Hi readers (all two of you),

This is a BIG, HUGE, AMAZING, GOD-GLORIFYING day! My sister entered an eight month treatment center this morning. It’s three miles from my house. God has been and is still at work in my sister’s life and he just so happened to line everything up this week. His timing is perfect, I’m reminded of this today. Please keep my sister Angel in your prayers.


I’ve been reading a great book recently that pretty much sums up (way better then I ever could) the horn I’ve been tootin’ about there being gospel in a loaf of bread. The book is called A Meal with Jesus: Discovering Grace, Community, & Mission Around the Table and it’s by Tim Chester. Readers, read this book! So often we look for ways to “do mission,” “be on mission,” do more, be more, start something new… Friends, eat meals with people and by doing so, if you love Jesus, you will naturally talk about him. Simple.

An excerpt:

It’s so good to be reminded that the table is a very ordinary place, a place so routine and everyday it’s easily overlooked as a place of ministry. And this business of hospitality that lies at the heart of Christian mission, it’s a very ordinary thing; it’s not rocket science nor is it terribly glamourous. Yet it is the very ordinariness of the table and of the ministry we exercise there that renders these elements of Christian life so important to the mission of the church…Most of what you do as a community of hospitality will go unnoticed and unrecognized. At base, hospitality is about providing a space for God’s Spirit to move. Setting a table, cooking a meal, washing the dishes is the  ministry of facilitation: providing a context in which people feel loved and welcome and where God’s Spirit can be at work in their lives. Hospitality is a very ordinary business, but in its ordinariness is its real worth.

…Meals bring mission into the ordinary. But that’s where most people are – living in the ordinary. That’s where we need to go to reach them. We too readily think of mission as extraordinary.

Yes! Yes! Yes!

A young couple shared meals regularly with me when I was in high school. They taught me so much about the gospel and the love of Christ through doing so, through sharing their life with me – their time, their food, their hearts…

A Meal With Jesus lays out clearly how Jesus came “eating and drinking.” We’re called to be like Him. We’re called to do the same. Read this book!


An excerpt from The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, by C.S. Lewis:

And now a very curious thing happened. None of the children knew who Aslan was any more than you do, but the moment the Beaver had spoken these words everyone felt quite different. Perhaps it has sometimes happened to you in a dream that someone says something which you don’t understand but in the dream it feels as if it has some enormous meaning – either a terrifying one which turns the whole dream into a nightmare or else a lovely meaning too lovely to put into words, which makes the dreams o beautiful that you remember it all your life and are always wishing you could get into that dream again. It was like that now. At the name of Aslan each one of the children felt something jump in its inside. Edmund felt a sensation of mysterious horror. Peter felt suddenly brave and adventurous. Susan felt as if some delicious smell or some delightful strain of music had floated by her. And Lucy got the feeling you have when you wake up in the morning and realize that it is the beginning of the holidays or the beginning of summer.

We’re only as far as Chapter Ten in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, but something magical has happened in our house. The boys, Jude especially, cannot get enough of the beginning adventures of Edmund, Peter, Susan, and Lucy. And after I read the excerpt above in Chapter Seven today, I’m once again enchanted too.

I could write a twenty page essay on this excerpt. No joke. Man, I wish I had the time to tease out every little thought and feeling this paragraph evokes in me….but, another day, another time. (I recently met up with a very dear old friend. We quickly entered a discussion about writing – if we were doing it, basically – and I think we both came away inspired to pick up our pens again. So much has transpired since I last wrote a blog post, that I’m sorry, dear reader, but I’m going to have to pretend you’re caught up. Onward and upward!) What I can say is this: C.S. Lewis is a genius! In this one paragraph, I’m reminded of how different my children’s reactions are to the name of Jesus, even at such young ages. I’m also reminded that my boys don’t necessarily need the Bernstein Bears (total bore-a-thon in comparison). They need adventure!

I’ve been reading a ton of books on educating children lately. Everything I can get my hands on. We’re in the middle of figuring out what the best way of educating our children is. (I say our children because, heck, education is not a one size fits all thing, that’s for darn sure.) One thing I’m coming away with so far that will inform what we introduce to our kids whether we do school at home or not is that they are people. Little people, yes. But people! They have feelings and emotions and intelligence and they’re capable of way more than I ever imagined. I think because of my education experience, my expectations for my kids are formulated to reflect what was expected of me in kindergarten, first grade, second grade, etc. So I think, okay, Jude should be able to read by the end of kindergarten. That’s what’s expected of him in public school, he can totally do it. But instead, I’m realizing……he’s capable of so much more! Not because he’s Jude, but because he has a brain. Anyway, I’m excited to teach him what I can at home, mainly through really fun things like The Chronicles of Narnia, Robin Hood, and adventures in our own backyard. Learning can be fun! By the end of my high school career, it sure wasn’t fun for me. What’s the trick to keeping learning fun and alive? I have no idea, but I’m on a mission. Input appreciated.

