Golden Celebrations

While most of you are reading this, we’ll be enjoying our very last anniversary party… This is the one that our kids have especially planned with no input at all from us. It’s a ….. wait for it …… a hot dog roast over a warm and wonderful winter bonfire!

Yes, you may be having the same reaction I had when they suggested it. This is on the heels of one of the most intricate and complicated, “Cecil B. DeMills productions party for at least 130 guests that we have just executed smoothly (Big thanks to everyone),  and now you’re asking us to have a hot dog on a stick?

But as we thought about it, we were reminded by them that this was the most fun activity the kids experienced growing up. Even in the middle of rain and sleet, smoke in the eyes and the pain of napalm-like flaming marshmallows in the face, these are the times they look back on with exquisite fondness, basking in the certainty that through it all, they were loved, that they were part of something bigger than themselves, and that at the end of the day, they were family.

Last week when I was writing about God’s Call and how it led to our marriage, it suddenly dawned on me again that this was and still is an all out miracle. There’s no other way to describe it.  God saw my tears, heard my prayer and reached over and put a Divine bug in Tony’s ear.

And then this week I was reading in 1 Corinthians 3:10-11, where Paul was talking to the church at Corinth. The whole “plan” thing hit me again.   My daughter’s father-in-law, Grant, preached about this several years ago and it has stayed with me.  Here’s the verse:

By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as a wise builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should build with care. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ.

You see, both Tony and I were raised by wise builders.  We got married, and then in the tradition of our parents, continued to build. Each day brought new revelations of God’s work and purpose, not only in our own lives, but in those of our kids as well.

Somewhere in the process as our kids camped through childhood and on into adulthood, they were led to soul mates of their own. We thank God every day that they were also raised by Godly and strong builders.

Then, in keeping with that “build it right” tradition, they have extended the project and are continuing the construction of an amazing heritage. The other day, Tony overheard our son Nathan responding to the question from a fellow police officer, “How do you keep your faith, with all the ugliness you have to put up with on the job?”

His answer was immediate and without doubt. He said, “I was raised by parents who taught us the importance of keeping God in first place. Whatever happens, I know that He is in charge, and there’s nothing anyone can do to take away the fact that I’m loved and accepted.”

My heart was warmed, not only by that comment, but to hear our daughter Nicki, as well as Nathan again, say almost the exact same thing last night at our party.

And as a further joy, at the party we had the pleasure of hearing from our pastor’s wife, Beverly Blake George. Rev. Norman Blake died just 10 years after he married us, but we never forgot him. Beverly has soldiered on these ensuing 50 years with little contact with us, but she hasn’t forgotten any minute detail and was able to come out to Australia to witness what she helped start.  She is such a blessing to this day!

And so with hearts full, we will continue from here to the next adventure.  I can eat again because yes, I proved last night that I could still fit into my wedding dress! Okay, maybe it wasn’t the WHOLE dress, but the veil fit perfectly, so I’m calling it.

Life is fun.  Have a wonderful week.  Next week the family will switch out of campfire mode and board ship for a four-day “starter cruise”, just along the east side of Australia.  The little boys are ecstatic with anticipation, as are we. Beverly is joining us to instruct us on how to be classy.

And as all kids on their honeymoon, you won’t be hearing from us next week ….giggle giggle.

August 18th we’ll be back. I’ll have the glitter out of my hair by then and maybe we’ll have some more news about Weaving Sunlight, our new book that’s coming out soon.

Until then, may your days be full of all the joy that God has for you. May each day mark yet another anniversary of the commitment you and He made to each other. And may we all look forward to our own “Golden Day” when we gather at His feet and begin a celebration to end all celebrations!

Marsha

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