Tag Archives: #revyourlife

Jedidiah’s baby dedication

Well, last weekend at church, we had baby Jedidiah dedicated.  It was a special Sunday to do it, since it was also my first Mother’s Day!

Many of you may be wondering, “what is a baby dedication?”  Well, it’s similar to a baby baptism, except without the water.  I personally was raised in the Catholic church and I was baptized as an infant.  However, since I have grown up in my faith, I have come to believe that the Biblical model for baptism is as a “going public” statement of faith.  Because of this, I also chose to be baptized as an adult.  In fact, my husband and I got baptized together on Easter Sunday 5 years ago.  That was also a very special time for both of us.  Anyways, we decided to dedicate Jedidiah and hope that he too will choose to be baptized later in life.

Revolution Church has four services each weekend, one on Saturday night and three on Sunday morning.  Usually we go to the 10:00 service and then stay to serve the 11:30, but since we wanted our family to be there for this special day, we decided to serve the 11:30 and attend the 1:00 service (they are all late risers).  This turned out to be a blessing for us as we were the only family to choose this service to have our baby dedicated (the other services were packed!).  It allowed Pastor Zak to really make it more personal and special for us as a family.

He introduced us on stage and even told the church that our little Jedidiah was “Made in China” while we were up there (He thinks that is pretty funny).  Then he read Deuteronomy 6 where it talks about the blessings in store for those who love God and who follow his commandments.  “These are the commands, decrees and laws the Lord your God directed me to teach you to observe in the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess, so that you, your children and their children after them may fear the Lord your God as long as you live by keeping all his decrees and commands that I give you, and so that you may enjoy long life.”  This is important because the Shema, which I’ve written about in other posts, was the first passage of scripture the Hebrews would teach their children.  “Hear, O Israel, the Lord your God, the Lord is one.  Obey the commandments I am giving you today.  Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.  These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts.  Impress these words upon your children.  Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up…” 


Then we got to the dedication part.  Really, it should be called a parent dedication rather than a baby dedication as we are the ones promising to raise him up to love God and to obey his commandments (out of love, not out of obligation); to transfer Jedidiah’s dependence on us to a dependence on God.  And by doing this, generations to come can be changed.  We’ve always prayed that God would use Jedidiah’s life for his glory, and who knows what kind of influence he’ll have on his generation and the next?  We made this promise before God, our family and before our church.

baby dedication

Then came the church’s part.  They also dedicated themselves to come alongside us to make this commitment happen, through prayer and support.  We don’t believe that they made that commitment arbitrarily either, as this church really has become our family.  We treasure them and they treasure us, and together, we’re on a mission to start a revolution of grace in one life at a time.

After the church made their commitment, they stretched out their hands and prayed over us.  Pastor Zak prayed for:

Protection in the midst of a dark and hurting world…

Hope for his future…

Security in Christ…

Comfort when he’s hurting or lonely…

Overwhelming grace to flow through his life…


Victory in the battle…

Daily provision…

and guidance as he walks through life.

He finished with some prayers from Psalm 23, that Jedidiah would see God as his Good Shepherd.



Finally, we were given a Jesus Storybook Bible as a gift and as a tool to equip our son to go out and bring hope and joy into the world and to grow in the faith and the knowledge of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Last but not least, I pray that my son’s identity will be deeply rooted in who he is in Christ, and that this creed would be in his mind and on his heart as he grows up.

I am

This was a really special time for us as parents and we are so thankful for our church family.  Oh yeah, after the dedication, Jedidiah got kicked out of service for being too loud… how many people can say that their baby was dedicated and kicked out on the same day?!?  This kid… I’m sure God has great things in store for him.

If you want to watch the video of his dedication, here you go!  Enjoy!  #revyourlife



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Posted by on May 16, 2016 in Uncategorized


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Our little Jedi

Little Jedi 1

So our baby’s name is Jedidiah, but when we were trying to come up with nicknames, we decided on Jedi.  Of course, this all happened at the same time that all the hype was beginning for the new Star Wars movie that was coming out (shortly after his birth).  Daddy didn’t mind all the Star Wars connections, as he’s always been a big fan.  Even before Jedidiah was born, daddy used a wookie for diaper practice!

