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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Quick Update

Everything has been going well here down South. Yesterday I had my first day at my new job: A barista at Starbucks! We don't receive any type of salary yet from the gifts you send, so the main purpose of getting a job is to be able to eat and to continue in our giving. It is also an excellent way to connect with lost people. So far I enjoy my co-workers and supervisors, and the work is fun. Tonight I'm helping with a ropes course at Perimeter church here in Duluth, and I'm pretty excited about that as well.

Patrick started potty training this week (some of you readers will be interested to know), and has an Elmo starting potty. As Elmo is one of Patrick's favorite things, he always gets super excited to go. 

At the end of this week Maggie and I will be celebrating our 1st and 2nd anniversaries. We were in the hospital for the first one, and the second one was squeezed out by Patrick's 1st birthday celebration, and our move out of our apartment.  So we're pretty excited to celebrate by taking white water kayak lessons! We decided that instead of nice gifts for our anniversary, we'd rather do fun things together, and this was at the top of the list! 

Be looking for pictures and our August update soon!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Worship

In accordance with the Deuteronomy 6 commands and exhortations to keep the Word on my mind at all times, I try and listen to a lot of sermons during the week, where a Bible passage is exegeted and applied. My favorites remain John Piper, Alistair Begg, and James MacDonald (although I'm going to start listening more to Tim Keller as well).

But I hadn't listened to a lot of worship music. Part of this is because of when doing my internship at a camp back in '09, worship music was played as background music during meals, and pretty much during any part of the day. I'm against this, as I've found that it became easy to "tune out", and inevitably even "zone out" even during church while people are worshiping God. What a tragedy!

Recently, however, decided that I needed new music with which to express my worship for God. I bought, and recommd the Passion 2012 White Flag album. It's reviving to worship with sing new songs. It's so important to keep the Word on our minds and in our hearts, and just as important continue to find new ways to ascribe worship to God! I strongly encourage you to try and do something along these lines sometime!


Oh sing to the LORD a new song;
sing to the LORD, all the earth!
(Psalm 96:1 ESV)

Monday, August 13, 2012

Loving God Through Transitions

Are you in transition of any sort? Is the Spirit leading you to a new place, in or out of a relationship, starting or leaving a job, starting of finishing school, having a child or losing a loved one? If you followed our blog over the last year and a half, you know that we are well versed in transition. To sum it up, it looks something like this:

12/09 Finish School
1/10 Jonathan to Ecuador for 6 wks
2/10 We got married
3/10 Back to Ecuador for Maggie's internship
5/10 Back to the US, start temporary jobs
6/10 Move to GA for a month, work on my father-in-laws campaign, Find out we're pregnant
7/10 Back to Ohio, start training for new job w. University
2/11 Patrick born, my grandmother has a stroke, my mom comes back to the US
3/11 Sense that God is leading us out, start application with the mission
5/11 Move out of duplex, not sure how long missions application will take--live with friends
8/11 Travel to Costa Rica--accepted as youth leaders by AMCA
9/11 Move into appartment, my grandmother moves into nursing home
10/11 accepted with Reach Global, begin support raising (how in the world do we do that?!?)
2/12 Move out of apartment, back in with friends. On the road 2 week/mo
6/12 spend a month in GA
7/12 Travel to Ohio and MI for the month
8/12 Move to GA
Currently: looking for part time work while raising support for the mission field.

As we sensed the Lord leading us to Costa Rica, we threw ourselves into going to Costa Rica with all that we had. It still is our goal, and we work at it to the best of our abilities. But something changed between then and now. In the midst of all of the support raising and traveling, we realized that this had become first goal and focus in life: we must get to Costa Rica! The Spirit has revealed, and the students need further discipling.

How, in all of our desire to follow God and pour our lives out for the Gospel we somehow forgot the essence of being a Christian. Love God with everything; and Love people.

Transitions are distracting because we find ourselves looking at where we're going, or where we came from. It's easy to mourn the past, or be excited about the future. And those are both right to do. Just don't let them cloud your sight of what it means to be a Christian. Your primary goal as a follower of Christ is to love our God, and love those around us. Wherever you are now. Not just where you are going, or where you came from.

May we be doers, and not only hearers.


Tuesday, August 7, 2012

An important 10 Seconds


I haven't watched much of the Olympics this year. But I was recently able to watch Track and Field's 100m race. The speed of these Olympians amazes me. What baffles me is that they spend 4+ years training for a race that only last 10 seconds. In a fraction of a minute, they either won gold or lost. They don't have a chance to do it again. All have to wait 4 more years to get the opportunity to prove themselves as worthy of the gold.


It made me think of this temporal life in light of eternity. I know Jonathan shared a video on the blog a while back about this, but I was reminded of this again. Olympians have one purpose, to win the gold, and they push themselves towards it. They spend hours at the gym and restrict their diets. As Christians, we have one purpose: to glorify God.

You either love Christ or you don't. You either glorify God with your life or you don't. It isn't just 4 years, it's a whole lifetime that we strive for just this one goal-- that God would be glorified. It isn't a 10 second race, it's an either you are or you are not. The best Olympian gets the gold, but all who believe in Christ get eternal life. With eternal life, the gold is not something you remember the glory of the moment; it is glory that you experience forever!