Don't you just love when you are in a situation all ready to bless someone and God surprises you and blesses you through someone else?
That happened to me tonight. Twice.
Once or twice a month, my family goes down to a local after-school refuge for at-risk children - a sweet place called the S.A.Y. Yes! Center - to serve dinner. This safe-haven is located in one of the roughest neighborhoods around - some say it's the heroin capital of the southeast. It's not uncommon for shots to pierce the quiet of the night.
My husband and I have a heart to serve, though there are very few places that let children serve. And yet, aren't we supposed to train our children in the way they are to go, so that when they are old they will not depart from it? The S.A.Y. Yes! Center is a little different - it's a little diamond in the rough. They love it when individuals come and tutor/mentor the kids and families serve dinner to the kids. More than that, they love it when families stay and EAT dinner with the kids.
So, here's my first surprise blessing. My girls LOVE to come here. They often ask, "Mom, can we PUHHH-LLEEESE go to the S.A.Y. Yes! Center for dinner tonight?!" Wow. That blessed me. My children actually WANT to go and serve these children. They love to do it! And the S.A.Y. Yes! children LOVE my girls! They get tickled trying to figure out which sister is which (yes, they are identical twins!)
It's just a blessing to have all racial barriers broken down. It's precious seeing my children eat next to a child who may be homeless tomorrow. Or to watch them jumping rope with a child who could probably never give them anything in return. AND THEY LOVE IT!
Now, on to my second surprise blessing...
There is this precious mom who actually volunteers at the S.A.Y. Yes! Center. I never really new much of her story - until tonight. I casually grabbed my plate and sat across from her and asked how she was doing. Boy - her whole face lit up and she just started talking about how blessed she was. In the middle of her elation, she mentioned that there's a YouTube video of her. Really? Yes - a video showcasing her story of how she and her son were homeless, living at the Atlanta Children's Shelter, and now she's an employed home-owner who volunteers her time and talents and who encourages others. Such an inspiring story.
Wanna see it? Thought you would!
Thanks for blessing me tonight, Brooke, Taylor and Billie.
Thanks for blessing me tonight, God!