Sunday, April 29, 2012

Life and death

This week has been a full week - a wonderful, fun, and amazing week in many ways- but FULL! I spent the earlier part of the week at Silver Bay on Lake George with my family and some great friends. Then we had Compelled. Then I was off to the Ladies retreat this weekend. I went early so I could spend some extra time with my sisters, who were coming to hang out with me! The retreat was great, the speakers amazing, and I made a few new friends - that is always a good thing. In the middle of my chaos-as-usual life, I watched as life and death played out in the lives of people I care about. A family that I have known for a long time and adore lost a husband/father suddenly on Sunday. It was very unexpected, and even as they came to the retreat this weekend (they needed to be with people that loved them and hear God's word) I was amazed at how God's love played out for them through his people. As I sang "You give and take away, but my heart will choose to say, blessed be the name of the Lord" I could only think of them sitting a few tables behind me singing it in a way that was raw and very real. At Compelled last week we watched a young man get baptized and publicly begin his walk with Jesus. He had come from the past few years of living in his own ways and came to realize that God's love for him was no gamble. It is always an emotional things for me to see these steps of faith in people's lives. Then last Monday another friend welcomed a little boy into their family. We rejoice with them in his healthy birth and new life! Then on Thursday I got the news that a man we went to Nyack with (and whose sisters are friends of ours - one of whom was supposed to speak at the retreat) had a massive heart attack and died suddenly. No warning - a seemingly healthy 40 year old man in the service. In Japan. God's ways are not mine and I don't understand them...but I do believe He is good all the time. On Friday we got news that another friend had baby boy to add their family of girls! There was much rejoicing, and seeing daddy's proud face holding his new son was priceless. That same day, we found out another friend's grandmother died. We had met her a few times and had been praying for her to understand the salvation message as it was presented to her quite a few times recently. Life. And death. And life again. It's that never-ending circle. It makes me glad that I can say I can trust in the Lord with all my heart and lean not on my own understanding. In all ways I will acknowledge him and he will make the path straight. I am thankful for this in a week of emotional ups and downs.

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