Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Carrying Life

This was shared with me today. Powerful and inspiring words that I want to remember. A great lesson on the partnership and mission we share with our Creator in bringing life into the world.


My willingness to carry life is the revenge, the antidote, the great rebuttal of every murder, every abortion, and every genocide. I sustain humanity. Deep inside of me, life grows. I am death's opposition.

I have pushed back the hand of darkness today. I have caused there to be a weakening tremor among the ranks of those set on earth's destruction. Today a vibration that calls angels to attention echoed throughout time. Our laughter threatened hell today.

I dined with the greats of God's army. I made their meals, and tied their shoes. Today, I walked with greatness, and when they were tired I carried them. I have poured myself out for the cause today.

It is finally quiet, but life stirs inside of me. Gaining strength, the pulse of life sends a constant reminder to both good and evil that I have yielded myself to Heaven and now carry its dream. No angel has ever had such a priviledge, nor any man. I am humbled by the honor. I am great with destiny.

I birth the freedom fighters. In the great war, I am a leader of underground resistance. I smile at the disguise of my troops, surrounded by a host of warriors, destiny swirling, invisible yet tangible, and the anointing to alter history. Our footsteps marking land for conquest, we move undetected through the common places.

Today I was the barrier between evil and innocence. I was the gate keeper, watching over the hope of mankind, and no intruder trespassed. There is not an hour of day or night when I turn from my post. The fierceness of my love is unmatched on earth.

And because I smiled instead of frowned the world will know the power of grace. Hope has feet, and it will run to the corners of earth, because I stood up against destruction.
I am a woman. I am a mother. I am the keeper and sustainer of life here on earth. Heaven stands in honor of my mission. No one else can carry my call. I am the daughter of Eve. Eve has been redeemed. I am the opposition of death. I am a woman.

Christianna Reed Maas, 2010

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Titan and Nolan

We are loving that Titan is such a big source of entertainment these days. After Titan destroyed Nolan's stackable rings, I wasn't so sure about him. He has now redeemed himself.

video

Thursday, February 18, 2010

February Update

The poor blog has once again taken a backseat to the many things that always seem to fill my time. Jeremy and I are loving our little man and treasuring all of the things that are so fun at this age. I am still loving my job, though we are facing yet another transition with our youth ministry as my co-worker will leave at the end of February to begin a mens' ministry in Jackson, TN. Jeremy is currently training for an ultra marathon - 33 miles (crazy, I know). It is a trail run near Birmingham, AL and there is a place on the course where you have to use your hands! What?!?

Recently God has been teaching me that everything good that comes out of me is ALL HIM! Sometimes I think that the wise advise, display of patience, word of knowledge, and creative streak are my own doing. Then I realize that what comes naturally to me is to speak too quickly without first listening, snap at Jeremy, forget something important, and do a mediocre job. When I remember to acknowledge God for what He's doing in me, He gives me more.

Here's a quick photo update of our growing boy. Nolan is eight months old. He has four teeth, but not the usual four that most babies first get. We've got the normal two on the bottom. The two on top, however, are the "lateral incisors" aka "vampire teeth." Does Nolan have two front teeth? I certainly hope so, but they are currently no where to be seen. Right now he looks kinda funny, but he's awfully cute.

Nolan says, "ba ba ba" and "da da da." He laughs hysterically at Titan. Hopefully a video will soon follow. His blond hair is getting thicker and his blue eyes get brighter everyday. Nolan loves turning the pages of his books and pointing at pictures (with his left hand only). He's a sturdy sitter, but still wobbles while standing. No crawling yet - and I must say that I'm enjoying that. He loves to practice his standing at the Wallace's Leapfrog music table.


Enjoying some oatmeal. Still nursing 5 times a day, but tasting fruits and veggies on the side.

20 pounds at our last appointment and in the 80% for both height and weight. We're slimming down :)

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Thanksgiving

The Vest family spent Thanksgiving with the rest of the Vests in Nashville this year. We had a wonderful weekend celebrating the holiday and eating everything in sight. I have loved being a member of the Vest clan and time together is especially fun now that there are three little ones to play with. I love that Nolan is sandwiched in between his two Vest cousins - Jon Harper and Virginia.

Jeremy and his brother Johnathan took their boys out for a 5K run - the Habitrot. They got in an extra workout pushing those jogging strollers. The best part - while they were running, I was sleeping lazily in my bed.....which I had all to myself :) Nolan spent the 5K sleeping as well thanks to my sister-in-law Elizabeth who loaned us Jon Harper's Patagonia fleeze bunting.

Other favorite moments of the holiday week:
The Vest family photo shoot (see pictures below), watching Biggest Loser, being treated to a mani & pedi by my sister-in-law Jennifer, catching up with Sara over Starbucks, free babysitting while the sibs went to see The Blind Side, a delicious Thanksgiving meal prepared by Nola, Vest family breakfast at Cracker Barrel - always a special treat, having lunch with my parents and grandparents at the lake, laughing as my Grandmommy retold the renowned story of my grandparents first meeting in Centennial Park when they were 16 and 21, receiving a beat down from my dad after challenging him to a game of Bible Trivia, a scrumptious brunch at Liz's house, and Nolan laughing hysterically at Jon Harper's Elmo doll. I just realized how many of my favorite moments involved food! Oh well.....such is the season :)


Thursday, October 29, 2009

Catching Up

The Vest family has been joyfully adjusting to life with a four month old, but sadly the blog has taken a backseat as of late. So here's to catching up. I am personally thankful that my week of travel is over. I had to leave Nolan for the first time the week before last - two nights at a staff retreat during the week and another night on a teen girls' trip to Atlanta over the weekend. It was hard on the heart to leave my little boy behind. Jeremy did an amazing job taking care of him and their time together was very special to them both. They covered some expansive terrain in the jogging stroller and went to Home Depot. I returned home to a house that was in perfect condition and Jeremy took pride in rattling off his list of house-cleaning accomplishments. I appreciated the clean house, even though part of the motivation behind it was to show me how simple it is to do both childcare and housework in the same day. However, it is rumored that Nolan watched Baby Einstein four times in a row.

