Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Making Connections

Last night Chris and I had dinner with Phil Claycomb, the director of a church planting organization in Texas, and Bob Wood the director of Oregon Christian Evangelistic Fellowship, who also plants churches. We enjoyed an nice dinner and afterwards began discussing our vision for Portland and possible paths to get there.
I will have to admit that going into this dinner, I was not particularly excited. As a team we have taken some hits over the past few months, and as a result, we have been able to spend very little time focusing on the future. In many ways not focusing on it has been a good thing. The more I focus on the things I can't control, the more things like worry and doubt take over my mind. In other ways, it has made it seem more and more as if this vision will never become a reality. So going into our "meeting" last night, I was just afraid that we were opening ourselves up to another blow. Chris however, was optimistic as usual, and he was right.
The conversation revolved around when we were moving, what our vision is, where we will live, possible places to get experience in Portland or surrounding ares, possible people and organizations to get connected with, etc. I don't have any incredible news to report, or any great developments to inform you of, but for me, the overall encouraging tone of the evening was a huge blessing. I have found myself so discouraged and doubtful lately, and I needed someone, anyone, to talk to us as if they were on our side, as if they believed that God could or would choose to use us. Physically we left with a business card, a couple names, and a phone number, but mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, I know at least I left with a renewed sense of calling, and affirmation that the Lord is with us. I was reminded in such a subtle way that when the Lord calls you to do something, He will not leave you without the means to get it done.

Plus, there was great soup and good coffee. :)

Monday, December 15, 2008

Its beginning...

to look a lot like Christmas around the Haney (Jewett, Bair) house. Actually we have had our Christmas decor up since Thanksgiving evening. I love our Christmas trees. I love Christmas trees in general.

It is sometimes hard for me to get into the "Christmas spirit" here. Yesterday, for example, Chris was wearing shorts! It was December 14th for goodness sake! I have been counting down the days till I get to go home to the freezing cold and spend Christmas with my family. I still am counting down (7 days to go...yay!), but this week as I was taking pictures of my Christmas trees, I was reminded that Jesus is far bigger than the fact that there is no snow on the ground, and my husband is in shorts. Christmas is about celebrating the fact that God loved us so incredibly much that he sent a tiny baby to rescue us all from a life without Him. It seems so silly to get caught up in the little things that aren't really about Christmas at all. So here are a few of those pictures from our Christmas tree trimmings.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


Okay, so I can't quite figure out why I have become such a bad blogger. Well, actually, I can't ever really claim that I was a good one, but I am certainly worse than I have previously been. It seems that I have found myself in a rather dry place with nothing worth writing about. This though, is in fact not true. There are plenty of things going on in my life (plenty of great things, plenty of crappy things), yet throughout all of them I am finding myself unmoved. Thus, I am not motivated to write.
Why is it that we come to those places? Why is it that we go through spells where it simply seems like we are on autopilot? I'm not even sure how apathy begins to creep in. Do we invite it? Does it come as a result of laziness? Or maybe its a defense mechanism? (I can't remember needing to defend myself from something.) And, how do you get rid of it?
It is an awfully unfortunate thing to be apathetic and numb around the holidays. It seems there is so much to savor and enjoy, not the least of which is the very reason we celebrate Christmas. But, here I am, aware that this time of the year I should be celebrating my Savior, finding myself unable to mean it, unable to feel it.
I am not ungrateful. Or, maybe I am. Maybe if I were truly grateful I wouldn't be in this dull and lifeless place. Whatever the case, I do not believe myself to be unappreciative of Christ and the incredible gift he has given me. I am just stuck. I am stuck, and apathetic, and growing more and more stagnant...and from what I know, stagnancy leads to death. I think I desperately need to figure out how to get "unstuck".

Friday, November 14, 2008


Since I have been so good a keeping up with this lately, I decided that I may as well title this entry for the month. Chances are it will be the only one. Lately things have been great! We, of course, are busy as usual, but all is well in the Haney/Jewett/Bair household. Yes...that is as ridiculous as it sounds. Life is always an adventure in our house.
This week was incredible for all of us. We attended a church planter's seminar, and we all got so much out of it. I now find myself encouraged, motivated, and completely overwhelmed. There is so much to do! I know that it is going to take nothing short of 1000 miracles for God to make this happen. All of us are beyond thrilled and excited to be a part of what God is doing and what He will continue to do in the Pacific Northwest. Lately it seems like at any given moment God will throw us something new. A couple weeks ago a guy from Portland literally just showed up on our doorstep! He just happened to knock on our door as part of a community outreach project, and he just happened to be working with a church plant here in Dallas. We have since visited with him twice about what we are going to be doing in Portland, and he is helping us establish connections and learn the city. Unbelievable!
Then this week a pastor at the seminar asked if we would be willing to be his missionaries for his summer week of camp. He wants us to come and share and teach and lead as the camp financially supports ThePortlandProject. Again...unbelievable!
I am sure these seem like small simple things, but we are learning the importance and the significance of every victory and affirmation that God gives us. When we stop celebrating these moments, we will begin to forget who is behind it all. God is so good, and we are so incredibly blessed to be called to this ministry. Please continue to pray! We need prayer more than anything!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Settled...sort of...

