What’s Up At the Maxwells

Sorry for the silence. We are all doing well as we stay busy with different things the Lord has given us. I, Sarah, am in the middle of a Moody project. No, it’s not Spring Days just yet. It’s nothing too exciting for most of you, but I’ll tell you all about it in May.

The Lord continually sends me encouragement for keeping on with the Moodys. It sometimes brings tears to my eyes as I read how the Lord Jesus is using the Moodys in families’ lives: ways I never would have dreamed of. If I ever doubt why the right guy hasn’t come yet, the Lord gently reminds me of how He has used me for the Moodys at the moment. So, whether Mr. Right is just around the corner, or not for another year or two, I’ll continue on!

There were a few that seemed to think I was depressed or sad from my above paragraph. Ummmm. In that case, a huge clarification is in order. I’m not in the slightest. I’m extremely happy and enjoying the life the Lord Jesus has given me. I know that marriage is not the beginning (nor the end!) in life, and my joy and delight are in serving the Lord! In addition, not everyone gets married or gets married young. Hope that helps clarify. Sarah

Cute Bethany.

Dinner one night. Yum.

I was working in the bus on my Moody project, and I saw John and Anna bringing the little girls home. I thought little Bethany was precious next to John.

A picnic with Grandma.

Last night, we had a termite swarm: INSIDE the house. They had swarmed into the sewing room, kitchen, and dining room, and were trying to make their escape out of the house. We began our plan of action with vacuuming them up while bug spray was procured. The above picture was only after they had been sprayed in the garage. I didn’t get my camera out when they were swarming.

I’ll leave you with these verses. All of us have opportunities to “count it all joy.” I think we often don’t view a trial or discouraging time or a patience tester as “joy” but James says to. So, may we all take advantage of those times and learn, along with James, to “count it all joy.”

“My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.” (James 1:2-4).


5 Years Ago

Susannah was born. Today would have been her 5th birthday.

Nathan and Melanie desired children since they were married. Year after year went by, and no pregnancy. Imagine their delight when, on Melanie’s birthday (early September) in 2006, they found out she was expecting. They were on a little trip, enjoying God’s creation in the mountains of Colorado. Melanie went through a difficult pregnancy, with bed rest part way through and other issues. But, as time went on, it was apparent Baby Max (a nickname, we didn’t know if it was a boy or a girl) was coming sooner rather than later. At the hospital, all throughout labor, Baby Max was carefully monitored, and everything appeared fine. Sweet Susannah was born in the evening, with a team from the NICU on hand to help. Yet, something was wrong. She wasn’t moving nor could she even open her eyes. Totally still.


At first, there was hope. Surely she would start to move, but as the hours ticked by, and doctor after doctor, came through, it was apparent she was only going to be with us for a short time. Finally, on Saturday, Susannah slipped peacefully from her Mommy’s arms straight to the arms of Jesus. It broke all of our hearts. Many, many tears were shed. During that time of grief, this section from Job was especially meaningful: “… the Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.” Amen.

It is so true. We are so blessed, and the reality is, Susannah just went home to be with Jesus a little ahead of the rest of us. It is a sure thing that each one of us will die. That is a non-optional part of life. “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.” (Hebrews 9:27) I plead with those of you who are reading this who do not know the Lord as your Savior. Please don’t put off giving your life to Him. “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” (Romans 10:9-10) And, then, this verse from 1 Peter 2:7: “Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner.”

Nathan and Melanie, amidst their intense grief — their empty arms, their empty nursery, and their quiet house, all signs of what they were missing — bore it well, and allowed the trial to be used in their lives in a precious way. Fourteen months later, Susannah’s sister, Abigail, was born.

We know many of you have lost babies, and some very recently. Our hearts grieve with you. Life is precious. Life is also short. May we not take even one day for granted.

Susannah was beautiful with dark, curly hair. When Bethany was a baby, several of us thought that they would have looked very similar. Psalms 139:14: “I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.”

Please click the link (picture) below to be taken to Susannah’s slideshow of her short time here on earth. We’d love to re-record the music at some point, but for now, we will leave you with what was originally done.

