With 2017 in the rearview mirror, we want to thank you all for caring for us, praying for us, and supporting us in so many ways. Here is our family update for December 2016.
If you’ve been following us for a bit, you know that Josiah has been working hard in his karate class. He again tested for a new belt in December, and he earned his yellow stripe. His particular school ranks the belts as follows: white, orange, green, yellow, blue, brown, and black each with a half-step stripe in between.
A couple of months ago, Mitzi answered an ad on our neighborhood’s social media page posted by an older couple. The wife had experienced a stroke, and needed help to do some light cleaning and take care of household chores. Since then, Mitzi has been going to their home four days per week and helping out. We had a sweet meal with them over Christmas, and have made some neat new friends.
Of course we had a wonderful Christmas at the Peterson house. Mitzi decorated, baked, and basically made the season festive. She made treats to take to neighbors, even to our newest next door neighbor who we are slowly getting to know. We opened gifts both on Christmas Eve (new jammies for all) and Christmas Day. One great thing about modern technology is that we were able to use FaceTime to let family from back in Illinois join us as the kids opened presents from Mama and Granny.
At the beginning of December at Providence Reformed, we had one of our twice yearly women’s brunches. The ladies got together for a time of encouragement and fellowship. One of our ladies taught a Christmas lesson, and everybody had a great time.
For the second year, the Peterson family hosted a deacon and elder Christmas party at our home. Mitzi made yummy burrito bowls with a Hawaiian theme. We also exchanged white elephant gifts and played minute to win it games.
Later that evening, we took those same games to the student ministry Christmas party where they filled out a night that also contained a gingerbread house making contest.
One of the most fun things we do during our Christmas season at PRC is our Christmas Eve service. Like last year, we met together in a home—still with over 40 people—to sing some of our favorite Christmas hymns and focus our minds on the gospel in the celebration. This year, we broadcast our Christmas Eve celebration on Facebook live, where we were joined by people from all over the country. If you would like to see the archived recording, visit the church’s Facebook page www.facebook.com/provref.
PRC had a very nice surprise over the Christmas season. For a while, we were afraid we would have to find an alternative location to meet on Christmas Day, as we could not find a janitor willing to work on Christmas at the middle school where we regularly meet. However, a few weeks before, the principal of the school asked us about our struggle to find help. He then told us that, if we could not find a janitor to come and help us, he would come and unlock the doors himself. Eventually, we found a janitor, but we were thrilled to have that kind of helpful attitude shown to us by the leadership at the school. And, we had a wonderful service on Christmas.
Now, as we head into 2017, our church life and schedule is getting set. We are returning to Matthew for our regular Sunday sermons and looking forward to all sorts of opportunities ahead of us.
We are very grateful to God for you and your prayer support. Please pray for us in the following ways:
- Pray that God will bless and grow our love for him.
- Pray that God will help us as a family to be faithful to our calling to love each other and to live as a light to our community.
- Pray that God will help the church to grow and to impact our city with the message of Christ.
- Pray that God will continue to give us opportunities to share the love of Jesus with friends and neighbors.
- Pray that God will direct our church with wisdom as we decide what to try to accomplish over the coming year.
As always, we would love to hear from you. Feel free to comment on this post, send us a note, or catch up with us on our Facebook page.