Motherhood Series: Meet Kem

On our last day of the #MotherhoodSeries I would like for you to get to know Kem Jackson. She writes what being a grandmother means to her! Kem is the wife to Al, mother to Josh, Hannah, and Naomi, and Mimi to nine wonderful grandchildren! Her husband Al is the pastor at Lakeview Baptist Church in Auburn, Alabama. Kem spends her time discipling young women, visiting with her children and grandchildren, investing in the intern/seminary wives at Lakeview, and is actively involved with the women’s ministry at Lakeview. She and Brother Al mean a great deal to me and Tim and we are forever thankful for the wisdom they have instilled in us!

Kem

 

Our firstborn was getting married soon. I sat him down to have a serious talk. “I think I know what I want for my 50th birthday (I was about to be 47),” I said. He looked at me strangely and said what?! I paused, then said ‘a grandbaby’! I want a grandbaby for my 50th birthday! “Mama,” he said! I responded, “you’ll be finished with law school and in your first year of practice! It will be perfect!” He was surprised I know! But you ‘have not because you ask not’! My request (my dream) came true as by my 50th birthday I had a precious grandson!

Fast forward 14 years and now my husband and I have 9 grands ages 14-2. They are a delight to my heart! Nothing makes me happier than to spend time with them! I look all year long for special treats to put in their Christmas stockings or special surprises to take when I visit them. I love to cook things they love to eat or maybe they cook with me when they come.

There is a small, pink book I keep by my bedside table. In it I have, with dates, those sweet cute things they say. I didn’t do this for my own children so I am making sure I remember these jewels. Some are rewarding. Like after family vacation when Sam said, “these have been the best days of my life”! Or cute phrases they say that become part of our vocabulary, like the ‘wetter and dryer’ or ‘that’s crazy and amazing’! They love for me to get the book out to hear what they or their cousins said when they were little.

Prayer is very important in grandparenting so I write some of mine in the margin of my bible. I am praying for beautiful feet for them (Romans 10:14-15). And their names are all around the page of Ephesians 2:8-9 for salvation, as each enters the years God calls them to Himself. I love to pray for them! As I get older and so do they, I know I can always be part of their lives through prayer. Their world is changing and they are growing up with many temptations, but this grandmother knows where to turn. The bible relieves my worries and fears for their future. It says, ” Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Ephesians 4:6

To see my own children and their spouses raise my grandchildren to know and walk with our God is joy to my heart. It is my privilege to join them in that, to encourage and pray for them to be wise in parenting.

Oh the fun I have…playing ball, having tea parties, trying to beat them at board games (Sorry is my fav!), reading books and having devotions. Yes, my dream came true. The sweetest words I know are ‘Mimi, I love you’!

28 Weeks and Goodbye to Home Sweet Auburn

Last week and this week have proven to be quite eventful for the Mathii family. We started packing up the house last week and have to finish packing it up by this upcoming Friday!

Also, family started coming into town on Friday night for my graduation from Auburn. This past weekend was great as I able to walk across the stage to receive my fake diploma without tripping. πŸ™‚ My parents and Tim planned a surprise lunch for me, my family, and friends to enjoy at Town Creek Park, which was great! It was a busy and exciting day to say the least!

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Funny story..so I thought I was not graduating with honors by 2 hundredths of a point. I had told Tim how disappointed I was about this because if my internship would have counted for a letter grade rather than pass or fail, I would have been boosted up to have honors at graduation. I had made a somewhat big deal about it between the two of us..not that I had to have honors to graduate or seem significant. I eventually got over it, though. After graduation and our after-party, Tim asked me if I stood up when they asked the graduates with certain honors to stand up. I told him, “No, remember I didn’t graduate with honors?” He informed me the program from graduation indicated that I did have honors. I looked the next day and come to find out I did graduate cum laude. Ha! I obviously didn’t know what GPA requirements were for the different honors because I just assumed what they were and I was 2 hundredths of a point away from magna cum laude. And I also didn’t pick up the honors cord that was waiting for me with my cap and gown. Whoops! πŸ™‚

Last week we were also able to go to Columbus to see our little man in 3D and 4D for the first time! It was so much fun and so exciting to see what his face looks like and see him move in real time. We were able to see him swallow, yawn, smile, and grimace. He is the cutest thing ever!! We were amazed at how great technology can be and be able to get an idea of some of his features.

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I made a collage of these pictures for our moms for mother’s day. Don’t worry..I gave them their gifts on Saturday because I couldn’t wait for them to see the pictures! They didn’t know that we had even went to have them done, so it was a nice surprise. πŸ™‚ At 27.5 weeks he weighed 2 lb and 5 oz!

