Monday, September 16, 2013

A crazy busy week, because it's important

Even my girls were allowed in the party girls pic!

I went back through pictures from our summer and it seemed to me that the theme was {aside from moving} PEOPLE.  Even in the middle of our busiest and most chaotic weeks, we had other people in the picture. Teens during summer study, friends helping us with our transition, family birthday parties and labor day festivities. Just people everywhere. The above picture is of a middle school girls birthday party that we were included in - such a sweet family, and so thoughtful to invite her ol' youth pastor and wife. :) I actually treasure this picture because it reminds me every time I see it - PEOPLE MATTER. They matter in the good times and even in the chaotic when you can't imagine squeezing in one more person to love. 

Backyard BBQ & car show at church

Not that I am Jesus. Obviously. But He did come to mind a few times this summer in that, I was ready for a break from people. I even needed a rest, no more talking, no more caring... If I had to listen to one more heartbreak or really even one more rejoicing, I was going to lose it. But then I remembered thanks to the Holy Spirit's prodding...Christ's compassion and love for people. Even in moments of such trial for him, like this one after John the Baptist was beheaded.

13" Now when Jesus heard this, he withdrew from there in a boat to a desolate place by himself. But when the crowds heard it, they followed him on foot from the towns. 14 When he went ashore he saw a great crowd, and he had compassion on them and healed their sick. 15 Now when it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a desolate place, and the day is now over; send the crowds away to go into the villages and buy food for themselves.” 16 But Jesus said, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.” 17 They said to him, “We have only five loaves here and two fish.” 18 And he said, “Bring them here to me.” 19 Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass, and taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven and said a blessing. Then he broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 20 And they all ate and were satisfied. And they took up twelve baskets full of the broken pieces left over. 21 And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children." Matthew 14

Now, I'm not Jesus, I have a sin nature and I'm not the perfect son of God. But what an awesome picture to me of the selflessness of our savior. When His heart was broken over the death of his friend and all he wanted was a quiet moment alone - His passion and compassion for the people outweighed his personal desires. I WANT TO BE LIKE THAT! I want to put my big girl pants on and just love people no matter what. 

But I know my temptation. I really, really, really, like my time alone. I really like evenings with JUST my family and I really like keeping on MY routine with my children. {Which, for the record I don't believe is wrong at all...and is super beneficial!}But over the summer and even now into the next season I'm learning and being taught how important it is to LOVE people, to include them in life, and to reach into theirs. 
Girls night for my birthday! Love these ministry minded ladies!
The fall adds several new things to our schedule and at first I balked and pouted: more time outside of our home, more nights of ministry, more messed up routines, less me time. But I can honestly tell you that over the last few weeks I have caught the vision and I'm actually PUMPED about it. Because what else is this life for if not for sharing Jesus, opening our hearts and homes to people who need Him, and teaching my children that the world doesn't revolve around them?! 
Summer Son party at a local park, our teens missions trip - my 4 year old was a helper!
In two weeks-ish (Woot woot!) we'll be in our new home and the very next weekend we'll have a whole gang of junior highers piled inside. And while the task ahead of me is BIG and will require a lot of patience, self control, and love - I'm up for the challenge and asking the Lord to refine and use me in this new life. And as always, I'd love and appreciate your prayers. This week is a doozy and will be a test to see if I really mean what I write here. Leaning on You, Lord. The truth is, I know I'll fail and dozen times or more - and maybe the lesson is even in that. Because it's not about me, it never is, and I'll be all the more dependent on the Lord's strength in my life. But, it's worth it!

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