Blog - Portraits

PORTRAITS: Great Expectations

“Remember who you are and who you represent.” Jon’s mom always said the same thing to him as he headed out the door to hang out with friends, and the words trailed after him and echoed in his head. “Remember who you are and who you represent.” “She meant for those words to keep me grounded and focused on what was really important,” said Jon. “But every time I heard them, I piled a little more pressure on myself to live up to what I thought was expected of me.”

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PORTRAITS: A Bigger Plan

Traffic was terrible that day. They were going to be late. Emma stared out the window deep in thought as Craig tried to maneuver the car to creep ahead an extra inch or two. Giving up on their usual route, Craig took a detour. Jersey City scrolled monotonously past the window, and then Emma saw it: the word “ADOPT” spray-painted on the side of a building, as they drove to the clinic to start a cycle of IVF.

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PORTRAITS: Love for the Days in Between

“I couldn’t understand," says Luisa. "How could God do this to me? How could He do this to my kids? Was it punishment? What did I do? How could He take Neil away? We had just had a baby.” People told Luisa to cling to her faith after her husband died, but that just made her angrier. She wanted nothing to do with God. If God cared about her heart He wouldn’t have broken it, she thought. She went from desperate anger to having nothing to say to Him.

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PORTRAITS: Stepping Off the Stage

“God kept on coming back to me and telling me that we could get through this together,” says Jen. “He said it would be hard, but that it was time for me to stretch, time for me to grow, time for me to trust Him. And He promised me that I would learn a whole lot about Him and myself in the process.”

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PORTRAITS: Making Room

Shivering in Harvard Yard might not be everyone’s dream, but it was Chloe’s. And just a few years ago that dream of visiting an iconic Ivy League school seemed completely out of reach. That’s because Chloe was born in North Korea, a country that labels those who leave as defectors and imposes harsh punishments on any family members who stay behind.

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PORTRAITS: Finding Value

In the seven years after graduating from college, Diane has moved four times. And as she moved in and out of apartments, up and down the East Coast, her sense of self-worth was just as unsettled as her living situation.

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Our Top 10 Blog Posts of 2015

The more than 100 blog posts written on this site in 2015 chronicle a year of hope, courage, vulnerability, trust, obedience and gratitude. They demonstrate growth in faith, growth in character and the expansion of our church community. But most of all, these are stories of love – about the ways we have learned to love one another and the […]

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PORTRAITS: Financial Peace Changes Lives

In 2010, Rico Mangalindan lost his job of 12 years and was almost deported. He talks about it very openly, because those experiences have become a huge part of his testimony. “Phillipians 4:12 is one of my favorite verses,” he explains. “Because I can relate to knowing what it is like to be in need and knowing what it is […]

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