zealand if he believed it was worthwhile.

So there I was.just 15 minutes away, after having written to Mr Smith for almost a year, potentially about to meet my future wife at the airport! I did meet the family, but no Genevieve!! She had to collect young Gracie who had caught a ride up the nearby escalator.

Then I saw her! And in her wonderful face I saw gentleness, confidence and sincerity. Over the past months I have seen that these traits characterize Genevieve. It doesn’t end there either.

It’s been inspiring to witness her faith, her loyalty, insightfulness, diligence, self-control,charity and the fastest touch-typing I have ever seen!

I have been calling Genevieve a little pet name. But before I tell you what it is let me mention something about my own hometown. Ballarat was one of the first and I think the largest gold rush town in Victoria.

Funnily enough, many of the miners from the Californian goldrush were amongst those who flooded into Victoria looking for a rich claim in Ballarat.

Ballarat has a historic tourist township, and while I was working there, I learnt that the gold miners would tunnel along the seams of quartz rock, remotely hoping their quartz seam would intersect with an old dry riverbed. The reason being that the quarts seam/river bed intersection would almost certainly contain a rich gold deposit called a mother lode – hence the term.

On occasion I’ve called Genevieve my mother lode, because she is my rich treasure, a lady of rare virtue and beauty.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank her father (a Californian no less!) for granting me the honor and priviledge of caring for and having his daughter’s hand in marriage. I would also like to say a special thank you to Mr & Mrs Smith for fostering a close friendship and camaraderie with Genevieve over the years.

It would seem to me that one of the greatest wedding presents a groom can receive comes from his new parents in-law, particularly the bride’s father.

It is the special gift of knowing that one’s bride is acquainted with strong feelings of friendship, trust and respect for the man who first held her in his arms, then carried her on his shoulders and finally lead her down the aisle. It is a gift to know too that she has heard firm words such as, “No, child,” as well the tender words of, “Yes, Princess?” So Mr Smith, I would just like to say thank you for being both my wife’s father and friend over the years.

As for things at my end, my parents have also been my closest friends. Through thick and thin (he he. a lot of thin), Mum and Dad have rallied around. Few friends (if any) would stick by, encourage and support in the way that my parents have. I will always remember the 2am morning teas with my mum, as we took shifts operating machines to fill army contracts.

So thank you, Mum and Dad for your care, direction and support all these years. And Andrew, although we have been geographically apart much of our adult lives, we have shared very similar roads. Sometimes there has been an ocean between us, a long drive, or just a silo wall. We have always bridged these things for each other in a flash as needed, and I’m sure we always will.

Actually, Andrew has a new understanding of engagement too. He hasn’t been able to get Mum or Dad on the phone for months!!!

Genevieve

Pete went on to give a number of thank yous to folks who had helped with the wedding and finished by thanking me for marrying him. Something he still does to this day. And I’m always thanking him for asking me!

For the Greater Glory of God through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ,

Genevieve de Deugd

Issacharian daughter

ID091 – Wedding Reception – Part 4

Following is the speech that Pete’s best man, Jonathan Field, gave at the reception. Jonathan is also the man who recommended me to Pete. He tells the story of his involvement in our courtship in his speech.

G’day all,
My name is Jonathan Field and in case the accent hasn’t already betrayed it, I come from the West Island of New Zealand-also known as Australia. Today is a special day for all of us-most especially for Pete & Genevieve, but also for us their myriad family and friends as we rejoice in God’s goodness and anticipate God’s rich blessing both on and through this marriage.

I’m thrilled to be celebrating with you all, and thrilled to see so many in attendance. Today is a day to rejoice, and I thank you for joining the celebrations.

There are many people and unusual circumstances through which the Lord brought Pete & Genevieve together. I was one of the cogs in the Lord’s wheel, if I may so say it, and in fact have the unique privilege of being one of only three people in the entire universe who knew both Pete and Genevieve long before they finally met. This is their story, and I’d like to share it with you. But even moreso, this is God’s story, and we have all been thoroughly delighted to see His hand at work.

