Hanging lights, singing carols, going to neighbors’ houses with armfuls of food, feeling that early morning chill…
What? It’s July? Maybe I better explain. Last week our power was out for almost a week. The early morning chill was the cold showers I had from the water heater booster not working, and the armfuls of food was my food that I was bringing over to someone’s house with a working fridge. After a couple of days, some of the houses on campus got power back, but not ours. So, the solution? String a power cord from their house, to our neighbors’ house, to our house, to power one power strip. (Yes, really!) We were then able to plug in our fridge, and I strung some Christmas lights so that we could see at night, as by that time we were getting low on candles and batteries. Ty and Wyck were very excited to see Christmas lights, and I of course had to start singing carols :).
While we’re on the subject of Christmas, do you know what my favorite part about Christmas is? The anticipation of it. I love the baking cookies, decorating, buying gifts, and preparing for something wonderful to happen.
I’ve never been very good at living in the moment. That’s something I’ve been thinking a lot about lately. It is so easy for me to be discontent with where I am at, and either think about how much better the past was, or about how much better the future will be when circumstances change. But when I try to just enjoy the present, I’m not very good at that either. “Am I enjoying this enough? Should I capture this moment with a picture or just be? Why am I not enjoying this? How do I enjoy this? Is every moment really worth being fully in? Should I be doing this with this moment or something else?” I do want to grow in treasuring what’s right in front of me, but I don’t think that’s fully the answer either. So if I shouldn’t live in the past, the present, or the future, then where should I live? I want to live with the eternal future in focus, not my immediate future, but eternity. When the regrets of the past, the drudgery of the present, or the fears about the future come pressing down on top of me, I want to focus on eternity. This shifts my focus from, “Am I enjoying my kids enough before they grow up?” to “Am I teaching my kids about Jesus?” From, “Am I happy in this moment?” to “Am I using this moment to serve the Lord and help someone have a better eternity?” What makes the preparation for Christmas joyful is the assurance that Christmas day will come. What makes my today joyful is the assurance that Jesus Christ will come. So I better focus on being ready.
What do our todays look like lately? Matt is still working doing construction/maintenance at the nearby NTM campus, and coordinating the airport runs for our campus. Next month he will start teaching junior high boys’ Bible at the NTM school. Karissa started kindergarten with Ty last week, which has been keeping her very busy. Yes, I know it’s July– we are doing a year-round schedule to give us more flexibility when we need to travel. At the end of this month, new missionary families will be arriving for their training, so we will go to visit them this fall to see if any of them could be potential partners for us.
We are so thankful that God is in control of our pasts, presents, and futures.
Till all know,
Matt, Karissa, Ty, and Wyck
The view from our neighbor’s house of the power lines that were strung up.
Our Christmas-y home.
– A PNG citizen that Matt works with has recently gone through something extremely tough. Pray that Matt can be an encouragement and blessing to him.
– That Matt can find time to prepare for his Bible class amidst everything else he’s doing
– For Karissa and Ty as doing a longer homeschool schedule has been a tough change
– That God will provide another family for us to partner with, possibly from this incoming group
– There were 3 people with Moody Aviation who died in an airplane accident. Some good friends of ours are related to one of them. Pray for comfort for the families, and that all of their overseas families will be able to come back to the U.S. to be with family.
– We finished our team strategy statement (for now)
– That we have power back
– He is teaching us a lot lately
– We have a new nephew! Matt’s sister had a baby this week.
– Lots of national believers who live right near us are teaching God’s Word to others. It is so cool to see disciples making disciples right around us.