the moms are always excited for the opportunity to catch a shot of their families together.
The dads and kids did a great job of going with the flow...
UNTIL....things finally got REAL!
I think this may be my favorite photo of the whole week!
Sunday, our pastor made reference to the fact that the Christian walk isn't one of simply chasing butterflies. Real life involves heartache, it involves loss and it involves suffering. Not everyone will embrace our faith.
"But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed.
Do not fear their threats, do not be frightened."
1 Peter 3:14
A while back, I was asked if I would like to give the prayer at an event I was going to attend. Knowing a little background on this group, I had heard you could not mention God or Jesus and it had to first be submitted to the leaders of the group for approval. I confirmed this information with the caller and then graciously declined. Hanging up the phone, I called my husband and expressed that I felt a little funny, but it wasn't because I had said no. It was more because I would have been committing a great betrayal to not pray in God or my Savior's name. To whom would I actually be praying? He agreed, I had made the right decision.
The very next night, I was at another gathering with a group of women I've just briefly gotten to know this year. Walking in the door, the hostess asked if I would pray for the meal and also for two ladies who had just lost loved ones this past month. This is not a group that usually prays together, but it was God showing me that he knows the hearts of everyone and he will direct us to the places where he is at work in fertile soil. Friends, He is so with us!
To put the icing on His cake, a week later my husband and I attended the first event I mentioned. The generic prayer was said. My husband said, never in his life had he heard a prayer begin with "Ladies and gentlemen." Here comes the icing part! The event speaker, from out of town and not a member of the group, closed out her program by praying over this group...she addressed God as God, as Father and prayed in the precious name of her Lord! (She didn't ask permission.) woot! Toot! Get 'er done! Go God!