I’ll be writing a bit more on our family blog and I just wrote a post on raising our little guys in the city. Check it out.

I’ve been reading Because He Loves Me by Elyse Fitzpatrick. Good stuff. Something I hope to move forward in today is remembering my justification in Christ. Here is a blurb from the book:

I’ve heard the word justified defined as “just as if I’d never sinned.” And while that’s true as far as it goes, it doesn’t go far enough. Not only do we have a clean slate as Adam did, we’ve got something written on that slate that is so amazing I can scarcely believe it: Jesus’ perfect record has become ours. Because God has accredited or imputed Jesus’ perfect obedience to you, when God looks upon you, he sees you as a person who

  • always does the things that are pleasing to him;
  • is so focused on accomplishing his will and work that doing so is your daily food;
  • doesn’t seek your own will but seeks his will instead;
  • doesn’t seek to receive glory (praise, respect, worship) from others;
  • has always kept all his commandments;
  • lives in such a way that your life brings holiness to others;
  • loves others and lays down your life on a consistent basis;
  • lives in such a way that the people around you know that you love your heavenly Father more than anything else;
  • seeks to obey every command so that righteousness will be fulfilled.

In God’s opinion (the only one that matters!) that’s your record today…These truths ought to astound us. (Fitzpatrick, 73)

I read through this list and I think, “No way. There is NO WAY God sees me like this!” But it’s true. He does. Knowing it and believing it gives me hope to walk in the ways of Christ, because only by him in me are these possible. The beauty about justification for me this morning is that instead of focusing on all the things I desperately can’t do – or do wrong everyday – I can instead focus on the work JESUS ALREADY DID! And remember that “the acceptance of the believer with God is perfect the moment he believes because Christ and his work are perfect. The status of the believer can never be improved upon – he possesses all the riches of Christ” (Gerrit Scott Dawson).

I was reminded about self-forgetfulness yesterday at our Sunday gathering. I can forget myself and all my flaws and instead – with great HOPE – reflect on the perfection of my King. So very thankful for the reality of Jesus this morning. Blessings to you as you ponder and meditate on his Greatness.

Hello there! I’ve posted pictures of our place on our family blog. Take a peek!

It’s been a while since I posted last and I have so much on my mind, I’m not sure where to start. So I guess I’ll start right where mine and Mike’s conversation just left off – on mice. Yep, mice. We’ve surely got ’em here in Portland and I’m finally done asking God daily, “Why?” Yes, they’ve been a huge pain/annoyance/inconvenience and have brought up numerous entitlement issues/heart issues. (Need I say health issues? Anyone?) But I’m hoping to soon post to let ya’ll know, our potential visitors, that our home is ready and mouse free. For now, these are my thoughts on the issue.

This may sounds strange, and who knows what the Lord has planned for our future, but since Mike and I got married, I have always envisioned us serving out our final years (hopefully the last ten at least, if we’re lucky) in some crazy country that no one wants to live in for the sole purpose of telling people about Jesus. I really hope to skip conventional retirement. I do. What does this have to do with mice, you wonder? Well, having this little seed in my heart all these years has made it much easier for me to endure minor inconveniences. It’s when I lose perspective on heaven as my home that minor inconveniences become insanely large ones. But when I remember who I am in Christ, all that He endured for my sake, and all that He calls me to – for His sake, I recognize that mice are just little things. And you know where I find my thoughts drifting when in this right mind? I think, “This is good preparation. I may live in a hut someday. I may have spiders and who knows what else crawling all over me when I try to sleep at night. I may be sick, have a disease, miss my family. These darn mice are slowly but surely building perseverance in me. Thank you Jesus.” Is that weird?  I’m weird. I know. I mean, who knows if we’ll get to serve in another country someday. I do know that there are many out there who haven’t heard the blessed good news of Jesus and for whatever reason, I think about those people often and hope and pray that God will bless my feet as I bring them good news. Who knows but God, right?

Anyway, so we’ve got these mice. And along with thanking Jesus for building character and perseverance through the darn things, Mike spoke a good word tonight. He reminded me that there are people in the world who are so hungry and full of need, that they would gladly eat a mouse if it scurried across the floor. We sit here in our huge house with fat bellies, two cars, three healthy, beautiful boys…we’ve got it goooooooood. Mice? Minor, minor pain in the rear. Minor. 

