Family Letter by Debra
Spring has sprung here in Missouri, also have these tiny blue flowers in the front yard. I ponder their purpose- what is it? Is it to welcome spring, to shelter an insect, or to bring honor to their Creator? Some days, I also ponder my purpose. With so many changes taking place in my life ( in our life) over the last 10 months – an empty nest, a new place to live, a new people group to reach, and a new language to master (but have you lived in Missouri – ha-ha) I soon recall what our Lord and Savior has to says about our purpose.
Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, 2 Timothy 1:9
The work of the ministry is never finished, whether in the United States or on the foreign field, but I certainly do not have to tell you that. Jeff and I have been busy serving the Lord in Springfield, Missouri. The city of Springfield is very religious, but also a city of many lost souls. Jeff has been serving the Lord by serving our Pastor and the church family with the purpose of praising the Lord and bring glory to His name. In the adult Sunday school, Jeff is been teaching through the life of Abraham, his victories and his failures. Jeff has also had the opportunity to preach in Sunday and mid-week services, also leads music, prayer meeting and conducts our Bible quiz during our mid-week service. Jeff changes hats during the week, taking on the role of handyman. Our church building is getting older all the time, constantly in need of repair and upgrades. All this to full the purpose of housing the Lord’s church, Grace Bible Baptist Church.
You have heard the old saying that grandchildren are the reward for not killing your children, but I find that they are much more than that. Our grandchildren serve a greater purpose in our life then just the results of an old saying. They teach and remind us of the great love, patience, mercy, and a multitude of other characteristics of the Lord Jesus Christ. Each of our grandchildren is so different and brings an abundance of joy to us. Lydia (our oldest, now 11) is a reader, she reminds us of God’s wisdom. She has been asked to review several children’s books to give her opinion of the content. Lilibeth (8) is the grandchild that reminds us of God’s creativity. This spring one of her drawings was placed in the spring collection at the Art museum in Springfield. Eliana (7) is the grandchild that reminds us of God’s enthusiasm and His patience. And there is Elijah, who in all of his difficulties, reminds us of the forgiveness our Lord Jesus Christ bestows on us daily.
Our children, Gina, Donna, James, and David, are truly a blessing to us. It is an encouragement to see them mature as young women and men, who are comfortable in the positions and the purposes the Lord has for them. Gina, wife of Daniel, mother of Lydia, and author of Christian novels, has a full and rewarding life. She has just released her second book. Gina and the family are moving back to Colorado to serve the Lord there. Donna, mother, and part time employee for a local restaurant chain, has a very full life as she raises three children. Donna continues to have a positive outlook on life, and spends the little extra time she finds remodeling her home in Springfield. James, oh boy, that young man is a go getter. On May 12th, he will be graduating from the College of the Ozarks with a 4.0 GPA (Summa cum Laude). And degree in Computer science. He is very purpose driven, finishing in 3 1/2 years. He also is getting married one week later and starting his new job with an investment firm in their computer center, software development. Then there is David, our baby, Okay, he is not much of a baby at 6’2’’ and very mature at this point of his life, but he is our youngest. David shows much compassion to those around him. He knows who he is at college and his purpose. His studies are going well, finishing his freshman year in just a few weeks. He has been working on campus under the digestion of the chief at the Keeter Center, which has a four- star restaurant and small hotel. Caitlyn, our future (very near future) daughter-in-law is a blessing to us. We have gotten to know her over the past three years and half years while she attends college with James. She is such a sweet young lady. Her character shows the patience of the Lord. She will graduate in May also.
As I write this letter, I begin to meditate on the purpose the Lord has for me as time passes and life changes. As a wife, my purpose as a help meet has not changed, just the conditions surrounding me. One of us does not see as well as before, the other the hearing, and we find ourselves writing more things down on paper to remember them than before. As a mother, the joy of watching our children mature, knowing, that with the Lord’s constant help, we prepared them for their future life. Now, a school book recommendation, a paint color suggestion, a list of names for invites, and a copy of that favorite recipe are among the simpler questions asked of me as our children find their own way through life as adults. As a grandmother, the joys and the concerns are unending. Hugs, kisses and the words of ‘’grandma (grandpa) I love you’’ mean more than our words can express. And being a servant of the Lord Jesus Christ is so rewarding. Whether on the foreign field or the streets of Springfield, serving is the same. I continue to serve my Lord in sharing the gospel, distributing material containing God’s truth, helping missionaries by helping with their support accounts or helping our Pastor, his wife and the church body with the many tasks that need to be accomplished.
Our son, James, gave me a card for my birthday in March. It reads “A mother holds your hand for a while and your heart forever.” It caused me to think of the love of God, He holds our hands and are hearts forever and gives us that purpose for our life – His purpose.
Love and Prayers,