Friday, November 25, 2011

Friday, November 25, 2011Free Gifts- Friday Five

Sally, who is a Brit and therefore not doing Thanksgiving when we do on our side of the Pond has posted a thought-provoking Black Friday Five:

Following on from Thanksgiving, and picking up the "Black Friday" theme of boycotting the Christmas rush for bargains I thought it would be good to set a simple Friday Five yet one to get you thinking. I am sure that you'll agree that some of the best gifts we receive do not come in fancy wrapping paper but might be the gift of an unexpected afternoon with a friend or coming across a long forgotten photograph, or- well the list is endless...

So take a bit of time to think back over the last year and ponder the gifts it has offered to you, then list five of those gifts, in no particular order- there is only one rule- all of these gifts must have been free, neither you nor anyone else should have spent money on them!

1. This year has been a tough one with J’s cancer taking over both our lives. Finances have been very difficult, but a friend offered to pick up some of our expenses and then put us in touch with agencies that could help.

2. A 5,000 piece jigsaw puzzle that was in the waiting room of the cancer therapy hospital. It was there each day as I waited for her. Each day I could do a bit more. It kept me sane.

3. I volunteered to join the staff of my local parish and I began teaching Bible Study again and celebrating and preaching about once a month. It keeps me focused on helping others in the midst. After the first of the year they are going to give a small stipend which will help us recover financially.

4. We had Diocesan Convention last weekend. It was a sign of real recovery of a bunch of people who love their church and love Christ. I believe our diocese is on the way to becoming a healthy statement of what it means to be God’s people in this area. The clergy were having fun and so were the laity. Our keynote speaker was +Barbara Anderson from the Church of Canada who told of what it was like to be a part of a group of parishes in a diocese that had ceased to be because of the abuse of First Nation children in their schools years ago. The compassion of that diocese and the compassion of their bishop was awesome and pure gift to us as we struggle to regain what it means to be Christ’s own here in our diocese that has been so torn with schism. A true gift.

5. A J’ who is beginning to return to her pre-chemo self. She became so ‘chemo-brained’ during the therapy since last Easter, that she was almost like living with a stranger. She was incredibly withdrawn and not with her usual verbally astute humor. ( at least I was saved from puns for a short while) I was so worried that she would not be able to return from that. But she is on her way back. She isn’t 100% yet but perhaps by B5

Thanks, Sally.  Good idea. I REFUSE to go anywhere on Black Friday.  J' used to work retail and she would come home after it and swear off Christmas!  We often don't even give each other gifts on Christmas, and long ago I quit trying to keep up with family gifts. You can do this if you don't have children. 

 I love Christmas in Church but I try not to even go to the malls during the month of Dec.


Sally said...

:-) seems we feel the same way about materialism and Christmas. Great play- and may you have many more blessings next year.

revkjarla said...

xoxox thanks for your play. Can't wait to meet you at BE5!

Pastor Joelle said...

Thanks for sharing this. It is a gift in itself to find gifts in the midst of difficulties. I know there have been times that only gratitude kept me from despair.

Joolie said...

great play. You have been through much, your witness much inspires me.

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