Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Treasures & Treats

As you probably know by now, the name of my church family is The Nest.
During the summer we like to do fun activities with our kids and teens. We call these activities Nest Quest.
This week's NQ was called Treasures & Treats. We went on a "treasure hunt" then ended up at Sweet Cece's for a cool treat of fro-yo! Yumm!!
We met at the statue on the square in downtown Franklin, TN to ask God for clues about where He wanted us to go and who He wanted us to love in His Name.
Amy took the girls and I took the boys.
When we asked God for clues, we got the following words and pictures in our boy got one of the cannons on the square, another got a lamppost with a single lamp on it, another got the number 5. One got the number 301, and another got a rainbow. The oldest two set off in one direction and I took the younger three with me.
The oldest (my 16 year old son, Blake) had seen with his spiritual eyes a bunch of random numbers, which then narrowed down to 301. As they walked down the sidewalk, his friend looked up and saw the address 301 on top of one of the storefronts on Main Street, so they went in. It was a realtor's office. They followed a man inside and saw a lady sitting behind a desk. They boldly explained what they were doing and asked if they could pray. At first the man seemed resistant, but the woman smiled broadly and excitedly said, "Oh my gosh! Yes! Please pray!!", so they prayed a blessing over the business and the people, then left to catch up with the rest of us.
Meanwhile, our little group decided to walk in the direction in which the cannon was pointing. It took us to a corner on the sidewalk. Now, all around the square there are lampposts with double lights on them, but there, behind a tree on the corner was a single lamppost! There weren't any people there and the boys sensed we were to continue walking, so we did. We were looking for a rainbow. Since it's summer time, many of the stores had brightly colored window displays, so we'd stop at each one, ask God if this was the place, and He'd say no, so we'd move on. We even saw a ship model in an antique store window, which had cannons in it, but still just sensed this was God saying we were moving in the right direction, but weren't to stop yet.
We continued down the sidewalk all the way to the end, where Starbucks is. As we stood on the corner, wondering where to go now, I said, "OK, Lord. We've followed Your clues, but now we need You to really make it clear." As soon as I said this, I looked down and there on the street were 5 rainbow colored arrows all pointing across the street! They were some sort of advertisement, but we laughed, saying "Well, you can't get much CLEARER than THAT! I mean they are ARROWS, for cryin' out loud!!" We looked across the street and there were two men carrying on a conversation in front of one of Franklin's dearly loved historic churches which sits on that corner. We made our way across the street to wait for their conversation to end. As we waited, the youngest boy in our group (age 7) kept saying he thought there was something significant about the church.
We overheard the men say goodbye to each other, then they both began heading off down the sidewalk. I thought, "Oh no! They're leaving! Now what, Lord??" Then as one continued on his way, the other stopped to push the button for the walk sign, so we saw our chance and took it. We went up to the man and I introduced myself, giving a brief explanation about what we were doing and told him God had really highlighted him today. I mean, He even sent ARROWS to point him out to us!!  I asked him how we could pray for him and he responded, "Well, it seems pretty clear you all are listening to the Lord and He knows what my prayer needs are, so let's see what He shows you!" Wow! OK, here we go!!
So, we prayed for him and as we did, he kept saying, "Wow. Wow. Wow." and shaking his head as if he couldn't believe it! We felt like the lamppost and rainbow were significant and God was reminding him that He is lighting his path and that He's keeping His promises. Afterward, he said how amazing it was and he encouraged the boys by saying how bold they were and that what they were doing matters. He then told us he works for a major musical instrument company and is over the worship dept., where he sells musical instruments to churches! That explains why the boy was sensing something about the church!
God could have delivered His messages directly to this man any number of ways, but how fun that He chose US to be His messengers that day! 
We met up with the girls, heard their story of praying for a woman at a jewelry store, then went to Sweet Cece's to celebrate God's goodness. 
As I walked down the sidewalk toward my car, I noticed those rainbow arrows every few feet along the way. How funny that none of us had seen them earlier until we asked God to make it clear! Boy! He sure did!!
Loving The One and loving the one is SO FUN!!!