Well, there is really no excuse. It's been two days short of a month since I last posted. I'm sorry I haven't been keeping up. We have moved into our new house. Everything is slowly but surely finding its place. It has been a much easier adjustment than I had expected. Everyone is getting along great, and we are all adapting to living with each other very well. Everyone has been so considerate of giving each other space, and we actually are already seeing areas where we are saving money! So that is great!
The dogs are loving the house! There is a really big yard...okay for Dallas it's a really big yard...for Indy, it's a pretty much normal. Anyway they are loving the freedom. Owen, however has the ability to spring, in a single bound, right over the fence. We knew he could do this before we moved in. We had seen him jump twice that high before, but HE didn't know he could do it until yesterday. Of course, now that he has figured it out he keeps doing it. So we really have to figure out something to keep Owen in the yard. That is another project for this week.
As usual we are insanely busy. Chris and I realized a few weeks ago, that we are not going to have a free weekend until sometime in December. It is incredibly draining not to have a day off. It is definitely taking a toll on our bodies and our minds. It has been amazing to see how that Lord has sustained us through it. It always seems like we won't have enough time, and God always end up pulling everything together.
Church is going fabulously. We LOVE it there. The people are just unbelievable! They are so supportive of us, and they are such a wonderful picture of the body of Christ. Of course, though, it keeps us busy. We are loving all the opportunities the Lord is giving us to connect with students and their families. We have small groups on Wednesdays, and this week the high school girls are making Mexican food and carving pumpkins. It should be a ton of fun!

News on Portland:
Things are coming together! We had a weekend retreat a couple of weeks ago, and it was awesome. We were far more productive than I imagined we would be. We worked on doctrinal statements and core values. It is so awesome to see what is essentially the DNA of our church, come together on paper. God is doing incredible things, and this is only the beginning. We have been working on building community with our team, and thought we have hit some bumps and snags along the way, God is refining us into what He wants us to be.
Justin, another one of our team members is moving to Dallas, to live with us, this Sunday. We are so excited that he will be here with the rest of the team. We will finally have all of the committed team members in the same place. I can't wait to see how things begin to progress once we are all able to meet together on regular basis.
This Saturday will be the 1 year mark for when we will be embarking on our adventure to Portland. Chris and I were just talking this morning about how strange it will be to pack up everything we own and move to a completely foreign city. I never quite imagined this would be where, or how the Lord would lead us, but now that it's happening, I can't imagine a better way.
We have been updating our website, and you can keep track of all of the new progress there. This week we should be updating the prayer list, but for now I will let you know so things that you could be praying for.

Please Pray For:

  • Justin- that he would adjust well to Dallas, and to living with us. Please pray that he would be able to quickly find a job.
  • The entire team- that we would be united, and that we would continue to grow in accountability and as a body of believers.
  • Alison and Caleb- that the Lord would bless them as they get closer and closer to their wedding, and that they would be strengthened in their relationship with the Lord through their relationship with each other.
  • Finances- that we would all be able to save money, and be good stewards of what the Lord has blessed us with. Pray that God would provide everything that we need as we adjust to the economy of the Pacific northwest. Pray for God to raise up people who would be able to support us.
  • Portland- that God would be moving and preparing the hearts of people there. Pray that seeds are being planted even now, and that God is raising up people who will be leaders in the church and who will run along side us as we bring the message of the Gospel to the city.
  • New Team Members- We still need more people to come with us. Pray that God would begin to call people and prepare their hearts for this ministry. Pray that we would be wise and discerning in choosing the leaders of this church.

That is good for now. Please check out the website!

I will try to be better at posting!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008


Well, we're moving again. Actually, its going to be quite an adventure. We are moving into a three bedroom house, but we're not going to be alone. It's kind of a long story, but through much confirmation from the Lord, we are going to have roommates for the next year. It seems so strange to have roommates again!
Moving to the West Coast is going to be quite a financial leap. So this year we are saving, saving, saving! We have school loans to pay off and money that needs to be saved. God has been faithful in providing for us, and after much prayer and fasting, He has presented us with this option. We continued to pray and seek confirmation and we have concluded that if we are seeking the Lord in prayer for a solution and He has provided us with one, unconventional though it may be, we will accept it. Sometimes the Lord will ask you to do strange or crazy things, but we know that He is faithful and that He knows exactly what He is doing. So, we are trusting Him in this.
In the mean time we have lots and lots of packing and consolidating to do! Chris and my closet space is going to be about 1/5 of what it is now! We are getting creative and frequenting the Container Store! It should be interesting.
I'll keep you posted.

In other news... ThePortlandProject.org is officially up and running! You can visit the website to get information about our progress and the members of our team. Individual bios should be up within the next day or so. We are so excited about what the Lord is doing. Please visit our prayer support tab. We believe in the power of prayer and can use all the prayer support we can get!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008


