Monday, December 22, 2008

No Place Like Home

Last night was one of the best nights I have experienced PERSONALLY in a long time. I have currently taken on a new job that I am sooo very new to. I am a children's ministry director. The papers say "minister", but I have to admit, I am not 100% comfortable with that. I think it is because I am soo NEW to this. This job is not something I went looking for or even planned on, but in another blog someday, I will tell you how God totally took this in his own hands. I had to obey and do as he wanted. Being a teacher for all my adult life, I am so very "elementary" at this job. But I am patient and know that God will teach me how to implement His plan!

Last night, I had the opportunity to take several families from the children's ministry to a local nursing home. This nursing home is very dear to me. First of all, I grew up in the church that founded this nursery home and was and still is attached to the facility. During my youth I spent many of days going to visit these people and have great memories of taking residents to and from church every Sunday. This place is my HOME church! Where I learned about God's love for me!

Anyhow, the families met in the dining hall and we passed out cookies, visited, played Bible Bingo, and sang Christmas carols. It was alot of fun! But much to my suprise, I met up with residents that I once new as elders or members of my HOME church from my childhood. It was soo good to see these sweet people that were once so dear to me and a part of my life, but it was also a bit sad. The loneliness is a reality to some of these folks. Life is SHORT! Very short! The night was much more a blessing to me than to them, I am sure of it!

After that we met at the church and went Christmas caroling. It was 20 something degrees, and to be honest with you, I was NOT looking forward to it. But, it was amazing to be with a group of believers, in the freezing cold, with my children, singing songs to complete strangers. As we stood on the outside of the dark houses, I couldn't help but wonder "What is happening right now in there?" "Were they suffereing" "Were they happy?" "Where they scared?" Every house and every family had it's own story! That I am sure of! But what I loved so very much for that moment was the story of my own house! I have so much to be thankful for!

We may not have much when you look at us on the outside. Small house, 3 children, 2 dogs, 2 cats, two old vehicles, nothing that special. BUT IT IS SPECIAL! My house is full of love, laughter, peace, and joy. We have warm beds and warm clothes. We have food in the pantry and the frig. We have clean water. And we have each other. And most importantly God is with us in our house!

Tonight, amazingly enough, my house is clean. It won't be tomorrow! Not with 3 kids, 2 dogs, and family arriving. But that is okay. I look around it right now and I am so thankful! God is soo good! So very good! There is no place like home.........


Kathy said...

If you will simply carry with you the love and assurance of God's love that came through this particular post to the children that you are ministering to it's gonna be just fine! In you is the solid foundation of Jesus Christ and you stand on that foundation every time you fulfill the role He has given you. It sounds like you had a profound night with the "olders", and I'll pray for this new wonderful thing the Lord is doing for, to, and through you!!!

Gina Stinson said...

Mandy...just wanted you to know I went back up to the nursing home and delivered something to the lady Savannah bonded with Sunday night. We had another good visit and she invited us to come to her room and be her guests again. It was sweet.

Married with Children..... said...

Oh I love that! Thanks for following up with her. I know that means so much to that sweet lady! I am so glad Savannah was able to experience this. I have us down for another visit in February!