Browsing the archives for the Family Updates category

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!

Print This Post Print This Post

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

 

Print This Post Print This Post

Merry Christmas!

Family Updates

The year 2012 has been a year of “firsts” for us.

As most of you know, we were married on March 3rd of this year and are blessed to report that each new day just gets better and better.  🙂  As a result of our wedding came many “firsts” — such as our first kiss, our first trip with just the two of us, and our first home.

God has blessed us with a beautiful and spacious apartment in a quiet part of Darien, IL, just minutes from work, church, and Aldi — our favorite place to shop.  The neighbors are quiet and friendly and the view is lovely.  We even have a nice park in our “backyard” which is nice when little friends come to visit.

During our engagement, the Lord provided us with our first few pieces of furniture through friends at church and local Craigslist listings.  The Lord even provided us with a really nice mattress for our bed at an incredible discount!  So, as a result, we started our home with a couch, a desk, a bed, and a dining room set as our first pieces of furniture.  Over the last nine months, the Lord has seen fit to fill in the “missing pieces” and our home is now fully furnished and ready for visitors like you…even on short notice.  🙂

Our first trip as a married couple (after our honeymoon, of course) was to Wisconsin for the wedding of Valerie’s younger brother.  It has been a busy year of weddings for us as we have attended well over half a dozen of them together, including the weddings of three of our own siblings.  It has been neat to hear the stories of so many other young couples and how God has brought them together.

This summer, we enjoyed having our first overnight guests and have truly enjoyed opening our home to family and friends and sharing the gift of hospitality.

Also this summer, Valerie enjoyed her first opportunity to visit the Waller farms as well as her first Waller family reunion (well, technically it was a Perhai family reunion but that’s part of the Waller extended family).

In September, Adam had his first business trip after the wedding…and Valerie was privileged to get to go along too!  🙂

This fall, we have even been able to work on our first web development project together which has been a lot of fun.  It has been so neat to see how much our interests overlap and yet our personal areas of gifting complement each other’s weaknesses!

We just finished celebrating our first Thanksgiving together as a married couple and are greatly looking forward to our first Christmas together as well.  We have been truly blessed in this our first year of marriage.  While we don’t know exactly what this next year holds, we look forward to it in eager anticipation, knowing that our loving Heavenly Father delights to give us His best.

Even as we look back on that first Christmas night, we see God giving mankind the gift of His very best when He sent His very own Son — His only Son — to come to this earth to live, to die, and to rise again so that our sins could be eternally forgiven and we could live with Him in heaven as His adopted children.

Whether this next year is a year of “firsts” or “lasts” or just the normal “status quo” for you, God’s gift is still available to you for He longs to receive you as His child and pour out His blessings upon you as well.

As we exchange gifts with one another and engage in the many holiday festivities, may we be ever mindful of God’s greatest gift to us — His Son, Jesus Christ.

Merry Christmas and God bless you in the coming year!

~ Adam & Valerie Waller

Print This Post Print This Post

Special Memories

Family Updates

It was the big night, the one for which they (well, Valerie anyway) had been waiting for several weeks.  Work was done for the day, dinner had been eaten and cleaned up, and the calendar had been kept clear.  With a batch of fresh gingersnaps just out of the oven and some music of the season playing in the background, it was time to begin.

“Begin what?” you say?  I guess I did leave out that important detail, didn’t I?  🙂

It was time to decorate the apartment for Christmas…their first Christmas together as a married couple in their own home.  🙂  While Valerie has helped to decorate the family home for years, she was really looking forward to decorating her little apartment this year and making special memories with her wonderful husband, Adam.

Out came the boxes with the Christmas decorations and the fun began.  They knew they didn’t have a lot to work with but the didn’t really know what exactly they did have.  They opened the boxes and began discovering together some old things made new by their new position in life and some new things received last year to be used for their first Christmas together.

One thing they had realized ahead of time was that, though they had a handful of ornaments, they didn’t have a Christmas tree.  They had done some looking but most of the trees were too big for their little apartment and even the little ones were so expensive.  They were still hoping for a tree of some sort but nothing had seemed just right yet.  Then, as Adam was pulling things out of the boxes, inspiration struck.

“Honey, did you already have something in mind for this piece of garland here?” he asked.

“No,” said Valerie, “I hadn’t really thought about it yet.”

“Would you mind if I used it for something then?”

“Go ahead.” she replied.  “What did you have in mind?”

With a smile on his face and a twinkle in his eye, Adam replied, “A Christmas tree!”  He showed Valerie a very quick sample of what he had in mind and then got right to work.

Meanwhile, Valerie continued pulling out the few other little things she had stored away, including the ornaments that would now have a place to hang.

The one thing Valerie wasn’t so sure about was the wreath on their door.  It was so summery but she didn’t really have anything to replace it with…or so she thought.  As she rummaged through her boxes looking for something else, she was reminded that she had an old straw base for making a wreath.  With some extra tulle and flowers from their wedding, she got to work on making a new wreath while Adam finished working on making their tree.

Both finished about the same time and stood back to admire each other’s new “masterpieces”.  They pulled out a string of lights and then added their handful of ornaments…just exactly the right amount for their little tree.

Remember those special memories Valerie was looking forward to making that night?  Well, that little tree will always be one of them.  🙂

 

Print This Post Print This Post

Abundantly Blessed

Family Updates

With four married children in Valerie’s family now, it was a special treat to be able to celebrate Thanksgiving with her entire family all in one place this year.  At least two of the ten children are headed for the mission field in the years to come so opportunities to be all together like this may be few and far between.  In fact, we actually waited until Friday to celebrate so that everyone could be there…including the latest edition, Cody Marshall Barta, born just that week!

In preparation for our time together, Mom Mueller sent out a little survey to ascertain everyone’s favorite dishes for our Thanksgiving feast as well as some of their favorite Thanksgiving memories and/or traditions — the things that “make it Thanksgiving” to each one.

She felt this would be especially important and helpful since we added several new family members this year and were starting some new family traditions.  After all, who wants to make something only to find out no one in the current gathering even likes it?

It was quite fun to see the results come in and hear the feedback from the different ones.  While there was a good bit of variety in the food favorites, everybody seemed to agree about their favorite memories.  We all said that the thing that “makes it Thanksgiving” to us is the time to relax together and “be family” and, one way or another, to spend time reflecting on and sharing the many, many blessings of the Lord upon our lives over the past year.

As we took time as a couple to reflect on what God has done for us, we were again amazed and overwhelmed by the goodness of our loving Heavenly Father Who has poured out His blessings upon us in abundance.  Just last November, we were engaged, then married in March, and already we will be celebrating nine months of marriage this next week!  Time has flown by so quickly and our relationship just continues to grow sweeter and sweeter every day.

We have seen God provide a wonderful home for us and everything we need (and more) to keep it furnished and functioning well.  We’ve been blessed to be able to host friends and family in our home — for a visit, for a meal, and some even for an overnight stay.  We have experienced very little sickness and have had good health overall.

God has blessed Adam with a steady flow of work and even given Valerie some fun short-term projects to do on the side from time to time.  We have both enjoyed being involved in ministry at our church.

In truth, the list could go on and on.  Not every day has been perfect and free from care or concern but we have been richly blessed!

Yet, even when there is struggle or uncertainty about the future, our God still holds us close as His children and reminds us that we are blessed even in those days for it is then that we draw closer to Him.  This is a good reminder as we move into the Christmas season and look ahead to what God may have for us in the coming year.  We may not know what the future holds but we are blessed to know the One Who holds the future in His very hands.

Happy Thanksgiving from the Wallers!

 

Print This Post Print This Post
Newer Posts »