Lately I have been missing Indy. I mean, I always miss home and my family. For example, I missed two very special weddings this summer, not the first of the very special weddings I’ve missed either. Last year I missed Caleb and Beth Bollman’s wedding. I hated that. Caleb has been one of my very dearest and best friends since I was 13 years old, and I missed the most important event in his life. It isn’t supposed to work that way. I was always a part of every big thing in his life, and he in mine, but I missed it. I missed it just like I missed Donnie and Caryn Fisburn’s, and Zach and Katie Myers’ weddings this summer. I hate missing things like this. I hate missing milestones. Donnie who is another great friend, and Zach who is like a little brother were ushers in my wedding, but I missed theirs.
Last week my baby brother went off to college! Thomas, in college! I can hardly believe it. I wish that I could have been around to help him get all settled in or at least to see him off, but 900 miles is a bit of a haul for something like that. My best friend is going to graduate from Purdue this year. I probably won’t see that. I am certain that more people will get engaged and married, and chances are I will only hear about it through the grapevine and get to look at the pictures on Facebook. (I hate that I get caught up on things through Facebook). So yeah, missing my friends and family never really stops, but lately, I’ve been missing Indy… just the place itself.
I can’t remember the last time I went to Sky Concert over Labor Day, or walked the canal. I haven’t been to the Zoo in forever. I miss Monument Circle, and the Border’s, and the brick sidewalks, and the weather (oh how I miss the weather!). I miss the old buildings, and driving down Meridian Street just to look at the houses. I miss the Spaghetti Factory, and I never thought I would miss The Spaghetti Factory. I miss being in Indy for Colts season. I can be a Colts fan anywhere, but it’s just not the same here. I am especially jealous that I am missing the transition to the Lucas Oil Stadium!


Let me tell you why Dallas is better. (I never thought I would say or type those words.) Dallas, itself, is not better. If you ask me, I would never say that Dallas is better. Aside from the fantastic places to eat and the malls, Indy is certainly more my kind of city, but Living in Dallas is better.
Being married is better.
Learning how to take what I have been taught at home, and live it out as an adult is better.
I always took advantage of the fantastic community that I grew up in, but learning its importance and how to create it is better.
Learning selflessness is better.
Learning sacrificial love is better.
Learning discipline is better.
Learning to be content and whole with Jesus as my everything, is better.
Learning to take responsibility for my actions, and perhaps more importantly, for my inactions, is better.
Learning what it truly means to serve is better.
Learning that I am not as great as I thought I was is better.
Learning that I sometimes the Lord doesn’t do things my way is better.
Learning to trust that God knows what He is doing even when I don’t, is better.
Learning to be patient is better.
Learning to humbly receive God’s blessings is better.
Learning the power of prayer and how to pray is better.
Learning what it means to be the body of Christ is better.
Learning how to press in to a relationship with Jesus is better.
Learning that I have a lot to learn is better.
Learning to live solely for the purpose of Christ is simply better!

So I’ve been missing Indy lately, but I have also been reminded that if Dallas is the place where I am to learn what it means to be a disciple of Christ, then Dallas is far better, and I am a grateful that the Lord has brought me to Dallas.
With Indianapolis in the past, Dallas in the present, and Portland in the future, I am finding myself indescribably thankful for the solid foundation and the seeds that took root in Indy, and for the sometimes painful growth and pruning I am experiencing in Dallas, and for the fruit that I am certain will be produced in Portland.

Yes, I am sure that this is better.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

New Job, New Roommate, New Dog, New Job...

Oh yes.  Lots of new things. And no, that wasn't a mistake, I did say "new job" twice.  I just started my new job at DCC, which I am loving.  Its a little crazy, and very busy, but I am LOVING being busy.  Of course, I hardly feel like its new.  Its so wonderful to walk into work and know that you are actually going to have a good day.  So, all is well there!

Vicki moved back to Dallas yesterday, and as Caleb moved out, she moved in.  We've gotten accustomed to housing someone else, and we figured what's the difference?  She had a roommate back out on her and so we figured, we have an extra room and we love Vicki, so she's here! 
Of course, with Vicki... comes Gertrude Penelope Cleopatra Harvell... her dog.  Owen gets a little crazy when Gertie is around, and she has already peed in the house three times.  Owen, who is house broken, seems to think that if Gertie pees... he should pee.  Sound logic if you ask me.  So, I'm thinking there will be a little bit of an adjustment period, but we'll get through it!
Even more great news... Chris was officially offered the Associate Minister position at Cornerstone Christian Church.  We are so excited and we love the church so much!  God has blessed us with such a giving family there, and we are so blessed that they have asked us to stay for the next year.  The counsel voted on the issue last week, so he is "officially" in his new position this week.  
Always interesting around here.  I'm sure there will be more to come soon.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Goodbye Performisys

Well, at least sort of goodbye. Today is my last day at Performisys. This is where I have worked since last May, which means, this is was my first job as a college graduate, and the job I have had for my entire first year of marriage. Its not exactly what I had expected I would do, but it is what God gave me, and for that I am grateful. It put a helped to put a roof over our heads and food in our stomachs, and then some. Though it wasn't my ideal job, and I certainly will not miss the "job" part of it, I will miss the people. I can't imagine working for nicer people. God really blessed me, and I forgot that all too often. Thank goodness He loves me and forgives me for my often ungrateful heart.
I am however very excited to start my new job at DCC! In spite of all of the things about DCC I could do without, it holds a special place in my heart, and I am really looking forward to being there again.
I am still going to be doing some extra work for Performisys on the side, every now and then, but for now, Goodbye Performisys!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Last week should have been really bad...

but somehow, it wasn't. I can't explain it. As Chris and I were pulling back into our place, from a quick trip to Oklahoma for a funeral, Chris said "you know, this week should have been really terrible." I said, "yeah, it wasn't though, was it? I feel like I should be completely overwhelmed and exhausted, but I'm not."

