Sermon Shavings: Death of Stephen

Somethings are interesting, but get cut from sermon notes for the sake of a sermon not being a mere commentary and so that the sermon isn’t two hours long.

In my research on Acts 6:8-7:60 recently I read about a guy named Ben Witherington who noticed a parallel between the death of Stephen and the death of Jesus. Which I love because in John 15:18-21 Jesus says his followers will be persecuted like he has been persecuted.

Check out these 8 ways Stephen’s death closely mirrors the death of his Savior, Jesus.

  1. Both are on trial before Sanhedrin (Mark 14:53 /Acts 6:12; 7:1)
  2. There are false witnesses against them (Mark 14:56–57; Matt. 26:60–61; Acts 6:13)
  3. Questions concerning the destruction of the temple are asked (Mark 14:58; Matt. 26:61; Acts 6:14)
  4. Charge of blasphemy (Mark 14:64, Matt. 26:65; Acts 6:11)
  5. High priest’s ask if accusations are true. (Mark 14:61; Matt. 26:63; Acts 7:1)
  6. Jesus commits his Spirit to the Father, Stephen commits his to Jesus (Luke 23:46; Acts 7:59)
  7. Both cry out with a loud voice (Mark 15:34, Matt. 27:46; Mark 15:37; Acts 7:60)
  8. Both pray for their enemies forgiveness (Luke 23:34; Acts 7:60)

Homecoming Parade

We love us a good parade, and the K-State Homecoming parade is the best one ever! Kids get to trick or treat at the stores in Aggieville beforehand. This year they were a cat, a mouse and a Tasmanian devil (the real animal, not the cartoon)

K-State Homecoming Parade 2015

Brian’s idea obviously:

K-State Homecoming Parade 2015

It’s funny that cat is the generic college girl costume…she’s growing toooooo fast!!

K-State Homecoming Parade 2015

Why don’t they also sell mouse ears in the Dollar Spot at Target? I had to make these suckers.

Oct 2015

There’s no argument this is the best costume out there. I’m so stinking impressed!! He’s is a porta-potty!! 
K-State Homecoming Parade 2015

Girls have ways of entertaining themselves

K-State Homecoming Parade 2015

Then it’s parade time!

K-State Homecoming Parade 2015

The sororities and frats all have a theme each year. This year they all had a century. Annie’s sorority was the future. I’m biased, but even if I wasn’t, she was the best dressed of the group!

K-State Homecoming Parade 2015

I mean really, glitter lips!! K-State Homecoming Parade 2015
Sadie the cow is in every parade! 
K-State Homecoming Parade 2015

The floats are the kind you picture in a parade, hours of work goes into these 
K-State Homecoming Parade 2015

And it’s totally worth it! 
K-State Homecoming Parade 2015
K-State Homecoming Parade 2015

Chris! (we saw Emily too but she was on the other side :(
K-State Homecoming Parade 2015

Raising a glass to crazy (normal)

When Brian told me 9 years ago that he got a call from a pastor in Kansas about working at a church, I said “People live there?”

And I was totally serious.

Now, not only do we live in Kansas, we live in small town Kansas. There’s nothing sexy about living in small town Kansas.

But there’s no place else I would want to live. We love our town more than we ever thought you could love a place. We swear it’s the best hidden gem in the US. Not only for the town, but also the people God has brought into our lives in this town.

But still, no one would look at our little life and say, “Wow, that’s exciting!” or “What am amazing story!”

And we are cool with that.

That’s one of the reasons when we heard this song it resonated.

His newest CD has been on repeat in the car all week. Chris and Morgan have known about Ben Rector for who knows how long, but they are infinity cooler than us, so it’s not surprising. He’s a self proclaimed artist who is a Christian but not a Christian artist. Check him out if you haven’t!

And then we can raise a glass together…but let’s do it early cause I need to be in bed by 9.


Berkley doesn’t like to eat the crust of the pizza, but I’m way too cheap to let that happen. So I tell her to eat it. Brian however, since he’s funner than me (and so is my friend Brandi who does this too! :) ), instead cuts off the crust and told her it was a breadstick. She gobbles it right up now…

Sept 2015

Who would have ever thought a UPC label could be so cool!?

Sept 2015

Random of the girls when they scored the leftover communion bread from Kristin! Sept 2015

Our kids know exactly who the Tooth Fairy is…and they let her know that they prefer when she comes at night and not when they have to pretend to go back to sleep in the morning after they remind her. So she set an alarm this last time.

Oct 2015

Berkley’s witch. I especially love the noseOct 2015

She was sad her clam died…Oct 2015

Crazy hair day: donut on a plateOct 2015

She learned the hard way…(she wasn’t pumped about taking this picture at first and Beckham told her “Berkley, you will want to look back on this later and laugh at yourself, you should take the picture.” :) Oct 2015

Our littlestsa

Inventure Monday: Rocky Ford

These are actually old photos that were neglected last spring. When Sadie heads over to Bate’s Dance Studio I often take the B’s (Beckham and Berkley) to adventure somewhere. This day we headed to Rocky Ford Fishing Area.


Many many years ago there was a power plant that used the dam to generate electricity.

Boozer likes to find nooks she can fit in. No idea what this was, but for now it’s a Boozer nook.



When they inventor they always keep their nets close. You never know when you will need a net.




It’s like a dream come true

Well, almost.

Berkley tells us her reoccurring dream is to have a real house that’s a bounce house.

So for her birthday in August of course she asked for a bounce house for her party!

