Verse to Consider: Micah 6:8,
“He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?”
Where we left off…
It’s been quite some time since our last update. If you happened to read our last blog, then you’ll know that we took a temporary hiatus while we awaited the birth of our baby. Thank you for your patience! We’re overjoyed to announce that on September 8th, 2018, our lives were blessed by the arrival of Benaiah Reuben McRae:
We’re in love. Samantha was a champ and gave birth after 12 hours of active labor. There were no complications and Benaiah has been a healthy boy since, praise the Lord! For all the prayers and the help we’ve received along the way, we are truly grateful. Thank you.
The following weeks
A few days before Samantha gave birth, we had just moved our belongings into our new apartment. We were fortunate enough to have family come and visit for the birth and stay to help us with the baby and get things unpacked in our new home. Just 6 days after Benaiah was born, Samantha and I celebrated our 5th anniversary (Woohoo!). And after 5 years of sharing space with others in one form or another, it’s truly a wonderful thing to finally have a space we can call our own 🙂
It’s probably unnecessary for me to say that the following weeks were filled with many new experiences and very little sleep. And yet, Samantha and I were faced with another challenge. Samantha’s sister was due to be married just one month after Benaiah was born, and so we made the tough decision to take our month old baby on a week long trip to Alaska. Fortunately, we had a lot of people praying for us and received plenty of good traveling advice and God definitely covered us in grace. Benaiah slept almost the entire 16 hours of flight!
The wedding was spectacular and we had a blast seeing all of our Alaska friends and family!
Unfortunately, our trip didn’t exactly end on a high note. During the last few days of our travels, I (Jacob) caught a cold and on our (4) plane rides back to Florida, my cold turned into a painful ear infection. To make matters worse, I was scheduled to step back into my role with Emmaus and teach a lecture on the book of Micah shortly after getting back. I promptly visited a clinic upon our return, and a couple pill prescriptions and 3 shots on the butt later, I was well enough to give my lecture.
Now that we’re home again, Samantha and I have been working to find some semblance of a rhythm in life. Samantha is still taking it easy (not that it’s easy) and is doing what work she can for Emmaus at home, while I return to my normal teaching duties. It’s definitely been a strange experience figuring out what parts of our old routines no longer fit our current circumstances. Despite this, it’s hard to express the amount of joy that has come with getting to know Benaiah, and even harder to imagine how we ever lived without him.
Concerning Emmaus, we are continuing to work our way through the Old Testament Prophets with our students, having just finished our first class on the book of Isaiah. I absolutely love this portion of Scripture! The fact that we have these incredible accounts of God dialoguing directly with man for the purposes of pursuing his people with love and mercy is incredibly special. Emotive and provocative, the Old Testament Prophets express the depths of sin and depravity, while highlighting the glorious heights of God’s love in ways that are unseen in any other works of literature. It’s been an absolute joy and privilege to spend my recent days studying and teaching from these books. Having recently given my lecture on Micah, I’m currently preparing my next two lectures on the book of Daniel. This will be my first time giving 6 hours worth of lecture on a single book, so I would greatly appreciate your prayers!
We wanted to give you, our supporters, an idea of how this school is impacting our students, so here is a short video we shot of one of our students, asking them a few questions about what they’ve learned with Emmaus.
– The foremost on our minds is a family member who is suffering from serious and unexpected medical conditions. It’s been an incredibly rough time for them and has weighed very heavily on the hearts of those around them. Please pray for healing, comfort, and guidance.
– Samantha and I recently took our car in for some necessary repairs, and it has put a very large strain on our finances.
– We’ve decided to push our luck and make another long journey with our baby 🙂 please pray as we make a 12+ hour drive over Thanksgiving holiday.
– Please continue to pray for Samantha and I as try to figure out this parenting thing while we jump back into managing our jobs and schedules.