Have you ever been paralyzed by fear? On Christmas Eve, I found myself paralyzed by love.
As most of you know, throughout the years, God has been restoring a beautiful bond between me and my kids. This year, there has been an acceleration. One very important holiday to my kids is Christmas, especially Christmas Eve.
When Katie, my twenty-two year old, heard me talking about taking Christmas to the people of the dump in Mexico, she said (in anger), “We’ll just have Christmas Eve without you!” I said, “Katie, I’ll be back in time for us to be together in the evening.” That seemed to diffuse the bomb, so it was VERY important for me to get back in time.
It’s not that we DO anything special. We’re just together, so I was needing to be back in the evening, the earlier the better. And this is the best part: we all go to sleep at the same time in the same room. We fall asleep giggling, talking, laughing, planning out our morning, etc. And we all wake up in the same way: talking, giggling, laughing…it’s the earliest my kids EVER wake up together. We walk out into the living room together. We’re just “together.”
So, I “thought” I trusted God and headed to Mexico. The plan was to leave the dump at 3:30 pm. Well, the plan changed. The Tecate border wouldn’t let our bus pass through. The Otay border wouldn’t let our bus pass through. Each time took hours because once we heard we couldn’t get through, we had to turn around and go through customs to enter back into America. The third border, San Ysidro, let us through. This was a great joy to everyone but me.
By this time, it was 2 pm. We would barely make it to the dump by 3 pm, so our 3:30 departure was out of the question. Now, it was a play-it-by-ear schedule. I had a decision to make: I would either cross the border on foot back into America, grab the trolley, and make it back to my kids, or I would board the bus and head to the dump. I was literally standing at the ramp. All of me wanted to turn around and be love for my kids, and all of me wanted to journey forward and be love to the lost. I wept. I was, without a doubt, paralyzed by love.
Janel grabbed hold of me and began to pray. She promised to get me back to the border. She wanted me to go forward to the dump. As she prayed, I wept. Just remembering it is bringing me to tears. I made a choice and stepped onto the bus.
God had a plan, and I was in it. I enjoyed serving Him at the dump and made it back in time for my kids. That night, we all went to bed at the same time in the same room and talked, giggled, laughed. Even Nathan said, “I wish we could talk all night.” It was so precious. I love these moments because they remind me that there isn’t any room for a man in my life. The coolest part is that we all woke up at the same time but were all lying there because we didn’t know if the others were awake. Then, Kyle spoke…then Katie…then Nathan…then me…and then Carolyn.
I love my God. I love my kids. I love my life. I love my story. I love that God is holding the pen and doesn’t have any reason to set it down. I am yielded to Him. At times, I experience loneliness, but I have my prayer warriors who lift me out of that.