September 19, 2021

Issacharian Daughters – ID067

Issacharian Daughters – ID067 – click on link below for correct layout and photos


Dear Girls,

The next newsletter is attached as a pdf and the text follows

this note for those of you who have difficulty opening the pdfs.

Also attached is an Issacharian Catalogue. This will be of particular

interest to those of you in New Zealand and Australia. In it I have

advertised all the books that I sell?? and they are all on special!

The prices all include shipping (including international shipping).

In response to ID066??

Boutique Narelle
Oh my goodness, Genevieve!

How wonderful…. I feel so much

like laughing and bouncing off

the walls. Just a few days ago I

was contemplating with my

mother about sewing my own

clothes, and maybe one day,

starting my own clothing

businessthat offers girls pretty

clothes.But I was wondering

how to get started! Ha ha ha.

And you sent this newsletter!

My prayer has been answered.

*Shakes head.* God has

answeredme again through

yournewsletters. =) Thanks so

much, and I’m looking forward

to all of Narelle’s projects in the


Lisamarie from the USA

In response to ID058 and ID059??

Beautiful Words?? My Engagement Story

Dear Genevieve, the beautiful bride to be, 
Oh, we are so excited over your engagement with
Mr. Pete de Deugd! I'm typing this in the library
so I can't giggle with joy. This is so glorious!
The Lord has used the both of you to bring honor
to His Holy name. We'll be praying for the Lord
to bless your continued preparation, wedding and
marriage. May you be the mother of tens of
millions, and may your children posses the gates
of your enemies.  
I'm so excited about all that the Lord has done,
and is doing with your courtship. I've been praying,
both for wisdom for you and Pete, and that this
courtship would bring glory  to God and bless the
Church of Jesus Christ. And God has done abundantly
more than anyone could imagine! Sarah, who is 14,
said today,??it's like a storybook. I agree, and
the best thing is, it's all real. Life is so much
more exciting than I could ever dream, once we
yield to God his rightful sovereignty. He is good
and his mercy endureth forever!  
I love that note from Jackie (Sunnyside WA), what
wise words she has written. What a blessing that
these young ladies and young men are learning to
obey God and serve  Him with all their hearts
while they are still children. Oh, I enjoyed
learning how Pete has been building his
multigenerational vision woodworking business
since he was 14. That is so exciting! I kidded
my little brother Matt that he only has 4 years
(he's ten).  
I was thinking about what Dr. Voddie Baucham
spoke about on?? The Centrality of the Home in
the Evangelism and Discipleship of the Next
Generation. He explained how so many young
(and old) men in seminary don't want to get
married, they want to get their "ministry"
together. Well, I realized that Pete has a
most biblical ministry, both to the people
you mentioned (his family, church, neighbors
and customers, etc) but he also has a
thriving ministry to young ladies. A legion
of his little sisters in the Lord are taking
very careful notes about what God's word says
on the characteristics of a godly husband. 
I love to see how the names of people and
their lives fit together. Jonathan was a true
friend to Pete by introducing you (ha ha,
I lovethe wanted poster). It reminded me of
the friendship of David and Jonathan, how
Jonathan was so selfless toward David.  
And just think about it, God was preparing
you to be Pete's helpmeet your whole life:
as your parents invested in your life
through home education, as the Lord turned
your heart to home, as you practiced 
sacrificing your desires and helping your
father. And from the beginning, God was
leading Pete to prepare for you, giving
him mercy, grace, wisdom, strength and
biblical convictions. For I know the plans
I have for you saith the Lord...  
I was so excited about your engagement
and so wanted to give you an engagement gift. 
I considered books, but I didn't know how 
that would work out. As I was mowing the lawn,
I realized that I could pray for your marriage
for one year, starting on your wedding day.
I really like Dr. SM Davis's messages. He
speaks about how Satan tries to undermine
a marriage in the first year, and that the
first year is such an important foundation
for the rest of the marriage. The Old Testament
gives commands about a newly married man being
excluded from the army of Israel so he can cheer
up his wife.  
:) So my prayers will be my present to you! 
The box that Pete made for you is so lovely; 
how exciting it is to think that your children
will be able to enjoy looking at it's beauty,
and remember the beautiful story of God's
providence in your marriage! I love to hear
about when my parents were children and about
their early marriage. My parents were engaged 
by a bridge between Del Rio, Texas, and Mexico.
My father was at Laughlin AFB for pilot training
when he asked Mama to marry him. I once asked if
Daddy knelt down when he proposed, but Mama says
that he was on crutches because he had sprained
his ankle. But that's still very romantic, (to
us, his daughters, Daddy is our prince, and 
nearly anything he does is wonderful).
Daddy is our hero! 
Erin in the USA 


Monday, 3 December 2007

Dear Girls,

Questions for Suitors

Imagine...the day comes when a suitor appears on the scene. Great! What next?

An excellent next step is to determine whether a marriage between you and him would be an equal yoking. That is, if you were to enter into a relationship or courtship, could it culminate in a marriage? Do you believe the same things? Is there anything which would hinder the two of you from marrying? For example, for me, I wouldn't marry a man who didn't want to educate his children at home. So when my suitor came along, that was one of the first questions my dad asked him!

Your suitor might be a complete stranger or at least you may not know him well enough to know whether you'd like to marry him. So, as well as learning about his beliefs and convictions, it may be that you would like to get to know other aspects about him: his interests and preferences, likes and dislikes, views on various things, practices, personal history and family background, etc

This is where the following list of questions for suitors is helpful. They can help you get to know him. And as you ask him these questions, he might use them too to help him get to know you!

As you read through these questions, there may be some that will make you think,??I don't care about that. I don't need to know the answer to that question. ?? That is fine! We all have different things we are looking for and wondering about. Maybe as you read through you'll think,??What about asking him this or that? ?? Excellent!

There are over 70 questions on various subjects on the next three pages. Use them as a launching pad to help you think about other things you'd like to discuss with a suitor. If you do think of any other questions, jot them down and email them to me. The questions following are all ones that different Issacharian Daughters have submitted to me. Many thanks to the girls who contributed the questions! I'd love to email out more in another newsletter if any of you have any more questions you would like to email me.

