Leaving the nest 

Carson moved off to college this week.  She’s beginning her freshman year and living on the university campus.

While we’ve been preparing for this moment all summer…maybe all year…it finally hit home when we moved Carson into the residence hall and drove away without her.

For Carson- it’s a time of excitement, but there’s also a fear of the unknown.  There are so many new experiences ahead.

It’s the first of many transitions for her.  New relationships.  New challenges. New obstacles.

We all face life changes.  Maybe they aren’t as dramatic and storied as moving away from college, but they are just as important- and daunting.

We encounter new roles at work.  Perhaps even a new job.

Children move away.  Parents move in.

Marriage.  Or divorce.

A move.  An illness.

But there is one constant.

Jesus.

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9

What an incredible comfort!  Read that passage from Joshua again.  Please.

Be strong.  Courageous. Don’t fear. Don’t be dismayed. Lord…is with you.

Life is full of uncertainty and new experiences, but the love of Jesus never changes.  His focus and love of us is ever-present.

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.  Hebrews 13:8

My prayer this week will be for Carson and her new journey to college.  I will also say a prayer of thanksgiving for Jesus…and His unending love for Carson, you and me.

And let me know how to pray for you.

God bless.

 

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21 years and still learning

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Hollianne and I are celebrating 21 years of marriage today. 

Things were much simpler back in that summer of 1995.  We had a one bedroom apartment, a used green Ford Mustang and a 19 inch television.  I was working my first job out of grad school at a private college in Marietta, Ohio.  Hollianne was student teaching at Washington Elementary school.  We could both walk to work.

I also remember us having lots of free time.  While we were both busy at work, the evenings were ours.  We would walk downtown for dinner and sit by the river for hours on end.  We drove through the Amish countryside on weekends in search of antiques we couldn’t afford.  And on weekends that Fall- we made the six hour drive from Marietta to Knoxville to cheer on our beloved Volunteers.

We had time.  We spent it with each other.  It was an early investment in our marriage.

Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.  Genesis 2:24

Life’s much more complicated now.  We’d added three active children.  Our jobs take us away from each other during the week, and the sports schedules of the kids cause us to split up each weekend.

We wouldn’t have it any other way…our family’s activities make for great memories.

He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the Lord.  Proverbs 18:22

While life events can complicate our marriages, it can also mature these relationships. If we’re lucky, we’ll notice when our relationships need adjustment or renewed focus. 

I love Hollianne even more today than I did way back in 1995. I’ve witnessed her give birth and raise our three children. I’ve watched her take care of parents and relatives during time of distress and need. I’ve seen her care for friends when crisis rocked their lives. 

And I’ve experienced her incredible grace over and over again. 

She’s my partner. My soulmate. My example. And my friend. 

Pray for me to be the husband that Hollianne needs. She deserves it. 

And let me know how to pray for you. 

God bless you. 

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