|esther's first time in the ocean!|
for mother's day, alex got me the book "when helping hurts". flowers are nice, but books last much longer :) and i have heard so many things about this book that i was eager to jump in. and, wow. it has been just as i had heard it was: convicting, educational, eye-opening, exciting, encouraging, challenging... all at the same time. i am totally rethinking how i view ministry to the poor. there are a few big things that have stuck with me so far. first of all, in poverty alleviation it is really important that we diagnose what the problem is. most of the time we diagnose the problem as being a lack of material goods, so we give food/clothing/shelter to the poor. but this is not always the need (and sometimes, we actually hurt the poor and ourselves when we give these things and they are not the real need). sometimes the problem leading to poverty is actually a lack of education, oppression by powerful people, personal sins or an incorrect world view (or a mixture of these things). i am only about 1/4th of the way in and i am excited to keep learning and growing through this book. it is likely that we will be working with the poor in whatever overseas ministry God leads us to, so this is good preparation.
since starting to crawl, baby girl has gotten more and more active and hasn't looked back. she can now cross the room in just seconds and she loves to crawl on top of and bear hug/tackle her big sis. she is getting more and more personality each day, which is making us grow even closer to her. i'm glad that we know with a fair degree of certainty when she will leave (just about 2 months from now). but it will be hard when it happens.
memorial day weekend was esther's first time in the ocean. we drove down to south orange county for a campsite bbq near the beach with some friends. it was only in the low 70's, so we didn't think it would be warm enough to swim, and didn't bother bringing swimming suits, towels or extra clothes. but i should have known that my little water bug wouldn't stay away from the water for the world. at home she loves the bath, constantly sticks her hands in the hose water as i water the garden and has a deep affinity for throwing dirt and toys in the watering can when it is full. so, like i said, i should have known. but i didn't, because, logically, who wants to swim when its in the low 70's? well, toddlers don't operate out of logic. so of course esther ran to the water as soon as she saw it. we tried to minimize the damage by rolling up her pants, but that only lasted for about a minute until she dove head first into a wave.
but it was really endearing to see how fearless she was (she literally would have died if it wasn't for alex being right at her side to save her each time she was knocked over by a wave) and so refreshing to see the innocent eagerness of a toddler. we could have watched her for hours, but her soaked clothes and the cool air didn't make for a good combination, and she was soon shivering. with her hair matted with sand and her cloth diaper sopping wet we trekked back up the hill to the campsite. fortunately, there were rinse off showers at the campsite to remove the sand, and it turned out that we had a change of clothes in the diaper bag, so esther was soon clean, warm and dry again.
sermons/talks i listened to in may that i recommend:
[these are both from the gospel coalition's 2012 women's conference]
the sabbath: a biblical theological approach by mary willson
marriage through gospel eyes: mrs. law or mrs. grace? by jani ortland