Sunday, August 5, 2012

Roots of love and the shade of kindness

"No kind action ever stops with itself. One kind action leads to another. Good example is followed. A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees. The greatest work that kindness does to others is that it makes them kind themselves."  Amelia Earhart

Over two years ago I wrote the first post about Dan and I's marriage and how desperately we needed prayer to withstand the pressures we were facing.  Our photographer and friend, Christina Adam, was the first one to comment on that post.  Through this entire journey she has planted and grown love to our family in big and small ways.  Her fundraiser last fall gave even more depth to these roots and more kindness and prayer grew from her willingness to sacrifice and share. 

I've said this before I'm sure, but it bears mentioning again.  If you are moved to do something kind for someone, but your resources are limited, and you don't know where to start to make any kind of real difference, just share your heart with one or two like minded people.  Pray about how a few loaves and fishes could be multiplied.  Ask the person what they are specifically needing.  It's a beautiful thing when a seed can be planted and watered and blossom into a blessing beyond measure. 

Christina did this for Dan and I last weekend.  She wrote me several months ago asking what we needed most but sharing her heart for our marriage and the desire to give Dan and I a romantic night away.  She knew if we were given money we would use it for bills and never splurge on something like a really nice dinner or a nice hotel just because.  She had shared with some of her Bible study girls and a few other friends our story many times.  She told them her idea and collectively they pitched in what they could to plan a special retreat.  What one or two of them could not have done alone they were able to do together. 

With our Cincinnati trip coming up last Sunday Dan and I were very stressed.  It has been harder and harder of late to scrape together any dream for healing and restoration.  We have been in this place so long.  Our marriage has slipped to one of the last things on the list most days.  My body is so broken and by the time we crawl into bed there is the rumblings of my parents overhead and so much fatigue and pain, and where we might have turned to one another in the past we turn away now.  There is a strong foundation of love and respect but any energy it would take to go through the motions and niceties that result in intimacy is just gone. 

Last Friday my mom left for West Virginia with Laney to visit my sister, Rochelle, and her family.  We took Danica for her first sleepover EVER with anyone except my parents.  We felt complete peace having her stay with my grandma and grandpa Roberts.  My dad watched Twixie, an act of love in and of itself.  As we pulled up to the Sheraton in Cuyahoga Falls, it felt like we were lighter already.  I went in to check in and get our room keys.  They had upgraded our room to a suite overlooking the falls.  She handed me a gift wrapped box from Christina and the girls, one Christina had delivered personally.  We felt special and cared for instantly.  Our beautiful room had a separate living room with a TV and sliding doors that opened into the bedroom.  The king bed was piled high with the most amazing linens and pillows.  It had another TV and connected to the huge bathroom with a Jacuzzi soaking tub.  Sunshine streamed in the huge windows and the sound of the falls was so relaxing.  Inside our gift was money and a gift certificate for dinner at the very nice hotel restaurant.  There was a special bar of sea salt chocolate and a Starbucks gift card.  Any guesses what we did first?  That's right.  We slipped into the cool thread count, pulled the shades and took a nap!

The evening was wonderful.  Our table at dinner overlooked the falls, and we watched kayakers while we ate an amazing meal.  There was cologne and perfume a plenty, and I did get a horrible headache, but I didn't let it stop me from lingering over great conversation with Dan.  It comes easily when we take time to be together alone.  This love thing is organic with us.  We fan the flames of our enduring hope.  We dream of someday.  We remind one another it's going to be okay.  It has to be.  After dinner we snuggled up in bed and watched a movie.  We held one another.  In the morning we woke up, had breakfast delivered to us and then experienced the ultimate luxury of parents anywhere and everywhere.  We went BACK to bed. 

I honestly don't know how we would have made it through Cincinnati without the gift of recharging our batteries in this very special way.  As always, God's planning behind the scenes and perfect timing brought us to a sweet time of refreshment and enjoyment before sending us back into the trenches to fight this battle He's chosen us for. 

How do we say "thank you" for this kind of love?  We can't really.  We literally suffer our gratitude for the massive amount of kindness we have received.  Firm roots and sweet shade are our refuge because of all of you.  What can we do?  Humbly remind you if the Spirit is moving you to care for someone and you don't know how, ask them.  If you can't do it alone, ask someone to help you make it possible.  Trees still bloom in the desert.  Miracles are born of faith, hope and great love.

No comments:

Post a Comment