Health Matters – Where Church and Life Intersect

Health Matters: Where Church and Life Intersect

Churches are full of life! The life of the pastor, the staff, the volunteer, the family, the children and youth, the young adult and the senior. Where else do you find such diversity of community? After working in the church for over ten years as a Parish Nurse, it was quite obvious to see that the one common denominator that ALL have in common is Health. Good health, poor health, disabled health, mental health. For the majority of us, health plays a major role in forming our outlook on life. If we are healthy – life has no limits, if we are in poor health – limits are an ever present fact of life and another hurtle to jump. At some point we have all experienced poor health and it is that fact that brings common ground into our faith communities.

I would venture to say that communities that are healthy are those where acceptance, validation and true sacrificial caring are practiced. Where all are made to feel heard and loved no matter the status of their health. I have met with many seniors, one on one, to sit and just listen to their heartaches, their story, their concerns. I held their hand as they cried tears of sorrow and loss, I listened as they spoke of not feeling needed anymore, I lifted them in prayer and reiterated their concerns to God with them. Upon leaving, it never failed, I would see a smile radiate their face and a contentment wash over them that indeed they were valued – for I had listened!

Does it not equate then that to be healthy is to be at peace in body, mind and spirit no matter our physical or mental limitations? To help one another achieve this peace is one of the reasons God wants us to be in community.  We need each other!  Let’s find ways to be Healthy!

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Worth the Waiting

In December of 2008, I had the privilege of helping out in my son’s home while awaiting the arrival of my first grandchild.  As the days crept by past the due date, the term ‘waiting’ took on a very present reality.  I could see that the waiting for me was not nearly as hard as it was for my daughter-in-law.  For her, this event was very real, imminent and dear to her heart; not to mention the obvious lack of physical comfort her body was experiencing.  We all wanted to finally ‘see’ this baby!  So waiting became very hard.

But why do we have to wait?

Well, God knows that both mom and baby have to be ready for this event, the results of too early or too late are all too well known.  It made me ponder what I am waiting for in my life; do I hold anything this dearly as to make me so impatient?

I know that special occasions, such as Christmas, create excitement and anticipation, but I fear I must go deeper to the true memory of this event.  It raises the question of whether or not I hold Christ and all He means, dear to my heart.  If so, do I get impatient as I wait for his coming?  How do I spend my time in productive anticipation?  Have I forgotten that He is to return?  Am I ready for His return?

My daughter-in-law could just as well have sat and done nothing throughout her pregnancy, but she kept herself as busy as possible. Busy making preparations for baby’s arrival, walking, talking and rejoicing in anticipation.  Even though the waiting was hard she was as ready as could be.  And oh how the wait was worth it!  The tears of joy and the satisfaction of a wait worthwhile were written all over her face and the faces of all of us who waited with her.

My prayer is that we would all be ready for Christ’s coming.  That we would wait with productive and joyful anticipation.

Are you ready and waiting?

 

Luke 12:35-37 MSG

                “Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, like servants waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him.  It will be good for those servants whose master finds them watching when he comes.  Truly I tell you, he will dress himself to serve, will have them recline at the table and will come and wait on them.”

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