I am so glad I can say that my God loves me. He gave me a small answer to prayer today which helped encourage me in a big way. It was a simple prayer, but nothing is too small for the Lord. I always knew that, but sometimes we just need to be reminded that all we need to do is believe that He will, not just that He can.
I grew up in a Christian home, where we lived by faith in more ways than I can possibly share on here. As a child I believed God in a far deeper way than I do as an adult and I miss the sweetness and innocence I once had. I always knew God would answer my prayers when I prayed them and He always did. He took His time sometimes, but I always got an answer. I had many tough times during my teen years, where I struggled with doubt that God was not always there, but He always sent His peace down on me when I cried out for Him to comfort me and make Himself real to me. I crave to have that simple way of believing in Him once again.
We had some amazing meetings this week with Bro Tom Williams. He gave some thought provoking messages about "How Bad Do You Want It" and another one about believing God will, not just that God can. I had heard it all before, many years ago, but to be reminded that God has not changed, nor will He ever change, brought tears to my eyes. I can go to Him and ask Him for something and He will answer according to His Word. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. What He said He will do for me thirty years ago still stands to this day. I was so encouraged by his last message that I am going to ask Joe if we can put it up here so you can hear it and be blessed too.
Another thing that has been in my thoughts is the fact that John, the disciple of Jesus, was one of the closest ones to our Lord. He always called himself 'the one whom Jesus loved' and I have been thinking a lot about this idea. What exactly made Him the closest disciple? Did Jesus play favorites and choose John to be his best friend? I was thinking about this and have been reading the book of John so I can get a deeper glimpse of John's perspective of Jesus. A statement Pastor made once rings in my head - "You are as close to the Lord as you choose to be." John must have wanted to be as close to Jesus as he possibly could. Maybe the other disciples did not choose to be as near to Jesus, but their decisions were not going to affect John's choices. He was going to do everything he could to stay by Jesus side and hear every word that He had to say during meals, walking along the road, and even in the quiet times of prayer. He hung on to everything Jesus shared and his simple ways were used to write the four books with his name on it in the New Testament. I am so glad Jesus does not give up on me. I am so glad He is always the same and I can trust in Him just as I did as little girl. Childlike faith is what I need to have. Thank you, Lord, for reminding me that You are always faithful and always will be.
My class this year is completely different than the one I had last year. First off, I do not have my own little Ben in the same room with me anymore and I miss him. :( He is now in the first grade next door to me, and I am very happy that I get to see him throughout the day as we have lunch together, as well as art and recess. His teacher is wonderful though, and she has worked out a little deal with him that when he is finished his work or feels sad, he does this winking thing with his eye (kind of looks like he has something in his eye when he does it!:) and she lets him pop into my room to give me a hug, or two, or three. It makes for a very pleasant, mommy-building moment for me. It is nice to know he still needs me.
Another thing that is different with my class is how little the all seem to me. Yes, I know they were little last year too, but I am referring to maturity levels, not height. The first week of school had me scratching my head because I could not figure out why they did not know all this stuff, but then I had to remember that I am coming out of an entire year of teaching my old class and they started out at this very point too. I have to be careful not to compare the ones just starting out with the ones that finished last June. There are steps I have to take as a teacher to prepare these six children to get to that same point the others were at the end of the year. It is a process, and some always take longer than others to get there, but I need to rewiA graduate kindergarten and enter first grade.
Their personalities are completely different too. I have some funny little people in my class, as I did last year, but there are a few that make me laugh with their silly, and sometimes brilliant, replies. One small guy is quite brilliant in all that he says. He has a remarkable memory for what his parents have taught him, and even knows what those cloud lines behind airplanes in the sky are called! He will often blurt out some fact or random statement that blows me away. I love giving him his Bible tests because he knows his Bible stories so well and comes out with answers that are beyond his years.
It has been a crazy week though. Last week was a four day week, so this week seemed extra long. Thursday felt like it should have been Friday and I was ready for the weekend to arrive. It all started last Sunday, even before the craziness began. I was cleaning up after lunch on Sunday and put all my clean Tupperware away in the cupboard. Later on that night I was looking for some leftover meat from Saturday's dinner, but could not find it anywhere. I figured maybe someone else had eaten it or I had accidently thrown it away. I forgot about it and went about my week until Thursday when I was looking for something to put my lunch in for the next day. I pulled out a rather heavy storage container and to my surprise, found that leftover meat I had been looking for a few days before. It was completely green and fuzzy. a, and turned my stomach in a bad way. Yet, I began laughing until the tears rolled down my face. somehow it had become mixed up in the clean containers and been neatly put away in the cupboard. The smell was horrendous and I had no idea what to do with the decomposing meat pile. It would have made for a good experiment if someone had had the stomach to work with it, but we ended up tossing it outside in the woods. Maybe some vultures will find it and enjoy a nice meal. I could not believe I had done that! What was I thinking! My brain has been completely unlike its normal self lately and I am finding, much to my dismay, that my memory is not as good as it once was. Between working all day at school, then coming home to be a wife, mom, and housekeeper, plus an office manager at Family Pest Control two-three nights a week, well, there are days when I wish my children were small again and I could sit on the floor and just play matchbox cars with them again. Don't get me wrong though...I love my children and where they are now. They are maturing, growing taller than me, becoming wonderful young men and women, as well as growing in the Lord and trying to understand the Bible and settle issues in their own hearts. I love how my oldest is doing his best in working to have a good attitude each day at school. He is making friends and is coming out of his shell. He only has two more years after this and then he will be college age. That is a scary thought. It just goes to show that as he grows up, I am growing up too. Even with my tired body, crazy-fuzzy brain, and busy life, I love where God has me right now and all that He is teaching me. We are never too old to learn. I would not trade my spot right now and go back to where I was before. I am a woman, growing in grace and maturity, and I desperately cling to my God as my anchor and stronghold. Without Him I would be nothing.
Below are a few pictures of what my classroom looks like now. As you can see my theme is the ocean - fish are everywhere and the children love my hut Joe made for them. :) I could put a picture of the old meat on here, but figured it was enough to tell you about and let your imagination do its own work. Oh, and one of these days I will have to share the story of the apple core, but that is for another day. )Have a great weekend!