Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Car Crashes into our House

This is a re-post from Carra's personal blog about the Thanksgiving Day crash...
So it has been a couple of weeks since Thanksgiving.  So far, we have been visited by a structural engineer, two city inspectors, contractors and assessors.

Here's our living room right now.  As you can see in the right side of the picture, the wall has no longer been merely boarded up, but framed for becoming a "real wall."

This morning a city of Greensboro inspector came to check over the work.  We have been so blessed and impressed with how quickly the city has been to check over work.  And Paul Davis Restoration (PDR), our contractor, has been great to work with and accommodating to do the work around our family's needs.

It looks like we will only have to move out of the house one more time (when they refinish the floors) but that will be longer than the original hotel living of six days. I think we may move between two hotels just so we can bother the maximum number of guests and hotel employees!  (Just kidding!)  But it does look like we will be back in the living room and dining room sometime mid-January.  As far as the outside masonry - no idea how long that will be.

Here's some other photos of our lives right now. This pile of broken pieces include a cedar chest that has a rug full of glass laying across it.  It was a really nice cedar chest filled with baby blankets made by my mom, my grandma, my great-aunt and my great grandmother.  Those precious things were the hardest to see amongst the rubble.

But PDR is doing their best to clean them and we will be keeping them (and not using them on future babies just in case of glass embedded somewhere).  The white object is a stand we used in our wedding (almost 12 years ago).  Neat thing though...the table (it's hard to tell it used to be a table) is also laying halfway on the bottom of the lamp was directly in front of the window.  It was (obviously) completely shattered and the items on top of it were thrown across the room.  Everything in the corner (from the table to the cedar chest to the globe) were damaged or completely obliterated.  ...except...

Here's a photo of our living room about 10 days before the accident.  We had decorated for Thanksgiving and Gracie wanted to take some photos.  Isn't that awesome?  It has definitely helped with the insurance situations.  If you look in the right hand corner, you'll see the globe, lamp, glass top table and cedar chest that you see the parts of in the above photo.  Notice right behind the lamp, you'll see our wedding picture.

Our wedding picture.  It was on the table.  It must have been launched into a pile of baby blankets,the loveseat, into the pile of dirt from the peace lilies that sailed across the room or some other soft place.  It's scratched up but not broken.

I don't know what to say - but it makes me happy to see our wedding picture still in tact.  In spite of being in direct harm, God chose to keep it unbroken.  It's just a photo.  But there is something extra sweet that it was protected.

God protected our family from physical harm.  He protected the gentleman in the SUV from injury.  He has blessed us with insurance and favor from city officials, contractors.  He has poured our blessings, prayers and gifts from neighbors, friends, church family, home school community, family members and fellow Cru staff.  We are extremely grateful.

Thank you for your prayers.

Love, Carra

P.S. Next time, I'll try to share how we are making our den into living room and dining room among it's previous roles as home school room, play space, my office area and meeting space. 

Saturday, October 6, 2012

A beautiful morning

Over 100 students are spread out across the camp right now (Saturday morning) having time with the Lord. For some, this morning devotional/quiet time/prayer time at Fall Retreat is their first introduction to the concept of time set apart for spending with God.

As Gracie, Faith and I walked back to our cabin just now, we passed this holy scene. The beautiful morning, the lake, the cross in the distance and students scattered across the bank. How grateful I am to have a relationship with Christ. How grateful I am that my children see the devotion and desire of these "cool young people" for the living God. How grateful I am that God has given me the privilege of helping to lead these college students to a closer walk with our Savior.

Love, Carra

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Fall Retreat Tomorrow

Fall Retreat is tomorrow through Sunday
Right now we have 112 students registered a close to 1/3 are freshmen!!

Getting freshmen plugged in and connected to community is a critical piece in having a movement of Christ over time.
It is super-encouraging to the see the number of students that are coming to this weekend.

Prayer requests:
  • Speaker (Mark Valentine from Appalachian State) will challenge students in their walks with Christ.
  • Community to develop (students from four different campuses)
  • Students will seriously consider spending their spring breaks on mission trips. 
  • Safety (paintball and a photo scavenger hunt in the dark will be involved)
  • Great weather (the forecast looks great so far)
  • The Christ would be glorified!!!
It is such a priviledge to spend this time with the students.  My parents are keeping Zade (so he won't be completely worn out). And Gracie and Faith are will be staying with us for the whole weekend.  We packed their bags tonight and they are just beyond excited. 