A way that myself and other girls have used questions that we have compiled is to go through the questions with our parents/family. This can be a wonderful exercise. It can iron out what is really important to your family and can help you and your father communicate accurately about what he is looking for in a husband for you and what you are hoping for in a husband for yourself. If you do that with these questions, you might come up with others you'd like to ask in addition to or instead of some of these questions. Feel free to email those questions to me too and, Lord willing, perhaps I can email those out in a future newsletter.


Are sports just something fun to do, or are they a big part of your life?

What music do you listen to? (some examples) Does your family like/enjoy it too?

What is your standard for Godly music?

? What are your views on television in the home, and what is your family's history with television?

? What are your thoughts on computer/video gaming?

? What's your favourite sport?

What kind of music do you like?


What family traditions, holiday or otherwise, would you like to incorporate into your family?

Do you want your children homeschooled? What role would you play in that? Would a 'hodge-podge' of curriculum be a part of the schooling plan?

What are your views on circumcision? Would our sons (Lord willing) be circumcised?

How would you go about testing suitors for your daughters? Or mates for your sons?

What are your ideas when it comes to medical vs. natural/herbal remedies, or emergencies?

? Is homeschooling a preference or a conviction and why? What does your family think about it?

? What methods of discipline did your parents and grandparents use, and what is your opinion about this?

? If a visiting child misbehaves in your home, how do or would you handle it?

? What are your family's holiday and anniversary traditions and how do you feel about them?

? As an adult living with or away from your family, what parts do your mother, father and grandparents play in your life?

? In your family, whose responsibility is it to mow the lawn and take care of other yard work?

Is that the way you think it should be? How do or would you establish division of labour indoors and out?

? Does your family have an history of health challenges, and what is their and your view on this?

? How would you discipline a child if the child needed it?

Would you want your children home educated or sent to a school?


Do you only buy/wear name brand clothing/shoes, or are finds at thrift stores just fine?

Would you be the only money-maker, or could (I) continue one or more cottage industries (which were begun before marriage), either throughout the marriage or as needed?

Do you have a student loan or credit card debt? If so what are your plans for paying it off?


Do you like 'leftover' meals or something fresh for each meal?

What food(s) will you absolutely not eat? 🙂

? When your family visits friends for a shared meal, what do you like to do after you've eaten?

? Do you ever do the dishes? When?

? What are your views on nutrition and supplementation?

Personal Habits/Skills/Hobbies/Direction

? Is there anything about your current lifestyle or habits that you would change if there were children being raised in your presence?

? What are your views and practices regarding male dress/appearance?

? Are you a home handyman, do you hire a professional, do you expect your mother/sister/wife to fix it, or do you just ignore it?

? Do you enjoy and initiate intellectual stimulation?

? What is your view on speech standards, in regards to education as well as uprightness?

Do you alter your speech style when evangelizing or amongst differing levels of society and for what reason?

Why have you chosen courtship over dating? Was it your parents' view to start with, or have you dug deeper yourself, and as you have, has God spoken to you about it?

Would you rather make a large difference in one person's life or a small difference in the entire world?

What God-given gifts and talents do you have, and how do you use or plan to use them for God's service?

What weaknesses do you have that I can pray about for you? How are you trying to overcome them, and is there any way I can help?

What ministry(s) do you have?

Is there any way I would be able to help you in this ministry(s)?

Have you travelled much?

Do you have a vision for your future family? What is it?

Do you play any musical instruments?

? What do you like doing in your spare time?


What's your view on our present government? Do you think people should protest against some of the laws that have been passed or may be passed soon? Or would you rather only pray about it instead of moving in action?

Do you ever criticize the leaders of our country?

What do you think of society's total exception and toleration of homosexuals?

Would you smack your children even though it is illegal to do so? Is it right/wrong to obey this law?


Do you like the town or the country better?

What's your favourite animal?

What kind of books do enjoy reading most?

What's your favourite kind of take-aways?


? What part does the Bible play in your life, and what is your view on modern translations?

? What do you consider appropriate music in the church and in the home and why?

? How do you spend your Sabbath and why?

? If your church leadership taught or promoted something you considered errant, how would you respond?

? What is your view on mid-week or evening church meetings that require the presence of husband and/or wife?

? What is your opinion of youth groups and children's Sunday school?

? What is your attitude and activity regarding missions and evangelism?

Do you believe in pre-destination?

Do you believe in??once saved always saved ???

How much time do you spend talking to God? Is He always the main factor in all of your decisions? How has He impacted your life? When/how did you become a Christian? Are all the members in your family Christians or not?

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

Genevieve SmithIssacharian Daughter

Notes: I have sent this email to girls who have embraced a vision of victorious daughterhood as well as those who may be thinking about doing so (and even to some girls who may just like some encouragement regarding different areas of home life). Some of the girls are in the USA, UK, Australia and other parts of the world. Most are in New Zealand. You are welcome to forward this email on to others so long as you do so in its entirety. If you do not want to receive these emails please just send a return email to me stating that fact. If you know of other girls who would be encouraged by receiving these emails, feel free to forward the email to them or send me their email address. Locations of visitors to this page

Issacharian Daughters – ID066

pdf of Issacharian Daughters – ID066 – click on link below for correct layout and photos


Monday, 26 November 2007

Dear Girls,

Boutique Narelle

Guest newsletter by Narelle Worboys.

Are you frustrated with current fashions?

Is it hard to find appropriate clothes to wear?

Do modern trends defy your efforts to appear modest and feminine yet stylish?

In this publication we introduce the concept of an internet helpline to answer your questions, give you ideas, and provide solutions to the important question of what to wear!


An Internet Helpline and Resource for Modelling Modesty

Modest femininity doesn’t mean you have to dress like a frump, hiding all your curves. The curves are part of your femininity. Our Creator doesn’t require a burqa mentality in order to glorify Him with your body.

