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Planting Seeds for Compassionate Hearts

Our first family mission in 2013!
Family mission last summer, Ethan is now taller than me!

Planting Seeds for Compassionate Hearts
By Jill Marr, Director of Communications | February 28, 2019

I remember my first day as a parent almost 17 years ago, sitting in the hospital room with my husband looking at our amazing baby boy and thinking, “We have no idea what we are doing!” The nurse said as much when she handed over Ethan the first time to us and exclaimed, “Babies are silent chokers!” How do you respond to that? “Thank you, that’s very reassuring.” It’s as if the new-parent classes we took and the “What to Expect” book did not quite prepare us to face reality, and she was just confirming our greatest fears. BTW-all choking, regardless of age, is silent. I kinda wanted to bring that nurse call button home with us, you know, just in case. Well, three years later we added a beautiful daughter to our family, and today both kids made it into their teenage years relatively unscathed.

It is a daunting task – parenthood. How do you raise a human that will be compassionate and caring, who will think of others and try to make the world a more loving and positive place? That first day with my son and every day since I learned that it takes a lot of prayer and a lot of people to come alongside you and to support you.

My son will be a senior next year, and I find myself reflecting more as my days with him at home dwindle. St. Philip’s has been and continues to be a vital part of my family’s daily life. This church helped us build a solid foundation for our family to impact the world for Christ.

For the past six summers, our family has participated in St. Philip’s Family Mission Trip to Nocona, Texas. Building on each previous year in Nocona, there are familiar moments to look forward to and new memories to create. Allowing our kids to grow their faith, to serve others and to live beyond themselves, all while having fun, is a true blessing. We are bonded with the Nocona community that we serve, as well as the families from church who we serve beside.

It made my heart smile to look back at a letter my son wrote last summer as he explained to his friends and family about his upcoming youth mission trip:

The past five years have been some of the most interesting, and I’d say significant years of my life. I owe a huge debt of that to the church. I know five years doesn’t sound like much. After all, I’m only 16, but the impact of those five years have shaped me into the person I am today and fuels my further progression into who I want to become in the future.

So what happened within those years that was so special? Service. Loving your neighbor as yourself. It started when I went with my family on a mission trip to Nocona, TX.

It’s hard raising kids to become compassionate humans, it takes a lot of prayer and a lot of people to come alongside you and to support you. Our family is preparing for our seventh Family Mission to Nocona on June 12-16. Will you and your family join us?

Come to the Family Mission Info Meeting this Sunday, March 3 at 12:20 pm in the Conference Room, St. Philip’s Hall to find out more. Can’t make the meeting? Contact Mary Hendrix and she’ll give you all of the details.