What are they looking forward to the most?
Going to Costco to buy snacks (who doesn't love Costco?)
Saturday night dance party (the theme is hippies and hipsters but I think the girls are going as a purple ballerina-Faith and Joan of Arc-Gracie)
Faith exclaimed tonight she couldn't wait to live in a real cabin.
They love students, and the students love them.  Sometimes I can hardly believe the blessed life God has given us in this ministry.  Thank you for your love, support and prayers!

Love, Carra

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Cru introduces Study Abroad!

This is a pioneer program where students can get get college credit at the same time as they provide "workers for the harvest" with a team of local and short term international missionaries with Cru. Pray for this to be an effective tool for bringing more laborers to the critical harvest of the colleges of the world! 

Pass this on to students you think would consider applying. cruabroad.com/

Love, Pete and Carra

Friday, June 15, 2012

Over 80,000 praying - join us?


As we wrote earlier this week - we have a unique opportunity to under gird the Olympians and the Campus Crusade for Christ/Athletes in Action staff with prayer.

In addition to the Olympics, there are some very exciting prayer opportunities and an interactive way to connect to those.  When you visit the site (http://prayeurope.com/prayer-projects/), you can see what current prayer needs are in Europe and Russia.  You can chose to pause right there and pray for one of the initiatives or opportunities.  Then you can click "I prayed."

Explore the site to see other prayer requests and a ongoing list of answered prayers.

For His glory,
Pete and Carra

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Olympic Sized Prayer

I love being a part of Campus Crusade for Christ!  One reason is the ability and the drive that Cru has to reach all people - going to remote areas of the world but also to some of the most crowded.  What an opportunity God has opened up for Athletes in Action (the sports ministry component of Cru) to be a part of the Olympics! As chaplains for the Olympics, CCC/AIA staff have a wonderful opportunity to develop relationships with athletes from all over the world.

While the International Olympic Committee forbids proselytizing, Carl (Campus Crusade for Christ Athletes in Action staff member) says there are plenty of opportunities to have spiritual conversations. Sometimes the hard realities of the Olympic competition lead athletes to seek out
answers with chaplains.“We’re mainly in a service position, but we can answer any questions they ask.”  Pray for divine appointments with non-believing athletes from around the globe.

Much prayer, preparation, planning and resources go into making Athletes in Action’s outreach efforts at the Olympic Games a smooth success, and the 2012 project in London will require no less. Regardless of what shape it takes, the work of the official chaplains as well as the 160-plus additional staff who will be working in London all boils down to one goal: spreading the gospel of Jesus
Christ to the world.

Want to be a part of this?  Join in with prayer!
3000 people are needed to pray for 3 to 4 athletes who will be competing this summer.  Wouldn't be awesome to be a part of a team of people who will cover every single Olympian in prayer?  Here's where you can learn more (http://olympics.athletesinaction.org/prayer-strategy/)

For His glory,
Pete and Carra

Friday, March 30, 2012

Hosting the Nations

Students from all over the world will be at our house in approximately 100 minutes!  I got ahead of myself trying to get the yard in shape, but that ended up being a blessing.  I'm making sweet tea and lemonade and about to hide approximately 150 eggs (12 of which are Resurrection Eggs).

Please pray for the 15 students from Korea, China, Japan, Russia, etc. that they will be drawn to the Savior who gave His life that we may have life.

So that everyone knows someone who truly follows Christ...


Friday, March 16, 2012

Mixing family, fun & ministry...again

I'm spending this weekend planting flowers, adding mulch and gathering the thousands (maybe slight exaggeration) of toys from across the backyard. This isn't just the spring boost - we're hosting a party!

One week from today, we are hosting an egg hunt / tea party for the international students (mostly girls) from UNCG. Our kids love the internationals and the internationals love them! Since Easter is the perfect segue to explaining the Gospel, we're making our own set of resurrection eggs. What an awesome opportunity to explain to our girls the sacrifice of Christ as we assemble the eggs. Then for them to be excited to help explain the symbols to our guests...Wow.

Some days it's really hard to juggle all the hats I wear in ministry and motherhood. Today, they're fitting just fine.

