I was singing to her the other day.
'Jesus loves the little children, all the children of the world, red and yellow, black and white, they are ...'
And she quietly interrupts with 'And purple.'
So I he-haw laugh and begin again. 'Jesus loves the little children, all the children of the world, red and yellow, black and white, and purple, they are precious in his sight, Jesus loves the little children of the world.'
We were blowing bubbles. 'Dear God....(in a tiny almost inaudible voice) thank you for bubbles.'
If you were to ask me, 'what is God teaching you right now'. Easy answer. Sin. What it is? Who suffers from it? And what does it look like.
And of course, he's showing me my own sin.
Real joy comes from knowing the depth of your sin and the extent of your idolatry. 'Those who cling to worthless idols forfeit the grace that could be theirs.' Jonah 2:8
I've heard it said that until you understand with your full being that you are actually truly capable of committing ANY sin, and until you realize that apart from Christ there is nothing naturally good in you, (read this carefully) then you will never know true joy.
Well. Here it is. The TRUTH.
Real joy is knowing how terribly bad I am, through and through, and then comparing it to the forgiveness of Jesus Christ. What He has done.
Jesus said it himself: Those who have been forgiven much, love much.
Their gratitude spills over and they find themselves tripping over their own feet, running to bow at HIS feet, crazy in love with God.
They find themselves loving others in an extravagant, unsurpassable way and forgiving unabashedly...from the heart. They. are. quick. to. forgive. others.
Does this describe you?
It's like the verse that we quote around our house a lot, not because we are getting it so right, but to remind us when we are wrong. 'Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.' Ephesians 4:32-5:2
Do you ever ask yourself...Am I a fragrant offering to God? What is my aroma in the nostrils of the most high God?
Brian and I sat over a date night dinner last week discussing sin. We got caught on the fact that some sins appear worse than others. Many sins destroy marriages, families and wreck homes. Some are secret and appear to destroy only the singular sinner. But all sin grieves God. Period. All sin separates us from him. All sin is detestable to him. Yet, 'all have sinned.' Romans 3:23
It's like one of my best friends Mom used to say to her, 'Sin takes you further than you want to go, keeps you for longer than you want to stay, and costs more than you want to pay.'
But the pathway right back to God is confession and repentance through a relationship with Jesus Christ. It's done. Finished.
God cannot give up on you. His love constrains him.
No matter how long it's been since you prayed. Or how long it's been since you whispered a prayer or listened for God's voice, the journey back to where you belong is one step away. 'Come trembling' to him like a dove and he will settle you in his home. Hosea 11:11
The next 4 pics were taken by my new little friend Madison, who is five, and seems to have an eye for photography.
Finger licking good. Waiting on their turn to add the special ingredients to their cookies.
Tie dyed cake in a jar! What? The girls loved it.
It's been on the summer bucket list for exactly 8 weeks. We've all wanted to do it many times this summer but had other plans in the afternoon and could never work it out. WELL. Today was the day. To say they were excited is the understatement of the century. It's 8:30pm and I still hear Vivian talking, not wanting to fall asleep. She didn't have a nap, so she's been in the bed since 5pm.
The girls either drank or spilt more than we sold. And ate their weight in popsicles.
I sent a few texts and boom. We had Customers. Super duper incredibly cute customers.
Our in house marketing and advertising executive went for the 'ol stand-in-a-pink-chair advertising scheme.
THE BEST PART.
It just so happened to be trash day.
Wish I got a better shot of it. I didn't have the zoom lens on. This guy paid for his lemonade with a million dollar smile. Should have given HIM a popsicle with that lemonade...we didn't think of that.
The ice is starting to look a little funny....
So all in all, we made 1 Million & $15 dollars today. All in a days work.
Oh, and we checked one more thing off the summer bucket list. Make a stranger feel loved and happy.