It is Friday morning. Two of the three children are still asleep at 8:00....(I love breaks from school and the sleeping they do!) And, it's foggy and wintry looking, but a balmy 55 degrees outside!!! But, I am overcome with thoughts and emotions as I sit in my comfy bed with my laptop on lap, big giant cup of yummy coffee next to me, and Christmas is literally 4 days away!
Life is good.
But let me tell you of an amazing experience from Thursday evening where life is not so good for everyone......
Last night, our families within Children's Ministry at our church, had the opportunity to deliver "dreams" to the Dream Center here in our home town. Let me tell you what the Dream Center is first. This is a Christian facility for adults and families to live for free while they get their feet back on the ground. You see, there is no alcohol or drug addiction, they just need some help getting their feet grounded. They must have a job and go to work. As soon as they begin to make enough money and afford a place of their own, its time to move out and move on. It is truly a wonderful place for people to get the help they need, spiritually and emotionally. It is a temporary landing when they had no place to go. I LOVE IT!!
For 3 or 4 years now, our Children's Ministry families are given an opportunity to take a "dream" off our Dream Christmas tree at church. And, can I tell you when I first get this list of dreams from the center that I cry like a baby over it. There is a 23 yr old male at the center who asked for one item in particular......I thought, this is great, we can do this......and then he asked for a 2nd dream.......
A family that loves me.
Whoa! I took a deep breath and prayed right there for that boy. There is heartache in this world. There is sadness in the Dream Center. There is a desperate need for hope and love for these folks. Really, for any of us.
I could hardly get through our presentation last night of the "dreams" that we had bought, prayed over, and delivered to these families. The emotions were high in my heart and finally broke through as we sang "Silent Night" at the end.
Their dreams were very different than our dreams. They want families that love them. They want items for the center in which they live.....BASIC necessities that we just go out and buy at Walmart. They want easy, easy things. These are their dreams.
The joy from this event comes at the end of this process of picking a name off the tree, getting their dreams, wrapping the gifts, and then.........you get to actually SEE who you bought for and prayed for. To put names and faces together was awesome. We made dreams come true last night and the gratitude from their hearts and mouths was the most genuine thing I've seen in a long time.
Their faces were joyful. Their "thank you's" were straight from the heart. Their hugs were from deep within. Their dreams were met.
Thank you to all our church families who participated and who were able to come. We gave them hope. We gave them love. We came together as the body of Christ. I felt Jesus in that room last night. I was overjoyed and full of love.
I hope you have had those feelings of "Jesus in the room" and being overjoyed and full of love this Christmas season. If not, I pray your heart allows Him to do that beautiful thing that only Jesus can do........His presence can come at any moments asking. He is at His finest when He is present. Because, hearts and lives are changed forever whenever He shows up.
I love you, Jesus. I want to thank you for your birth. You were the greatest gift of all. I'm overwhelmed with gratitude.
Merry Christmas friends. I love all of you deeply. Thank you Leigh for praying.
Romans 15:13 was our scripture and it says this...."May the God of hope fill you with joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit."