Levi and I got back from Mozambique, Africa last Friday and I have been having a hard time adjusting. Not so much to my life back in the States but my perception of everything has changed.
We were blessed to get to spend a lot of time with family right when we got back and it was hard talking about the trip.
How do you summarize such an amazing experience that is nothing like the lives we live here, and the people are nothing like the people I know here.
I haven't quite wrapped my mind around the trip which makes it hard to talk about it. Sometimes little stories will pop out when something reminds me of Mozambique, or the kids.
More than anything, I think Zimpeto orphanage and the kids showed me how to celebrate everything. Every child at the orphanage is loved and CELEBRATED. Levi and I got to work with the special-needs house at the orphanage and I think it was my favorite day of the trip.
They have kids with all different kinds of disabilities such as CP, one was born without eyes, and none of the kids in the house could talk. One precious boy was born with some kind of disease that slowly eats away your muscles. He used to be able to walk and can't anymore.
Another sweet boy named Alfredo couldn't do anything, and had to be carried everywhere and fed slowly because he wasn't able to swallow well.
One thing that touched me about the Tias (women that took care of the kids) was that they would tell us about the kids, then would praise God for them.
Thank God for something unique about the child whether it was how much they liked to dance, or how much they liked music or how sweet their smile was.
I tend to make huge lists and go through the motions for every-day life when I'm back at home. I used to be great at thinking of things that I loved throughout the day, "blessings" that I could thank God for, but it has been harder for me the past couple years.
I've been reading One thousand gifts by Ann Voskamp and I love her equation for feeling close to God and having the most amazing, joy-filled life. It's simply thanking God for everything.
I found this today and LOVED it. Put my thoughts into words:
My love language is beauty.
I see the world in color and flavors and surprises and gifts.
My favorite days are the kind where you feel pretty and strut down the street like the heroine in a movie with a really fantastic soundtrack.
You know- the kind of days where you have big eyes to soak in the beauty of the world- even when the beauty comes in the form of things that are hard.
My surroundings mean the world to me, and my entire day can be made by a really good cup of coffee.
My Pinterest account is the gift that keeps right on giving, and my desktop is constantly full of writing, videos, photos and beautiful things dragged and lovingly kept from all corners of the inspiration-explosion we call the internet.
I’m passionate about the necessity of well-chosen glassware (don’t even get me started), an intentionally decorated house (you have to LIVE there- why not make it look like the inside of your heart when it’s at it’s best?) and really fluffy linins (especially important to me having just spent a year sleeping on a mattress pad and showering with an REI quick dry towel.)
I love creativity and creating and the creations around me, but mostly because they reflect the face of my Creator who is the most stunning of all.
I believe that life is a brilliant display of sparkles and pops and if we take the time to zoom in on a moment and notice, we’ll find the dazzling kaleidoscope of color zinging and bouncing around our seemingly ordinary world.
I believe that beauty is both simple and profound and can be found IN the most simple and the most profound parts of life.
And I believe that a life looking for beauty is a life well lived. I believe that stopping to smell the roses is the key to satisfaction, contentment and joy, and that by celebrating the gifts that fill and overflow in our every day life, we give glory and honor and well deserved gratitude to the Giver of the best gifts.
The best gift of all, being life with Him.
So a toast.
To sparkles and pops and gifts and glitter and all things beautiful- both the simple and the profound.
And most of all, to taking time to notice them. And giving credit where credit is due.
Thank you Lord for such an amazing experience. We are filled to overflow, and are so so blessed.