Family + Church + Snow + Food = a fabulous February

DSC_0006-002“God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end.” – Ecclesiastes 3:11

February has been an interesting month here in Wake Forest; 28 days definitely worthy of a pictorial review. It’s been especially memorable because we are meeting each and every day head on, as followers of the Living Way of Jesus. This life is too important, too stocked full with possibility, for anything less.

So let’s break it down: Family. Church. Weather. Food.

IMG_7243Grandchildren: With Naomi, Craig and the children just two hours north in Richmond, Rebekah and I are perfectly positioned to swoop in, enjoy, then zoom back home again. I have – no kidding – probably a thousand great photographs; but this one, taken by Naomi, tells the story as well as any.

David is three and Beks is 20-months. Naomi and Craig are fostering a creative atmosphere where both children are thriving. There’s very little around our grandchildren that beeps, buzzes, whirls, or flashes. Mostly it’s about wooden blocks, trains, cars, puzzles, books, Legos, and the opportunity to color.

Photographs like this make my heart sing. Enrichment; teachable moments; creativity; imaginative play; joy. They’ve got it all going on.

WFPC: Wake Forest Presbyterian Church is, of course, the reason Rebekah and I packed up seventeen years of Brandon and moved to the Piedmont of North Carolina. February marked 18-months in on this adventure, and sometimes we still pinch ourselves and wonder if we’ll wake up one day to discover it’s all some beautiful dream.

"All who believe are welcome at this table"
“All who believe are welcome at this table”

Portrait of A Community at Worship – February 2 – is to date my most ever visited post. We begin each month by sharing bread and wine around the Lord’s Table; it’s an action that speaks eloquently to the beauty of the Jesus-quality of love that unites us.

We are not a community that walks in lock-step, and we certainly don’t all agree when it comes to the social issues, opinions, ideas, politics, theological nuances and more that seem to divide so much of the church in the USA. But we are a family of faith that walks in unity when it comes to our love for Jesus, and our commitment to live faith out loud as we seek to be the presence of Christ, both to one another and this community. We are committed to unity, not uniformity, and there is a world of difference between the two.

We are committed to unity, not uniformity, and there is a world of difference between the two.

DSC_0022-001SNOW-MAGEDDON: February also featured the winteriest of wintery winter days. Snow; ice; single-digit temperatures. If ever there was an indication that we’re not in Florida anymore than this has been it.

But oh how beautiful! The splash of color a cardinal makes against the snowy backdrop. Trees glistening, all dressed in white. Street scenes like Christmas postcards.

Entire roads in our Tyler Run neighborhood blocked off while grownups watched the children ride sleds down the long hills. “Yay! No school!” A carnival atmosphere the first day… then parents increasingly frustrated as schools closed for the fifth, sixth, and seventh days.

nice presentation!
nice presentation!

FOOD & MORE: This has also been the month the “gourmet initiative” took off. If you missed the original explanation, this is my all-year-long Christmas gift for Rebekah. Each week during 2015, Rebekah gets to pick any recipe from the new cookbooks, and I will make it, exactly, according to the instructions; no deviations.

She has picked out some challenging recipes, and I have been having a fun time turning her selections into wonderful meals. Stay tuned for more of these. I’ll try to share a new one at least every couple of weeks. So far, so yummy.

SO WHAT! The “so what” here is our commitment, as a couple, to “live like we mean it.” No half-measures; no wasted time.

IMG_8162February has been a great month, because we are meeting each and every day head on, as followers of the Living Way of Jesus. This life is too important, too stocked full with possibility, for anything less.


(the photo gallery features two more pictures for each category: family, church, weather, and food)






Live Like You Mean It

derekmaul View All →

Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at, and there's always something new in the works.

Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor's degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.

Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men's Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.

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