Pete

I first saw Pete in about July 2003 at a friend’s 21st birthday party, although I don’t specifically recall him from that event. My first recollection of Pete is roughly a year or two later (in March 2005) at a bonfire held on his parents’ farm in country Victoria, just north of Ballarat. Ballarat is roughly two and a half hours west of Melbourne, the capital city of the state of Victoria in Australia where we live, and Pete’s parents own roughly 80 acres of land just north of Ballarat. Technically speaking, they live in Coghills Creek, a place so tiny you’ll hardly find it on the map. And I must confess that a few wrong turns jeopardized my chances of arrival, but in the darkness I finally saw the roaring flames of the bonfire and knew I had arrived. To my surprise and delight, I already knew many of the people there- invariably friends through homeschooling-and so passed a very pleasant evening. I met Henk, Pete’s father, that evening, and remember enjoying a good chat and being impressed with his sincere passion for truth and righteousness.

Many of us slept over that night-myself in an open-air hammock near the dying fire-and then attended church with Pete the next morning, heading home en-masse early or mid afternoon. I got into conversation with Pete, and we discovered much in common, and I ended up staying late into the night that Sunday after all other guests had departed. In the end I caught a few hours kip and left at some unearthly hour on Monday morning! That’s how many hours we spent in conversation!

It was truly delightful to begin to get to know Pete. I don’t think I’d ever even heard of him or his family before, but we quickly discovered much in common. Both home-schooled-and proud of it. Both running a business-him in woodworking, and myself in computer software. Both passionate about seeing Christ and His truth impact every aspect of culture and lifestyle. Both committed to seeing every aspect of life as “sacred”, instead of buying into the false “sacred/secular divide”. And despite some differences in theological background, we discovered that the outworking of our faith was very similar indeed.

Bridal Party

And here I must stress how extremely refreshing it was to meet Pete. Those who have been running a business for any great length of time, know how very different a mindset is required for running a business than for being an employee. Not that one is good and one is bad, but simply that employed friends rarely comprehend the struggles and stresses of business life. In addition, open, honest, trustworthy, passionately committed Christian young men who really think about every aspect of their life and let Scripture shape every aspect of their thinking-such men are rare and delightful treasures indeed-and when I find them, I like to stay in touch!

These are the men with whom I hope to see Christ’s purposes outworked in the decades to come. For those who don’t know Pete, he’s an honest, reliable, hard-working, Truth-loving disciple of Christ. He’s a country fella-or “country bloke” as we say in Australia. He’s very skillful with his hands. He’s a “philosopher” in the original sense of the word-a lover of wisdom. And, taking after his God, he has a strong creative flair too-evidenced in creative innovations in business, as well as decorative woodwork, metalwork, and even the occasional prose. I am proud to call him “friend”.

Now, I should say-and this is very important later in the story-that there is another thing Pete and I had in common. And it came out quickly in conversation. We’re both very, hmmm, particular about what we were looking for in a future wife. We both knew dozens, if not hundreds, of “nice Christian women”, but we both had a very strong sense of marriage as a calling with God-ordained purposes that wouldn’t simply be fulfilled by niceness alone. And as we compared checklists, if I may be so brutally honest, we discovered even a great similarity in the kinds of things we did and did not want in a future wife.

And because it is relevant, let me take a moment to list some of the things that Pete was
looking for :

  • He wanted a wife who recognized that work is not merely something that a man must do in order to survive, but is in fact a noble calling and blessing designed by God Himself.
  • He wanted a wife who recognized, valued, and joyfully embraced her calling as his primary earthly helper.
  • He wanted a wife who was not afraid to undertake the different, the difficult, or the new. Who knows what challenges may come in the years ahead, and a woman who crumbles at the first sign of challenge or change, is not the kind of help we need! And the calling of helper-as Proverbs 31 demonstrates-may engage the woman in ways beyond what Western tradition recognizes.
  • He wanted a wife who was passionately committed to letting Scripture impact and shape every aspect of her life.
  • He wanted a wife who understood and loved theology-not merely able to recite the “what”s, but also with a good grasp of the deeper “why”s.
  • He wanted a wife who loves children, and looks forwards to raising a new generation of culture-shapers.
  • And in case that wasn’t enough, he also wanted his wife to be of compatible sense of humor, easy-going nature (i.e. not a “stress-head”), pretty, and with a creative flair.

