Tuesday, December 25, 2012

merry & bright

Merry Christmas! I've said this before, but 2012 went by extremely quickly. It's hard to believe we'll be ringing in 2013 in just a few days, and I can't wait to see what the new year holds. I feel beyond blessed to have stayed so busy touring in 2012 with my wonderful, talented husband and our sweet Lorelei. Although I am so feeling ready to welcome our little boy into the world and into our family, I am savoring each moment we have to focus all our love and attention on our precious girl. She is a joy and a light every day! 

This year we have had much to celebrate, and it's such a blessing to be able to spend the holidays with family and those we love. This year, we are in Puerto Rico with my parents and brother for a few more days, and then we are headed to the icy midwest to celebrate with Jordan's family. Trading the beach for snow drifts actually has me a little bit excited as we haven't seen much snow this year! (Someone may need to remind me I said that in a week when I'm complaining about being frozen.)

I hope that this Christmas is a blessed one for each of you, and that the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ will permeate your heart and mind as we reflect on the goodness of God to send his only Son as a helpless babe for our salvation. The power of that message continues to amaze me, and I am humbled to have such a reason to celebrate. To be free from sin and shame due to the tremendous work of Jesus on the cross is a seemingly impossible gift that my soul rejoices to receive!

This year, I have found this lyric from "O Come All Ye Faithful" to be a particularly beautiful description of the arrival of Jesus. I hope the entrance of Jesus into our world will strike you now as never before, and draw us near to the throne of grace as we enter 2013.

Yea, Lord, we greet Thee, born this happy morning
Jesus to Thee be all glory giv'n
Word of the Father, now in flesh appearing
O Come let us adore Him
O Come let us adore Him
O Come let us adore Him
Christ the Lord

Saturday, December 15, 2012

God and grief

I had a hard time sleeping last night in the wake of the events at Sandy Hook Elementary yesterday. Lying in my bed, with my sweet little girl sleeping soundly in her room and an acrobatic little boy causing a ruckus in my ever-growing belly, I couldn't help but feel a small amount of the grief that the parents, family, and friends of the victims must be feeling. While I truly can't fathom what they are going through, I know that in this life, my greatest treasure is the ones I love.

I tend to battle anxiety and a lack of peace, so as I prayed for the families and thanked God for my own sweet little ones, I also had to ask God for a reminder of His heavenly perspective. It's very easy for me to give in to feelings of anxiety and fear, and yet, I know that dwelling there is opposed to the abundant life God promises us in Jesus Christ in John 10:10. I believe that His heart is also broken for these events. For the gaping hole in those families their precious babies used to fill. For the many, many loved ones who lost child and adult yesterday. For the loss people around the world are feeling every day as they endure crisis and tragedy.

We are not overlooked in our need. We are not abandoned to the evil that surrounds us. We are, however, temporarily inhabiting a world in desperate need of the Jesus of the gospel. In my own heart, I felt God gently reminding me that just as He loves and cares for me, He loves and cares for others. My job is not to protect my children from every evil and harm (although I would die doing my very best) or to control every aspect of their life and formation. My job is to love and serve a perfect, all-knowing, gracious God to the very best of my ability each and every day. I am here for the glory of God and to spread the name of Jesus Christ, not to build myself a tidy kingdom here on earth.

As the goodness of the gospel of Jesus' salvation continues to permeate my heart, I am asking that God would continue to give me perspective that outweighs my own limited sight. Too often I judge and condemn others without viewing them as beloved children God has already called, or desires to call His own. This world will bring trouble, but it is not our home. I don't have answers, and I do not wish to trivialize in any way the suffering endured here and now. I can only look to Jesus to fill the void I feel when I am overcome by the weight of such evil. Now, the words of 2 Corinthians 4:16-17 are comforting to me; I hope that you also find comfort in the message of the gospel of Jesus.
16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

skateboards for all

Possibly the last thing I thought I'd find time to post about here is skateboards, but something amazing is going down in Nashville, y'all, and skateboards are at the heart of it. Check out this video for an introduction to Salemtown Board Co. and see what the fuss is all about!

I may not know much about skateboarding itself, but it doesn't take a discriminating eye to see the beauty in these hand-crafted boards. From the mission to the product itself, great things are happening through Salemtown Board Co. I'd highly encourage you to take a moment to check out this company, founded by some top-quality men I'm proud to live and serve alongside here in Nashville. You can find them elsewhere on the web below: