I don't think I can talk enough about the importance of the Body of Christ.
Seriously, if there's one thing I've harped about to our married daughter is this...find a Bible-believing church, join a small group, put down roots.
I can't even find the words to talk about it in the right way...we have been OVERWHELMED by the outpouring of love from our friends during our lives. Their friendships have been SO important to us. And it's been different friends at different times in different situations and different cities and towns.
And it's been some of the same ones.
From the minute Joshua was born, we were carried and encouraged by the prayers of our friends. And not only that...they brought us food....they brought us gifts. They went with us to doctor's appointments and sat with us in the waiting room at the hospital...on more than one occasion.
We were also blessed by the kindness of strangers. Some guy that was a friend-of-a-friend of someone Jim worked with...he heard about Joshua and wanted to do something nice...we woke up one morning to CASES of formula that were left on our doorstep. No note. No nothing. We had no idea who had done this for us at first.
Ten years later, I was in the process of having Clark...a week in the hospital trying to prevent his premature birth...and in the weeks after his birth...I was really sick, and I needed blood. And a church that we had been members of YEARS before had a blood donor list...and in an hour, there were 3 random people with my blood type at the hospital donating blood...for me. And, during Clark's cancer diagnosis and surgery and subsequent chemo treatments, we had countless people...friends, strangers, doctors, nurses...pray for us and for our family.
There's just something about sharing your burdens with other people that lightens your load.
Jim and I are not good sharers...we like to be the givers. We typically want to deal with the circumstances that come up in our lives...privately...but we are the first to step up when it's happening to someone else.
That's not the way it should be. We are blessed when we can minister to others...and we should not rob others of that joy.
"Praise the Lord...for each day He carries us in His arms." Psalm 68:19