…use words when necessary

Tough times may come our way, with questions and loss and heartache. But when these times come (as they always do), this week has reminded me that I am not alone. I can’t help but think of a sentiment that is often attributed to St. Francis of Assisi: “Preach the gospel, and use words only when necessary.” Whether or not he was the one who first stated these words, the concept is worth examining. And it’s one our family has seen, heard and felt in many ways, as God’s message and love have been shared.

Please don’t get me wrong – words are indeed necessary to capture the very heart of the gospel. This was a part of T.R.’s interaction with his father last spring, and for that we are thankful! In James 2:18, the writer says, “Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by what I do.” Many have demonstrated Christ’s love to us in this way, and for that I am so thankful.

Day 25 – 5 thanks for mostly wordless things

1. table mover – many thanks to friend Tom Nash who helped T.R. load tables to be borrowed for use in our home this weekend.

2. encouraging readers – when more than a hundred people visit my blog in one day, it is rather overwhelming… and when Facebook friends leave a short notes about things I’ve written, that is incredibly encouraging.

heartfelt offers of help – when my friends in the church office heard of our coming home event, I had two immediate offers to come and help set up and serve. (We do have assistance here, who I know will be the recipient of thanks here then!)

understanding offices – I really appreciate the doctor offices who helped to reschedule appointments. I know these were both offices that are usually packed with appointments many weeks in advance, and each kindly worked with me.

5. my sister-in-law Barbie – as events have unfolded over the past few days, Barbie has really helped take the lead in assisting with the details that her mother faces at this difficult time. I know this isn’t “wordless,” but her presence with her mother through this has also offered comfort to her younger brother and sister. We love you, Barbie, and are thankful for the wonderful woman you are!