Walk Through Bethlehem and Maxwell Family Concert

A church here in town presents a wonderful Walk Through Bethlehem each year. We’re grateful to have a part.

During this weekend of December 5th, 6th, and 7th, the Church of the Open Door transforms their church by stepping back in time. You will feel like you’re experiencing Bethlehem 2000 years ago. A guide takes you around Bethlehem, explaining the different areas, and you meet era town’s people. It’s a great experience, leaving you in awe of all that transpired when Jesus came to earth.

While people wait in the sanctuary to take their tour, Joseph & Elissa, John, Anna, Jesse, and Mary, with guest appearances from the little relatives, will be sharing through music and testimony Friday and Saturday, 7-9 pm. If you get called for your tour before you hear their whole set, you can stop back in the sanctuary.

Last year, we enjoyed meeting some of you. Walk Through Bethlehem is a wonderful family activity. The actual tour times are Friday, 6-10 pm, and Saturday and Sunday, 5-10 pm. If you want to hear my family, you’ll have to come Friday or Saturday, between 7 and 9. Please make sure to introduce yourselves; I’m usually in the back of the sanctuary with my camera.

If you live in the Kansas City area, the Church of the Open Door would be about a 45 minute drive.

The church’s address is:

Church of the Open Door
4800 South 20th St. Trafficway
Leavenworth, KS  66048

Also, on the topic of Christmas music, our family will be giving a very special Christmas concert on December 11th in Leavenworth. If you’d like more information, please e-mail us, and we’ll be happy to give you the details.

Need I say there is a lot of Christmas music happening around here?



“And the angel said unto them, Fear not:
for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy,
which shall be to all people. For unto you
is born this day in the city of David a Saviour,
which is Christ the Lord.”
Luke 2:10-11

With Thankful Hearts

As it has become a yearly tradition, the Maxwell Family would like to share several things we feel especially blessed with. To give a slightly different twist, though, we’re prefacing it with the top three items we’re ALL thankful for.

Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ
Our Family
God’s Word


Steve (Dad), and Teri (Mom)


  • I’m thankful for our challenges and needs so I can bring them to my Lord and see His hand at work in our lives.
  • I’m thankful for brothers and sisters in Christ that God had allowed us to work alongside and fellowship with.
  • I’m thankful for our church.
  • I’m thankful our nation still protects freedom to worship Jesus Christ.
  • The number eleven (ask Joshua why).


  • God’s faithfulness for 40 years of marriage.
  • God’s grace through 30 years of homeschooling and bringing us to the end.
  • God’s mercy and strength that draws our adult children to walk faithfully with Him.
  • God’s allowing our family to share with others and encourage them in the reality of a walk with Jesus in family life.
  • God’s provision for our family during the 10+ years of Titus2 being our only support.
  • Hiking.



Nathan, and his wife, Melanie,
and precious family of 3 girls and 1 boy


  • My work—both consulting and teaching
  • My chickens and all that we’ve learned from them
  • Workout buddies (Jesse and John)


  • Andrew’s safe arrival
  • For a good recovery post-Andrew
  • Getting to go visit my sister out of state



Abby (6)

  • That I’m a Christian!
  • Chickens



Bethany (4)

  • That I’m a Christian!
  • Toys



Christina (2)

  • Germ-X (smile: folks, this is unedited, and she was in the van when they were working on their list, so she probably saw the Germ-X bottle ;))
  • My “people people” (translation: Fisher Price Loving Family)



Christopher, and his wife Anna Marie,
and his sweet family of 1 boy and 1 girl and ?


  • Talking with Joshua about his day before he goes to bed each night.
  • Ruthanne’s adorable smiles: her eyes sparkle and her whole face lights up.
  • The health that God has blessed us with.
  • Work.

Anna Marie:

  • The contagious delight and enthusiasm our children have for learning new things.
  • The frequent kicks and activity I’m feeling from the new baby developing inside (so looking forward to meeting him/her sometime in March, Lord willing!).
  • The freedom we have to worship God in our country.



Joshua (2)

  • Special treats
  • Helicopters and airplanes
  • Grandpa’s chainsaw
  • Bass and harmonica




  • I’m grateful for God’s gentle patience and grace in my life.
  • I’m grateful for you all: you truly bless me!
  • I’m grateful for the inspiration and ability to write stories which glorify Jesus Christ.
  • I’m grateful for opportunities to be Jesus’ light in a dark world.
  • Mint chocolate (especially mint M&Ms!).



