2018 Christmas Letter

December 25, 2018

Galatians 4:4-5

“But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.”

Dear Friends and Family,

If there’s one thing I often wish I could put on my Christmas list, it’s time. We never seem to have enough of it these days. It moves swiftly as a river and and we have no ability to slow it down as much as we’d like to. We want our kids to stay young, our bodies to stay strong and our possessions to last forever. We want to savor the sweet moments, but we also want to skip over those moments that contain pain and sadness. If we’re honest, we simply want more control over time itself. Yet time is the beautiful creation of God, carefully designed and revealed to perfection. Galatians 4 says that God allowed time to reach its fullness before unveiling His incredible plan of salvation - His Son Jesus. Without the precise passage of time, how could it reach its fullness? God, in His wisdom, pours out this river of time in just the right measure. And this pouring brings glory to God and joy to the world as we can now receive the most precious gift - adoption into His family. Here are some memories from the past year in the life of our family.

Elliott turned 9 this year and has grown into a tall, skinny young man. This year he continued playing soccer on our local parks league team and shows some good aptitude for the sport. And having his parents as the coaches made it even more fun! He also decided to try baseball in the spring and did quite well on the beginners team. He continues to advance his piano skills through his lessons and enjoys trying to figure out the piano riffs he hears at church on Sundays. In school, Elliott is a great student, always brimming with excitement when he gets home and telling us the things that his class is working on. Both boys became interested in fishing this summer and Elliott was thrilled to reel in a good sized bass on West Silent Lake. He loves biking, reading and playing with his best friend Zachary.

Speaking of Zachary, he celebrated his 7th birthday on a blazing hot July afternoon with some of his friends. He also enjoys school and says his favorite part is still recess. He also voiced his desire to ride the bus to school, so this fall he and Elliott started that adventure. Their bus group is a good one and they have often spent the ride talking about and trading Pokemon cards. Zachary worked very hard in the spring to master his two wheel bike and succeeded as summer arrived. He also spent time hunting monarch caterpillars during the summer and he and Elliott sheltered and released more than two dozen butterflies. One of Zachary’s highlights from the year was spring break when our family spent two days at Great Wolf Lodge. The giant waterpark provided plenty of fun for both boys and parents (in the middle of a spring blizzard!).

In July we celebrated America’s birthday with Duluth fireworks and Becky’s parents. Later that month, we relaxed with my parents at the Carlson cabin on West Silent Lake. In October, we spent a weekend in Fargo with my entire family celebrating some birthdays. My grandfather Howard Carlson was also present, which was so special because he passed away just a few weeks later at age 93. There were smiles and tears as many members of our large extended family gathered together in November to say goodbye and share so many memories.

Becky and I continue to enjoy our jobs, and praise God for the gift it is to raise two of God’s precious creations. Our days are always full, but our hearts are always more so.

May the good news of Christ’s birth, death and resurrection carry you through this new year! Merry Christmas!

With Love,

Peter, Becky, Elliott and Zachary Carlson