This weekend I got to go to Freeport, Illinois, the hometown of my scheduling manager, Donna. Donna came with me for these events since she was obviously excited to get to go back to her hometown, and the events were hosted by her good friends, Steve and Kim Fricke. I know why they are her good friends now, because they were absolutely lovely. We stayed out on their farm for the weekend.
Saturday night I did a women’s event with their church, Grace Valley Christian Reformed Church, acting as host and several other local church also attending. What a warm and wonderful church! There are several people in this congregation dealing with very difficult situations, including ALS and special needs children – two issues about which we know more than we wish we did – and they were doing it with such courage and trust in God. And the way their church was rallying to their support really touched me!
We had a great time that night, and there was even a part in the middle where we all did zumba (and no, I wasn’t leading it!) which gave Donna a lovely opportunity to take embarrassing pictures of me. Thanks, Donna.
The next morning I led worship for the morning service at Grace Valley and again was just struck by the warmth and faith of this congregation. Especially moving was a moment where a little boy in their church who is in a wheelchair was asking for prayer before he went in for yet another surgery. He was saying that he really didn’t want to go to the hospital again and that he just wanted to be “a regular kid.” It almost broke my heart. I have a new song on the album called “Your Child” that I almost feel was written for him even though I wrote it before I met him. To see the love and compassion on the faces of the people around him was wonderful – they obviously loved this boy. That is what the family of God is meant to be.
On a lighter note, I also got to do another first for me – ride in a semi. Yep, never done that before, but Steve took me. And on Sunday, I was awoken by some sound I couldn’t identify. I often forget where I am when I wake up and I was thinking, “what in the world is that? Oh yeah, I’m in Illinois. What is that sound?” and when I opened my window, there were about 30 cows looking in a me. Also a first. 🙂
In an irony, my husband and I crossed in the Chicago airport – he has to be out here this week for work, so I was trying to beat my kids home from school. With a delayed flight, I didn’t quite make it, but my mom filled in the gap – thanks mom! Back to trying to get the color right on the artwork for the new album – it’s been one thing after another, but I think we may get this album done yet!