Understandably, Pete was having some difficulty finding the girl of his dreams.

Genevieve

I first met the Smith family four years ago in January or February 2004. I had been studying at the Reformed Theological College in Geelong, and made fast friends with a vibrant Christian man there named David Waldron-known to most of you. I love New Zealand, and travel here every few years, and David, knowing my interest in home-schooling, suggested that I meet the Smith family on my next visit to New Zealand-as they run a prominent home schooling organization in New Zealand, and are passionate committed Christians. I travel widely, and I very deliberately network very widely-especially within the body of Christ, and lengthy journeys on far more tenuous connections have been made on many an occasion.

I’d also been interested in taking my only sister with me on my next trip to New Zealand. And so it was finally organized. Sophia (my sister) and I would spend two weeks in New Zealand, on a busy schedule involving visits to Auckland, Christchurch, Palmerston North, Feilding, and Marton, visiting many friends new and old. It was a delightful time. We spent two nights with the Smiths. They were extremely busy at the time, running a conference and hosting other international guests. And so our interaction was very limited. But what interaction we had was very good. I remember cleaning up after dinner one night, I think I was trying to help with the dishes or something. Genevieve was also involved in the cleanup, and we began discussing life, the universe, and everything, as those who know me know I am wont to do. I was quickly impressed with the depth of thought behind her convictions, and with her gentle, personable manner. She was clearly a woman of many virtues.

She was also a prolific reader, having read many good non-fiction books. And she was also home-schooled, and had been exposed to some of the same influences as I. So we found a great deal in common and a great deal to discuss. I was interested in her book-importation ministry-having been interested myself in importing good Christian resources into Australia. And she had access to some excellent Christian messages on audio tape which she had license to distribute freely, and which were well worth disseminating widely. At some point during our short visit, Genevieve gave me a copy of a “wanted” poster she had drawn up-somewhat in jest-advertising for a good Godly husband. Unbeknowst to her, I had reasons for not counting her as a “prospect”, despite her many and evident virtues, and unbeknownst to me, she had her own entirely different reasons for not counting me as a “prospect”. I was trying in my manner of communication to be open and friendly but to not imply non-existent “interest”. Genevieve showed me a copy of the poster, as it was relevant to a discussion we were having, and I asked if I could keep a copy-there were a few fine young Christian men in Melbourne whom I thought at the time might find a woman of her virtues worth pursuing.

And so we parted. For my part, I was greatly encouraged to meet a woman of her passionate commitment to Christ, and her conscious, deliberate application of God’s Word. Whilst she wasn’t the woman I was looking for, it encouraged me in my wait for the one of great virtue who would be my own.

Pete & Genevieve

The art of match-making is not usually practiced by young unmarried men, but why, I ask, should old wrinkled European women get all the fun?

Yes, the allegations are true. I suggested to Pete that he find out more about this Genevieve Smith. The distance seemed insurmountable, and the suggestion went nowhere. Months later, I suggested it again. And I think a third time. But understandably, he was hesitant. His only knowledge of this lass was my report of her virtues, and my assessment of their mutual suitability, and he had no simple way of confirming things for himself. In addition, how could he begin to get to know her without risking his preliminary investigations being interpreted as an irreversible commitment? Real risks, no action taken, and many more months passed.

In the providence of God, I traveled to the USA in July 2006 to participate in some fossil digs in Texas, USA. Whilst in the USA, it worked out very neatly for me to spend a week in Virginia attending a Vision Forum conference. It so happened-we didn’t plan it this way- that Genevieve Smith also attended the same conference. It was our second time meeting and we got on well-the only two representatives from our respective countries and the two furthest from home attending the conference.

I felt strongly that she and Pete would make a great match, but how to encourage things in that direction? Further, how could I be sure Genevieve was still ‘unattached’? I plucked up courage, and at risk of having things horribly misinterpreted, I asked Genevieve why it is that she and some other virtuous Christian women we both knew or knew of, were still single into their mid to late 20s, when they are so passionate about marrying and helping their husband and raising a family? I said “Surely any astute young man would be looking for a woman like this-why haven’t they snapped you up by now?”

It was a serious question on my part. How do so many young women with such evident qualities and ready for and desiring marriage, remain unselected for so long? But in addition, I was trying to find out if she was still “available”. And I confess I felt horribly awkward asking the question, but I knew that my motivation was right and that the reason for my question would soon be revealed.

And things moved fairly quickly from there. After my return to Australia, I emailed Genevieve, and acknowledged that what I was doing was highly unusual, and didn’t fit the standard models found in the typical courtship books, but there was a very worthy young man I had commended her to, and what would be the best way for him to learn more about her without being irrevocably committed to marriage thereby? She suggested getting the young man to email her father.

I spoke with Pete, and he was cautiously interested, and willing to begin walking that road. I had raved on Genevieve’s many qualities to Pete, so he already knew something about her, but the Smiths knew nothing of Pete. So to give them the same advantage, I wrote them an email of introduction, raving on Pete’s many qualities. Both Pete and Genevieve are very rave-worthy.

Introductions made, I stepped out of the way, and the rest was up to them. And the rest, as they say, is history.

Closing Remarks

This story is a remarkable story of God’s trustworthiness. I said that there were only three people who knew both Pete and Genevieve before introductions were made. One was, of course, myself. Another was my sister Sophia who was with me in New Zealand when I met the Smiths. The third, of course-and most importantly-is Jehovah Jireh, God Himself. He knew Pete & Genevieve inside and out. He knew His calling on their lives. He knew their strengths and weaknesses, and how best to bless them and equip them for future fruitfulness. He knew, and He designed for them a “match made in Heaven”. And today we share in their joy and celebrate God’s goodness. In hindsight, it’s interesting to note that I met Pete and Genevieve within about six months of each other. Of course, I had no idea at the time that I would later be introducing one to the other, but in the providence of God, He already had it in mind.

God has done great things, and we are glad because of them. This day was made by the Lord. We will rejoice and be glad in it.

Mt Ruapehu

Finally, I would like to briefly acknowledge the unusual-and oftentimes humorous-ways in which the Lord works. Pete met Genevieve through my introduction. But I met the Smiths- and hence Genevieve-through David Waldron’s introduction. But how did David know the Smiths? Well, he became good friends with them years ago when Mount Ruapehu started rumbling seriously. Houses were being evacuated, and without going into detail, one family offered emergency accommodation to the other, and they became good friends. Without the volcano, there might never have been that strong Smith-Waldron friendship. Without that friendship, there might never have been the Field-Smith connection. And without the Field-Smith connection, there might never have been the joyful event we’re celebrating today. Thus, in God’s good providence, and perhaps showing God’s sense of humour, we can quite literally say that God used a volcano to bring Pete & Genevieve together.

Blessing

Pete & Genevieve, may your marriage be fruitful. May joy, peace, and hospitality mark your home. May your children rise up and call you blessed, and walk in the ways of the Lord. May His favour and grace be on you and with you in all that you do. May His Word in your mouth touch people and nations. We rejoice with you, we thank God for what He’s done, is doing and will do, in, through and for you, and we stand with you, believe with you, and pray with you for God’s good pleasure to be accomplished in your lives and family, from this day forward.

For the Greater Glory of God through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ,

Genevieve de Deugd

Issacharian Wife

ID090 – Wedding Reception – Part 3

24 Nov 2008

Following is the speech that my father, Craig Smith, gave at the reception:
Ladies and Gentlemen, I have witnessed in my own household the most remarkable sequence of events, developments which, on a day to day basis only occasionally attracted notice. But over time they have amounted to a tidal wave of change, a massive paradigm shift.

Genevieve went from being a gung-ho pursuer of academic excellence and qualifications, striving for notoriety and to make earth-shattering changes in both the people and the environments around her; from being a power dresser who acted as a bailiff for a law firm, serving subpoenas and debt collections with harshness, firmness and intimidation. She was good. Then she returned from her two years in the USA, where she had quite an encounter with the Lord, so much so that even Doug Phillips of Vison Forum told me, “I think Genevieve had a sort of epiphany while she was here.” Amen to that.

