Enjoy this clip of Mary singing at the string camp. No one really knew she sang, until there was a fun family night and about 10 or so individuals or groups participated and played an instrument (couldn't be their normal instrument played in usual manner) or did a skit. Everything was all so fun & creative!
It was awkward at first to "make a new friend," for many had attended the camp for multiple years and were renewing old friendships made at camp (many things that are worthwhile can start off awkward, can't they?) It was a nice surprise when a young friend from home, called out "Mary!" when we entered the dining hall. It was Sophie, a violin acquaintance from home! Because Mary is blind, she was attached with cane in one hand and her free hand to my arm as we walked up the beautiful hills and sidewalks of the college campus where the camp was held.
By the end of the week, we had made several friendships with the campers, parents and teachers that I hope will continue.
We met one delightful mom (now a new friend! Hi Ann!) that had a wonderful southern accent mixed with a deep, warm voice. She told us that her sister who is near my age was also born blind. We had such a good time exchanging stories, and it greatly encouraged my heart. Mealtime in the cafeteria was the best time to talk. Ann came with her 12-year-old daughter, Emily, whose face was always smiling.
No one knew that Mary had an uncanny ability to imitate people since they did not know us! Suddenly, Mary was talking with Emily, and we heard Emily burst into laughter. She said, "Mom, she can imitate, you!" We asked Mary to say what she said again, and then we all burst into laughter as she captured Ann's voice to the point if you closed your eyes, you would have thought Ann was speaking!
|Mary with new friends, Emily (on Mary's left) and Claire.|
Mary exclaimed, "Oh, let's call her Elizabeth! Where is she? Why is everyone so scared? Do you see Elizabeth now?" Just then, our teacher (who also became a new friend to us! Hi Georgia!) came in with a broom just as the maintenance man rushed in after hearing all the screams.
He wanted to know if it was a chipmunk, and not a mouse. "We have a few of those that live around here," said the maintenance man. "Did he have a bushy tail?" he asked staring at me. "No, it was a long, skinny mouse tail." When I said that our friends standing on the chairs screamed again.
Mary kept hoping we would see Elizabeth again, and she would ask me each day as soon as we arrived to our exercise room if I could see her, but we never saw her again.
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I have much more the Lord showed me there as just being in the mountains offered such refreshment in the Lord for me as the green lush hills and over 100 year old trees on the grounds made me relax in our God of Creation.
I will write more soon for my heart is bursting. There's two things I want to share with you next time that strengthened my faith. I pray your faith will be strengthened, too.
The only reason I must stop typing is today is July 1, and that happens to be somewhat (not somewhat but a definite) holiday to Mary because it brings in her favorite month of the year. She has a lot planned for tonight when she wants to "give July a party" and we have one friend coming over to celebrate.
We are making Ghiradelli brownies (I got mix from Costco) that have lots of chocolate chips in them. We are going to ice them with chocolate icing, and serve mint chocolate chip ice cream. Mary's tradition for today is she likes to play "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring," by Bach on the keyboard, and have us all dance to Tchaikovsky's "Chinese Dance," from the Nutcracker. She thinks it wouldn't be July 1 without all this celebration, so here we go. ☺ For me today, this is God's will!
Jim Elliot, that great man of faith, once said to do to the hilt all you believe to be the will of God!
Let's see God in the ordinary experiences of life. Let's do everything we believe is the will of God in the way a Christian should do it!
When we drive our child,
when we find meaning in a "mishap,"
when we wait in a checkout line,
when we go beyond our strength to help someone else,
when we write that note,
when we wait for ...
"Everything that one turns in the direction of God is prayer."
- Ignatius of Loyola
(shown to me in Prayer: Finding the Heart's True Home, Richard J. Foster, pg. 174.)
What's His will for you today? Will you consider every action you do for the glory of God (all we do as Christians done the way a Christian should) your prayer?
Walk by Faith,