All posts by Joseph

Calia Grace Maxwell

We have exciting news!

Calia Grace Maxwell was born to Elissa and I last night, October 4th. With a headful of dark hair, she’s a little doll.

Elissa is doing very well and enjoying her bundle of joy. The labor went fast, especially for it being Elissa’s first. I was blessed to support Elissa throughout labor, and I’m thrilled to have Calia here.

Calia means “Beautiful” in Greek. As we prayed about what to name a little girl, the LORD kept directing us back to this. We love it because God’s grace is beautiful. He has transformed our lives through His grace, and we pray and believe that He will transform this sweet little girl into a beautiful, shining light for His glory.

Here are some pictures to tide you over until the real newborn session later.

For those who like details, Calia weighed 5 lbs, 13 oz.

Rejoicing in His gift of life,
Joseph, Elissa, and Calia

Calia Grace Maxwell
Calia Grace Maxwell

DSC_9539

The happy family: Joseph, Elissa, and Calia
The happy family: Joseph, Elissa, and Calia
Elissa and Calia
Elissa and Calia
Joseph and Calia
Joseph and Calia

“And how shall they preach, except they be sent?
as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them
that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad
tidings of good things!”
Romans 10:15

Joseph and Elissa Maxwell, An Update

Hello friends,

Seven months and six days ago, Elissa and I were happily married. Since then, we have greatly enjoyed setting up our new home. Between my work and Elissa’s upkeep around the home, the time has flown by. Our favorite time of the day is when we relax on our living room couch and open God’s Word. It is exciting to see how our love has grown over these past months as we draw closer to each other and to the Lord.

You probably wanted to know all of that information. Well, the reason for this blog post is to answer the question that you wanted to ask: we are expecting a child in October and are very excited about it. We believe that children are a blessing from the Lord, and we couldn’t be more overjoyed to welcome this little one into our family, and as many more as the Lord chooses to give us.

We covet your prayers as we travel this new (for us) and amazing journey. Elissa is now over the worst of her morning sickness, which is a blessing.

In Christ Jesus,
Joseph and Elissa

DSC_1930

“But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood,
an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew
forth the praises of him who hath called you out
of darkness into his marvellous light.”
1 Peter 2:9

Joseph and Elissa’s Story: Part 2

If you missed Part 1, you can read it here.

Soon there after, we began a serious-friendship-with-the-purpose-of-marriage stage.

p 4-2The frequent visits I made out there, along with e-mails and phone calls, showed how similar Elissa and I were in our beliefs, convictions, and mannerisms.

5Yes, during that time, we began to fall in love.

7t 2-2We stood in awe of how the Lord answered every prayer for unity, knitted hearts, and direction in our relationship! We began officially courting in April.  On May 22nd, I made a surprise visit and asked Elissa to marry me, and she said “yes!”

We had a delightful summer planning our wedding, enjoying visits, and counting down the days to our wedding.  September 6th, we became united in marriage.

We are so grateful for the Lord’s provision and blessing in our lives! We praise Him for the deep friendship, unity, commitment, love, and the bonds of marriage that we now share. Both of us are also grateful to our parents for how they raised us in the ways of the Lord and how they supported us through our relationship.

r5-2Elissa and I look back and see how the Lord used our single years to strengthen our relationships with Jesus and also to prepare us for marriage if that was His will for us. I really enjoyed traveling with my family, helping in the Titus2 ministry, and working on my home. Elissa loved helping her family as a daughter and a sister at home, teaching music lessons, and learning new skills each year to prepare her for whatever the Lord had for her later in life.

Now, I’m excited to introduce you to my wife, Elissa Maxwell.

1702And for those who wondered why we didn’t share before, I felt it best for her family’s privacy not to make it public until our wedding day.

Elissa and I are anxious to discover what the Lord has for us as a team for His glory!

Serving Jesus,
Joseph & Elissa

“Who can find a virtuous woman?
for her price is far above rubies.”
Proverbs 31:10

Joseph and Elissa’s Story: Part 1

It’s amazing how much has transpired in my life over this past year. I marvel at the Lord’s goodness and direction. Saturday, September 6th, I married the love of my life, Elissa. The story begins almost two years ago. In October 2012, I met Elissa through mutual friends we stayed with during a Titus2 fall tour. While there, Elissa spent some time with my sisters but I only interacted with her briefly.

