Family Visit

Center of attention 032909 LR While we were dress shopping yesterday we took the opportunity to swing by Jesse & Heidi's place to pay a visit. Josh came over, Heidi whipped up some loaded nachos and we had a regular family reunion. It was great to see them and our little neice, Sophia, who continues to grow like a weed. She's changed a lot since we saw her at Christmas.

You can tell by the picture who is the center of attention around the household. It was great to visit for a few hours and catch up. We brought Jesse and Heidi some of their favorite Walkers shortbread cookies from England (No, we didn't buy them at Target – we got them in London, thank you).

Chapter-a-Day Psalm 116

Wedding dress shopping 02 032909 LR What can I give back to God for the blessings he's poured out on me? I'll lift high the cup of salvation—a toast to God! I'll pray in the name of God; I'll complete what I promised God I'd do, and I'll do it together with his people. Psalm 116:12-14 (MSG)

I took my daughter shopping for a wedding dress yesterday. She looked so beautiful and grown up. It felt strange. But, it was a good kind of strange. Where has the time gone? How did I wake up and find myself so far down the road along life's journey? My baby is getting married. She's a loveable, valuable, capable young woman.

I look back at where I've been. I look around me. This stretch of life's road looks different than I had expected. Don't get me wrong. It's a good place. I've been so blessed. God has been so good through all of the troubles, sorrow, and anguish along the way. "What can I give back to God for the blessings he's poured out on me?"

"I'll complete what I promised God I'll do…"

That includes walking my daughter down the aisle.

Chapter-a-Day Psalm 116

Wedding dress shopping 02 032909 LR What can I give back to God for the blessings he's poured out on me? I'll lift high the cup of salvation—a toast to God! I'll pray in the name of God; I'll complete what I promised God I'd do, and I'll do it together with his people. Psalm 116:12-14 (MSG)

I took my daughter shopping for a wedding dress yesterday. She looked so beautiful and grown up. It felt strange. But, it was a good kind of strange. Where has the time gone? How did I wake up and find myself so far down the road along life's journey? My baby is getting married. She's a loveable, valuable, capable young woman.

I look back at where I've been. I look around me. This stretch of life's road looks different than I had expected. Don't get me wrong. It's a good place. I've been so blessed. God has been so good through all of the troubles, sorrow, and anguish along the way. "What can I give back to God for the blessings he's poured out on me?"

"I'll complete what I promised God I'll do…"

That includes walking my daughter down the aisle.

Tulip Time Production Starts

Dominieswife2006_lr When Wendy and I got back from London this week we started production on Union Street Players Tulip Time play, Letters from Pella. Our community theatre does a one act play for the tourists every other year at Tulip Time. Letters from Pella tells an interesting story about Pella's first immigrants. It uses actual letters between the first residents and their native Holland to reveal some of the conflict, hardship and division the fledgling community faced as they forged a new life for themselves on the Iowa prairie.

This is the fourth Tulip Time production for Wendy and me. We're reprising our roles as Dominie (Dutch for "pastor") H.P. Scholte and his young wife, Mareah. We played the Dominie and Mareah in USP's 2006 production of The Dominie's Wife.

Performances are 4:30 in the afternoon each day of Pella's annual Tulip Time festival. If anyone is coming down for Tulip Time, I hope you'll sneak over to the Community Center and see the show!

Tulip Time Production Starts

Dominieswife2006_lr When Wendy and I got back from London this week we started production on Union Street Players Tulip Time play, Letters from Pella. Our community theatre does a one act play for the tourists every other year at Tulip Time. Letters from Pella tells an interesting story about Pella's first immigrants. It uses actual letters between the first residents and their native Holland to reveal some of the conflict, hardship and division the fledgling community faced as they forged a new life for themselves on the Iowa prairie.

This is the fourth Tulip Time production for Wendy and me. We're reprising our roles as Dominie (Dutch for "pastor") H.P. Scholte and his young wife, Mareah. We played the Dominie and Mareah in USP's 2006 production of The Dominie's Wife.

Performances are 4:30 in the afternoon each day of Pella's annual Tulip Time festival. If anyone is coming down for Tulip Time, I hope you'll sneak over to the Community Center and see the show!

Chapter-a-Day: Psalm 115

Negative...again. He gives childless couples a family, gives them joy as the parents of children. Hallelujah!  Psalm 115:9 (MSG)

For two years, Wendy and I have been praying for a child. For two very long years we've been deperately trying to get pregnant. I'll spare you all the details of what a long journey it's been, but it has been a very long, painful, expensive journey. I'm tired of praying. I'm emotionally exhausted from tears and faith unrewarded. I'm tired of the monthly roller coaster of hope and disappointment. I'm tired of sweeping up the pieces of my wife's broken heart every four weeks and unsuccessfully trying to glue them back together.

For the past three days the psalms have proclaimed promises of children to the childless.

God, I'm tired of trusting. I'm scared of hoping anymore.

Creative Commons photo courtesy of Flickr and slayer23

Back to Reality

Yesterday was the dreaded day of return to reality. Wendy and I realized that most of our vacations are spent with at least some attention to voice mail and email so that, when we return, the pile is not so huge. Going to England seemed a good time to completely unplug, however. And, it was a great time to forget about everyday life for a while and just "be" in London. It was nice to just experience it and forget about everything else.

Yesterday, we realized why we don't always unplug completely when we take time off. The stack of "to-dos," emails, voicemails, and snail mails appeared as mountains before us. Plus, we had a week's worth of dirty laundry and "stuff" to unpack from London…all the while getting over jet lag.

Yesterday was not a fun day.

Today will be better.

Won't it?