monday….

Posted by Tori on Oct 3, 2011 in family.

I have been loving this cooler weather! This is without a doubt my favorite time of year! It is also football season, which is my husband’s favorite time of year. We have had tons of fun with UGA football, but I am happy to have a break from traveling for the next few weeks. We got back home on Sunday and this morning, my laundry room was filled with mountains of laundry…which somehow actually got washed, folded, and mostly put away today. Another miracle of the day…the kids and I actually napped at the same time…and dinner was ready early….and the kids are headed to bed early….how did that happen?! I am hoping it doesn’t mean that they are all planning to wake up at 3 a.m. Tuesday mornings, I go to a women’s Bible study, which is definitely the highlight of my week. It is so refreshing to set aside the stresses of the day to fellowship with, pray with, and study God’s Word with such a wonderful group of sisters. Unfortunately, as of right now, I have not accomplished the week’s homework…we will see if I can get that done within the next 13 hours…

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overdue for an update.

Posted by Tori on Sep 29, 2011 in family.

The last few months have been so busy, and I took a long break from the blog…but now it’s time to pick it back up. I do believe that an update is in order.

The twins are nearly seven months old now and growing like crazy! They learn new things everyday and are just so much fun!

Ayden is 20 months now…the big 0-2 is approaching way too fast! His vocabulary is expanding everyday. He has begun preschool one day a week at PCA and is loving it so very much!

William and I have been going to the UGA home games this season and are really enjoying those little dates.

Today my mom is here and we are going to take the kids for a shopping trip in search of some Fall weather clothes. Is so nice having her here and I am looking forward to the time with her.

Tomorrow when Ayden finishes at PCA we will travel to GA for the weekend. Ayden is planning to go to his first carnival with his grandmother…so I’m sure there will be many fun pictures and stories to report.

This morning I have been reading Psalm 63. Verses 6-8 say, “When I remember you on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches, For You have been my help, And in the shadow of Your wings I sing for joy. My soul clings to You; Your right hand upholds me.” His provision for me is so excellent and undeserved. My soul is clinging to Him.

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The Gospel

Posted by Tori on Jul 26, 2011 in a good word., family.

In our bulletin at ECBC, there is normally a prayer listed to use in preparation for worship. A few weeks back, it said the following:

“Almighty God, we are thankful that your mercy is higher than the heavens, wider than our wanderings, deeper than all our sin. Forgive our frivolous attitude toward the Gospel, toward life itself, our callousness toward suffering, our envy of those who have more than we have, our obsession with creating a life of constant pleasure, our indifference to the treasures of heaven, our neglect of your wise and gracious law. Help us to live in the joy of repentance, to change our way of life, so that we may desire what is good, love what is good, love what you love and do what you command, through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (emphasis mine)

As I was reading over this it struck me, as it has been for the last few months, but this time in a much more in your face sorta way.  I started having questions run through my mind like Why do we envy? What is my obsession? Why a life a pleasure in worldly things? Do I have a frivolous attitude toward the Gospel?

A few weeks ago, Tori and I decided to share the responsibilities of posting. This is my first attempt. Tori said recently that God has been changing our hearts and igniting passions (or re-igniting them as the case may be). This prayer really made me examine myself. I did have a frivolous attitude toward the glorious Gospel. I had no passion to share my faith with any one. How could I really say that I loved people and not care about their life in relation to eternity? The short answer was I didn’t. Why was this? Well, it comes from the next two statements. I envied those who had more and I was obsessed with having a life of pleasure.

We moved to Charleston a little over two and a half years ago. Why did we move?  Answer: Money. I took a job that was paying a considerable amount more than I was making in Columbia. The raise I received for coming down here secured me to make more than double what I was making working at CIU after graduation. Tori and I were just married and it seemed like a good thing to do. It also meant that we would not want for anything. Since then, nearly every decision that we made was through the lens of security for our family and keeping up with the Jones’s.

Recently, we  have felt God calling us in a different direction. I took a job in March that we thought would lead us in that direction (overseas missions). We wanted to go with the IMB for what we thought were valid reasons. Herein lies the problem the reasons we wanted to go with them were the same that we had been chasing for the last few years; security in finances (we didn’t have to raise support), and obsession with a life of pleasure (we didn’t have the stress of putting full faith in His promise). This led us to a church (that we love by the way) and the story from there is all God’s providence. We started working with the youth ministry and a small campus close to our house. We were there for a few months and then felt God calling us to something different.

The road that was started with that calling is where we are now and our lives will never be the same. We started working with the college ministry and are now able to say that if raising support is what God has for us then we are ready. I have been able to meet with the college pastor and our time is such a blessing. He is very wise and has many years of experience. I feel like every time I am around him I grow a little (or a lot) in my faith. I am looking forward to the experience that we will have as we partner with him in ministry.

Last weekend, I went on a trip with the college ministry to check out a ministry called Campus Outreach. I had an amazing time and God really showed up. Not only did I develop some great relationships, but I was also able to go out with college students to share our faith. This is where the change is beginning for us.

