Claimed by God: Tristan, My New Brother

December 15, 2010
Tristan's adoption and baptism

This weekend, Tristan became a permanent member of God's family and ours!

We welcomed Tristan into our family and God’s this weekend. First, God claimed Him as His child through baptism.


God claimed Tristan as His own through baptism.

Then my parents adopted him as their son, and the rest of us, as our brother. It was beautiful (Read a generic copy of the baptism and adoption ceremony)!

Promises to Tristan

We all made promises to Tristan to love Him and be His family forever.

After journeying through adoption with my parents, I am awestruck by the grand measures that God took to adopt us as His children. I tried to convey this in writing a song for Tristan performed with my brother Nathan during the ceremony.

As I prepare for Christmas–wrapping presents, singing Christmas carols, baking cookies, I consider the preparations God made to send His son to Earth–finding God-fearing parents, teaching Jesus how to be a human, telling His son that He would be given life only to have it taken away in the cruelest of deaths, reminding Him that it would be worth it all in the end.

God planned before the creation of the world to claim us as His children. Our old sinful selves are buried, and we have been made alive with Christ to be eternal members of His family. That’s incredible!


Treasuring an Unconditional Compliment

December 9, 2010

It’s not too hard for me to compliment a shirt or new haircut, but how often do I simply compliment my friends for who they are rather than what they have changed?

I considered this yesterday after receiving a simple compliment. Two words. “You’re beautiful.” Not “I like your new jeans,” or “Your hair looks nice curly.”

smiling conversation

A genuine compliment inspires smiles.

It’s not that I don’t appreciate these compliments, but they are conditional. They beg questions like, “Will I still be desirable if I wear my old jeans or tie my hair back?”An unconditional compliment is not dependent on anything else for it to be true. It is a treasure.

My friend Amber is doing a blog challenge during the month of December, and yesterday she challenged us to bring joy to others. So along this theme, I invite you today to give someone an unconditional compliment. It may be the best present they receive all year.

Spotless Cloak

December 7, 2010

Barren, winter trees
carry tiny flakes of white
crystalline pipe cleaner branches.

Parched, lifeless flurries enbalm each branch
reflecting the sparse morning sunlight against
the pale gray sky.

The spotless cloak falls away when I touch it,
disturbing its peaceful slumber,
beauty left best for the eye.