Last week (May 27) I visited Friends in Dublin Indiana and we had a lovely and God willing useful service. Following that, I traveled to Kansas to spend time with my family as my grandmother just passed away. Thelma Gertrude Allan Jay has lived with Jesus throughout her 89 years on Earth — and as she lived with Christ, I trust she continues with Christ now. While my family misses her deeply, we have been saying goodbye for some years. A stroke caused her significant short term memory loss — making the last years of her life frustrating for her. I remember seeing her with books, trying to make notes — but not remembering what she was doing. I also remember her forgetting that people were there as soon as they left the room. Before her stroke, she was an author, a Christian Educator, a voice for sobriety, and she was full of love.
Today, I worshiped with Friends at Hominy Friends meeting in Hominy, Oklahoma (Osage Nation). As I was expected to give a message — I spoke on John 3:1–17. I shared my new-found respect for the Pharisees — and how much I have learned as a child from all those who taught me rules for living well. I also shared with them how the Pharisees kept the children of Israel Jewish, and worshiping YHWH, even when they were taken away from their home. In spite of all the good, Jesus said to Nicodemus, “you must be born again.” I pointed out that rules are good, but they do nothing to change the heart. I pointed to Christ as an example, and as a power to change our heart so that we can do what is right, because our heart is right.
I had a good visit with Friends, and am spending the afternoon helping clean the fellowship hall. I have already been blessed by my visit — I hope that I also have something to offer as I spend a few weeks here.