After spending many Christmases in Canada with our family, we have chosen to stay at home in Texas this year. Christmas 2012 was spent in Calgary, AB with Elaine and her family,
Christmas 2011 was spent in Mission, British Columbia with Ian and his family
and Christmas 2010 was spent in St. Stephen, New Brunswick with Gwen and her
family. 2009 was in St. Stephen as was 2008, but 2008 was different for the
entire family gathered in St. Stephen that year and we were altogether. We’ve tentatively
decided to limit our visits to Canada to summer, and in fact, Judy has spent
about six weeks in Canada during each of the last two summers; as you can see,
our family spans the North American Continent or 3000 miles east to west.
Our big news this year is that we not only await the celebration of the birth of baby Jesus and his
second coming; but we also await the birth of our ninth grandchild to be born
to Ian and Buffi at the end of May, 2014. Judy plans to fly to Mission, BC to
help out, especially by watching Adana Davids, who is now two and excitedly
awaiting the new baby.
Last January through May, Peter and I spent every Thursday at Lanier Theological library writing on our two books. We both finished them as summer began. Peter had to revise his in
the fall and it is now off to the publisher moving towards a 2014 publication
date (A Biblical Theology of James Peter and Jude in the Zondervan BTNT series(. Judy’s book came back with a request to revise it because there were two books hidden inside the manuscript, both of which were deemed publishable. This project has barely been restarted; whereas Peter has begun writing a new book.
Last spring at Houston Baptist University, Peter and I co-taught a course called Spiritual Formation. This fall we co-taught a graduate course called Pastoral Care and Spiritual
Formation. That was fun and a very meaningful experience for both of us.
Peter has continued as a voluntary assistant at our church all year and taught at Houston Baptist
University as a ¾ time visiting Professor; he has also taught one course each
semester as a Visiting Professor at Houston Graduate School of Theology.
On Sunday evenings during much of the year, Judy trained a team of 15 in BridgePoint Bible Church, (her sister’s church) to do pastoral care. Her sister has led the resultant lay
counseling ministry since October and an assistant pastor oversees the support
groups led by the rest of this trained team.
Judy has spoken at three different retreats and has done the training for the new Daughters of the King at All Saints Episcopal Church. She also does spiritual direction for several
leaders in various churchs.
Peter and Judy both have been in good health during this past year for which we are thankful.
When Judy was in New Brunswick with Gwen’s family, we celebrated the 1st birthday of her fourth boy, Ian and Canada Day. Then she went to Calgary and celebrated Elaine’s
birthday and an early birthday for 11-year old Janelle. Finally in Mission, BC,
she visited the zoo, a big lake and a Farmer’s Market BBQ-tasting contest with
Ian and family.
Peter stayed at home to teach summer school, volunteer at our church and write on his book. During this time, the washing machine upstairs broke and the town home was flooded. So Peter had to deal with the drying out and the repair of the damage.
In September, Judy went with her sister to Nashville, TN for the international conference of the American Association of Christian Counselors: this was a stimulating time for both of us
and we had a lot of good sister time.
In October, Peter and I went to Berryville, Arkansas for the national gathering of the Brothers and Sisters of Charity, which is a Franciscan-rooted, Catholic-based, ecumenically open “public community of the faithful” led by John Michael Talbot and really enjoyed the conference.
It was a spiritually refreshing time for both. We are presently postulants in
the Brothers and Sisters of Charity, Domestic expression and hope to become novices shortly.
In November, Peter went to the Society of Biblical Literature Conference in Baltimore, MD and read a paper, chaired a section and preached and celebrated on the 50th anniversary of the death of C. S. Lewis at the meeting of the Anglican Association of Biblical Scholars. That also marked 50 years of preaching for him. Judy spent the week at Peter’s brother’s home and then the entire Davids clan (except for our children and grandchildren in Canada) gathered for a Thanksgiving and birthday celebrations for John and Peter. This was thoroughly enjoyed by all.
As we approach Christmas 2013, we are so grateful for God’s gift in the package of baby Jesus – what a surprise! God surprises us with His goodness over and over again. How has He
surprised you this year?
Have a blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year,
Peter and Judy Davids