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God does not Tarry
By Lucinda Lorei
“Lord you have assigned me my portion and my cup; you have made my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance”
These are the verses that comforted my heart as I sat by my mother’s bedside in South Africa last month, waiting for her to breathe her last breath. She was anxious to go and be with the Lord. Each day that I was with her, she woke disappointed that she was still there. She had absolute certainty that her time was near, and was confident about what was to come. She was tired of her body that had grown so weak that she was confined to a wheel chair and was on oxygen because of difficulty breathing. It was hard to see her suffer, and each day I was with her, I asked the Lord to hurry and take her so that her suffering would end. One day I even wept and begged God to take her, when I saw how anxious she was to leave and be with Him. Daily the Lord reminded me that He is her portion and her cup, and that His timing was perfect, and that each day was a gift.
In the last five hours of her life I lay on the bed beside her, holding her hand and I told her that it was okay to leave, that we would miss her but we knew she was ready to go. It was past midnight and the house was quiet, and the Andrea Bocelli CD was filling the air with beautiful music. My sister had lit a candle by her bed, and turned the lights off, which made everything seem so peaceful. I felt the moment was suspended in time. I prayed constantly for her during those hours, and was filled with a sense of awe that the moment of her slipping into eternity was coming. I had an overwhelming sense of the rightness of God’s timing. I had thought He was tarrying, and for the past three days had been begging Him to come and get her. It had been hard to understand why He wasn’t taking her. But as I prayed in those early morning hours, waiting for her to go, I suddenly had a picture in my mind of a horseman on a powerful horse, galloping through a forest in the early hours of the dawn, galloping towards my mother as fast as he could. The only sound was the sound of the horses’ hooves as they raced through the night. The rider was leaning forward and going as fast as he could. The picture in my mind literally took my breath away. I realized that the Lord was not tarrying, in fact He was racing towards her, eager to welcome His beloved to Heaven. It was only me with my limited understanding that thought He was slow to come. He knew what my mother’s portion and cup was, it was all planned out ahead of time, and He was coming to get her at just the right time. At 5:40am on January 31st He swept her into eternity with Him. It was a heart-breaking, but achingly beautiful moment, for me and my sister. One minute she was there, the next she was gone.
In the days that followed I thought how often I have needed to wait for the Lord; how often I have felt He was tarrying. In my 20’s I went through a heartbreak, and wondered if I would ever marry. The Lord assured me He was my portion and my cup, and that I was to live life fully in Him wherever He drew those boundary lines. A few years later I met Kim and was overwhelmed to see how right it was to have waited for him. After Camille was born I had two miscarriages and wondered if I would ever have another child. Through that heartbreak I had to lean on God and give all my hopes and fears to Him – Lord, you are my portion and my cup. The boundary lines you have drawn are enough for me. One child is enough for me, Lord, if that be your will. When Celestia was born she had to be resuscitated and was given an Apgar score of 2. The doctors said only time would tell if she was going to develop normally. Here was the child I had waited for, and instead of “making it all right” God was asking me to wait on Him again and trust that His portion and cup were sufficient. Whatever the boundary lines He drew for Celestia, we would believe those were ‘pleasant places’. As most of you know she developed normally and other than acute asthma has enjoyed good health. We are so thankful for that.
Later Kim and I went through the trial of him being without work for months on end. I begged God for deliverance and He seemed to take so long to find Kim a new job. How could it be God’s will that our finances were so tight, that we had so much stress because of no job? I had to learn, again, that He was not tarrying as I thought, but that He was my portion and my cup and His boundary lines were falling in pleasant places. He would deliver us not at the eleventh hour, but at the perfect hour.
So as I lay there waiting for the Lord to come and get my beloved mother, I thanked Him for the blessing of being with her in her final hours. I was able to thank Him afresh for His perfect timing in all areas of her life, and in my life. In those days of waiting I had so many opportunities to tell her I loved her, and to thank her for all she meant to me. She had brought me to faith in Christ 35 years ago, and here she was about to be reunited with her beloved Savior. What a privilege to be by her side at that moment. What a joy to wait for the Lord to come and get her at the perfect time – Lord you have assigned my mother her portion and her cup. You have made her lot secure. These boundary lines have indeed fallen in pleasant places, surely she does have a delightful inheritance.
Whatever you are waiting for today; whatever your hopes and dreams; your heartaches; your pains, I hope that you will be comforted to know that the Lord does not tarry in delivering you, but He is drawing wonderful boundary lines and making your lot and your cup secure. Enjoy the moment however hard it is, because He has a plan to deliver you and to fulfill your heart’s desire. The boundary lines that He has chosen for you have indeed fallen for you in pleasant places.
