However, my heart is at home. 'Nuff said.
Mitch finished his Old Testament sermon series today (well, he might have one more sermon up his sleeve regarding the depression of Elijah). It has been refreshing to read, see, taste, and listen to the gospel weaved into the usual stories of the Bible that most have heard from childhood - Noah, David, Daniel, Elisha, Elijah.... I have also enjoyed watching Andrew listen and later ask questions about the true stories. The gospel is penetrating his heart and it's a neat and wonderful miracle to witness. Andrew is understanding the Truth that there is only one true God and that He sent a Savior to rescue him from his evil, dirty, wretched heart. I pray that Andrew knows the love of the Father and how he pursues with such passion. Amazing grace!
As I picked Andrew up today from his weekend visit with his uncle, he and I had great conversation in the car about all the fun things he did with my brother - fishing, swimming, and playing golf. But, when I asked him to tell me his most FAVORITE thing he did over the weekend, he said, "It was just spending time with the family at the house and going to Uncle S's gigantic church." WOW! Relationships are such a huge impact on our heart, huh? How incredible to hear him say those deep words.
But then, after such sweet exchanges of words, I got impatient with Andrew when he wouldn't move fast enough out of the car while in a parking lot. He had said he was hungry but seemed to be taking waaaaaay too much [of my] time acting on it. After I firmly (and too harshly) said his name three times from behind the car, he came around and said, "I was trying to hurry, Mama, but papers kept falling out of the car and I was just trying to put them back in so you could have them later." What a selfish worm I am. His eyes were wet with tears and I was the cause of them. Instead of building him up, I tore him down - all while he was serving me. Kind of reminded me of how the people screamed "Crucify him!" after just worshiping Jesus a few days prior.
Speaking of relationships, I almost lost it today behind the microphone at church while singing the congregational hymns. Every Sunday I get the joy of being able to stand in front of such beautiful people and make eye contact, receive smiles, watch children, notice families, and witness worship. Upon scanning faces today, there were at least five of my friends crying with their faces lifted to the sky, singing the words:
Oh to grace how great a debtor
Daily I'm constrained to be
Let your goodness like a fetter
Bind my wandering heart to thee
Prone to wander, Lord I feel it
Prone to leave the God I love
Here's my heart Lord,
Take and seal it
Seal it for thy courts above
Jesus sought me while a strangerWandering from the heart of GodAnd He to rescue me from dangerUsed his own precious blood.I saw Jesus in that room this morning. He was showing himself though so many personal stories in our church - the gospel woven into families as they await the arrivals of their adopted children, grieve through broken marriages, suffer from chronic sickness, are heartbroken from miscarriages, frustration with money, lost friendships, worries about parenting, lonely due to death, and weary from their mundane life. I saw people clinging to the cross as I looked across the room - and I was filled with hope! Mitch finished his sermon with this Scripture passage:Lamentations 3:22-24 ~The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
his mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
“therefore I will hope in him.”I am blessed...beyond measure.