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Showing posts from February, 2015

Big Personality at Little Cost: Welcoming Baby Helm #2

The past few months, our financial goal has been to eliminate unnecessary expenses in order to continue paying down school loans on one income.  Prenatal photo shoots, obviously, are classified as an unnecessary expense.  Today, I put some pictures into a Shutterfly baby book that we will be able to print for next to nothing (thanks to a gift certificate for expecting parents). Looking through some of the gems our families and friends captured the past few months, I am grateful that Baby Helm #2 will not enter the world entirely undocumented.  This little one is in for an adventure, with a Dad and big brother whose personalities are big enough to be captured by even the simplest of cameras.

Wearing Privilege On My Sleeve

My daily choices remind me of my privilege.  Which of my 30 shirts (or 15 pairs of shoes) should I wear?  Should I buy the beef, or the cheaper chicken (or the even cheaper beans)?  What music should I turn on? Which book should I open?  Should I have dessert? Millions will never entertain these options, simply because they will never be afforded such luxuries.  For many people, the biggest question will be: how will I feed my family today? We live in a strange, artificial world here in middle class America.  A place where parenting styles are given more thought than poverty.  Where more money is spent on diet products and fitness plans than on world hunger.  Where battles over education models obscure the reality that many people worldwide will never even learn to read. What if paring down our options could improve life for others?  Why couldn't this be the case?  Most likely, because we don't want others' survival to hinge on our discomfort.  God, forgive us. Teach us

Teach My Song to Rise to You

I am not a crier.  So when tears dripped down my cheeks mid-way through a session of MegaBloks this morning, Josiah just looked at me thoughtfully.  He had been singing along, cheerfully, to this song: Hearing my son join the voices of these beautiful children, many of whom had suffered in ways I cannot even imagine, something in me broke. To me, missions had always meant Africa: declaring the goodness of God in lands of poverty, war, and disease.  But God may have something (or a somewhere) different in mind for us. The concept of "unreached people" had not even crossed my consciousness before I met Ethan.  Now, it defines nearly all of our future plans.  At this point, I do not know where God will teach our song to rise to Him.  My tears may have been over the loss of the dream of working with African orphans in a place like Uganda.  Or perhaps, over the granting of a dream I cannot yet even envision.  Wherever we go, I know we will need Him desperately.