Our little guy is now 28 weeks! He is the size of an eggplant this week. Pregnancy is flying by, but since summer is here I feel like it might start to slow down after this month due to us not being as busy with school. Cam should be able to open and close his eyes now. He also should have some eyelashes.

This Sunday will be a day to put in the books for the Mathii for sure. It will be my first Mother’s Day, our last Sunday at Lakeview, and Tim is being ordained to be a minister of the Gospel!

I am already preparing myself to an emotional wreck come Sunday. Lakeview has meant the world to us over the past 3 years and it is most definitely bittersweet to leave such a beautiful body of Christ! Tim being ordained is a day that we have long awaited for during his internship/seminary years.

We have many memories from our time in Auburn as this was our first home as a married couple. And although it is sad to leave Auburn we know that God has something just as great planned for us in the next season of life. (We just do not know exactly what that is just yet.)

We ask that you continue your prayers for us as we will be living out of our suitcases in the coming weeks and waiting on the Lord to show where to go next. πŸ™‚

25 Weeks and Post-Graduation Update

Wow..25 weeks of being pregnant. This has probably been the fastest season of life I have ever been in. I am sure it seems faster because how crazy busy this semester of school/internship has been.

Our sweet boy is growing, growing, and growing daily! It has been so neat to be able to see him grow with each ultrasound and know he is growing by how strong his movements are becoming. I mean the boy has some muscles! When he has a lot of energy to move one kick/punch will shift one side of my abdomen! I’m sure that he is becoming crammed already due to my short torso, but he probably doesn’t realize he still has to stay in there a while longer. πŸ™‚

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Cam weighs about the same as a rutabaga this week, which is around 1.5 lbs. He is also about 13.5 inches long. From what we can tell from his ultrasounds, he is going to inherit his mom’s long legs. πŸ™‚ He also should have his very own set of fingerprints this week! He is still responding to my voice and music, which is awesome.

There are some very sweet ladies hosting our first baby shower this weekend and I’m really looking forward to it. I pray that these ladies will always have a role in Cam’s life as they have had a role in my life. πŸ™‚

 

Now on to my other fella..the bearded older one. πŸ™‚ Tim is graduating one month from TODAY! Wowzers! Speaking of things flying by..our 3 years at Lakeview has flown by as well.

We are still on the job search as things have fallen through multiple times now with other churches. BUT God is sovereign and seems to constantly open new doors for us. There has been 2 new developments for us in the past 2 days.

So, I ask that you pray with us and these churches’ search committees. Pray that they will find the right man of God for their position. Pray for us that we will continue to be patient and learn what God is trying to teach us through this process/season. We want to serve where the Lord wants us to serve. I also ask that you specifically pray for my precious, precious husband as he is the one carrying this burden for our household and that I may be an encouragement to him through all of this.Β 

Anticipation…

With my Spring Break coming to a close today I have been extremely thankful for my time off to spend with Tim and become reenergized for our final weeks in Auburn. I have been able to sleep in, exercise, watch TV, and spend time with friends all the while seeing Tim all throughout the day this week.

With all this week off Tim and I have been able to have a lot of good conversations of what life will/should look like after our season of life in Auburn is over. It will be so very bittersweet. We have learned immeasurable amounts of knowledge since being here and being in the Lakeview intern program. And our time here has flown by!

I have 4 weeks left of internship and less than 5 weeks until I graduate from Auburn! Tim has less than 7 weeks until his graduation! Our expected last Sunday at Lakeview is May 11th, which is also the day Tim will, Lord willing, be ordained.

The million dollar question of “What are you guys doing after graduation?” still remains unanswered as of right now. We know we will more than likely leave Auburn ASAP due to our support coming to a close and without an income we cannot sustain ourselves in Auburn. So, if there isn’t an immediate ministry opportunity available we will move in with family or friends until so. We especially hope to have a ministry to take part in before Cam makes his arrival. πŸ™‚

The next money question is “Are you excited for what lies ahead after May?” To answer that question we are excited about not having school responsibilities, but we would be head over heels excited once we have a job lined up and to look forward to. πŸ™‚

We anticipate with gladness this new season of life to come and unfold for us! We ask that you continue to pray for the door to be opened to us in God’s timing. Thank you to those who ask us/pray for us about the next stage of life because we know that you care about us.

Busy Last Year of Seminary

It has been far too long since we las updated you on our lives. It is crazy to believe that we over half way through our last fall semester in Auburn. I have already registered Β for my internship next semester!

We are truly trying to make the most of our last few months here by spending time with people here and the Lord has truly crafted our time, especially weekends, to allow that to happen by keeping us busy with school and ministry activities. We want to build relationships here in Auburn that will last and when we leave Auburn we want to look back with happy memories. So, we are trying to be active in our newlywed SS class and spend time with other couples in the same stage of life as us. We have been blessed to form friendships with the Pugh, Wimberly, Werk, Taylor, McAdam, and Barber families.

