It was my privilege once again to attend funerals for two members of my church, St. Andrew’s Presbyterian, Scarborough. One took place on Saturday, April 22nd and the other on Monday, April 24th. The only significant difference in the lives of these two people, besides their gender, was their age. Alfred was in his 102nd year and Debra had just turned sixty.
The love, admiration, and accolades directed to these two wonderful people by their friends and families left the rest of us wishing we had known them better while at the same time conveying the feeling that we knew them well.
Debra had been an operating room nurse, well known for her caring ways, sunny smile and warm hugs. She was also known for her tenacity in dealing with health problems, and for continuing to love unconditionally in the face of all adversity.
Alfred, had been active all of his life and even at the age of one-hundred-and-one, was still doing aerobics, walking, and standing tall and straight. Our Pastor remarked that when Alfred walked down the aisle to his familiar pew, everyone else automatically straightened their posture.
As end-of-life celebrations can be, these two were so inspirational that one could not help but offer congratulations along with condolences to the loved ones left behind; congratulations for having shared in the lives of these two remarkable people.
Condolences to congratulations…it was so fitting to offer both.
“His name is Jason. He is fifteen years old and has been diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor.”
This came through our prayer chain last night.
He is someone’s son, grandson, brother, nephew, friend…someone who needs our prayers. Jason.
I don’t know this boy, nor do most of you, but I do know that most of the people I do know, and the many bloggers I have met in the past few months are empathetic, compassionate, praying people.
His name is Jason. Please pray for him.
Thank you for reading and caring. Thank you for praying. His name is Jason.
It seems yesterday’s blog, A Prayer for Energy, was a timely one. Three people that I know of found it helpful and I got the best hug from a church friend.
What a hug, I can still feel it! Thank you, Christine, it was very energizing.
It is very rewarding when the written word touches a chord somewhere, and people voice their appreciation.
I truly appreciate that.
I go to church, not only to worship God, but to hear him speak to me through our Pastor or a guest speaker. What I have heard over the years has been food, not only for my soul, but for My Precious Life. “Faith Comes Through Hearing” are not empty words. I really enjoyed writing this chapter.
Chapter Thirty-Five – Listen Up
Pastor Duncan told us in one of his sermons–and I quote— “What Jesus invites us to share is a lifetime of learning, a lifetime of growing, a lifetime of being changed by Him and through Him. With Him we know that nothing is impossible! God gives us opportunities to share the story of our faith, and we can’t neglect this responsibility.” End of quote.
This is my opportunity to share the many ways God has spoken to me over the years, and in the telling, maybe you’ll remember ways he has spoken to you, too.
One Sunday, a guest Pastor at our church mentioned going for a walk to ease a burdened mind. As he walked, he noticed an extremely white piece of wood on his path, and a scripture came to mind: “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.” (Isaiah, 1:18)
I have no idea what that had to do with his spirits that day, but the fact that God spoke to him, through a piece of white wood on a sidewalk, reassured me of the things I am going to share with you…..
“He who has an ear, let him hear.” (Revelation 13:9). In other words–listen up!
Tomorrow – You’re Too Pretty to Smoke – A Lesson in Empathy
There are times we walk around looking at the ground, totally unaware of what’s going on around us. There are also times when what’s going on around us makes us think we should just mind our own business, and not get involved in whatever the occurrence might be. And then there are times when getting involved is just the right thing to do.
Chapter Thirty-One – Minding God’s Own Business
I visited Jerry daily in hospital when he was admitted on July 31, 2004, with Parkinson’s disease, and the onset of Alzheimer’s. As I wheeled him to the TV room one evening after dinner, I noticed an old gentleman in a geri-chair in the hallway. He was very agitated, and trying desperately to climb out of the chair. It had a high back, widening wing-like at the top. A wrap-around tray prevented him from getting out. His son tried to spoon-feed him but he refused to eat, shouting that he wanted to go home. Normally, I would have passed by, minding my own business, but I was drawn to these two. I stopped and told the younger man that Jerry had recently gone through that phase, and assured him it does get better. I then spoke to his father.
“Hi there. How are you tonight?”
“You look pretty good,” he said, forgetting his agitation for the moment.
“You look pretty good yourself,” I answered, “and I love your chair. It looks like it has wings.”
“Yes, and I’ll fly away.” he said…….
“I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.” (Matthew 28:40)
Tomorrow – The Final Breath – A Lesson in Dying
This is a short chapter which speaks of deep sadness.
Chapter Eight – The Invitation to Lunch
Julia and Margaret talked to each other as they tidied up the kitchen, while Maryanne and I sat gazing at our surroundings, wondering why we were there. The big girls didn’t include us in their conversation, and seemed content just to have us with them. Julia’s wistful smile appeared whenever she looked at me, and she constantly played with my hair.
On the way back to school, Julia held my hand and told me about her little sister. Heather was six years old when she was hit by a car last year. She had long brown hair and hazel eyes……..
Tomorrow’s chapter, The Black Sheep, deals with a lesson in feeling different.