Recognizing this, Narelle Worboys set out to construct a wardrobe for herself that was elegant and simple, with flowing lines and pleasing form that wouldn’t date. In her journey toward modest elegance, she learned secrets that have made her clothes more attractive whilst retaining the comfort factor. Realizing that she could shorten this journey for others, the concept of Boutique Narelle was born. The online beginnings can be seen at

Discovering Boutique Narelle to be a vision with wonderful scope, Genevieve Smith and B’Ethel Williams formed a founding committee with Narelle. We hope you will be as excited as we are at the possibilities. These include:

* A reference resource of web links, books, and articles on topics such as modesty, sewing, and fashion.

* NewCreations: a regionally indexed list of seamstresses and others with fashion skills whose services are available for hire. Advertising through Boutique Narelle will draw a 5% commission from your sales which will go toward funding the website. If you have fashion skills and would like to operate a business from home but maybe don’t have the technical expertise or finances to create your own website, here’s your chance to get started. Boutique Narelle aims to encourage entrepreneurs with a desire to clothe women appropriate to their faith and figure.

* Sewing Tips: illustrated articles on garment construction and reconstruction.

* Closet Tips: articles and photographs providing ideas for your wardrobe appropriate to your figure.

* Shopping Tips: seasonal fashion review and store assessment.

* Social Tips: articles exploring what it means to be modest and feminine, dressing to blend in whilst glorifying God, being stylish rather than trendy or modish.

* Mirror Stop: a personal elegance checklist.

* Seasonal Secrets: summer or winter, drip or dry, there are ways to improve the comfort, practicality, and elegance of your clothing.

* Encouraging production of modest swimwear and bridal and maternity clothing.

* Art of Appearance: networking people who can help; girls with skills in clothing and other aspects of a girl’s appearance (i.e. figure, hairstyles, makeup) who are willing to share their knowledge on a one-to-one basis or in a group situation.

* Catalyst for group activities such as mall or Save Mart shopping ventures, fashion-to-figure wardrobe planning parties, design competitions and model makeover shoots (with rewards donated by stores who support our project), workshops in pattern drafting, sewing, and hair and makeup, seminars on modesty and deportment ??

There are a number of excellent American websites that cater for parts of this vision, but we believe a centralized bureau with a focus on making these services accessible to Australians and New Zealanders will be of particular benefit.

We will not endeavour on this website to set out rules of must-do’s and shalt-not’s, but rather to stimulate your awareness of how your appearance gives either a negative or positive testimony to the Lord Jesus Christ and to assist you in modelling modesty in every situation of your daily life, allowing you, no matter what religious slant you hold, to find something at Boutique Narelle which you can use to enhance your dressing experience.

Boutique Narelle offers an opportunity for Christian young ladies who desire involvement in a ministry. Here is a list of current service vacancies.

Miss Photographer

Narelle requires a photographer to record the illustrative portion of her articles.This will include live models and still photography of dressmaker mannequins.She wants someone who is passionate about photographing modesty and elegance in fashion. Creative instinct and an ability to work in with the director is a must.Digital camera and tripod can be provided.You must be able to work in Dannevirke, New Zealand on the days agreed upon.

Miss Stage Technician

The above photographer will need an assistant who can set up and monitor backdrops, lighting, and props.Some knowledge of photography and lighting would be helpful.An eye for detail and an ability to work in with the director is a must.You must be able to work in Dannevirke, New Zealand on the days agreed upon.

Miss Graphic Designer

Boutique Narelle requires an artist to design a stylized label, logo, and colour palette for Boutique Narelle. A portfolio of ideas can be provided.

Miss Web Designer

Boutique Narelle requires a web designer to set up a website which will have:

* a simple, uncluttered style

* an easy-to-navigate format

* a site map

* a search feature

* a large number of quality photographs

* facility for technically-unskilled staff to upload updates and new material

* possibly a forum or blog open to public comment

Miss Encyclopedia of Web Links

Follow web links specific to BN-related topics such as modesty and sewing.Create a reference resource of these links providing a brief review of pros/cons and significant content.

Miss Encyclopedia of Written Resources

Compile a reference resource of books and articles on BN-related topics. Write a brief review of pros/cons and significant content, and give details on where to access the material.

Miss Network

Compile an index of contacts/people involved in the Boutique Narelle project and keep it up-to-date.This person may possibly become the point of first contact for people visiting the website and asking for information.

Misses Fashion Vista

Boutique Narelle requires ladies with knowledge of current fashions who will enjoy browsing well-known clothing stores and writing up the availability and use of garments for modest ladies.There will be room for these individuals to negotiate with stores regarding photographic illustrations and advertising.

Mrs Business Advisor

Boutique Narelle requires an older woman with business experience who can advise on personnel management, product development, financial hazards (this item particularly), and general administration.

If you are interested in any of these positions, send your résumé to telling us what you have to offer and why you want to be involved. Please include at least two character references, one of which should be from someone who is not a relative. Make sure you pray about it first!

If you would like to be part of the NewCreations index or Art of Appearance network, send your details to

We believe a foundation of prayer will be advantageous as we embark on this innovative project. If you’re excited about the Boutique Narelle concept and want to see it succeed, why don’t you place it on your prayer list?

If you have any comments or suggestions, please do email us at


Pardon this dropping

Of awail of despair,

For I did go shopping


But there was nothing there

That covered and enhanced me.

Hitched to here and plunged to there,

Stretching tight most everywhere.

I like to think it’s not just pink

That flatters curves and straights of mine

And provesin truth I’mfeminine.

I can be pretty, I can be smart,

When I learn the ancient,gentle art

Of beauty, elegance, and charm,

A woman’s strength, a woman’sbalm,

The Gilead river that flows supine

From the modest lassy’sChrist-owned heart.

So I’ll start on a separate, sweeterline,

A clothing quest for a modesty nest

To inspire, equip, and beautify.

Let’s make a start to mine the Art??

Boutique Narelle has much to impart!

WHO IS NARELLE?Narelle (pronounced nah-REL) was born to David and Isabel Worboys in 1976 and lives with them in Dannevirke, New Zealand. The only child remaining at home, Narelle is the second of six who were all educated using the Accelerated Christian Education program. The family began homeschooling when Narelle was eight. Her father David founded and directed New Zealand Christian Academy, a homeschooling branch of A.C.E., for twenty years, recently retiring from education and devoting his time to multiple community service endeavours.