Proverbs 23:4-5 Do not weary yourself to gain wealth, Cease from your consideration of it. When you set your eyes on it, it is gone. For wealth certainly makes itself wings like an eagle that flies toward the heavens.

I read this while on the CO trip. Along with the prayer at the top, my life cannot be the same. I am determined to seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness. No longer will I chase after money. I pray that I will no longer envy what others have, be obsessed with a life of pleasure, and most of all may I never again have a frivolous attitude toward the Gospel. I don’t know where our family will be in the days to come. But, what I do know is that we are chasing after the Lord hard and we are willing to go wherever, whenever, and however He asks us to even if it means sharing our faith in a place that is not pleasurable or the envy of the world.

wm

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let’s start the insanity.

Posted by Tori on Apr 16, 2011 in family.


Change has come! Everything in my life is different now. It’s a lot crazier. I sleep a lot less. I have a lot less time to myself. I drink a lot more caffeine. But, despite all that…it’s so much more fun! I love a lot more. I pray a lot more. I laugh a lot more. I appreciate the little things a lot more.

I am so in love with my three little miracles.

Today, we are traveling…crazy, I know. Earlier this week, we loaded up all the babes and practically everything we own and headed down to Georgia for some much needed time with family and a change of scenery. At first, the thought of all that packing and the logistics of a 5 hour car trip with a 15 month old and two 6 week olds overwhelmed me…but I have an incredible husband. So, it really wasn’t all that hard to organize, and the car ride was actually pleasant. We only stopped once for lunch to feed everyone. Right now, my babes are in excellent hands and I am on my way to Athens with my husband and brother-in-law. We’re going to watch the G-day spring football game. But, really I’m going so that I can enjoy my Starbucks and some adult conversation for a few hours without having to change diapers or wipe noses.

I have learned a lot during the past 6 weeks! I’m probably a different person to some degree…but that’s the way it should be. I am thankful for the ways the Lord rocks my world and refuses to let me get bored with life and continually refines my character. It’s definitely not always easy, nor fun, but extremely worth it. It will take more than one blog post to catch you up and to process all this change, but let’s just begin scratching the surface.

Last weekend, my incredible husband (whom I am nominating for father of the year), volunteered to stay home with our little ones while I attended a ladies’ retreat at church. What a blessing! Not just to get out of the house and spend a few hours with some other women, but also to have a few hours devoted to studying God’s Word with them. One comment that the speaker made was, “You weren’t made to just survive this world; you were made to change it.” Of course we were. But, it was a nice reminder to a mom who hadn’t seen much of the world outside of her own house in what seemed like weeks on end, and who spends most of her time changing dirty diapers and wiping spit up. Even though it sometimes felt like I was just surviving the days staying at home by myself with the kids, it was a great reminder of the purpose God has called me to and just how temporary these days really are.

Aside from my role as a wife to William, being a mother is the greatest role that God has called me to play in life. I do not take it lightly. I love how the Lord uses these roles as a part of the greater calling I have received. I am fully aware that, at any point, these roles can be snatched from me. As long as I am drawing breath, I am to be about His glory and bringing people to Him. This is what my life is to be about and I am so thankful for the ways that my roles as a wife and a mother allow me to accomplish this, along with the other roles and platforms He has given me.

Perspective is a beautiful thing. The Lord is so good. Yes, it’s hard. No, it’s not always pretty. But it is so satisfying to reside in His JOY and trust Him to make something beautiful out of the mess.



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lost in wonder, love, and praise.

Posted by Tori on Jan 12, 2011 in a good word., ayden., family.

www.katiemcgeephotography.com

Ayden is such a precious, undeserved gift! He is so full of JOY. There are so many things I love about him. I love how the Lord teaches me so much through him, even through one of his expressions captured in a photograph. (Thanks, Katie, for the amazing photo!!) I love the wonder, awe, excitement, and innocence that is painted all over his sweet face.

William and I have decided to take the next few weeks to intensify our focus on the Lord and what He has purposed for our family. It’s no secret that there is a lot of change headed our way. Good change…and a lot of it! I am praying for the Lord to completely captivate my soul, making me incapable of looking in any other direction. We serve such an incomprehensible God. We cannot taste even a glimpse of His glory without being forever altered. Over the next few weeks, I want my expression to look at lot like Ayden’s in this picture…

…full of wonder at the depth of His character and glory; full of excitement at what He has for us; full of abiding joy in His Spirit; and full of a childlike freedom and eagerness to follow Him wherever He leads.



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remaining faithful in the land between.

Posted by Tori on Dec 12, 2010 in a good word., family.

I love the unity that Christ has established within the church. He designed us to live in community with one another, having unity and fellowship with Himself and with the church. I am always blessed by time spent with His body. This morning I was so encouraged by His Word. As a church, we reflected on “Finding God in the Land Between.” What should we do and what should we remember during the period of waiting between God giving a promise and God fulfilling that promise? We remembered Simeon. The Holy Spirit had revealed to him that he would not see death before he had seen the Christ. Luke tells us that he was “righteous and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon Him” (Luke 2:25, ESV). This man’s testimony is one of faithfulness and obedience in his waiting on the Lord.

