We have had some fun holidays this year. But - we will ALWAYS ALWAYS miss Les. Seems like holiday church services are what hit me. He was always involved in some way - singing, praying, speaking, serving communion........ Those are such precious memories for me.
We had a full table on Thanksgiving. That's a bit unusual for us since we don't have a lot of extended family here. This year was an exception and it was great! My Alaska nephew Mark, his wife Sarah and their son Levi asked awhile back if they could visit over Thanksgiving. Um, yes please!! After they decided to visit, my Iowa sister (Mark's mother) also decided to visit. Thankfully, it was my year with my kids AND my Wenatchee brother's year to be here at Thanksgiving. We ended up with 23 at my table! So fun.
|Seattle shenanigans - girls only, no boys allowed!!|
Again, we had a full table. We had Wiersma's, Kooistra's, and some guests. It was a busy day and I was pooped at the end of the day. My heart is full tho, and I'm so thankful.
On the eve of Christmas Eve, I visited my friend Steve (and his wife Glenda!) who was recently diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. We had a great visit - I can't wait to go back! That same day I visited my friend Tom, who has ALS. He was a good friend of Les'. When we first met Tom about 3 years ago, he was walking and talking. He was still walking and talking (although both were much slower) at Les' funeral. Now Tom is in a care center and cannot move any of his limbs. He cannot talk. He uses his eye gaze device to spell out sentences. (Weird thing - the eye gaze device SOUNDS just like Les' - brings back some memories!!!) Tom is handling this disease very gracefully. He and his wife Jen have two beautiful little girls, they are now 5 and 7. Spending time with Tom is good for my soul. It brings back many memories (feeding tube, suction machine.....) but it puts my world back in to perspective. My devotional this morning worded it so well (from Jesus Always): "My loved ones often fail to enjoy the riches I provide because of an ungrateful attitude. Instead of rejoicing in all that they have, they long for what they do not have. As a result, they become discontented." And our sermon this last Sunday was on JOY. Joy is not a giddy, excited feeling. True joy is a "persistent gratitude of the soul - it staves off despair" The good news of a Savior who is Christ the Lord is the source of this joy. AMEN AND AMEN.
I will chose thankfulness and I will chose JOY. Jesus is the reason for this season.