Monthly Archives: January 2012

BBandB.

No, not Bed, Bath and Beyond.  Stay with me though if you want to see a way God works in the lives of His beloved children.

We have been thinking through so many living options the past couple months.

  1. Spend savings on a down payment for a house we’re not in love with… and so we have been saving and paying off Micah’s loan slowly, house hunting exhaustively with a realtor, and meeting with Wells Fargo.
  2. Keep renting our apartment for a higher cost till we know what we are doing (higher cost, same size not my idea of ideal)… but we became content with the idea of sharing a small space for more money if we had to.
  3. Rent a bigger place for more money… but then why not just buy…
  4. Or, offered back in September and brought up again this month – live with our friend from church.

#4 isn’t the first time we have been offered such generosity.  When Micah and I were first married our friends in Harrisonburg let us live in their cabin while we got on our feet, while our heads were still in lovey dovey clouds. 

Our friend’s wife passed away last spring, and he lives in a very large house by himself.

I asked him, “Are you sure?” 

His boys are grown and out of the house.

He mentioned that he had been praying about a couple singles or a married couple sharing the space with him.  That he would love to serve us in this way.

“You know if you accept us, there are three of us, and not only three of us, one of which will cry a lot, but we will have people coming to see the baby all summer long”. 

He said, “live in visitors were more than welcome, that he had plenty of extra rooms for them”, and that “he would like the practice being a grandfather”.

The house is about 20 minutes from my job and our church and about 10 minutes away from Micah’s current job. 

Just a little update incase people didnt know…

  •  I go on leave in June to be with the baby. 
  •  Micah’s job “technically ends” in June for at least the summer until they get the budget for the next school year.

We prayed.  We contemplated.  We waited.  We discussed.  We decided.

And… by March 1st, we will have packed up most of our belongings and moved them into a storage unit.

  • Live with someone else.  {swallow pride now}
  • Live with some of our possessions so that we don’t over take his home. {swallow materialism now}
  • Start our “new little family/parenting” in someone else’s home {swallow ideals now}
  • People might think we’re crazy, I can imagine the questions, opinions, etc {swallow what other’s think now}
  • Micah and I have always prayed though that we would accomplish more for the Lord together than we ever could for Him apart.  I don’t know what kind of doors this is opening or shutting, but I do know that we are being taken care of and that opportunities like this don’t just “come around” every year{swallow “what in the world does God have for us next” now}
  • I can be with the baby this summer, and learn about becoming a mother, not worrying about my 60% Short Term Disability income and our savings covering the bills. {swallow and cry tears of joy and relief now}
  • Micah can look for jobs – stress free. {hit knees in thankfulness now}

We don’t have a set date on how long we will stay on “Muffin Man Lane” or the Borges Bed & Breakfast (BB&B) as Scott likes to call it, but I believe that we will all ministering to each other in many ways this summer.  Scott, Micah, the baby, me, the visitors… I think it’s going to be a fabulous, selfless summer, learning to serve in many ways!

I think it will give us time to be still and see what the Lord has for us next…

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Son or Daughter?

I can feel the baby move a little more every day.

I’m a tad bit nervous about Thursday (the big ultrasound).  Mostly though I am praying for peace no matter how God is fearfully and wonderfully making our son or daughter.

What’s it going to be?

little boy?

or

little girl?       

Sanctity of a Soul.

Ephesians 5:11 Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them

This blog started off VERY different.

It started off in a rant about abortion because of something I had read on CNN this morning… well comments someone made on an article.

Disclaimer: I know women who have made the decision to have an abortion and this is not to be a reminder to you or anyone else, so if you fit in that category, please don’t read this I don’t want to bring up past shame or hurt.  If you have been forgiven and freed from that, live in it, and cherish it, like we do with all we have been forgiven of.

1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness

Tbe article comment went something along the lines of this: “babies aren’t humans until they are born at 9 months old, they are parasites until then”.  Then of course there were your typical comments, “people aren’t going to stop having sex, so of course unwanted pregnancies are going to occur, people will never stop having abortions”, yada yada.

So instead of going off on how much I think that is disgusting, selfish and downright wrong (especially now that I am pregnant), some wise girlfriends told me… why not focus on the truth of life vs. going off about other’s views.  Good idea ladies, thank you for your wisdom and perspective.

