Hannah is definitely her mother’s daughter. Part of this is the physical resemblance, which actually goes at least four generations – from Hannah, to Joanna, to Joanna’s mom, to her mother. And part of this is their spirit of adventure and service.
|Hannah & Sender at the top of Table Rock (October 2010)
Hannah loves being outside. She’s like a duck, undisturbed by cold and wet weather if she has company. One recent Christmas, she and a neighborhood friend were outside on Christmas afternoon, zooming around on their inline skates. This was in drizzling 40-degree weather.
And she loves doing service projects (which you may not easily recognize if you notice the continual messiness of her room). But she was the hardest working kid I saw at HOG Day
two years ago. For several hours, she cleared brush and branches, even using a machete at times (only a couple of close calls with her and another girl). Even when other kids and adults were wrapping up and resting, she kept loading branches onto a trailer. She loved it.
She is excited to paint walls, whether at HOG Day last year (she only painted on my head, by accident, one time) or in our new home Allendale
. And she does a pretty good job.
But the biggest type of service and mission is one that she has repeatedly talked to us about over the past few years. It came up again recently as we were talking about God’s plan for our lives.
Hannah wants to travel overseas, from wanting to see the canals of Venice to a desire to serve as a missionary, perhaps in China.
Maybe this started in her from when she was only a toddler and I went to Nicaragua for 8 days. And maybe it grew even more when she had to wrestle with me going to Kenya
. And I’m sure this is inherited from Joanna, who has the same spirit of adventure, including living in England for almost a half a year. Joanna also went to on a Grace Church-sponsored mission trip last spring, suffering in the Bahamas (no, really, it was hard work, and the 2 zillion
bug bites she got is not what you hear about from your travel agent).
But whatever example God let us be, I know that her spirit to travel and serve on a mission trip is ultimately about the Holy Spirit guiding her, and giving her gifts and personalities that are to be used to bless others.
|God will use her, and I will cheer her on.
This passion in her has been encouraging for me to see, as I’ve prayed for her since she was a baby that she would be “a giver of grace” (“Hannah” is the Hebrew word for “grace”). God is at work in her heart, to help her be a instrument of the gospel.
So, now I am trying to figure out how to get her out of the country. Since we know that God speaks to her
, my role is to help her discern how God wants to be glorified in her life.
I’m glad that I can trust God to direct her life, because I just found out that her latest dream is to have a pizza restaurant. Well, maybe part of her training will be that trip to Venice.