Happy New Year!!
Last January 1st, if you asked me where I would be today, I would have answered that it could be anywhere in the US, but I would have never thought we would still be here in KY. I am not complaining because we are exactly where God wants us to be, but we both figured I would have found a job by now and we would have moved to wherever the job was.
Last year started off pretty rough. Emily was struggling through her feedings and we were trying to get her the help that she needed, but were running into many snags. It wasn't until half way through January that we had some relief for Emily and Dawn and I. Since last January things have been on the mend. We figured out how to get Emily to eat without pain (the solution was a feeding pump that gives her a continual feed through the night and we can feed her less during the day). We have developed a routine where Emily gets the sleep she needs, the food she needs and sometimes, the exercise she needs. She is growing like a weed, at the rate of an inch a month! She is in the 90th percentile for her height! And she is a happy and content child most of the time. Although she lets you know when she is not happy!
I would love to tell you of all the wonderful things that we accomplished and the great places we visited last year, but if you read our blog, you've already heard about them all. So I am going to focus on the year to come.
I must first preface this by telling you I believe in a Sovereign God! I can make all the plans in the world, but He is in control of what is really going to happen. At any moment tragedy could strike and change everything or we could be blessed more than we ever imagined and that could change everything. Only time will tell...one day at a time.
The first thing on my list of accomplishments for this year is to regain my health. When I was in Seminary, I was going to the gym five day a week and walking everywhere I went. These days, it is a good day if I get to get out of the house. I have gained 25 pounds in a year and a half and my attitude reflects it. In March, I will be celebrating my 40th birthday (God-willing) and it is my goal to lose the 25 pounds that I have gained. It is not the pounds that bother me, it is the fat. I will be working out on a regular basis, so I may not get to the desired weight, but I expect to lose the fat.
Let me just say that I have a plan to accomplish this goal and I will fill you in on it at a later date.
My second goal is to continue my efforts in unifying the men in my church. For the past six months I have been in charge of the Men's Ministry at Bullitt Lick Baptist Church (BLBC). I tried to organize a three week study with several different meeting times and different teachers to accommodate as many men as possible. The first week only three men attended one of the meetings and the rest were canceled. I was disappointed to say the least. BUT God had plans. The three men grew to four, then six and eventually to 12 men meeting every Monday! They decided after the three weeks were up to continue meeting and it just kept growing. We stopped for the month of December and are starting up again next Monday. It looks like we will be starting with about 20 men! I already have 3 teachers lined up, so God is bringing it together nicely. It didn't work the way I wanted it to work, but God knew what He was doing!
The Men's Ministry is also putting on a Men's Breakfast on a bi-monthly basis and we will have different men in the church giving their testimony of how they came to know the Lord and how God worked to bring them to BLBC. This promises to be a great year for BLBC!
The third thing that I would like to accomplish is a trip to Thailand. I am cheating here because everything is already planned and I am leaving on January 29th. Me, along with about 20 other people, are going to a hotel where there is a conference for Missionaries. We will working in the day care facility for the children from birth to teens. I am leading the Youth Team. We are meeting a church from Tennessee there. They will be working the beginning of the conference and we will be working the end of the conference. We will overlap a day or two so they can show us what to do. I have been in contact with a Seminary friend who is working in Asia and will be at the conference. One of the items she requested I bring her was some Velveeta Cheese. It's funny the things you miss when you are away from home!
This promises to be a great trip! Please keep us (the BLBC team) and Dawn (who will be home alone taking care of Emily) in your prayers during this time.
The forth thing that I would like to accomplish is finding a new job. This is really out of my hands and the only thing that I can do is get my resume in front of as many people as possible and leave the results to God...so that is what I intend to do.
Other accomplishments would be to continue to grow in my relationship with the Lord by maintaining a daily quiet time. Every day (for the most part) I spend an hour praying and reading the bible and journaling either what I learned or what I am going through. My desire is to continue this and get to know Jesus a little better.
I would also like to continue my relationship with my daughter. I spend a lot of time with her now and know that if I get a job things are going to change. My desire is that I would make time to be with her and make sure she never forgets who I am.
Growing in my relationship with Dawn is something that has been on my heart a lot lately. We spend 24/7 together (she works from home and I am a stay-at-home dad) and we are pretty close, but there are times when we need to get away and just enjoy each other. We have not had a "vacation" since Emily was born. Because of her needs, it makes it a little tough. This year we will find people who can help us out and I will make the time that Dawn and I need to grow in our relationship.
Well, now that I have given you a peek at the next year in my life, feel free to fill me in on what your plans are. I challenge you all to leave me a comment with one thing that you would like to do in 2009!
I also promise that the next time I post I will include more information and pictures of Emily. I know that is what you come for anyway.