Goodbye 2015

Wow, 2015 might have been one of the hardest years of my life. It comes close to our 2014 with Jayden’s NICU time. I’ve been wanting to write a post on last year for a couple weeks now, but I haven’t been able to emotionally come to do it. There are two specific situations that have made 2015 so hard.

#1 Move to Tampa
Jeez, this move has been so much harder than we thought it would be. We still believe we made the right decision, but I think we thought everything would be easier for us. Never did we think it would be this difficult for Josh to find a job.
We miss Austin so much! Austin is an amazing city with amazing food and an amazing culture. The main thing we miss about Austin is our friends. We made so many great friends there and it is so hard to leave them. It’s not easy building deep friendships and we have to start over in a new city. We are so thankful for the relationships that we have made so far!

#2 Grandpa
This is what has made it so difficult to write another post. My grandparents have been some of my number one supporters with my blog and my life. They had so much feedback and it was great. My grandma thinks I should write children’s books and my grandpa would always ask where Josh was in my blog posts (haha he had a good point)! They represent everything that I want my marriage to be. My grandma is a great example of a godly wife and it took me so long to recognize that.
A couple days after my birthday, on December 15th, my grandpa went to be with Jesus. He had a lot of health issues and he didn’t want to live like that anymore. When my dad told me about his last few weeks, it brought tears to my eyes. Hearing about all of the highs and the lows brought me through so many emotions. He was in so much pain, but he showed everyone God’s love! He shared scripture to the nurses and doctors and continued to fight for a life worthy living (on this earth and in Heaven).
There are lots of stories of his last few days, but I want to focus on what I learned about Grandma and Grandpa while they were raising my aunt, uncle, and dad. It was so much fun talking with my aunt, uncle, and dad about my grandparents while we were at my grandpa’s graveside ceremony in Minnesota. They always followed where God was leading. They moved a ton, but it was always for ministry. My grandparents created so many awesome experiences for their family. They had experiences that a normal family wouldn’t have. They created a space for people stay and their home was truly a place open to those in need. They showed their family what it looked like to be servant leaders. I want to raise my family just like my grandparents. It has been so encouraging to hear stories like the ones I heard in Minnesota during our move. Like my grandma use to say (or what my uncle told me she said) is to not look at our past, but to welcome our future. That sounds way more exciting!
I could say so much more about my grandpa, but the important thing is that he is such an amazing man and has taught me so much about loving Jesus and family. Through my grandpa’s death, the Gospel has been made more real to me. Grandpa shows so much hope in his future with Jesus and his confidence in eternal life was amazing. It makes me so thankful that Jesus died so that we can have a relationship with him and live forever.

Jesus, my grandpa was really looking forward to meeting you! Show him the best of eternity. We still miss him here, but I’m excited to see him happy and painless again.

My grandpa has been such an inspiration to forever live by John 10:10. “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”

My uncle wrote his obituary and it is so amazing! Take a look…
http://www.howeandyockey.com/obit_disp.php?obit_id=988

Our view at the cemetery in Minnesota. So beautiful and perfect!

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