JandE-1
Elissa, Sarah, and Tiffany

I didn’t think too much about her, but then, the next fall, our family had the opportunity to park our bus at Elissa’s family’s home on a few of our free days since our mutual friends had moved away.

JandE-12JandE-13

JandE-10

JandE-8As I observed Elissa during that visit and talked with her in a family setting, I began to greatly admire her and what the Lord was doing in her life. I became very interested in her, prayed, fasted, and sought the Lord’s will regarding Elissa as a wife. I prayed some more. After discussing it with my parents, I called her dad and expressed my interest. Our family then invited her family to join us for Thanksgiving.

Part 2 will be coming at some point!

Joseph

JandE-9

“They shall speak of the glory of thy
kingdom, and talk of thy power.”
Psalms 145:11

Responding to Naysayers: Part 1

We receive comments on occasion with questions that appear not to be sincere or that might have an agenda. That’s okay. However, we know that you may encounter similar questions from others with a different “world view.” We thought that perhaps if we responded to some of our “naysayer” questions here, it might be a help to you.

Below is a recent blog comment followed by Joseph’s response.

“Since Joseph owns his own home, why can’t he live in it? He doesn’t have a wife and kids to support, so his expenses would be low.”

I (Joseph) always enjoy a small chuckle with myself whenever my dad shares comments like this with our family. The reason is the use of the word “can’t.” “Can’t” indicates that the writer thinks this decision has been made by someone other than me. It hasn’t. Dad and Mom provided solid, Biblical guidance for my life when I was younger, and as I have grown up, they have taught us to think critically with the Bible as our foundation.

There are three main reasons why I chose to continue living at our home after I purchased my own house: financial, accountability, and family. Let me explain.

Financial

While, yes, it is true that living by myself in my house before I am married would be less expensive than it will be when I have my own family, there still would be significant additional expense, such as food and utilities, that I don’t incur while living at home with my parents. It takes little to realize that living with my family is even less expensive than living alone—almost zero. As a result, I can place what I save toward long-term goals, immediate improvements to my house, and giving. I am very grateful for Dad and Mom’s willing and accommodating spirits to let us live in their home without charge as income-earning young adults.

Accountability

When the Lord brings me to begin talking with a young lady’s father about courting his daughter, I will approach that father in total honesty. If I was living by myself, I would have no one to back up my word. In my opinion, if I was living alone and said, “You’ll just have to trust me,” that would lend less credibility than the accountability I have welcomed in our family. Living with my family, and having my parents as my accountability partners, I am very grateful for the ability that I have to provide references to my integrity throughout discussions with a father. I believe Jesus gave a precedent for this when He sent the disciples out two-by-two.

Family

Accountability segues into this one very nicely. I love my family. I love spending time with them. We have a great time together! My family members are my best friends, and life would be rather boring without my best friends around me. If/when the Lord brings along the young lady for me, my family’s “best friend” status will transfer to her and my children. Sadly, many in the world cannot comprehend a family model like this.

For a Scriptural basis for this thinking, I look no further than the first family that God created—Adam, Eve, and eventually their children. Genesis 2:18 says, “And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.” A very practical secondary application in this verse is that it is not good for me to live alone.

My desire is to live a life pleasing to Jesus and a life that is in obedience to His Holy Bible. I hope this makes it understandable and clear as to why I am choosing to live with my family until I am married.

In Christ,
Joseph

DSC_3505

“But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always
to give an answer to every man that asketh you a
reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.”

1 Peter 3:15

A Creative Idea

Yesterday, on our way to the nursing home (for our usual Christmas service for the residents), our conversation came to discussing the many people in the police/fire/medical services that were working on Christmas. As we talked, the Lord gave Anna an awesome idea – what if we could make some cookies for the police officers in our town?

We made arrangements with the police dispatcher, who said that they would ask an officer to bring the cookies back to the station. The kitchen was soon a major blur of activity while we baked the cookies and Mary crafted a card. After the cookies were finished, we wrapped them in plastic wrap, and arranged them in a basket.

A little while later, the doorbell rang, and we gave the officer the cookies. We are so grateful for our police officers and the other emergency people who put their lives on the line for our protection and safety.

Joseph

DSC_0013

 

DSC_0016

 

DSC_0020

 

DSC_0028

 

DSC_0032

 

DSC_0033

 

DSC_0040

 

DSC_0043

“And let the peace of God rule in your hearts,
to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.”

Colossians 3:15