Narelle has had a chronic illness since she was nineteen, a condition which severely limits her physical activity and social life. Despite this, Narelle is amazed at what the Lord has done in and through her. She has continued to educate herself in a variety of subjects, including music, creative writing, film media, and how a needle, thread, scissors, two hands, and an active mind can work together productively. Fascinated by fashion and design, she loves playing with colour, shape, and texture, often worked out in little things like drawing detailed floral vignettes with coloured pencils and creating beautiful greeting cards from paper and ribbon.

She is a published novelist, playwright, poet, and photographer. In 2006 she founded Script Haven, a library of scripts and tips for students and parents/teachers preparing for A.C.E. Student Conventions. Also in 2006, she participated in??The Way of the Master ?? eight-week training course and discovered the ease and excitement of witnessing to non-believers the way Jesus did.

In 2007 she achieved her dream to sing again (after not doing so for many years), making her public debut as a soloist at the Dannevirke Town Hall. She’s eager for opportunities to minister with her music. Between July and October 07 she accompanied her father to local churches and clubs giving presentations about Operation Christmas Child, a mission she has embraced with a passion.

Her Mum is the woman she most admires in the world, her sisters are her best friends, she likes to sing very loud when there’s nobody to be disturbed, and chocolate éclairs (with real chocolate) are her favourite celebration food. She loves telling stories, she recently discovered she can cook, and she gets a big kick out of making people laugh. She knows a lot about waiting, having a heart full of big dreams accompanied by the knowledge that if these are entrusted to the Creator’s hands, they will come to pass in a way more beautiful than she could ever engineer.

Her prayer since the age of eighteen has been that the Lord will use her to transform young lives, that He would make her humble that she might communicate the quality of life that is consistent with the work of the Holy Spirit.

For more details about Narelle’s projects visit And to see the beginnings of Boutique Narelle visit

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

Genevieve SmithIssacharian Daughter

Notes:I have sent this email to girls who have embraced a vision of victorious daughterhood as well as those who may be thinking about doing so (and even to some girls who may just like some encouragement regarding different areas of home life). Some of the girls are in the USA, UK, Australia and other parts of the world. Most are in New Zealand. You are welcome to forward this email on to others so long as you do so in its entirety. If you do not want to receive these emails please just send a return email to me stating that fact. If you know of other girls who would be encouraged by receiving these emails, feel free to forward the email to them or send me their email address. Locations of visitors to this page

Issacharian Daughters – ID065

pdf of Issacharian Daughters – ID065 – click on link below for correct layout and photos


Monday, 19 November 2007Dear Girls,

The Courting Chair?? Bonus

In the previous four newsletters Zach and Amy Lautenschlager told us the story of their courtship which they entitled,??The Courting Chair. ?? Many of you were very curious about what the courting chair looked like. I found a couple of examples of courting chairs online. Here they are:

This one on the right is described as,??made in the late 1800’s ?? and as being a good chair for conversation.

Historians commenting on the courting chair tend to make a comment along these lines,??The makers of early examples, in the late 17th and the 18th centuries, were motivated in their chair designs by a concern for allowing enough space for the ample dresses of the period. ?? So a courting chair allowed a man and woman to sit close together and talk while still giving enough room for the woman’s billowy, wide dress!

Others have commented that the Victorian courting chair allows two people to sit face-to-face comfortably which promotes conversation.

These two pictures above, while rather interesting and lovely leave much to be desired once you have seen the courting chair which was part of Amy’s story. Pictures of it are below! For the Greater Glory of God through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ,

Genevieve SmithIssacharian Daughter

Notes: I have sent this email to girls who have embraced a vision of victorious daughterhood as well as those who may be thinking about doing so (and even to some girls who may just like some encouragement regarding different areas of home life). Some of the girls are in the USA, UK, Australia and other parts of the world. Most are in New Zealand. You are welcome to forward this email on to others so long as you do so in its entirety. If you do not want to receive these emails please just send a return email to me stating that fact. If you know of other girls who would be encouraged by receiving these emails, feel free to forward the email to them or send me their email address. Locations of visitors to this page

Issacharian Daughters – ID064

pdf of Issacharian Daughters – ID064 – click on link below for correct layout and photos


Dear Girls,

The next newsletter is attached and the text from the newsletter (though not the photos) follows this note.

The Questions

Many of you have asked me to share the “40 pages of questions” with you that Pete and I went through as we determined whether to enter into a courtship (refer to Issacharian Daughters newsletters #058 and #059 “Beautiful Words – My Engagement Story”). The questionsI referred to were notones I had written up (though I had written down plenty of my own questions to ask afuture suitor one day!) so I cannot share them with you. I’m encouraging the compiler of thequestions toput them into a booklet and sell it – though you never know, I might be able to share them with you in the future! They are simply fabulous questions and were very helpful to Pete and I.

In the meantime, I thought it would be a marvellous thing if we compiled our own list of questions! Sit down and think to yourself, “If a man was interested in marrying me, what would I want to know about him before I could consider marrying him?” Or, “What would I want a suitor to know about me?” The questions can be just as much used by him to get to know you as by you to get to know him! Or, “What convictions do I have and what could I ask a man to determine if he shared the same convictions?” Or, “What experiences has he had? What is his vision for the future? What likes and dislikes? What are his passions and interests? What direction is he going? What messages are on his heart?” And then compose questions to probe and find the answers to these sorts of questions and musings! These might be questions that you would want to ask or your father would want to ask. We can include them all in our Questions! They might be questions to simply get to know someone who is a stranger or questions to get to know someone at a deeper level or questions to discover areas of unity or disunity.

When Pete and I went through the questions we learned all sorts of wonderful and important things about one another such as our beliefs on various points of doctrine. This was great. After we started courting I realised that there where some really basic things I’d never learned about him, such as his middle name – which is Alexander – and how to pronouce his last name!

Naturally those points were quickly addressed! So our Questions can ask for information about simple and normal things such as his favouriteicecream flavour as much as heavier things such as how he has prepared to lead a family.

