On Monday October 4, 2021 Kelly arrived in Lancaster from Fort Worth, Texas. Kelly and I met in July 2010 in Freetown, Sierra Leone. From the moment that I met Kelly I was inspired and challenged by her unwavering love and devotion for Christ and others. Few people have had such an impact on my Jesus Journey as Kelly.
This is the longest that I have gone without seeing Kelly. From the beginning of the pandemic Kelly has worked in an ICU that strictly saw covid patients. The amount of suffering and death that Kelly has seen is beyond what I can comprehend. Kelly has one last shift left at her hospital and then she will be heading to the Dominican Republic in which she will serve the Lord through helping women and children with a Christian organization.
I praise God for friendship. I praise God for the opportunity to have spent time with Kelly. While I am deeply sad (and have tears running as I type this) that Kelly is on her way back to Fort Worth, I would not have traded this time with her for anything!
While she was here, we read 2 Peter together on Tuesday and yesterday we read Jude. It is amazing that God in His grace has given us these warnings of false prophets, false teachings so that we will not be led astray. Lies and manipulation are hallmarks of this world but for those who are in Christ we know that Christ is Light and Truth. May we continue to walk and shine Christ’s Light!
I am thankful for the meals Kelly and I were able to share with Nathan. It is beautiful to see how much Kelly and Nathan get along. Truth be told, when I first met Nathan I thought that he and Kelly would be really good together and they both said, “NO!” While I am NOT a camper, mountain climber like Nathan and Kelly, I am glad they can encourage each other in these shared experiences and interests. Kelly helps me to understand Nathan by giving me a different perspective.
What I love the most about my friendship with Kelly is that even though we have very different interests, our friendship is deeply rooted in our love and passion for Christ and others. I am also thankful and humbled that Kelly sees the love that I have for her and for Nathan. I am SO thankful for the opportunity to have hosted and served Kelly and in return, I am SO thankful for how Kelly brought love, joy and the fruit of the Spirit to encourage and bolster me!
Lord God, thank You for the incredible gift of friendship. Relationships are messy and I KNOW that I am not always an easy person to love so thank You for Your grace and mercy that You give to me and give to others who love, live and deal with me!
Lord God, thank You for Kelly. Thank You for her heart to visit Nathan and I before heading to the Dominican Republic. Lord God, prepare Kelly for the Dominican Republic and prepare the Dominican Republic for her. Lord God, prepare the family Kelly will be staying with for her and prepare Kelly for the family. Lord God, make Kelly’s efforts successful! Lord God, use this time to refresh, restore and renew Kelly. Lord, use Kelly to bring life to others as she brings life to me. Lord God, thank You for the friendship that You are cultivating between Kelly, Nathan and I. Thank You and praise You Lord that we all get along and that we love and care for each other as brothers and sisters in Christ.
Lord God, thank You for this reader. Lord God, may they have a friend who sticks closer than a brother. May they be a friend to others even when it is messy and difficult. Lord God, for the reader who may not want friends or does not have close friends, Lord God, send me, send a believer into this person’s life. You have NOT called us to do life alone. Lord God, for those of us who are bent more toward solitude convict our hearts that You have wired us for community.
Lord God, thank You again for Kelly! May Kelly be Your Hands and Feet no matter where she is, no matter what work she is doing. Lord God, help all of us to be more like Christ. In Jesus’s Name I pray. Amen.