Thank you for your prayer support for Nathan and Melanie during her difficult pregnancy, the days we had with Susannah, and then for them as they grieved their loss. Thank you for continuing to pray for them with the newest one on the way. Things are going relatively well at the moment. Melanie had a day of contractions about 10 days ago, but they are very thankful that they subsided. She is now almost 28 weeks.


Susannah Joy's Slideshow and Lullaby
Susannah Joy's Slideshow and Lullaby

“For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.”

–Revelation 7:17

Joseph’s HTML Class

Wednesday Joseph finished his ten week HTML-Step One in Website Design ITonRamp track.

He had an AWESOME group of students, ranging from young people on up, and we all learned a lot. He took us from knowing almost nothing about HTML to being able to build a web site. It was exciting to see the enthusiasm Joseph had for his students and the joy he had in sharing with them each week through the webinar. He detailed things out so clearly for us.

Before his final webinar.

Here’s what one student shared recently:

“This course was an incredible blessing to me, and I am excited to see how God will work through it. Thank you again for the amount of time and effort you put into creating and sustaining this course.”

In addition, Nathan is in the middle of a Computer Essentials course, and he will be starting another one mid-April. Plus, he has an A+ Track in June.


“So that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding;”

Proverbs 2:2

The Report

To start the post out, we’ll show you pictures of Abby and Bethany in the bus Wednesday about lunch time. They were hiding things in their Daddy’s bunk.

See her joy?!

Thursday early afternoon, Nathan arrived at the bus after an uneventful flight, followed by a shuttle ride direct to Uriah. We were excited to have him join us! The purpose of his coming was to share about ITonRamp with those at the conference, as well as to be on a panel. We set up Thursday afternoon, and families began to register by middle to late afternoon. We girls were especially grateful for a sweet couple's help in setting up our book tables, as we were tight on time.

Friday morning was relaxed, since the vendor hall didn’t open until 10 a.m. So, there was plenty of time for getting ready for the day. We met a fair number of new families in addition to seeing quite a few familiar faces. I had wondered who we would “run into” that we knew, and I was surprised and delighted with the families we came across that we hadn’t seen for quite some time.

Anna talking to some young ladies before a session.
Praying before Dad's session.
A little guy in the back of Dad's Preparing Sons session.
A young man taking notes during Dad's session.
Christopher photographed Jonathan Lewis (of Homeschool Enrichment Magazine) and his wife, Linnea, wedding last year.
The panel Dad was on.

Friday evening, at 9, there was a dessert social. It was a great time to fellowship with others, and there was untold numbers to choose from to chat with :-).

Nathan talking to the father of an ITonRamp student.

Saturday morning, while Mom's Chores session was running for ladies, the guys were on a panel called Young Entrepreneurs. They were able to share their experiences in an informal setting.

The guys' panel.

Jesse and Joseph making sure things were ready for Mom's session Saturday afternoon.

Mom’s sessions went well on Saturday. It is her delight to encourage ladies in managing their most precious resource: time, which can easily be squandered. She also enjoyed sharing about the importance of chores and how they facilitate the entrepreneur-minded family. Whenever Mom was at the booth, there seemed to be someone who wanted to talk with her :-). The same applied to Dad!

Nathan with a friend.

Each one of us had so many conversations with many different people, and it was all a blessing. We delight in being able to travel as a family and share, and Chicago was another joy.


“For your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now” (Philippians 1:5).

We’re Home!

We pulled in about 5:30 a.m. this morning. Thank you for praying for our traveling safety! We are going to catch up on rest this afternoon.


You'll see John's mini-work station on the left. It's a great set-up for him.

“There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God” (Hebrews 4:9).


We left the Chicago area about 7:30 p.m., and we will likely be home about 5 a.m. tomorrow morning.

The conference went well. We will post a real update later. Thank you for praying for our traveling safety tonight. Dad is currently driving, and John will take over at some point.


Dad, Nathan, Joseph, and John were on a panel this morning.

“He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler” (Psalms 91:4).