Sunday, September 25, 2011

Fall Update and surgery

Our 2nd fall at covenant seminary has begun. Even though we technically moved here last July, life was so crazy that we don’t count it until August ;) I predicted it would take us about a year to feel settled and I can honestly say that’s true. We have really plugged into our church and feel as though we are truly apart of the community. I’ve been serving on the worship team since Feb and also have the privilege of serving on the women’s ministry team. We are both learning a ton. School is mentally challenging, yet spiritually refreshing. Our marriage has been strengthened as we continue to learn to communicate and value one another better. We have learned some of our pitfalls and we are fighting hard to prevent them. We are truly engaging with our hearts – delighting in the joys of life and embracing better the sorrows. The kids are at such a fun age. They turned 2 on May 1st and they are such a delight to us right now. Their vocabulary expands every day and it’s so fun to see them relate to each other and to others. They have such a special relationship. I’m so thankful the Lord gave them to us. Ben and I read “To Train up a Child” and “Creative Family Times” this summer and both books were so helpful in our approach to them. We have noticed that the more consistent we are, the happier they are. I’m taking them through some character training this semester and we are focusing on one quality a week. We have short training times each day where I am role playing and teaching them to be obedient, kind, ect. when we are NOT in the moment of disobedience. I use a few simple sheets I ordered that have a character quality with a corresponding bible verse. I tweek it a lot but it helps to keep me sharing God’s word with them.
As we sense the Lord’s presence and protection in our lives, we are also keenly aware of Fall and it’s effects on our relationships and our lives. My health has been an ongoing battle for me, and this summer my dentist found some bone reabsorption in an area of my mouth where I had knocked out 3 teeth due to an accident in high school. I will be having oral surgery in a few days and this is a significant due to my osteoporosis. It is a pretty intensive procedure where they will be doing a complete extraction of my previous dental work, bone grafting, and later a metal implant. Their will be a series of surgeries- each a few months apart to allow time for healing- concluding in about a year. There is concern that the bone graft won’t take because of one of the side effects of an osteoporosis medication that I took. Also, this will be a major financial strain for us. I am quite nervous and your prayers would be greatly appreciated.

Masters in Counseling

The Lord continues to take me on a journey of trusting Him, facing my past, repenting of the ways I seek life outside of Him, and truly engaging in the present. This past year there were some extremely difficult months as I wrestled with the Lord in the depth of my heart. Sometimes I wish my journey were over, that I was “healed”, more complete than I am. But the Lord continues to unfold my story as he does pages of a book, as my heart is more and more ready to process the things of my past. Somehow, in my broken humble state the Lord seemingly uses me in the lives of others around me often to my own amazement. Just as we experience the already, not yet in our spiritual journeys, I am not yet finished dealing with the pain and memories of my past. Instead of keeping me from fully engaging and being present in the lives of others, it is what the Lord uses most in my interaction with the broken lives and stories of those around me. In a class I took this summer and a generous compliment from a professor, along with various other things, we have felt the Lord leading me to pursue a degree in counseling. My ability to take classes here is a tremendous blessing and one I do not take for granted. I’m so thankful to Ben for being so supportive of me and sacrificing his time and energy in order to make this desire a possibility. The Lord has also continued to provide neighbors to swap childcare and meet other needs along the way. My approach will be non-traditional as Ben and I seek to juggle our class schedules with caring for the twins. I will be in school all year, taking many classes in January and summers when Ben’s load is lighter. The Lord has made it clear that this is the road He has me on, which is both exciting and terrifying all at the same time.

Class updat 8/1/2011

In the spring semester I took New Testament History and Theology. I loved this class and all the richness and depth it has brought to my understanding of the bible and of Jesus' ministry here on earth, how to interpret the bible and to teach that to others. It was so wonderful to have a framework to hang many of the New Test bible studies I have done previously. There was alot of reading for this class, hence why there was not much time for hobbies (like blogging :)) I've learned that while maximizing on my ability to be in school right now, I have to say no to many other things I enjoy or even "need" to do in order to keep my priorities at the top.
Right after class ended for us both, we packed up and made our "great adventure" down south to see family and friends. After traveling for two weeks with 2 two year olds, we were so glad to be home! Ben started school the next day, and I had a few weeks before my summer intensive class began.
This summer I took Educational Foundations, team taught by two of our professors. This class was so practical on how to educate the people in our churches and in our schools. It was such a wonderful class, I'm so glad I took it! It was basically all day long for two weeks, so Ben really sacrificed alot as well in order to enable me to go. I'm so thankful for his support and encouragement of me to engage in a degree program here. Although it takes my time, I'm learning that I function much better with some level of pressure- the home runs more smoothly, the laundry is all done (because it has to be), we have nutritional meals planned/prepared, and my heart and soul are fed. It gives me a focus and helps me to simplify.

Friday, September 9, 2011

BFF forever!

Playdates :)

Ben (and the kids) always leave me these sweet messages during bathtime on Monday nights when I'm gone to class.

Good friends at the Joe's Place Premier.