It was not a mild cheery day, rather a brisk wind filled the air, leaves that once graced the trees were blowing furiously filling the sky with a richness of beautiful autumnal colour. The clouds darkened as mild raindrops hit the car windscreen soon followed by torrential rain. Summer had gone and the boughs of the tree were bare, but then all seasons come to an end.
It was another ‘busy day’ for ‘The Moore’s’ – every traffic light ‘red’. Waiting (patiently) for the ‘green’ to flash, I smiled as I gazed through the window watching the children crossing over, holding tightly to their brightly coloured lunch boxes, back packs as they hurriedly made their way to the other side of the road. Many entering a new season, a new beginning, the smaller ones skipping excitedly to school. A future of opportunity stretching before them.
Aeryn (5) (my husband’s third grandchild) sent her grandad a picture – ‘My First Day At School’ with a tiny message ‘Thank you grandad for my back pack’. His smile as he opened the image said it all! How much we can learn from a child, I find myself lingering a little longer than necessary in their childlike world, it is the simple expressions of childlike spirit that captivate my thinking and fill my heart. My thoughts were clearly back home in Oradea as I thought of the hundreds of children without a back pack. Shirley, have you loved or felt enough?’. My thought mode was interrupted as I was alerted we were entering Ballymena where I was to meet my friend Alison McCloy. Car change completed successfully Dr. Moore made his way to Nicholson and Bass to finalise the production of his new book ‘Hope in the midst of Shadows’, available at the end of September.
Alison and I were making our way to Belfast; Grace Baptist Church BW had purchased and filled over one hundred back packs (Alison had already collected another one hundred plus back packs from Magherafelt Baptist Church BW a few days earlier). God’s timely ‘Handfuls on Purpose’. What an Amazing God we serve! In the words of a much loved hymn: ‘He whose heart is kind beyond all measure’. There is that word again ‘Beyond’. We shared our thoughts and talked friend to friend clearly realising that with every thorn (of circumstance) there is beauty to be found. The perfection of a rose may also have a thorn. My heart warms as Ithink of roses that filled the garden of my heart these past weeks. Casa Grace urgently needed back packs for the children within their programme. It is the responsibility of each family to purchase a back pack with the required stationery, sports equipment, packed lunch …God’s provision in touching the hearts of the ladies from Grace and Magherafelt Baptist Women’s Fellowship. Thank you for your love and compassion.
My friend Barbara McCook thought of the little girls within the Emanuel Hospice programme who will spend Christmas in hospital this year. They will be greeted on Christmas Morning with a ‘Disney Frozen Handbag’ filled to capacity with lots of goodies. The heart of a mother, a grandmother – once more, God’s Provision.
Another rose whose sweetness of character and gentleness of nature links my thoughts to that of the ‘Sweet Pea’ – a delicate flower that climbs and entwines itself to form a picture of beauty. Alice is such a flower and has spent many hours designing, drawing, painting Adam’s Room. The room is now finished, complete with carpet, awaiting the arrival of the three pallets to furnish this new ‘Therapy Centre’ for the orphan, disabled and abandoned children. Alice, Emanuel University is a very special young woman, her many talents combine to make a ‘posy of love’. We can never love enough!
Such a richness of blessing is found as we serve together. The Lord sends ‘These My Little Ones’ to love and those to love them by giving from their hearts. Love never fails.
Shirley, 20 September, 2017