My parents' congregation at their church is completely amazing. Every time I visit, they open their arms up with so much love. I brought one of my teenage nieces there to visit last Summer. It was her first time ever visiting; and before I could even turn around, she was swooped off by one of the other teens. By the end of all the church services, she had been invited to a couple of activities that week, and another girl was begging her to come to her house that week to hang out. Their sincerity and warmth make you want to stay there forever.
I LOVE their congregation; but on this visit to their church, my soul was filled with such heart-ache for my sick friend and her family that I did not want to see anyone smile. I was glad I was sitting in the very back. Maybe nobody would notice me, and I could pretend like I was never there.
The services ended, and the most beautiful soul... an angel on Earth... noticed me right away. She was the very 1st person who rushed up to me at the very back of the room. Lori has down-syndrome, but she serves as the Primary secretary and does it well! I love her so much-she is amazing!! She gave me the tightest squeeze and biggest smile. I could not have been hugged by a purer soul. Her power to melt hearts is a miracle; her smiling face was perfect. Angel Lori softened my heart to the love being offered around me.
The next day, when I received the phone call that my best childhood friend had died, I crumbled into my angel mother's arms while my 2-yr. old, Juliana, cuddled in my lap. I told my mother that "Juliana Rain" had been named right. She has a power to wash away sadness by her sweet little angel arms. There I was with my arms entwined between these 2 angels, when my other 2 children in the room immediately began to paint. Within moments, they presented me with their greatest gifts of love... a hug and a painting.