Dec 3, 2019

October - November 2019: Ministry, Finals, & Family Visits

October and November were filled to the brim with ministry, finals, and family visits. Here are the highlights!

In October, we started out with a weekend retreat with the youth. The theme was "Love your neighbor [across the aisle]." We talked about how Jesus' ethic of love even applies to politics in the heat of political fervor. We had a photo scavenger hunt, ate too many snacks, and enjoyed each other's company on top of it all. Please pray that we would be a light in the upcoming dark season in America: presidential election season.

Here is a game of chair basketball the kids got REALLY into.
(Maybe even a little too much)

Here's a photo of some strong high school youth 
completing a "push up challenge" for the scavenger hunt.

Also, Amber and I invested in some bird seed and feeders to enjoy birds on our deck. Here's some of the best photos we could snap:
House Finches

Sometimes you watch birds and sometimes birds watch you.

Sparrow (Clearly the inspiration for "angry birds")

Titmouse

Nuthatch

 Cardinal (Male)

Mockingbird

Downy Woodpecker

Chickadee
Finally, Amber and I visited Mulberry Orchard with some friends. We picked apples and had a yummy apple-barbecue lunch.




November was a whirlwind with church renovations, finals, and thanksgiving in VA. If you want to see the church renovations, then come visit or watch a recent service online. πŸ˜ƒThe biggest deal with finals was Hebrew. I exhausted myself on the paper and final exam. I learned a lot though, so I am thankful! On our visit to VA for thanksgiving we saw most of our family and it was a nice break from the pace of life leading up to finals. We took some photos with Amber's side of the family (seen below). Our other family gathering had too many moving parts for a photo op, but we still had a great time. πŸ˜€

And finally, driving through West Virginia is usually uneventful, but this was...different. At Burger King there were more cats than people. Since when do cats come in packs? And naturally, a dog was quite intrigued.

That is six cats in one Burger King parking lot. Watch out folks, they are organizing. 

One concerned dog. Who could blame him?

If you read until the end, then you must really love us, because that was a longer-than-usual post.  I hope your December is starting well and you take time to intentionally celebrate Jesus throughout. It is too easy to neglect and be washed away by a deluge of busyness.


"And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, 
glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. ...
16 For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace." 
John 1:14, 16


Oct 11, 2019

September 2019: Netflix is how much?

Family and Friends,
here is an overview of September!

New
Early September we got to lead some youth on a local service project to help Good News Homes. I failed to take many good pictures, but here is a glimpse:
Cleaning up trimmed bushes


Also, My parents came in town to visit us. We had a great time with them at Bernheim Forest and downtown Louisville. We walked the park, ate out, and talked/prayed with a homeless gentleman downtown Louisville. (shortly after he showed us this camera) It was a joy to see family and it made us anticipate more time like this during the holidays! Also, my dad has a favorite "Youtuber" that films in Louisville. I usually only hear youth at church talk about their favorite "Youtubers," so that was funny. Sorry we didn't have time to visit him, Dad!




I preached a sermon on the conception and birth of Jesus, so I showed clip of me on my 1st birthday as an illustration. The youth thought it was fun and it worked to get their attention. Here it is if you want to check it out. (It starts at 10:50)






Funny

Elementary school kids are endlessly funny around Amber. Here are two boys discussing finances:  (with names changed, of course!)

Bill: We never subscribed to Netflix.
Ben: how much even is Netflix?
Bill: I don't know - maybe a couple hundred...or couple thousand...a month.


Also, Amber found this meme and sent it to me. I can vouch for its truthfulness! Hebrew this semester is an (arduous) labor of love.


Pray
Would you pray for me, Bronson, for grace and discipline to persevere to the end of the semester? The last few weeks I have been burning the candle at both ends. Consequently, I have acutely experienced fatigue.

I asked Amber how you all could pray for her and she did not respond. It could have been the mouthwash she was using at the time, but I choose to think she just does not want you praying for her. [Can you hear the sarcasm?] I know she would like prayer for wisdom to be a loving teacher, co-worker, and employee. Sometimes work is hard and she wants to do best by the Lord and by those of whom she serves. She is great like that. Your prayers are appreciated.


Book Recommendation
I had to read some dull books this last month, but this one challenged and encouraged me. It is about how the church can reclaim the home as a primary place kids and youth are built up in their faith. I am still praying and thinking about how it changes my daily practice, but I commend it to you. It is a book directed towards Pastors, but parents would find gems within also!



Finally, we leave you with this compelling quote about a Christian's love for God:

"Little children, guard yourselves from idols." 1 John 5:21

Sep 13, 2019

August 2019: Another Semester Begins...Everywhere!

This is a monthly update for family and friends about the life of Bronson and Amber. It does not always make it to Facebook, so if you want it in your inbox, send me your email!


New & Exciting
  • Late August we started back with Wednesdays at church for all ages. We are covering the Apostles Creed this fall with the youth. There are some who have already memorized it! The Lord has blessed us recently with growth: We started strong with a record breaking attendance on the first night!
  • We are trying to pioneer a new ministry on Wednesday with a Young Adults group! If you know of a young adult in Oldham, KY, I would love to connect them to Jesus and to our church community!
  • This school semester has started for both Amber and Myself. She started teaching school again and is also enrolled in a Seminary Wives Institute class about interpreting the Bible. I started the first semester of my last year in this (MDiv) program. I am taking the classes: Exegesis of Isaiah, Theology of St. Augustine, and Discipleship and Family Ministry. Isaiah is by far the most demanding, but I am growing a lot through it!
  • We also finished a refresh for youth meeting spaces in the gym. (I promise it is cleaner now- This was taken just after the paint dried.) πŸ˜€ Here is a before and after photo, along with a hyper-lapse video of the finishing touches for the worship space.

Before

After


  • Whilst relaxing in Louisville, we took some time to walk the creek at Cherokee Park. This photo makes this 1 foot "waterfall" look huge. 




Prayer
Here are a few ways you can keep us in prayer:

  • That we would find a rhythm in this new busy season that is consistent with the priorities God has given us.
  • That the Lord would continue to bless our health. We had some health problem during the summer that could pop back up. A blog is not the place for details, but your prayers are invaluable.
  • For the ministry- that our love for Jesus would soar and our number would multiply.

Book
I decided to unwind after my Summer semester and read something just for fun. I tried the Harry Potter Series and loved the adventure! I know some people don't read these as a matter of conscience, but if you can, then I recommend it. They are well written, funny, and fast moving. I understand why  impressionable persons would want to avoid them- they are about a fictional world of magic which does not reflect a Biblical worldview. If you don't think this is a matter of conscience, by that rule you might also need to throw out CS Lewis' Narnia Series. It includes magic, some of which is performed by the "good guys" in the story. (see chapter 10 in Voyage of the Dawn Treader) I enjoyed the read. It helped me unwind from a long summer. It doesn't suite everyone, but maybe you would enjoy the adventure sometime as well.