Sunday, March 27, 2011
Things that move me.
I have a tendency to remember everything that people give us. Jason never ceases to be amazed at the fact that I can pull something out of our cabinets, out of my closet, or even a gift that Abigail had gotten and tell him who gave it to us and when. I just am so thankful for so many things that their origins stick in my head. Anyway, for that reason as people have been donating, the generosity of it all sticks in my head. It's not because of the amount people give so much, as knowing that it came from their heart. Whether it was anonymous, sending out e-mails to everyone, or making a donation, my head is logging all of the generosity and running out of words of thanks and gratitude because there has been so much. I haven't mentioned this for a while, but my husband and I live in the inner city and are part of a ministry here. The short of it is that a few families have intentionally relocated to living in a part of the city that is abandoned by most people with any sort of resources. We have taken ourselves from the outside saying we know how to fix 'their' problems to living here and saying these are OUR problems and issues as well. We have been part of this group for a little over six years now, and lived here for just a little under six years. We have gotten to know some amazing families, as well as kiddos. Some of the families we have gotten to know have moved away and we have never seen them again. It's one of the hardest things about living here is pouring into people and loving them just to have to start all over again. But every now and then there is a family that sticks it out and you get to see the amazing parents walk through life as well as the transformations of these awesome kiddos. In January of 2005 we had a pretty bad ice storm in Indiana. We were without electricity, and obviously it was pretty cold. Jason and I had just started to look at houses in the neighborhood we live in, but were still living in our first apartment. When the storm hit we drove in to soak up the warmth of friends who still had electricity and help if we could. This was when I met Miss Tasha and her kiddos. I don't know that she remembers it that vividly, but I do. She had three daughters and a son at home. And of course being a middle child her middle girly found a special place in my heart that she hasn't ever left. Lanaejah was seven that year. She turned 13 today and is growing up to be an exceptional young woman. She is beautiful, funny, and a talented singer. I see so much great stuff in that girl that I can't help but be proud for her and her mom. But this morning I felt both pride and humility as this young lady stepped up and gave from her heart. Lanaejah had a birthday party yesterday at a local park. She charged her friends to get into the party. And if you haven't been able to figure it out yet, she gave all the money to us for Abigail's surgery. It was a lot of money for a thirteen year old to just happily hand over without expecting anything in return. And so in a week as we hand checks over to the surgeon and hospital, and as we rejoice over our daughter being given this chance, I will only be able to picture this beautiful girl handing me an envelope full of money she raised. Thank you Lanaejah for being such a wonderful young lady. You are beautiful on the outside, but your heart is where your true beauty lies. I have loved watching you grow, and am grateful I get the opportunity to continue to watch you grow. God is doing amazing things through you! With all our love and gratitude,