Of course the name spurred all sorts of Star Wars gifts and even a Star Wars themed baby shower (and made its way into our Thank you notes).

A little Jedi

Thank you card

We used some of the gifts not too long ago to do a little Star Wars mini-photo shoot.  We got the blanket from my college roommate and her mom, we got the Yoda wall hanging from a friend I used to teach with, and we got the light saber from one of my Bible Study gals.  Now, I realize that his light saber is red (the color of the dark side), but it was the only baby sized one we could find.  Besides, these pictures turned out SOOOOOOO cute!

PicMonkey Collage jedi

At first he was so curious, and he liked that it lights up!

Use the force

Use the force, Jedi!

Then the smiles came out!

Anyways, at first I was hesitant to get on board with all the Star Wars stuff, but I decided that there’s really nothing wrong with being a Jedi.  Here are a few reasons why.

  1. There are real forces all around us, both good and evil.  Our church did a sermon series on these forces a while back called Forces that Form your Future.  It’s totally worth checking out- if you’d like to watch these messages, they can be found at
  2. We have a real enemy.  While in Star Wars, the enemies changed… Darth Vader, Darth Maul, etc., we also have spiritual enemies that we are facing.  Ephesians 6 tells us that “Our struggle is not against flesh and blood but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of darkness in the world, and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”  Just because we cannot see our enemy doesn’t make him any less real or menacing.  I pray that my little Jedi would arm himself to stand against this enemy and against the destruction he’d love to reap in his life.
  3. This being said, we have been trained by the master and have power over our enemy.  The Jedis were trained by Yoda and learned, much like him, that they had access to special powers or forces.  As Christians, we have all the power in the Universe at our grasp.  The Bible tells us that the same power and Spirit that raised Christ from the dead, dwells in us (Romans 8:11).  Ephesians 1:19-20 says: “I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms.”  But in order to obtain this power, we must always stay connected to the Master.  John 15 commands us: “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me.  I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.”  We only have access to the “force” if we stay connected to the Creator.  I pray that Jedidiah would always remain in close communion with his Savior.
  4. We are armed for our fight against the enemy.  The Jedis had the legendary light sabers.  Like I said before, our war is not against flesh and blood but against spiritual forces.  Therefore we must have a spiritual weapon- the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.  I pray that my little one will hide God’s word deep inside his heart so that he would not stray from Him.
  5. Obi-Wan sacrificed himself for peace, much like Jesus did, he desired nothing more than the total defeat of the empire’s darkness.  Jesus gave himself up for us so that we could have an abundant life, both now and in eternity, and his death defeated darkness forever.  Obi-Wan also continued to show up and advise the other Jedis after his death, much like Jesus left us the Holy Spirit to counsel, convict, and guide us after his departure from Earth.  Jesus said: “If you love me, keep my commands.  And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you.”  My prayer for you is that you will follow Jesus with your whole heart and always be sensitive to the Spirit’s leading. 
  6. We’re never too far gone to be brought back; it’s never too late for redemption.  Vader, who began good and then turned to the “Dark Side” due to his own pride and anger, still ended up sacrificing himself for good in the end.  Although my prayer is that anger and pride will never steal you away, I pray that you would always remember that there is a God waiting for you to return to him with open arms.
  7. The small, insignificant city of Tattooine births an important hero in the saga, just as a small, insignificant city in Galilee birthed our Savior.  God likes to use those of humble beginnings to do his work.  Just look at the people he used in the Bible: Moses had a speech problem but God used him to bring his people out of slavery and oppression.  David was a scrawny little shepherd boy that slew a giant and became a great king.  Esther was just a simple girl but she saved the Jews from genocidal slaughter.  Paul was a persecutor of Christians and the church before he encountered Christ and wrote most of our New Testament scriptures.  Jesus was born in a stable even though he was the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.  He sacrificed himself to save the entire world, on a wretched Roman cross nonetheless.  God chooses to use people from humble beginnings.  I pray that you, my son, will stay humble in your spirit and let God’s incredible power flow through you.

