What a whirlwind these last few days have been. So much happening simultaneously, I don't even know where to begin.
I guess the most appropriate place would be acknowledging the horrific destruction in Japan. Unimaginable as a reality. The images are just too much to take in, and it's heartbreaking to think of people living and dying in the midst of that. An earthquake powerful enough to shift the earth on it's axis? Puts a lot of things into perspective, doesn't it? Say and prayer and give. Give.
I had the great pleasure of going to hear Beth Moore teach on Friday and Saturday. Good friend time, good worship time, good learning time, good hearing time. I have yet to process and absorb everything, but it was so impactful. I heard confirmation in truckloads. Things that have been stirring around in me were addressed specifically. Even my last blog post about significance? All that was just the Lord tuning my ear to the right pitch for this weekend. Because I heard some things loud and clear. I was primed and ready to hear. At one point, I looked at Marlece with big tears in my eyes and said, "I think I could go home now and feel quite filled up!" And that was in the first hour. If you've never read anything from her or done one of her Bible studies, you really would be blessed to do that. She is hysterically funny and passionate and just a lovely, lovely lady. She's my second favorite Beth. My third favorite would be Laura Ingalls, who of course you remember was called "Beth" by Almonzo. There I go again on a tangent....I haven't the energy to fight it.
Home Saturday for an hour and a half of the most glorious mid-day sleep I have had since the last time I enjoyed mid-day sleep. And that was....I can't even remember when. It was just what I needed, complete with a cat curled up beside me. As soon as I was up from the nap, before even the cobwebs had cleared, Brad and I left for a run. And let me tell you, Spring is truly in the air!! Granted this was late afternoon, but there was no cold bit to the air! We had some rain, but it was not stinging cold!! We even saw a beautiful, full rainbow. And a first occurred. A FIRST that I will not soon forget. We were almost 4 miles in when I had to use the facilities. Urgently. I've often wondered what would happen in this situation. We were prepared to run down to the closest business, about a mile away, and I wasn't so sure I would make it. And then....a sight I NEVER DREAMED would thrill me: a PORTA-POTTY!! I have had porta-potty issues as far back as I can remember. Don't even get me started. Some in my life know how serious I am about avoiding porta-potties for myself and everyone I care about. But on this run? It truly was a blessing from heaven. I gave no thoughts as to who had been there before me. I gave no thoughts as to any germ or disease or anything that I may encounter upon opening the door. Nope. I was as glad to see that porta-potty as I am glad to see that there's a coupon for chocolate chips at Costco right now. Thrilled.
Home for showers and some dinner and then off to Repossess. What a full way to end the day. A day that started with 6300 women singing "How He Loves". I was really struck by how many silver and white haired ladies were there this weekend. It was so sweet. I love that at that age they are still desiring to learn, grow, and receive more and more of the love of God. And during that particular song, I was thinking about those ladies. They must each have such a story of a lifetime of experiences, loss, and loves. And to watch them scattered throughout this crowd, singing about being personally loved by their God. It was a beautiful moment.
Good times with sweet friends, Rachel & Marlece
The other Beth in my life.
And then, late in the day watching hundreds of teens singing the same song? It was very full-circle, very touching. A love that spans generations.
Finally home, my son then sat and told us story after story of all he'd experienced during the day. We were up until 1:30 in the morning, hearing stories of a young man learning to reach out to people who need some hope. He walked around downtown with three others and just talked to people, reached out to them, let them know they were loved by God. One man was a recovering addict who was only 7 months sober, navigating a brand new life. Alex was able to pray for him, and that story was a precious one. And another young homeless man, who Alex had three conversation with. He had left to go back to meet his group and decided to turn around and go have one more conversation. So he approached him again, called him by name, and asked if he wanted to invite Christ into his life. The man eagerly said he did, and Alex prayed with him again. He then sprinted the 2 blocks back to his bus to get this young man a Bible. Just hearing Alex describe the look on this man's face when he received the Bible, the way he clutched it to his chest, the way he smiled...it makes me so thankful for a young man that is learning to truly see every person for who they are: and individual that is dearly loved by God. All the other stuff is just stuff. At our core, we are all the same. We all just need His love.
And then that doggone lost hour of sleep? I was good for nothing today. Nothing but reflecting on so much goodness crammed into one weekend. My heart is full.