I can already tell April is going to pass in a blur of activity. I have been extremely busy and am getting a crash course in balancing activity and rest. After a particularly long day, I fall into bed and don't wake up until after ten the next morning.
Our church did an Easter egg hunt thing for the community, served food, had bounce houses and games and face paining and lots and lots of candy. That was Saturday. On Sunday, I painted in front of the church during worship. There was a great, hope-filled message that was very encouraging.
This week my kids have been sick. Ella Grace, Justice and Owen have all been running fevers, and nearly everyone has a hacking cough. It's gone on a couple days now. All day today, I have laid in bed, cuddling sick tinies and watching movies. Today we have watched The Book of Life (wonderful!), Hotel Transylvania (funny!) and Night at the Museum 3 (which was great but also made me really sad, seeing Robin Williams.)
Tonight our small group is meeting and I don't think I will be going, with things such as they are here at home, and that bums me out a little because I miss it when we don't go.
Yesterday I finished Tortured for Christ, by Richard Wurmbrand. It wrecked me. I see stories all over the news about Christians being murdered for their faith or escaping to refuge camps where they struggle to survive, but somehow reading this account opened my eyes. I usually don't even read those kinds of stories because they're depressing or make me sad. How hardened and selfish I have become! The persecuted church needs practical help and I have largely ignored their needs as if there weren't real people, brothers and sisters in Christ, who are being beaten, tortured, starved and killed every day in hostile nations.
I mean to get involved in bringing Bibles and other Christian literature to hostile nations, to provide reliefs for prisoners and families of martyrs. www.persecution.com has some practical ways to get started.
Three of our children have birthdays this month, and it's a tight month financially. I've decided not to stress out about it. I will simply take my requests to God and trust that He will take care of us.
I've also reunited with some of the people I went to youth group with through Facebook. Surprisingly, many of them have abandoned the faith. This makes my heart break. I do mean to talk with them, starting out by just really listening to their stories. I understand the struggle because I nearly left the faith myself at one point, becoming hardened and embittered and angry at all the hypocrisy. My greatest hope is that God would grant them ears to hear and receive the love I have for them, and that they would not push me away. Love never fails.
Something simple for dinner tonight I think, like omelets or pancakes or maybe even pb&js. I purchased several of RW's books on my kindle for about a buck apiece. He writes with such love and compassion, with not a trace of bitterness or hatred despite all the horrors he suffered. I know I can glean so much from him. I hoping to snuggle under some soft blankets and get some reading done tonight.
My heart is burning.