Friday, December 11, 2009

Eden's dedication

This past weekend, we had Eden's dedication service. Much seemed to be going against it, with Israel crouping up suddenly the day before, fever and all. I started coming down with the yuck as well. Going in to church that morning, I found out that we were moved to the smaller cabin, which was bad news since our growing group has been scrunching into the larger cabin. I had invited friends and family for the service -- which would mean more people than usual in less space. But it was precisely because I had people planning to come that I did not cancel.

We were so blessed by those who were able to be with us that day. My family came up for the weekend and Pat's dad and step-mom were at the service as well. Sue and Matt and their kids were there. It was wonderful to be able to worship with our blood family and to have them giving their smiles to the occasion.

Eldon and Louise Morehouse came as well. I'm not quite sure what words would best describe how humbled and honored we felt to have them there. They are older and wiser than most anyone else we know and their presence carries a weight that others' does not. We know them mostly from our time at Muncie Alliance, so in some way, they bring with them a blessing from our parent church.

But for some reason I can't quite articulate, I was most honored by the presence of our friends and neighbors who do not typically come inside a church. In the past, perhaps I would have been most glad to give them a reason to come to a church. Or maybe I would have spent the service hoping something would make them want to keep coming. But this time, (though I certainly want for them all the richness that Jesus gives to me...) I was more just happy for what I was receiving from them. They don't go to church, but they came for us. I am sure one man in particular was quite uncomfortable, as he really has a bad taste in his mouth when it comes to church, but he came. And because he came, I know he loves us. Our neighbors love us! What a huge blessing! They were willing to set aside their schedule and be uncomfortable in a way that the rest of our friends and family didn't have to be just for us. We feel so honored by their friendship -- so honored and grateful.

As we did with Israel, we had people come up and pray over Eden. Beautiful people prayed beautiful things over her. They thanked Jesus for her. They affirmed the peace and the quiet joy about her. Eldon prayed that she would love "the least of these." I cannot think of a more beautiful gift that could be given to her or to those around her. If my daughter lives a peaceful, quiet, joyful life characterized by a love of "the least of these," I will be one proud (in the good way), grateful mom!