As always, so much has been going on. Last week Chris was alone in the church office. Ron, our senior pastor, was out of town, so everything was left to Chris. He was preparing to preach on Sunday, and of course preparing for his regular youth activities. We got a call on Tuesday that his great grandmother had passed away, and the funeral was Friday. So we were going to have to head to Oklahoma on top of an already busy week. On Wednesday, I got laid off from my job. Fantastic timing! Oh, and by the way... Texas is ridiculous, so our electric bill for the last month was $350!!! For our apartment! Bad news. Not to mention that gas is so expensive and we had to drive to Oklahoma.

Yet somehow with financial stress, job stress, and family stress, we weren't stressed! God is awesome!

So, first thing Monday morning I had an interview with Dallas Christian College, and before I left the offered me the job! And they offered me more money than I thought they would! I start Monday. Praise God! I didn't even have time to stress about a job! I love how God provides.

Then Tuesday came with enough struggles of its own. I don't know if any of you know this, but sugar free gum is toxic for dogs, which is fantastic because my dog ate a whole pack! Wonderful. So we really needed to take the dog to the vet yesterday, but we did not have the money. We weren't even sure how we were going to be able to afford our rent check because of our electric bill and gas to Oklahoma. We have money coming in at the end of the week, but we needed our rent paid before that, and our dog was apparently going to die! So, we figured that just to afford rent we would need to come up with $75. We frantically scrounged around the house, and with the $50 check I had in my purse, the $5 bill Christ had in his wallet, and all of the random loose change coming to $26, we had $76! God is awesome again! (Go figure) We still weren't going to be able to take the dog to the vet, but low and behold, we got a check for $500 before the hour was over. God gave us what we needed and then some! We got to take our dog to the vet and he didn't die (though he did poop 5 times in the house!).


Later that day we found 20 bucks and someone gave us gift cards to The Cheesecake Factory! Haha! The Lord is crazy good to us!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


We are back from taking our high schoolers to CIY's Move conference. We had an absolutely fantastic week! These kids are simply incredible. This was a first time experience for everyone except Chris and me. Vicki came with us, but even she had never been before. None of them had any idea what to expect, and all of them were blown away. Before we left for the conference, we had a bunch of individuals who would show up for Sunday school and youth group on a semi-regular basis, and have the usual "Hi, how are you?" conversations with one another. Before we left to come back to Dallas, these kids were a family. Aside from experiencing Christ in a way that they could never have imagined, I think that the most incredible thing they discovered was each other!

Unfortunately, we had one student who was, at the last minute, unable to come with us. She was put in the hospital the Monday before we left, and will continue to be there for many weeks to come. Our great God, though, managed to bring some good out of the tragedy. These nine high school students have experienced the body of Christ as it is intended to be. The unified over the common goal of encouraging their sister, and fighting for her in prayer. I have never seen such a genuine outpouring of love. The most powerful moment of the week was when we, in the middle of Friday evenings worship service, felt the Holy Spirit leading us to immediately hit our knees and cry out to the Lord on her behalf. With tear stained faces, and hands lifted to heaven each student, prayed, wept, and pleaded for her frail body to be healed and for her heart and mind to be released from Satan's grip. I saw, we all saw, and some of us for the very first time, the Church as God intended it. I know that lives were changed. I know that God healed and united hearts. I can't wait to see what He is going to do over the next year! I have seen, far too many times, kids come back from this kind of experience only to return to the life that they led before they left. I am praying that this will not be the case for these kids, and I serve a God who is powerful enough to really change hearts. I believe He will. I believe He already did.

Plus we had a lot of fun!

Monday, July 7, 2008

So Behind!

I know it has been a long time since I have posted, and actually its not that there isn't anything to report. In fact, there is so much to report that I have not been able to figure out where to start! God is doing so many crazy, and awesome things! I would love to be able to share all of the details now, but unfortunately, a couple more things have to fall into place before I can spill everything! I am hardly able to contain myself, but for now, I have to. I promise, though, an update will come!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

"There is no participation in Christ...

without participation in His mission to the world." - James A. Scherer

I read that this week in a book I actually have already read, but for some reason I passed it by the first time without much thought. This time however, the weight of it hit me as if it was something roughly the size of a grand piano being dropped from a hundred feet and landing squarely on my chest.

If what Mr. Scherer is saying is in fact true, then I have to conclude that most of the Christians that I know rarely have, if ever, "participation in Christ." I suppose for that to really sink in and make sense, we would have to understand what Scherer meant by "participation in Christ," and although I cannot be sure on his exact intentions, I don't believe he meant to imply that we could not have at one time or another experienced the Love of Christ, but rather that we, without being active participants in his mission to the world, cannot experience the LIFE that comes in Christ, which according to Christ himself, is the very thing He came to bring!

So while I sit in church and sing songs of God's goodness, mercy, grace, and power, while I listen intently to sermons, pray and read, if I refuse to get my hands dirty doing his work, if I refuse to step out of my comfort zone, if I refuse to help those in need of God's grace, If I refuse to proclaim his gospel, I refuse any participation or LIFE in Christ.

Paul said in Acts 20:24, "I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given to me- the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace." Can you imagine living in such a way that all else is worthless compared to fully participating in the mission of Christ- the message of God's grace to the world? Later Paul says in 1 Corinthians 15:19 that if the gospel isn't true than he, more than any other, is most to be pitied. Because, it was for the sake of the gospel that Paul gave his life, and if the gospel is not true than every once of Paul's life, after Christ, would have been wasted entirely.

