As Jenna and I sat on the beach creating a seashell garden and basking in the warmth I said to her “Jenna do you know that God said His thoughts about you outnumber the sand?” She gazed in wonder at all the sand on the beach, in awe that God thought of her that much. But He does. He thinks of His children that much.
We went on playing in the sand and I was watching college students file down the beach, drink in hand, wearing little clothing to the crowd that was in front of Club LaVela. It made me so sad to see them flock to that atmosphere like moths to a flame. I didn’t feel judgmental, only sad. I’ve been there. Thinking that the wild party will bring the fun to life; When it actually only brings misery in the end. It was just like I had seen on MTV when I was younger. I kept thinking “If only they new that God thought about them all the time, God loves them and offers more than that.” I can only imagine how many students leave with more than they went for like an STD or unplanned pregnancy or having been assaulted in some way, plus a load of guilt and shame in tow. In fact a guy on the plane when we left had a huge bruise on his head and a very shiny black eye. He retold his tale of how the bouncer attacked him and he couldn’t remember why.
While that scene was happening, there was another group of 800 students in Panama City. They were there to grow in their relationship with God and go and tell others about Him. I watched numerous conversations happen right around us as we built our seashell garden. Students who had come to understand that God loves them and wants others to know that as well. Where there is darkness the light shines all the brighter. During the week we were there almost 100 people on the beaches asked Christ to be a part of their life. Now that is amazing.
I kept looking at the beautiful face of my sweet daughter and praising God that He thinks precious thoughts of her that outnumber the sand. He created her and knit her little being together. It’s the same for me. It’s the same for you. Do you need that reminder that God thinks of you that way? I know I do often.