Dear hubby surprised all of us and planned a get-away to Madison. It was a much needed reprieve from our hectic life.
We arrived Friday night at the hotel, which was booked solely on the fact that it was the only one in the city with an indoor water park. Everyone quickly changed into their swimming suits and we were ready to hit the slides. Our plans were soon thwarted when we read the following sign, "Pool closed due to vomit in it." Everyone who knows me knows that I would rather have read it was full of blood or boogers - anything but the dreaded vomit.
All of us changed clothes and decided to go play a mean round of mini-golf. The children all take after their mother when it comes to accuracy and hitting a ball. Let's just say the ball never goes in the direction it is supposed to.
We ended the evening by taking a stroll down State Street. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Madison, State Street is the epitome of the melting pot. You will find every kind of person and personality there. Joshua feared for his life and decided he liked our small town better. Caleb thought the bantering between people was hilarious. Elizabeth loved the music wanna-be musicians were playing and being silly with her dad (at one point they pretended they were chickens - and on that street, no one thought they were crazy). The younger ones only cared about which flavor of ice cream to choose.
Saturday we experienced something called Africa-Fest. It was amazing! We had the privilege of meeting people from all over Africa. A couple of highlights were meeting a woman from Liberia. She found out my daughter was from Liberia as well. The woman asked me which tribe she was from and started speaking to my daughter in her native tongue. To my complete astonishment, Brie answered her back in Bassa! Mind you, she is only 3 and has been with us for 1 and 1/2 years. God has made our minds in such an intricate way, hasn't He?
The second blessing was a booth at the end of the lane. I have been missing Africa terribly ever since I returned. I particularly miss a certain city that God has laid upon my heart - Jinja, for this city holds people that are dear to my heart. Earlier that very morning I had spent some time with God and had been reading about Gideon.(trust me, I'll tie all of this together soon) God called Gideon "mighty warrior" even though Gideon was small in stature. The lesson I learned is that the way God sees us is not at all how we see ourselves. He sees our potential when we are trusting in Him alone. So, back to the booth. I look up and see a great big sign that says "Jinja"! It was the only booth labeled with the name of a city (and the city I love out of all of the ones in Africa). Of course I had to go and talk to the men who were manning the booth.
We shared our love for Africa and talked about what we were doing in Jinja. I finally decided I had taken up enough of these gentleman's time and turned to leave. One of the men stopped me and said, "I'm sorry, I didn't catch your name." I told him mine and he said, "Nice to meet you. My name is Gideon"!
Oh how I love my Savior!
Needless to say, we had a great time in Madison.