Inward Struggle

Have you ever struggled with what to focus your time and attention on? I do…all the time.

As a teacher, I want to be the best teacher out there. I want to be the Ron Clark of my school. I want to show my students I care, not just about their learning, but about them. I want to engage students in rigorous tasks that they will remember.

As a wife, I want my husband to have no doubt in his mind that I love him more than any human walking planet earth right now. I want him to know I care by how I serve him, care for him, listen to him, spend time with him. I want to speak his love language so that his love tank is full.

As a mom, I want my daughter to know how much I love her and care about her. I want to teach her and support her dreams. I want to show her the way to live as a godly woman (one day). I want to spend time with her, showering her in attention and words of affirmation.

As a christian, I want to devote my every thought, attitude, and action to loving God and loving others. I want to spend time in my bible reading, studying, and applying His truths. I want to pray for others, myself, and praise God continually.

But my inward struggle is over which of these four will win. These are the big four in my life. I still want to be the best daughter, sister, in-law, designer, blogger, etc. too, BUT the four titles above are where my deepest desires are rooted. And I struggle. I struggle to put the phone down and focus on my daughter and husband. I struggle to pray continually. I struggle to engage all of my students. I struggle all the time.

As 2017 closes out and we are looking forward to a new year, new beginning I am struggling. All of the people I follow on Instagram have these amazing classrooms with fun songs and flashing lights, or beautifully put together homes with nothing out of place, or a million pictures of their families on these amazing trips…and here I am comparing myself to them. The exact thing I tell the teenagers at church not to do.

So today, as I have been reflecting on 2017, struggling with comparing myself to the Instagram world, and looking forward to 2018 I have realized where my focus must be. On HIM. On the Creator of the universe. If I focus on my relationship with GOD, He will pour into me and I will begin to overflow. These excess will only grow and benefit my marriage, my motherhood, and my teaching. I want to ooze Jesus when I am squeezed by the world.

Who cares if I don’t most ten pictures of Hannah each day? Most of you would probably be silently thanking me for not oversharing. Who cares if my classroom isn’t the most matchy-matchy? Who cares if dinner isn’t on the table at 6 and all of the laundry folded before bed?

No ONE!

2018, I’m ready. I’m ready to spend more and more time with King Jesus. Focusing on HIM so that my overflow will cover all of the other areas of me!

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Beyond Proud

We have another college graduate living under our roof!!! To say I am proud would truly be an understatement. Kyle has worked tirelessly for years to finish his Bachelors degree in Christian Ministry and this past weekend he graduated!!! We didn’t drive to New Orleans for commencement, but we have marveled all weekend at how good God is to have provided for his tuition, energy requirements , and motivation to do well.

This man has gone from hating school and reading to completing his degree with all As and Bs. He enjoys reading now and often buys himself books (if you knew him in high school this may sound unbelievable). He has accomplished all of this while being a husband, pastor, dad, and so much more!

I am so impressed by you and will always be your number one cheerleader! Way to go Kyle! Congratulations graduate!!!!

Dear Family and Friends,

Dear family and friends,

God has used 2017 to guide us into places we never imagined, bless us in more ways than we can count, and teach us to lean on Him and each other more than ever.

We began our year celebrating six years of marriage and praying about where God was leading our family. By the end of January, we were being called to Trinity Baptist Church in Calhoun, Georgia. We obediently left Atco Baptist Church after four and half years of ministry.

We continued to pray about a new teaching job, home, and babysitter as March came and went. In April, Danielle accepted a teaching job at Calhoun Elementary School and we began the house hunting process. After six years of teaching at Cartersville Elementary School, we moved Danielle’s classroom to a fifth grade math, science, and social studies class in Calhoun.

Our home in Cartersville sold in June and we found our dream home soon after. With the help of our families, we made a slow transition to our new home (living three weeks between parents’ homes) and began to find a new normal. We were blessed to find another amazing babysitter in Calhoun and she has helped us adjust to life in the ‘houn by caring for our sweet girl.

Hannah made her first trip to youth camp in June and turned one in August. She is growing like a weed and loves to walk (finally), read books, and pretend to cook and eat food. Kyle made another trip to St. Vincent in July for his 6th mission trip to the island. He has diligently worked through his final semester of college and will graduate from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary’s Leavell College on December 15th! Kyle has guided our family and been a rock for us as we have walked through each change God has sent our way. Danielle continues to do ministry alongside Kyle and is currently teaching high school Sunday school.

2017 has brought so much change! We could not have done it without the blessing of God’s hand guiding us each step of the way. We know that God has big plans for us in Calhoun. We hope that 2017 has been full of blessings for you and your family.

Merry Christmas!

With love,

Kyle, Danielle, and Hannah

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“Blessed are the people whose God is the Lord!” Psalms 144:15