Monday, October 31, 2011

A November to Remember

On our way to Baldoyle to meet the Karnes and some other friends, I leaned over and asked Juli, "Does it feel strange to have a child who's about to embark on her first trick-or-treating adventure?"  "Yeah, it does", she replied.  Last year's Halloween was remarkable as it was our first in Ireland.  Two years ago was interesting as Ashlyn was only 11 days old and we were still getting used to being first time parents.  And of course, we won't soon forget this one.  As far as the door to door action was concerned, Ashlyn was very polite and made sure to say thank you and bye bye when leaving each house. 

But Halloween aside, what's even more remarkable to me is that it's already November (in a 2 hours anyway).  This year has absolutely flown by and it will be 2012 before we know it.  But along the way, this should be an another November to remember.  We're starting an additional English class for immigrants this Wednesday (due to popular demand), we'll be heading to Germany for our annual church retreat in two and a half weeks, and of course we'll have our second Irish Thanksgiving soon after that.  Life is busy, but life is good. - Shay  

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


I find the sea, well, water in general and the ocean in particular so very powerful.  Looking out from the cliffs of Howth into the vast and seemingly endless body of water that is the Irish Sea, I'm reminded that God's creation is quite big and amazing and I by contrast am quite small and insignificant.  And yet, as Psalm 8 says, we humans are made just a little bit lower than the angels.  We're at the top of God's good, no, his very good creation.  So as much as I love the outdoors and the fantastic beauty of God's artistic design, how much more am I amazed by family, friends and neighbors!

Two years ago tomorrow Ashlyn breathed the breath of life for the first time.  Having Ashlyn has made me love humanity even more than before and hate some other things with a greater passion.  I hate war, crime, disease, accidents, and the general brokenness of this world far more than I did before Ashlyn arrived.  And as she gets older, I not only love her more and more, but I've found that I love other people more too as I'm reminded that everyone's some mother's or father's son or daughter.  Knowing that Ashlyn, like all people will have to live through and face the brokenness of God's good creation (and the brokenness of her own life and the lives of those who will live around her due to sin), I'm even more grateful that God has already begun to recreate this world in anticipation of the new creation in the age to come!  This is good news worth living and good news worth sharing. - Shay