Well, today begins the journey. What an exciting day! Since these could be my last 30 days as little Hopey's mommy on this earth, I have decided to make them the very best 30 days of her life! Finish strong! No regrets!
A couple of months ago, Darrell Goodwin, a friend of ours, built an adorable playhouse for Hope in our backyard. Hope has a spine issue which prevents her from having the typical swing set/slide, so a playhouse became the next best option. She loves to run to her little house, stomp up the ramp to the front porch, lean over the rail and babble in "Hope language". She escapes into fantasy land when she has time with her little house. We have named it: "Hope's Love Shack" , because it makes her so happy.
Over the last two weekends, my aunt Lynnette and cousin Amy have been painting the love shack with some help from our family. This has been a real gift for Hopey, and the project will be complete today. Perfect timing!
In scripture, whenever God did something REALLY big and wonderful, His people would set up memorials to commemorate or celebrate the occasion. In doing so, they would visually see these
tangible memorials and remember God and His love and care for them. After Hope's second open-heart surgery, we had a large stepping stone made as a memorial to honor the Lord's work in healing Hope through surgery. The stepping stone sits beside our front door and is a constant reminder that God is the one who saved Hope. I'm including a picture so you can see it.
Today, our family decided "Hope's Love Shack" will literally become a house of love for her. We want to invite each of you to be a part of it. I will leave Sharpee Markers, Paint, and Brushes inside the little house for praying friends to come inside and write a Bible verse, a prayer, a word of encouragement, a poem, or even draw a picture. Please feel free to take artistic liberty and paint love for Hope wherever you want in that little house. If you live away, please feel free to paint a message on a piece of tin for me to hang in the little house for you. (email me for my home address if you don't have it: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Hope plays in her "Love Shack" every day. Won't it be wonderful for her to be surrounded by the prayers and thoughts of her praying warriors while she plays? I believe this will honor the Lord as we begin Day #1 by making prayer our priority.
We begin marching tonight, and I will be thinking of each of you who have emailed me to say you'll be marching around your homes each evening with your hands raised as you lift up Hope to the Lord who loves her so much. I am blown away by your commitment, and I can only imagine the great big grins that will be on the faces in the heavenlies this evening as they watch in anticipation for the marching to begin.....a march for one who is considered imperfect and mentally challenged by worldy standards.....a taker instead of a giver.....weak and lowly. I am reminded of the verse:
"Whatever you do for the least of these.....you have done it for me!"