kati kati bird gardens
We're still waiting on test results for news about Joseph, and in the meantime we've said adieu to Richard's family (who had been mid-visit when Joseph became ill and were here to care for the girls while we were in the hospital - yet another instance of God's providence and blessing upon our time here).
We did have a lovely visit, in spite of all, and were able to share some glimpses of New Zealand's beauty with the Sealys. Rich's sister Christine and brother Jason brilliantly captured this beauty in (hundreds!) of photographs. I share just a small selection. [Click on any photo to enlarge it.]
Jason and Christine attended several youth events during their stay. Christine, an authentically and deeply beautiful soul, even did a bit of direct ministry! Maria and Bernadette loved their time with Dwama (Grandma), Dwampa (Grandpa), Aunt Tursteen (Aunt Christine) and Uncle "JayJay" (but pronounced more like "DayDay"). The house feels very empty now that they're gone and we miss them already.
Some highlights of the visit include: a hike of Mt. Maunganui, pictured below (each carrying a child from base to summit); Joseph's Christening; Maria's 4th birthday (celebrated just 2 days early); touring the Hobbit holes of Matamata, and Grandpa's cockpit seat for the flight from Tauranga to Auckland.
not quite halfway up
aunt christine with her new godson
blissed out and exhausted
We are very moved and truly grateful for the many many emails and prayers for Joseph. We feel comforted knowing how many good people are supporting us through this ordeal. Now that we are home from the hospital and Joseph is more content, things feel a bit "normal" as we wait to hear news. But he has four separate medical appointments starting this week, some more stressful than others (for him and for us). Please continue to pray for health, strength and, above all, our ability to trust the Lord who loves our little boy so perfectly.