Monday, January 29, 2007

And I haven't even turned 32 yet!!

Travis and I had big plans to go to the doctor together tomorrow (Tuesday) with Samuel and watch the ultrasound as one big happy family to find out the sex of our new baby!! However, I was disappointed when Trav came to tell me that I had the date of the appointment wrong. Rather than Tuesday, the appointment was this morning (Monday), so he wasn't going to be able to come with me. I felt bad that our "family plan" wasn't going to work out. Now, it was just me going to the doctor with Samuel to watch the ultrasound by ourselves. Yippee!! Sounds on the table and Sam running all around the office and pulling medical paraphenalia out of drawers. I can't wait! When I got to the office, I found out that there never WAS an ultrasound scheduled to begin with and that it would be scheduled for a few weeks from now!! I've been a little mixy since we returned from Romania. I'm surprised I even went to the right doctor's office! Thankfully, everything is working out okay and maybe we can still go to the doctor in a few weeks as a family. I think I need a nice warm cup of tea and a nap. How about you? =)

Saturday, January 27, 2007

new baby moving

For just about the last week I've been feeling our new baby move inside of me. What an incredible feeling! It's been a little more special for me this time. I'm not sure why. I've had a lot more fears of miscarriage with this baby than with Samuel, so I'm sure that has something to do with it. I just wanted to share these verses that are so special to me. Psalm 139:14-18 "I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works . . . in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them. How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! How great is the sum of them. If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee." Isn't it great to know that God's thoughts about us are countless?
I go to the doctor this coming Tuesday, and we might get to find out the sex of the baby...yay!! I'm not sure if they're going to do an ultrasound or not. We'll let you know!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Romania Trip -- Part 2

The second half of our trip to Romania was busy and profitable. Thursday we spent with our teammate Felicia Oana. She showed us around the city of Oradea, a city of around 300,000 people. We enjoyed seeing the old, historic buildings and interesting sites. Particularly interesting was the university in Oradea. She took us on campus where we got to see the opportunities first hand. The university is one of about 30,000 students. The Oanas have a specific burden for this group of young people hoping to have help reaching out to them. The ministry would entail weekly Bible studies and activities on and off campus. What a great opportunity is here. We also got to go to the Oana's church (Maranatha Baptist) later that evening for their mid-week Bible study. That was a good opportunity to spend with the young people and share our testimonies with them.

Friday was busy as we visited a children's hospital in Oradea where some abandoned babies are kept. We got to hold and feed these adorable babies. This was a bitter sweet experience as it was hard to leave them in such lonely and not-so-ideal conditions. I don't think we'll soon forget that experience. That night we went to another Romanian house for dinner. Luci and Nellu were so gracious and more than filled our stomachs. We had three courses, and each one was enough to fill us. We kindly ate the first course, telling them how much we liked it. It was a sort of breakfast pizza with veggies and chesse on it along with cheese-stuffed veggies. Then, to our surprise, here comes the second course, which was meat and potatoes. Even though I was stuffed from the first course, I had to try the potatoes (you know, potatoes are the reason I'm going to Romania). They were great!! Then came dessert, which, if you know European desserts, did not slide down too easily. After dinner, they taught us how to sing "Trust and Obey" in Romanian, so we could sing it with them in church on Sunday. It was a good time.

Well, if I go through every day, we could be here longer than we wish. So, I will just hit a couple more highlights. Sunday was a great day in three services again. We were exhausted, but enjoyed meeting new people and seeing other Gypsy works. The highlight, or rather lowlight, for Sunday was that I forgot the camera! Can you believe it!? We commented that this was about as bad as forgetting your underwear. In fact, it was worse! But anyway, the Lord is sovereign, and I probably enjoyed the day a little more as I wasn't always worrying about catching every moment on the cameras.

Monday evening we got to spend with our teammates, the Finks. This was a great time. They are great people, and we really connected with them as we shared our hearts with each other.

It is good to be home, but we praise the Lord for allowing us to take this trip. It really gave us something to look forward to and a reason to get on the ball with the deputation process. As we have said so many times, we praise the Lord for the privilege it is to serve Him. His grace is amazing to us, every day.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Posting from Romania!

Hello from Romania!! We've been recovering from jetlag and spending the rest of the time visiting the different ministries we will have the opportunity to be involved with here in the coming years. We're on an 11 day survey trip spending most of our time in the city of Oradea and the surrounding villages. We're being hosted by one of our future Baptist Mid-Missions teammates, Kim Marks. She has a ministry almost exclusively to the Gypsy people of Romania and our other teammates, the Oanas (Romanian nationals) minister primarily to the Romanians in this area. We've been able to spend time with both Kim and the Oana family to see what's happening in both ethnic groups. We've visited both Gypsy and Romanian churches and been in several homes of both groups as well. Today was especially great as we spent a few hours with a Gypsy pastor and his wife and their 2 young children. They are so very poor and all 4 of them live in 1 room. Pastor Nastase and his wife Claudia have such a great love and gratefulness toward the Lord. Our missionary hostess, Kim, translated much of what they said, which was awesome for us since we were able to connect with them much better that way (a lot more personally). We were there for a Bible study with the women of the village church. Only 3 of them came, so Kim allowed us to give our testimonies rather than teaching what she had planned. This was also a special blessing for us to allow them to see that our sinful hearts are the same as theirs and that God has given us salvation. Just because we are Americans, we are no different than they are in the sinfulness and selfishness of our hearts. One last thing that happened today that impacted us so greatly was to hear the Gypsies pray. It was incredible to hear how much they love the Lord and how well they understand who God is. Though they are unable to read, the Holy Spirit has taken the preaching and teaching of His Word in their churches and grown them up in Christ. It was AWESOME!! Sorry this post is so much to say. Please pray for the Lord's work in our hearts that we would seek His will and not our own in the coming months as we travel on deputation.

Sunday, January 7, 2007

tbs grav 2.0

You can now order the new Gravley Blog for only $99.99! Just kidding...actually, we just changed the setting on the comment section to receive comments from anyone, so it won't be so annoying to leave a comment if you don't have a Google account. My sweet sister in law Suzanne came up with this brilliant idea. Thanks, Suz! =) We have one question, though. For all of you experienced bloggers, will this get us a bunch of junk commenting that we don't want?

Friday, January 5, 2007

So much to tell, but . . .

Becky and I have really enjoyed our first week of having a blog. Now, not only do we get to check our often uneventful email, but we also get to watch our comments section like a hawk, only to find 2 in a week. We are realizing that you have to post if you want traffic. The same picture of Sam for 8 days just won't cut it (though you have to admit it is a cute one!) Anyway, we really do have so much to tell, but we just don't know how to say it. I have asked Becky just about every night if she is going to post anything new, and she just says, "I don't feel like it." You see, this takes work for us. With so many of you going on before us into blogdom, we feel we have so much to live up to.

Joking aside, it really is a fun waste . . . I mean . . . use of my time. We actually have big plans for this little corner of the web. We are leaving in 6 days for our survey trip to Romania. We hope to keep you all posted about our trip on this blog. We will be snapping lots of pictures and maybe even some video that we would love to share with you. So, please, stay tuned! Surely, in time, we'll get over this intitial intimidation.