Baby Waller has Arrived!

Family Updates

With hearts full to overflowing, Valerie and I returned home last night from the hospital, bringing our precious baby girl, Abigail Renee Waller. She weighed 7lbs, 12oz, and measured 21″ long.

First Family Picture

Abigail was born at 5:58 PM on Friday, September 6th. Valerie did an absolutely outstanding job as a first-time mom, working through about eighteen hours of active labor with a calm and stability that amazed the midwife and hospital staff.

Thank you so much to each one that was praying for us though these incredible hours. Never in my life have I gone through three days with so little sleep, but the grace of God sustained us each step of the way.

I look forward to sharing more of the specifics in how the Lord used your prayers, but first I wanted to share an initial post to let you know of Abigail’s safe arrival, and that Mom and baby (and Daddy) are all doing very well and making a speedy recovery. Valerie’s mother is staying with us for several days, allowing us a little more rest as we recover from the big event and adjust to life as a family of three!  🙂

 

 

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Labor Day Approaching

Family Updates

On Monday our nation will celebrate our annual Labor Day holiday, a day usually marked by picnics and barbeques as American families enjoy one last long weekend before settling in to school schedules at the end of summer.

Getting Close!Valerie and I are anticipating another “labor day” of far greater significance for our family, and yet with a much less predictable calendar date! Our little one is due any time now, and we are eagerly looking forward to welcoming this new member of our family into the world.  🙂

These recent days have given me a new appreciation for the scriptures that speak of the Lord’s return. “But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.” — Matthew 24:36

We don’t know the day or the hour that baby will come, but when that hour comes, we had better be ready!  🙂 We have our bags packed, a folder with all of our important papers, and a full tank of gas in our car. Rain or shine, day or night, we are ready for the trip to the hospital for baby’s birth.

What a reminder of how important it is that we be ready for the Lord’s return! Whether the Lord comes back in our lifetime, or whether death ushers us into His presence, all of us will one day face eternity. God has graciously offered the substitutionary death of Jesus Christ as the payment for the just penalty we owe for our sin, but only in this life will we have the opportunity to humbly accept this free gift. Are you ready for that day?

Attending birthing classes has been a fun adventure for Valerie and me. Although we are both from large families, it feels quite different when you are the parents. 🙂 I have gained a new appreciation for the advances of technology, and an increasing awe for the incredible way that God has designed our bodies for the natural childbirth process.

As we look forward to our “labor day”, we would be grateful for your prayers for a safe and healthy delivery! We have made the preparations that we can, but ultimately trust the Lord to carry us through the grand adventure before us!

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The Blessing of the Lord

Family Updates

Rejoicing Together

On March 3rd Valerie and I celebrated our first anniversary, closing a year filled with all the joy and blessings of two lives being molded together with an ever-deepening fellowship and love for each other. What a priceless experience following many years of waiting and trusting God for His best!

We both share the experience of having our faith tested in the latter end of our single years as we tried to focus on putting the Lord first in our lives, and trusting Him to accomplish His best in each area of our lives, including the area of marriage.

In Matthew 6, Jesus teaches that if we seek first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness, that all these things will be added unto us. In the preceding verses, Jesus points out that all over the world, people are seeking after the necessities of life. Finances, food, and clothing are certainly needful, but as Christians, we have a Father that cares for us and delights to provide for His children.

If God cares about the little things in our lives like food and clothing, how much more does He want for us to have His best in the area of a life partner! “Houses and riches are the inheritance of fathers”, Proverbs tells us, “but a prudent wife is from the Lord.” Probably no other relationship in this life will have a greater impact upon our life choices than that of our spouse. I believe that God has given me His very best in Valerie, and it has been my delight over this past year to spend time with this precious gift from the Lord.

“The blessing of the LORD, it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it.”
— Proverbs 10:22

Does this mean that if you focus on loving the Lord with all your heart and seeking Him first, that you can be sure to have the marriage of your dreams? No, not necessarily. You can take God at His Word that all these things will be added unto you, but God knows what is best, and whether marriage is part of His very best for your life. A loving marriage might be our sincere prayer, but we are wise to hold our dreams with open hands so that God is free to bring His own answer in His perfect time.

