Invade my heart, invade this broken town
The kingdom of the Heavens is buried treasure
Would you sell yourself to buy the one you’ve found?” -Jon Foreman – “Your love is strong.” Read More
You are such a ray of sunshine in our lives. The way that you giggle and talk to yourself fill up my heart with so much joy. I can’t believe how grown up you are becoming; walking and talking and chasing Toby every chance you get.
Now that we are living in Ann Arbor for the summer, we have begun to spend a lot of time outdoors, specifically around the U of M Campus. I like to load you up in the morning in the stroller and walk past the huge old buildings, the summer school students waking up with coffee and the freshmen who are here with their parents for orientation.
We passed a young, pretty girl and her parents this morning, as they scoured over a map and again as we walked through a tshirt shop where they bought University t-shirts and memorabilia. The parents looked so proud, excited; nervous and a little sad about their daughter beginning her time as a college student. It made me think; seventeen years from now, that will be us and that girl will be you.
Although it seems like lifetime away while you crawl underfoot and shake your little shoulders whenever music comes on, I know the truth. You will grow up. As much as I mourn that, I am thrilled for that because it is exactly what you are supposed to do.
As your parents, your Dad and I have the opportunity to prepare you, show you the world and guide you while you live in our home. My hope for you is that you would find yourself ready for life as a young adult. In addition to that, my two wishes are that you would know who you are and that you would experience how deeply God loves you.
You are still so little and yet, this morning, when I saw that girl going off to college, I saw you. I’m proud of you already, for the way that God will mold your little heart and use your life to bless others.
As your mama, I’m prayerful for two things: 1) that anything I do won’t stand in the way with my own agenda and dreams 2) my participation in your life and the things I can do to nurture you will rise to the top like cream.
Love you both now and then.
Every once in a while friends come along that feel more like family. We have been blessed with a few of these in our married life. People who we both like equally because let’s be honest, that isn’t always the case of all choices of married friends.
This weekend some of those friends came to visit with their three kids. Four kids under one roof, one dog, four parents and no air. But you know what? We made it work. More than that, we all made it great.
From the time they got here Friday night to the time they left on Sunday afternoon we showed them the goodness of summertime in Ann Arbor. This was the stroller crew everywhere we went:
Being goofy & enjoying the sights & sounds of the Summer Festival:
Saturday afternoon brought a day at the Lake because Grace, our church for the summer, was having their annual lake day. This place was awesome with multiple pavililons, a splash pad and a beach with a lake. We swam for most of the time we were there which meant the kids were worn out and everyone neeeded a nap when we got back.
Later that night, after we were rested and hungry, we hit up a new place. We gave them a clue that it started with M and ended with S. Kendra guessed McDonalds and while it was nice to know that kids are happy anywhere, we took them to Mark’s Carts. We have been wanting to try it since we stumbled upon it our first week here and it didn’t disappoint. There was Indian food, a grilled cheese cart, fresh seafood and wood fired pizza, just to name a few. The crew at Mark’s Carts:
Saturday night, after the kiddos were in bed, we made a pitcher of Sangria, something that was on my summer list to do. We also visited the world famous Zingerman’s for their meat cone, a bunch of special meats and cheeses in just that, a paper cone. Time on the porch with good friends after a long day in the sun was so refreshing.
Sunday brought church and our new normal routine at Grace. Our friends packed up after a lunch of pb &j and leftovers from the weekend. It was so fun to show them where we are and what we are up to. Toby appreciated it as well:Read More
There’s a woman in Ann Arbor who sits on her porch much of the day and talks to passerbys. It really doesn’t matter whether you’re a woman, man, family, or dog. She’s there not only to give you a smile like many other people in the neighborhood would, but she’s ready to meet with you and offer a kind word of encouragement during the busyness of your day. She’s right there to listen to your story, your journey, and your concerns in life. Now, many of you may be thinking that there’s no way you’d be vulnerable with this porch woman, I know that’s what I’d think, but you’d be amazed. This no average porch lady. It’s as if God himself specifically placed this woman on that porch for you. It’s as if this porch woman had a degree in counseling and was offering you a service worth $100/hour while asking nothing in return. Seems too good to be true, right? Maybe in a perfect world this woman exists. Well, I know she exists, because I’ve spent the last 7 years with this porch lady and when I get the opportunity to sit down on that porch with her, I see the love of Christ, I see God changing a people, I see a community changing. Churches discuss strategies of how to “reach out” all the time, but the porch lady knows the community better after just 2 weeks. Apparently, Christ’s kingdom breaking through into this world looks a lot like a woman sitting on her porch…who’d thought?Read More
I was sitting down with someone new the other day, which is now becoming a regular occurrence while living in Ann Arbor seeing as I don’t really know many people yet, and while we were talking for the first time he said something profound, “Ryan, I really just need a friend.” For some reason this really struck a chord with me. See, this guy isn’t the kind of person who’s rather awkward and so people tend to stay away from them, we all know the types, and if you don’t know what I’m talking about you’re probably that person. Quite the opposite really, this guy was really likable, successful, and has plenty of friends in the average sense of the word. However, during our discussion I quickly discovered that this guy doesn’t want to be average. He wants Jesus to mean something in his life. He wants to be called to something and he wants to journey life with some people that feel called. He says he wants a friend, but what he really wants is a fellow traveler, a disciple so to speak. I like this guy already.Read More