Upon her return, Genevieve immediately set about lifting jobs from my shoulders. One was debt collecting from the dark days, now happily gone, when we were landlords. “I can do that,” she told me. “I’ve done it heaps.” Before the day was out she was returning the papers to me with the apology that she just couldn’t face doing it anymore. That I could understand.I hated doing it. But the thing that struck me was that Genevieve knew precisely why she couldn’t do it any more: it wasn’t the kind of job the model of a Proverbs 31 Godly woman, toward which she was striving to become, was meant to be doing. Debt collecting was calling upon her to take on masculine, aggressive characteristics that she no longer wanted to have.

Genevieve has always been a good communicator. At her birth, when the weighing and bathing were completed and Barbara was taken away for a shower, Genevieve and I were left alone in the room. I bent over and talked quietly about how the Lord God was going to bless her and our future together. She fixed her eyes on me, folks, and while she didn’t say much, we communicated.

She has worked on communication especially hard in the last few years: to be clear, concise, endeavouring to recruit people to her position by employing the communication principles the Bible commends: graciousness, friendliness, respect, yet not compromising on matters of urgency and moral non-negotiables. When she was nine, she wrote a letter to the New Zealand Minister of Finance, David Caygill, who had introduced a bill to tax children’s bank accounts. I explained this Bill to her and on her own she promptly wrote a scorching letter saying to the Minister,

I think it’s disgraceful that you are taxing our savings, so calm your greedy fingers down a little.

The Opposition spokesman on Finance, Ruth Richardson, was sent a copy of this letter and she immediately invited Genevieve to Parliament for what turned out to be a Press Conference. Genevieve had three points to tell Ms Richardson. She explained the first one and then Ruth launched into some political speech for the benefit of the rolling cameras. Genevieve reached out her hand and laid it on Ruth’s arm, stopping her speech. “Yes, Genevieve?” “I haven’t finished yet. I have two more points.”

So when Genevieve returned from the USA, she then set about changing her personal habits of speech.and controlling the way she responded or reacted to things.and how she dressed.and she re-evaluated her relationship with each other member of the family and strove to improve them in any way that it was possible for her to do. When the rest of us would blurt out criticism of some family member’s actions or words, with a harsh or sarcastic edge in our voices, Genevieve would pause for a moment and consider how better to respond. Then you would see a master at work as she gently and yet authoritatively and yet submissively would sort of suggest yet sort of guide the person to see the situation in a different light. She could do that with her siblings; she could do that with me. It has been remarkable to watch.

And most remarkable of all is that when she received unjust and undeserved criticism and even vitriol from siblings or those outside the family, she would respond with gentle, loving kindness. It was Romans 12:21 in action where it says, “Do not be overcome by evil but overcome evil with good.”

As the years ticked by and all the predictable buzz about her getting older and being left on the shelf floated around- insensitivities endured by plenty of women in this very room-Genevieve determined not to be affected by it. So what should she be focussed on in the meantime? Pursuing academic excellence and practical excellence in the things to which she-like the general calling to all women of God-has been called: to be a helpmeet. And I and her mother have been the prime beneficiaries of this wife and mother and homemaker in training as she took over the shopping, budgeting, tidying up, menu planning, cooking, child rearing and even parts of the home education.not to mention the accounting, correspondence, editing, typesetting, proofreading and so forth for the Home Education Foundation. And she still had time to start up an international weekly newsletter plus bookselling business. And pattern drafting and sewing lessons and bread-making classes and cooking with herbs lessons. The latest was to take massage lessons to ease Pete’s weary shoulders after a hard day’s work.

Back in ’04 when our son Zach set the date for his marriage to his lovely wife Megan in the USA, Genevieve and Charmagne hatched the plot for them to go over a couple months early and work for Megan’s dad in order to earn the cash to help pay for the rest of the family to get over there for the wedding. The name of the game is making personal sacrifices in order to advance the interests of others. And Pete! When I had the privilege of first getting to know Pete, I found a guy so remarkable I couldn’t help but say to everyone I met, “I thought they’d stopped making people like Pete!”

