Sunday, May 31


I work with kids. Partly because its my job and partly because I really enjoy it. Every Sunday morning I get to spend time with a group of 60+ kids and play games, talk about life and engage in some creative ways of learning more about God and experiencing Him as well. We have a very eclectic group of kids that attend; some are from the stereotypical christian middle class type of family, some are from families that look stereotypical but have a completely different reality behind closed doors, some are foster kids, some come every other week depending on if there at their Dad's or Mom's house and some come because we pick them up. One of these kids had particularly touched my heart and tried my patience every time she graces me with her presence.
Today was no different! My little friend [I won't use her name so we'll call her 'd'] often ends up sitting on my lap or trying to sneak out of the room or throw a fit... what ever can draw attention and a hug from the person of her choice. While this can be very trying, especially when you have 60 other kids to think about, I have to come to realize I learn a lot from my encounters 'd'. Today after going and getting her out of a game room and bringing her to re-join the group (which meant that she was sitting on my lap begging for a back scratch) I had to get up quickly to handle a minor computer issue. She, of course, followed my to the computer. Just then another little girl came up to me and asked "why does 'she' get to be special and sit with you all the time and come back to the computer and stuff? (apparently being allowed anywhere near an electrical appliance = awesome in a kids mind) I didn't know how to answer. Kids have this desire for everything to be fair but for them to always get their way. How does that work. If you get your way that means somebody else didn't get theirs so it's not really fair because its not fair for that person. Right?
I was torn because, in a way, 'd' is special, not in a "i love her more..." sort of way but she comes from a very different place. She is only about 8 or 9 yrs old, her mother passed away a couple of years ago while in labor. That is only a small part of the story but for privacy sake that is all that matters for now. I remember sitting in church with my mom when I was little. She would let me sit on her lap or snuggled up close beside her and she would scratch my back. My mom scratched my back a lot...any time I was sad, sick, tired, or just asked she would gently let her fingers glide across my back and I felt so safe and just like the rest of the world melted away and everything sounded muffled. 'd' has no one to do that for her anymore.
Tonight, as I was folding laundry I came across a show that I have never watched and don't even know the name of (Sally Feild was in it) but it was on one of those touching grown-up daughter-Mother scenes where the Mother was reading the dedication on the inside of her daughters new book... it was to her- Mom who taught her how to be strong, how to fight etc... I welled up with emotion and all I could think was "God, I miss my Mom!" I don't get to walk into the kitchen and tell her what I think or ask if she wants to go do something... my kids never got a chance to meet the woman who gave me life and then taught me so much of how to and not to live it.
There are so many Sunday's when 'd' walks up to me and simply says "I miss my mommy" and I just put my arms around her and tell her that I miss my mommy to and then we sit together and I scratch her back.

Wednesday, May 27

The Process

I have heard it said that God is a "one size fits all" kind of deal. I am not sure this statement is true. As I look at the people around me, hear them describe their life experiences, their troubles etc. I wonder why some people come to God and start 'hearing' Him speak to them right away, they have a deep sense of being with God, they are easily able to believe the Bible and see it working in their lives. They experience 'New-Testament' Christianity (not my term but I am at a loss for a better non-cheesy descriptive), they pray and people are healed on the spot, they speak words of truth and see lives change. Then there are the others. Those who truly believe in God and submit their lives to Him and yet they still always struggle, can't give up smoking right away, or their spouse still hates them. They pray and feel like they always hit a brick wall. Why do the majority of Christians I see and talk to you believe but lack experience of what God says that we can experience. I have heard many different answers to this question. Some have said that people, like the one's I am describing, must not actually have believed. If they really did believe they would experience. Isn't that the message we get in scripture? Others say that God deals with everyone differently and we can't all expect things to look the same or always work out. Then there is the Spiritual side, there could be soul ties or generational issues that are inhibiting the full-life. In reality it could be any number or all of the above then some. Still I wonder, why does it happen for some right away and others have to struggle. Part of it is our western culture I am sure, but I am at a loss for how things can be different. For how people can experience life in Christ with joy. I am not discounting the process! I realize that christianity is a relationship and all relationships are progressive. I just wonder why we all have such drastically different experiences when we come to Christ and I trust that God is big enough to know what each of us needs and align things so that it is possible while not forcing us to do anything. That is the blessing and the seemingly curse all at the same time.