Monday, December 29, 2008

The Days of Christmas Week

Last week was a whirlwind of activity--lots of people, lots of food, lots of commotion. It was enough to make a body weary in the best of circumstances. Since Marty and her family were coming and since we hadn't all been together to open gifts together in a long time, we decided to wait until they were here before sharing gifts among children and grandchildren. They drove all day on Saturday, arrived about 9:30 p.m., Tommy and I both preached on Sunday morning so we gathered late in the afternoon for dinner and to see what had been left under the tree. It was fun to watch the cousins interact and to enjoy being together.

Now we are immersed in college bowl games, often not knowing much about the teams we are watching. Since Kevin is connected to the University of North Carolina, we were sorry to see them lose the other night and since he and Marty live in Raleigh, we were pulling for NC State this afternoon when they lost to Rutgers. Years of living in California had us rooting for Cal against Miami the other night. Tonight we are taping the Missouri game for an octogenarian friend who played football in his days there. We'll get real serious with our watching and choice of teams when the SEC games get in full swing. Already, I'm keeping up with Mississippi State basketball online and wishing we could go to games like we did in our younger, healthier days.

I mentioned that Tommy and I both preached on Sunday. We both went to the lectionary readings for sermon texts and did touch base off and on during the week to see where each of us was headed, but our sermons were not alike. He followed the Old Testament passage and the passage from one of Paul's letters. I chose to use Psalm 148 for a call to worship and the gospel reading in Luke, concluding with the passage in Galatians 4. Tommy's title was "That Was Then; This is Now;" mine was "Beyond the Manger." I will always be amazed at the way God opens His word to those of us privileged to share it and gives us different insights.

We have a couple more days of being with family before we get back to the business of treating cancer. Tom and I go to Corinth Friday for an appointment with the oncologist and the next chemo treatment. I have always believed that if you take your medicine, follow the doctor's orders, and rest when the body dictates, you should feel fine and be able to go on with everyday activities. Now I'm finding that age and the multiple chemotherapy treatments I've had are taking its toll. It's been more than three weeks since my last infusion and I stay tired. The drug itself is affecting my feet and hands, making them most uncomfortable and mouth sores make it hard to eat at times. I say this to say that I usually say when asked how I am, that I am fine and I'm tired of not being entirely truthful. Let me be quick to add, however, that though my body isn't in the best shape, my spirit is strong because it is God's Spirit that keeps me going. In our trek through the wilderness called life, we are to trust and give God the glory. I covet your prayers for the journey.

Pastor Margaret

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