Happy {all} Holidays!!

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One of our most faithful supporters is Northridge Baptist in San Angelo, Texas.  When we asked if they were interested and willing to send us a box to supply all our holiday-party-throwing needs, they quickly and gladly said yes.

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Jaymie and I talked about the parties and the ideas I had, and just like old times, she added some input and we came up with a good plan.  Next year, I’m going to do all I can to get her here for the holidays to help host these parties!  We also came up with a pretty extensive list…

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The good people there weren’t intimidated by said list, and sent over and above all the things we needed!

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My girls kept saying, “We are going to have the best Christmas parties EVER!!”  The Fall decorations were immediately set out on display, and we were able to dig into the pile of goodies just two days later when we hosted a Thanksgiving party.  One of our greatest outreach opportunities come in the form of holiday parties.  We can share the Good News in a non-threatening environment, and many people hear the Truth they have been searching their whole lives for.

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I wish I could have truly captured the amount of stuff crammed into this box.  It was like it kept coming out!  We started by making piles on the table, and quickly had to move the box to the floor when we ran out of room.  But then, with the box still half full, we ran out of room on the table again.  We had to pull out shopping bags to organize the goodies into craft, food, and small gift categories.  The blessing of everything in this box is immeasurable.  The generosity of the Body overwhelmed us, and we are so thankful to be on this journey with Northridge serving alongside us!

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Unexpected Blessings.

Sometimes He sends us blessings that are these tiny glimpses of His glory, yet they fill our hearts with an overwhelming feeling of love and care.

We had one of those Saturday night.

It was a normal plan to hang out at the beach the have dinner with our supervisor.  He said he was with friends.  I didn’t think too much about this and expected to see him and his wife with some of their friends.  I would play in the water and come home tanned (more freckles), tired, and happy.

Father had another plan entirely.

Instead of who I had assumed would be joining us, two men I had never met, wearing pants and polo shirts (not really beach ready attire in my opinion), walked up to our table with our super.  Hmm.  Okay…

They sat down with grins on their faces and with the sweetest southern drawls introduced themselves as leaders of clubs in America.  Southern America.  They were here teaching some seminars to the local people.

We talked for a couple hours.  They asked all about us.  How we got here.  How we liked it.  Struggles we had.  Praises to share.  They were genuinely interested in knowing us.

As we went to dinner, they engaged my girls unlike any adults I have ever met, saying it helped their homesickness to get to talk to them and be with them. The girls were chatterboxes…giggling, sharing details about themselves that I didn’t even know!  They all told me at different times,

“I like them.”

Me too, girls.  Me too.  There was just something different about them.  When one of them prayed over our meal, my eyes filled up with tears.  Only one other person has ever had that effect on me with a dinner prayer (Jason Porter is his name).  My heart wanted to sit and listen to them talk, to seek wisdom from them because Father was evident in their every fiber.

As the evening came to an end, I felt blessed.  I felt encouraged.  I felt ready to face another day, and y’all.  My heart needed that.

Although, when they looked at us and said thank you for what you do, I felt unworthy.  I don’t deserve thanks.  I am just a sinner, trying to be obedient.

And I fail.  A lot.

The tears threatened again when we circled up to be prayed over.  We all went home with lighter hearts, feeling like we were better for having met these two men.   I went home fighting tears, wanting to sit in a corner, curled in on myself,  just thanking Him for the way He chooses to encourage us in this journey.  I’m not sure they will ever know how their kindness was a balm to my soul, but I know Who deserves all the praise for this meeting, and I praise Him fully!

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The Grandmas Strike Again!

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When Father led us to a church in Joshua, Texas that was completely outside of “normal” for us, we never expected to blessed the way we were.  We were adopted by some of the greatest prayer warriors I have ever met, and our hearts became entwined together with no way of ever separating them.

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Not only do I know that every. single. day. they are charging the throne room of the King on our behalves, I know that we can go to them with anything and their response will be encouragement and support.  They remember our birthdays and send emails exactly when we need them most.  I know it is no coincidence when their names pop up in my inbox, because He knows before I do what will be in my path that day.  They will forever be counted as family, and for that I will be forever grateful.

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They love to send us tangible expressions of their love as well.  And nothing says I love you quite like decaf tea, Downy sheets, and bikinis!  This may very well be the first bikini they have owned…and I am still undecided how I feel about it, but they LOVE it.  Faith and Ellie trade out every other day on who gets to wear it to the pool.  Ha!

The letters in the box, written in Shirley’s illegible scrawl, bring tears to my eyes.  Some words we have to guess on, but the meaning is crystal clear.  She loves us.  The feeling is mutual, my dear sweet friend.

shirley5One of these days, my prayers will be answered and these women will come for a partner visit, and What a day that will be!  

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