- We kicked off the year by moving two states away and living with our brother Ben. No matter how generous and chill a person is, it isn't easy to live with anyone once you are married. Still, Ben has made this a great experience!
- We looked for a church and found one; which felt like we never left. Diving into ministry at Bethel has been one of our greatest pleasures this year.
- Katie held a hand full of photo shoots and got a good start, gaining a lot of knowledge, on the road to starting her own photography business.
- God unexpectedly blessed us with another pregnancy, we loved our son for the short while that we had him. Then in late November, for reasons beyond our ability to concieve, Noah passed away. This event was marked deeply with the love of others pouring into our hurting hearts! We were irreversably changed through Noah's death, but because of God's infinite grace and the love of His family, we have been changed for the better!
- We knew the joy of having our first child birthday party! Eden's birthday was great enough to overshadow the 18 hour car ride with her first ear infection! It was most enjoyable to watch Eden's face light up as we sang her happy birthday... she just knew it was all about her (a quality we may regret installing into her years down the road)!
- Finally, we were offered, and accepted, a part time position as the Director of Youth at Bethel Baptist Church in Fruitport MI. This is a wonderful, part time opportunity for us to minister to the students in Fruitport, as well as gain some experience which should aid him in his desire to do full time ministry. The position begins January 1st, but Mark will be maintaining his current employment at Hackley Hospital as our family's primary income.
We are excited about this opportunity but we know that ministry is as stressful as it is rewarding. We ask that you keep us in prayer as we begin this new journey. It is unspeakable how much we appreciate the prayers and support of those who care for us. If God is not on our side, then we will be completely defeated; but if God is for us, who can stand against us?
That serves as a small sampling size of what transpired in Team Worth this year. The overarching theme is undoubtedly God's faithfulness, for we faced some tough circumstances, but we are entering 2013 stronger and more united than ever!
As we close up this year, we wanted to also give you the final report on our 2012 goals, as depressing as this report will be. We do consider it a small victory that we can even remember our goals at the end of the year!
- Run a 5k together
- This was just flat out a fail. We almost never jogged together (maybe twice together all year). We sort of gave up on the goal when we got pregnant...
- Read 2 Parenting Books Together
- This also is a mega fail, but we grew from trying. We learned that we are too busy and love relaxing when we do get time together too much to actually read any book all the way through out loud together. Had we allowed ourselves to read separately, we likely would have finished at least one book. Next year, our reading goal will be carried out separately.
- Pray Together 5 Nights a Week
- If we gave you the stats on how rarely we actually prayed out loud together 5 nights a week, you would easily chalk this up as a fail... and to some degree we do. But, for the couple of months that we did pray together often, it was one of the best experiences of our marriage! Praying together brought our united focus back to God, it lowered our selfishness, and it encouraged our personal relationships with Him! Because of those great benefits, even if only for two months, we call this a partial success.
- Moderate Success
- Update Our Family Blog Twice a Month
- Finally we come to a goal which has been (other than one month) fully successful! We have thoroughly enjoyed updating our blog with whatever is going on in our lives and we hope you have enjoyed reading it. We feel as though we have 3 homes and only live in one of them, so we want to continue to blog so that those who love us from afar can keep up with us.
- Get Actively Involved in a Local Church Ministry
- As has been previously stated, we (re)joined Bethel Baptist Church and are now very active in the youth, music, and nursery ministries! Next year Mark will actually be on staff at Bethel and we are thrilled to start that new part of our journey.
So in the end, we completed around 40 to 50 % of our 2012 Team Worth goals. Stop on by the blog on January 1st and we will reveal our 5 2013 Goals, one of which we will select from suggestions given to us by our friends (so if you have a goal suggestion, let us know by commenting below or hit us up on facebook).
From Team Worth to all of those who read this blog and support us, we thank you from our hearts and we love you! We would love to hear about your 2012!