Saturday, August 30, 2008

What if...

What if you had a daughter and the guy she wanted to marry asked for your permission to marry her by saying this:

"I have now to ask, whether you can consent to part with your daughter early next spring, to see her no more in this world; whether you can consent to her departure, and her subjection to the hardships and sufferings of a missionary life; whether you can consent to her exposure to the dangers of the ocean; to the fatal influence of the southern climate of India; to every kind of want and distress; to degradation, insult, persecution, and perhaps a violent death. Can you consent to all this, for the sake of him who left his heavenly home, and died for her and for you; for the sake of perishing, immortal souls; for the sake of Zion, and the glory of God? Can you consent to all this, in hope of soon meeting your daughter in the world of glory, with the crown of righteousness, brightened with the acclamations of praise which shall redound to her Saviour from heathens saved, through her means, from eternal woe and despair?"

- Adoniram Judson, 1810

What would you say?

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Two Wonderful Years

A few weeks ago Andy and I traveled to Mexico to celebrate our two year wedding anniversary. However, we weren't in Mexico on our actual anniversary. Our anniversary fell on Tuesday August 26th. If you're a faithful In the Hedges blog reader, you'll recognize this as the day after our Perspectives class started. And if you know anything about Perspectives, it's a massive undertaking, particularly during the first week of the first class. Seeing as how we both didn't get to bed until about 1 am on Tuesday morning, we were both pretty wiped out on our anniversary! Despite this, we had a really sweet anniversary (both in Mexico and the actual day), and I am more in love with my husband now than I ever heave been (and I was pretty in love when we got married)!

Here are just a few things I love about being married and love about my husband:
  • Every night is like having a slumber party with my best friend.
  • Being able to have friends or even strangers over to our house for meals or to stay with us.
  • Friendship. Andy is my best friend in the whole world and my confidant. He gives wonderful and wise advice, listens well, and lets me cry on his shoulder when I'm upset.
  • Encouragement. Spiritually, personally, professionally.
  • Having challenging conversations that cause us both to think and re-think through things.
  • Doing home projects together and even doing things like cleaning house together. Basically just being together.
  • Partnership in ministry. I don't have to do things alone. I have a prayer partner and a ministry partner to serve the Lord with.
  • Laughter. Andy makes me laugh so hard sometimes I can hardly stand it!
  • And overall, all of this combined points me towards Jesus! Andy's love towards me is a reminder to me of how sweet the love of Christ is for his bride, the Church.
Here are a few pictures from our wedding. I'm pretty sure we're already looking older!!!

“When God engaged to create man and woman and to ordain the union of marriage, he didn’t roll dice or draw straws or flip a coin. He patterned marriage very purposefully after the relationship between his Son and the Church, which he planned from eternity. And therefore marriage is a mystery – it contains and conceals a meaning far greater than what we see on the outside. What God has joined together in marriage is to be a reflection of the union between the Son of God and his bride, the Church.”

-John Piper

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

From Lubbock to the Nations

Monday night was the first night of the Fall 2008 Perspectives class here in Lubbock. After many months of prayer and hard work, everything culminated in one crazy night. Despite the craziness of it all, things went really well! We had around 70 people who came and around 40 people who signed up. Todd Ahrend from the Traveling Team spoke on "The Living God is a Missionary God." I don't know about anyone else, but it was refreshing and exciting to hear all over again God's redemptive plan. It's not a new thing - it's woven throughout Scripture, and stretches from creation throughout the history of the Church, and is still going on today. I have been grafted in as his child because of this.

Perspectives is something that overwhelms me every time I put a class together. What we are doing is serious. People's life plans and dreams and being changed. I am praying that Lubbock would become a sending force of people to the nations. That people across the world who have never heard the name of Jesus would come to know him through people from Lubbock because of Perspectives. Would you join me in praying such a bold prayer?

Friday, August 22, 2008

A Sibling Photo Session

This last one is what we were going for all along. I had to bribe Andy for a regular smile though. You folks with children understand this scenario all too well. I don't have kids yet, but my husband is teaching me well for what to expect when we do.

