Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Retreat Recap Part 4: Caryn's Unforgettable Moment

The moment I met my #1 (living) Hero of the Faith - Joni Eareckson Tada!

She is so friendly and loving. The same Joni I've read about and heard through various speaking events, is the same sweet, funny, God-glorifying, God-exalting woman that I met. That was so refreshing. She is the type of person you could sit and talk with for hours and walk away so encouraged, enlightened, and energized to keep going in the faith. Here's one of my favorite quotes from her.

"For me, suffering is still that jackhammer breaking apart my rocks of resistance every day. It's still the chisel that God is using to chip away at my self-sufficiency and my self-motivation and my self-consumption. Suffering is still that sheepdog snapping and barking at my heels, driving me down the road to Calvary where otherwise I do not want to go. It is at Calvary, at the cross, where I meet suffering on God's terms." (Hope...the Best of Things, p. 15)

She knows suffering. She knows pain. But more important than that, she knows the God of hope, the God of peace, the God of all comfort. Joni, God has given you the grace to shine your light before others, "so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven" (Matthew 5:16). I praise God for you! May you finish this race strong and look forward to the day when you see your Savior & hear Him say, "Well done, good & faithful servant!"

One afternoon, I had the privilege of catching her when few people were around. After chatting, I wanted to get a pic. She told me to wrap my arms around her and get close. What a sweet moment! Here's that pic and others.


The Keierleber Family said...

I LOVE the one of all of y'all with Carysse looking at her! :) What a special week y'all had!!!

Lisa said...

Carysse is SO sweet in both the picture where's she looking at Joni and the one giving her a kiss!! How fun to have captured with a photo!! :-)

Stine said...

What a BLESSING! I can only imagine how much meeting Joni meant to you. You've admired her for a long time. I am so happy for you.

~Kim (and family) said...

That is just awesome!

Denita said...

Joni is one of the most beautiful women I've ever seen. Forget the primped and painted runway models, the glitzy Hollywood celebs, the toned and tanned star athletes. She radiates more natural beauty, character, and ironclad faith than an entire town of able-bodied glitterati. What a real treat it must have been to talk with her! :-)