One week ago today I was spending my second day in the hospital seeking answers for my shortness of breath and the pain in my side.
This morning I joined the members and friends of First Baptist of Kennett Square for a time of worship and prayer. It was a great day. As a family we wrestled with questions such as why? We fought for the words to say when there really is not much to say that feels right or seems to make anything better. It was good to be together and Nancy, Rayann and I felt loved and supported in a big way. As our focus turned from ourselves to the worship of God it was clear the Spirit of God was in our midst and our spirits were lifted.
When it came time for the sermon I shared some observations and thoughts about the past week and how I had seen God at work in our lives even in the midst of this diagnosis and the journey which lies ahead. We talked about what the future holds for FBC and how the church is not the pastor…the church is a community of people come together to grow in their relationship with God and share of God’s grace with the world around it. It was a good day…not an easy day…but a good day.
During the sermon I shared another one of those “God sightings”, I will share it again here. I had not been at FBC for more than a few months when someone who has come to be a dear friend came into my office. They had all kinds of papers and information about the Penn Medicine system. She said, “You need to find yourself a good doctor. These are the people I use and here is why I think they are so good.” Well, I was busy, had lots of things I wanted to get done and to be honest the last thing on my mind was setting up any doctors. She stayed in my office for about thirty minutes talking about the many values of the Penn Medicine system. I remember thinking, “Why does this matter, I am as healthy as an ox…it does not matter which doctor I go to.” I gave Nancy all the paperwork and told her if she thought it looked good this might be a good place for us to go. Nancy took over, set us up and I did not give it another thought. Well, fast forward close to two years and all of a sudden it matters! All of my doctors are within the same system, my hospital doctors are within the same system. One of the biggest pieces is that I will be able to do all my chemotherapy right here in Kennett Square as part of the Penn Medicine system. I praise God for my friend who took it upon herself to come and help me get focused on what was important and has now become essential. She listened to the prompting of God to go speak to her pastor…in a way that may have seemed like she was “intruding or telling him what to do”.
I wonder how many times God invites us to speak words of direction or advice to the people in our lives but we stop short because we are afraid they may be offended or “not have the time for us”? I wonder how many times I have pushed aside the Spirit’s voice for fear of how I would be received by the one I was invited to speak with?
May we hear clearly the invitation of the Spirit and may we move boldly towards it.
God is Good All the Time; All the Time God is Good