Goodbye Ordinary

I will recount the steadfast love of the LORD, the praises of the LORD, according to all that the LORD has granted us. Isaiah 63:7

The First Day of 2009 January 1, 2009

Filed under: Adoption,Faith,Family,Life — Lori @ 12:49 pm

My sweeties in their Christmas dresses

My sweeties in their Christmas dresses

This is a posting of an email I sent out to family and friends as a Christmas/New Year greeting.  I wanted to share it here as well.
Well, it is the first day of 2009!  Can you believe it?  I sure can’t.  Where did the last 12 months go?  Ours flew by after finally hearing in January that our paperwork in India had gone through the courts and that we were free to make our travel plans to India for February.  Our lives have been a blur ever since.  🙂
We have learned so much over the last year and one of the things I have learned is that – I have a LOT more to learn!  Sometimes it can be discouraging to realize that God has so much more work to do in my heart.  But, it is encouraging to know that He keeps at it and there is a little progress!  My verses for the year were:
Hebrews 13:20,21   Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.
I think one thing I found out is that I can’t just pray this verse for myself for one year, I will have to pray this for myself every day of all the years left in my life.  And, another thing I am reminded of is that I can’t just pray about it – I have to work on it.  I receive a blog from Ligonier Ministries (R.C. Sproul) every day and one day there was this quote:
Joel Beeke:
The way to godly living is surprisingly simple: we are to walk with God in His appointed way (Micah 6:8), diligently using the means of grace and the spiritual disciplines, and waiting upon the Holy Spirit for blessing. Note that godly living involves both discipline and grace. This emphasis upon duty and grace is fundamental to Reformed, experiential ideas about godly living. As John Flavel wrote, “The duty is ours, though the power be God’s. A natural man has no power, a gracious man hath some, though not sufficient; and that power he hath depends upon the assisting strength of Christ.”

I really appreciated this reminder that I am responsible for “walking with God in His appointed way”, but that I can only accomplish that if I am living in the sufficiency of God’s power to be able to carry that out.  How can I do that?  Well, it isn’t just sitting back with my feet up waiting for it to happen.  I actually think my verse for the year and this quote fit together well.  The Hebrews passage is a conclusion to a letter and I see it is a prayer.  The author of Hebrews cared about the people he was writing to.  He wanted them to understand correct doctrine about Jesus (he spent 13 chapters doing that!) and he wanted them to have a spiritually fulfilled life, being obedient to God and magnifying Christ in their lives.  If you are interested in the study of Hebrews, our pastor just recently finished a series on the book and it was amazing!  You can listen to it at:  The sermons are also available for download.

So, I see my responsibility as diligently seeking God’s word so that I know God as I should.  It is also being disciplined in prayer and communion with God.  If I am doing this, then I will more likely be in union with God’s desires for my life and He will be more able to fill me with His power to accomplish the plan that He has for my life. 

My focus for the coming year is not going to come as much of a surprise to you.  We have this amazing and wonderful and scary task of raising two little girls whose background and culture is very different from ours.  I have shared with you their eager desire to learn about God and Jesus.  I am realizing how much they watch me and how important the way I live my life, speak, take care of my family, respond to them, and even discipline them is going to soak right into their hearts and effect how they view the world and God.  Wow!  That is a big responsibility.  Why is it that it feels so much more daunting than it did when I had Kelsey and Grant?  Maybe because I know that I was able to start right at the beginning with them and with Kalindi and Kira I have lots of time to make up.

It has been neat that the girls’ English has improved so much because I am now able to explain more to them and we are able to communicate on a deeper level.  Discipline is especially hard when you can only use means that get the point across without the words to explain and educate.  We are now able to do more of that and I am so glad.  And this brings me to my desire for 2009.

Deuteronomy 6:5-7
You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.  And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart.  You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.
This is my goal for our family, and myself in particular, in this coming year. 
As a New Year’s resolution, I charge you to commit at least a half hour a day to reading God’s word and prayer.  I found a neat plan to read the Bible in a year which I plan to use.  You actually read the NT and Psalms twice and the OT once.  It is here:  There is a neat article (It is actually the preface and introduction to his book, For the Love of God) from D.A. Carson here  that talks about why and how we should read the Bible, but specifically the method of reading it that is spelled out in the first link I gave with the yearly reading schedule which was organized by Robert Murray M’Cheyne.
Thanks so much for stopping by! 

In front of the tree at church

In front of the tree at church


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