As I write this, I am getting reconnected to the “drugs” after the weekend. Funny how much we appreciate the simple blessings like a couple of days without tubes and machines. Yesterday was Nancy and my 43rd wedding anniversary. Who knew we would last this long, or travel so far… and with so many things to celebrate. I can only begin to imagine what he can do with us after our “mid course correction”.
We went to church and were encouraged as always by the message and the music. Otherwise, we were in our tiny new “home” trying to stuff me with strange foods. We only reached about 1000 calories, but I was able to arise this morning at the same weight from yesterday (actually, I gained a half pound), so we are grateful. Who knew (our Lord even has a sense of humor) that I would be spending my days, including anniversary, looking for “more calories” rather than avoiding them as before….and that my sweet wife would be saying all day…”you need to eat more!” If it wasn’t so serious, it would be hilarious!
We got roses from the kids and some nice notes from the few who were aware of the date. We sure will never forget this milestone in our life. Nancy has been such a hero in this whole chapter. She is a rock of faith and optimism, and she is alert and researching day and night for any ideas on my care. She is eating the weird stuff that I eat right along with me….but then again…she has always been a “weird and healthy” eater. This better work!… because I would hate to think I ate that ground up Brussels Sprouts and apples if it isn’t helping. I am a very lucky man to have such a wife. I sure would have never wished for her to have to become “Nurse Nancy” once again after all the years at hospitals etc with Eric. God has once again prepared her superbly “for just such a time as this”, Esther 4:14. If Nancy had lived in Biblical times, there may have been a “book of Nancy” (just my opinion). I realize that most of you have long been aware of her strength and passion and faith…and humor…and expectation ( shall I continue?)…I doubt that many really know what a woman of God she is. Anyway…I guess the anniversary sentiments are getting to me…but she deserves a huge “hi five” for her faithfulness and love over so many years and so many life chapters…. and tolerating so many of my weaknesses and goof-ups. May God now grant us the privilege of celebrating 75 years together in his service. I can already see that she will like the new Jim 2.0 better. 😉
We count it also a blessing that God has chosen to do a “new work in us”, even throughout this attack of the enemy. Our God is already victorious and we are growing and discovering so many wonderful things about his Word and his promises, and his faithful, available power and peace. All those things we “know of”, intellectually, come to life as we suddenly face the realities and uncertainties in the real life laboratory. Faith requires more than the “head” acknowledging the possibility of recovery/healing… It is the “heart” and spirit knowing and trusting and resting…even where there is no real evidence that what we want is coming. We know what God wants, and what is available to us in him is always possible …and thus we have hope….and we are already conquerors.
Medical doctors are quite good at reminding us of all the ways it can go wrong, or preparing their patients for the worst possibilities. Can we even imagine using such a strategy as we lead others in life and business? No chance that this will be added to our core principles. We like being merchants of hope. I am today thankful anyway as the medical people are dedicated, and do what they do well. They play a great role. So much disease….so many in need. I have met wonderful “real people”, daily, that try their best to stay positive and caring while doing their professional thing. I say they are “successful”. They are to be admired. I sure hope that each of you, my dear friends, is beginning to understand what a “successful life” looks like from the eyes of our Lord and creator. He has given each of us a perfect “instruction book” in the Bible. Abundance is fine, (poverty overrated), and we can bless many….as long as we keep God first. Ya with me on that? Maybe more later in a different posting.
We are privileged to lead a diverse group of people around the world….many of whom are of different faiths (or no faith yet), and each of them is highly valued by God… and us!!….and I simply offer what I believe….. as this is part of this personal journey. I pray you each are comforted in these thoughts. I sure am comforted and uplifted by YOU! You all keep claiming victory with us, and keep trusting the Lord with us. Keep living your lives in joy and laughter and great expectations. Keep dreaming. Discover your God-given greatness and value. We are so proud of you, our family. So many languages and so many cultures, and yet we are one big wonderful family. And what a huge and passionate and loving family we are. Your heart-felt caring and loving comments are still overwhelming me! I read every day to see who I might hear from …or from where. As I listen to the sweet encouragement, mixed with all the reminders of how many of us in this family are bonded by something so much greater than any material success could bring, I am inspired by the passions and values you all share in the unselfish service to others and hopefully for God’s glory not ours. Together we love others, serve others, honor God, and then expect and receive a reward ,both here in our achievements and prosperity, but also, eternally. What a wonderful concept to sell out to.
We all share this love and desire to be a winner in Gods eyes….and seeing so many of you show powerful faith and going beyond our example in what you are overcoming and defeating continues to inspire us to become better leaders for you. You are helping us.
Our combined global family’s commitment to these values and this unity… for the good of others. Together, using our beautiful business to bless/equip others and show them their potential…and even expose them to the Gospel if they are ready and willing to ask. If not….we love them and serve them all anyway as Christ teaches us so clearly.
Here below is another encouraging scripture I received more than once in the guest book …take it into your hearts and ponder it. God loves us. He is not distant or angry or frustrated….he loves and forgives and wants us to know him personally. He “stands at the door and knocks”; Revelation 3:20. So he waits for us, but he is ready to provide. Not when we are perfect…just as we are, and he does the rest. Pretty amazing huh? We all have so much to celebrate.
Psalm 91:14-16 – Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name. He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honor him. With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.