Saturday, January 30, 2010

Family Mission Statement

This paragraph sums up how we want to lead our family:

"My parents worked hard to create a home atmosphere that encouraged us kids to take God seriously but not take ourselves too seriously. The flavor of Christianity they cultivated in our family was joyful, warm, inviting, hospitable, and real, not legalistic or oppressive. We laughed hard and often mostly at ourselves. We were trained to think deeply about God, to feel passionately for God, and to live urgently in response to God. The gospel according to my parents needed to be understood with our heads, felt with our hearts, and worked out with our hands. Anything short of this was a less-than balanced expresson of true Christianity. They taught us to think, to read, to pray, to sing, to cry to love, to serve."
--Tullian Tchividjian
from the book Unfashionable

Well Said

Friday, January 29, 2010

Pacifica, Ca

I just happened to hear on the story on the news of Pacifica, California. I guess certain parts of the ocean cliffs are eroding and homes are threatened to fall into the ocean. If you care to read or see images, Go to this link.

The reason it struck an interest is because we were just there the other day. The day before we left San Fran. Mike wanted to go see the Pacific Ocean's waves and maybe catch a glimpse of people surfing. The weather had been rainy. When we got to the shore, it wasn't raining anymore, but really really windy and cold. Owen kept saying, "I don't like this place" which is why you won't see any pictures of his face :)

It was a beautiful place to visit, no surfers however due to the weather. If i had the choice of living in San Fran, this place is by far the best: gorgeous ocean views, much better than living crammed among the houses in the heart of the city and only about 15 minutes outside of everything, (if that).

Although this view is that bad either. Mike took this pic after we drove up to Twin Peaks, a mountain top view of the city lights. Notice the Golden Gate bridge in the distance. Owen wasn't crazy about his place either, "I'm really cold."

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Haiti Relief

I believe it was last summer when a missionary named Brad Johnson spoke at our church. His story was a resonating and powerful testimony of what happens when a couple says "Yes" to God's calling.
They founded Mission of Hope Haiti and here is the link to their Website
Summit Church has been rallying medical teams to go serve in Haiti. Tonight during the service they told a story of a young girl whom they thought had lost her parents, so they sent her to the Mission of Hope orphanage. The next day the leaders of the team learned that she had been a child slave and there were 2 different families fighting over her and wanting her back. So not only was she saved from the nightmare of being injured in the Earthquake, but also saved her from continuing in the nightmare of a life in childhood slavery. She is safe in the loving arms of the Christian orphange who can tell her of God's love and purpose for her life. The following is an email sent from one of our pastors, Todd Milby, who is still in Haiti.

I have been on the ground in Port-au-Prince this last week and am currently there now. Yesterday the first of potentially three medical teams from Summit returned home and we have mobilized all kinds of resources for our partner, Mission of Hope Haiti, because of your generosity. I say potentially, because right now we cannot confirm the other flights for this Tuesday and Wednesday from our partner Missionary Flights International. Today there are 120 landing slots into Port-au-Prince and 1700 planes wanting to land. We had a team from Austin, TX coming in today and got their landing permission revoked at the last minute and rescheduled for tomorrow afternoon. They have significant contacts and still couldn't land.

In spite of having a hard time getting people and resources into Haiti, Mission of Hope has distributed 1.5 million meals to the Haitian people since the earthquake hit. Last Thursday they distributed more than 391,056 meals, almost doubling the efforts of the UN. They do all of this through indigenous church leaders and Christian ministries that make up over 1000 distribution points in a network MOH initiated called Haiti One. Haiti One represents 40 Christians NGOs, and hundreds of smaller missions and Haitian churches with more than 5000 full-time staff represented in it. They are rallied around the vision to reach the nation with the Gospel and during this difficult time have been extremely effective at bringing relief where it is most needed distributing food, water, and temporary shelter. They were already in place and operating this network prior to the disaster and that is why they have been so successful. It is primarily driven by Haitians which is also the reason for their success. It is their own people meeting the needs. They know their culture, context, and the need. Mission of Hope has also provided and facilitated dozens of medical teams that have literally served thousands in the name of the Gospel.

Mission of Hope Haiti was established 12 years ago by their President, Brad Johnson. NBC Nightly News did a story about them last Tuesday on the "Making a Difference" segment with Brian Williams. The link to view the story is on their website, I hope you will be able to share this very effective and on-mission organization with others so we can partner with MOH to reach this nation. It might be Haiti's darkest hour, but it will be the Churches brightest. Thank you Summit Church for your generosity and sending myself and our team the opportunity to go on behalf of the Church to reach this nation in what will be a defining moment in it's history that will bring much glory to the Father.

God Bless,
Todd Milby,
Mission Leader

God so moved me that I gave my name as a volunteer willing to go with the medical teams when they are ready to accept Physical Therapists. When this will happen, I don't know, but I ask that whoever reads this will pray for me and all that this willingness entails. From safety over there, to the necessary materials and products I may need, to safety and understanding for my family here, etc.!
Right now I just know that I need to be willing and if God allows, then I will go!

This is the link to view the NBC video about Mission of Hope

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

I hate goodbyes

Brad and Heather have left for Argentina. My sister and her family heard God's call to missions nearly 2 years ago. Today is the day they have been planning so hard for and I am still not ready to let them go. I am so excited to watch God's handiwork in their lives, but a one way ticket to South America with no plans of returning does not thrill me too much. I have loved spending time with her lately and my boys are so crazy about their cousins.
It is an incredible thing when God's purpose is lived out among his believers!
We love you Ives family and will miss you daily and tremendously!

"The LORD bless you
and keep you;

the LORD make his face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;

the LORD turn his face toward you
and give you peace."

Sunday, January 17, 2010

The wedding pictures

I have had no time to post lately, but here are the links to the photographers website for my sister's wedding. Take a look if you like :)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

House for Sale

We have a wonderful realtor whose name is Heather Wightman. You can find her on
and while you are there you can click on this link and Go visit our House .
We just got news this morning that we got an offer on it.
Going to sign the papers this afternoon, so I will keep you posted.
Praise God!!
I am excited for what is next!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Two Great Men

This morning we are mourning the loss of the life of Mike's Grandfather, Arlton Connell. Two years ago on this very same day, My grandfather, Ed Wallen, passed away as well.
Arlton grew up in Central Florida, worked as a Railroad Engineer.
Ed grew up in Northern Pennsylvania and worked in the Steel Mill.
Two great men, neither of which lived this life with much money, power, or fame. But, nontheless had tremendous influence in the lives of those they loved. Both men will continue to be missed.

Arlton Connell

Ed Wallen