So, my dear Jedidiah, may the force be always with you!  Keep your weapon close, stay close to the master, and don’t forget who your enemy is.  “Stay strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.  Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the Devil’s schemes.”


May the force be with you!

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Posted by on April 11, 2016 in Uncategorized


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Straining toward what is ahead…


A new year, a fresh start.  2015 is gone and 2016 is here.  Although 2015 was a great year for us, I am looking forward to this new year to try to achieve new goals and reach to new heights.

I don’t explicitly remember making “resolutions” for 2015, but here are some of the goals that I wanted to accomplish that I did:

  • Have a baby- check!  The cutest baby ever!
  • Pay off all our debt- check!  Student loans and car loans gone thanks to diligent saving and spending while we were in China!
  • Read my Bible cover to cover- check!  I think this is the 9th or 10th year I’ve read through the whole Bible in a year.  I think it’s super important for my spiritual walk and I will resolve again to do it this coming year.
  • Travel- check!  4 countries and new cities in China were visited, along with family and friends domestically.

Now, for 2016, I want to write down my goals, not only for me, but so that others (you guys) will try to keep me accountable!  Even though I already had an idea of the things I’d like to change or better this year, we had an excellent sermon this past weekend that posed some questions that I hadn’t thought about yet.  I’ll write more about those at the end of this post.  So, without further ado, here are my goals for 2016…

Physical- My overall goal here is to be healthy, both for the hubs and my bubs.  I want to juice at least 2 times a week and start running again.  Now, I don’t necessarily want to put a number amount on how many times a week I’d like to run.  It’s too easy to fail that way if there’s a busy week or a week where I’m not feeling so good.  Instead, I’d like to put forth the goal to run another half-marathon at some point this year.  That way I can have something to work towards and that should keep me accountable throughout.  I’d like to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight and size, if nothing else so that I won’t have to buy new clothes when I already have so many (that I just can’t quite squeeze into).  My main motivations for these goals is that the Bible calls my body a “temple of God,” and I want to make sure that I treat that temple well.  “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”  1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Financial- So we are in a bit of a tough spot financially.  Even though we paid off all of our debt while we were in China, our savings didn’t last as long as we thought it would upon our return to the States.  We came back to a house that needed many renovations due to damages our renters left behind that weren’t covered by their deposit (between missed rent and damages, it cost us about $8,000 dollars).  After that, we had to buy a car (we paid cash for a used car), buy stuff for our nursery (all second-hand and at a good price), pay for Jedidiah’s birth up-front (because our insurance won’t cover midwives or birth centers), pay for several vet visits for our cat (two unexpected surgeries), and live off of the rest for the four months we went between paychecks.  We thought that Trent would get his first paycheck in August, but it turned out that he didn’t get paid until the end of September.  We also thought that I would be tutoring at his school sometime during late September or early October… that didn’t happen either.  I didn’t look for a part-time job because I was anticipating this one working out.  Anyways, all that being said, our goal this year is to get back on our feet financially.  I am so thankful that we completed Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University a few years ago at Revolution Church; without it, I don’t know where we’d be!  We’ve burned through our emergency fund and have been on a super tight budget for the past few months but we’re making it work.  God always provides.  He’s blessed us through gifts and gift cards for the baby, unexpected money sent from friends and I trust that he will continue to provide for our little family.

I’d also like to find a way to contribute to our family’s financial situation in this coming year.  My goal is to start offering private Spanish (or English) tutoring and eventually start offering Spanish classes for home-school kids.  This will allow me to work during the day when Trent is at work (so that I’m not missing out on time with my husband), and be able to make my own schedule (that works around the baby).

Relational- I want to be PRESENT in my relationships.  In my marriage, I want to make sure that I put Trent first.  It’s been easy since Jedidiah was born to let him come before our marriage and the time that we spend together, but I really want to make sure that Trent and our marriage come first.  I would like for Trent and I have a date night at least once a month (even though for a while, they will have to be free dates)!

With my son, especially when I’m breastfeeding, I want to make sure I’m talking or paying attention to him. It’s so easy to scroll through Facebook for the umpteenth time or check my e-mail on my phone while he’s feeding, but I don’t want technology to come between me and my baby boy.

