A Different Kind of Update!
For those of you who know much about us, you understand the significance of January 30-31 every year. We are actually writing this update on Sunday, January 31 after a wonderful but long day of celebration. For those of you who are reading this and wondering what we are talking about, let us fill you in. Chrissie’s birthday is January 30. What a blessing to have another year together! January 31 is the anniversary of our daughter, Sadie Marie Redding, going home to be with Our Lord Jesus. This year marked nine years since Sadie went to heaven. NINE YEARS! We can’t believe it! So, for the past nine years, we have gathered as a family every January 31, to celebrate Sadie’s life AND reevaluate our lives in light of God’s call. However, this year is the very first year that our family has not been able to be together physically. We are waiting for the boys to get settled for the night and we plan to Skype our celebration! Anyway, we want to publically thank you all for your calls, texts, email, and cards of encouragement! Please know that we love you all and are so blessed by your love for us!
So what does this have to do with our monthly update? This website is named “Lifesong” after Sadie’s life. To the left you will see a picture of Sadie’s tomb stone. Although the picture is not very clear, you can see that it is a broken heart, and inscribed on that heart are the words to the song, Lifesong, written by Mark Hall. At the bottom of the right side you see Sadie’s signature. Her life desire was for her “Lifesong” to Sing to the glory of King Jesus! That’s our desire as well. So, as you read our monthly updates and hear all the amazing things God is doing in our lives, please know this is simply King Jesus singing through us to let the world know of His Grace! We want this month’s newsletter to be a challenge to you all. Maybe you are reading this and you realize that your family is not taking life as seriously as you should. Maybe you are reading this and you realize that you are not allowing your lifesong to sing for Jesus. Maybe you are reading this and there is tension in your home, but you have not done anything to resolve it. STOP! Right now is all we have! Stop reading this post and go to your family right now. Look to the right and you will see the other side of Sadie’s tombstone. The words inscribed are the words to the poem, “The Broken Chain.” At the bottom our family signed our names. One day our family will be together again in heaven, but down here, we are still missing one of our family members. We’re thankful that God helped us “SING” together. Don’t live with regrets! If God has used “our day” to stir you towards Him, we would love to hear from you at either email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. Please send us a note!
We had many amazing things happen during the month of January, but one of the greatest was our Annual Orientation. We had around 115 in attendance, and what a great meeting! Michael Crawford, State Director of Missions, set the tone for the entire day by giving the vision of where we are going in 2016… “Every Church Planter Coached and Cared.” We were able to share the vision of the coaching structure and introduce the planters to many of our coaches that day. Since that time, we have been working hard on getting all of our planters paired with a coach. We’re excited to say that that list will go out tomorrow!!!
By the way, if you notice the “WE” to all of our statements talking about work, you should go back to last month’s newsletter and ask, “I wonder how Chrissie did with helping at the State Convention?” We’re glad you asked! She is doing an amazing job (Can you hear the cheers in the background?)! She has become pro on 695, and that is no easy task! She has been such a blessing to Marc in getting all of the new plans in place. Thank you all for your prayers… God has done amazing things through this opportunity. By the way…Chrissie has been asked to work through February as well, so we’ll give you an update later on.
Blizzard 2016…we couldn’t leave that out!
For those of you who know Marc very well, you know that he loves snow! Now everyone up here in Baltimore is asking, “So, do you STILL love snow?” Of course Marc’s answer is YES! Although the official amount recorded for our region was 29.2″, we only measured just over 26″ in our yard. Either way, WOW…we had a bunch of snow! We are writing this one week after the big blizzard and we still have plenty of snow. It’s wonderful! “Though your sins be like scarlet, they shall be as white as SNOW!” (Isaiah 1:18) Anyway, we hope you enjoy the video. Although this may not seem “news worthy,” it was definitely a highlight of our month! We broke the record!!!
So, as we begin all of our new structure with all of our church planters, please keep praying! We are so thankful for all of you who are helping us carry the good news to so many! Pray for our planters and their families! Pray for our coaches and leaders as they pour themselves into others. Pray for lostness to be pushed back as lost souls are brought to understand the Amazing Grace of Our King! We love you all…..