Welcome to a new edition of Weekend Gratitude! I don't know how long I'll keep this little series going, but it suits me well enough for now. If you would like to read the other posts, click here: Weekend Gratitude.
I loved the worship service at Lake Baldwin Church, as always. It's a mix of contemporary worship songs and hymns. This morning, we sang "O Worship the King" which was our wedding hymn. (First verse: "O worship the King, all glorious above, O gratefully sing His power and His love; Our Shield and Defender, the Ancient of Days, Pavilioned in splendor, and girded with praise.") My husband and I nudged each other and smiled. Another was "God Moves." This is the modern version of the old hymn by William Cowper, who suffered from depression; it's a very encouraging song for those who wonder why life is going the way it is. (First verse: "God moves in a mysterious way / His wonders to perform / He plants His footsteps in the sea / And rides upon the storm / Deep in His dark and hidden mines / With never-failing skill / He fashions all His bright designs / And works His sovereign will / So God we trust in You / O God we trust in You.")
Dave Abney preached the second sermon on Jonah and quoted a bit from the old poem "Hound of Heaven" by Francis Thompson as a reminder of how God pursues us even when we turn away from him.
I fled Him, down the nights and down the days;(This reminds me of my own poem, Corpus Christi, which uses the phrase "Hound of Heaven" about midway through: "He traverses the land, announcing the Kingdom of God-With-Us / Among those who do not yet recognize his benevolent dominion / He goes to those who will not come on their own, in mercy / Chases those who run headlong toward the brink of destruction: Hound of Heaven")
I fled Him, down the arches of the years;
I fled Him, down the labyrinthine ways
Of my own mind; and in the mist of tears
I hid from Him, and under running laughter.
Up vistaed hopes I sped;
And shot, precipitated,
Adown Titanic glooms of chasmèd fears,
From those strong Feet that followed, followed after.
But with unhurrying chase,
And unperturbéd pace,
Deliberate speed, majestic instancy,
They beat—and a Voice beat
More instant than the Feet—
“All things betray thee, who betrayest Me.”
We are in the process of becoming members of Lake Baldwin. We took the membership class last month and needed an interview with an elder before officially joining. Fortunately, Bart happens to be an elder, so we stayed after the lunch and did this in the comfort of their living room. By the time we left their house, the kids were so stuffed with good food that none of them seemed terribly interested in the hot dogs and birthday cake I fixed for Ben's birthday dinner!
Tomorrow we're planning to go to the Orlando Science Center to see the new "Jane Goodall's Wild Chimpanzees" IMAX movie and the new Curious George hands-on exhibit. (We were going to go on Saturday, but our day became a little too chaotic. Did I mention that I somehow missed a library due date and had to quickly round up 25 books and pay almost a $10 fine? Ouch! Next time, I need to put the due date on the kitchen calendar and in my iPod calendar rather than just waiting for the "books due" e-mail from the library. Oh well, live and learn.) On Saturday morning, while I was doing home school lesson planning for next week, I twiddled with our school schedule so we can spend more time on the kids' independent math and writing assignments, even if it means cutting back a bit on history and literature.
Tomorrow is Valentine's Day, so after the kids go to bed, I need to sneak candy into the little pockets on our big red felt heart that we just mounted on the dining room wall. Naomi has already put a heart-shaped box of chocolate's in the pocket labeled Mom & Dad.
All in all, despite the library fines and mounds of laundry still waiting to be folded, it's been another great weekend, and I'm grateful.
How was your weekend?
P.S. Tim Keller, author of Generous Justice and minister at Redeemer Presbyterian in New York City, is speaking at Orangewood Presbyterian in Maitland, Florida, at 7 PM on February 22.
P.P.S Enjoy Micah's pictures!