Thursday, November 22, 2012

giving thanks

happy thanksgiving to all of you "uh-mericans!" this is such a great day with lots of tradition for many families. it reveals the truth of the value of tradition. not just doing the same thing over and over because you have to but because you WANT to.

consider it a blessing to have a day set aside specifically for giving thanks. may the door swing wide open for our next great holiday.

i now officially give everyone permission to start the christmas music, the decorating and weight gain.

love you all
the lowries

Monday, November 19, 2012

amazing like that

i can remember waking to the news of god doing a work in someone else's life and it resulted in provision for me. there have been so many moments in my life where i had been in tears asking god for provision and asking him for some kind of miraculous breakthrough in order to accomplish something or fulfill an obligation. just as i would pray those words out to him, the very next day i would wake to news of someone, somewhere feeling the urge to bless me or my family in some capacity that was directly related to my petitioning.

god is amazing like that.

what is also true is provision coming from the most unlikely source, or the most unthought of location. even this last trip i had to the states, i felt sure i would see such breakthrough for personal support for what liz and i are doing in belgium. i knew i had some great conversations as i laid my head down to sleep at the end of the day. most of the breaking news of provision while i had been gone was from people in other parts of the world; people i had not even directly connected with while on this particular trip to the states.

god is amazing like that.

i firmly believe god is watching over me and my family. these are the simple and small lessons that are daily reminders in the "god story," (as dutch calls it) the book we read together before bed.

sometimes i have been apart of the greatest provision but fail to see it as such. when my wife and i moved over here to belgium, we had a great plan and it looked feasible. it really was a no brainer from my perspective. however, a week out it seemed things needed to be different and change. the provision of liz's employment now seemed to be more or less a curse from my perspective. i struggled with the genuine calling to be in the land and if this was what i was really meant to be doing. she was in a completely different role than we had planned and even for her the new role was a shift from how she was to operate and function in the company. this new role was actually a "highly" recommended opportunity from her supervisor. long story short...her old position and most of the employees in that department were cut and the department went through massive reduction.

our view of provision is very, VERY one-sided, most of the time. our scope is limited and the big picture escapes our plans in some circumstances. however, i must remember there is ONE who sits on a throne and governs the entirety of life. his provision is HIS provision and may not always align with my way of doing things. if we are to be excited and rejoice in the provision that feels warm and cozy and makes a way for our circumstances to flourish the way we want, we must also cherish the moments of provision even in the midst of great pain and difficulty as it might call us into a season we are dreading. sometimes what we think is best is only something that is good. we might be able to survive, we might be able to get along, but i think this will only prove to be tolerable at best. however, HIS provision supersedes "good," it transcends "tolerable." his provision is BEST and submission to his will will only go to show you through a transformed heart and mind that...

god is amazing like that.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

au revoir carlsbourg

bittersweet. that was pretty much how i felt for this convention de jeunesse 2012. this isn't the last year that c-j will be taking place but is the last year in carlsbourg.

it is bittersweet due to the fact that i gained so much revelation the first year i attended c-j in this facility. the memories and discussions of the eerie feelings of haunted hallways and our plans of strategic get-a-ways in case of a zombie attack. not to mention i love youth camps and the whole youth conference feel. and yet, this facility is so old and outdated. it will be nice to move to a newer facility that can handle the growing demand of youth wanting to attend. it will also be nice for a facility to have adequate sleeping conditions.

it takes you a while sometimes to get to know something. since our first year in 2008, i feel as though i finally got to know this facility and now that i know it we are moving to another location for next year. but make no mistake, i will never forget this place. 200820092011

i'm already looking ghostly

this wasn't at c-j