My son is home; his week in Jamaica unfolding in bits and pieces since we met him late Saturday night at the airport. Far more comfortable in sharing some of the details with us than he was last year, he relates some of the experiences and lessons. Since he is still a sixteen year old boy and very concerned with matching if not surpassing his father's machismo, I am left to wonder just how deeply the lessons run within his heart. Nevertheless, I am thankful his heart stood ready to give and thus receive - even if I never know exactly the good God delivered.
Good came in the form of Aubrey bouncing into the house with two new pairs of "flippies", my favorite flip flops. She and Taylor had bought several pairs before leaving for college three years ago. She had stashed them away in her closet and surprised me with them this afternoon. Good followed Brynn and Mackie in the door today. Though tired from their service in Belize, their weary eyes brightened as we talked. Josie surprised us today by bringing good with her, Chloe, Taylor's big sister in Theta. We enjoyed a fabulous lunch. The girls took turns badgering Wade about girls and school and college plans, taking a sincere interest in his answers and their role in keeping him humble. I love that they just walk in the house like they are home; my heart leaps when I hear the door screech and Joey's resounding, "Hey girl!"
Good came in an early morning text from Colson relaying the impact Tay's passion still has. It came in the form of a Facebook message from Micki; she has one of the mugs Madison made, and she prays for my boys and I while she had her coffee. Good allowed us to share four hours with family this morning watching Addie play soccer and enjoying the simple friendship between cousins. I hope you get to watch your children love others; I hope you study them in the act and allow the memory to etch family along the walls of your heart. Even in the happiest days to come, you will be able to run your fingers along the imprint and remember. If the saddest days come, you can crawl inside the space created by the indention and rest.
Good came yesterday when Aldyn brought Jonathan over. Her confidence and comfort in his presence are an answer to prayer. Carlie began this waterfall of goodness with her visit, filling our living room with stories and plans early Saturday afternoon. Good surrounds us.
We don't understand why God didn't save our girl, and sometimes we are still angry with him. I write this with intention to illustrate the contrast. Even when we are sad and angry, God continues to provide good. That's the purpose of this space - to name the good.
Mission trips are good - when they take hearts that serve others to Jamaica or Belize - or to an empty house in Broken Arrow. Mission trips are good.