On May 4th, there was a fire in our neighborhood and it was b/c of that fire that we met Alessia and her two daughters, Adreanna and Angelina. They came in our home that night and lived with us for a week and a half as they got things back in order....or should i say, God provided things in order above and beyond any of our expectations.
There are many details, but what happened in short is that God had been pursuing Alessia since she was born in Germany 23 years ago. As she shared her life with us, i noticed this. As we shared our life with her, God began to fit the pieces together for all of us. Alessia believed their was a God...but had no idea about the good news the Bible spoke of. We and many others shared this good news with her and on Mother's day, May 10th, God called her to Himself and she was saved b/c of the great work of Jesus! a Glorious day for so many of us...and the next Tuesday we baptized her in our yard! see post below.
Alessia is in her own apartment now and they have become a regular part of our family.
One thing I wanted to post about is what has happened with our children in the midst of this. Two little girls have quickly become like our "nieces" and become our children's "cousins". The kids were away from them for an extended time as we traveled to Memphis last week and missed the girls. We have an endless supply of girls clothes, shoes and toys as sally and the girls constantly swap them back and forth with each new visit. We have new kinds of foods in our home especially for when angelina and adreanna visit. Everything we do now, almost always includes them and Alessia on some level. They have truly become like "family" to us. And we love them like our own!
So what is the blessing of Interruption? Specifically for my children, it has been a good sharpening for "edges" that I was not aware existed before. In an instant, they went from having their own to sharing everything. They experienced people dropping by everyday for a week to give angelina and adreanna toys, or clothes and experienced someone else receiving and them observing. They experienced giving as we would go to the store and get things they needed for that day....they experienced sharing everything they owned...from toys, to clothes, to home, to cups and plates...foods and drinks....in an instant their world was interrupted.
I have to say that I have never been more proud of my children than in that first week and a half as we shared our home with Alessia and the girls. The Interruption was a blessing b/c it gave an opportunity in an instant for my children to apply anything they had been learning....and they had to apply it all times....not just for a brief visit.
For WesleyGrant, I saw him really step up and be a leader. I guess he liked being the only boy and he told me one day, "Mama, I am going to obey you, because i love you"...miracle! =) And we would watch him several times, instruct the girls on what to say and how to act. We would see him get all the girls to sit down and he would tell them a story. It has been amazing to see him in this process. Angelina and Adreanna got a leapfrog game that he has been wanting for a long time. It was a wonderful thing to watch him wrestle with that and enjoy the game when they shared with him, rather than to expect that he had to own one himself.
Karis is walking now, b/c she has had to keep up with 4 other kids! It has been neat to watch her laugh and clap and walk and play with the kids. She has been her normal joy and "go with the flow" self.
Sally has blossomed into a girlier girl...if that is possible!...as she has met angelina and adreanna who are the girliest girls ever! They love to dance and play with babydolls all the time. The two older girls are so good at make-believe and have taught sally how to do that as well. Sally has also had difficulty with finding her "place" a midst all the children. I have watched her act out this frustration with temper tantrums and manipulation. She has cried more about being with me than ever before. So is this interruption in her life still a blessing?? of course! I would have never known those places in her heart before. It has brought me to a new attentive training for her. It is hard to see her unsure at times...but all of the negative behavior is not a place for me to react...but a new opportunity to train and assure her of our love and her place. It has been great "soil" for the gospel in her life.
I have often found myself, as we think of things in this life for our kids, pursuing all the easy, comfortable and "pretty" things. But God is teaching me that sometimes that could produce the deepest soars for my kids. It is the things we don't expect in life that can bring the most education, training and opportunities for the gospel to play out in our heart and for our children. I am learning to trust Him more as life happens out of my own control. And realizing I do not even know enough to protect, provide and pursue my children....But God does and He will always. I can trust Him for that always. We are learning to thank God for his interruptions and counting them as blessings!