Joseph, and his wife, Elissa


  • Courtship, engagement and marriage to precious and amazing Elissa: the love of my life.
  • People who stand up against the murder of innocent little babies.
  • Those who stand in harm’s way to protect us
  • Love
  • PhpStorm
  • Cabbage
  • Colorado


  • The amazing months of marriage that my beloved husband and I have enjoyed.
  • Good health
  • Sunshine
  • Our happy home, where I can be a homemaker
  • My husband’s job
  • Cooking fresh food on my gas stove
  • Purple flowers



  • Prayer
  • A warm house
  • Caffeine
  • New experiences and opportunities
  • Liberty and peace in our country
  • Little kiddos
  • Friends
  • Ham and crispy bacon
  • My workout buddies
  • Green plants




  • I’m thankful for our family prayer times. I love the times that we have together praying.
  • I am super thankful for a home that is filled with love and peace where Jesus is the focus.
  • Playing music with my siblings I’m grateful for because of all the experiences that come with it.
  • Bethany, my niece, (well, I am super thankful for all of them, but this part is extra sweet!) who wanted to learn to read because she wanted to read the Bible and her mom who is such a good teacher!
  • For a little icing on the cake—cookie dough ;).
  • Polkadots!




  • Our church and pastor
  • My loving family
  • Really good chefs in our house
  • Three computer monitors
  • Governor Brownback
  • 88 black and white keys
  • Coffee
  • Snow (when applicable)



  • Very grateful for God’s beautiful creation! All the mountains, deserts, and ocean, and the privilege to see them.
  • A huge thanks to Mom who poured her life into me for all the years she homeschooled me!
  • Our pastor, Dad. He does such an amazing job each week delivering a powerful message.
  • I’m thankful for music, and the ability to play with the family.
  • And for all life’s simple pleasures like baking — especially with a sister.
  • Chocolate!


“I will bless the LORD, who hath given me counsel:
my reins also instruct me in the night seasons.
I have set the LORD always before me:
because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.
Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth:
my flesh also shall rest in hope.”
Psalms 16:7-9

Thanksgiving Aunties’ Time

Aunt Anna and Aunt Mary wanted to have a special thanksgiving tea with the girls Monday.

After A, B, and C came over, the first item of business was to fix hair in braids, and Aunt Mary donned a little cap–maybe similar to the colonial ladies?



Each girl chose a tea flavor. A straw works really well to consume it with.DSC_5072

Praying for God to bless.


Aunt Mary had made brownies, and there were also some other little treats.DSC_5099

Writing a list of things to be thankful for!DSC_5114DSC_5141

What a beautiful joy it is to give God thanks! Oh, and you’ll see a post from the entire family tomorrow ;)–working on that now.


“Enter into his gates with thanksgiving,
and into his courts with praise:
be thankful unto him, and bless his name.”
Psalms 100:4 

Broody Mama

Meet Broody Mama (named by Abigail of course :)). Broody Mama wanted to hatch some chicks and very patiently sat on her eggs. She didn’t leave them more than 30 minutes a day, and as time drew closer to hatching, she was up only a few minutes at a time. Finally, three little chicks popped out.

The Psalmist draws an analogy about the protection a chicken provides her chicks to how the Lord watches over us! How true.

“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


Abby holding one of her chickens (not Broody Mama).


Notice the head peeking out?DSC_3960DSC_3969DSC_3979DSC_3984

At the cost of getting your hand pecked, you can reach one.DSC_3991DSC_4009DSC_4020

“… how often would I have gathered
thy children together, even as a hen
gathereth her chickens under her wings,
and ye would not.”

Matthew 23:37

Christian Children’s Books

Almost two weeks ago, Dad and I picked up the new Moody books, along with some other books we reprinted. It is wonderful to finally have Exciting Times and Christmas Comes to Sunflower in hand.

For those who may not know, the Moody Family books are geared toward a 7-13 year old reading comprehension level, but if the books are used as a read aloud, children as young as 3 or 4 understand.

I received a sweet e-mail from a mom yesterday, and then a note on a MOTH registration today.

“I was just going to send you an e-mail to let you know how much my daughter has enjoyed the Moody books. I bought the first one two years ago. My 7 year old daughter loved it, so I bought the rest of the series. She has read the first 8 three times!! She talks about the Moodys like they are friends of hers. “Max did this,” or “Mollie said that.” She has started cooking, cleaning, and wanting to serve people. She gives your books all the credit! I got on your website to get an e-mail address when I saw your new book. I was so excited. Please keep writing! It’s so hard to find wholesome Christian books for my children to read. We will keep buying them if you keep writing! 🙂
We have made the chocolate chip cookies and the fiesta casserole. Great recipes! Thanks for sharing them.” –Leigh

“We LOVE the Moody books! My 3 year old likes to pretend she is Maddie. The Moodys are a beautiful, fictional family that we strive to be like! They even started us having family devotions.” –April

IMG_4551This is the press they printed the Exciting Times covers on.


Anna has done a great job packing orders and sending them out to homes around the world.

“Trust in the LORD with all thine heart;
and lean not unto thine own understanding.”
Proverbs 3:5