Monday, February 20, 2012

how would you rate it?

I sit here this morning enjoying a President's Day break from school. I must get up and moving soon - it's going to be a busy, busy week for me. I've got a two day Benchmark committee meeting in Little Rock in the middle of the week, and then a weekend youth conference in Rogers. I'll leave straight from school tomorrow, come home on Thursday to switch bags, head out again on Friday, and return home, exhausted, sometime Sunday evening. Today I have to get laundry done and bags packed.

But I'm ready to face the busyness. My weekend was good. My Sunday was great.

Last year our church and community were in constant prayer for Mrs. Clara as she started her recovery from a liver transplant; yesterday she sang a special in church. She looked beautiful and healthy and a bit blurry - many of us were looking at her through thankful tears.

And then UMY at night. We had so much to discuss - last minute info about our upcoming trip to Veritas 2012. T-shirts aren't here yet. There is a one bag limit. Times for leaving and returning. Where we'll be staying. All on top of our lesson.

Brooke and I were a little disappointed when we realized that several of the kids weren't coming. Some were out of town for the long weekend. Some had gone to WinterJam. It just all landed on one night - the night we needed everyone there. That's the way it goes sometimes.

And then the lesson started. And we realized that even in this (especially in this?), God was in control. I was cleaning up after supper as the lesson started. I could hear the kids naming the things that are important in their lives and then ordering them 1-10. Of course, they put God at the top of the list. But there was some discussion about where everything else fit. And then someone mentioned that God doesn't want to just be at the top, separated and isolated; He wants to be a part of it all. Shortly after that I was able to join the group. We discussed our personal relationship with God - on a scale of 1-10, where would you rate your relationship? And that's where it really kicked in. Honest answers from everyone. Discussions about the difference in praying our words and listening for God's words and knowing that you are in God's presence and wondering, hoping, longing for that feeling again.

About those t-shirts we are waiting for - Brooke and I let the kids plan what they wanted for the design. They are very simple. A cross and flame on the front left shoulder and on the back a Bible verse. Chosen by the kids. With no fluff. No artwork to distract for the words.
Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.
1 Timothy 4:12
And what an example they are!

And if you still don't believe that God is in control of it all, let me just give you this. We left church last night with our minds on our personal relationship with Him and longing to make it better; we are returning this weekend to our statewide youth conference. Since our first visit to Veritas last year, the kids have been ready to go back - always speaking of how they felt God's presence at the conference last year. And last night's lesson that worked to focus our hearts and minds? It probably should have been done about two weeks ago. But one Sunday a few weeks back we had some bad weather that forced us to cancel youth and send the kids home early with no lesson done. And then last Sunday, Brooke and I were just wiped out after a full weekend of banqueting and let the kids know that we wouldn't be meeting for youth on Sunday night.

I never cease to be amazed.

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