Of all the really cool things that happened this weekend, this one drove it home:
I was at Spring Conference (formerly known as Emmaus) this weekend, which is a sort of a big retreat for all the InterVarsity students that go to universities in the eastern Carolinas. And it's pretty cool, it's at Myrtle Beach and retreats are always great and well-needed, so. And it was over Valentine's Day, which means my Valentine's Day present to myself was taking a three hour nap (and it was glorious, oh man, I could do it every day), falling asleep to Alicia making a chill-music love mix cd.
Part of what the speakers were talking about this weekend was identity, God as the father, all that good stuff. So when we left, we went to Zaxby's and while we were eating I saw this sign on the wall that said "Nude Bathers Watch For Poisonous Jelly Fish." Which is pretty much the most amazing thing I think I've ever read. And so I wanted to get a picture of it, but there were these two little old ladies sitting in front of it so I just figured I'd wait until they left.
Well, by the time we were leaving they were still sitting there talking so I got up and I (TENSE SHIFT!) walk over to them to ask and see if I can have a picture, and they say yes and so while I'm taking it, I start talking to them. Turns out they're from High Point and Pittsburg, but they've been living down here for thirty four years now. And oh, I'm from the beach too? And they've just gotten out of church, so oh oh, have they heard of InterVarsity? That's why we're here this weekend--yes ma'am, we're college students. And the conversation goes on like that until I've got the picture and I have to leave.
But as I go, the woman on the right holds out her hand and takes mine, pulls me toward her, and says to me, "Wherever you go in life, don't ever forget whose you are."
Whose. Not who, but whose. Which is incredible, because first, she seriously said that, and second, because a huge point of this weekend is that we are the Father's, we are his children, and he loves us for no other reason except that we are his children and he is that good. And things with identity and the father have always been a little weird for me, and especially so since this past Christmas. But also especially so since this past Christmas, I've been beginning to really know and understand that God is my father and everything else falls short, so lucky for me, I've always had the best there is. And there is no other that can take that place for me, not for anything at all. And it is pure joy, because it means that actually I found him before December. So when she said that, don't ever forget, I want to always answer: I haven't, I won't.