Please join us in prayer that God will make this a life changing afternoon!

That all may hear,

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Disturbing Trend

Last summer, we were made aware of some disturbing developments at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN.  We have several friends who are on staff with Cru there.  They had been working with the legal counsel of Cru and asked all of us to pray that they would be allowed to remain on campus.  There is another university in our MidSouth region (I've been asked not to share which one) right here in NC that is also considering changin university policies as Vanderbult has.

A very articulate senior has laid out the issues well, I invite you to read about this situation.  We are already experiencing limitations to our Cru movements by several campuses here in Greensboro, Winston-Salem and High Point.  Not as extreme as what is happening at Vanderbilt, but disturbing trends none the less. Some of our campuses will no longer allow us to approach a student and initiate a conversation unless he or she has already indicated some interest by attending a meeting or filling out a contact card.  This limits the evangelism to students who are already interested in Cru.

Please pray.  We are truly in a battle for the hearts and minds of young people.  The enemy wants to further tie our hands, but we know that Christ will be proclaimed!  Pray for us to have favor with the administration of all 20+ campuses in the Triad.  Pray for Vanderbilt to continue to allow christian ministries (like Cru) to exist on campus with integrity of their leadership.

Love, Pete and Carra

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Preview Weekend

We long to have our lives count for Christ and bring great glory to God. The students invited to this conference are those we have seen aligned with that vision in their own life.

This conference (Preview Weekend) helps juniors and seniors slow down and get God’s perspective on decisions about life, career and calling.  They will hear from speakers that can give great wisdom and perspective from God’s word and their own experience.

We believe that God sends each of us out of college as laborers for Christ. That’s a huge part of why Campus Crusade exists on the college campuses. This conference is a key part of becoming a lifetime laborer.  I (Carra) am very excited that I get to be our campus representative for the Triad this year.  Last year, Zade was less than a month old, so a full-tilt weekend was not feasible.  This is one of the best conferences I have attended.  The students are passionately seeing what God would have them to do with their lives.  It is a privilege to spend an entire weekend with students whose hearts are so attuned to making their lives count in the eternal!

Students are registering now.  Staff are preparing for their time with these young people. This conference is next Friday (Jan 28-30).  Please pray for the students coming, for the staff who are preparing and that we would see God raise up laborers for His harvest!

Love, Carra

Friday, January 13, 2012

Sweet time with Christ

A part of my "job" with Campus Crusade for Christ is taking an extended time with the Lord on a monthly basis.  It is a wise requirement because ministry can easily become an overwhelming list of "to do's."  My monthly extended time with the Lord is always scheduled with Pete so he can watch the little ones and give me the freedom to go off to a coffee shop (or Chick fil A) for the mid-morning. I look forward to these "Dates with Jesus" and it is always filling to my soul.

For my regular life...I usually have at least 20 to 30 minutes of Bible reading and prayer each morning before the rest of the house wakes up.  God has been so gracious to meet me in these (almost daily) times with Him even though they are brief.  This morning while the rest of the house slumbered, I woke early and instead of  taking a half an hour and then quickly onto the laundry, breakfast, email, etc. ...I lingered....

...I didn't even mean to linger... I had glanced at a magazine article left in the bathroom.  The Holy Spirit used that one snippet of perspective to send me down a precious, convicting and encouraging time with Him.  I went to the Word, I lingered in my prayer journal.  I was drawn to listen to some worship music that I had never heard before.  I have just enjoyed some sweet "extended time" with Christ that was uncoordinated, unstructured (by me at least!) and unexpected.

What a gift this chilly January morning. I just wanted to share that with you!

Love, Carra

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Listen in...

Encounter 2011

As the conference came to an end students were given the opportunity to share with others from their campus what they learned. An international student from EKU (Eastern Kentucky University) shared, “I am not a Christian. I am from Japan, and in my country we do not care about religion. I came to Encounter and now I have many friends. I feel such a strong connection with you all and I see how great God is. I want to continue to learn more about God and Christianity.”
Encounter 2011 culminated on New Year’s Eve with a time of prayer as students prayed to be “the finishers”, the generation that fulfills the Great Commission taking the gospel to ends of the earth. 

Listen to some of the talks from the conference that brought about these experiences...