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Saturday, August 13, 2011

I Saw God Today

If anyone serves Me, he must follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also; if anyone serves Me, the Father will honor him. John 12:26

"Mommy, what does Jesus look like?" Another deep theological "stump mommy" question had come out of my 4 year old's mouth. Shoot! Uh...quick, think of something...why is my brain so it, "I think He has long hair like Noah!" Laughter came from the back seat and my little ones moved on to a new topic of conversation. Phew! Today, as I played a game of Duck Duck Goose, I recalled that particular conversation...

Ricky and I decided to spend the morning along with our kids serving at "Adopt-a- Block." This is a ministry of our church run by a young woman named Alix. She and others had a vision to show love in its purest form to those who need it most. They do this by "adopting" a neighborhood in the poorest parts of town, going there weekly, picking up trash, playing with the kids, and interacting with the families. This is not a "hand-out" ministry, but rather a ministry of love demonstrated through quality time, service, and relationship building. This week, however, was an exception to the rule. Alix realized that too many kids from the blocks were having to start school with no school supplies. She and her team organized a backpack drive and collected backpacks to take to the children. Ricky and I thought that this would be a good way to show our kids in a very tangible way what it means to serve Jesus, love others, and help those in need.

I must have been quite a sight as I herded my brood through the block with a trash bag in hand, wearing a 4 month old, and directing my 3 and 4 year olds to pick up trash with their over sized gloves. I kept trying to explain to them that we were serving Jesus by making the neighborhood clean for the people that lived there. Although, they looked at me like I was crazy, I kept right on encouraging them with this explanation! Once the door-to-door teams got all the kids to come out to the street, we sang songs with the kids and did a short devotion on prayer. As I was standing there sweating like a pig in the hot sun while doing my best to shade my 4 month old and trying to keep my hot 3 year old from throwing a tantrum, I kept feeling the presence of Jesus in that place. I felt like if Jesus was here on this earth, right now, He would be right there with all those kids, teaching them hand motions to a silly song, and praying over them. In that moment, the fact that I was drenched with sweat, that my 4 month old was getting sunburned, that my 3 year old had taken off her shoes with glass all around and was on the verge of a tantrum didn't matter. All that mattered was that Jesus was in that place and I was there too.
We split into groups after the song time and played Duck Duck Goose. My heart broke as I watched the boys gravitate toward Ricky. These kids have such a lack of male role models in their lives and I could see it in spending just a few moments with them. As soon as Ricky joined the game, all the boys wanted him to chase them, play with his hat, and get a ride on his shoulders.
At the end of our time with these precious ones, we stood in line with them to get backpacks and had the privilege of watching their eyes light up as they opened their new prized possession. I could not help but giggle, as I watched the boys walk around with their heads held high and their chests puffed out proudly showing off their new backpacks to each other. And my heart delighted in seeing the little girls' faces brighten with huge smiles when they discovered markers and glitter pens in their bags.

I saw God today. He was on a block in Corona with a bunch of poor kids and ordinary people who were picking up trash and giving out backpacks. And though I can't describe His physical features, I do know that He was beautiful.

1 comment:

Jacque @ Mercy Found Me said...

Beautiful! Praying that they feel the love of Christ as they wear those backpacks, and I'm giving thanks for all of your servant hearts, who today were the hands and feet of Jesus! Just awesome!