I suppose it is not surprising that the frequency of posts has dropped these last few weeks. With the beautiful addition of Hannah Ruth Ashurst to the family, we have all been a period of adjustment. All and all it has been going pretty good. Elise is operating on a lot less sleep, and I am on a little less, so definitely could use prayer for a sleeping baby (babies) so that we can get some sleep.
The last month has just flown by. But it was really sweet to get to spend the first week just being with my girls as Elise’s mom came up to help and it was a huge blessing. Each week I feel like I’m slowing integrating more fully back into ‘normal’ life; school, church, clinic, fund raising…etc. Overall we feel extremely blessed.
I’m excited to announce that next week (week of 3/2) I will be seeing my first clients in the clinic. I am super excited about the opportunity to do this. So far the clinic has been a great experience as I’ve been able to observe 2nd year students and seasons counselors working their trade. This such a unique program and I’m so thankful.
On the church front, things are going well. We are implementing a coaching structure, starting different initiates for care, outreach and education of the church. I’m very excited. One really neat thing is that we started Immersion Group last weekend and it went really well. I’m so excited about the opportunities that God is giving.
On the funds front, God has been providing through generous people and we are continually in awe. But we are still in progress and are pretty short of our goal for both living expenses and tuition. If interested in any of those please visit here.
Thank you all for praying and keeping up with us. It means more than you know.
Onward we go!
Justin, Elise, Abby & Hannah
Why is change so hard? Why is it so hard to change our mental patterns? How can we say we believe the gospel yet still struggle immensely to believe it and live it out?
I think some insight can be gleamed from a recent chiropractic visit for my 10 day old daughter. Chiropractic adjustments are adjustments that are done to the alignment of our bodies to set them back into a proper place. Unfortunately they don’t stay there but slip back into misalignment. That is why continual adjustments are necessary and eventually the body responds. This is the same idea as braces which continually straighten the teeth. For my 10 day old daughter, she’s already needing regular adjustments.
Might not the same thing be true of our thought patterns? We can temporarily have them corrected in the midst of a good counseling session or gospel presentation. We can feel the relief, the freedom yet within hours we fall back into unhealthy and untrue thought patterns. Might even our cognitions need continual adjustment? It seems to make sense to me.
The difference is, while are bodies often need to be adjusted by others, we can eventually be taught to regulate our own thought patterns. It just takes time…usually longer than all of us would like. This is yet another reason why community and time in the word is so important. We are often the hardest on ourselves and we need the truth spoken to us both by brothers and sisters in Christ, and by Jesus, the Word.
The last two weeks have been amazing. I finished my two week class on Advanced Therapy Skills, which was very good. And then on Superbowl Sunday at 12:34 pm my second daughter was born. Hannah Ruth Ashurst. She’s beautiful!
Needless to say I took last week off of all responsibilities except for my family. We had some scares but overall everything with the birth has gone very well. Our daughter is a tad under 6 lbs, but is doing well. She is so cute. Abby, is being a great big sister. I’m looking forward to them growing up together. Mama is doing well also.
It’s nice to slow down (in a sense) for a week and get to remember what its all about. Family. Whether church or physical, family has been something that has started to wear away in this country. But the closeness and the love that is shared between family members is priceless. And the true pattern for family can only start to shine through the gospel of Jesus. For that I am very thankful.