For Such a Time as This…

I can remember those times in my life when God has drawn me closer to Him and held me by His side. Some of those times are times that I wish not to remember fully…the death of a child, the crumbling of a marriage, and the feeling of devastation/loss of a friendship in turmoil. Looking back, I do however wish to remember the redemption side of each of those stories, the perfect plan that God carried out to heal my heart (and the hearts of others) and bring me closer to Him. But, other times…I wish to treasure and never forget the intensity of the lessons that God was/is teaching me. For such a time as this.

Mountains of Gressier

God is showing me so much about who I am and what His purpose is for me. Our family has recently moved to a different place in Haiti. Change is good, sometimes hard, but with God’s help, it is a beautiful adventure. I don’t know if I fully understand what my role in this new community looks like quite yet. Of course, I always strive to be a Christ follower first, help mate to my husband, and an intentional mother to my kids. These are, and always will be, my first priorities, and honestly, they take much of my day. Little people need to be educated, fed, watered, played with, and encouraged daily no matter where you live (and on most days, this is such a joy to be doing).  And keeping up with the house, etc….well, it all takes time. These things are all things that are impacting eternity, although sometimes I allow satan to attack and I allow myself to think I am not doing anything worthwhile. We feel strongly about discipling our sweet kiddos and growing them into young men and women that will make an impact for Christ in this world.

chris and tracy

But outreach…what does that look like in this new community called Gressier? We don’t live in a village anymore…people are not just “there” as you pass by to talk to.  There are a lot more gates…and people tend to stay behind them. So, what is my role? God has shown me in the past week that my role is the same….to love my neighbor as myself and to be the hands and feet of Jesus to this community. The avenue to get there might be different though…a little longer, rockier, and even steep.  My love for loving others has not changed, but I am needing to reach beyond my comfort zone to apply it.  I feel like God has been telling me to get up and get outside, go for walks, knock on gates, start conversations, hold babies, encourage young moms. And so, that is what I have done over the past few days.
Ezekyel

And you know what? I can feel it…I can feel the uncertainty that was residing in my heart begin to fade. I can feel God’s purpose begin to fill me up again. And I can see that God brought our family here…for such a time as this. My husband has great God given talents that are going to blow the socks off of this community. He is in his niche again, and my heart is so happy for him…for such a time as this. And me? Well…I think God has given me a heart to love others, and to spread His love specifically to the women and children in this community. Bible study? Weekly lunch? Parenting classes? I might not know the details yet, but I know He has brought me here…for such a time as this.  God’s story is always better than mine. And His plan for our lives is no joke. He doesn’t need me to make the world go round, but I can sure bring Him glory while I’m going ‘round the world….for such a time as this.

IMG_4455

Advertisements

Pine Cove… The Place We Call Heaven on Earth

One week per year. The week we let all else fade away. It is our favorite week of the year. Our family new year. Our family huddle. A week of rest and spiritual renewal. A week that we vowed would always be priority for our family. It is Pine Cove..our heaven on earth.

We live in Haiti now. It is not always easy to make Week 2 at the Woods the time that we travel back to the states. But it has honestly become more of a priority than ever before. The gift of incredible leaders pouring God’s truth into our lives and hearts is one of the greatest gifts to our marriage and family. And the crazy, amazing counselors that rock our world….I really don’t know where or how Pine Cove can possibly find these amazing college students that have impacted our family year after year. But we are forever grateful for this gift…the gift of Family Camp.

From the moment we arrive at the gates of Pine Cove Woods in early June, our hearts breathe in a sense of peace coupled with anticipation. The anticipation comes from past years of incredible experiences and the excitement of what is to come this year. The sense of peace is rooted in friendships that run deep and a sense of being back home where everything is right. We often talk about Week 2 at the Woods as if it is the greatest family reunion for our family.

We ask our kids where their favorite place in the world is and without hesitation, they holler “PINE COVE”!!! The experiences that our children have been blessed with are second to none. DisneyWorld?? No way…we want PINE COVE!! Every single awesome, fun activity is used as an avenue to spread the gospel of Christ. Zip lines, water skiing, skeet shooting, horseback riding, CLUB, the BLOB, and Friday night carnival are just a few of the activities that our kids are swept away daily to enjoy. During their time with friends and counselors, my husband and I sit and listen to some of the world’s greatest speakers. And, one of our very favorite times that is carved into the schedule are the Tuesday and Thursday date nights (living in Haiti, there are no date nights so this is very special to us).

Words cannot describe the fun times and meaningful memories that Pine Cove holds for our family. Some of our deepest friendships have developed during our week at the Woods every year over the past eight years. Some of the times where we feel closest to God are right there at our favorite place on earth. God’s love, His people’s servant hearts, our family, and the beauty of His creation all meet up in one place…the place and time that we look forward to most every year….Pine Cove. Our heaven on earth.

In honor of our love for Pine Cove and Super Bowl Sunday, Pine Cove is hosting Super Goal Monday…what does that mean? Well, it means we have coupons available for discounts at Pine Cove Camp in the City, Pine Cove Overnight Youth Camp, and Pine Cove Family Camp. You will never ever be sorry that you invested this time and money into your family. So, Monday, February 3rd ONLY, you can register for camp and receive the following discounts when you use the coupon code SGMBLOG:

Camp in the City: $15 off

Overnight Youth Camp: $25 off

Family Camp: $100 off

So, go right now and do NOT miss this opportunity to save money and have the greatest time of your life!! Go online to http://www.pinecove.com or call 877-474-6326 and register for the most amazing experience ever!!!

(NOTE: I could post millions of pictures proving that Pine Cove is the very best place on earth….however, the internet in Haiti makes it very difficult to upload all of our fun photos! So, go to Pine Cove and take your own awesome pics because it will be so worth it!) 🙂