and My Family
What are the interests of an elderly lady you ask?
My more sedentary hobbies are crochet, jigsaw puzzles, writing devotionals and reading – historical fiction as well as Biblical history.
I love when folks make the Bible come alive. Erland Smith came each summer to our town – a talented artist, ventriloquist and musician, this man excited the imaginations of a church full of kids who learned Bible stories and memorized scripture with the greatest of enthusiasm! The memory of what one man did inspires me to try to be what God wants me to be day by day. The Word of God was also reverenced in our home. How fondly I remember my Dad sitting with his Bible open on his knee to read us the Christmas story each year! The Lord Jesus has remained the central figure of my life, from those days, forward.
Vocal music, particularly classical, Celtic and gospel enhance my quiet hours. Let me note that in my opinion Zambian singers are the best in the world with their acapella 5-part harmony! It has been a joy to participate in musical groups throughout most of my adult life.
I’ve always been interested in nature. God has given me many opportunities to see the beauties of His creation. I remember throwing snowballs on Franz Joseph Glacier in New Zealand while looking down upon the rainforest and listening to the bell bird. Birding has been a casual hobby cultivated by my parents’ Audubon Bird book and multiple feeders in our back yard. However, on mission trips it has been frustrated by time limitations! I loved to travel to historic sites as well, as to the mountains and the sea. Today I travel via TV, excited to see familiar places. Time doesn’t permit reviewing all of the adventures of a lifetime, but I remember the thrill of exploring caves and pyramids. The purity of freshly fallen snow often makes me reflect on the purity of God’s love! I grew up in northern Ontario where summer was a short 3 months and snow could be expected any other months of the year.
People! Probably my number one interest! As we ministered at medical clinics my prayer would always be “O that they would see Jesus in me”. Because I was a nurse, the urge to bring health and healing has always been a primary concern. One woman lay dying on the mud floor of a hut in Zambia. My friend and I never felt more helpless and could only whisper words of Jesus’ love to her, praying that the Holy Spirit would minister to her in His own special way. Those who have been abused have always held a place close to my heart, so training support people in different countries, has been very rewarding. This remains an evil requiring our diligent prayer.
Current ministries entail mentoring, discipling and facilitating. I had also a precious experience, early in my retirement, of sharing Biblical Theology with a group of pastors in Kenya, via email. For completing this course they received a certificate from the mission MATE/FCC. God has blessed me with sweet fellowship in the Presbyterian and Pentecostal churches where I’ve had the pleasure of teaching ladies. There is a sense of urgency to teach people what it means to follow Him who said “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life”. Sadly many have been led astray by wolves in sheep’s clothing, not understanding clearly what the doctrines of scripture mean. This drives me to write!
God has blessed me with friends around the world! What a joy it is to interrelate with brothers and sisters in Christ! One cleaner in a hotel in Addis Ababa listened to me witnessing to some young shop keeper Apparently she understood English enough to ask them to tell me she was a Christian. I dashed after her to give her a hug, knowing we would not meet again until we are in heaven, yet she is my sister in Christ.
Family has always been precious to me. I thank God for the wonderful support my parents and my in-laws were for my ministry, both as Chaplain at Pearson Airport and later in missions. I bless the Lord that my children walk with Him and followed my interest in missions, by taking trips with me and with their church. I have shared with my grandkids too how important friendship is. Over a life-time, through joy and sorrow brothers and sisters in Christ have laughed and wept with me, praying and encouraging me to be strong in my faith!
In my senior years nothing can compare with my worship time each morning. My greatest joy is knowing one day I will see my Saviour face to face. What a glorious hope! My life verse is “I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live. Yet not I, but Christ lives in me. And the life which I now live, I live by faith in the Son of God who loves me and gave Himself for me”! Praise God that even into old age we can know the will of God, as we seek to live lives pleasing to Him.