As soon as we got an inclination, while in the Philippines, that we were coming home to make the switch to become Career Missionaries, I began to think about Chad (our son's) upcoming ordination. It was heavy on my heart so, I began to pray or plead might even be a better word with the Lord; even while we were still in the Philippines. I wanted to attend his graduation form Reformed Theological Seminary but deeply longed to be present for the ordination even more than the graduation. And I couldn't see how it could possibly work. Our plans were to return to the Philippines hopefully in March through May of 2008. Never in a million years did I dream that we would still be in the States in November 2008. Is this why our funding hasn't all come in, because of my prayers? I certainly will never know that answer until I get to Heaven, but I was overwhelmed with PRAISE as we attended the ordination of our son Chad Sunday night, September 14, 2008. I had to almost pinch myself because I was in the clouds and was reminded of God saying "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts."
It was a beautiful ceremony! I made it about half way though and then the tears of gratitude began. Why God did you "first love me"? Why God did you allow me to hear your invitation to "come" when most of my family is unchurched? "Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls." Matthew 11:28-29 And God, not only have You chosen me to be your child but you have chosen our daughter and our son and Kelly my precious daughter in law to be your children as well. And then the realization hit me that Chad was being ordained as a minister of God's word! All I could do was cry tears of gratitude to God for His love, mercy and grace when I am so undeserving of it all!
One of my favorite parts of a church service is the benediction. I love those blessings from the Lord and our Pastor, John Reeves, taught us to hold open our hands to receive those blessings from God. I could only stand with my hands open and sob as Chad pronounced his very first benediction at the end of his ordination ceremony! My heart just broke loose as I sat down after receiving that benediction and I sobbed and sobbed and sobbed some more tears of gratitude to God for what He has done in our lives and for me being able to be there....to hear and receive that very first benediction from my very own son. It was truly a moment in my life that I will never ever forget. I deserve nothing but an eternity in hell, separated from God because of my sins and the depravity in my heart. I was so humbled that God would see fit to bless me and my family far above anything I could ever ask or imagine!