Tuesday, January 10, 2012
I generally feel like we live in a pretty safe area...except every now and then I am reminded that while we have all been safe physically we can not say the same for some of our things. You may remember a few years back (the summer before we had Lily) when someone broke into our car and stole my purse, our pillows, and used our Campus Crusade for Christ credit card to buy internet porn. One of the most bizarre things and yet oh so true. I think I need to tell the whole story sometime because it got even stranger. But moving on to more recent crimes...this fall we had something else stolen from our yard...the big red ball pictured here with Eli (about a week before it was taken). The giant red ball belonged to the ministry technically and Joe used it for an outreach with guys on campus called Bloodball. That thing was HUGE and pretty awesome. So one day this fall we blew it up in the backyard for my playgroup (it was the first time we really even let our kids play with it). It was a blast and we left it in the yard for about a week- because we weren't worried at all that someone would run off with it. Oh, but we should have been. Because someone did. Yep, giant red ball stolen from our yard!! Try reporting that one to the cops (but we did since it was worth about $400). I thought for sure someone would find it (because how do you hide something that big?) but alas we have never seen it again. In my opinion this crime was just LOW. Seriously, someone was sad enough to steal what appeared to be nothing more than a very cool toy that belonged to my children. They stole from my CHILDREN!!! OK, technically they stole from our ministry (maybe that's even worse). And just when I had forgotten about that....I had another rude awakening this morning. For Christmas a supporter of our ministry gave us a special personal financial gift and we were saving the money to buy our kids a pass to our local children's museum (which I've really been wanting to do for a bit now). I also had Christmas money from Joe's parents that I was saving to buy new dishes. Joe cashed the checks recently and we foolishly left the cash in our van. We always lock our cars at night, but for some reason that just didn't happen last night. And this morning as the kids and I were loading into the van to head to the children's museum (to buy the long awaited pass) I discovered that the money was gone. I was hopeful that Joe moved it. Not only didn't Joe move it, but he also happened to find an empty bank envelope laying on the driveway outside our van this morning. Yep, $140 in cash- STOLEN!!! Say it with me....uggggghhhhh!
Oh my, was I angry...I wanted to hurt someone. I was really looking forward to having new dishes. And I can't even believe that someone essentially stole something from my kids AGAIN! I promptly drove right to the children's museum and purchased the pass anyway...partially because my kids were so looking forward to it and I just couldn't disappoint them (and we were already loaded in the van, bags packed, and lunches made) and partially because I just refused to let the people who took our money win. It's going to take some financial juggling, but I think it will be okay. The dishes on the other hand will have to wait until my birthday (or maybe I'll start buying one a month)!:)
Anyway...I was ANGRY...remember that I wanted to hurt someone. And then as I watched my kids play at the museum (the actual moment was while they were pretending to garden and harvest vegetables) I began to feel God soften my heart. And as we drove home God began to gently remind me that I need to CHOOSE joy (this could be my life theme I think). I need to choose joy...when I'm faced with loss, when my day to day is not going as I planned, when evil seems to prevail....because evil will NEVER prevail in the end....because in light of eternity $140 will mean nothing...nothing. And right there is the car God enabled me to choose joy instead of bitterness and even gave me the strength to thank Him for the morning and to pray for the very seem people I wanted to harm a few hours earlier. And that's when it hit me...God is changing me. I have oh so far to go, but slowly God is changing me...and this has nothing to do with me, but everything to do with Him.
So, while the police can't really do much to help us (we did report it just to be safe) I know that it will be okay, because I have HOPE (and there is no amount of cash that can buy that).