Thursday, October 27, 2011

‘Your love is extravagant,
Your friendship, it is intimate
I find I’m moving to the
   rhythms of your grace
Your fragrance is intoxicating
   in our secret place’

We sang those lines over and over last night as our spontaneous worship session took us deeper into God’s presence. It was a sweet time of fellowship with some dear brothers and sisters in Christ-some truly stellar individuals who ‘could sing of His love forever,’ and do. Our precious time praising our Jesus was wrapped up gently, properly, with Kevan, Connie and Hayden praying and thanking God for surrounding us with His spirit, and for His stirring in our hearts a yearning for the coming day when we can experience the most precious worship time there will ever be! His peace stilled our hearts and souls, and the reminders throughout each song of His love thrilled and comforted us until we just couldn’t help but sing praise to His glorious name!
There was a line in one song, which sadly doesn’t come to mind now, that just formed in my mind this progressive vision. I saw what I imagine it must have looked like when Paul gathered with one of his planted churches for a time of fellowship. And then I remembered back to this summer, in Africa, when the Amani volunteers gathered for a sweet time of worship with the Mamas and a visiting team. From there, the image of a youth group worship night from 6 years ago (a defining moment for me…the night I decided I was actually going to live the life Jesus wanted, not just claim His name), with the songs that aren’t on mainstream radio, but to this day remain in my heart and are more highly favored in my mind than most popular worship songs. Last Saturday, when we visited a local church for their evening service, and the awkwardness of being in a new place alongside complete strangers just melted when we began to sing familiar praises. And last night, with my fellow travelers for this time of my life, the free worship that brought tears to our eyes. In each of these blessed times, the key factor was not the songs, or the time, or the length, or even the people I was with (although the Connie/Kevan duo is pretty essential, in my opinion…just saying). No, the magic of each encounter with our great and mighty God is simply…
 Him.

Monday, October 10, 2011

*hearts*

Today I've been missing my African loves intensely, so I thought it high time you get an overload of photos. They say more than I could ever try to about these amazing women and children I was so blessed to live with for 2 months.

Mama Santa...I miss her joy and her sense of humor


Mama Night...I miss her indestructable smile


Mama Claire...I miss her sweet, gentle spirit


I really miss Mama Santa <3 


Mama Catherine...a woman of superior strength and character. Mama Catherine totally trumps Mother Theresa, any day!


Auntie 'Emmy'....I miss that girl!!!! 


Auntie Amy!! and the favorite child. <3 


And I miss this little boy...


And I especially miss this little guy :(


I miss this dynamic duo <3


And these two beautiful girls


And this sweet little guy

MONOPOLY!!!!!!


These boys...oh how they made me stop and think...and then smile...and love Jesus


And this girl!!! and her sister....I want them for my sisters <3


And I miss this face...


<3


<3


Mama Grace...I miss her crazy, fun lovingness


Mama Lucy...MY Mama...her sense of humor, her love, her laughter...nkwagala nyo Mama Lucy!!!!


Oh these two <3


And this little girl....


And I'd probably better stop before I drive someone crazy with all the pictures. These and many more African beauties are forever in my heart...and I miss them like crazy. Please pray with me about when I can go back, because being away from them is super hard. <3