Saturday, August 18, 2012

A dear voice from childhood

6:48 p.m. Today's project was to minister to a longtime friend whom Steve and I met, with her husband, at a Home Fellowship about 5 years ago. She was eager to try the new skincare line, and at our appointment, she had the pampering and encouragement, as well as the prayer, that she needed! As James 5:16 says,

Pray for one another, that you may be healed.

This morning started of in an exciting way. Shortly after I got dressed, the Lord prompted me to check my ell's voicemail. Lo and behold, there were messages from my Aunts Kathleen from Kansas City, MO; and Sadie and Gale from St. Louis, MO, my dad's sisters, all trying to track Daddy down! They had each called him at his home number on his birthday, but as already reported, that's the day he decided to drive back to his house in Redlands without letting even us locals know, or even answering his home phone while he was there! 

Aunt Kathleen and I had a wonderful conversation. She mentioned that, along with health and nutrition magazines, Daddy had sent her a copy of my book Galatians: An Exploration of Faith & Freedom, and that she'd read and enjoyed it.She told me that Sadie had used the Internet and my address to find Daddy somehow, and they had talked yesterday. Kathleen assumed that he was spending the night with us for his birthday. So I told her about Daddy being in assisted living, how we found him almost dead; his hospital stay; and that his doctor says he can no longer live alone, due to his bladder cancer. [The cancer was removed for the most part, but is now spreading because Daddy refused further exploratory surgical treatment, which decision I supported]. Guess that makes me a whistle blower, because he hadn't informed his sisters! They have openly told him about their own bouts with cancer and other serious conditions, because he's asked me to pray for them. I had no idea he hadn't shared about his own illness, since they stay in such close contact.

Sometimes, as adult believers, we have to make decisions that might cause awkwardness or even confrontations. My dad's sudden secretiveness, refusing to allow me to accompany him to consultations with his doctor in the spring, nearly cost him his life. You'd think he would have decided to be open--there's no shame in having an illness, and nothing he could have done to prevent it, either. And since every one of his grand kids was at the hospital with him, is his condition not a known fact in the near, and extended, family? Daddy knows and appreciates Christians praying for him, so truly, "the cat is out of the bag!"

Wisdom, discretion, understanding and truthfulness need to function simultaneously in the believer, since scriptures extolling these sterling qualities abound in scripture.

Proverbs 2:11:  Discretion will preserve you; understanding will keep you.
Proverbs 8:6-7, (Wisdom speaking):Listen, for I will speak of excellent things; and from the opening of my lips will come right things; for my mouth will speak truth

Yet, each of these qualities, when practiced for another's good, must have love as its basis, its cause, its goal and its end, for, as I Corinthians 13:13b says,


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