Last weekend was Thanksgiving and I have so much for which to be thankful. We spent a beautiful weekend up at Jason's parent's cottage surrounded by extended family. The colours on the trees were amazing and to top it off the weather was absolutely gorgeous. We took our student Soo Gyeong Shin with us and she was very brave to try all sorts of new things, like canoeing, maple fudge, hanging out around the campfire and of course making s'mores. This was her first Canadian Thanksgiving and I think it was a big hit!
|Soo Gyeong's first canoe ride|
|Last campfire of the season|
One of my favourite moments of the weekend was when Jason and I took Soo Gyeong out onto the beach at night to look at the stars. She was mesmerized. She told us that in the city where she lives in South Korea that there is too much smog and too many lights to see any stars so she had never really seen them before. She was enchanted by the night sky. Her enthusiasm and child-like delight was contagious and I found myself being pulled into her joyful reaction.
Afterwards, I was reflecting about how great and indescribable God really is. How the Creator of all of those amazing beautiful stars is even more amazing because He sent His one and only Son as an atonement for the debt that I myself can never pay. My heart was overwhelmed with thankfulness for that amazing sacrifice but also for all of those who He has placed in my life.
This past week in our family devotions we have been reading in Mark. We were studying the passage in which Jesus' mother and brothers come looking for him.
Answering them, He said, “Who are My mother and My brothers?” Looking about at those who were sitting around Him, He said, “Behold My mother and My brothers! For whoever does the will of God, he is My brother and sister and mother.”
~ Mark 3:33-35
Over the past few years, this scripture passage has been revealed to my heart. I have always loved my family as I am sure Jesus did too but there is something special about the family that God gives us. There are those of you that have become that for me. Some of you I have known for years and some of you I have met only once or twice but we have stayed in touch. We have served together in church, at camp, in home church, mission trips and in other Kingdom projects. The gifts and talents that God has blessed you with have inspired me. We have laughed together, cried together, played together and studied God's word together. You are my bothers and sisters. You are a part of our family.
Many of you have prayed for us. Some of you I have never met in person but I know you are praying. We have seen God do amazing things in answer to those prayers. When Liam was sick in the hospital we would watch his monitors all return to normal readings when we would remind him of who had signed up to pray for him during that specific time. It was such a miracle that even the nurses began to notice. We have felt your prayer lately here in Hamilton. God has been confirming to us that we are exactly where He wants us to be. Some of you have taken on the responsibility to pray for streets in our neighbourhood and even our own street. We are seeing Him at work. (Watch Jason's update post on Tuesday for some exciting news) Your faithfulness to pray is an encouragement to us. You are my bothers and sisters. You are a part of our family.
Some of you have given financially to our ministry. I can not explain to you how many times we have not know where the money would come from in order to start this new work in Hamilton, or pay a bill, or support an event that we felt God was calling us to do. We prayed that God would provide and stepped out in faith and God laid it on your hearts to give. In all honesty, every time it happens I am surprised because you give without us ever telling you about the need. And every time I am surprised I remind myself that God is working all over the world to bring His plans to fruition. Some of you give faithfully each month and some of you have given for something very specific. Both of these sacrifices are significant blessings to us. You are my brothers and sisters. You are a part of our family.
No mater what role you have played in the body of Christ please know that your role is significant and gives glory to Yahweh. I am filled to overflowing with thankfulness for each and everyone of you.