Sunday, July 08, 2007

Emmaus, Sometimes Somewhere

“At that moment, open-eyed, wide-eyed, they recognized Him.” Luke 24:31

The images from Joni & Friends Family Retreat camp always warm my heart and lift my spirits. Especially tender, are the pictures of parents with their children, looking with perfect and pure love into the heart of their child (and into the heart of the Father.) Love truly can pour over and overflow past the broken bodies or the illness or infirmities and that have visited their family.
To see love in such a tangible way, is like seeing my heavenly Father gazing at me from His Throne. Just as I am, broken, imperfect, falling, failing, whining and wishing things would be better or different, He just picks me up in a “grace” embrace and smiles.

One of my favorite little returning friends at camp came running up to me when she arrived, expressing her joy in a great big smile and hug, no words were required. We sat down on the couch and I told her “look deep into my eyes, I want you to recognize me when I show up as someone else.” (I have about 4 personalities at Family Retreat, not to mention the real girl too). We got nose to nose, laughed and she promised she would certainly know me when she saw me.

Moments like these offer a small peak behind the curtain of eternity, when we will see Him and recognize His beauty; how He has been here and there all along in the eyes of those we love, in the touch and talk of strangers that have made our day, encouraging us on our way – toward Home.

I can’t wait.

“We don’t yet see things clearly. We’re squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won’t be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright. We’ll see it all then, see it as clearly as God sees us, knowing Him directly, just as He knows us!” 1 Corinthians 13: 12

Participating in the Joni and Friends Family Retreat each year, gives me the opportunity hundreds of times a day, to look into His eyes.

Friday, July 06, 2007

Look in the Most Unlikely Place

Teresa Meeks found her calling as she painted faces of JOY on the campers!

"And therefore will the Lord wait, that He may be gracious unto you, and therefore He will be exalted, that He may have mercy upon you." Isaiah 30:18

Monday, July 02, 2007

Longing Souls

Oh, that we would have souls that praise God for all He accomplishes through our multitude of failures, shortcomings, brokenness and humanness!

The sound of cracking thunder woke me from a deep comfortable and familiar sleep at 5:00 in the morning. Since today would not need to have responsibilities pressing anytime soon, I prayed for safety for the arriving volunteers and retreated back to Hong Kong with "Speed Gibson & the International Secret Police" playing on my iPod.

As prayer covered our fears about the storms the volunteers would need to drive through, they began arriving close to the schedule, greeting each other like annual participants in a family reunion. Many are returning from years of faithfulness to the families who come here for their once a year respite and return to "heaven on earth".

We caught up with each others lives as much as time would allow, enjoyed the food, the pie and all the rest about Camp Allen that we only participate in while we sit at the top of this grassy hill, waiting for the floodgates of heaven to open and pour down the rain of mercy, grace, comfort and love on the families coming.

We can't imagine! What it will be like to see in the fullness of glory His healing.

"Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him." 1 Cor 2:9