Dear Family and Friends,
You’ll soon be receiving our Christmas email update written by Danny, so for this Christmas letter you’ll simply be receiving the ponderings of a mother’s heart.
As I reflect on this past year, nothing brings me greater earthly joy than thoughts of my family. Danny has such an enthusiastic love and playfulness toward his children, and a way of cherishing and supporting their mother so that she can excel in serving them. Daniel Josiah, a vibrant, perceptive little boy who loves life, and play, and his “Da Da”, “Ma Ma” and “Thhsths” ( “Trinity”-all his unpronounceable words, end up sounding like this). He loves playing wrestling with his own built-in “ooohhh” “uuuh” sound effects and over dramatize motions of being thrown to the floor, as well as reading (MANY) books, helping mommy cook and clean, getting whisked off with Daddy to “work” in the youth center, and hanging out with “Brrr” one of the guys who lives with us. Miss Trinity Kathleen is the sweetest, most darling girl to behold. She willingly flashes a huge, dimpled grin to anyone who comes up to talk to her. She has a lot to say back, as she coo’s and makes delightful noises in response.
Being a stay at home mom not only allows me to spend all day enjoying and training and molding my own children, but I also get to work alongside Danny as he works out of our home. Proverbs says “the wise woman builds her home” and this is the high calling the Lord has put on my life, as a wife and mother. As I prayerfully seek the Lord’s strength, wisdom, and creativity to do so, our home becomes a “character molding center” not only for our immediate family, but for all who are welcomed into it as part of our life and ministry. As we pray “Your kingdom come, your will be done”, our desire is that our family and home would be a place of that Kingdom coming for the world, and more immediately, our community, to see blood-bought sinners, dwelling together in covenant unity, and love, often falling, but ever rising again by the strength of our Lord. As we ‘work” on our home life, we provide something not just for ourselves but something our neighborhood kids long for and need to see, as well.
In October, the local high school had open house for parents and guardians. We planned to attend to see how “our” two boys, Vernard (17)and Brian (18), were doing. News got out, as we got ready to go , several more teens stopped by so that they could go with us. We ended up having to take two different cars and had many more teacher conferences than expected, as each teen wanted us to go in and check with their teacher so that we could hear a report on them…even if they weren’t expecting a good one. We had a great night with the teens, with our little kids, and with the teachers, but at the same time my heart was so sad. It was touching that these youth were so eager to have us, their “surrogate” parents, talk with their teachers, notice their progress, or encourage them where they were struggling, but I had to ask “Where are their parents and why don’t they care?”. As we went to drop off one of the kids at the local YMCA (where his mom was staying because they had recently been evicted) I reflected on how much these kids long to be part of a family, one that cares to notice when they excel or even when they don’t, but need encouragement, or even discipline to do so. How thankful I am, that Danny and I are not the ultimate source of family for these youth. Jesus Christ, Lord of Heaven and Earth, came to be born into a frail earthly family, so that we, and each of these teens, could be born into a heavenly, eternal Family. The family of the Dad who dies for his children, instead of abandoning them; the Father who lovingly disciplines, instead of ignoring them out of apathy and selfishness, the Brother who seeks to share all the inheritance of heaven, instead of the mother who would rather buy cigarettes or stuff than provide for her child. What a stark contrast. What a glorious hope. This is what Christmas is about. A Savior born. A hope fulfilled. A family created.
Let earth receive her king.
“Yet to all who receive him, to those
who believe in His name, he gave the right to become children of God”
An adopted Child of the King,
Kimberly (and the Iversons)
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