Monday, January 28, 2008

the purpose of life is to discover your gift.
the meaning of life is giving your gift away.

Friday, January 25, 2008

140 children are going to school.
with uniforms and shoes and socks and supplies and meals and everything.

busy doesnt begin to describe it.
more joy than i can handle doesnt either.


Sunday, January 20, 2008

she called me mommy.
my heart swelled up into my throat. i have only known these little people 4 days and i feel a love for them that is different than my love for anyone else. this is love that wants to protect, and comfort and take away all pain. this is a love that consumes my every move. she called me mommy.

our God is a God of miracles. about an hour ago, my oldest daughter was discharged from the hospital with the diagnosis of a broken collar bone and some soft tissue damage. of all things that could have happened to her (she was under a brick wall for goodness sake!) she has only these injuries, both of which will heal just fine with some time and care. tonight she will spend her first night with her sisters at my house. unfortunately, my bed was crammed enough last night with only my self and two of my girls in it, there is no way all three of us will fit in there. so they will sleep in their very own room across the hall. today after church we went out to lunch and scovia and maria tasted ice cream for the first time. the faces they made were priceless; i guess they didnt expect it to be so cold. they also discovered the joy of the bathtub a few days ago, and i think they have taken about twenty baths since they have moved in.

maybe i will never sleep past seven in the morning and maybe i will never have time to brush my hair and maybe i will never be able to eat a full meal without getting up and down a million times. its worth it. maybe it will always take me twice as long to do everything and maybe i will never have a really clean house and maybe my days of staying out late with friends are over. its worth it. anything i have to give up is worth just that one minute when they look at me and call me mom, when those little hands grab mine and those big eyes look at me as if i hold the keys to the world. its worth it.

sometimes i dont know what God i doing in my life or why. but every day His plan is better than mine. and every day i am just so glad that He is in charge, not me!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

January 13

“What is it? I know that you love Africa, but I’m just not sure why. So what is it?”
Let me tell you a story…

It is Sunday morning and church is packed with beautiful, mahogany people dressed in their Sunday best. Amidst all the noise and cheerful greeting of neighbors, one hardly notices the small boy, who slips through the crowd to stand in a corner. The boy is about twelve, though small for his age of course. His clothes are torn and his barefoot, cracked, dirty feet are evidence that he has walked many miles to join us this morning. He carries with him a small instrument that he has made of wood and scrap metal, and though it looks like trash, soon we will learn that it makes beautiful music.

As the pastor enters, the boy humbly asks him if he can play a song for our church. He has walked all night from a Muslim community to join us here and he has been practicing this song for as long as he can remember. He is ready to play it for us and for the Lord. For a child of only twelve years, he is quite solemn. It is obvious how important this song is to him, how necessary that the song be perfect for his Master. His face is serious and concentrated. The song is practiced; he will not make a mistake. Despite the boy’s tremendous effort though, a smile begins to slowly creep over his face. He begins to sing and the song is transforming him. His smile spreads to engulf his whole face and he is singing at the top of his lungs. It is as if something contained deep in His soul has burst, he cannot restrain it any longer. Now he is jumping, so full of joy that he cannot contain it. Now we are all jumping, clapping, singing, dancing. We are moving, all together as one, so full of the hope of our Savior, so full of the delight and grace of our Lord that we cannot sit still. And in this moment, I never want to stop jumping. I never want to leave this room so full of the Holy Spirit that I can feel Him like electricity pumping through my veins, so alive with God’s love and promises that all we can do is dance.

So here I am. And one day I will leave, but I will always come back because my heart will remain. THAT is what it is, that is why. The joy of the Lord bubbling up inside me until i threaten to burst. The God inside of me and all around me who makes me dance.