Talladega Fun

We think we have the best job in all of NASCAR!  Keep reading and I think you’ll see why…

This weekend, the MRO Community Center was sponsored by Jimmie and Chandra Johnson, in honor of Chad Knaus.  When a family sponsors a weekend, they also facilitate an event for families – they get the fun of planning and we get the honor of hosting.  Chandra was unable to be with us this weekend, so Chad and Brooke graciously arranged to have free Kona ice available to everyone in the D/O lot from noon to 3:00 pm on Saturday.  Boy, was it a hit!  Kids and adults alike enjoyed the shaved ice and the fun of choosing all your flavors on the outside of the truck.

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Chad and Brooke were so thoughtful to set this up for us.  We want to publicly thank them for their generosity and kindness – they didn’t have to do anything but instead they showed us grace by going above and beyond to bless us and the community.

We were also given a surprise blessing as Jamie and Christy McMurray brought two pools – one with water and one with sand to the playground.  They wanted to honor our weekend sponsors.  Jamie and Christy also brought many water and sand toys to share.  All of the kids loved it!  The water was perfect for a hot Alabama weekend – the adults even got in on the water gun battles!  There was one final surprise – the icing on the cake in our eyes.  They brought fruit for all the kids…but with a twist:

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Jamie proved himself a Renaissance man – he carved this watermelon shark!

The rest of our weekend was filled with the usual gifts: laughter, hugs, crafting, learning, playing, imagining, singing, and dancing.  We had our tee-pee there, as we spent our Bible Times learning the story of Moses and celebrating the Bible story inside it.  We even had a shadow puppet show:

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This year, our over-arching theme, the thing that God keeps teaching us most, is grace.  We’re defining it – a ready favor.  So simple that our smallest child can understand but so complex and beautiful that we keep seeing different angles of it each weekend.  Grace upon grace is given to us by God but it doesn’t stop there.  We are also challenged by him to be grace-livers.  He, as the Grace Giver, lives and most in us – in each moment, we can choose to open our hearts and hands in grace toward others or we can close both and miss opportunities to be the hands and feet of Jesus.  We’ve seen children become grace-livers and we’ve been challenged by their obedience and faith.  We’ve seen community members extend grace to us and to each other in surprising and beautiful ways.  God continues surprising us with grace – on the good days and bad days, in every moment, He’s challenging us to see His grace.  He’s giving us the eyes to see grace – ready favors – all around, and we are giving Him thanks.

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We were the recipients of many ready favors from God this weekend.  We are blessed – to be a blessing.  May we each continue to grow in God’s grace.

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