Tim has been working with missions and administration this fall, while I have been working with 3rd graders. We have been busier than we have ever been before. I am taking 16 hours of school while being in the schools 21 hours per week PLUS homework. I am most definitely looking forward to next semester when all I have to focus on is my wonderful internship!!

My sweet husband has been working hard with his classes as we close to the end of the craziest month ever for us! He has had tons of classes, missions festival, and a conference this month, which has made it busy and very good! The fast pace life is good, but it is also good to slow down and enjoy life. We are in great need of a date night soon. πŸ™‚

This semester I have been incredibly blessed to be mentored by a great friend and fellow Lakeview staff wife, Shannon. She is probably one of the greatest people I have ever known. She is mentoring and keeping me accountable to become a better wife to my husband. While I love Shannon..I love her daughter, Promise, just as much. I am learning more about Shannon and Michael’s adoption process in bring Promise home since that is something Tim and I greatly desire to do.

Also, this semester I have been able to meet weekly with my friend, Margaret. This has been a time of accountablilty for Margaret and where we get to share life together and study God’s Word. Β Margaret is from China and so I have been able to try moon cakes and learn a few Chinese words through her. πŸ™‚ It has been a joy to be able to grow in our friendship and as sisters in Christ.

On a final note, I would like to blog more frequently and I am looking for a way to do that. Would you like to suggest something I could blog about weekly? I do have a list of freezer meals I have thought about posting since I have recently gotten into that, but I am thinking of coming up with a question I can answer weekly…

Have a fabulous weekend! πŸ™‚

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Update on Our Summer…

For those of you who do not receive our newsletter or we have not been around recently, you more than likely do not know that Tim is in Uganda and I am in Auburn. The distance between us is NOT by choice, but otherwise I would not graduate when Tim does and that would delay us from finding a job outside of Auburn. Trust me, I would MUCH rather be where my husband is because that is HOME to me.

Tim and I finished up our spring semesters several weeks ago. I ended finals and class April 26 and Tim finished May 7. I am so thankful for the time we were able to spend together before he left for Uganda and I will be thankful for the time we will spend together when he gets back from his mission. πŸ™‚

The week before he left we were able to spend in Gatlinburg, TN. This trip was supposed to be the annual Lakeview staff meeting, but due to certain things coming the meeting was cancelled. The Pugh’s had graciously offered one of their family member’s timeshares for us to use for the week free of charge and it had already been booked, so Bro. Al gave us the okay to go with the Pugh’s to spend our last week together! I had never been to Gatlinburg before and Tim’s family used to go every year so he was my very own travel guide for this trip. πŸ™‚ God’s creation there was absolutely breath-taking! I am sure Tim got tired of me saying “Look here…Look there…Let’s take a picture with these mountains in the background!” Haha! We were able to just walk and look in shops and tour places. It was a time of great relaxation and fellowshipping with some wonderful friends!

When we got back we had to go straight to packing and making sure we had everything ready for Uganda. It was a sad time for me, but keeping my mind busy helped me to not shed as many tears as my eyes wanted to. I haven’t told Tim this next part yet, but I have been doing some thinking and realize that this is what the Lord had planned. The morning Tim left he woke up to go to the bathroom at about 5:30 AM and then immediately came to wake me up to tell me that the hot water heater had broke and was flooding the laundry room and kitchen. (Just great, right? This is EXACTLY how I wanted to spend my last morning with my husband!) I went and checked everything out while Tim was on the phone calling our dads to figure out how to turn the water heater off and calling the water company after we figured out the valve was broke and needed ALL of our water off. I then go and grab all the towels I can hold out of the linen closet and start trying to block in the water to where it would not go under the washer and dryer and enter the living room. It took the water company over 1 hour to get to our house to turn off the water.

I won’t go into the rest of the details, but we did get all the water off the floor and the plumber came two days later to put in the new water heater and to turn the water back on. I realize that the Lord had this all planned because I probably would have spent the entire morning sobbing and having a pity party for myself because Tim was leaving. God did not want me to waste my time doing those things and instead he kept me busy mopping the floors and pouring buckets of water out the back door. πŸ™‚ And the next few days I had family and friends calling to check on me and my water situation, so I was able to not feel completely alone. God thought of this. He thought of me and planned this out. I was forced to rely on Him to provide a way for me to take showers and wash clothes. So, I am truly thankful that our hot water heater broke that day.

Anyways, Tim is safe in Uganda and doing some traveling this week into different villages and conducting surveys with some unreached, unengaged people groups. I am thankful for the times I am able to talk to him and for the times I am able to get a picture or FaceTime him. He is really enjoying his time there and the people he is working with. I will have to get him to blog about his time there when he gets back because he has some AWESOME stories to tell about God’s grace and sovereignty. πŸ™‚

If you would like to receive pictures or updates on “exactly” what he is doing and how his time has been, please let me know and I will add you to my list. Please intercede for him during this time and the people he is sharing the gospel with for the very first time or for the 100th time!

