Friday, June 28, 2013

On Earth as It is In Heaven

The week before last was unbelievable and I was on a spiritual high. It was such a gift from God because I could just feel heaven breaking through in very tangible ways and through me as an agent!

On Monday, Tey prayed to ask Jesus to be his forever friend. On Sunday night before bed we had read a book about Jesus and he asked a lot of questions. He told me then that he wanted to pray the next day to ask Jesus into his heart. I had completely forgotten about it, until out of the blue he reminded me. I played devil's advocate to make sure this was what he wanted to do and he didn't feel pressured or anything. Then I re-explained salvation in terms he could understand and drew him a picture. Corban drew a different one and explained it in his words, which were very similar to this:

Then we all held hands and I led him through prayer. That instantly changed the mood of the day, when it started off with me being a total crabby pants.

On Tuesday, I had my last Disciple Bible study through my church. It has been an intensive past 10 months, but I have grown so close to a handful of powerful women for God. I've also delved more deeply into scripture than I ever have before. This study has brought up several more questions for me and several topics that I am still chewing on, but overall it has strengthened my desire to follow the way of Jesus Christ as I have come to understand it and his call on my life. On this last day we took turns talking about each other's spiritual gifts. I was enlightened, challenged and inspired as each of these women concurred with what another said about how God uniquely created me to contribute to my community and my world. One gift was being outspoken and truthful on social justice issues, so I think I need to gain more confidence in sharing about what God lays on my heart, particularly about what is not mainstream among Christians. Thanks, gals for seeing me how God sees me!

On Wednesday, we got to take care of our second Safe Families child. Another family is hosting and we volunteered to provide childcare during the day as both host parents work full time.
Do not forget to entertain strangers, 
for by so doing some people have entertained angels 
without knowing it.

- Hebrews 13:2
Indeed this newborn is an angel and I know it! 

Thursday was insanity as I prepared for the weekend ahead. On Friday I brought the children to the Prairie Wildlife State Park because I won tickets to Enlightenment Day of their Olde English Faire. Basically it's like a Renaissance faire, but a greater focus on teaching. Then we raced home in an insane storm to prepare for a our Great American Backyard Campout to celebrate Bean turning seven and Tey turning five. The rains didn't dampen the spirits of my kids and their friends during the 16 hours we spent partying (well, some sleeping too). 
Making and maintaining friendships is an important lifelong lesson that has been an intentional but difficult process for my kids. Seeing my children enjoying their friends' company and having fun outdoors together is an answered prayer in the making over the past handful of months. I had fun too! Who wouldn't love it when you're scarfing down grilled meats, catching fireflies, finding nature's treasures in a scavenger hunt, roasting s'mores, and just having a lot of free play?

After our friends packed up their tents (and one camper) and headed home, I headed to Indianapolis to the airport. Friends of ours were arriving from Ethiopia with their adoptive son. Talk about answered prayer! I've been praying for their adoption journey longer than my own children's social development! It was quiet an honor to be there to witness this most precious moment when their four year old daughter came running to welcome them home and to meet her little brother for the first time as they passed through the arrival gate.

I still can't help looking at this and getting flooded with emotions. The love of this family is just overflowing out of this picture and is contagious. I just happened to capture this shot, turning my simple camera phone into an instrument of spreading God's love to and hundreds of people who saw it on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and felt a joy come over them.

I'm not sure if I will ever fall into a pit of despair when my faith will be tried and I will doubt God's existence or love for me. If I ever do, please refer me to this post. It is just so clear to me that when I am willing and commited, God can use me...imperfect, broken me, in community with other believers, to help his kingdom come, his will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

Update: So that picture got a lot of exposure between my friends and I through our Facebook and Instagram accounts. Then Jeremiah tweeted it in response to Sports Illustrated writer Richard Deitsch's question to his followers if they had a pictures of the single best moment of their life. Because of that one tweet, my picture of them has been on national television! First on Good Morning America then on CBS Evening News, and Fox and Friends Weekend. It was included on BuzzFeed too. Deitsch started a website called as a collection of the pictures that came in. How unbelievable is that! It's great to be part of Good News ;)

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