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Monthly Archives: February 2010

Guests can help reorder priorities

We had an unexpected houseguest last night.  A dear friend of ours, who to quote her majesty Queen Elizabeth, has had an “annus horribilius”.  He became a widower quite suddenly in the spring, and then was diagnosed with esophageal cancer not very long after.  While recovering from an intense surgery – they deflated his lung to get at the cancer – he got an “exotic” lung infection and almost died, not from the cancer but from the recovery. 

Yet – here he is, with a clean bill of health from both the infection and the cancer, and is loving life.  Even his sense of humor is returning…

I started that post just before Christmas – wanted to be sure that I worded my reflections just right, and here I sit, writing about the same friend, but this time – he has been totally cured from all ails.  We are attending his funeral on Saturday this week.

Ken and Darlene were among the first friends we made after we were married.  They were in ministry in a neighbouring town, and we loved to have dinners and laughter together.  Ken was a master story-teller.  You could set in off in any topic, and the stories would just flow.  It was a wonderful way to pass an evening together.  Ken = guaranteed laughter, and a bright spot, complete with thoughtful reflection in the darkest of situations.

He had planned to visit us before returning to Nova Scotia after New Year’s, but that never happened.  We had been trying to reach him over the past month, but with no success.  But we thought nothing of it – long stretches of not hearing from Ken was not out of the norm.  Until Sunday- a colleague of his called us just after 4pm that afternoon, and told us the story.  Ken had not been feeling well, went to the doctor and on Thursday past was readmitted to the hospital, and told he had 2 weeks to live.  The cancer he thought he had defeated had returned, and taken over his body. 

Saddened, we began to reflect on our dear friend’s life.  His love for his wife came second, only to his love for His Saviour.  Ken knew and followed Jesus – deeply and passionately.  And he lived his life so that he others would want to meet The One that saved him.

Neither Ken or Darlene had time to say goodbye to those they cared about, yet, those of us who were close to both…knew how they felt.  And we know exactly where they are now.  They are both well and have joined the full-time worshippers in the Throne Room of Heaven.  They have both heard the words they prayed they would “Well done”, from Jesus himself. 

So, here I sit, pondering priorities yet again, because of Ken.  I know that I need to let others know how much I care for them, and am thankful they are in my life.  I need to always take the opportunity to tell my beloved just how much I love him.  I must never take the easy way out and not have the eternal conversations I need to have.  And I must alway strive to be a true reflection of Jesus to others – no matter where I am, or what is going on in my life…

 
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Posted by on February 23, 2010 in Uncategorized

 

Needles – creative or destructive?

I love to do needlework – sewing, cross-stitching, needlepoint,  knitting – they all are active in my pass time lists.  With a small needle pictures can be brought to life, gifts can be made.  The needle brings things together and permanently joins things that were once very separate entities, and their coming together brings the one creating and the one receiving joy.  That’s my favourite part of crafting, is the giving of the final product, and to watch the joy it brings to the recipient.  I love that I am able to pray over each stitch of a gift, and know that a small part of me will be in the home I have intended it for. 

But needles have another side – a destructive side.  It punches holes into the receiving material, ones that are hard to close back up.  If the receiver of a needle is a body part – it’s quite painful too…trust me, I have much experience with this. 

Have you ever thought how you use words is your personal needle?  How we speak to those in our lives can either create something beautiful, or punch holes that are difficult to close?  I know I have been the deliverer of both kinds of words, and don’t like what I see when I have sent out the latter.  I have also been the receiver, and I would much rather be hearing the uplifting words. 

 Our children, whether our own or those in our community, are sensitive to both kinds of words as well.  Watch how tall a child stands when they are being encouraged about something they have done well, or are able to share their thoughts on a topic – and not be told they don’t understand.  See how that same child shrinks when they are “put in their place”.

 2 Timothy 3:16 teaches that ,  “all Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” NIV

During our Children’s Ministry time, we have been encouraging the kids to engage with the Scripture focus that day.  It is the teaching team’s prayer that they will be able to see that God’s Word is alive, and applies to their lives just as much as it applied to the first listeners.   We have imagined what Mary must have been thinking when Gabriel showed up in her house, we have talked about God’s promises being true and trustworthy. We have watched as David wrote is inner-most feelings through the Psalms.   This coming quarter we are following Jesus life, as he calls his disciples and begins his ministry.  We will make jars of clay, expecting miracles in our own lives, we will see how God can provide bounteously – just as He fed 5000 with a couple fish and a few loaves.  And we will learn what it means to have an Easter Faith, all year round.

It is a privilege to watch these young minds have “light bulb moments”, as they engage with the passage of the day.

 Wanting to invite the community to share in our engaging moments, we are excited to be planning an all ages event in March.  “How the West World Was Won” will be an afternoon where families can preview our upcoming KAC Theme (Saddle Ridge Ranch ), and our church family can have an environment that is easy to invite their friends and family members to.  We will be meeting on March 27, between 2 and 3 in the afternoon.  There will a time of music, teaching (kids and adults on their own), and fellowship.  We will be providing much more information in the coming weeks, but be sure to mark your calendar.