This past week, we went on a family vacation. On the first day, we stopped by Furman University in Greenville, SC to drop Kelsey off for camp. I have friends that live there, Mike and Cindy. We all went to college together and still keep in touch. Whenever we come into Greenville, we stop by for a visit. This time, Mike's parents, Verlon and Judy, invited us to stop by their house and have a big get-together with everyone--MIke, Cindy, their four boys, Me, Blair, and our seven kids. And, no, they were not bribed or threatened!
When we got there, we all just fell into step. Judy got out the cups, I started chopping vegetables, and Cindy started cooking up some sausage. Then it came time for prayer before we ate. Verlon didn't just say thanks for the food. He said thanks for the kids, saying, "We know that children are a blessing from you, Lord, and we are grateful for each one that is here today." Now, those may seem like nice words to say, but for Verlon, they came straight from the heart. Most older couples just want their peace and quiet, believing they put in their hours raising kids, now it's time for a break. But not Verlon and Judy. They truly love kids and it shows.
After dinner, we all went outside and played on the zip line that goes over the pond in their backyard. Klara and Kenna helped Judy pick some blueberries from their bushes. Verlon taught Karis how to steer a boat. And there was a beautiful peace that fell over that warm, delicious summer evening. My children felt not only welcome, but wanted (and, believe me, that's no easy feat). But for Verlon and Judy, it was just their nature. As long as I've known them, they have always strived for eternal rewards, and not rushed after the pleasures of this world. They make do. They live a simple life, but with utter enormity. They have huge hearts and it shows. I believe one statement summed it all up. Klara and I were following Judy inside after playing by their pond and we were pretty dirty. I stopped at the door and said, "Klara, we should take off our shoes." Without hesitation, Judy remarked, "No such thing. This is what we built our home for. Come on in."
What are you building your home for?
Think about it.