We had a fantastic time on vacation – and thanks so much to those who prayed for our health. God answered your prayers – and kept the kids sick. This, however, ended up being the reason why we had such a refreshing experience.
We were in Florida to attend the The Navigators National Collegiate Conference. Every four years our organization hosts this conference to gather all of us who labor on college campuses in the US for a time of encouragement and teaching. Typically, Ben and I look forward to these conferences as a time to learn and connect with our fellow Nav staffers, and leaders we don’t see frequently.
Because the kids were sick this year, we couldn’t put them in the childcare offered at the conference, or get together with friends who had small kids, as we didn’t want to spread the joy of fevers and runny noses though out the conference. This forced us to evaluate what content each of us most wanted to attend, and only go to that, swapping being with the kids, back and forth. The kids and I alternated between lying low at the condo watching Animal Planet, and playing on the beach. We did very little else – and it was exactly what we all needed.
I could almost hear the collective “sigh” as each of laid our burdens down on the boardwalk and relaxed and played in the beautiful sand and waves.
God did two really special things for me on the trip. Seeing the kids enjoy a fun-filled, relaxing vacation filled me with joy. You know how I’ve struggled at times with all the upheaval and transition we’ve dragged the kids through over this last year. Despite the peace God’s given me in my soul that He loves them, that He will use these experiences to reveal Himself to them, it was wonderful to see God bless their socks off. I know each of them felt God had designed each day just for them and saw His caring and loving provision of sun and waves and free kayaks. They all had a sense God was saying, “Thanks kids! You’ve earned this great vacation. Enjoy yourself!” And they sure did.
God also allowed time to reconnect with a dear friend from our days in TN, Allison. We enjoyed a wonderful conversation after the kids were tucked in one night. I’m always so blessed when I get to see how God is moving and working even in the midst of hard stories. I feel really humbled to be friends with such compassionate and earnest people who God is using in such interesting ways.
God is using a verse a speaker shared at the conference to help me continue to remain relaxed and filled with the sense of peace and care I felt on those beaches.
It’s Psalm 9:10 – “And those who know they name will put their trust in Thee. For Thou, O Lord, hast not forsaken those who seek Thee.”
Sorry for the old Englishy version. I’m so used to NASB, I can’t switch. But isn’t that the truth though? I know God. I can trust God. He has not forsaken me. Amen.