Saturday, April 10, 2010

Update 4/10/10 Day 152

Dear friends,
That practical (sometimes blisteringly so) book of James says this:
"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world."

Some dear old friends visited us this morning from Vermont, a couple of people who put into practice pure religion every day. Pastor Gordy was our pastor a few paces back at DFG, before Pastor Dave the Humble began his diligent watch of love and care. Pastor Gordy and his wife Sue have adopted the little pistol in the picture, Jasmine. She was originally a foster child. They have another little girl who is also a foster child, who for obvious reasons cannot be highlighted on this blog. But take my word for it, she's a sweetheart too! It was great joy to spend a couple of hours with these humble folks who walk out their pilgrim road with an eye toward the dignity of "the least of these". I am honored to know people like them, and our friends Tom and Lucy M., also foster parents who have gone on to adopt 4 children. Gordy and Sue are bloggie friends too! Their church in Vermont has prayed like crazy for Stephen and Hannah. Thank you friends from the maple sugar capital of the world!

It inspires me to spend time with people who put their money where their mouth is on the highway of the life of faith. They make me want to "be a doer of the word, not just a hearer" as Sister Laurie reminds us every week during prayer. Listen, we all fall short. But we can all stretch a little bit. I read this in a book by Mother Theresa this morning:

"It may happen that a mere smile, a short visit, the lighting of a lamp, writing a letter for a blind man, carrying a bucket of charcoal, offering a pair of sandals, reading the newspaper for someone- something small, very small- may, in fact, be our love of God in action."

Of course doing good works out of guilt or obligation profits us nothing. And it certainly doesn't earn us anything! The Great One already did the whole job of redemption Himself. But in conjunction with the true love of God in the heart, the tiniest act of love becomes so much bigger than it seems. I'm challenged by the Gordy and Sue's of this world. Indeed, by the people who have helped us in ten thousand ways over these past five months. I know what it means to have someone simply rake your lawn, or take you for a cup of coffee, or sleep next to your cot at the hospital. I have seen the love of God in action. I continue to see it. And it makes me want to know the Great One all the more. It's a crazy, dark world, full of dazzling pockets of light. You all have been those pockets. Makes me say "wow'.

Also went to the anniversary party of another sweet couple, Ernie and Lorraine the Adorables, married 25 years and beautiful examples of parenthood and grandparenthood. They too are bloggie friends, and have encouraged us greatly during the big storm. I have to pinch myself at times when I look around at all the fine people God has put in the pathway of this family. People are the gold currency of life on earth. That being the case, we are rich indeed.

Time for "North by Northwest" with the original tall, dark and handsome, Cary Grant. We actually watched this movie up to a point before the accident, and the DVD went bad on us half way through. So we've got the Netflix version for the final stretch. Looking forward to snuggling up with that wonderful man of mine, a cup of tea and an apple turnover. Another day closes out, and who the heck knows (right?) what tomorrow will bring. Only the Great One. I think He can handle it. He's the source of the dazzle. Someday, it will be nothing but dazzle...

Your friend on the pilgrim road,


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