"Then the word of the LORD came to Zechariah, saying, “Thus says the LORD of hosts:
‘ Execute true justice,
Show mercy and compassion
Everyone to his brother.
Do not oppress the widow or the fatherless,
The alien or the poor.
Let none of you plan evil in his heart
Against his brother.’
“But they refused to heed, shrugged their shoulders, and stopped their ears so that they could not hear. Yes, they made their hearts like flint, refusing to hear the law and the words which the LORD of hosts had sent by His Spirit through the former prophets. Thus great wrath came from the LORD of hosts. Therefore it happened, that just as He proclaimed and they would not hear, so they called out and I would not listen,” says the LORD of hosts. -Zechariah 7:8-13
I have been praying and praying for our church and the town of Clayton... begging God to break my heart for the lost that are living in the shadows of our church... and He has graciously opened my eyes to opportunities this week! And I am so grateful! At Parent Orientation, there was a woman whose husband passed away this summer after a battle with a degenerative disease- leaving her a widow and her children fatherless... they will be at TLC this Fall. And another woman is newly arrived to the US (not an alien, but certainly a foreigner) she is from Poland and doesn't even know anyone to put on her application to TLC as Emergency Contacts. Her daughter is enrolled for the Fall. Another student is living in a really bad home situation involving drugs and alcohol whose mother doesn't care, gives him a curfew of 11pm (he is only 11 years old) and he has been seen riding his bike around town at 9pm... all alone. Poor, and fatherless... and as I drove home from some errands in Glassboro my heart broke... and tears spilled down my cheeks. Naively, I didn't realize that God breaking my heart for Clayton would hurt so much. But this new-found sensitivity is an answer to prayer... I needed a fresh dose of compassion and He has granted it, fiercely granted it. I have many other stories to tell... of other families who are hurting and broken that all come through the church doors to TLC every day... I am in awe of the mission we run that I didn't even have the eyes to see before! It was like the verse said, and I had stopped my ears so that I could not hear the cries of the lost. Praise Him for unstopping my ears and breaking my heart!
And one quick update about Caleb... He has his first tooth! And one more on the way. Hasn't even been terribly cranky! Just clingy and needy- I'm happy to oblige and give my boy some snuggles! Josh is home from his 12 day trip to Northern Ireland. And things are gearing up for the Fall. That's the brief summary of life at the Hallahan's!