|The beautiful stained glass at my new church in Normal.|
This past week has been an incredible journey and I want to thank all of the people of Pontiac and Normal who have made this such a positive and faith-filled transition!
The people of Pontiac shared with me during a farewell reception and the thoughtful cards, gifts, and well-wishing touched me and ensured that we left Pontiac feeling cared-for! Meanwhile, the people of Normal have welcomed us with graciousness that we could not have expected. For instance, two members of the Staff-Parish relations committee (my liaisons with the congregation) showed up on move-in day with a large laundry basket filled with house-warming gifts: things we would need as we started unpacking. They also presented us with gift cards for Steak-N-Shake and Avanti's. How thoughtful! The Avanti's card paid for our pizza that night, because we had no dishes unpacked nor energy for cooking!
Fast forward to this past weekend. I had a funeral on Saturday morning and preached at a worship service on Saturday night and two worship services on Sunday morning. I made it though the weekend in pretty good shape, but had a moment during the 9 am worship service communion when fatigue hit me. I had to hold on to the wall and rail to finish, but once I sat down and got to rest, I was fine again.
There are moments like that which remind me that I'm still recovering from surgeries, but, mostly, I don't feel any different than before my medical problems began. I just have to watch for my moments of stress, weakness or fatigue and know when to slow down or rest...
Mostly, this week has been a joy. I feel as though I have experienced love from one congregation and great hospitality and welcome from another. Who could ask for more than that?
blessings to you,