I realized after reading what James A. Scherer spoke, I cannot claim that my life has been entirely wasted on the gospel. I cannot claim that my life is worth nothing to me except to testify to God's grace. I cannot claim to truly have any participation in Christ. So, this week I have been thinking about that statement, and I have been thinking about what my life would look like if I started living the gospel instead of listening to it, and frankly, I don't know what it would look like. I have seen it truly lived out in few people, but what I am certain of is that I want to be one of those people. I want to completely dedicate my life on the the good news of God's grace, I want to participate so deeply in Christ and His mission, that if it isn't true (and I believe more than anything that it is) my life will have been nothing but wasted.

So, my prayer is this, that Jesus would open my eyes to opportunities in which I can be Him to a dying world. And my prayer is that when I am given those opportunities He will give me the courage to participate.

Monday, June 9, 2008

One Year and Counting...

I can hardly believe that Chris and I have been married for a year now! It is just amazing how time flies. It really seems like its barely been a couple of months, but here we are a year later, and we have survived it! This may have been the most difficult and the most rewarding year of my life. I have been so very blessed to have such an incredible husband, and I can't wait to see where this next year takes us!


Friday, June 6, 2008

Maybe This is Why

So, it's hard to believe that I have been at my current job for over a year! Although everyday goes by incredibly slow, the year, as a whole, has flown. For any of you who don't know, I work at a very small company that has absolutely nothing to do with my degree. Though, I love the people I work for, and perhaps they have been all that has kept me here, I really don't like my job. It's not that I don't like what we do, in fact, when I actually have something to do, I enjoy it! The problem is just that. I have NOTHING to do! Seriously. I am here 8 hours a day, and on a good day the phone will ring on average 5 times. On a really really good day the calls are more than sales calls, wrong numbers, or automated messages (I hate those!). Every now and then I'll have a day that requires something of me, but I would say that out of the entire year + I have been here I have a had about 2 weeks worth (not consecutive days) of busy time. I find myself wondering how I am still here, how I have LET myself still work here. I am constantly thinking, I know I am too smart to sit here and waste my days! (or at least I used to be, before all of my brain cells started dying off from boredom!) Here is a quick rundown of my daily activities:

I get here at 8:30
make coffee
check my work e-mail (usually just deleting junk mail)
check my personal e-mail
check facebook
read every blog I know of
check my bank account
check out the organizational tip of the day at MarthaStewart.com
Do the USA Today crossword (I'm getting pretty good!)
Check facebook again (I know, I'm so lame)
Check my bank account again
go to the bathroom (even if I don't have to go, just to get out of my chair)
read wikipedia (any article really. one day i read about Scientology for 4 hours! those people are nuts!)
oh! the phone just rang! Yes! better answer it! crap, they hung up...
eat lunch
etc. etc. etc.

you get the point. So anyway, the other day, one of my co-workers, he is from India, and and nominal Muslim sent me an IM telling me that I said something to him a couple of months ago that left a really great impact on him, and he just wanted to say thank you. I don't know what I said, and he said he couldn't repeat it, because it wasn't really one comment it was whole conversation. He and I have had some really great conversations, (conversations with people here are about the only thing that keeps me sane) and they usually revolve around faith or God, and the beliefs we had in common. We have never really had a conversation where I attempted to "witness" to him in a traditional sense. We just talk very openly and honestly in a completely non-threatening and non persuasive way. Understand, this has been completely intentional on my part. I have never once looked for an opportunity or hoped for one where I could tell him that his whole family is wrong and that Jesus is the only way. I simply shared my life with him, and allowed him to share his life with me. I do recall expressing to him that the reason I have picked Jesus is because I simply can't find anything better, and because it is the only way I know I can wake up each morning and not feel guilty. (Selfish, perhaps, but true.)
Anyway, I don't know what it was that I said, or did exactly, but he said

"it was the most human thing that any one has ever said to me. The most profound- one human to another thing. I don't know how to explain it."

Then we went on after that to talk about grace and forgiveness.

I am not writing all of this to brag about whatever "brilliant" thing I said, who knows when, but I am writing this because I have struggled. I have struggled and struggled this year to find my place, my direction, my purpose. I have wrestled with God and asked him what on earth I am doing here wasting my time. I have pleaded to be used and to have a purpose. And all the while, I felt like God said nothing! I hate feeling useless more than anything in the world, and that has made this year, and this place, and this job, nearly unbearable for me! But yesterday I was told this, that I made a difference. That God used me. It may have been just this one time and in this whole year, but if that is the case, IT'S WORTH IT! If I have only been here so that one person might experience the love and the grace of Jesus Christ, then its all worth it.

My friend knows the struggle it's been for me to be here with nothing to do (he has a real job and is very busy) So I said to him:

"well maybe that's why i work here!
so that one time, i could have been sitting in your office talking with you, saying something that i didn't know would mean something to someone else. I'm glad I don't know what I said to you, because it keeps me humble. I believe that God does stuff like that, speaks through people when they don't know. Because most of the time we're all bumbling idiots, but every once in a while he uses us for something good in spite of ourselves."

It's a relief to know that God has already forgiven me for questioning His plan.