The time in between chapters of our lives is an opportunity for incredible growth and nearness to God. The period of waiting does not have to be a time of confusion, nor does it need to feel like stagnation. God grows us in the land between. He shapes our perspective and prepares us for what is to come. Often, the fulfillment of the promise looks very different than what we thought it might when the promise was given. And always, it is much better.

As we wait, we must remain faithful to what we know the Lord has called us to do right now. We must choose to believe God. It is vital that we remain focused on the growth and the work He is accomplishing now in our waiting. We cannot be so preoccupied with whatever we think is next that we become spiritually or mentally absent in the place He has us now. Also, in discerning His leading, we must be careful not to jump ahead of His timing and to remember that He always acts in consistency with His character and His Word. He is to be our focus, not other people and not our circumstances. Our hearts must be alert to the Holy Sprit at work in us. We don’t know how the Lord will choose to fulfill His promise to us, but we can be sure that it will far surpass anything we could dream up. He is the one who supplies the competency for ministry and nothing is too big for Him.

The season that we find ourselves in as a family feels like this time of waiting. There is a call and a promise, but we are yet to experience the fulfillment. Lord, make us faithful in the land between. We are yours. We have heard your Word and we believe you. May our testimony be like Simeon’s. Thank you for your relentless love that is beyond our comprehension.

Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.
Ephesians 3:20-21


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the wait is over.

Posted by Tori on Nov 5, 2010 in family.

Today almost feels like Christmas!  I have been waiting (somewhat impatiently) to find out the gender of our precious twins – so excited to find out what the Lord is knitting together.  Today was the day!  My ultrasound this afternoon revealed that we are expecting identical little GIRLS!  We are so happy!  I am pleased that I will no longer be outnumbered in my family!  The Lord is so good and we are so incredibly thankful!! The ultrasound tech was so wonderful, and sent us home with over 100 pictures!  I will put some up soon!!

PSALM 145:1-7

I will exalt you, my God the King; I will praise your name for ever and ever.

Every day I will praise you and extol your name for ever and ever.

Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom.

One generation will commend your works to another; they will tell of your mighty acts.

They will speak of the glorious splendor of your majesty, and I will meditate on your wonderful works.

They will tell of the power of your awesome works, and I will proclaim your great deeds.

They will celebrate your abundant goodness and joyfully sing of your righteousness.

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good times.

Posted by Tori on Nov 2, 2010 in family.

This past weekend, we went to St. Simons to spend time with family and also to go to the UGA/UF game in Jacksonville. It was such a great weekend! Ayden got to spend Saturday with his grandmother (I think she has settled on the name Mimi, but it hasn’t stuck yet…) and great-grandparents, while William and I enjoyed a date in Jacksonville!

The day started with a soy cinnamon dolce latte from Starbucks (my new favorite drink) and some cinnamon swirl coffee cake…it was bound to be a great day with a start like that! We got into Jacksonville early enough to secure a spectacular parking spot. Then we headed downtown to the Landing for some shopping and food until game time.

We had a great time at the game…even though the Dawgs couldn’t pull it off. We ended the day with a late dinner at Steak N Shake…which was incredible since I hadn’t been to one of those since college!

Sunday, Ayden donned his Bulldog costume for Halloween! He had the best time!!

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sweet saturdays.

Posted by Tori on Oct 23, 2010 in family.

Fall is my absolute favorite time of year! (Winter is a close second.) I love football season. It has been so great to have season tickets to the UGA games in Athens this year. Ayden loves spending time with his grandparents, and it is so nice to have a date with William. But, while it is always fun, it isn’t always restful. Today is different! Today we are all home as a family. I love days like this. The weather is beautiful and we can spend the day doing whatever we want! Today consisted of enjoying the gorgeous weather, making the house smell amazing by cooking some of our Fall favorites, watching football, and laughing and playing with our sweet Ayden. Only a trip to Starbucks could have made it any more complete. Now, things are quiet. Ayden is sleeping, and William and I are enjoying UGA’s current lead over UK. A restful Saturday is always a good thing! Next weekend will be filled with fun and travel again, but for now, there’s no place like home.

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new every morning.

Posted by Tori on Oct 19, 2010 in family.

My college years were without a doubt the most fun years of my life. I loved being in school full-time, and I grew so much during those years. I especially loved Fall mornings when I did not have a class. I would make myself a cup of coffee, go for a walk, and then grab a good book and curl up in front of the window and just get lost for a few moments. Mornings like that don’t really happen for me anymore. However, Fall mornings like this one don’t really compare. Now I enjoy my coffee, and my walk, and my book…with my precious family. I have the joy of looking into my son’s face across the table from me, and I thank the Lord each day for this sweet time in our lives. His mercies are new EVERY morning! What new mercies has He shown you this morning?

Lamentations 3:22-24
The Lord ’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease,
For His compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness.
“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
“Therefore I have hope in Him.”

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