JAM March 2015

FREE

I love March! I remember when I was living in Ukraine, and I thought March was an ugly month. The snow was old and dirty. The roads were muddy and slippery. The weather was cold and dull while the demeanour of the populace was abrupt and gloomy. Yet March whispered a promise, “winter is almost done, and spring will soon follow.”

I also love March because it’s my birthday!

And I also love March because this month we celebrate that the Miller Family is free. I love freedom. What pictures do you see when you hear the word "free"? Freedom that can be truly celebrated actually has parameters. The boundary is God. Life with God is an adventure! When as a family we live freely following the adventures God offers then we enjoy life together. Have you ever thought about that? Those three words convey so much.

· Enjoy

· Life

· Together

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February JAM 2015

HOPE

If you come and visit us in Beecroft, along with the cafe quality latte and amazing assortment of gluten free snacks which you'll be offered, there is a good chance that I will force our wedding album upon you. It's more than a wedding album. My wife has done an amazing job getting photos of us all around the world (a few photos of friends, but really the book features us). Towards the end of the book we have written out our Miller Family Values. I want to focus on one of these for each of the next few JAMs

The Miller Family is hopeful. What springs to mind when you hear the word "hope"? Is it more than just wishful thinking or longing expectancy? The source of our hope is God and his providence. And knowing that he is trustworthy our hope for the future is secure. Hope gives strength. But it can wane if we take our eyes off of God’s provision and direction. It is easy to trust ourselves for a short time and then we find ourselves in trouble and hope vanishes. Keep hope at the forefront of your family by daily looking to God for provision and guidance..

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January JAM 2015

SLEEP IS OVER-RATED

I’m not convinced that I totally agree with that heading. As we navigate the maze that begins the journey of parenthood, one thing I love is that there is something that greatly makes up for lack of sleep. Family! What a great invention from God. The sense of having and being a part of a new family is a wonder, a joy, a privilege, and a massive responsibility. Please pray with us as we learn how to parent our little boy Jonathan Peace. The lack of sleep will one day be a distant memory. May our family grow to honour and glorify the Lord Jesus Christ.

MARIE’S CORNER – SLEEP IS UNDERRATED

Life gets busy and for many people here in Sydney that means that sleep takes a backseat to a myriad of activities. I suppose there is some excuse for sleep deprivation when caring for a newborn, but I want to make sure that as Jonny learns to sleep more at night I don’t lose sight of the fact that God rested and He created us with a need to rest too.

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November JAM 2014

WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?

One of my favourite children’s authors is Dr Seuss and one of my favourite books is “Oh The Places You’ll Go!” Here is an excerpt:

The Waiting Place...
...for people just waiting.
Waiting for a train to go
or a bus to come, or a plane to go
or the mail to come, or the rain to go
or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow
or waiting around for a Yes or a No
or waiting for their hair to grow.
Everyone is just waiting.
Waiting for the fish to bite
or waiting for wind to fly a kite
or waiting around for Friday night
or waiting, perhaps, for their Uncle Jake
or a pot to boil, or a Better Break
or a string of pearls, or a pair of pants
or a wig with curls, or Another Chance.
Everyone is just waiting.

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October JAM 2014

COMMUNICATING LOVE

"The greatest of these is love." But how do you communicate love? How do you receive love? Lately I have been a part of many varied conversations revolving around the 5 love languages. We each impart and accept love in different ways with varying levels of intensity. It is helpful to understand this. I have been challenged to try to go beyond merely understanding this and to consciously consider how I can show love to my friends. Do I go beyond what comes easily and naturally for me and engage my friends in a love which they comprehend?

This month's challenge: pick someone in your inner circle of friends, examine how they best receive love and then go out of your way to display love to them accordingly.

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September JAM 2014

CONSISTENT ADVICE

Recently I have had cause to reflect upon many shared experiences but also wise words from a friend and mentor of mine. Thankfully my “Aussie Dad”, John Gollan, is still with us and slowly recovering from a major stroke a number of weeks ago. When I first came to Australia (in 1993) I spent many hours at the Gollans place before finally moving in and living there. I was young and headstrong and yet desired to know what God’s will for my life would be. Then, and many a time over the years since, I have hashed out conversations pertaining to the direction of my life. Each time the bottom line, the final word, would be the same: “Jono, you have to do what God wants you to do.” And that, my friends, is that!

MARIE’S CORNER

Nothing different from last month.

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August JAM 2014

“HOW TO STAY DELIRIOUSLY HAPPILY MARRIED FOR TWELVE MONTHS”

Recently Marie and I have joked that we should write a book with the above title. Whilst in the States we celebrated our one year anniversary. I have to say that we are both loving this thing called marriage. So we are now old pros and know all there is to know about love – kidding. But I would like to share a few of the blessings I have gleaned.

• Love refines you. As you allow yourself to love and be loved, it necessitates the rising of dross to the surface. Then as you choose love for the other (instead of self) the purging process begins.

• Love halves sorrows but doubles joys. When you have a bad day or a gripe, there is someone there to say “everything’s gonna be alright”. When you have reason to celebrate or just see a beautiful sunset – there is someone to share it with.

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