Fear vs. Trust

Fear vs. Trust

By Catherine Alles

I have a common and irrational fear of the dark. As a kid – and even sometimes now – when I had to turn off a light downstairs, I’d run as fast as I could to the top, looking back to make sure no monsters were following me. These days, when I wake up as early as 5 a.m. to go to work, it can still feel eerie when the streets are empty and everything is silent and dark.

I Remember

I Remember

By Maureen Kasdorf

As I sat in the steamy bathroom with my little one, holding him close to ease his fear while the coughing wracked his little body, I remembered. “Lord, heal this little boy. Give him relief. Calm his body and spirit.” I remembered that each of my children has had a few bouts with croup and always in the middle of the night. I remembered the words of Psalm 63.

Expectations for Christmas Morning

Expectations for Christmas Morning

By Bryan Marvel

A few years ago, while sitting on the living room floor full of wrapping paper and ripped open boxes, my wife and I were discussing how the morning had gone. Did the kids like their presents? Are there traditions we want to start next year that we weren't able to do this year? Did we do a good job recovering the true meaning of Christmas amidst our culture’s consumeristic frenzy?

God With Us

God With Us

By Cora Alles 

My hands are glued to the steering wheel and my eyes to the road. I forget how cramped my right leg is, I tune out the Christmas music on the radio, and my senses are heightened. I am totally focused on the highway ahead of me. As a snowy, rainy, icy mixture pours down and darkness surrounds my little Honda Accord like a thick cloak, I feel fear creep into my mind. What if my windshield wipers stop working and I can’t see anything? What if another driver loses control and crashes into me? What if I slide off the road into a ditch?

God is Always With Us

God is Always With Us

By Carol Becwar

Every November, I think about the pain we experienced when our young son died. Entering that Advent season, I prayed for peace, yet my aching heart felt cheated. Beyond the pain, I saw only a dark mist shrouding any possibility of future happiness. How could God allow my sweet little one to suffer and die at such a tender age? How could it be His will to leave us alone, steeped in grief?

The Nearness of God

The Nearness of God

By Steve Akin

To be with us is to be for us.

Think about a time where you made the conscious choice to be with someone. You could be with others, but you choose this person. You could be doing other things, but no. You want to be at their side, walking with them, listening to them, and looking for a chance to catch a glimpse of their beautiful eyes. Maybe they will let you hold their hand. Oh, that would be the best. Truly the best.

Love in Action

Love in Action

By Trisha Goddard

We were excited when Meadowbrook Church expressed the desire to send a team to Paraguay to participate and serve in the First Nations Conference! The MBC team of four arrived on October 3, tired from their trip from Chicago to Asuncion, and yet, at the same time, with smiles on their faces. The next morning after breakfast at the guest house, they walked to our house, just four blocks away. I can only guess what a culture shock it was hearing Spanish, English, Portuguese, and Korean being spoken by the five men who were staying with us.

Doing Small Things with Great Love

Doing Small Things with Great Love

by Kelsey Sorvick

As a mom to a small child, I often feel that I'm dwelling in the land of little, monotonous tasks. Diapers and feedings, constant redirection of unwanted behavior, and the cleaning up of tiny messes blur together until I could go through the motions in my sleep. But I do the small things gladly. Despite how insignificant they may seem, I try to remember that those little labors add up. Being intentional in the small moments flows from the great love that I have for my daughter.

Comfort in the Unchanging

Comfort in the Unchanging

By Brooke Fossell

This year has been a time of transition for the Fossell household. Mike and I are empty nesters, as all four of our sons are living elsewhere. I finished school and began a chaplain internship. Our last remaining pet died. Since I couldn’t bear the empty house without SOME life, I got another parakeet. We’re looking at more change in the coming year. Two of our sons are engaged to wonderful young women, with weddings planned for this December and next June. I’ll be looking for a more permanent work situation when my internship ends in February.

Committed to Unity

Committed to Unity

By Jen Akin

The week after Steve and I got married, I returned to work, and he had a few days off before summer school began. I left the apartment that first morning, knowing that he was going to be unpacking the boxes from his move and putting away gifts we had received. That evening, I found every box emptied and every gift unwrapped and placed in piles around our new home. His method of organization was VERY different than mine. I had hoped to relax in a well-organized, neat house after teaching all day. Confusion and tears ensued, with a swift lesson in marital communication and interpretation of expectations! 

Finding Your Tribe

Finding Your Tribe

by Kelsey Sorvick

Recently, I've seen the word “tribe” flying around, particularly on the internet. It refers to a group of people who share a common interest, usually in the form of a close knit group of friends or an online community. The hashtag #findyourtribe has over 300,000 hits on Instagram, and #findyourtribeandlovethemhard has nearly as much traction. People are seeking a community that gives them a feeling of unity and collective purpose. Belonging to a tribe means that we are not alone. We are surrounded by people with whom we can face the world as a unified front.

Each Part United in Christ

Each Part United in Christ

By Christina Crumbliss

As a physician, I have a front row seat to the miracle of the human body. One aspect often most striking to me is how interconnected the body is. As children we all learned the silly song, “The knee bone’s connect to the thigh bone. The thigh bone’s connected to the hip bone. The hip bone’s connected to the…” Now, as a primary care physician, I sit with patients on a daily basis as we try to figure out why they are not feeling well and how we can help them feel better.

Finding Connections

Finding Connections

By Andrea Buchanan

In the early days of Meadowbrook Church I was part of a team called Connectors. We helped people new to church find connections. If we met someone who played an instrument we’d help them get acquainted with the worship leader. If we met a home school family we introduced them to others doing the same. If a medical student or teacher crossed our paths we pointed them toward others in the same field of interest.