Thursday, June 5, 2008


I went home to see my little brother graduate from high school last week. I am so pround of him! I can't believe he isn't a little kid anymore. It was so wonderful to spend some time visiting with my family and dearest friends, and I can hardly believe that I won't get to do it again until Christmas. Yet, as wonderful as it was, it left me with a sort of strange empty feeling. It's an odd feeling, when, for the first time, you realize that you no longer belong at the place you have always called "home." I can't say that it makes my top 10 list for best feelings in the world.

The biggest trouble with it all is, I don't feel like I belong here in Dallas either.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

I know...

I promised pictures, but obviously I'm a liar. (The Lord has already forgiven me, so you should too.) I don't have any yet. BUT... I do have Chris's Sr. Sermon! He did a fantastic job!

Check it out!

Also, Vicki's Sr. Sermon is on here, if you want to listen to hers. She did a great job too!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Big Weekend Ahead

We are all moved in! Hooray! Thanks to our wonderful, wonderful friends, we are all (mostly all) settled in. All we really have left to do is sort through one bin of miscellaneous junk, and finish the laundry. The new place is mostly great. Aside from the dryer no longer drying, the washer leaking, the dishwasher leaking, and the oven the caught on fire...everything is great. I know you're thinking those are big issues, but they fixed the oven, and soon they will be looking at the dishwasher. Chris is going to take a look at the washer, and well the dryer is a mystery, but who needs dry clothes anyway. As long as they're clean, right? I figure it could be worse, I mean Vicki has a hole in her kitchen ceiling. At least I don't have that. :)
Chris has finished school! (for now) Hooray again! This weekend all of his family, and a handful of mine (yay!) are coming in to celebrate and participate in all of the graduation festivities. It will be crazy, but a lot of fun! I am really looking forward to seeing my mom, brother, and papaw. I'm sad that the rest of the clan can't make it, but I'll be in good ole' Indy in just a few weeks for my brother's graduation (I can't believe he's not 5 anymore!), and I'll get to see everyone then.

In Owen News:

We're doing pretty well. He has only peed four times in the new place, and only pooped once. Not bad, I'd say! His new favorite thing though, is running up and down the stairs...that's kind of annoying. Hey, you win some, you lose some.

Sorry, Chris's Sr. Sermon still isn't posted. Those people are so slow! I will post it as soon as I have it, and I will post pictures from this weekend and the new apartment. Stay tuned!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Sick, Packing, Moving...

Working, preaching, preparing to graduate, changing jobs...

That has pretty much been our week. Unfortunately its not over yet! Chris's family came in on Monday for his Sr. Sermon, which was on Tuesday. We went out to dinner with one half Monday night, and with the other half Tuesday afternoon. He did an absolutely fantastic job, and as soon as it is placed on a podcast I will post a link so you all can hear it!
Our first official Sunday at our new church, Cornerstone Christian Church, was this last Sunday. I think it went wonderfully! I am loving the kids, and the whole church is so welcoming, but it is all a bit overwhelming.
I have been feeling under-the-weather all week, and Today is the first day since Saturday that I am feeling halfway decent. That has been no fun! Not to mention that it is especially a hassle when we are trying to get ready to move into a new place on Saturday. And have a gotten anything packed??? No. Not a thing. Poor Chris is finishing a paper that is due by midnight, and a project that is due Monday, but considering we are moving Saturday and have a children's picnic after church on Sunday, he really needs to get it done...well...yesterday. And did I mention that our electricity is being transferred tomorrow...which is Friday...we are moving Saturday. The electric company can't do a transfer on a Saturday, and they can't overlap days so sometime tomorrow, they couldn't tell me when, my power will get cut, and since I can't get into my apartment till Saturday morning after 9:00am I guess we will have to make sure everything is ready to go before dark.
Furthermore, Owen, our wonderful dog has gone on a new peeing rampage! I don't know what his deal is, but Tuesday he decided that he should pee all around the bedroom at 11:30 pm, as I was getting ready for bed, and I had to clean that up. So, I decided he needed to be put in his crate while I cleaned up the mess. As soon as I put him in his crate he managed to, from somewhere deep inside, find about a liter's worth more of pee to release in his crate, and then sit in it of course! As if that wasn't enough, last night he decided to get on my bed and pee in the middle of it, through the comforter, the top sheet, bottom sheet, mattress pad, egg crate, and finally to my beautiful, new, pillow top mattress. Oh lovely! So last night at 11:00 when I discovered this as I was crawling into bed...oh yes...crawling into bed...because you see, I have terrible vision and I wear contacts, which I took out in the bathroom. Thus, until i placed my hand and my butt into the pee puddle I did not notice it. I took everything off, had to clean it up, and had to scrub the mattress down with stain remover. Oh, how I love my dog!

So...needless to say this week = crazy! But, life's an adventure right?!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

I miss them...

i miss the crazy...

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Perhaps I spoke too soon...

things aren't falling into place like I thought. No surprise there I guess. God, of course, is as good as always, and things are falling into place, just not how I had planned. How I planned?? Ha! Is that a joke?! Am I still planning??!! You'd think I would learn my lesson! Anyway... all that to say... we are here in Dallas now. We are moving to a new apartment for now. I am keeping the job I have now. Chris is starting a new job now.

...all of that is still true...for now...

Lord, lead us...

