Tuesday, October 13, 2015

The Four Babies

These are the four firstborn children of some of our dear friends (and John and Megan).  They were all born in the spring of 2012.  I just counted and there are now eleven children collectively in these four families!

Here are the older pictures of them, in the same order.  They just keep getting cuter!

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

August-September Newsletter

October 3, 2015 -- Pedersen Family Newsletter 

From Laura, 16 … Recently we were able to attend a conference near Fort Worth.  It was entitled “The Distinctives of Baptist Covenant Theology”.  I am glad to have learned so much regarding these important truths.  Now I understand so much better what is meant, for example, by the old and new covenants and especially how instrumental is a proper view of them.  What mercy God has extended in both covenants, for, in the old covenant, His people looked forward to the work of Christ on the cross, and, in the covenant of grace, His people look back on the redemption purchased for us.  Glory!

From Becca, 19 … I graduated at the beginning of August, so I have been trying to figure out how to prioritize and manage my time now that I’m not in school.  I like being able to say, “Yes!” to so many things, instead of, “No, I have to do school.”  These are some of the activities I’ve been doing since I graduated: working on a few school things that I never finished, taking on more household chores, journaling, writing letters, reading books, doing yard work, helping with adorable nephews/nieces, practicing piano, dancing and singing in the new building, going to the beach, going on dates with sisters and friends, having a birthday, going to shows (a Shakespeare play, a symphony, a couple of movies, and another play), going to a conference about theology, learning how to swim, and attending a class about philosophy.

From Seth, 22 … During the last two months, I graduated from college and went on a trip to Africa.  It's pretty nice having finished the undergrad chapter of my life, and I'm looking forward to going to grad school in the spring and getting a job in one of the labs there (right now I’m still working as an intern for an engineering company).  My trip to Africa was amazing.  I met so many new friends, experienced different cultures, and was really encouraged and inspired by the Zambian Reformed Conference I attended in Lusaka, Zambia.

 From Anna, 25 … This semester, I am auditing a class at a local seminary on the history of philosophy and Christian thought.  We have spent most of our time so far discussing the ancient Greek philosophers, including Plato and Aristotle.  It has been fascinating to learn more about their teachings and beliefs, and to evaluate how they compare with biblical Christian thought.  The most striking insight for me has been seeing how the philosophies that attempt to begin from human reason alone, apart from God and his revelation, ultimately end in meaninglessness and irrationality.  I have also been struck by the contrast between the personal God of the Scriptures and the impersonal forces that other philosophies propose as the ultimate explanation for all things.

From John, Megan, James (3), Ezra (1), and Joy (newborn) …  In August we welcomed our sweet little girl, Joy Constancy, to the world!  Joy was born at 6:55 p.m. and weighed 5 lb., 11 oz., and was 18 3/4" long.  She was 5 days early!  Labor was just shy of 6 hours and went well with no complications.  She is now almost 8 weeks old and is growing fast, now weighing 9 lb., 4 oz.  The boys adore her and are both learning to be gentle.  Every now and then James exclaims, "Look!  She's moving!"  Or "Look!  She's breathing!"  She is a very happy baby!

From Ray, Katie, Peter (5), Samuel (4),  Andrew (3), Grace (1), and baby … We've had quite a bit of excitement in the last month or two.  We sold our minivan and bought a large SUV for the family.  The van was getting pretty old and worn out, and we're getting close to outgrowing it, since we have baby #5 coming next April.  Yay!

We went camping a few weeks ago at a place not far from Houston that had lots of fun activities, including a water park.  We almost had the place to ourselves, and it was great fun.

Peter had minor out-patient surgery recently.  He was very brave, and very cute, asking questions during pre-op, and overall just enjoying being the center of attention, I think.  One nurse asked about kindergarten, and if he liked his teacher.  I was glad he said yes!

From Judith … We have recently been involved with a family that has gone through a crisis.  The mother contracted a serious illness in the hospital just after childbirth (baby #7).  The baby was healthy and sent home while the mother languished in the hospital for weeks with this life-threatening infection.  Thankfully the mother is home now and recovering.

I marveled at the small army of helpers that has been needed to fill in for this one missing-in-action mama.  It was made up mostly of church friends and family members.  One woman coordinated meals while another coordinated having an adult woman helper in the home each day while the mother was in the hospital and during her ensuing convalescence at home.  Dozens of people have contributed in countless ways through making/delivering meals, caring for the home/children, and praying for the family.  It has been a joy to see the body of Christ at work in this way.  When I think of time like money, II Cor. 8:14 comes to mind: “... your abundance at the present time should supply their need ... ”  The Lord brings needs into our lives so that both those who give and those who receive are blessed.

From Gerald … Even though we still have a list of items to be completed in our new family room, it has been rewarding to begin putting it to use.  In addition to family gatherings, we have hosted Becca’s graduation party, a hymn sing, folk dancing, and a bi-weekly fellowship group.  We are grateful to have a space in which to gather in these ways.  It has also been fun to watch movies on a big screen.

With love from the Pedersen clan