Wednesday, January 25, 2012

connecting the dots

dot A

They look more like models on the cover of a family magazine than missionaries heading to South Africa.

Richard and Megan, with their four young sons, entered our lives this past weekend. It took about five minutes to catch their passion and love for the people of Lesotho, Africa. With the use of aviation, they will be able to bring hope and help to this poverty ridden country. 

Lesotho is a small country of 2 million people crippled by famine and HIV/AIDS (1/3 of the country is HIV). Richard will be flying medical help and food in to the mountainous regions. Their family will be directly involved in the Africans' lives sharing the Good News of Jesus with those who have never heard His name.

dot B

My background is missions directed. From parents who were missions minded to my own pursuit of a missions degree to my added years of working in a mission agency, my life has circled around missions. My Plan A was to be a missionary on "foreign soil." God had other plans. (I have long ago accepted His plan as the best. But in the early years, I struggled with doubts.)

dot C

You know those special moments of clarity that come to you? The curtain is pulled back and you view the panoramic view as God must see it.

As is our ritual from the 1 or 10 day stay of our B&B guests, I walked the missionaries out with all their luggage to see them off. The warm breakfast (simple Baked Oatmeal Pie) was followed by warm hugs along with a bag full of chocolate chip cookies for the kids (thanks Mom!).

As I tearfully watched Richard and Megan with their sons pull out of the driveway, that moment of clarity arrived. I may not have ended up on foreign soil, but I have the honor and privilege of serving those who are. Serving the Servants.

The dot is connected.

A little part of my heart will be flying in a Cessna 206 Turbo airplane over the mountain regions of South Africa.

Meanwhile... I have my own mountain to climb.

Dippity doo dots day,

I'm working on my next blog post which will be about another mountain-climbing journey. Hint: A 4-letter word that starts with a "D" and ends with a "T". 

Friday, January 20, 2012

"ruff" introduction

This past Sunday, as is our usual practice, Chuck and I arrived to church a bit early to reserve our favorite seats. Chuck busied himself making his morning tea and after placing our Bibles down, I noticed a man across the aisle who has been attending for a few weeks.

With a large church, it is hard to know when someone is new or just changing service times. I decided to investigate.

This gentleman is hard to overlook. His companion is a large beautiful German Shepherd, a rescue dog. 

I wandered over and introduced myself and asked him about his dog. After chatting for several minutes, I mentioned we were somewhat new to the church. Graham (not his real name) went on to say that he was a newcomer too and just in December had been walked through the Bible experience. After several sentences, it dawned on me what he was trying to say.

He met Jesus! He asked the Lord to be his Savior!

He went on to share that he had been an agnostic (one who is skeptical about the existence of God) most all of his life.

I gave him a pat on the back and a handshake with a joyous welcome into the Family of God. I wanted him to meet my husband so I introduced Chuck to him too. The two of them visited for a few more minutes.

Service began. We had a new friend named "Graham". We witnessed the joy of someone after many years of rejecting the gospel come to know the truth and peace of Jesus Christ.

So hows about it?

In a  world full of people who couldn't care less,
be someone who couldn't care more.

This I write as a reminder to myself as much as to encourage anyone else.

What can our small gestures mean in another's life?

Graham left that service knowing two more names in a sea of people. I hope he caught the joy and delight on our faces as he shared his news. Perhaps he went home thinking about two new friends he made. . .  

It didn't cost a dime. Just a little bravery.
It didn't take much time. A few small minutes.

A connection was made by being friendly. Note to self. Do this more often.

Yes, at church. But how about the bank line? Sharing in a clothes rack aisle? Waiting with a crowd for restaurant seating? In the waiting rooms . . .

In a world that is hurting and often scary, people can always use some good cheer. Yours and mine!

This Sunday we introduce Rich and Megan and their four young boys to our B&B. We are excited to meet these Aviation Missionaries who are heading to Africa. Another opportunity to share good cheer. This time with soft beds!

When we walk in church this Sunday, we have a new friend to greet. Hiya Graham!

Okey dokey. Gotta run. Or walk - my 30 minutes.

Glad to share the flight with you.


If you have a "cheer shared" story, I'd love to hear it. I am humbled by your email comments and always try to reply. Sparrows blessings!  

Thursday, January 5, 2012

behind closed doors

Alas, I give you the last of my 3-part series through our newly constructed Master Bedroom Suite. Thank you for dropping in for the first chat of 2012!
door #1 

Our closet. Or I like to call it our dressing room. One dream I had was to eliminate all dressers, forever.

Hubster's side. Could I not have found a better front shirt for this photo shoot? Chirp - real life. And how did the pink hanger make its way into my all white hanger hang-out?

Old science lab drawers repurposed. Way to go honey!

Moving around to my side.

Old Faithful

door #2

Size is not recommended for ironing sheets (smile) or tablecloths . . .  Lovin' it!

door #3
This little green door could be titled the "Door of Adjustment."
After ten wonderful years in my mission office job, at my own choosing, I am out of work. Or away from work. I have entered a new season of life. At the age of 53, I find myself in the solitude of my home for really the first time. Prior to my office work I was a full-time stay-at-home mom with three children. (Prior to that I was a skinny college girl who could eat unlimited amounts of M & M's and pizza!)
This new season, it takes some adjusting.
definition: to put in order, to settle or bring to a satisfactory state
I have a new door in my life and I'm not sure what is behind it. I've found that often the hardest part of moving to the next room is turning the handle and stepping forward. I'm also pretty sure if we don't use the doors that are given to us - both opened and closed - we will remain in the same room, moving around in the same space and place. 
Perhaps you have a new door of opportunity or adjustment in your life too. 
Smack dab in the middle of the word adjusting is just. As in:
Just go with it.
Just in time.
Just sayin'.
I don't know who Al Davis is but this quote belongs to him. "You don't adjust. You just dominate."
How's that for some New Years optimism? Sparrow smiles.
There is better encouragement with life-giving significance found in Psalm 32:10. "The Lord's unfailing love surrounds the man who trusts in Him."
I'm willing to share that optimism with you. With the Lord's help, we step out confidently into 2012.
I hear a door creaking open. How about you?
I try to reply to every email: