Chapter 58: A solid perspective

For he is the living God,

and he will endure forever.

His kingdom will never be destroyed,

and his rule will never end.

He rescues and saves his people;

he performs miraculous signs and wonders

in the heavens and on earth.

He has rescued Daniel

from the power of the lions.”


Daniel 6:26-27 NLT

These last 6 years have been one crazy adventure after another, getting wilder by the minute.  It seems like only yesterday that we were welcoming Jack into the world, unsuspecting of twists and turns ahead of us.  We have had many highs, and many lows.  The mountains and valleys on our family’s journey have given us a very different perspective on life and what we hold value in.  I wouldn’t take any of these experiences back, the lessons have been invaluable.

Though we have yet to reach our final destination, which we still believe to be Vancouver BC, we are confident that God has us right where He wants us (Portland, OR).  Whether we are here for 6 or 60 months, we will continue to pursue His will.  So I’ll try to paint that picture of what we are currently working on and what we believe we will be doing in the days to come.

Brad will be working with a friend in Portland who roasts coffee.  This will turn into a more full time job, providing a solid foundation that we are not12 used to working off of!  More specifics will be provided after paperwork is signed.  Until then, I will continue to connect with the coffee community here in Portland.  These guys and gals are fun to be around and passionate for coffee.  It reminds me of the Polish coffee community I so dearly miss.  I look forward to connecting my passions of coffee and community in the months to come!  As always, I am excited to work around my trade and dive deeper into coffee.

Michelle will be more focused on the kids, as Baby Graves #4 is due sometime between November 24th to December 1st…which means any day now we will expanding to a family of 6!  Jack is continuing to excel with Homeschooling, Loralie is meshing well with her 2nd grade class (and has tested for TAG/Talented And Gifted) at her school! Dottie is a busy little bee with new words and sign language each day!  Life is full.

We have so much happening in the next two weeks: a new job, (soon) new apartment, new baby.  The reality of of all this can be crushing at times.  Regardless, Jack and Loralie are excited, and Dottie is oblivious.  Having a new apartment that is not furnished, reminds us of all the items we don’t have.  We have found some items (a single couch, table with 4 chairs, dresser, beds, some plates….), but we understand our move into an empty apartment will take time.

We are thankful for what God has provided us these past three months in Portland.  Our sister and Brother in law have provided food and shelter, what an incredible blessing this has been.  Though we will miss their company,  we are excited to finally transition to a place of our own after 6 months of living with others.

Life doesn’t always happen how we expect or want it to.  The rubber meets the road with how we respond to life.  Our family would have not survived these last five years if we hadn’t had a solid foundation in Christ.  Our family’s identity is key to changing the perspective we view our daily lives.  Where did we turn when Jack burned his arm, when we had conflict with our business (how we responded), when we fought and had disagreements (how we sorted through conflict), when our children were disobedient (how we responded).

Please continue to pray for our family as we…

…move into our new apartment and figure out what we need to restart our lives (utensils, pots and pans, toiletries, etc etc etc).  Not just with all the small pieces we are missing, but as we connect with our neighbors and get to know them.

…grow to 6!  Baby Graves 4 is coming within the next 2 weeks(yes possibly before, during or after our move).  We have a bed and a few outfits…depending on whether its a boy or girl we have some donors with clothes waiting!  But its all the other little pieces that we need to still bring together.

…plug into our local church and establishing a community group.  That we would find the right families in the right community.

…adjust to a new job.  As I provide my knowledge and expertise, and in learning my new roles.