In the last week, I've been up, down, experienced God's providence in an immediate and undeniable way, been thankful for multiple blessings, have had caused to celebrate more than once, and have had reason to fall to my knees in prayer.
During that time, I haven't written much, other than facebook status updates and a few words here and there in my (gasp) handwritten journal.
There was one afternoon, where we drove five hours from Whistler to Seattle, when I could have written, and I did journal a little, but I journaled about God's provision of rest and amazing grace. Every moment of that drive felt like a gift to me from God, and my husband who did all the driving, and my kids who were happily reading and taking a few turns on their DS. Viewing majestic beauty in a variety of forms felt like a gift. Mountains, sea-scapes, cityscapes, people, farmland, sun-bright beauty, all rolled into one wonderful, and restful view for me.
My daughters' dance competition and convention over the weekend went wonderfully. They received a gold for their tap dance, and a high silver for their large company dance. Other dancers from our studio also did very well, with the best duo getting four awards for their tap number including 1st overall and Judge's choice.
On Sunday morning, when I was packing up our hotel room and the girls and my husband were walking to the convention, I felt a keen pang and a longing for worship at my church. Just moments after that thought went through my mind, with a half mumbled prayer, God provided. Immediately a sidewalk preacher outside the inexpensive hotel where we stayed, started preaching God's word with a voice that carried all the way up five stories and into my window. I never saw his face, but his words were straight from God's word. He touched my heart with his message of salvation and his joy at inviting others to become a new creation in Christ.
My daughters had a wonderful time at their convention, my spiritual needs were filled by God's providence, we had a great time skiing at Whistler (out of order), and my husband and I even had time to spend together over breakfast one morning and had a great conversation. In addition to that, we also got to take a Parent Hip Hop class and jump around on the stage at the dance convention in the attempt to embarass our kids. Their response, "You did better than we thought you would." Hmmm.
In addition to all of those experiences I received an invitation to have my poem, "Grace Unexpected," published in a print anthology.
So I had many reasons to celebrate this last week, and many rich experiences to enjoy, but we also have had sorrow, and worry going on at the same time.
Currently, my husband's oldest sister's husband is in the ICU with internal bleeding and pneumomia. He already has severe MS, and has weathered through many storms in his life with an amazing faith in God that puts me in awe. My sister-in-law's ability to work full time and care for all his needs is also awe-inspiring. She also happens to be one of the worship leaders at her church. He has led Bible studies. They deserve so much, and yet they are in the midst of a life-threatening storm. I pray that God calms the wind and the waves soon, and gives them strength, comfort and His peace that passes all understanding. Please join me in praying for them.