Aug 2015

Aug 2015

Aug 2015

This pic cracks me up!

Aug 2015

Aug 2015

She may be 6, but she’ll always be the Little One. 
Aug 2015

Stole this idea from Christine and they made these crowns. They don’t last, but they are super fun to sticker up, so it was a great craft!
Aug 2015

At six Berkley is:

The most extroverted person in our family. She can out talk the best of them and never seems to need alone time. Until the rest of us do and it’s forced on her!

Her love language is touch. She just wants cuddles!

Still loves Doc McStuffins, playing school with SP, and Legos with Becks.

Her favorite meal is: snacks.

Is insanely creative and loves crafts, drawing and coloring and being read to.

Told us recently she had a “Mom question.” What’s the difference between a mom question and a dad question? “A dad question is if it’s about adventuring. A mom question is if you need anything!”



Just some random photos as of late:

Aug 2015

They teamed up for a lemonade stand this summerAug 2015

First day of school! SP had Mrs. M and Berkley prayed all summer she would get her too and God answered that prayer with a yes! Aug 2015

And these two are in the same class!Aug 2015

AND Daisy and SP too! It was the trifecta, they all got exactly what they hoped for! God blessed us with some great teachers and classes!! Aug 2015

Deer in our back yard

We had a taste test between Ghirardelli and Dove dark chocolate with sea salt. Ghirardelli won unanimously. 

Crazies each drew a house randomly

Big chairs for little kids

Sister love makes my heart happy. a

Get it? The girls are the H and Becks is the star…they make the Astros logo! Kids Astros
There’s a trail behind our house (hence the deer in the yard) that is our fav to hike. There are really cool stone tables along it. 
Lion Trail MHK
Topeka is 45 min away, they have a great Children’s Discovery Center and an incredible China exhibit! This is Berkley and Beckham after eating some authentic Cat Street Tacos. 
Discovery Center Topeka

Sades was in the parade

Discovery Center Topeka

Shocker. More Astros.


USA Today made this faux front page on Oct 21, the day in the future Marty and Doc went to in Back to the Future 2. They made it look just like the one in the movie, so when we opened the paper here’s what we saw! USA Today is now the coolest newspaper EVER!! aBrian was in charge. There are definitely two girls who are upside down in the hammock. 

I’m going to stash this picture to secretly look at the next time they can’t get along…:)

Astros Playoffs Photoshoot

Arm parties, hot air balloons and blow outs


This is what Berkley’s arm looks like at all times. She calls it her “arm party.” If anyone needs a hair tie at any time, she’s your girl. I taught both our girls to keep hair ties on them cause it’s how I got one of my best friends.

Freshman year of high school. Biology. This girl sitting near me needed a hair tie and asked me if I had one. I did and I gave it to her. That’s how it started, and I can’t imagine my life without her still today. So they keep stocked, cause I don’t want our girls to miss out on a friendship like Carolyn and I have just cause they don’t have a hair tie! :) She’s drop dead gorgeous, wicked smart, so much fun, super generous and did I mention beautiful?!


Carolyn, her mom and I celebrated Carolyn’s birthday with a sunrise hot air balloon ride!





AugustOur pilot looked just like Travis Shanahan!!


The venue for the balloon was close to Slovang, a little Dutch town! We decided it was worth seeing, once! 


Then birthday brunch at Lucky’s, amazing!! 
Why does our hair look so great? Cause there’s this amazing thing I’ve heard of but never experienced before now: blow outs.

Then there’s the sushi. We ate it every day. Sugarfish’s sushi is my favorite food in the history of ever. 

While Carolyn was at work one day (yes, birthday girl worked and we played…the irony was not lost on us, I told you she was amazing…) she had Cathy and I go on the TMZ Celebrity Tour of LA!


We learned that rumor has it if Louis Vuitton doesn’t sell something at full price, instead of putting it on sale, they burn it! August

We had a great time celebrating a wonderful girl!!

Brian brought the kids to the airport when I got back in their robot outfits. The signs they made were the best!


SP’s says “You are my battery, I am low on battery”August


Kansas Day Trips: Council Grove


More small town Kansas exploring. This time it was Council Grove. The only thing we knew about this town was that there was a cave. So off we went!

First stop: climbing on the garden tank. That’s what Brian calls them. I’d never heard that before. But it makes sense…



Then we hit up the tree General Custer slept under during the Civil War. We were expecting a tree. It’s a stump they put a roof over. 

But right beside it was the oldest old school playground we’ve ever been to!

This thing could teeter so far I thought we would tip. It’s on this concrete circle, but not attached. I wasn’t convinced we wouldn’t flip. 

Once we realized that we had to scare the kids.




Old school merry-go-round!


Real see-saws. IMG_3999

I’m all about real see-saws, but honestly, someone cries when we play on them. every. single. time. 

The swings had wood seats and were wicked tall. Meaning you could swing incredibly high. IMG_4018

And this slide. You can tell how I feel about it. You get air, and there’s no sides!


I went down. Once.


There’s an old bell labeled “Old Bell”


And we found the cave! It looks like you can go in in this pic, but in reality Brian’s standing at the back. It was more of a cove. 

This tin man in front of the Ray’s Apple Market topped the list for me! That’s just cool. IMG_4077

So this town loves putting tree stumps under pavilions. Here’s another one! IMG_4081

And no joke, a third tree stump they put a roof over. To put this in perspective, this town is only 2 square miles! IMG_4084

Really fun town to explore, not a repeat, but definitely worth hitting up for the afternoon!