Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Wednesday Whees!!!

I truly do not understand where the work week goes. We're over the hump and on the down slope already...

Today at noon I lunched with one of my dearest friends, Vernita Porter. She's the leader of the Women's Ministry at Church For All Nations, where I worship and where I worked for a year and a half assisting Pastor Ken Ecker. That's where and when I met Vernita, because Pastor Ken was the overseer of the Women's Ministry at that time (in addition to being head of the Deaf Church, Adult Christian Education, Water Baptism, and even more -- talk about a multi-tasker!).

Vernita was also at my side, along with my sisters and niece Wendy, when I had abdominal surgery last year to remove a large ovarian cyst that was too large to remove any other way. It was biopsied and found to be benign, but it needed to come out because had it burst, it would have poisoned me.

Much as I love, love, love my sisters (and oh, how I love, love, love my sisters), I needed a Prayer Warrior at my side when I went in for the surgery. (My sisters aren't overtly spiritual;that's putting it mildly. Wendy is very spiritual, but she's a well-behaved, quiet-voiced, charming, amazing Lutheran -- and I resonate best to the "Pentecostal/Charismatic" type of Prayer Warrior -- and Vernita has that going on in a wonderful way!)

Several other pastors from my church stopped by, too, which I wasn't expecting (don't know why I wasn't expecting that, but I wasn't) ... but they too were much too well-behaved (gentlemanly) to fill the bill I was seeking to have filled! I needed Vernita! That's exactly who I needed and so I asked and she said, "Yes!" I will always be grateful for that!

We had a blast as we waited for the technicians to cart me off to surgery, laughing and being utterly silly. I was completely relaxed and unafraid. I knew the Holy Spirit was along for the ride; I could see Him in Vernita's eyes! At one point one of the technicians came over to us to introduce himself and then said, "I don't know what kind of party you have going on over here, but I want to be invited!" We invited him, but he wandered off -- had stuff to prepare...

I sailed through the surgery and its aftermath so well that my surgeon called me his "miracle patient." We all know Who guided the surgeon's hands and the other technicians' skills -- even the surgeon! (he told me so afterward)... (This story has been a testimony in church a time or two; this is the shortest version I've ever told!)

Anyway, Vernita and I had lunch today and I talked her ear off. I know I shut up long enough to ask her how things are going with her after she finished asking how things are going with me...

There is something about this woman that I just love. Many things, actually. She serves the Lord with every waking breath. That's probably what I love best. But in addition to that she's very talented, and has "been through it" in life and has come out at the other end just a glorious, giving, shining reflector of Christ...

She's a lot of fun. She's the one who makes and evaluates plans for the women's Bible Study, retreats, Ladies Nights Out, fundraisers, etc, then her Board discusses which of the options to do on any given year. There is never a dull moment. I have a photo of her I could blackmail her with (this is a joke!), she is such a clown at times... in the best sense of the word!

I can't imagine life without her in it anymore, even though I don't see her all that often. It's just that whenever we do get together, it's as if we haven't missed a beat, as if we just saw each other the day before.

I mostly have "acquaintances" in my life -- family or acquaintances. I'm like a tiger in this way: I'm a loner (for no particular reason -- I'm just not gregarious) but when I do find a stalwart, loving friend, he or she is a "keeper" -- it's for LIFE! I have identified many "keepers" (Cleve Kingston, Barb Hendrickson, Nancy Graf, Val Barrett, Melody Adams, Quentin Rinehart, Bonnie Duehring, Carrie and Robert Denmark, Pastors Ecker, Pastor Meenan, Jeanne Boyle ) -- and some others I more or less "inherited" (thank God and the Kelleys) because we were fans of De's (Margot Worthington, Anne Richardson, Marianne Tyler, Terry Rioux, A.C. Lyles) and when we met, we just knew each other was a "keeper"! And some of my "keepers" I haven't even MET yet in the flesh (Billie Rae in NY, Alison in England/Spain, Claudia and Sabine in Germany, Helen Schofield in New Zealand, the Muncasters in Canada) but I will -- oh, yes, oh, yes, I will!

It's just a matter of time -- and time flies by so fast anymore, that it's bound to be any day, now!

It has taken me a long time to find this "family of my own choosing (friends)," but it has been worth every minute and I look forward to having them as best buds for life!


Alison said...

I know exactly what you mean! Keepers are for life. For me, having a connection with someone is what life's about, and what with being a loner (which I've learnt to be comfortable with and almost proud) it means all the more.

I may yet be found lurking at Vegas, fleshily. It depends on so many things that it's unlikely, but you never know. My life changes every day at the moment (which is great!). But we'll meet when the time is right. I know that.


Carl Rylander said...

Dear Kristine,

You mentioned Terry Le Rioux in your blog. I've just finished reading her Biog of De. I feel that I've lived a life! That's what a good biog should do! Very interesting to see those photos of him and read about him as a young man.