Sit down then and think about what questions you would want to ask a future suitor. Write them down and email them to me. You could discuss this with your father, mother, siblings or friends. Talk with them about what questions they think you might want to or may need to ask. They might have their own questions that they would want to ask someone themselves who was interested in pursuing you! Email all of the questions you come up with to me. Lord willing, I will be able to compile them all and send them out in a future newsletter.

Have a great week,Genevieve Smith

PS. Hasn’t this”Courting Chair” series been great? Many of you have asked to see a photo of the courting chair. I don’t have one in this final part, but there is a possiblity that I might be able to share one with you in the future – so stay tuned!

Monday, 12 November 2007

Dear Girls,

The Courting Chair?? Part 4?? Final

AmyAll summer long Dad had been talking about a trip to South Dakota to see the L’s. Finally a date was set for the middle of November. I left home in October, ahead of my family, to take part in a friend’s wedding. I visited a few other friends along the way before meeting my family in Iowa, where my grandparents live.

Before I left, Zach asked if he could call me on my cell phone to make sure I arrived safely at each of my stops. I was delighted that he asked. It would be nearly three weeks before we’d get to South Dakota, and I wouldn’t have an opportunity to keep up our usual e-correspondence. Fun as the trip promised to be in other respects, I was not happy about being??away ?? from Zach for so long.

True to his word, Zach called at every step along my journey. When I arrived at my grandparents’ house at the end of it, he called for one reason or other every day. Once it was to let me know how the South Dakota elections came out, another time to tell me it was snowing. I noticed that any reason sufficed, and I didn’t mind a bit. I knew Daddy didn’t mind if he called me. What I didn’t know was that he had my dad’s permission to court me.

My family joined me in Iowa, and we spent a few days together there before traveling to South Dakota. We arrived at the L’s mid afternoon on Saturday, November 11th. There was much excitement among the Bentley and Lautenschlager clans as we greeted each other and unloaded the van. After dinner we gave Zach a couple of late birthday presents. One of these, of course, was the flag I had made. This got rave reviews from all, though Zach himself said little?? just that he couldn’t tell me how much he liked it.The next day after church a winter picnic had been planned. We drove up into the Black Hills to beautiful Lake Sheridan, bringing hot dogs, bratwurst, baked beans and mocha to warm us up. Our immediate families were joined by a few extras?? Donna L’s folks, and her sister who was visiting with her daughters. We grilled our brats and dogs over a wood fire, and Zach found a tarp for some of us girls to sit on?? looking out over the lake. He joined us, but soon he and I found ourselves alone, as our siblings wandered off for one reason or another. He commented on the lovely view of the lake, and we chatted about this and that. Then the tone of the conversation changed. He began telling me how important my friendship was to him. He told me that he had my daddy’s permission to court me, and now he wanted to ask for mine. I told him that he had it.

We sat there awhile and talked about just what we meant by that word??courtship. ?? We both agreed that it was a relationship specifically looking towards marriage. We both saw things that made us believe God was leading us to marriage. This was the time when we would be looking for God’s continued confirmation, or for Him to clearly show us that this was not His will. We both agreed that our families, especially our parents were an important part of this process. We wanted their help. So, we got up and went over to our families to make the official announcement that we were??courting. ??

Before he asked to court me, Zach had written out his thoughts on the purpose, themes, and direction for our courtship. He chose Psalm 127 for our theme scripture, the Psalm which begins??Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. ?? As we sought marriage with all its blessings and fruit, it must always be in submission to Him. Zach set purity, honor, humility, and honesty as the theme for our courtship, and promised these things to me. And he began to pull together issues that we needed to address and discuss. These issues included things as diverse as diet, church authority, state authority, modesty, birth control, and on and on. If we were to be married, we needed to be in significant agreement on significant subjects.

Over the week of our visit Zach and I hardly stopped talking. It was so nice to be able to give him my time and attention, and to have it be right and appropriate to do so. We talked about the roles God designed us for?? he was the leader, I was to follow and help him. We talked about the blessings God had given us through faithful parents and grandparents?? of truths they strove to learn and live, and had taught to us. This treasure God had given to us, and we must protect it and pass it on to our children. We turned over every stone we could think of to find any possible show-stoppers. Neither of us wanted to find a reason we should not be married, but we both agreed it would be easier now than to discover something further down the road when our hearts were more involved.

During this week we also had more time to work together. What an important confirmation that was! One of the things I knew I needed to be to my husband was a helper, suited to his needs. We found as we worked together we made each other better. We also found the work more fun. We had both prayed for spouses with whom we could work. It was exciting to see potential even greater than what we had imagined. God was answering our prayers.

We both loved the official title of being a courting couple. There was so much more we could now say?? like Zach telling me in more detail how much he loved and appreciated the flag. (He took to showing it to everybody who walked into the house.) And our dear families were understanding, and encouraged us doing things together. When he sat down, I was guaranteed a seat beside him. Whichever vehicle he was riding in was the one I rode in too. When he worked in his office, I was his assistant by default. We were usually the first ones up in the mornings, and Zach would build a fire in the woodburning stove. Then we would sit in its warmth and read our Bibles, pray and talk together.

All summer long I’d heard from Zach about the Great American Adventure show for which I had designed the costumes. Before we left, he arranged one final performance for the season. He had invited friends and family to join the crowd. It was wonderful to hear the music in person?? very much like the music I’d loved the first time Zach and I met. And it was neat to meet more of the people who were special to my man.

We said our good-byes early in the morning of November 19?? just a week into this thing called courtship. There were no good-bye kisses, or??I love you’s. ?? We both wanted to save those things up for later. He did hug me, though, and tell me he would be working hard?? preparing a place for me.

˜ ??After that visit, phone calls were at least daily occurrences. We could talk for hours, and Zach’s papa teased that once we were married we would have nothing left to talk about. We talked about housing possibilities, big families, theology, politics?? you name it. We worked together on a newsletter for his gun rights organization and he made me his research director.

