Saturday, April 7, 2018

Holy Week 2018 ~ When Our Plan B Is God's Plan A

We have been celebrating Holy Week as a family since 2009.  Each year looks different.  Some years we have the time to do activities every day but then there are other years where we hardly get anything extra in.  But this year was surprisingly fun as we snuck in our family time in the midst of the Easter prep planning and rehearsals to really keep focused on what the season is all about.

We had our traditional Seder meal

We planted seeds, dyed eggs and had some special devotion times

And made Easter baskets for our neighbors.

What we were MOST excited about, though, was a big block party our MC was hosting on Good Friday in a neighborhood across the street.  We were teaming up with Exchange church again and were going to have lots of live music, bounce house, soccer playing (of course!) and pop corn.  Then the plan was to have a projector and screen set up in the field to show The Jesus Film in Spanish to the entire neighborhood!  We were STOKED!  We had several friends who could translate who were going to come and join us for the evening and be prepared to help us talk with people afterwards. We also ordered a Jesus Film DVD for each family to take home and keep as well.

But there was ONE thing standing in our way of this event actually taking place.


We'd been watching the forecast for weeks and rain was consistent on that day.  I began praying and praying that the Lord would hold the rain off, but every day when I checked the forecast the rain was imminent throughout the entire day. So Josh was already working out a plan B.

On Wednesday night I felt like the Lord was asking me to fast and pray the rain away for the next 24 hours.  I had been reading about the power of God over the weather in my quiet time and believed with all my heart that the Lord could move that storm away from our area that day if that was His will.  So that is what I did.  And wouldn't you know, every hour when I looked at the hourly forecast throughout Thursday (I know, I'm such a weather nerd!) the time that the rain would end kept moving up in the day until the final ending time was 10am.  To me that seemed completely doable!  I was SO excited!  That would give us plenty of time to set everything up and still have our awesome night.

God TOTALLY heard my prayer and MOVED THAT RAIN!
What a faith builder that was for me.  What may seem like such a simple thing for some was HUGE for my heart.

What I didn't take into consideration (although my smart hubby was already on top of it) was that the runoff for the rain in that neighborhood is sent directly to the main park/meeting area where we do all of our gatherings.  And it had already been wet and muddy from previous rains, so when Josh went to go assess the field after the rain on Friday morning it was a huge mess.  There was no way we could set up the sound and activities, much less expect those families to sit in puddles and mud to watch that movie.

So plan B was immediately put into effect.

We gathered our MC together at our home and assembled gift bags for every home in the neighborhood with the Jesus Film, popcorn, candy, an Easter service invite and a $5 Food Lion gift card.  Then we met Exchange Church and the translators at the park, divided up into teams and passed the bags out house by house.  There were so many connections made. Many prayers prayed. And gospel conversations were countless.  Afterwards everyone came back to our house for dinner and hung out into the night.

Yes, our plan had to change, but God's plan was way better!
AND what a cool thing He did for my faith.  I fasted in obedience, He answered in love.  Our plan still had to change, but the rain stayed away.

Friday, April 6, 2018

Story In Pictures ~ Track Out Memories

We had a super packed and fun track out.
So many friends came over to play.

Josh and I celebrated our 16th wedding anniversary.
We met Josh's parents half way so the kids could hang out with Meme and Poppie for a couple of days while Josh and I enjoyed a quiet house all to ourselves.

Well, there was a very needy dog who demanded lots of attention, lol.

We went to the circus 
and the kids were mesmerized!

And of course we had plenty of free time to create and imagine and just play!
This was one of Zeke's creations.
He made a cooking show set-up for Monster.

Pretty impressive if you ask me!

One of my favorite afternoons was letting the kids go through the art bin where I have been saving their favorite pieces over the past 3-4 years.  They LOVED reading their old stories and seeing how far they have come in their drawing and creating.

Friday Photos - Seasons and Forts

The last couple of months have brought every single season to us.
But that hasn't kept the Colony indoors!

I now realize where all of my outside chair cushions have disappeared to.

We did take a few short breaks for some reading though.

And just when we thought that the spring was here for good...
the snow came again
and AGAIN!

These kids will literally make a fort out of anything!

This blurry picture is so sweet to me!
I love how my oldest and youngest still play together.
And I love Jude's face as he looks and talks to his oldest sister.