Family Pix

Family Pix

Sunday, March 25, 2012

He must increase but I must decrease

Last night I went to bed early as I was very tired after a long week with Addy having pneumonia. I told myself I was going to skip my devotions for the night. But God had other plans. Instead, I decided to pick up now my favorite devotional that my parents gave me; My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers.

In my past few posts I have talked about struggling with my identity in Christ and just who I am as a follower, wife, mom, etc. I have been really seeking God and making sure he is with me each step of the way. As person that is type A and wanting to control every situation that can be a bit of a hindrance when giving up and heeding to Christ.

This devotional I read last night was meant for me. Even though I was tired, giving up the few moment to read this devotional encouraged me to press on. IT encouraged me to heed to him, to listen to him. I hope it encourages you too.

Decreasing for His Purpose

He must increase, but I must decrease —John 3:30

If you become a necessity to someone else’s life, you are out of God’s will. As a servant, your primary responsibility is to be a “friend of the bridegroom” (John 3:29). When you see a person who is close to grasping the claims of Jesus Christ, you know that your influence has been used in the right direction. And when you begin to see that person in the middle of a difficult and painful struggle, don’t try to prevent it, but pray that his difficulty will grow even ten times stronger, until no power on earth or in hell could hold him away from Jesus Christ. Over and over again, we try to be amateur providence's in someone’s life. We are indeed amateurs, coming in and actually preventing God’s will and saying, “This person should not have to experience this difficulty.” Instead of being friends of the Bridegroom, our sympathy gets in the way. One day that person will say to us, “You are a thief; you stole my desire to follow Jesus, and because of you I lost sight of Him.”

Beware of rejoicing with someone over the wrong thing, but always look to rejoice over the right thing. “. . . the friend of the bridegroom . . . rejoices greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice. Therefore this joy of mine is fulfilled. He must increase, but I must decrease” (John 3:29-30). This was spoken with joy, not with sadness-at last they were to see the Bridegroom! And John said this was his joy. It represents a stepping aside, an absolute removal of the servant, never to be thought of again.

Listen intently with your entire being until you hear the Bridegroom’s voice in the life of another person. And never give any thought to what devastation, difficulties, or sickness it will bring. Just rejoice with godly excitement that His voice has been heard. You may often have to watch Jesus Christ wreck a life before He saves it (see Matthew 10:34).

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Addy's Party

Addison's birthday party ended up being a wonderful time. We headed to Chuck E. Cheese and she enjoyed every minute with her cousins and family! The photos tell the story. Oh....and don't miss the awesome Barbie cake and Uncle David going down the slide! Later she enjoyed a celebration with mommy and daddy and her favorite new balloon pal Chuck E Cheese. Addy was so thankful for all the gifts she recieved too. We are so blessed :)

Monday, March 19, 2012


Who am I? What do I stand for? Whom am I supposed to serve?

Lately, I have been struggling with who I am as a person. If you know me; I am a yes person, a people pleaser, if you need me, I will be there. I am sometimes a people pleaser to a fault. Sometimes I don't say no when I should. I also have found myself struggling with becoming the person God wants me to be and not what my friends or others think I should be.

I noticed when I hang out with people I adjust who I am based on who I am with. This is not necessarily a bad thing because the people I hang out with are pretty great. However, I have learned that I can't just do what these people do because its good for them. It has to be good for me too. It has to be what God wants for me.

More than anything, I want to find my identity in Christ. I feel like sometimes I work so hard to please others that I am not pleasing God and not letting him be who I serve. I truly believe God gave me the gift of giving of my time to others but somewhere in the mix of things I have forgotten to give some of that time back to him.

This blog was inspired by a culmination of trying to figure out who I am in Christ and from a great devotional my dad sent me today....

What’s it all about?
It’s about the painting, not the frame;
It’s about the treasure, not the vessel;
It’s about His truth, not our opinions;
It’s about His glory, not our looks;
It’s about His love, not our niceness;
It’s about His purpose, not our plans;
It’s about His Kingdom, not our agenda;
It’s about His reign, not our rights;
It’s about His life, not our efforts;
It’s about Jesus!
--Roy Lessin

“But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. -2 Cor. 3:18.

After reading and meditating on this and God's word, I have come to the conclusion that its time to find my identity in Christ and to stop worrying about my life because my life is his. His plans are mine.

Who am I? I am HIS....
What do I stand for? I stand for grace, truth, love, forgiveness, kindheartedness...I stand for HIM
Whom do I serve? I serve my heavenly father FIRST and foremost...

When it comes down to it...this life is all about JESUS. I am ready to give myself to him and find my identity in him. I want to be a person the Lord is proud of. I want to serve him.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Happy 2nd Birthday Addison Rose!



It is so hard to believe that 2 years ago today we welcomed our sweet little girl into the world. I remember like it was yesterday. 23 hours of labor ending in a C-section---at that moment we knew you were going to be the strong willed child that you are. Life has changed so much and we are so honored to be your parents Addison Rose. I love your laugh...your ability to make my day glorious.