A courtship, as we see it, is not the same thing as an engagement. We were not promised to marry each other at this point. But because Zach had waited until he was pretty sure I was the one for him, and because I was also pretty sure, it was hard not to assume that marriage would be the outcome. Both of us agreed courtship was something we really wanted to do just once. Every day made us more sure this was indeed the way God was leading. Our parents and family continued to support us every step of the way.

Zach Amy played her part so very well. I was simply amazed at her brilliant ability to actively help and support me. After just a few weeks of official courtship, I knew beyond doubt I wanted to marry her. Now I needed to be sure it was what God wanted.

Throughout our courtship period, we had been actively looking for things to indicate that marriage was not His will, some fundamental thing that we couldn’t agree on, some incompatibility, or anything else to indicate God had not created us for each other. My father and grandfather were also seeking God in prayer, asking Him to show us if marriage was not His will. But rather than finding problems, all any of us could identify were deeper and deeper areas of agreement and compatibility.

I spent several days in fasting and prayer. Amy and her dad joined me on the last day. We wanted to be married more than just about anything else in the world, but by God’s grace we laid that desire at His feet. As I wrestled with the decision in prayer throughout the day, I only became more sure, more and more peaceful. When I got up the next morning, I was positive it was God’s will for us to be married. He had created us for each other.Not too long after that, I called Jack and officially asked him for his daughter’s hand in marriage. He graciously consented, and we began looking for ideas on how I would??pop the question. ?? Over the next several weeks I prepared to visit Mobile over Christmas, and a plan started to develop.˜ ??

Amy A month after I left South Dakota, Zach flew to Mobile. It was so good to see each other again. I’m amazed how much you can miss someone in a month! I didn’t know what to anticipate from this visit. I knew absolutely by this time that I wanted to marry Zach. I knew he was my perfect man?? not perfect in the moral sense, he was a sinner, but he was perfect for me. I knew God had formed us for each other. I could not but wonder about a Christmas engagement, but I wasn’t sure. The time period of three months had been batted around for our courtship. Three months wouldn’t be up until February 12th. I was praying I would not have to wait so long, but also praying for patience if I should have to. I knew I had the potential ability to sway Zach in his decision?? to press him to do what I wanted, but I did not want to be that kind of woman. God created men to lead, and so I asked grace to follow.Two days after Zach’s arrival, on Dec. 21st, we met with my pastor for pre-engagement counseling. That was really rather fun. It was great to sit and listen to my man talk with my pastor about his vision and prayer for his family. His wisdom and humility do not cease to amaze me. That evening our family was invited to dinner with the Fell family?? old, dear friends who simply had to meet Zach before they left town for Christmas. I was looking forward to introducing them, and also to showing Zach a fun old piece of furniture they had just finished restoring after Hurricane Katrina smashed it to pieces?? my old friend, the courting chair.Dinner with the Fells is usually casual?? plastic plates and order-out pizza, as often as not. Tonight it was grilled pork loin served on fine china?? an early Christmas celebration, I supposed. Mrs. Fell’s mother had picked the loveliest Camellia flowers to decorate the table. She pointed out two perfect, snowy blooms:??For the bride and groom. ?? I blushed and squirmed inwardly for what Zach must be thinking. No, I was not going around telling people we were as good as engaged! After dinner was cleared away, and everybody was busy talking here and there, Zach asked me if I’d like to go sit in the courting chair. We went into the quiet front room and sat down within the embrace of the old, polished wood. I so appreciated his making this chair special to him because he knew it was important to me. I looked into his eyes, and he began to tell me that I was precious to him, and then he was standing up and drawing something from his pocket?? and down on one knee in front of me asking me to be his wife. I paused, to savor the awe and beauty of a moment I had dreamed about for years. Then I gave the only answer I could imagine:??Yes. ??Now after finding so many ways to show me over the last months, Zach told me for the first time that he loved me. A waltz began to play in the background, and he asked me to dance. The old courting chair looked on in approval?? it had done its job once more.˜ ??

Our courtship was officially rather short?? five weeks, four days, three hours, fifteen minutes, seven seconds (approximately). But, we have found, the form isn’t really that important. What matters, and what makes courtship different from dating, has to do ultimately with the heart. Purity. Honor. Honesty. Humility. These themes that Zach chose for our courtship say it very well. Even before our courtship began, he was living these things towards me. From the beginning we sought to have a pure and wholesome friendship, and engage our minds before our hearts. Being in love is simply delightful, but we knew we had to think first. Because we did, we have a sweetness and security in our love. We don’t just feel that we will have a wonderful marriage; we have every reason to believe so because of the work God prompted us to do ahead of time. We worked to truly get to know each other?? not just to find out how the other person made us feel. We looked to see if God had suited us for each other, and when we began to see He had, we pursued marriage, not just a good time with no strings attached. We aren’t stoics. We have feelings, emotions, passions. But by God’s grace we tried to keep these in check until we knew that moving forward was not only fun, but wise.The path we walked is kind of an odd one. It wasn’t what I had expected my path would be. It isn’t like any other courtship story I’ve heard. But it is such a delight to look back and see God’s wise and faithful leading. It is such a blessing to be able to stand here and say??I have no doubts. I know I was created for Zach, and he for me. I know that the God who brought us to this place will continue to lead and guide and bless. I can trust Zach with my heart and my future because I trust God. ?? I can’t imagine a sweeter place to be. Zach and I are planning ninety-three years of married bliss, and praying for twenty-four children. Yes, we continue to be odd. It has worked well for us so far.

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

Genevieve SmithIssacharian Daughter

Notes:I have sent this email to girls who have embraced a vision of victorious daughterhood as well as those who may be thinking about doing so (and even to some girls who may just like some encouragement regarding different areas of home life). Some of the girls are in the USA, UK, Australia and other parts of the world. Most are in New Zealand. You are welcome to forward this email on to others so long as you do so in its entirety. If you do not want to receive these emails please just send a return email to me stating that fact. If you know of other girls who would be encouraged by receiving these emails, feel free to forward the email to them or send me their email address.Locations of visitors to this page

Issacharian Daughters – ID063

pdf of Issacharian Daughters – ID063 – click on link below for correct layout and photos


Monday, 5 November 2007Dear Girls,

The Courting Chair?? Part 3

Amy I brought home with me one final costume project. It took me a few days to finish this up and mail it back to South Dakota, but I knew as soon as it arrived. Zach e-mailed to let me know. He also asked a few questions. I replied, answering his questions. He e-mailed me back. I told Daddy about the e-mails, and he gave his blessing to our correspondence, so long as I kept him involved and aware of what was going on. I began forwarding all e-mails to him for review.