I am loving my part-time schedule and cherishing the days at home with Nolan. God has been giving me some neat ministry opportunities with some teen girls that have been both challenging and refreshing. Just when I begin to think that I'm not as fruitful as a part-time youth minister, He overwhelms me with a new way to be used. He's pretty good like that. Nolan has dropped down to the 90th percentile for height and weight and clocked in at exactly 18 pounds at our last appointment. We had so much fun at our church Trunk or Treat this week. Nolan, dressed as a Tootsie Roll and sitting in his bouncy seat, was the main attraction of our poorly decorated trunk. We passed out Tootsie Rolls to complement our theme, though I think they're kinda gross - sorry kids!

Here are some favorite pictures from the last two months of the cute little boy we love so dearly:







Monday, September 14, 2009

A Tribute to Pa

This past Thursday my family lost a beloved member of the Lowry clan. My grandfather "Pa" was 77 years old. He is now in heaven with our Savior Jesus and is reunited with his beautiful wife - our "Nana." Heaven is now a sweeter place because Nana and Pa are there. Pa has been waiting for this reunion for the past two years as my Nana's passing was very difficult for him. On Sunday, September 13th we gathered together in Manchester, TN to celebrate his life. My mom's side of the family is very close so time together with them was such a gift. Even though both of my Lowry grandparents are now gone, I have no doubt that our family will continue to have many a joyful time together.

I had some regret that Pa never got to meet Nolan. We visited him in the Critical Care Unit in Murfeesboro over Labor Day, but it was not safe for Nolan to enter the CCU (many serious cases of the flu). I got to squeeze Pa's hand and he squeezed back really hard. I got to tell him I loved him. Though he couldn't utter those words back that afternoon, I didn't need to hear them that day. Pa was forever telling me how much he loved me and how proud he was of me and Jeremy. Though Pa never met Nolan on this side of heaven, he felt him kick in my belly at a shower in Nashville. Pa told me Nolan needed a spanking for kicking him so hard.





My grandparents' house in Manchester is filled with so many precious memories from my childhood. Pa had a garden full of vegetables and a farm that hosted both cows and pigs. As a child I once watched a mother pig give birth to piglets and the moment was breathtaking. My cousin Katie and I used to roller skate in the basement and swing around the poles. We would make up dance shows like "Circus Celebration", put advertisement signs around the house, and charge our aunts and uncles 10 cents to come to the show. In that house I discovered a love for playing the piano and I loved listening to my Nana sing alto. On their farm I learned how to do cartwheels, watched Martins, and took many a tractor ride with Pa. Twenty of us would gather around for an intense game of Trivia Pursuit (boys vs girls) and then we'd end the evening singing old hymns. The casserole dishes at Thanksgiving and Christmas meals filled every ounce of counter space in Nana's kitchen. Those are the kind of meals I believe they'll serve in heaven. My friends that know me best can attest to my mischievous side. I inherited this trait directly from Pa. He loved a good prank!

My dad shared some neat thoughts at the funeral. For the past couple of years my Pa has been showing signs of early Alzheimer's disease. In the evenings he would get confused and ask those around him if he could go home - even though he was in his own house. They would gently tell Pa that he was home. A few minutes later, Pa would ask the same question again, "Can I go home now?" My dad pointed out in his talk that all this time we assumed Pa was just talking to us. In the quiet places of Pa's heart, God was preparing him to go to his real home.

Dad also read two verses from one of my favorite songs at the funeral. It was a fitting reminder of the hope and victory we have through Jesus Christ!

In Christ alone, my hope is found

He is my light, my strength, my song

This cornerstone, this solid ground

Firm through the fiercest drought and storm

What heights of love, what depths of peace

When fears are stilled, when strivings cease

My comforter, my all in all

Here in the love of Christ I stand


No guilt in life, no fear in death

This is the power of Christ in me

From life's first cry to final breath

Jesus commands my destiny

No power of hell, no scheme of man

Can ever pluck me from His hand

Till He returns or calls me home

Here in the power of Christ I'll stand

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Seven Weeks and Changing Fast

Here are a few photo updates of our growing boy.  Nolan is changing so fast.  Jeremy weighed him on our bathroom scale this weekend and he is already at 14 pounds....but sometimes that scale isn't always so accurate.  That's what I tell myself anyways when it's higher than I think it should be.  

Thank you Parker and Savannah for letting us borrow your swing.  
Nolan loves it so much that he swung in it until the batteries died.

Already cheering for the VOLS

Nolan has his mommy's eyes and his daddy's forehead

Another bath - we're getting better at these (much less screaming)