About Lucinda: Lucinda is married to Kim and they have three children, Camille 23; Celestia 18 and Tristan 16. They have lived in Fredericksburg for 23 years and have gone to New Life in Christ since their first Sunday in town. With family spread all over the world, but none in Virginia, the New Life family has become their real family. For the past five years they have hosted the Foundations Care Group for young professionals.
Funeral for Jean Craye, Lisa Capitano’s mother, TODAY. Visitation at noon, Funeral service at 1pm in the Sanctuary
Contact Joy Plaia if you would like to care for the Capitano family by providing a meal in the next week or two.
Help with morning coffee treats for Sunday mornings during Missions Month.
No one has signed up for this so far and this Sunday is our first week. Please consider contributing a treat one Sunday morning in March. Sign up HERE.
Ladies’ Missions Breakfast, 9am March 8th in the Fireside Room
Karen Melnick, missionary with Friends of Russian Jewry will be the speaker. Come fellowship! Bring your daughter(s) and a dish to share.
Hope of Christ and Evident Grace Celebrated at March 9th Evening Service
Reception to follow. If you are willing to bring a finger food to share, sign up HERE.
Talents to Treasure, April 12th, 8:45am-1pm
Mark your calendars now! Talents to Treasure will be a fun time of fellowship and learning as we enjoy the talents of our sisters in Christ. Various small group sessions will be offered. You will have the opportunity to choose and then attend 3 of them. The sessions will include knitting, photography, jewelry making, healthy eating, gardening, and more! Sign ups will be in the foyer in March 16th and 23rd. Keep watching for more information!
Fall Women’s Retreat, October 24-26 at Blessings Lodge, Camp Overlook
“All the paths of the Lord are mercy and truth,
To such as keep His covenant and His testimonies…
The secret of the Lord is with those who fear Him,
And He will show them His covenant.”
Psalm 25:10 and 14
Retreat theme: “Sovereign God of the Covenant“
Teaching by our own Marcia Vastine
- $120 includes 2 nights lodging and meals dinner Friday through lunch Sunday
- Hotel-style lodging with four singles per room, private baths
- Reserve your spot at the signup table in the foyer March 16th or 23rd with a $40 deposit to NLICC, additional $40 payments due in June and September
- Questions? Contact Connie Both.
Accepting Nominations for Women’s Ministry Training
Women’s Ministry Training is applicable to a woman in any season of life and has been a great encouragement to those of us who have gone through it. It is not necessary to serve on the Women’s Ministry Committee after completion of the training. Please let us know by March 9th if you would like to join us or if you know of a woman that you think should serve on the Committee. The training is a prerequisite to service on the Committee so we want to make sure that those ladies are encouraged to participate. Submit your nominations on the flyer in the bulletin or email to Kathryne Marple or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Long Distance Baby Shower for Ann Park
Ann and Doug Park are expecting again! She is due on September 7th. Doug and Ann moved to Chicago at the end of this past year and are visiting churches in hopes to find a new church home. Since they are still in our church covenant family and we love them dearly, we prayed for them at the Baby Prayer Shower and want to send them a care package next month. Tracy Greenberg has a card to sign, or you may want to write your own letter of encouragement. Tracy will be getting a Target giftcard to celebrate the new baby. Please contact her if you would like to add to it. Tracy will be collecting through the Ladies’ Missions Brunch on March 8th.
Baby Shower for Amanda Oberlin this Saturday from 2-4pm
Hosted by the Foundations Care Group at the Lorei’s home, 5215 Leavells Crossing Drive, Fredericksburg, VA 22407. RSVP to Sarah Schroeder or Lucinda Lorei. Amanda is having a girl and is registered at Target and Amazon.
Office Help Needed
- Christine in the office is looking for some help with archiving our church history. If you would be interested by sorting records and/or church pictures, please contact her at email@example.com or 540-786-4848.
- Please let Christine know if you would be interested in helping to update the Missions Bulletin Board on at least a monthly basis. We would like to keep our missionaries’ information available to the congregation as many of them take time to send newsletters and pictures. Also we like to highlight New Life trips and teams that are ministering on behalf of our congregation.
- Do you have a couple hours on a Friday afternoon you can spare? Sign up HERE to fold bulletins after 1pm some Friday. Takes about 1 1/2 – 2 hours (faster if you bring a friend!) Questions? Ask Pam in the office.
Thank you to those women who have committed to writing a devotion or testimony for the Women’s Update in the coming weeks, they are encouragements to all of us! Keep them coming! Do you have a story of God’s faithfulness or of a lesson he has wrought in your heart that might encourage others? Share it with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Do you have ministry needs or announcements that you’d like to get out? We’ll pass the word.
in His grace,
for the Women’s Ministry Committee
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