I’d also like to have people over to our house more often.  I don’t feel like I can commit to once a month for this one, but I would like to host at least 4 events (game nights, murder mystery parties, etc.) in this coming year.  Look for posts on these events later in 2016.

Spiritual-  I want to read through the Bible again this year.  This keeps me fed spiritually.  I also want to spend more time in prayer.  I participated in several prayer challenges this year through my church (Revolution Church) and they were really blessed times.  I want to get back to that, so I will try to use at least one breastfeeding session each day to pray- Lord knows there are lots of things to pray for (our nation, my family, missionaries, martyrs, friends, etc.).  Lastly, I’d like to memorize more scripture.  My goal is to memorize at least one verse (and its reference) a month.  I can also use Jedi’s feeding time to practice memorizing my verses.

Why am I doing this?  God’s word says: Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children,talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.  Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates, so that your days and the days of your children may be many in the land the Lord swore to give your ancestors, as many as the days that the heavens are above the earth.”  Deuteronomy 11:18-21

Intellectual-  I want to use my Spanish more often (and speak it more to Jedidiah) to stretch myself linguistically.  If I can start tutoring or offering Spanish classes, that will certainly help this goal (although it’s not exactly quantifiable).  I also want to do the things I like to do to stretch my brain- especially reading.  I’d like to read at least one book a month.  I will be keeping a log of the books I read to make sure that I get at least 12 of them in.  I also want to blog more often.  I have so many things I’d like to write about, but with a new baby, I rarely have two free hands to type (Hence this post written nearly a week into the new year).  Too bad I can’t have some sort of device that transcribes everything that I write in my brain!  I’d have a gazillion posts written by then!

“Therefore, with minds that are alert and fully sober, set your hope on the grace to be brought to you when Jesus Christ is revealed at his coming.” 1 Peter 1:13

Personal-  I want to spend at least one day a month doing something creative that I love- digital scrapbooking, blogging, editing photos, etc.


Now I’d like to add to this post the questions that our pastor posed to us: (if you’d like to watch the sermon, you can do so at:

What one thing do I desire from God?  Passion.  I used to have such a passion for people, for serving, for my time with God.  I’ve gotten away from that.  This is one thing I will pray for this year- that God would ignite this flame in my life once again.

What one thing do I lack?  Self-control.  Especially with food…  This is something I am going to specifically pray for in the coming year.

What one thing do I need to release?  Bitterness.  I have to say that I harbored (and perhaps am still harboring) some bitterness towards our renters.  The damages they left us with and the rent they didn’t pay put us in a bad place (both financially and emotionally).  What made it feel even more unjust is that we had already helped them out and shown them grace in a hard time by lowering their rent (by $300 dollars a month!  That’s $3,600 for the year!), yet they were unwilling to return the favor and simply paid what they contractually owed.  They re-nigged on their word to go back up to the agreed upon amount once she got a job, and then ended up not even paying several months of the lowered rent.  Then they had the audacity to be mad at us for giving them a “bad” reference!  The truth is, we didn’t even say anything bad about them, but were obviously honest about money, rent, and things like that.  But I think the thing that hurt us the most is that they called themselves “Christians,” yet this was the testimony that they left.  No wonder “Christians” have a bad name; they aren’t living with integrity.

However, that being said, I’ve been convicted to pray for them.  Since them leaving without a trace (no forwarding address or responses to any of my messages), a man showed up at our door looking for “the man” (who will remain nameless).  He said that “said man” had just gotten out of the hospital and he was sent to provide in-home care for him.  Another time a man and his son showed up at my door with presents for their grandkids, they were sponsored by a church.  We also received a letter to them in the mail from their son who’s in prison.  All these things tell me that they need prayer.  Jesus told us to love our enemies and pray for those who mistreat us (Luke 6:27-28), so I will try to let go of the bitterness and pray for them instead.

What one promise do I need to claim?  “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.”  Isaiah 26:3


Anyways, these are my “resolutions” for the upcoming year, what are yours?



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Posted by on January 7, 2016 in Uncategorized


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