I have a friend that had a baby at 25 weeks gestation.  Her beautiful son is certainly a human, and he was definitely not born at 9 months, way before it.  I saw him in the hospital as doctor’s fought endlessly for his human life, and as we all prayed without ceasing, and I have seen him since as a thriving little boy.

Just this morning I said to Micah, I can’t believe I have a little soul in me.  I can’t feel the babe yet and I don’t know its gender.  I don’t even know how it is doing.  We have our big ultrasound on February 2nd

At 19 weeks my child would probably not survive if it were born this early, BUT, it does have its bones, it has skin, eyes, ears, a digestive track, fingers, toes, etc!  

Psalm 139: 15-16 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, Your eyes beheld my unformed substance. In your book were written all the days that were formed for me, when none of them as yet existed.

I know that in His word, the psalmist proclaims “I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.”

I know that in His word, speaking about Jeremiah He says, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.” And I don’t think He means He just knew Jeremiah either.

There are many other amazing verses that speak of my Creator’s infinite knowledge of human life, and because of these I can know and appreciate the sacredness of human life, because He does.

I realize that I look at everything from a biblical lens and many do not.  Still though… think about the miracle of conception, and birth and all the ones walking around!  It is truly amazing.  To anyone who claims they want to see a miracle, consider your life.

Throughout pregnancy the doctors offer you all kinds of tests you can get, to see if your baby is “normal”, if it will have a “normal” life.  I’m not saying there is anything wrong with getting those tests, but if I were to choose not to have my baby because the tests show “something,” there is something very wrong with that. 

I will not get the tests done, although it would allow more planning and preparation if we had to prepare for something unexpected.  I will carry the child no matter what.  My body is not my own anyway! It was bought with a price by the blood of Christ and I am to glorify Him with it.  Not decide what would be ideal, convenient, easiest, better for me, etc.

Look at these images and be amazed, not disturbed and just pray for an understanding and appreciation of life. 

 John 8:32- and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.

If you want to read some sermons or artciles by pastor John Piper, download is ebook here.

Is Marriage for Holiness and/or Happiness?

by Micah.

After a year and a half of marriage, I can honestly say that I love it. 90% of the time, when Sarah and I are alone, we are just as happy with one another as you see us in public. (just a lot more goofy). In fact, we suppress our giddiness for one another while others are around. There is, however, another 10% or so that we are in disagreement with one another about one thing or another. It’s usually something that has grown out of selfishness and a desire to be pleased by the other, and it takes the most frequent form of different opinions concerning cleanliness or lack thereof. (“Cleanliness is next to Godliness” is not part of God’s written word to us; although I think that Sarah is more tempted to add that principal than any other!)

One way that I let my sin deceive me is by instinctively having a desire to always get along, and to change that 90% to 100%. I tell myself that things would be easier; that we would actually be engaged in a healthier relationship if we were not disagreeing, and that the joy of our marriage would increase if we saw eye-to-eye on everything. This is a horrendous misconception and does not allow the Holy Spirit to change us. This desire is much more selfish even than me wanting things “my way!”

I forget that in part, marriage is meant to change us and make us more like Jesus. I am quick to overlook the practical implications of Sarah and I entering into a covenant relationship. We were given to each other as a gift to encourage, love, remind, help, lead, rebuke, and change one-another. These situations allow the Holy Spirit to work in us as they lead to being more joyful. It helps us be changed more into who we are as God’s children and how we were created to love each other and God being made in the image of God.

Sarah and I read in a book, “what if marriage is to make you holy, and not happy.” We agreed and quoted this for a time, but these are not contradictory ends! Sarah, being used as God’s instrument of changing me to be more like Jesus, is a gift to me to change me. Yes, she makes me happier, but when she is being used by God to reveal my selfishness, it is not something to dread, it’s something to celebrate. Christians learn to realize that suffering is a gift for the purpose of looking forward to the hope of the Glory of God (Romans 5:1-4), and so is each and every opportunity that I have to serve my darling wife. Our relationship is a catalyst to team up with one another to better be prepared for the Divine Marriage after we die. It’s to make us both happy, and holy. This is because true happiness for the person who by faith loves Jesus, is evidenced by a love of becoming more holy.

For Christmas, Sarah bought “The Meaning of Marriage” by Tim Keller. I highly recommend it whether you’re single, married or divorced. The thoughts above were initiated by reading a chapter of it last night!

