I’ve been in Orlando two times this February (once for the Chick-fil-A seminar and once to help my mom put on a Women of Compassion forum for Florida Baptist Children's Homes). Somewhere in there, John and I spent time with his granddad, who generously gave us a new - and very nice! - Nikon camera.
When we were back in Atlanta, I spent an afternoon outside experimenting with the camera, while John was plugging away at Turbo Tax (sorry John!). It was a gray day, and at first I was bummed because bright skies make for more brilliant pictures.
However, I came to see the beauty in the mud puddle, and as I began snapping pictures I noticed the reflection in the murky waters. Above me towered big, leafy branches of a tree. (See pictures below.)
I thought what a beautiful image it portrayed that while we're looking down into the muddy mess of life, magnificence is above for us to gaze on instead.
At the Women of Compassion conference that my mom chairs, I saw firsthand how abused, neglected, and abandoned children saw a hope beyond their reality. (Women of Compassion is made up of women who support Florida Baptist Children's Homes and are passionate about praying for, financially supporting, and helping abused, neglected, and orphaned children.)
At the conference, we shared a meal with the 19 girls who live at the Lakeland campus of the children's homes. We met house moms who have dedicated their lives to raising these children. Their passion and devotion for the children in their home was very evident in the way they loved them and all called each other "family." We heard a touching story of redemption from an abused and abandoned teenage girl who had been adopted from the children's home. Her name was Mercy.
Story after story was told of changing your perspective on life to one of hope.
So when life gives you mud puddles, look beyond it to the reflection that is above.