family fall 2016

family fall 2016

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Counterfeit

"The only thing worth counterfeiting is what's valuable. People make counterfeit currency and jewels, not counterfeit bottle caps or garbage. Because the truth of the gospel is priceless, we should expect it to be continuously counterfeited.

Bank employees are taught to identify counterfeit bills by handling the real thing- not by studying all the possible counterfeits. If you're not acquainted with the original, you can easily be deceived by an imitation...



Still, no matter how many counterfeit bills someone might come across, he should never conclude 'There's no such thing as real money.'

What the world needs is the GENUINE gospel, lived and proclaimed by a genuine church. Then it will reveal the counterfeits for what they are." - Randy Alcorn

Counterfeit gospels are sneaky. They look real good and contain partial truths.

This year, I was exposed to and studied a counterfeit gospel. It took me a while to recognize it.

It's a good gut check to remind yourself that there is some fabulous "Christian" writing/ teaching/ sermons/ etc out there

BUT... if it's not SCRIPTURE, it is at risk of being counterfeit. It may not be intentional counterfeit but human opinion can be deceiving.

Its a good challenge for me to acquaint myself regularly with the REAL thing.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Open Doors

Whew.. it's been awhile since I have written. We have been sitting around eating bon bons over here :)

7 years ago this month, my Jeremy was doing what he does best. Preparing. He had the spread sheet. Plan A, B, and most likely C. He took it to my dad to ask for my hand in attempt to show his 20 year old self could provide for us. And while I'm sure my dad did and continues to appreciate one of my husband's best qualities; dad responded with a statement that stuck like glue in Jeremy's mind. He continues to quote it often as we think about serving others.

"Son, I want to open doors for you and Kristin so that you can open them for others"

See, at the time we were both full time students with no income. Wanting to get married. With no earthly idea of what we were getting into.

Our parents have and continue to open doors for us. So have our teachers, mentors, friends, and employers.

The only way we have been able to steward 4 children and have anything left to pour out is first by the grace and strength of Jesus and then those open doors.
 
Sometimes these doors are intentional and sometimes very subtle.

Over the past 6 months, Jesus has brought 2 college aged girls into our lives by the strangest of circumstances. 2 girls who have aged out of the local foster care system. One our waitress. The other through multiple emails from unrelated sources. We were not looking for more doors to open. From an earthly measurement; we live in a mansion of closed doors with our kids alone.

These girls have had little to no door opening for them. In fact, they have had way too many seasons of doors being slammed in their face. Abuse. Lack of basic resources.  Poor education. Things I can't and frankly don't want to fathom.

But man they are fighters and overcomers. I am daily amazed at their restoration and hope. 

I don't know what the future holds for our relationship with them. But right now; we will continue to open the next door. A meal around our table. Financial advice. Therapy appointments. Job opportunities.

And we won't do it alone. Because Jesus has called some of our dear friends to open their doors too.

 Sometimes you will open a door. Stick your neck out there. Exhaust your resources and connections for another. And they won't walk through.

It's heart wrenching. You know it's not for their best. You're reputation may be bruised. But that's not our job. Our job is simply to open the door. How often Jesus must cup His head in His hands and say "I opened this door for you but you chose not to step through. Not yet anyway. HOLD FAST FRIENDS. OPEN THEM.

I know what you may be thinking. I have no doors to open. But reflect today. You're reading this aren't you? That in itself tells me you have education, resources in your computer or phone, and time (or maybe not and you should be getting off facebook :).

~kristin


Sunday, January 10, 2016

Memorization

One of the things that has kept me grounded this week was going back to an old habit with my girls.

Scripture Memorization

 I started weekly Scripture memorization in first grade and continued for the next 11 years thanks to my fabulous Christian education. Back then, it didn't mean much more to me than a grade in my Bible class each Friday but I have hidden those words in my heart and can bring them to mind easily now. I want that for my children as well. They won't be tested on them in the public school system  so it is an important discipline for us at home.

Our church has been going through John so I felt like these  memory prints were a perfect fit. I print them out each week and put it on the table next to our prayer family for the week. I also print extras for the girls to cut out and put up wherever they will see it to practice throughout the week.

Join us?

His word never returns void.

Friday, January 8, 2016

Ready for Boring

At the first of every month, especially January, I get all pumped up about goal setting and my personal rhythm for the life season we are in. As I mature, I (slowly) get better and better at giving myself grace when I don't meet all of those things I wrote down on paper.

Most of the things I include are "boring". You know. Dishes. Laundry. Meal planning. Putting Christmas away. Homework. Exercise. and so on. Those small moments of your day that you string together to make a life.

Since January 1st, I have done very few of those boring things. The past 8 days have been filled with one ER visit (negative blood clot in my leg thank you Jesus), 2 physical therapies, taking a sick day from work, 2 antibiotics, 5 probiotics, dentist, an endocrinologist appt, an orthopedic appt,  having the "becoming a young woman" talk, having the "why did God make me like this?" talk (again) and a partridge in a pear tree.

In the midst of what feels like a physical and emotional whirlwind, I thankfully hear His still small voice to TRUST HIM. My flesh wants to whine and often does but honestly; I am so thankful and blessed to live in a place with access to all of those places and professionals I listed above. I didn't drive over 20 minutes to any of those appointments. There are thousands of mothers all over the world who would give their life for their child to have healthcare like we have had this week.

Mabel will go back into surgery next Monday, January 11th to release her left hamstring. It's time. We are so committed to her healing but have hit a roadblock. This will be her 6th surgery in 3 years. Please join us in praying for boring. No complications. No excitement.

I just want to go back to glorifying Him in dishes and laundry and cooking for a little bit :)

 
When he takes her hand like that to guide her... melt my heart.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

3 years HOME

Some things never get old.
 
 Like when you step off the airplane for an adoption homecoming.
 
 Or become first time parents to two 5 year olds.

 Mabel and Portia, you are the JOY and GRACE of our lives. We count it great HONOR to be entrusted with your lives for the past 3 years and can't wait to see what Jesus has in store for you. You are both MIGHTY warrior princesses and we are so proud of you.



Thank you Ancelet Photography for our sweet, precious gift of this video.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Prayer Cards

Before throwing your Christmas cards out, consider making them into prayer cards on a board, basket, etc.



For the past 6 months, my girls have been choosing one family from our board to be our prayer focus for the week. Sometimes I will ask for requests from the family and sometimes I don't even tell them. It helps us take the focus outside of us and our kids to learn our people.

 We take their card down for the week and put it in the center of our dining table.

 We also have the names of our ministry partners, places of employment, worship, and schools on the board.

As people come into your home, have them add requests to the back of their cards. It is overwhelming to go back and see His faithfulness. I have prayed many of these new babies into the world.

So fun to see our 2016 board grow. We added lots of new faces with Jeremy starting a new job this year.


Blessings,
Kristin