...more on that later...in the meantime...pray.

P.S. He does know what He's doing right??? Someone, please remind me that He knows what He's doing!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Happy Birthday Chris!

Yesterday was Chris' birthday, and I'm a little late in posting, but considering I didn't even see him until 10:30 last night, and I won't see him most of today either, we are just pretending that Thursday is his birthday. So, if Thursday was his birthday I wouldn't be late at all. :)

In other news...
God is good.
OK, so I suppose that isn't big news. God has always been good. I have just really been reminded of it in the last week. It seems that every concern I had since my last post has been taken care of. Chris has been offered, and accepted the associate minister position at Cornerstone Christian Church, we are officially moving in 24 days, and it looks like I don't have to find a new job, and Chris can keep his guitar students. See, what was I even worried about?!

It is a little surreal though. I was telling my mom and Ericka that up until now I have had in the back of my mind that Dallas wasn't really my home. That this was only a transitional place for me. I still call my parents house "my house." I still call Indy "home." It started to hit me, when we were praying about taking this position, that this would officially make this home for me. I know I have been living here married, and out of school for nearly a year, but something is different now. Before we were waiting for the next step, and now we are in the next step. It just so happens that the next step didn't take us to a new place. Anyone who knows me at all is aware that Dallas doesn't quite make the top of my list for "great places to live," but the reality is, this is home for me now. I get a little choked up just typing those words, but the more I say them and type them, the more natural it will become. I hope. Because this is probably where we will buy our first house, and where our first kid will be born. This is it, Dallas, my home.

I won't lie, I don't quite like the sound of it yet. Maybe soon.
Some of these Texans really are starting to grow on my though. ;)

p.s. Just for the record, this does NOT make me a Cowboys fan!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Chris is almost finished

with his last semester in of school. Graduation is Friday, May 9th. I counted and I realized, that makes us 52 days from total uncertainty. At this point we have no idea what we will be doing on May 10th. Will we be living in Dallas? Will I be needing to find a new job? Our lease is up at the start of May, so I know one thing for sure, we will be finding a new place to live. The problem is, I don't even know what city that will be in!
For anyone who knows me, you can imagine that this has been a real struggle for me. I am a planner! I like to know what comes next and exactly when it is coming, so that I can be prepared in every way. It has been so hard for me to be content in not knowing. I am finding myself getting really stressed over not having the stress of planning...how's that for ironic?
I know God is teaching me a lesson. I know he is trying to remind me to trust that his timing is perfect, and even as I am looking at the calendar seeing the days slip away, he knows exactly how and when everything will fall into place. What is so frustrating is that this isn't the first time God has felt the need to teach me this lesson. I guess he thinks I am not getting it...wonder why that is?

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

"Chicago is...

my kind of town!" I told you pictures would be coming, and so they have! Chris and I had been saving and planning to go somewhere, and we decided to combine our trip with a special occasion, and surprise my most amazingly wonderful friend, Ericka, for her birthday. And getting to meet up with my cousins Greg and Shannon was the icing on the cake of a wonderful trip!

Chris, on our way to surprise Ericka...it was a little chillier than he is used to.

First stop was at what Ericka calls "the giant pea."Our reflection inside "the pea"
Obviously Ericka isn't too good with her vegetable shapes...

Next stop, Sears Tower...

which, by the way, is not as easy to find as you would think the tallest building in the city would be to find without a map...and lunch, Chicago pizza! mmmm...Having fun so far!

You should know that following our lunch we caught a bus to head back up town, when Chris decided he wanted to know just where the bus is taking us, and so he pulled a map out of his pocket. Do you remeber how I said we didn't have a map to find the Sears Tower?! Oh wait! Yes we did! Chris had one in his pocket all along!!! Are you kidding me?!? If we all weren't laughing so hard, we probably would have strangled him!

Later that day we caught Andrew filling up his cup in a hotel lobby fountain...ew!
This was post Billy Joel sighting. Yeah, that's right, we saw Billy Joel in Tiffany's!

Ericka was so excited about the bull!

Though it was clearly a struggle to get up there, it was hilarious!

We made it! (it's a little bit of Texas, Chicago, and Indiana combined!)

This may be the beginning of a new career for Andrew!and to think, Chris missed all this because his bladder is the size of a peanut!On our way to aquarium we stopped for a photo op!Such a beautiful view!Can you find Nemo???Yeah, neither could we...We couldn't find our bus either!Fun dinner with Greg and Shannon! We love them!Chris couldn't make it into the picture, but he didn't care, he was just excited about his authentic Chicago hotdog!!Waiting to go home at O'hare. waiting, and waiting, and waiting...I don't know why Chris insists on being teffifying in every picture...

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Busy, busy, busy...

That is the most accurate description of our lives right now. We are so busy in fact, there is hardly time for any update, so here we go, brace yourself because you are about to get up to speed in 30 words or less... (you may have to fill in some blanks on your own...)...starting NOW!

Currently- collectively:

guitar lessons
youth group
worship team
job interviews
Financial peace

Preparing for:
new job

Chicago pictures coming soon...

count em! 30 exactly.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

My dog must be...

demon possessed! These past two weeks have been a nightmare when it comes to Owen. Up until this point he has been so sweet, relaxed (for a puppy), and obedient. We had been going strong with the crate training. He had managed to go weeks without going to the bathroom in his crate or the house, and he wasn't chewing things up. Until about 10 days ago...

