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Comfort in Christ
by Kathi Carlson
“Weeping may remain for a night but Joy comes in the morning.”
I can’t remember a time when Christ wasn’t an integral part of my life. I was blessed to have Godly parents who placed God first in their home. It was through their influence and the guidance of my Aunt Irene who was my Sunday School teacher, that I accepted Christ into my heart as a little girl. As I reflect over my life, I see the hand of God everywhere: through my chosen profession of nursing; my marriage to a precious Christian man; two healthy children; relocation form WI to VA in 1987, Florida in 2001, then back to VA in 2013; job losses of Don, a once prodigal son, who Praise God has been restored to faith; the cancer diagnosis in 2007 and subsequent death of my sweet husband Don after a 2 year courageous journey on April 2nd 2009. Without faith and a relationship with Christ we are broken vessels. God has been so faithful to me and my family. In December of 2009 my son Brian was close to death with idiopathic cardiomyopathy and an embolic stroke. His recovery has been miraculous as stated by his physicians. In March of this year I retired form Lakeland Regional Medical Center after a 45 year career as a Registered Nurse. Nursing was always more than a job, it was a mission and a ministry. It was challenging and not always easy, but it was a joy to care for so many patients and their families, as well as mentor many new nurses as they began their career. It was always my desire that patients, families, and staff would see Christ reflected in me. Then on April 27th I moved to Fredericksburg to be near my daughter and her family (Chris & Kristin Garcia, Keeli, Olivia, and Luke) as well as my grandson David in Va. Beach. NLICC has been such a blessing from the first Sunday I attended. I felt so welcomed and loved. Friendships began and Women’s Bible Study, Care Group, and Sunday School have strengthened those relationships, and have helped to make me feel at home and that this is exactly where God wants me to be at this time. Life as a widow can be very lonely at times but I have learned as Paul stated “to be content in whatever state I am” and “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” Philippians 4:11,13. We had 40 years of a Christ-centered marriage and knowing that Don is with the Lord is so comforting. Being part of The Body of Christ is so important to me. I desire to remain faithful to Christ for the rest of my days.
About Kathi: I grew up in Wisconsin in a small rural community and spent lots of time with my cousins at our grandparents farm. I was blessed with a rich Christian heritage. I met my wonderful husband Don when his father became my pastor. I graduated from nursing school in ’68, married in ’69, relocated to VA Beach in ’87, then because of a job loss for Don, relocated to Lakeland, FL in 2001. My 45 year Nursing career included 25 years in Critical Care, followed by Cardiac Care, Step-Down Trauma, and lastly Shift Supervisor of a Stroke Unit. Don and I were blessed with 40 years of a Christ Centered marriage. I have 2 children, Brian and Kristin Garcia, and 4 precious grandchildren. I returned to VA to be near family April 27, 2013. I enjoy reading, attending Bible Studies, inspirational music, and spending time with friends, family, and especially being with the grandkids. I also enjoy sending cards and notes of encouragement.
Mental Health and the Mission of the Church Women’s Mini-Conference – tomorrow, November 16th, 8:30am – 1:30pm in Room 100
Please pray for our presenters Pam Lopes and Mitzi Sampson and those who will share their testimonies – Frances Sexton, Mary Jane Kittredge and Heather O’Hara. Pray that God is glorified and that the attendees are encouraged and equipped. We are so thankful for Connie Both for arranging the food and for our worship leaders – Sarah Schroeder, Kathie Ritchie, Cynthia Perez, and Kathryne Marple.
Cookie Exchange Evening of December 13th in the Fireside Room
Mark your calendars! A Christmas goodie/cookie exchange will be held immediately following the JH/SH departure for caroling (exact time to be announced). Make your favorite Christmas treat and package them in individual bags (3-4 items per bag). Bring as many bags as you want. You will leave with the same amount of bags of yummy Christmas treats! Bring some extra to snack on while we have a wonderful time of fellowship! No RSVP required, just bring treats if you want to exchange or yourself if you just want to fellowship.
The Thanksgiving ministry is an outreach to the community. In addition to delivering meals to shut-ins, meals are delivered to individuals in neighborhoods throughout the community. NLICC’s ministry to Muslims has grown out of this initial contact. Look for a flyer in the bulletin in coming Sundays about the Thanksgiving Ministry. There will be a need for turkeys and pies Thanksgiving morning, kitchen help and families and individuals to deliver meals. There is also a Thanksgiving dinner at the church for anyone who would like to come. If you would like to participate, please fill out the flyer and put it in the offering plate. Financial gifts to assist the ministry are also welcomed.
Missions Fundraising Night – November 19th 4-7pm at Central Park Chick-Fil-A
Heather Hepperle is raising money for an MTW Missions trip to Japan. Consider stopping by Chick-Fil-A in Central Park on Tuesday from 4-7pm and having dinner or a snack. You must turn in a flyer for Heather to get credit. Flyers will be available in the foyer on Sunday, make sure you pick one up!
Operation Christmas Child Shoeboxes
Bring your box(es) to church no later than Sunday, November 24th. They will be gathered right after church and taken to the local relay center for the next leg of the journey. Visit HERE for information on packing a box. Questions? Call Brenda Storms
If you are willing to provide hospitality for Capernaum on a Thursday evening, click here. It’s a great opportunity to serve as individuals, a couple, friends or as a care group. The last two meetings have been without a host. Please consider this community outreach – an opportunity for missions right in our own building!
November Prayer Focus
Thanks to Gretchen Trump for preparing a prayer focus for Women’s Ministry each month. We invite you to pray along with us:
“Let the beloved of the LORD rest secure in Him, for He shields him all day long, and the one the LORD loves rests between His shoulders.” Deuteronomy 33:12
“Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in his holy habitation. God settles the solitary in a home…” Psalm 68: 5, 6a
Heavenly Father, how gracious You have been towards us. You have always been there for us. You have never forsaken us. You continually load us with blessings beyond our wildest imaginations. You, O LORD, are a shield about us, our glory, and the lifter of our head (Ps 3:3). This morning, we bring to You those women who are bowed down because of loneliness, grief, brokenness, disease and emptiness. We plead for Your Mercy and Grace to be poured out upon their heads. Lift them up out of their pain. Bring them into fellowship with women of faith. May they be granted ears to hear the heavenly calling to come to You, all those who are weary and heavy laden (Mt 11:28). For You will grant them Peace. For You will be their Comforter. For You will carry their burdens. How will this be done? One way is through us. We make ourselves available to be used by You to bring the comfort, encouragement and guidance that the broken-hearted woman needs. We ask Your Holy Spirit to give us eyes to see those in need and ears to hear Your direction on how to spread Your Love to these precious women. Let New Life in Christ Church be a “home” of refuge. May we bring Glory to You in what our hands are led to do. In Jesus’ Name, AMEN!
in His Grace,
for the Women’s Ministry Committee