8 Years

Eight years ago today Jesse and I were married. Today I looked through old pictures and remembered where we were and what we were doing each of the 8 years we’ve been married – and we have been a lot of places and done a lot of things! I am so thankful for all of the adventures we’ve had together. For example…

Our wedding day – 2006


Our vacation to Glacier National Park that was cut short when the water pump on the Jeep went out – sending us home a week early since we were out of money…
The time we drove west without a plan and ended up visiting 4 national parks in 2 days…
The first kid – 2011
The second kid – 2014

Not to mention moving at least 10 times, living in 2 different states, 4 different cities, and several different jobs. Whew! I get tired just thinking about all that we’ve done the last 8 years.

Today I’m re-posting a hymn I recorded last year for our anniversary – click on the link at the bottom of this post to listen. The title is “O Perfect Love.” Do not be fooled by the title. Jesse and I do not have perfect love. Case in point… For some reason I assumed today that he would not get me anything, so I was planning to buy some flowers for myself while I was out running errands. I didn’t have time to get them, though, and was surprised to find a beautiful bouquet of flowers waiting for me by the back door when I came home. Even worse, because I assumed he wouldn’t get anything for me, I didn’t get anything for him. Woops…

Thankfully, the perfect love the hymn is talking about Christ’s love. His love is the constant in our marriage through all of the exciting adventures, difficult transitions, and everyday screw-ups that we’ve been through. Here’s a hymn in honor of Christ’s perfect love and the amazing husband he has blessed me with.

Title: O Perfect Love
Text: Dorothy Gurney (1858-1932)
Tune: O PERFECT LOVE, Joseph Barnby (1838-1896)


Begone Unbelief

Text: John Newton, 1779
Tune: Rachel Henkle, 2010

If you’re wondering why you haven’t seen any posts from me since Lent, it’s mostly because we recently had our second kiddo, and while we are in love with our new little man, there is hardly a moment when I’m not holding, feeding, or changing him. It also doesn’t help that my family and I have been through nearly every major life change there is in the last few months… death of grandparents, birth of a child, changing jobs, saying goodbye to dear friends, buying a house, moving out, moving in… At the end of most days I have about enough energy to crawl into bed and try to sleep before it’s time to get up and feed the baby again. Tonight, somehow, both kids are asleep and I still have a little energy left to write a few words…

There’s a hymn I have been thinking about the past several weeks. One of the stanzas refers to a story in Mark 4 where Jesus and the disciples are in a boat. A big storm comes up, and the disciples freak out. Oddly enough, Jesus is sleeping through the whole thing and when the disciples frantically wake him, he gets up and calms the storm by simply saying “Peace, be still.” After this miracle, Jesus turns to the disciples and says “Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?”

The hymn writer says that when we know Jesus is in our boat, so to speak, we can smile at any storm that arises. But the disciples certainly were not smiling at the storm – in fact they were likely scared to death. And through the changes we’ve been through the past few months, I have not been smiling the whole time either.

I remember in the weeks and months after our daughter was born, sitting up in the middle of the night in complete despair, sure that I would never sleep again. This time, though, I can look at my three year old who (usually) sleeps all night and know that this second kiddo will eventually get there as well. And last week as we drove away from the home and the people we’ve lived with and loved the past three years, I can recall how God has guided me through difficult transitions in the past and be sure that He will faithfully see us through this as well.

Every time I feel the anxiety rising these days, I picture Jesus looking at me saying “Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?” And on my good days, I can look back at him and say “I believe. Help my unbelief.” (Mk 9:24)

So if you haven’t been a regular reader, you can click on the link below and listen to my little rendition of today’s hymn. As you listen, remember God’s faithfulness to you in the past and allow that to encourage you in whatever storms you’re facing right now.

Begone unbelief, my Savior is near
And for my relief He’ll surely appear
By prayer let me wrestle and He will perform
With Christ in the vessel I smile at the storm
Though dark be my way, since He is my guide
‘Tis mine to obey and His to provide
He wouldn’t have taught me to trust in His name
And thus far have brought me to put me to shame
His love in time past forbids me to think
He’ll leave me at last in trouble to sink
And for my relief He’ll surely appear
Begone unbelief, the Savior is near.
How bitter that cup, no heart can conceive
And he drank it up that sinners might live
His way was much rougher and darker than mine
Did Jesus thus suffer that I should repine?
Since all that I meet shall work for my good
The bitter is sweet, the medicine food
Though painful at present shall cease before long
And then, oh how pleasant the conquerors song