We love you so much Addison Rose! We are so thankful the Lord has blessed us with you. Happy Birthday my sweet girl! We can't wait to watch you grow into the little girl and woman that God has designed....LOVE YOU FOREVER!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012


Waiting and patience have never been my strongest quality. In my life I have always wanted to know now and get things done now. However, not all people work that way and God doesn't always answer now or when we want him to.

Lately I have found myself struggling with waiting and being very upset with God about how he is not answering my prayers or responding to me. I keep pleading and praying with God about a few select things and wonder why he doesn't hear. When he hasn't answered I have been frustrated and have found myself pulling away from Him and really feeling no hope.

I have felt guilty about feeling this way about God but I was reminded the other day by a blog I read an encouraging email from someone that is not in normal circle of friends that " I heard a really good message by a woman on our emotions and the thing that stood out to me most in the message, that I keep coming back to, is that God is honored in our struggle to respond rightly because it shows that we recognize our need and want to change. So the fact that you are even struggling towards responding well is a grace from him and evidence of his continued work in your life. I know that is something I need to hear so often!"

When I heard this all the guilt I felt toward being upset with God went away. I realized God understands my heart and he is waiting for me to respond and how I respond is key.

The next step for me isn't as easy. Waiting... Waiting for God's timing and for HIS will to be done. It is out of my control which is hard for a type A such as myself to give up. But while in Michigan on Monday I experienced what waiting on the Lord looks like. Ben's dad or as I call 2nd dad had his chemo treatment with this new drug that the doctor said would probably not work. They even told him a month ago that he would only have 6 months to live. Well, guess what, 5 months after being diagnosed with cancer and endless prayers and what seemed to be forever waiting...the cancer is beginning to go away and the results have been dramatic.

There are other areas in my life right now that I have been struggling with waiting and watching my 2nd dad walk out of the clinic on Monday after his treatment and seeing the faith he has had gave me hope.

A wonderful song came to mind by John Waller that sums up waiting on the Lord. I am encouraged today as I begin to wait on him.

I'm waiting
I'm waiting on You, Lord
And I am hopeful
I'm waiting on You, Lord
Though it is painful
But patiently, I will wait

I will move ahead, bold and confident
Takeing every step in obedience
While I'm waiting
I will serve You
While I'm waiting
I will worship
While I'm waiting
I will not faint
I'll be running the race
Even while I wait

I'm waiting
I'm waiting on You, Lord
And I am peaceful
I'm waiting on You, Lord
Though it's not easy
But faithfully, I will wait
Yes, I will wait
I will serve You while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting
I will serve You while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting
I will serve you while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting on You, Lord

Sunday, March 11, 2012

The Zoo with Grandma Dana

This past week we got to go with Grandma to the zoo. We had fun look at animals, eating lunch and watching the dolphin show. Then off to the Mall of America for some shoe shopping for a little girl that can't stop growing!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Cousins--A day in a life of 2 cute girls

Yesterday, Addy had the opportunity to play with her cousin Ellie for a few hours! Boy did they have a ball! We also got to spend time talking with Nana and Aunt Katie. In these pictures you will see Addy rubbing Ellie's back and Ellie trying to help Addy on the chair with her. These girls sure love each other. What a blessing to be so close in age and grow up together!

Thank heaven for little girls!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Love her like Jesus

It is so easy as a parent to get frustrated with your kids. Especially right now for me...Tantrums, teething, outbursts in Target because she doesn't get a toy...She is not even 2 yet. YIKES! I get so frustrated that I even yelled the other day...

But then I remember she is not mine. We are her temporary home. I am here to teach her first and foremost about Christ, to discipline, equip her and LOVE her! Its hard when things are stressful to remember the wonderful moments.

As I rocked Addy to sleep last night and she asked me to pray for her daddy my heart just melted. Even as she gets close to turning 2 (only a week away) I am reminded that we are already instilling in her what we do in our house and who we serve.

So as far as these tantrums; I am not a huge fan. But instead of yelling and getting frustrated I am going to try to learn to make them teaching moments and love her through them.

This morning as I thought about who I want to be as a parent. I thought about how wonderful my parents were in raising me and how wonderful Ben's parents are. Our parents have been instrumental in our walks with Christ. I hope that when Addy is my age that she will say she learned to love Jesus from her mommy and daddy like Ben and I did.

This morning this song by Casting Crowns came to mind:

Just love them like Jesus, carry them to Him
His yoke is easy, His burden is light
You don't need the answers to all of life's questions
Just know that He loves them and stay by their side
Love them like Jesus

Lord of all creation holds our lives in His hands
The God of all the nations holds our lives in His hands
The Rock of our salvation holds our lives in His hands
He cares for them just as He cares for you

So love them like Jesus, love them like Jesus
You don't need the answers to all of life's questions
Just know that He loves them and stay by their side
Love them like Jesus
Love them like Jesus

Right now, I don't need all the answers on how to parent, I am not perfect and I will make mistakes and I will have meltdowns. But I am going to do my hardest to Love her Like Jesus!