He would routinely undersell himself, but as I scratched his surface, all I ever found was pure gold. I cannot say I’ve ever seen before, embodied in one person, such discipline, talent, creativity, commitment to what is right, and a vision for godly dominion over the earth through unwavering habits of honest, debt-free work to a high standard of excellence. And Pete is a communicator too! When he first came to visit and stayed for 10 days, Pete and I stayed up late nearly every night talking about things.he’d report on his impressions, would ask advice about how he was coming across, wonder if he was too forward or not paying enough attention to others; I’d probe his background; we’d discuss Genevieve’s many attributes. Pete was a thorough gentleman and went out of his way to pay respect to us all and especially to honour Barbara and I as Genevieve’s parents. This was a good move. It set him way out there on his own. It won our hearts.

And very early every next morning, Genevieve and I would take a long walk and discuss the many new and exciting attributes of Pete’s that we had each discovered since our last talk together. Folks, these were exciting times!

There was a landowner on a steep hill early last century who needed to hire a man to drive his family down the switchback trail to town now and again. Three applicants turned up, and he took them to the sharpest curve with the steepest drop. He asked the first applicant how close he reckoned he could drive the coach to the edge of the curve without going over. The young fellow eyed up the curve, kicked at the dirt and announced he could get to within 12 inches.

The landowner posed the same question to the second applicant who made a similar survey and boasted that he could surely get those coach wheels to about six inches from the edge. When the third applicant was asked what he thought he could do, he replied, “Well, sir, I don’t know how close I could get, and I’m not really interested in finding out. If I’m to drive your family down this hill, I’m going to keep the horses and the coach as far to the inside of the curve and to safety as I possibly can.” The landowner’s instantaneous response was, “Son, you’re hired!”

Tying that tale back into my speech, I’ll say this: Pete and Genevieve have taken a similar approach to their physical interaction during this courtship and engagement period-I mean they’ve discussed these kinds of things at length-you know, instead of seeing how close they could get without falling off the cliff, they’d see how far apart. Hey, this engagement period ended today.you’re married now! Man, you’re going to have to come up with a new strategy for physical interaction.

During their courtship, Pete would initiate only such things as they both knew would please God, pass muster with both sets of parents and that would not cause either of them the slightest twinge of conscience now or later. They did not take every opportunity to hive off alone somewhere but stayed close to the family. Genevieve was always dressed so elegantly. Pete was never seen without collar and tie. Pete would ask my permission to take Genevieve out for a walk into town. These actions, in pursuit of holiness, righteousness and purity, have not only secured a greater level of love and trust in one another, greatly enhancing their future married life, it has secured the everlasting thankfulness and blessing of their parents, Henk & Sue, Barbara and myself.

Pete & Genevieve, may the Lord our God richly reward and honour you for doing your utmost to honour Him.

For the Greater Glory of God through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ,

Genevieve de Deugd

Issacharian Wife

ID089 – Wedding Reception – Part 2

17 Nov 2008

Dear Girls,

Following is the speech that my father-in-law, Henk de Deugd, gave at the reception:

Opportunity & Privilege

“I count this opportunity to talk to this fine gathering of family and friends an honor and privilege. Let me commence by saying how proud I am of both of my sons, Andrew and Peter.

Andrew lives in Moree, NSW and grows the famous Australian hard prime wheat and in addition operates an agricultural contracting business. Peter operates a wood milling and wood product manufacturing business in a little place called Coghills Creek north of Ballarat in Victoria. Both Andrew and Pete are entrepreneurs, talented business men, and they both love freedom and private enterprise. They are very committed to their respective callings, they are enthusiastic, and possess thatDutch determination and tenacity.

Furthermore, they understand the importance of obedience to God’s Law-Word, and that blessings flow from that obedience. Today is a real special occasion for the de Deugd and Smith families because today marks the beginning of a whole lot of new relationships, friendships, and the formation of a much larger extended family.

A Little About Sue & I

Many of you know a lot about Pete already. I know that, because of all the emails that have been received in response to the engagement story in Genevieve’s newsletter. Recently, someone asked Sue what her secret was in training boys to grow up to be like Pete and Andrew. I won’t elaborate on what Sue said, but let me tell you a little about us, the people who have shaped the lives of both Andrew and Pete.

