Wednesday - Slow down the pace...just a bit.
I had typed this up earlier and Blogger ate it, hope my memory serves me well. There is a slight rain and the temperature is mild, feels very good to me.
We don't have an agenda today, Pastor and Alice need to go to the church and work. While they are there, we tidy up the house a bit and do a little laundry.
We met with the Pastor, Alice, and several people from the church for lunch at Taco Time, a franchise operated by a family from the congregation. The food is yummy and all ingredients fresh. Here we met Rita who answers the phones while Pastor and his staff are in meetings each Wednesday. I have already met Ruth, the children's minister and terrific scrapbooker, and Diane, Pastor's administrative assistant and talented computer repair technician.
In the evening we have dinner at the church...this was most impressive. Every Wednesday, a few of the ladies cook up a nutritious meal, complete with dessert for $5.00. How convenient is that? We dined in the company of Barbara, a lady of seventy that is raising two great-grandchildren, Jesus please bless her. And we meet Cheryl and her husband, Cheryl is a stay at home grandma, her husband works in the timber business. Cheryl has a ministry called "Apples of Gold", here they teach the ladies what I would categorize as home economics, i.e., cooking and household tips. The ministry encourages women, especially young ladies (I would imagine) with household issues and duties. They also have recipe sharing, which really appeals to me. If I lived there, I would be attending this class, the fellowship/relationship opportunity here is exponential.
At 7:00 we are off to Bible Study. I am a little anxious, after all we are new and haven't been to Bible Study for a long time. Our schedule just doesn't allow it, so I am not only anxious, but also excited because Mark and I have an opportunity to study together. Here we meet Ann, she has five children. She and her husband both come from very large families, if I remember correctly she has eleven brothers and sisters, her husband has twelve. We meet Louise, her eyes sparkle with life. We also meet Rev. Thurman and his wife. I detect a gentle and loving spirit from them.
Class was led by Mac. Mac taught from 1 John, chapter 1. This passage tells us about Jesus and who he is...and it also tells us about redemption. Interesting thing is, Mac shared with us...a personal situation that had occurred in his life and how he needs and loves his church family. Here he is so transparent, it makes it effortless to relate to him and to draw closer. Mac touched my heart and I learned we both have empathy toward people that find themselves in dire straits due to bad choices. And it is here, the grace of Jesus comes through and our Redeemer gives His mercy.
At class we also met Robert, he is wonderful. I saw a childlike love and reverence for Jesus shine through Robert. He had his purple cross and his baseball cap with "MFJ" on the front, which he explains to me means "My Friend Jesus".
Mac talked about things he and Robert had done through out the week and it is during this conversation that I realize, Mac and Robert are friends and that Mac is there for Robert. He looks out for him, makes sure he can get around, is there if he has a need. Mac loves Robert...and Robert loves Mac. The dynamics of this friendship touched my heart and I pray they both have a long lasting deep friendship serving the Lord all their days.
This post is post Wednesday and I am back home. Since my return I have been listening to Pastor's series called "Home Improvement". This series directly addresses what is up with us...meaning you and me. What are the issues we deal with continually that concerns us...separates us from God? Pastor teaches us the scriptural responses to these real and pressing problems. Earlier in this post I said my schedule didn't allow for Bible Study with Mark...and it doesn't. BUT, that does not mean I can't reclaim my MARGIN and get into one myself. I have resolved to do just that!
It refreshed my soul to spend time with God loving people and I feel renewed, ready to pick up the cross and press through, just like Mac. Thank you brother for your testimony and keep on being transparent, your testimony is powerful and encouraging, it exemplifies the grace and mercy God has for us....just for the asking.