Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Lord is Everywhere!

O Lord, our Lord, How majestic is your name in all the earth! Psalm 8:1

Throughout out my life, I have been a christian. I was raised in the church and chose to be saved and confirmed in the 8th grade. Several times since that important event, I have been touched by the Lord in ways I can not explain and had experiences that have changed me as a person. This past weekend was another one of those amazing experiences.

Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and you plans will succeed. Proverbs 16:3

Friday morning, I headed off to Memphis with my dear friends Michelle and Jodi. You might recall that we had this weekend planned for quite sometime now. The whole purpose of the weekend was to raise money for St. Jude and to run in honor of Michelle's nephew Jackson. Here we are at the St. Jude Heroes Pasta dinner. We were able to attend this due to Michelle's hard work with collecting donations. Way to go Michelle! You could feel the Lord's presence in the room during this dinner, and this was the first time we encountered the Lord during this trip. He is everywhere!

Here I am pictured with our school's secretary Ms. Donna. She, her husband Ben and a few other people from our area traveled to Memphis to walk/run in memory of a little girl from our county. I knew that this group would be attending the pasta party but did not have any idea where they would be sitting, etc. After we got our food, we came into the grand ballroom and found a quick seat scanning the crowd to see if we could find them. You would never believe that they were only two tables over from where we were going to sit. We decided it would be nice to sit with them for dinner. In this room full of 1,000 people, you would have never thought we would have found them so quickly. Yes, the Lord is everywhere!

Anyone who is a runner might recognize the face pictured below. Yes . . . . .that is Hal Higdon! He was the keynote speaker at this fantastic event. In case you don't know, he is a marathon runner, trainer, and writer. My friend Karen and I used his training schedule when we trained for our half-marathon this past spring. It was so neat to see him face to face and to know that he helped me check off one the items on my Bucket List. The Lord is everywhere!

A new command, I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.
John 13:35

The little boy pictured below is Evans. Evans is a St. Jude patient was diagnosed with ALL when he was 3. He attended the Heroes Dinner with his mother Maleese who came to tell his story. She explained that Evans was diagnosed in one day through St. Jude and started treatment the next. She confirmed the love that she and her family received from St. Jude and the love that I am sure all families feel when they have to spend time at the St. Jude hospital. Again, the Lord is everywhere!

Here we are Saturday morning before running/walking in our event. If you don't already believe that the Lord blessed us on this trip, let me tell you a little story. We left our hotel at 6:20. This time was a little behind schedule for what we had planned Friday night. As we started on our way, we realized that we did not have directions to get to where we needed to be to start the race. You would think that one of the three of us would have figured that out, but we didn't and started on our merry way. As we are traveling, we all seem to be saying, " Ummm . . .I don't think we are going the right way!" or "I don't remember this from last night!" But, by some miracle, we ended up driving right into downtown Memphis, and this was right where we needed to be. The only thing we could figure out was that God picked our car up and put it on the right path. The Lord is everywhere!

After the race, we headed back to the hotel to shower and get ready to return back to downtown Memphis to cheer on the half/full marathoners. After our incident earlier in the day, you would think that one of us would have said something about getting directions. Nope! We drove around, turned around, went right, went wrong . . . Losing about 30 minutes of our cheering time. Oh, how the Lord had a plan for me.

If you don't read the blog "Kelly's Korner", I would like to encourage you to do so. I found her blog when I was looking for blogs of other teachers. Back in the summer, Kelly asked for prayers for a close friend of hers named Katie and added the link to Katie's blog "Katie's Keepers". I chose to follow the link to Katie's blog and pray for her. Katie's story is sad, but her words are truly inspirational. You can feel the spirit through her without ever seeing her and reading her blog will draw you closer to Christ. You will never guess who the Lord put in my path at exactly the right moment in time. Yes, it was Katie! I was absolutely floored. This is a person who inspires me and so many others with her strength, and I never thought I would meet her. She lives hours away from where I live. The Lord is everywhere! Thank you Katie for the kind words and sweet pictures on your blog.

Here is the real reason for this post. Do you see this little boy? Yes, this is precious Jackson. Saturday afternoon, we spent some time visiting with him and his dad. Here is Jackson's story. Jackson Porter was born with an immune system deficiency (Chronic Granulomatous Disease). He celebrated his 3rd birthday on July 27. His first visit to St. Jude Children's Hospital was when he was six months old. Sadly, the medications the doctors thought would help this disease did not. His only option was a bone marrow transplant. January of this year, Jackson underwent his transplant. After spending four months at St. Jude, Jackson was able to return home. So far the transplant has been successful. Jackson did have a little set back a couple of weeks ago. The doctors found two spots on his brain, and they decided to do surgery. On Thanksgiving, Jackson underwent surgery to have one of the spots removed to see what needed to be done. Just in time for this weekend, he was released from intensive care and was able to have visitors. It was so uplifting to see such a little trooper! The Lord is everywhere!

After visiting with this guy for a couple of hours, he was worn out. Here he is asleep in his daddy's arms (lucky for daddy it was just in time for the SEC championship). We really enjoyed our time with Jackson and hope we get to see him home very soon. Please continue to pray!

I hope that at least one part of that story illustrates to you how great our God is! I leave you with a challenge . . . . at the end of the Heroes Dinner, the president of ALSAC/St. Jude Fundraising explained that it take 1.4 million dollars to run St. Jude for ONE DAY! He encouraged each person at the dinner (about 1,000 of us) to try to raise another $100. So, if you feel lead and feel that God has touched you, here is a link you can follow:

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