What a day! Here’s a speedy version of the day – Bible study at 7:30am, went straight to work, went straight to Dan’s parents for supper, went home to put jeans on and went straight to the Young Life banquet, and then hung out with one of our dear youth group kids. Nutso! But I look back on the events of the day, and there is surely a lot to be thankful for.
I woke up this morning a little down again, but after I let it all out at Bible study, I felt a whole lot better. Speaking from the heart and just saying how it is, is so freeing! Another part of the Thanks Living that we were studying, was making sure our lives are a testimony of praise. I said straight up to everyone – how can I be thankful in all this? Seriously? (And maybe I mentioned that before)…but I struggled with that. But rationality kicked in and I thought, how SELFISH! God has blessed me with the ability to see, walk, talk, feel, etc. So my heart is literally broken- but I can function like a “normal” person. I took one little issue in my life and let it affect me as a whole. I know I was not very “Christian” in saying that, but it was real. And I regret thinking that and for that I need to repent, but I had to deal with that and get over it. I could write a book on how much I have to be thankful for!! Here are just a few…
While at the store today, I was blessed by seeing others act out there faith. There was a man who came in the bookstore, Eugene, who wanted to buy a few inexpensive gifts for some people. He had put a “down payment” (we never do that, and the item was only $30) on a plaque, but he wanted to make sure he got it, so he put what money he had each time he came in, towards it. Well, today he could pay it in full, but he didn’t have enough money for the other gifts and for a bus ride home. I told him I could “run in back” to get some more (I was just going to get the $2 out of my wallet to pay for the rest of it), but a young gentleman came up to me and asked how much he needed. I told him like 2 or 3 dollars and he said, okay, is that it? I told him that that was up to him. He pulled out his wallet and gave me $15.00 to give to Eugene. That was more than enough and he told me to tell the man to keep the change basically. I paid for the gifts with that $15.00 and told Eugene a brother in Christ wanted to help him out. Eugene wanted to thank that young man in person, but I told him that he was always so willing to bless others with gifts, that the young man wanted to bless him. It was just so cool to witness that and it was so challenging in my faith. I wish everyone could meet Eugene – he can barely walk – he needed help getting out of a chair b/c he’s so fragile, but talk about a man of God!! (This type of story happens more often too :)).
Another Thanks Living event today…we went to the Young Life banquet and one of Dan’s old professors at Kuyper College spoke there. It was GREAT to see him again and we were able to catch him afterwards and talk with him. To hear the encouragement to continue in the race marked out for us, was unbelievable. We walked away even MORE on fire. He was encouraging in the sense that in youth ministry, it’s something that people don’t always “see” results. You can’t document the success in a report. You can’t throw out numbers to say this is how we are doing. It’s something we have to believe in and trust that God is continuing to use us. That’s what we needed to hear!! God has given us a mission here on earth to reach out to youth and we will continue to do that until He calls us differently. I am excited to be a part of that path!
I also received a beautiful card today that talked about a rainbow, what that symbolizes, and how it shines through the dark clouds, even on the darkest of days, representing God’s faithful promises to us. And it was just a reminder that we are not in this alone and that people are praying! Like I’ve said before, those messages of hope come when God knows we need them most!
And finally…I want to thank God for teaching me that I am NOT my own, but belong BODY and soul, to my faithful Savior, Jesus Christ. I’ve had times of doubt and I’m sure I will have more times of doubt. But each day I am realizing more and more how I can not deal with this on my own and realize more and more how much I need my SAVEior. This has been a humbling day for me as you can see and God is continuing to teach me day in and day out!