Isn’t it amazing that God sent his only son to this earth to reconcile us, his kids, to himself? To give us freedom and life. To free us from anxiety and worry and depression and doubt. He gave the ultimate sacrifice for our JOY. Not so we could experience joy one time, or maybe twice, but so we could have joy in the midst of any and all suffering. Suffering sounds like a big, crazy event, doesn’t it? But I’m sure you can relate; we can so easily get wrapped up in little things, like mice, that we do feel like we’re suffering. Our countenance shows suffering. I’m sure you can replace mice with xxxxxx, and there you go. You think about xxxxx constantly and your demeanor changes and most importantly, your stance towards God changes to one of defiance and shaking your fist at what he’s allowed to sift through his fingers. But what he’s done in Jesus is he allows us to accept everything from his hand as good. As right. As perfect. And we can still have JOY!!! YESSSSSSSSSSSSS!!! (*smiles…fist pump*) 

It’s been an interesting go in Portland so far. I love it here. I love the whole darn state and I’m so excited I get to live here…but it’s been a little chaotic. My kids have been sick on four separate occasions – in a little over a month. My heart’s been ripped open by family stuff. Mike and I had a rough first few weeks communicating. Our house wasn’t clean when we moved in and we’ve been cleaning, cleaning, cleaning… And we have mice. But as much as I recognize that the enemy of Christ would want to deter our family from serving here and loving this city – I recognize even more that Jesus is alive and victory is won. Again – JOY!!! There’s never a reason to be far from joy for long. So thankful.


Oh man. Mike took a picture of our meal tonight and it just didn’t do it justice! I made Mediterranean quinoa for the first time tonight. Yum, yum, triple yum. I had so much fun making this healthy dinner in my new kitchen tonight. I had a glass of wine, cranked Miles Davis, and went to town. The recipe came from my “Feeding the Whole Family” cookbook. Some of the yummy ingredients? Quinoa, of course. Mint, Italian parsley, fresh lemon juice, currants, feta, and green onions. I served with a salad, homemade miso dressing, and crusty bread (which I vow will be the last store-bought dinner bread I buy! Too expensive!). Mike made a table for our kitchen and we ate there tonight with our pretty white plates. And guess what else? I made extra quinoa and have a starter dough fermenting for a couple loaves of whole grain bread I’m going to attempt to make tomorrow. Woot! Loving my new kitchen, can you tell?

I can’t believe tomorrow will mark our first week in Portland. We have been busy, busy setting up house and at this point, we are excited to be DONE unpacking! Just a few more days left until new carpet is installed upstairs and all will be right with the world….well, at least, in our house. This is a big ol’ old house we live in now. It seems the projects could potentially be endless in this place and I’ve been making mental notes to slow it down, be content with not getting everything done and settled by week one, and I’ve also been taking note that when we own a home someday, the projects can wait – because they’ll always be there. All this to say, we have a lot more space now – and it’s amazing. It’s funny, we’ve always lived in less than 1000 square feet, so we’re used to unpacking in a couple days and moving on with life. This house feels like a mansion to us in comparison to our cozy little places! We’re loving our neighborhood and our new brothers and sisters here. Also, we’ve met most of our immediate neighbors already and there are so many kids just steps away! Today, our next door neighbors brought a plate of cookies over to welcome us to the neighborhood. Their oldest son is five and let me tell you what, Jude is in heaven. Benny too. They have a mini playground in their backyard and a sandbox. I’m sure we’ll have a lot of fun next door this summer.

Maybe you’re wondering how I’m settling in? How my heart is doing. I honestly feel like I’m still in a little bit of a fog. Everyone knows that moving is hectic as can be. There’s all the packing beforehand, the saying goodbye, the anticipation…then there’s the moving in, settling down, feeling out a new city. There’s a lot to take in and I’ve been a slow mover. I have so much peace about making Portland my home. I don’t feel rushed and yet I do feel like there’s a little incubation period to be had, if that makes sense at all. Just time to chill a little, get our bearings, prayerfully consider who the Lord would have us minister to, get our family going on some sort of a routine again…I did have a moment last night while we were out a restaurant just up the road. I don’t necessarily miss Issaquah, the city. I love Portland. But it hit me that it really takes time to be known. And having developed some of the richest relationships to date in Issaquah, I’m encouraged to continue living a life that’s…available. Open. Honest. Vulnerable. True. With the help of Jesus – who so graciously imparts such loving friends in the first place – friendships will once again blossom and bloom here in P-Town. So I guess, it isn’t that I’m lonely or anything like that. Life is simply…different now. What’s coming is unknown, yet I love the adventure.

God’s really been working on my heart this week. I see that today. I recognize him showing me that regardless of any chaos, peace is available to me. Chaos need not effect how I talk to my children, how I talk to my husband. Where I live, what I do…these things don’t define me. Neither does a calm and peaceful house, obedient children, thriving relationships. Jesus defines me. In order for that to be true, I have to believe it. If I believe it, I stop amidst the chaos and give thanks to Him who has allowed everything to pass through his hands. Then, peace. It’s a beautiful thing, really. I may not know how this Portland life will pan out, but I’m reminded that neither Issaquah nor Portland is my home. Heaven is my home. I want everything I do to be done with that in mind. Sure puts life in perspective. God moved us to this place, there is no doubt in my mind about that. He will lead the way. Again, peace.