Knowing that Dad, and usually Mom as well, were reading all the e-mails we exchanged was great. It was both a check on what I wrote, and a protection for my heart. It required me to be open with my parents, and in so doing, gave me the wonderful blessing of having them on my side. As I got to know Zach, they did too. They liked him almost as much as I did.

The e-mails continued. We passed from costumes to daily life, the development of the Fiddlers Three’s summer music show, political campaigns we were both involved in, heady intangibles like goodness, truth, and beauty, and all sorts of things. Sometimes e-mails passed back and forth on a daily basis. Sometimes several days elapsed in between. I enjoyed the correspondence immensely, but there were challenges too. I still didn’t know quite what Zach’s intentions were. I tried to guard my heart and maintain a friendship-type relationship. As I got to know Zach better and better, that was harder to do. I could see we fit well together, and I found myself looking for signs he agreed.

I remember an interchange of e-mails that was particularly significant. The Fiddlers Three were performing The Great American Adventure show five nights a week in Keystone, South Dakota, right in the shadow of Mt. Rushmore. The show was organized around the four presidents depicted on the mountain. Even though the show had begun, it was still being developed and perfected. One night Zach e-mailed me excitedly, telling me that a member of that night’s audience had suggested a quote of Teddy Roosevelt’s to use in his closing remarks. He didn’t have the quote yet, but he remembered the gist of it, and thought it would be perfect! A few days later, on July 3rd, he e-mailed the quote and asked my opinion. I read it, and my heart sank. I didn’t like it a bit. It sounded grand and glorious, and taken in its context, it may have been. But taken alone, the quote sounded as if he expected America to take the role of God and save the world.

I didn’t want to tell Zach I didn’t like this??perfect ?? quote from one of his heroes, but he had asked for my honest opinion. So, I prayed for grace to put it well, and told him what I thought. As I sent that e-mail, I prayed he would not be offended?? that he would see what I saw in the quote. Then, I waited. Zach’s next e-mail relieved and delighted me. He told me on reading that??perfect ?? quote, he had found it disappointing and uncomfortable. He knew it wasn’t right, but had sent it to me to see what I thought. And then I told him why he didn’t like it. I was so thankful?? and there was something more. Somehow, at that point, I was sure. This was The Man.

Zach This email exchange was the turning point in the way I saw Amy, too. We had corresponded regularly throughout the spring and early summer, and I had been further delighted with her femininity, her love for God and her quick mind. During this time I was laboring to hone and perfect the Great American Adventure show. As my conversations with Amy progressed, I began to see how instrumental she was in shaping the story we were trying to tell on stage. She eagerly dived into deep discussions about the concepts that would drive our message and brought ideas to me that were right along the lines I was looking for, but that I would never have seen on my own.

When I got Teddy’s quote mentioned above, I knew it wasn’t right; I knew I couldn’t use it. While I was trying to articulate my thoughts, I sent the quote to Amy. When her email returned, I found she was able to put into words the very things I saw in the quote and didn’t like. And she told me in such a delightful way: very quiet and unassuming, yet completely frank and straightforward. As I sat contemplating her response, I realized Amy was proving she really did know how to be my help-meet. I was not yet sure she was God’s will for me, but could see that she was for real.

This began the most challenging season of our relationship, as I started wrestling with the appropriate time to begin our courtship. It was plain Amy and I were becoming more and more attached. On the one hand, I wanted very much to speak with Jack about my intentions, declaring that I was deeply interested in Amy and was seeking God’s will in the matter. On the other hand, I knew this would inevitably cause an even deeper attachment between us that could end in much deeper hurt if we did not end up getting married.

My father and I had many long discussions. His counsel was invaluable. He liked Amy very much, too, and was able to see many things about how the relationship should proceed. We knew courtship must not be entered into lightly, and should only be brought to a close for two reasons: either something serious comes up to show that the couple is not compatible, or it is decided that marriage is God’s will and engagement is the next step. Thus, a courtship should be begun only when the couple is sure that they can accept and love each others’ quirks and idiosyncrasies. When they begin courting, they give up the right to end their relationship over small matters.

As I considered my relationship with Amy, I had to admit that we didn’t know one another all that well. All told, we had spent a little less than a month together. I didn’t really know what her quirks were, nor even if she had any! (Since then I’ve come to know and love these distinct aspects of her personality. The way God has made this to work is delightful.)

I decided to wait and watch a little longer. During this period, Jack mentioned he was reading our emails. I was delighted. 1 Timothy 5:2 exhorts young men:??Treat older women as mothers, younger women as sisters, in all purity. ?? 1 Thessalonians 4:1-7 commands us not to defraud one another in the guy-girl relationship. It requires of us the most honorable conduct. Thus it was my responsibility to love Amy as a sister, to help her guard her heart and to guard my own. To have Jack involved in all our conversations would help ensure that our relationship stayed within the bounds of friendship.

Several weeks passed. I became more aware of Amy’s excellent qualities, and I loved her for them. I still wasn’t sure I knew much about the smaller things, but I was sure that there couldn’t be very many that could cause me to give her up.

Amy As our correspondence continued through the summer, and into the fall, I was not always as sure about where our relationship would end up as I had been on that July day when we exchanged our thoughts on Teddy’s quote. Was Zach really interested in something more than friendship? He spent a lot of time e-mailing me and I was not blind to the fact that he often sent me e-mails late at night?? though he was not a late night person. Other things encouraged me too?? like when he used the birth of his best friend’s baby as a springboard to ask me what I thought about home vs. hospital births, or when he asked me what sort of home decorating I liked, or told me that I reminded him of Betsy Ross because of my sewing skills, and proceeded to call me??Betsy. ?? What I found less encouraging was the fact that he continued not to make any intentions he had clear.

