Today we received another one. Marissa's favorite animal was a mouse...and all the variations of a mouse/rat/kangaroo rat. I remember one Sabbath watching her while we were singing a hymn and she had her mouse, Templeton, singing along. The head was bobbing to the music and at the long-drawn-out chords Templeton would lift his head up and shake his nose as if he was belting out the notes. It's a precious memory.
When my dad asked if there was anything he could do for the students I remembered when Southern had it's fire. One student died, Kelly Weimer. At the memorial service each of the girls who were in the dorm fire were given a stuffed animal with a tag that had Kelly's name, and a Bible verse. Having something tangible was really important and help in the grieving and healing for me.
So I suggested ordering stuffed mice, in honor of Marissa's favorite animal. My dad said it sounded perfect, a Marissa Mouse.
I had tied onto each mouse a tag with green yarn and the tag said: Marissa Mouse. Bible Promise: Philippians 4:13, "I can do all things through Him who gives me strength."
Before I could explain what the verse meant Ben said, "That's the exact mouse Marissa had!" Juliana had her hand raised and said, "Yes, she got it in Washington, D.C."
I don't believe it is a coincidence. I believe that Jesus gives us little and big mercies and pieces of His grace all the time. Today I saw it in a stuffed mouse. It was a Jesus moment and may His Name be praised for the tender way in which He loves His children.
After that I told them that Marissa had picked out that Bible promise in our class and that with Christ we can do all things, and He will help us in our sad and happy times. He will be our strength.
Then we passed them out to each of the students.
Those mice went everywhere today. Lunch, spelling tests, recess, (I even think the bathroom if I'd let them!), soccer...everything and everywhere. And I suspect they will be tucked into bed with quite a few children tonight.
Juliana told me that when she hugged the mouse it was like being able to hug Marissa.
Some mice were very adventurous and bounced balls and rode in children's hands as they ran madly around the soccer field.
Others were content to sit on desks or be played with in pockets and hands. I pray that the students feel Jesus' love when they see those mice, and have something they can hold, play with, cry with, sleep with, and remember that we eagerly await Jesus' return.