Monday, October 26, 2009

Fun with teens

Dark video, but here's the plot. It's the IPOD game on the way to Hellhouse (that's a WHOLE other post). His buddy is helping him out, and I'm hiding the camera from him at some parts. The game is just you putting in your headphones, singing at the top of your lungs just like you would with no one around. Close your eyes, and you provide so much enjoyment for your friends. Watch as Nate gets an unexpected surprise from Baxter.
video

jammin' out in the Pickup line.

Here's the little guy that I watch, jammin' out to some JT in the pickup line. Enjoy.
video

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Rain

I'm not complaining about all the rain we've been having. It's not that bad that the kids have been stuck indoors for weeks now, and are taking out their pent up energy on each other and me. It's really okay that Princess has decided that it's too wet to go outside to use the restroom, so the carpet has become her potty. I've really accepted the fact that it's been about 2 weeks of bad hair days, where my hair stays in a ponytail except for all the wild uncontrollable hairs that stick up and out everywhere. You get the point.

It's all okay. We had a break in the rain this weekend. The sun has never seemed so bright. The air was crisp, clear, and relatively free of humidity. You couldn't help but feel cheery when you stepped into the sunlight to just soak it all in.

Isn't that true for the trials and stresses of our life as well? We cling closer to our creator when we feel strained, troubled, and relunctant. At the end of the long tunnel, there's always light when we believe.

In life, sometimes you need a little rain to appreciate the Son.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

The Ups and Downs of Teen Ministry

7 or 8 years ago, I can't say I'd ever imagine myself saying this, but I love teenagers. I love that if they have a hard shell exterior that you can break it down with nothing but a little time, truth, and respect. If I'm having a bad day, I've almost always forgotten what a rotten mood I'm in after hanging out with the teens from the ministry that God has allowed us to lead. It's amazing and wonderful.

We're reaching our second year marker, (and hoperfully going strong for more) in just a few weeks. As I'm sure a lot of you know, 2 years is a really long time for a ministry to have a youth pastor. Typical turnover in this vocation is around a year and a half, max. It's not easy. In adult ministry, you have people, their faults, and their baggage. In children's ministry, or youth ministry, you have teens, or children and their issues, and their parents and their baggage and hangups too. You've got to walk that fine line between discipleship and making sure you and the parents are on that same page. If your not, it gets slippery, and frustrating. We're pretty darn lucky that we haven't had to tackle that situation much. We do tend to take it hard when it does happen though. We take it personally, when maybe we shouldn't, and we question the big picture when maybe it's a small blip on the radar. It's hard. (Did I mention that?)

The funny thing is, the easiest part about youth ministry is the teens themselves. I guess that's a positive affirmation for what we feel we've been called to do. When God works through you, you tend to know it. In a big way. Knowing that you won't always see the fruits of what you do, makes it easier when you don't. I just wish everything else was that simple.

Earnestly craving your prayers,

Amy

Thursday, October 8, 2009

10 years

I missed my opportunity to blog for my anniversary, but I won't let something like a date keep me from gesticulating.

It's been 10 years of marriage for me and the hubbs. As usual, I'd like to share with you some highlights of our relationship.

In 1998, I told one of my new friends at college that I thought this weird guy in Piano 101 was cute. He would always play with the demo button on his keyboard, and act like a fool. I appreciated his ability to shrug off the odd looks from people. (I've had a love hate relationship with this quality of his for the past 10 years...). Long story short, she told him, he asked me out, and that was that. We've been together ever since.

In 1999 we got married, and spent one weekend at the Peabody Hotel in Memphis, TN for our honeymoon. He took a tremendous amount of hours at school, I dropped out and went to work in retail...

In 2000 around our first anniversary, I came out of the bathroom (where I had just taken a pregnancy test, and screamed when I learned the results)to find him slowly rocking himself back and forth in our living room, almost in the fetal position, if you will. Yes, our first child was on it's way.
After our second and third daughter arrived, I soon adjusted to the fact that this would be his approach to raising children. Slowly acknowledge the terror of parenting, and then dust himself off and take what was given to him. This works well for us.

Baxter felt the call to youth ministry after 6 years of intensive study for something he will never use. Exercise physiology. That's okay. Somehow, we landed exactly where we needed to land. Now our Sundays and Wednesdays involve a lot of "hanging out", reading the bible, and making teenagers eat some of the nastiest food you've never tried. It's the good life.

There are lots of things that make our marriage work for us so well...
Here's a list of them.

* In arguments, we know our roles. I will yell and scream, and then give the silent treatment, and he will calmly take forever to realize when he is wrong. And on those rare instances that I am wrong, (tongue in cheek of course)he will wait for me to come around.

* We work as a team. When the kids gang up on us and try to take over the fort, one of us knows whose turn it is to go scream at them. I kid, I kid. We both give
100% of all we have. It's not 50/50.

* We are best friends first. Whenever I see something stupid or funny, he's the first one I want to call. Whenever he does something stupid or funny, I'm the first person to make fun of him.

We celebrated well for this anniversary. We went on a cruise, I got french doors for my new house, and we went out to eat at Red Lobster. Here's to 10 more years of screaming at our kids, making teenagers eat gross stuff, and loving each other!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

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