First, let me tell you that the shaping process started for me by marrying a Christian girl, one specially chosen and created to be my helper. Sue is Godly, gracious, gentle and loving and unswerving in her support of me as head of the family, and she is everything that I am not! Second, we provided a challenging environment for our boys, one in which their masculinity could develop. This included having old cars, go-carts, welding equipment, a pulling-thingsapart place, water rafts and going camping, hay carting through the night, hunting, and so on.

Third, we have encouraged family business which involves dad, mum and the children. Family business is a real good way to build character, practice innovation and develop entrepreneurship.

And fourth, we have built a home that encourages family worship, and around the meal table debates which tackle the tough, “Why?” questions. This, briefly, is the way we have grown together as a family.

About Pete

Let me now focus on Pete a little more, and tell you some things not commonly know. Everyone thinks Pete is a cabinet maker, a wood worker, a maker of fine furniture. This is true, but not altogether accurate. Pete is an inventor and entrepreneur. He sees opportunities everywhere. He is also a practical scientist and engineer. I think of him as a Manufacturing Process Engineer. Often we would sit at the kitchen table for morning or afternoon tea and out would come the blunt pencil, the old envelope and he would say, “I think I can shave about 30 seconds off the process by …. and this will make the product more competitive in the marketplace.” If after the conversation we agreed, then there would be a flurry of activity, and I would say to Sue late that night, “Where is Pete?” “Oh,” she would say, “He is in the shed making a new machine-you know the one that is going to take another 30 seconds off the process!”

In this context, Pete’s business continues to grow and that mainly by word of mouth. He is building a solid reputation for his manufacturing skill. Furthermore, Pete has clearly established his calling, and it is this calling that Genevieve has identified with, and really appreciates. She has seen the real opportunity in making this a family business. Her dad and others will tell more about Genevieve and how this day has come about.

About Genevieve

Now what do Sue and I think about Genevieve? Well, Genevieve, you are beautiful, attractive, chaste, modest and now married to a very special man. Not only that, you are capable, intelligent, virtuous, and your gifts, abilities, and character superbly compliment Pete’s entrepreneurial and innovative talents. I am excited to know, that you will stand by Pete, and strengthen his calling by ably complementing him in the many areas of life. I am even more excited to know that you appreciate and desire to help Pete build his family business, and be a friend to all his friends and family.

I am also pleased that you and Pete have a multigenerational focus, and want to establish a
sure foundation for your children’s, children.

About the Future

Gift

Over the last six months or so, Pete shared with me some of the conversation he has had with Genevieve about the future. Recently, I asked Pete, “How does Genevieve picture married life to be like?” He replied, somewhat starry-eyed, “She says I am really wonderful, so much so that she looks forward to a whole lot of little Petes running around. And what did you tell her I asked? He immediately replied, “Genevieve is so wonderful that I am looking forward to seeing a lot of little Genevieve running around.” Well, as I see it, both families will need more process engineers, designers, farmers, secretaries, lawyers, environmental engineers, plumbers, etc, so we look to God for His blessing in this regard.

Now, Genevieve I know you are a visionary and multigenerational thinker and this is certainly an advantage because it makes the present hardships easier to manage. In thinking long and hard about this multigenerational perspective, I thought to myself, how can I encourage you both?
Well, I snuck into the innovator’s bedroom looking for a clue for an answer to my question. Surprise, surprise, on the wall that doesn’t have exotic timbers stored against it, I noted a shelf with some interesting things on it that Pete has gathered over the years. These things obviously mean a lot to him. On this shelf is a very old decorative timber trinket box, a special old red wine glass, a ship’s captain’s wheel with a bell mounted in the centre of it, and…

Next to that ship’s wheel was something very special-something very durable. Genevieve, I quietly took this from that top shelf so that I would have the priviledge of giving it to you.

Pete's Gumboots
This, Genevieve, is a multigenerational gift for your little Petes. These are about 30 years old. They would have been secondhand when we got them and have been on some special little feet. This is the end of my speech but today is the beginning of the establishment of a new extended trustee family. Welcome Genevieve. We will love you like our own daughter!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow.”

For the Greater Glory of God through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ,

Genevieve de Deugd

Issacharian Wife