Monday, December 21, 2009

I Hate Cancer II

There comes time when you just sit back and although you have great belief in a God, you question why some things must happen. Like war, famine, cancer. I am aching because I am going to lose a good friend. Not a buddy … but a wonderful gal I enjoyed having conversations with. Cheryl is a vocal advocate for people with disabilities. She and I do not always agree on how the State should fund things, but we could have honest, heartfelt disagreements and walk away from our discussions appreciating our differences. The State of Indiana is going to miss Cheryl Waltermire, and that’s sad because people with disabilities needs more Cheryls.
Tomorrow I am meeting with Cheryl one last time here on earth. Her request. Her phone call earlier this evening blew me out of the water. I hardly recognized her voice. We last meet for lunch a couple of months ago, she used a walker, but she was so positive. She didn’t lie to me about her status … but obviously she wasn’t totally honest with me either. I’ve mentioned it before … I hate Cancer. There is no purpose, it does no good, it only leads to pain, suffering, and much too often – death.
So today I ache for a friendship that is unique. Rarely did Cheryl and I agree, but we were always able to accept our differences and be better people because of it. Cheryl had a quote that summed up her attitude, her vision: "We don't need to be right, we just need to do the right thing". It’s rare to find a friendship where you find ‘your sister’, ‘your sole mate’, ‘your equal’. But maybe even more rare to find someone that is your polar opposite yet ends up being an honest friend.

Oh Cheryl …. I am going to miss our battles. I can promise no tears tomorrow as we meet, because of my prayer warriors. But know that they will flow, not only for my loss but for the loss of those you so vocally advocated for.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

2009 Christmas Letter

Dear One,

Last year when it came time to sit down and think of the ‘word’ to describe my year … I struggled. In fact, at this moment – I can’t even recall the word I went with last year. That makes me sad, because for the most part, each year was cumulated by the word I shared with you. That bothers me now. Usually I knew what ‘word’ I would be using long before I thought about writing my Christmas letter … well, sit back, and take a break – because I’m back! I know exactly what word to use for 2009!

A couple of weeks ago we had a guest minister. He spoke that as we search for a new Pastor, to find one with passion; someone that will inspire us, someone that will challenge us, someone that will encourage us. Passion, it had been missing from my life. Oh, but not this year! So this year my word is “Passion”. Yes, “Passion”. It came back into my life this year.

The first time I felt passionate had to be sometime in February when I heard I was going to be a Grandma. How excited I was, and how joyous I was to share the news. Do you remember how you found out? Some of you by my ’25 Random List’ I emailed you, some at church in mid-February, and some at Tumbleweeds on a Monday night. A few knew before … but very few.

Then when Collin Clay (named after my Dad – which really touched me!) Patterson entered this world on August 27th. I was so in awe of God’s amazing work, and passionately in love with Collin. ”For I am fearfully and wonderfully made” Psalms 139: 14 (One of my favorite chapters in the entire Bible). I looked into Collin’s face and became aware of a whole new, different type of love. He has added a new dimension to my life, and I am so thankful for this gift.

But I think the one thing that probably has changed me; made me more passionate … is getting back into the work I have done for over twenty years … social service. Three years ago I was so burnt out from working 65 – 80 weeks (on salary no less!) that I had no choice but to walk away from it. But about 6 – 8 weeks ago (depending on when I actually finish this!) I went back in the field … this time with StoneBelt. I enjoy going to work. I missed working with the disabled population, and now that I am back at it … realized this is what inspires me, this is what challenges me, this is what I do best – encouraging others. This is where my talent lies; this is where my heart is … this is where my Passion is. I appreciate being away from the work, for I did need the break. But this is where God wants me to be, this I have no doubt. I am not taking on the responsibilities I had before, for that was too much for someone who enjoys being with family and friends as often as I do … but I was good at what I did, and happy to be back at it!

I have been blessed with so much this past year. I love the family God has placed me in, and I love the friends He has given me to enjoy. I want each of you to know that my life is enriched because of you, and I passionately give thanks for each of you.

My wish for you this coming year? That you find something to be passionate about; something that inspires you, something that challenges you, something that encourages you. This Season, as we celebrate the birth of our Savior, may you find a passion for Christ and understand the depths and wonders of His love.

Christmas Joy,


Tuesday, December 1, 2009

1 Corinthians 15:10

Didn't write this .. but love it!

By Grace Alone*

I am forgiven. I have joy. I love others. I smile in the rain. I am confident. I live. I laugh. I climb mountains. I forgive. I hope. I am happy. I give. I pray through. I am strong. I am kind. I believe. I am a friend. I have peace. I care. I breathe. I stand for truth. I dream. I have a purpose. I approach God. I have a pure heart. I am courageous. I see beauty. I am beautiful. I celebrate. I am thankful. I am content. I soar. I am safe. I am saved. I am blessed. I am a blessing. I am free. I am wise. I have a dwelling place. I am merciful. I am what I am. I am sure. I am enthusiastic. I praise. I have no limits. I press on. I find rest. I move forward. By the grace of God I am what I am.
I Corinthians 15:10