One of the times of laughter was on Wednesday. Every Wednesday morning I go to observe a class for my intro to teaching class. This particular Wednesday, my dad was having a young man in our acquaintance assist him at his job. The man had left his truck at our house and unintentionally blocked my car in the driveway. But that wasn't going to stop me. I just slammed on the gas and went backwards over this little hill, shattering some white pole sticking out of the ground in the process. I hope it wasn't too important. Anyway, I got out to make sure the car was alright, and didn't pay attention to what was behind me when I got back in. I mowed our trashcan down before I'd even realized that I hit it. So that was fun.
This weekend and into the next week, Mark, Luke, and Sara-Grace are visiting. My family and I had such a good time with them this morning as we visited Heritage Christian Fellowship, where my dad was guest preaching, and Mark was speaking on how his parents and siblings are serving as missionaries in Cameroon. This evening we had the Bible memorization meeting at the church and we were able to hear some of Mark, Luke, and Sara's songs. It was such a wonderful time of fellowship.
All throughout this week, I have been filled with such immense joy in the Lord. I have been struggling for several months now, ever since I got back from Glorieta, with having joy in the Lord. My biggest regret of my time in Glorieta was my lack of persistence in attending church, and not actively trying to engage in godly fellowship with those around me. I don't necessarily regret my decision in going to Glorieta. I had a fantastic summer of meeting new people and experiencing new challenges and blessings. But the damage to my faith was so great, I would never return to work there. I feel that I fell so far back in my faith over the summer, and I'm only just now beginning to gain some ground forward again.
God has been so patient and good to me. He is so kind. Honestly, His mercy and grace have just been consuming me over the past weeks, and I am overwhelmed.
At the memorization meeting tonight, Mark shared a passage from Isaiah that I was really encouraged by. For the discouraged, doubting believer:
Isaiah 43:1-7But now, thus says the LORD, your Creator, O Jacob, and He who formed you, O Israel, "Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine! When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they will not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, nor will the flame burn you. For I am the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior; I have given Egypt as your ransom, Cush and Seba in your place. Since you are precious in My sight, since you are honored and I love you, I will give other men in your place and other peoples in exchange for your life.
"Do not fear, for I am with you; I will bring your offspring from the east, and gather you from the west. I will say to the north, 'Give them up!' And to the south, 'Do not hold them back.' Bring My sons from afar and My daughters from the ends of the earth, everyone who is called by My name, and whom I have created for My glory, whom I have formed, even whom I have made."