Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Heading Out

We head out to Seattle tomorrow afternoon to hunt for a house. And I've decided to make use of my blog to request prayer......

First - Kaitlyn has Croup. I'm thankful at least she's not developed an ear infection, as had been my concern, for her sake on the flight. But please pray that her condition does not worsen and that she will be a good traveler and house-hunter despite not feeling her best. Pray also that her weakened immune system would not allow her to pick up any other sickness on the flight.

Second - Snow is in the forecast 3 out of the 6 days we'll be in Seattle, one of which is tomorrow our day of travel. I really don't know what that means there - if it will accumulate or just flurry a little. So, please pray that whatever the case, it will not hinder our travel or our ability to look for a house.

And very importantly - we need to find a house. This is our one shot to do so!

I won't take the time to outline our other requests. Most of you will receive those through our newsletter. If you don't already receive it though you can sign up for it on the left side of this blog if you want. Thanks so much!!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

What do we treaure?

There is a song that has captured my attention over the last few weeks. It's a Stephen Curtis Chapman song that I never really even noticed before, but I happened to pull an old CD out and there it was. Here are the lyrics to "The Treasure of Jesus":

What can I do? How can I live to show my world the treasure of Jesus?
What will it take? What could I give so they can know the treasure He is?

If I can sing, let my songs be full of His glory.
If I can speak, let all my words be full of His grace.
And if I should live or die may I be found pursuing this prize,
the One that alone satisfies......
the treasure of Jesus.

I just can't get this song out of my mind. It's SO convicting, yet inspiring. It's made me think about how I live and how I see other Christians living. Do we live in such a way that it is evident that Jesus is THE most valuable thing to us? I think many times it appears that other things are worth more to us.... time, money, security, comfort, the approval of others, our reputations, our pride, possessions, our ministries, our dreams, our opinions, the way we look, our health, relationships with others, having our way, our very lives.

The truth is absolutely nothing can compare to the immense treasure that Christ is and the complete satisfaction He gives. And He is so gracious to give us the gifts of time, money, our dreams, friendships, etc. But these things, while they may satisfy for a time, eventually leave us empty apart from Christ.

So the questions I've been asking myself......When we take an honest evaluation of what we really value above all else, is it Jesus? The world will know by the way we live. And if it's not Christ, then why would they want Him? Are we seeking to spread our names or the name of Christ? There are so many who don't know what a treasure Christ is. But if I am seeking after the same things they are or just trying to make my name great, then how are they going to find the only true Treasure?

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Fun at the Braswells

We've had the joy of having our youth over for the past 3 nights for our January Bible Study. It was a blast! And a much-needed break for me from prepping the house to sell and packing! Although I've had enough chips and cookies to last me a few months!

Here are some of our awesome kids!

This is Hannah showing some of the kids her photo album with her baby pictures in it, narrating page by page. I happened to walk in as she was saying, "When I was little I was naked a lot."

Smash Brothers was a nightly activity.

Some of our faithful youth volunteers and friends!

Some more of the kids....

Hannah grabbed her Bible and sat down with her "big kid friends" for Bible Q & A. She lasted all of about 10 minutes.

Gotcha Moses!

Kaitlyn had fun being passed around. She loves all that attention!

Here's our little walker showing off....

...and our big girl being silly with her story-time buddy.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Recent News

I'm realizing my posts are going to be fewer and farther between the closer we get to moving. So here are a few bits of news.......

..... We have been working HARD to get our house ready to put on the market. We should have had it up the first week of Jan, according to our realtor. Well, that was just too high of an expectation with all we've had to do, so we're shooting for this coming Tue. You'd think we'd be able to work more quickly with an extra little helper. ;) Hannah loves to get out her tools and "work" alongside Daddy or get a damp cloth and wipe down anything within reach. I was in another room the other day when she came in and informed me that she had cleaned the windows (on our french doors), which she had. If her desire to help matched her ability to do so, I'm sure we would already have a sign in our yard!

..... Kaitlyn took NINE consecutive steps tonight! After taking her first steps Monday she went for a few days without taking any. Then a few here and there.... and tonight off she went. We really aren't trying to encourage this - as if she needs any more help getting into everything! And it just makes it feel like she's already growing out of the baby stage - it's so early!

..... Dale added a great addition to the blog for me - a sign-up box for our Connect Church online newsletter. If you aren't already receiving it and would like to, just enter your e-mail and click "Join" and it's done. Receiving our newsletter is the best way to get all the details about what is happening in our journey to Seattle and how you can be praying. And we need all of that we can get!

Monday, January 14, 2008


Kaitlyn is 10 months old today and took her first steps! All 4 of us were hanging out in the living room this evening when Kaitlyn took 2 tiny steps towards big sis. I immediately jumped up to grab the video camera and was able to catch a few more. It was exciting that we were all there for the big moment! She's quite wobbly of course, but clearly on her way to more independence. My it happens fast!

Below are a few recent pictures that make me smile!

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

2007 Reflections

2007 was a year marked by major change for us. It began with a lot of questions about our future. Dale and I felt that change was coming in regards to ministry and were wondering if God was leading us to start a new church. It was an idea. But were we even cut out to do something like that? Seattle was a thought, but nothing more. Now we're about to put our house in Nashville on the market and are planning to purchase a home in Seattle at the end of the month. We still wonder if we're really cut out to do this, but now we have more than a year's worth of God's direction and confirmation...so on we go.

About the same time Connect Church was being born in our hearts and minds, Kaitlyn entered our world. March 14 at 9:00 p.m. on the dot. (Does that mean she'll always be punctual?) Becoming the parents of two proved to be quite an adjustment! But we wouldn't change it for anything. Kaitlyn is so much fun. She is a laid-back, good-natured, sweet little girl who has a very big giggle box. She's fairly quiet with occasional bursts of loud babbling or screaming, most of which are currently happening any time after 9 p.m. We're hoping her night owl phase will end soon! Her favorite words right now are ma ma :), ba ba, la la and something that sounds like yum, yum. She absolutely loves Hannah and wants to be wherever she is and doing whatever she is doing. For this reason we think walking will happen any day now. She already will stand freely for several seconds at a time and is cruising around easily. Her first tooth appeared just before Christmas. And she's now a member of the Braswell Christmas road trip club. We put 2200 miles on our vehicle in a 10 day period and she did quite well. Although now we can't get her in her car seat without violent protests!

OK, I realize I've gone from reflecting on the past year to reflecting on Kaitlyn....

So, as I think about '07 I am thankful. It has been intense. But I'm thankful because we've been able to experience God more intensely. Through all of our searching and changes in our family He has proven once again that He is with us... He is good. He is a faithful provider. He is an encourager. He is the giver of all good gifts. He is peace. He is powerful. He is a friend. He is our strength. He is a God who clearly speaks to us and will lovingly go to great lengths to make sure we hear Him. He gently leads us down the right path and covers us with grace when we often and continually miss the mark. He understands. He works out every circumstance for our good. He comforts, sustains and energizes.... and so much more.

Because of the intensity of His presence in 2007 I know He'll be with us in amazing ways through all that 2008 will bring.