I certainly had not anticipated reaching the age of 31 before I was married, but I would not trade the fruit of the lessons God had for me in those faith-building years of preparation and growth. Valerie and I have often commented to one another that we would not be enjoying the richness and fulness of what we have today, had it not been for some of those trying lessons and seasons of personal growth in our single years. God truly does all things well!

Family PictureBut lessons in life and faith don’t end when you get married, as all of you married ones know!  🙂  One of the lessons that God has taken us through in this past year was in the area of patience and trust regarding children. Both Valerie and I were eagerly looking forward to the potential of children, but month after month passed with no signs of a little one.

Our prayers continued as we watched all five of our married siblings rejoice in the news of a baby on the way. David & Priscilla were married a month before us, and just had their first in March of this year. Valerie’s brother Joe was married two weeks after us, and they had their first in January. We were only too willing to “join the club”, but could do little but pray and trust the Lord for His best.

I realize that many couples try for years to have children, and some never have this opportunity, so nine months may seem like a comparatively short time to wait, but for us the test of patience and trust was very real as we reached the end of 2012. It was with no little joy in early January that Valerie shared with me the exciting news that the Lord had blessed us with a little one!  🙂

All of this was an exciting new adventure for us, although each being the oldest of ten children, we had some understanding of caring for little ones. Our parents were of course thrilled with the news, and shared much valuable advice for us as we stepped into this new season of life. Never have I been more thankful for my mother taking the time in those early years to teach me how to cook and clean and care for a home!

Valerie did experience some morning sickness as is typical during the first three months, but this was thankfully more mild than what many go through. She is doing very well, and our little one continues to grow and develop. Our midwife reports that baby is right on target for development, with a due date at the very end of August.

Baby WallerAbout two weeks ago we had our ultrasound. What an incredible experience to see our little one for the first time! (No, we didn’t find out the gender, we are leaving that as a surprise.) As one working in the field of technology, I was fascinated by the advances in this arena.

Far from the little profile picture my parents could see when I was a baby, our doctor could show us the baby’s heart beating, details of the spine, and just about every part of our little one’s developing body. “Everything looks perfect!” was the doctor’s happy report.

Above is a picture that the doctor graciously allowed me to take during the ultrasound. We are rejoicing in the blessing of this little one!

 “Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.”
— Psalm 127:3

 

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Wedding Pictures

Wedding

On Thursday this week we received our final set of wedding pictures, and wanted to share a few of them on our website.

Special thanks to Jon and Vicky from LeCape Studios for their photography services, and to Barak Lundberg and Sarah Pardee for their additional contributions.

A very special day, and one that will be long remembered!!

Wedding Prep

Getting ready for the big event! - With a few fun pictures added for variety.

Wedding Ceremony

Held at Marquette Manor Baptist Church, with about 500 in attendance.

Wedding Reception

A beautiful reception with light refreshments followed by a surprise...

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Happily Married

Uncategorized

Today marks one month from our wedding day, and Valerie and I find ourselves continually rejoicing in the Lord’s goodness in leading us together. We have been so abundantly blessed in this joyous new season of life. Our hearts are filled with gratitude for the many that joined us to celebrate our wedding day, and still others that blessed us from afar with heartfelt prayers, loving notes, and thoughtful gifts.

We look forward to posting more wedding pictures in the days to come, but wanted to take the opportunity on our one-month anniversary to express our gratefulness to each one that had a part in our special day on March 3rd.

What a special joy to receive God’s best in His perfect time! It has been a joy worth waiting for!

 

“Praise ye the Lord. O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good: for his mercy endureth forever. Who can utter the mighty acts of the Lord? who can show forth all his praise?”
   – Psalm 106:2

 

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Live Video Stream

Wedding

We are making arrangements to have a live video stream of our wedding available on our website joyfullservice.com. To view the live wedding video, please visit this website on Saturday, March 3rd, at about 1:00 PM. We plan to begin streaming the audio portion shortly before the ceremony begins at 1:30 PM.

For those that might not be able to view the wedding live, we also plan to make the recorded video available here for viewing after the wedding.

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