Since last Saturday, July 20, until last night, July 25, I have been heavily involved in Northwest Yearly Meeting’s annual sessions on the campus of George Fox University. It’s been a full week. Many aspects stand out in retrospect.
--The joy of renewed relationships from across the yearly meeting, and beyond.
--The fun of accompanying our Bolivian friend/Friend Alicia Lucasi. One of the best parts happened before Yearly Meeting when we traveled west and introduced Alicia to the Pacific Ocean. (Bolivia is landlocked.) We also got to share our workshop with her Wednesday afternoon.
--The heaviness of being a new member of the board of elders. My next step is to learn to let this responsibility become part of the light load and easy yoke I bear with Jesus. But right now it seems weighty, and I’m asking myself, “Nancy, what have you gotten yourself into this time?”
--The gentleness of Friends process as we listened and spoke into the controversial topic of human sexuality. While nothing has been resolved yet, we do have consensus about treating each other with love and respect as we move forward.
--The messages of Richard Foster, reminding us of our strong center in “the One who speaks to our condition,” Jesus Christ. Times of praise, silent waiting, expectancy.
--The beauty of our university campus, mild weather, the hanging flower baskets, good food—all intimations of grace and glory.
--The active participation of our youth and their contribution in our meetings for worship and business.
--The commissioning of Elizabeth Todd as a Friend Serving Abroad in Ramallah. The vision of the Board of Global Outreach is to learn how to be a Friend of Jesus in difficult places. It makes me wish I were younger and could start over, possibly in Russia.
It was a good week, but I’m glad it’s behind me. It was a relief to sleep in this morning, a relief that will be short-lived as we prepare for our next trip. If anything, I sense a renewed call to pray for our yearly meeting, our pastors, our churches, our Friends serving abroad, and, certainly, our elders. May God have mercy on us all. May Jesus shine through us.