#firstworldproblems.

I first heard this term when our water filter at work broke. 

A sign went on the filter that said something along the lines of:

 “Please don’t use this filter to fill up your Nalgene bottles,  then there is no filtered cold water for people who just want a glass during the day, thank you – the management”. 

Underneath of this typed up note in scribbly permanent marker was written:

 “#firstworldproblems”- (no doubt written by one of our hilarious graphic artists).

Every since I saw that though, I think about it, what consists as first world problems?  Since seeing that sign I see and hear that phrase used jokingly all the time, and usually in very true contexts.

One way I am learning to apply this is the way I think about our living situation now that we have a baby on the way.

It is mentally exhausting to house hunt working with a smaller budget and not liking certain areas of your city, and not knowing what will happen with jobs.  You might be thinking… why are you even house hunting then?

Haha here is why we have been house hunting- 

I have it in my little head that I should bring a baby home to… a home. 

Not an apartment and not a place that will be in transition, a place we are already almost too big for without our little one.  I picture a place where our child can go outside and explore and discover God’s creation and about itself.  Where I can let him or her ride their bike and not have to worry about the street.  I picture a place that does not have a busy road because they should be able to hear the crickets on summer nights and birds and lawn mowers in the spring and summer mornings.  I picture a porch where we can sit on rockers or our Adirondacks and drink sweet tea and lemonade.  I picture a yard where I can grow a little garden and teach them that God’s bounty and provision comes from sowing and reaping, and honestly a lot of hard work for little fruit, but that it doesn’t just come from groceries stores, and that other people work really hard to give our bodies nutrition. 

I could really go on and on but I’m getting choked up and I don’t want to right now.

I blame my parents; I had the coolest neighborhood ever.  Imagine tons of children playing in the meadow, making forts, riding bikes, popping tar bubbles, chasing frozen custard trucks, camping in backyards, etc.  Just kidding mom and dad, I wouldn’t trade it for a second, you just set the standards high is all 😉

Wanting a home, even that meets the description I gave above are not sinful things, none of these things are too much, too extravagant, etc.  But you know what they are?…. yep.  #firstworldproblems

My girl Court and I are studying worry and anxiety, the book of Matthew is a huge reference for this topical study and you know what is said in them: that God clothes the lilies of the field and he feeds the birds of the air.  How much more will he care for us?!

And then in Luke 9:58,

And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.”

You know why?  Because this earth was NOT His home.  He knew where His home was.  In heaven where He was before the world began.

You know what is true for God’s children?  This is not our home.  We were made for heaven.  This earth is temporary. 

That isn’t the message we are inundated by daily by the world though…”need a nice home, need a garage, need a job with full benefits, need a 5 year plan, need investments, yada yada yada, the list goes on!  And it’s not that these things are bad in and of themselves, it’s just that they aren’t everything and they certainly are not the most important.  Most people in this world don’t own their own homes, they don’t have clean water, they struggle for food, they don’t have access to health care, etc etc!

So you see, my mind is struggling with #firstworldproblems.

Everything material on this earth is temporary and will not last.  So what kind of important home life do I want to sow in my babies?  Character, dependence on Christ, grace, truth, forgiveness, mercy, discipline, self-control and of course homemade meals, cuddle time, story hour and all those other fun things.

This is the truth though, I can do that in an apartment and we are MORE than blessed to be able to do that.  We have a roof over our head, we have more than enough food on the table, we have almost every gadget you could need, we have clothes on our back and too many in our drawers and closets, the list goes on and on.  In all honesty, the apartment feels small because we have a lot of stuff we don’t need, but sure make aspects of life fun and enjoyable. 

So in reality, we have no idea whether we will buy or keep renting in the next 2 months, 6 months, or year.  But He knows our days, the number of hairs on our head, our sitting up and our standing, our thoughts… He certainly knows what He has planned for us and that’s enough to take comfort in.  It’s not up to me to figure it all out.  I know these things; it’s just a matter of reminding myself and believing them.

He has always guided us; we have no reason to believe He won’t still and every reason to believe He will.  We are thankful for today, for His provision today and yesterday. 

“If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.” – C.S. Lewis

oh and please, someone tell this pregnant lady she is not alone in this? what are your #firstworldproblems?