November 15, 2009

He Whispered In My Ear

(Linda Meikle photo)
Another Saturday at the Worthington Seventh-day Adventist Church. Guess what? Bonnie was watching for me in the foyer! She read on my blog that I might be attending, so she was waiting. I hope she doesn't mind me mentioning her name here but if ever there was an angel on a mission, she is heaven-sent. Thank-you Bonnie for being so attune.
Then, of course, my friend who isn't an Adventist arrived and started greetings and hugs like a long-lost sister! They just love here there. I suspect most don't even think about her not being a 'member'. Perhaps it's because she doesn't worry about it either!
Out of the corner of my eye, I recognised my new 'Internet" friend who had invited me to her home for dinner - sight unseen. "V" found my blog quite by accident last week, and when she realized that I might be going back to her church, she wrote and invited me to her home after church.
She sent pictures and MapQuest directions. She told me about all the nurses in her family and assured me that I'd have good food and excellent company. She was absolutely right. I enjoyed her delicious home-cooked food and mouth-watering dessert. The dinner conversation with all the young adults and nurses was thought-provoking and interesting!

Remember the real reason for this Sabbath visit was the annual men's chorus performance (pictured). Right here I will apologize for not knowing the proper details of this group. I gave my church bulletin to someone and forgot to get another one before I left. Suffice it to say, the chorus is not the usual church's choir (which I hear is also quite wonderful!). Many in this chorus are visiting performers, some of whom conduct their own choirs. The conductor is the regular Worthington SDA Church's music director. (I hope I'm giving them the proper respectful titles.) The musical program was inspiring, moving and memorable. Absolutely worth every moving second!

The sermon held my attention too. The pastor spoke about gratitude. Most of us are always asking God for things, but many forget the importance of being thankful. He compared the use of gratitude much like yeast in making a loaf of bread. One doesn't realize its value until it's left out of the recipe!

He shared the following poem that I later found in the Internet.

Count Your Blessings!

Count your blessings instead of your crosses
Count your gains instead of your losses.
Count your joys instead of your woes.
Count your friends instead of your foes.
Count your smiles instead of your tears.
Count your courage instead of your fears.
Count your full years instead of your lean.
Count your kind deeds instead of your mean.
Count your health instead of your wealth.
Love your neighbor as much as yourself.
~Author Unknown

"Gratitude is the only way to see our prayers answered," the pastor said. He also pointed out that a thankful heart is like a magnet that finds the unseen blessings.
Gratitude is like taking inventory of answered prayers. "We're constantly putting in our orders to God, but how often do we take inventory (of answered prayers)?" he asked.

But, the strangest and most compelling part of the day was the whisper in my ear.

I had stayed in the foyer a little too long and had to find my friend(s) in the sanctuary when it came time for the service to start. Just as I started walking slowly down the center isle looking for the back of my friend's head, the members were asked to stand up and welcome the visitors. Because everybody was standing up anyway and greeting each other, I decided to walk to the front and around to the side isle where my friends were beckoning me to come. As I passed the elder at the pulpit, he reached out his hand and came down the steps to welcome me.

Then he leaned over and whispered, "Thank-you for coming back."

I haven't the slightest idea how he knew who I was, or my story for being there. I still don't. But, I'll never forget that whisper in my ear!
Finally, when I arrived home in late afternoon, hubby asked if I'd had a good time. Then he stopped and looked at me.
"It's good to see you smiling again," he said as he gave me a happy little kiss.

Take Care on the Journey,


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