I always worry when people expect me to be funny because I have to be the world's lousiest joke teller. