Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Psych Profile

Today, the girls and I met up with our friend, Katie (otherwise known as Joshua's and my little sis), so that she could interview me, and then interview Jovey for a paper for one of her grad classes in counseling. Here are a few of the many humorous things I overheard Jovey say in her time with Katie:

Katie: Who is your favorite friend to play with?
Jovey: Mommy and Daddy
Katie: Oh yeah? But if Mommy and Daddy can't play, who do you like to play with?"
Jovey: I told you, Mommy and Daddy.
Katie: Oh, anyone else?
Jovey: Oh yeah, Nana and Grandad!

Katie: What is your favorite book?
Jovey: Olivia!
Katie: How come?
Jovey: Because I LOVE how it sounds! OH-LIV-I-AAAAAHHHH! (she giggled a lot afterward)

There were many more moments, but I only caught them here and there while chasing after a jabbering and super fast Laney Belle around the school! I hope she always considers mommy and daddy some of her best friends, even if we aren't cool for a time during the teen years!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

"What's That On It?"

Joshua, Jovey, Laney and myself made a visit to the mall tonight to grab a quick bite to eat after our 2 hour car ride back home from Bowling Green. Joshua needed a repair to a charm that his mom and dad had gotten him for his high school graduation that he has worn since the day they gave it to him, so as Laney and I finished up our dinner, Joshua took our fidgety Jovey Kay with him to see what the damage would be to send off for the repair at a local jeweler. Since it was within our budget, Joshua filled out the paperwork to get the sentimental piece fixed and as they waited for the jeweler to finalize all the paperwork, Jovey and Joshua had a conversation, as does any person who is around Jovey for more than. . . 20 seconds!

Jovey: "Daddy, look, there's a cross like yours, what's that on it?" (referring to a very large, gold crucifix charm in the glass case)
Joshua: "Oh, that's Jesus!"
Jovey: "Yes, He died on the cross!"
Joshua: "What happened after that?"
Jovey: "On the third day, He rose for our sins!"
Joshua: "That's exactly right, Jovey!"

There is nothing that makes our hearts happier than to see our 3 year old grasp the simple concepts that God loves her, He sent his son, Jesus, to die and then to raise again for all the bad stuff we do (as Jovey says), and that now, we can live in joy when we accept that awesome gift! Never underestimate the power of God, even in the heart and mind of a preschooler who teaches me more by her childlike faith than any theologian ever could!

A New Place

I have always been super blessed to witness the blessings and the curses of the high calling (that also serves as the main source of family income) of full time ministry, first in my father's role as a pastor and local missionary and now, in my husband's role as first, a youth pastor and now, a lead pastor at a small church in rural Kentucky. Nothing can bring more joy and at times, more frustration, then seeing the men you love work diligently to serve God and serve others, as obviously deamed the most important commandments by Jesus Christ in Mark 12:30-31.

I never fully grasped what giving your whole life over to do the work of God truly meant. I never got that my dad could have done anything else and made more money, provided more "stuff" for us to enjoy, provided a more open schedule that could even allow sleeping in on Sunday mornings, should Saturday evening been rough. He could have, but God called him to live a sacrificial life that included long, odd hours, busy weekends with conference leading and attending, long, hard Sundays and lots of hours studying God's word for personal growth as well as guidance in how to lead others to grow in Christ. God saw that I didn't totally grasp the joys and the importance of such a calling of people in His kingdom, so he sent me Joshua, whose life could again have been filled with prestige, money, stuff and time, but instead, God blesses us with more than we could imagine through the joy of being a family that is committed to leading a life that is hopefully a testimony of God's great grace!

We have recently been more humbled by God's recent calling to Joshua to accept the call to serve in this different area of ministry of lead pastor's family. God uses us, His people, to share His love with others. He could have done anythingand shown his greatness by any means he wanted, but he created people and then, he decided that he would send His only son, Jesus Christ, to be the sacrifice for all of our sins, and calling us to Him, he would change our hearts, our minds, and give us overwhelming desires to follow Him, no matter the cost. I will never stop being amazed at how very unworthy I am and how very awesome that God is to show us his power in real and true ways in the smallest and biggest of ways each day that we live.

I pray that our little family never loses sight of where God has called us and what He has called us to in this fishbowl that is the minister's home. I won't always raise my children how some of our "church folk" might agree and Joshua won't always bring the best messages or say all of the right words that spur people to grow closer to Christ, but with the grace and wisdom God provides, we pray that when people see the McFarlands, they see the sincere desires of our hearts, which first and foremost are to love God and then very second, to love others. . . our family, our friends and those who have yet to know Christ!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Happy B-day, Joshua!

What a gift it is that I get to spend my life with this man! He swept me off my feet back in 2000 and since then, I find more and more things to love about Joshua; like the way he giggles when something is really funny to him or the way his face wrinkles up around his eyes when he is smiling big or doing said giggling. Then there is the fun way that he likes to surprise me with fun times out that are just when I need them, especially for me as a stay at home mommy that needs to get out and about in the "big people" world sometimes! There is his gentle way of putting all the many things on his plate to the side to make time for me and for his beautiful girls, knowing that this life is too short to work too hard without enjoying the love of family! Of course, there is the caring and fun way he plays with Jovey and Laney, taking each moment he has with them as if they were his last. I love how people just flock to him for no apparent reason, besides the fact that God has blessed him with a wonderful personality that I'm sure few people would deny loving! There are so many reasons that Joshua is super special and it would take all day to record the many ways he is the perfect man that God has sent to me, the girls and the people who have the privilege of being lead to learn and grow in Christ because of his gifts as a minister!

Happy birthday, Joshua, and always rest in knowing that your biggest fans in life are always home to greet you and let you know that you are right where you need to be in this life, no matter how crazy, hectic it becomes some days!