The boys are adjusting well. Mike has been working hard on the house and has, as always, been the steady rock for me. I ventured out with a new friend today and finally did a bit of grocery shopping. For those who know me well, I LOVE Winco. Bulk bins? Oh yeah, baby. (Unfortunately I didn’t read the price well enough on the darn pine nuts I bought today though. Sheesh! $13 for pine nuts! Oy.) Anyway, I was so excited to be grocery shopping, so excited to be at Winco, and so excited to be in Portland, I just wanted to talk to everyone. There was mucho joy in my heart. There is right now as I write. It may be a little frustrating not being able to unpack because of the carpet situation, but Jesus orchestrated that too.

Not much else to report folks. Your prayers would be greatly appreciated. The boys picked up colds this week and I’m sure would like to feel better. We’ve had amazing sunny weather here all week. Our house gets awesome sunshine and light and is super cozy. Can’t wait to get the fireplace going on the next rainy day.

More soon!

Yep, the Furubotten’s are on the move. Where, you wonder? Patience, my friends. This is something God’s been teaching me (painfully) over the past six months or so, so I pass it on to you. Ha ha! I do share that change is in the works mostly to ask for your prayers in the coming chapter in our life. In my life. God planted the idea of a particular place in our hearts a little over a year ago. I’m guessing I needed that long to finally give in to it. And now, I’m ready. Ready to go. Ready for a new adventure. But I’m a little nervous and still a little hesitant. Not bad things, really, though I do wish I were more resolved. It’s funny…Mike and I have moved seven times in our eight years of marriage. Be it across the state, or to an upstairs apartment from the downstairs. People. It’s all about people. Sure, God’s moving us to a very specific place, but when we get there, life will still be about people. We’ll be in a new city and we’ll love that city and it’ll be our city, but at the end of the day, what’s most important is how we first love God, and second, how we love the people he puts in our life. The difference with this move then the past seven though is that we have THREE babies now. It feels like such a game changer moving with kids. Mike and I were talking tonight about how we’ve moved in the past and have been super bold about how we went about it. We were wondering what’s different this time. Even why we haven’t just moved already? And we realized we just want to go a little slower this time. Be a little more sure. It’s silly really. The God who moved us to three different cities since we’ve been married, who gave us a place to live and at least two job offers within a couple days of moving to town – that same God is moving us again. Isn’t that funny? Every time we moved we moved without a job. Without financial security. We just moved because we knew God wanted us in a specific place. We trusted he’d provide for us. And he did. Every time. And here we are, teetering on the edge. Yep. Teetering. Teetering away. We’re making progress though, and I really look forward to sharing with you (all two of you who still read this blog that I never write on) our next adventure. For those of you who pray to a mighty King Jesus in heaven, please pray for me. I waver something ridiculous, and I’m honestly sick of it. Resolved. Yes! That’s what I want. Pray for THAT! Boo-yah.

On another note, life as a mama of three little boys is gooooooood. I spent a good long while reading books with Benny and Jude today, snuggled under the coziest blanket in the house. I love how Jude has to touch my hand when we’re reading together. And I love the challenge of reading in such a way that Benny will actually remain on the couch. Even if he’s sitting still, his eyes move every which way. I wish I could see in that little brain of his. Granted, Mike was just gone for three days and it was a little intense. They missed their dad and….so did I. It’s a lot of work putting the boys down alone and all of that. Mike’s the one who usually does that business. Anyway, regardless, he’s home now and all is right with the world. He’s a good man, my Mike. A great man.

I’m trying to think of anything else…… Jude turned four. I was pretty emotional on his birthday because I realized that my next party to plan is Si’s! He’s going to be ONE! How did that happen? You’re probably all in shock that I’m not pregnant already. Hahahahahahahahaha! Well, I’m definitely not, in case any of you wanted to know. Poor Silas. If we don’t have any more, I’m going to be holding him like he’s my little baby when he’s five. Maybe even sixteen, who knows.

Alright then. This posts turning into a long one about nothing. So glad we got a chance to reconnect, my loyal readers! Much love, much love.


Current Reading

Give Them Grace: Dazzling Your Kids With the Love of Jesus by Elyse M. Fitzpatrick & Jessica Thompson; Ephesians
Lilypie Fourth Birthday tickers
Lilypie Third Birthday tickers
Lilypie First Birthday tickers

Adoption Fund! (Created 10/1/10)