Together at Last

A few weeks ago my brother-in-law and sister-in-law finally finalized the adoption of their daughter, Hannah Faith, from Guatemala. And a few months ago, they finalized the adoption of Noah John. So right before we left on vacation, we were able to finally hang out as a complete family. Here are some pictures of the babies, Andy's grandparents and parents, and of big brother Joel.

Here is little Hannah. She's absolutely beautiful. And she has the most beautiful hair. I think I'm jealous of her hair. Which is something I've never said of a baby before.
Here is Noah. He is a bouncing machine like no other. If you are in need of a serious arm workout, you've simply got to hold this kid. He will wear you out. But the smiles make it all worth it...

And let's not forget Joel. I had to sneak this picture while Andy had him upside down because he's in a not-taking-pictures phase these days. He loves his brother and sister though and he's a pretty funny kid.
Speaking of Joel loving his new brother and sister...
Look at the look on his face; I think he's smitten. And I have a hunch she might end up being a daddy's girl. And last, but not least, here's pictures of all of us enjoying being together.

What a joy it was to see Jason and Shannon with all their children - everyone finally together! Isn't God incredibly good? It's times like these that remind me of his goodness to us and his incredible faithfulness to his children. He hears our prayers and answers them.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

10 Things We've Decided Drive Us Crazy

As Andy and I were falling asleep last night, we were discussing things that drive us crazy. He asked the profound question - what is our list of 10 things that we've increasingly realized drive us crazy? Here is our list, in no particular order:

10. Cheap toilet paper.
9. Hardcore fundamentalists.
8. Jean shorts.
7. One-uppers (the person who always has to have one up on you with every story).
6. Undisciplined children.
5. Canned music.
4. Retired people who feel entitled to everything.
3. Pointless shopping.
2. Fast food.
1. Television

What would be on your list?

Valentin Imperial Maya

Like I said, we just got back from a five night stay at the Valentin Imperial Maya - an all inclusive resort in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. We had a wonderful time, and it was absolutely beautiful, albeit ridiculously hot. We enjoyed a snorkeling trip in Cancun, kayaking in the ocean, lots of great food and drinks, sleeping in a ton, and Andy enjoyed one day of feeling miserable. Here are a few fun pictures from our stay.

Catching Up

Andy and I got in late last night from our two year anniversary vacation to Mexico. I bought a new camera a few weeks ago, and just got a card reader in, so I've been uploading pictures from the last few weeks. Expect some catch up posts with lots of fun pictures soon...

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Do cowboys ride horses or cows?

Andy got a phone call today from Davis - our good friend's Kevin and Kristin's 4 year old boy. The conversation went something like this:

Davis: "Hi. Do cowboys ride horses or cows?" (No introduction, of course.)
Andy: "Hi Davis." (He figured out who it was on the other end right away.) "Cowboys ride horses."
And in the background, he hears Kristin yelling, "I told you so, Davis!"

Apparently they were having a very important argument about whether cowboys ride horses or cows. Davis insisted they ride cows (which I can admit would be logical), and to settle the argument Kristin suggested that Davis call Andy and ask him. Andy always wins arguments about such things, I can assure you.

Maybe they should be called horseboys?

(I thought this was a fun picture of Andy with Davis from last summer.)

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Oh Me of Little Faith

I've been terribly convicted recently about prayer. For starters, I have such a difficult time being consistent in prayer. It's nothing other than laziness and self-absorption, really. I suppose the root of this is that I don't really see my dire need for the Lord. If I did, I would certainly be in prayer more. On top of this, I don't think I really believe that the Lord answers my prayers, because I act surprised when he does.

For example, I have been getting on the elliptical, and I had decided that while I was on the elliptical I would pray. So I had been praying about a particular issue. When the Lord answered my prayer in an unusual way that week, I was shocked! It occurred to me while I was shocked that I was probably shocked because I didn't really think the Lord would answer my prayers. How convicting!

So, I pray that the Lord would make me aware of my desperate need for Him. I pray that He would allow me to come before Him with big prayers. And I pray that He would give me the faith to believe that He answers my prayers.

May He do the same with you!