At first he just started getting a little crazy, like spontaneously running laps around the room, over the furniture and across people's faces (sorry Alison). Then last Wednesday he managed to break out of his crate. I know what you are thinking, "Smart dog, he figured out how to open the latch." Um, no. Actually he broke the entire side panel off. God forbid he should use the door and make it easy for us to fix! So, as I open the door after a long day of work, I am greeted by Owen, ever so excitedly wagging his tail, in a mess of ashes from the fireplace, shredded paper, and fruit, yes, fruit. I have a beautiful, plum colored, ceramic fruit bowl that was recently stocked with bananas, clementines, limes, pears, avocados, and one beautiful mango. I must say, I was grateful to see that the bowl was still teetering on the edge of the bar and had not fallen to its doom, but every banana was eaten with peels strewn about the apartment. I guess Owen decided he wasn't a fan of the clementines and the limes, but you better believe he tried every one of them! He may not have eaten them, but he made sure to mark them all with his teeth prints. As I walked into the bedroom I saw some more fruit and a little piece of gnawed plastic, which I soon recognized as a pill bottle cap. I won't lie, my initial thought was, "oh good, he overdosed, now I won't have to kill him," until I realized that my dog really is smart, because the bottle of pills he decided to devour was Pepto-Bismol, which is only appropriate after you have eaten SIX bananas!

Now as bad as this sounds, this was only the first time he managed to break out of his crate. I will admit the second time wasn't as bad. But, our third incident happened when Chris decided to put him in the bathroom so that he wouldn't destroy the entire apartment. First, he managed to lock himself in there. Now, I don't know how, because we don't have one of those locks that you push the button. You have to turn out lock, but like I said, he is gifted. Second, he smeared poop all over the entire bathroom! I am pretty sure that Chris spent 2-3 hours trying to clean it up, until he had to leave for his guitar lesson and I took over.

Yesterday he pooped in his crate, but at least it was inside his crate and not smeared all over my things. After Chris reinforced it with some electrical tape he couldn't manage to wriggle his way out. Other than that, Owen was actually decent yesterday. I am just praying that when I walk in the house today after work, he will not be greeting me at the door.

It doesn't even seem possible that a dog who looks like this could be so crazy!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Congratulations are in order...

Our wonderful friends Caleb and Alison got engaged last night! We are so excited for them. This is going to be such a fun time in their life, and we are so happy to be here for it. They have been such an incredible blessing to us in our first year of marriage. Not only have they been some of our very closest friends, Caleb is the worship minister at our church, and he and Alison are both heavily involved in the youth ministry. We have all been on this church plant adveture together from Day 1, and we just don't know what we would do without them! We can't wait to see what God does in their lives and in their ministry, and we are so blessed to be a part of it. Congratulations guys! We love you!

They're hilarious.

Caleb and Alison loving our Owen the first day we got him! He was so small! (Alison doesn't love him as much now that he is big...)

Christmas at the Gaylord Texan. (also...the last day my hair was blonde)

Monday, February 11, 2008


is the name of our Youth Ministry. With the help of our students we came up with this name and the idea that we are God's canvases and He is continually painting his story into our lives. Yesterday was a big day for our youth ministry. We have been meeting with a group of eight kids on a regular basis since May. We have had such a blessed time getting to know these kids, and getting to see them grow in their fellowship with one another, and most importantly, in their relationship with Christ. Last night we had an evalgelistic/ outreach night where the kids were encouraged to bring all their friends. Each student was an important part of the planning for last night's event, and with all their hard work and the help of their parents it came together beautifully! We had a blast and our attendance increased by 100%!!! Woohoo! Most importantly our eight guests got to here about the love of Jesus Christ! I am so proud of our students, and I am so excited to see what God is going to paint in the coming weeks! Please pray that we will continue to see growth in the lives our core kids, and that they will continue to reach out to their friends and be a light in their schools and their communities. Also pray that all of the new faces we saw last night will begin to experience a relationship with Christ, and the beautiful picture that is the love of Christ, if they haven't already, and that those who have will continue to grow (hopefully with us!).

Friday, February 8, 2008

We have officially...

stepped foot into the world of blogging. More accuratlely, I have officially stepped foot into the world of blogging, and I am dragging Chris along for the ride. With the people most important to us scattered across the country, and only continuing to become more so, it seems this is a great way to keep you all (I guess I'm supposed to say y'all now) posted on what is going on with the Haneys.

As of tomorrow, we will have married for eight months and I will have lived in Texas for two and a half years. It's hard to believe how fast it has gone, and how much can change in such a short amount of time! As of right now, we have absolutely no idea what we will be doing after Chris finishes up his last few hours of school. We are trusting the Lord knows exactly what he is doing, especially since we don't have a clue! For the present time, however, Chris is busy as can be juggling school, the youth ministry, guitar students, and his job, while I am working at a HR consulting company doing data analysis, account management, and client care services. Though its not my dream job by any stretch of the imagination, it is where the Lord has placed me for this time, and I am grateful to have a job that helps to provide for our needs. The Lord is good, and he continues bless us in unexpected ways.

Also, since we have been married, we have added to our lives Owen, who was, unbeknownst to us, the sickest dog in the world when we first got him. Don't worry, he's a healthy as a horse now...