Visiting Lalibela

Visiting Lalibela

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Go Tell it on the Mountain- or the Plains!

To God be all the Glory!!

Click on the word Share below to view an article about what God's doing in our corner of the world.


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Christmas 2011

I can't believe Christmas will be here in less than 5 days. December has flown by and with it, our time to write our annual Christmas letter. To save time, everyone in blog land will get our annual update.

Highlights for this year include:
1. Family ski trip to Bozeman--I'm sure the first few days would have looked like chaos to those around us, as we tried to negotiate rentals, clothing and the FOOD associated with taking 9 kids skiing. After day 4, however, we had a system worked out, everyone had the appropriate snack in their pockets and we had successes on the hill.

2. Completed our first year of homeschooling everyone- By the end of the first year, I realized a need for another teacher. My friend, Valerie, joined us in August and we are amazed at how much everyone has learned this year. We are so thankful for the opportunity to homeschool our children. (Next year- we'll have high schoolers!!)

3. First family RV trip- In July, we ventured out on a 3 week RV trip. The trip included Camp Electric, in Nashville, for Elli, Janika and Kael, while the rest of us played in and around the Nashville Area. We then spent several days in the mountains of North Carolina, before driving to Durango, Colorado. While in Durango, Mike and the "big kids" spent 4 days backpacking at 10,000 + feet. The "Littles" and I spent 4 days playing at the Durango, KOA and learning things like how to pull the awning in during high wind storms. The RV is now for We loved the adventure but realized the RV we chose was just a tad bit tight for a family of 11.

4. Summit Energy Services- Mike continues to love running Summit. We marvel each day, as it continues to grow. What started out as a little business, in our garage, with six men, now has over 160 employees, a huge shop and two additional office spaces. God has truly blessed us with an amazing business, great men and women who choose to work at Summit and opportunities for continued growth in the next year. I am blessed to watch Mike lead this team, each day.

5. Activities- Our days with the kids are full. This past year, Elli, Janika, Kael and Micah ran track for the MIddle School. Elli and Layne participated in a summer play. Kael, Janika, Micah and Leah ran cross-country. Gabe and Gavin ran elementary cross-country and played soccer with Layne joining them on the soccer field. Gavin and Elli participated in the local Christmas play and Micah, Kael, Janika and Elli played basketball. Layne Belle loves her piano lessons and the big girls continue to love to sing together, with Jani on guitar. Mike and I love taking in all the events, and realize that, at 40, our days of actually beating the kids in ANYTHING are just about gone.

6. Mission Trip- In November, Mike, Kael, Elli, Janika and Micah spent 12 days in Ethiopia with Childrens Hopechest. They served with an amazing team, loving on kids at 4 different care points and taking in a small sight seeing tour on the side. The younger kids and I stayed on ground support here and realized how very much we LOVE the noise of our great big family.

That's our year in a nutshell. As we head into the Christmas weekend, we are so thankful for the friends and family who have come along side us with prayer support this past year. We are thankful for the family God has given us, the business HE has given us and especially for the gift He has given each one of us in the birth of HIS son, Jesus.

Merry Christmas from the Sweeney Family!

Monday, December 12, 2011

And to think we could have said, "No" to this!

This morning, as we were getting ready for church (notice the big sisters in the bathroom-sorry girls), it hit me...We could have said, "No, " when we were asked 6.5 years ago to be our LB's foster family. We could have said, "No," when she came up for adoption. Instead, we said, "Yes," and get to see this sweet face every day.

We have had the opportunity, again and again to say "NO". We've had people encourage us to say, "NO" but each time we've prayed about a decision and said, "Yes!" God has blessed our socks off. The very first thing we were told, after we found out we were expecting triplets was, "You can reduce this pregnancy. It may be really hard on you." Instead, and thankfully, my husband answered immediately, "These are our babies." When we felt God nudging us to adopt Gavin and said "Yes" God brought the coolest little boy into our home. He thanks God every night for "my wonderful family." He radiates.

When we felt God nudging us to adopt again, many people advised us to say "NO". I'm so thankful that we said "Yes."
At the same time, God put the idea of Summit on Mike's mind. It would have been much easier to say "NO" and continue to work for someone else, yet we now have over 160 employees- so very thankful again that we said, "Yes."

Today in church, our pastor said, "If you were the only person on earth, Christ would have died just for you!" He had the opportunity to say, "NO!!" but he said a resounding, "Yes."

I wonder what God is asking you to do today.