 

Life is but a blur…

Since Christmas our weekends have been booked to the max and last weekend was our first weekend at home since we took our anniversary trip to Black. Needless to say it was beyond needed and relaxing for us both.

The month of January Tim was either at Lakeview, a conference, or a class all but 2 days! It was definitely a crazy month for the Mathii, and February did not disappoint us either in that aspect. He is really looking forward to getting into his classes and learning more about systematic theology and Greek. Tim is actually in class right now and was yesterday, too.

My (MaeLee) school schedule has been OUT. OF. CONTROL. It really has been super crazy and stressful. Right now I am a part of 5 different group projects and I have taken 3 midterms with two more to go. I am placed at 3 different schools, which I am at 4 times per week outside of 17 hours of class I am taking. The highlight of this semester has most definitely been being in the schools so much! I am loving my times with different students and learning how to be the best teacher I can be. The teachers that I get the opportunity to work with are outstanding and there are many characteristics of theirs that I hope to take on and possess.

What I am most thankful for this semester is that I am in only education classes that relate to what I am majoring in and that is SUCH a blessing. It is a blessing because I am finally focusing everything on my major, Elementary Education, and because of that I am doing really well in all of my classes, which is GREAT! I am really hoping and striving for all As this semester and as of right now that is what I have in all of my classes..hoping it stays that way too!

Places we have been recently: Abbeville (For D-NOW), Monroeville, Mobile (with my family to take Tim to Mardi Gras for the first time), Panama City Beach (for marriage retreat), and Eufaula (for Tim’s Paw-Paw’s surprise birthday party).

Here are a couple of pictures to recap a couple of our trips:

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543515_4792271757286_1849371449_nThis is at Mardi Gras in Mobile with Tim and my Daddy.

This picture is just for you all to see the cutest 3 year olds that there ever was. πŸ™‚

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New Year, New Schedules

We hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and new year with your family and friends. We enjoyed our time together with our families over the the holiday season. We went to Black, AL, where Tim’s dad’s side of the family meets every summer for family reunions, for a few days of being alone together. From there we went to Eufaula, AL to spend time with Tim’s mom’s side of the family for a few days. We had our Christmas celebration with them and got to spend some sweet time with our wonderful niece, Alexis. πŸ™‚

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From Eufaula we went to spend Christmas Eve night in Goodway, AL. This was the first time I(MaeLee) have been home for Christmas in 3 years. Needless to say, my parents were thrilled to have me and Tim there for Christmas Eve and Christmas day. We spent a few days there and got to spend the night and hang out with my Paw-Paw. You guys do not even know how much we love my Paw-Paw. He is always the highlight of our trips to see my family, especially since we lost my Gran-Gran last March. We also got to see some more of our favorite people, the Dunns and Butlers, while in Goodway, which means we got to see our other favorite little girl, Lenora! πŸ™‚

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We came back to Auburn for a few days of rest before hitting the road again. We celebrated in the New Year with some more of our favorite people, the Taylors! It was a night full of games and laughter! We left New Year’s Day for Louisville, KY with the Wimberlys. Kaleb and Tim took a Greek review class for free while Lindsay and I slept in at the hotel and hung out around Louisville. We were able to meet with some of the Wimberlys’ friends and have dinner with one of Tim’s professors and his family. I was so excited to go see Louisville and SBTS, where Tim is a student. We (mainly just me) enjoyed the cold weather to the fullest. We were all really hoping for snow, but it had melted by the time we arrived. (Such a Debbie Downer!) Other than getting stuck in traffic for a couple of hours on the way there, a good time was had by all of us!

Since our return from Kentucky, we both hit the ground running with responsibilities for work and school. Tim has been at Lakeview every day since we go back with some type of responsibility. We have had Week of Prayer, David Platt, Harry Reeder, and many other things happening at Lakeview. This past weekend we were leaders for FUEL! Fuel is a weekend for the youth to grow deeper in their relationships with the Lord and have an overload of fellowship with each other. Tim had 8th grade boys and I had 9th grade girls. It was definitely a weekend of renewal and exhaustion! We are both so thankful for opportunities to work with youth and use our gifts for the Lord in that manner since we both have a desire to work with them after graduation.

I am placed at three different schools this semester for my education program and I am SO excited about it! Reading, math, and P.E. for me this semester and all of these subjects require me to come up with my own lesson plans. Making lesson plans for the first time is a rather frightening thought to me, but I am up for the challenge!

So, this is our little update on the Mathii. Hope you have a great rest of the week and weekend! Love you guys!