One of the challenges of this thing we call??courtship ?? is that there are many different nuances of meaning to the word. Different families and individuals mean different things by it. In my family, courtship is viewed as something to be entered into when a man sees in a lady the indications that she has the qualities he is looking for in a wife. The purpose of the relationship is then to get to know each other better, with her father’s help and blessing, to see if the potential is reality. Do they fit together? Can they agree on important issues? Can he lead her? Can she follow and help him? Is there mutual attraction? The way Zach and his family viewed courtship had similarities, but it was more serious. He would not enter into courtship until he was much more sure. Of course I did not know this. As the summer waned, and fall began, Zach was waiting to be sure, and I was still wondering if he was interested.

This is one of the places that my parents’ involvement proved such a blessing. I knew that, try as I might, I could not guard my heart completely. Having their help, support, love, prayers, and counsel, was a great blessing. They knew I wanted Zach, and they wanted him, too. They were getting to know him better right along with me, and they saw what I saw?? what a good, faithful godly man he was, how we fit together in calling, interests, personalities, and talents. They prayed with and for me that God would lead and guide, that, if it was His will, He’d bring to pass what appeared to us such a good thing. I know my daddy thought long about going to Zach and asking him point blank what his intentions towards me were. When he talked about it with me, I didn’t say much. I wanted to know where Zach stood too, but I didn’t want to pursue him?? even through my father. I wanted my daddy to do what he thought was best in order to protect me, but I wanted my man to be a man, to stand up and pursue me without the nudging of my dad.

As e-mails continued and our friendship grew in the autumn months, I became more and more convinced this path was leading to marriage. I could see God’s hand so very present in the details?? from broken RV generators and costume projects, to the striking similarity of our goals and interests. During my years of waiting I had often wished I knew who my man was, and what he was called to. Then, I felt, I would be better able to prepare myself to help him. Time and again when this burden pressed upon me, God would reassure my heart,??You do not have to know. I know, and I can prepare you just as easily whether you know his calling or not. ?? Now, as I was getting to know Zach better, I was seeing that I was formed to help him. I could not have prepared myself better if I had known him for years. Only God could have made us fit so well, and allowed us to meet across so many miles. I could see His hand bringing us together, and a peace settled in my heart.

˜ ??During the fall I began to work on a project inspired by Zach. His love of American history, and nickname for me of Betsy Ross inspired my dad to suggest that I make him a flag. At first I thought such a gift might be a little presumptuous. But as time passed, and I became more and more sure that Zach was the man I had been created for, I liked the flag idea better and better. I searched on-line to find as much information as possible on the Betsy Ross flag. Then I found wool bunting?? the proper fabric to make an authentic Colonial flag. I began work on the flag in September?? not sure at that point if it would be appropriate for me to give a gift with such obvious significance to Zach. I thought of making it a Lautenschlager family gift, perhaps. But as I sewed thirteen red and white stripes together by hand, and double-appliquéd thirteen stars onto the blue canton, it was for Zach most especially that I was sewing. And as I sewed for him, I prayed for him too, through many hours.

I talked with my parents about my quandary. Would it be too forward to give Zach such a gift? Daddy said he would think about it. One morning, several days later, he came to wake me up and told me that he thought it would be okay for me to give the flag to Zach for his birthday. I lay in bed for several minutes very happy?? knowing that I could trust God to lead through my father. If he said it was okay, then it was. I found a box and folded the flag?? perhaps fifty hours of work and prayers. Never had I been so eager to give a gift.

˜ ?? Zach That flag flies on the wall above my desk as I write. It is a constant reminder of the wonderful woman God has given me, despite my lack of experience in trying to win her.

By early fall, I had decided Amy had the qualities I was looking for. I knew I wanted to court her, and if it was God’s will, to marry her. Around this same time, the Bentleys decided to return to South Dakota for a visit. I counseled with my father, my grandfather, and a trusted friend on whether I should call Jack and discuss courtship on the phone, or wait until they arrived to begin things in person. All three counseled me to wait to discuss this serious subject face to face. At that time it did seem the most prudent.

But after several more weeks, I began to see that Jack needed to know what to expect when they arrived at the Lautenschlager home. It was time, past time to declare my intentions. About three weeks before the Bentleys were to leave Mobile, and with my father’s full blessing, I called Jack. I told him I was very interested in his daughter and asked his permission to court her with the purpose of seeking God’s will for marriage.

The first thing he said was,??Zach, you have excellent taste. ?? He granted his permission and we discussed the meaning of the word courtship and found complete agreement with the following statement:

Courtship is the period of time in which the couple and their families seek God’s will concerning marriage to each other. The commitment level during this time is greater than before a courtship is begun, but not as great as the betrothal (or engagement), when the couple has covenanted to be married. The entire courtship period is couched in the context of marriage, and marriage is the stated goal unless God gives clear direction to the contrary. Each side is free to end the courtship if they believe marriage truly is not God’s will, but it is the prayer of all that in that case, God will give clear direction early in the relationship and that all involved will agree.

He asked me if I had my parents consent and blessing to seek Amy as my wife, and I had the joy of telling him that not only my parents, but even my grandparents were with us 100%. We also discussed how I would ask Amy. As we would all be together soon, I decided to speak to her in person, and Jack gave his blessing.

Looking back, I believe a better course would have been to speak with Jack several weeks earlier, as soon as I was sure Amy was the one. To wait any longer was not fair to Amy or her family. But God is so good. Amy has explained how He used my blunder to build her trust in Him and speak peace into her heart. (…To be Continued! ??)

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

Genevieve SmithIssacharian Daughter

Notes: I have sent this email to girls who have embraced a vision of victorious daughterhood as well as those who may be thinking about doing so (and even to some girls who may just like some encouragement regarding different areas of home life). Some of the girls are in the USA, UK, Australia and other parts of the world. Most are in New Zealand. You are welcome to forward this email on to others so long as you do so in its entirety. If you do not want to receive these emails please just send a return email to me stating that fact. If you know of other girls who would be encouraged by receiving these emails, feel free to forward the email to them or send me their email address. Locations of visitors to this page


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