Merry Christmas! Since this has been such an amazing year for our family, we decided to write about it in our first Christmas letter. God has gotten us through the difficulties and given us multiple blessings.
Barry – God answered our prayers in a big way this year, as Barry has seen his dream of pastoring and preaching become a reality. The year started out with a mission trip to Ciudad Acuña, Mexico. Barry loved sharing the Gospel there so much that now he is helping his professor lead the 2009 trip. Over spring break, Barry had the opportunity to preach a revival near Spokane, Washington. He preached another revival in May when God sent us to Wamsutter, Wyoming. Shortly after returning from the trip, Barry was called to pastor at Hay Valley Baptist Church in his hometown of Gatesville, Texas. (We still live close to the seminary in Fort Worth and drive to his mom’s house on the weekends.) What a blessing the church has been to us! We have felt their love and have enjoyed being a part of the family. Barry had a lot on his plate this Fall: pastoring, assisting Dr. Carrigan, being ordained, and taking 16 hours of classes! But God has been gracious and good. Barry will likely graduate with his Masters of Divinity from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in May.
Karen – The highlight of Karen’s year was vacationing in Estes Park, Colorado. On the way to Wyoming for Barry’s revival, our family spent a few days enjoying the awesome beauty of God’s creation at the Rocky Mountain National Park. Karen had fun this summer getting to know people from church and participating in Vacation Bible School. The Fall was very busy for Karen, too. As the Vice President of Metochai, the Seminary wives’ organization, she lined up the speakers for the year. As Publicity Chair for MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers), she put together the monthly newsletter. She also took a night class designed for seminary wives. But mostly, Karen spends her time taking care of her husband, children, and home.
Abigail – Our little princess turned 3 this year, and what better way to celebrate than having a princess party! She came as Cinderella, one of her favorite characters. Her biggest hobby right now is building really elaborate towers with wooden blocks. She goes to a two-hour a week preschool at the Fort Worth Museum in which she learns about a different animal or nature topic every week. She is starting to learn how to sound out simple words. Here favorite things include Dora, Curious George, BOZ, Little People, and Veggie Tales. Funny quote: Pointing at a stained glass window in the middle of the children’s sermon at Hay Valley, she shouted, “Look Daddy, there’s a shepherd! It’s Jesus!”
Reuben – Mr. Reu celebrated his 1st birthday this year with a BOZ, the big green bear, cake. He’s a very active little boy now. His favorite activities include climbing, turning knobs, pushing buttons, shutting doors, eating and playing peek-a-boo. He’s very smiley and cuddly. He’s just now starting to say more words, like “row row row” and “poo poo.”
New Baby – That’s right! We’re expecting another one in July. We’re excited and thankful to God for this huge blessing!
May you have a wonderful Christmas as you remember the miracle of the Savior’s birth. "Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel" (which means, God with us). –Matthew 1:23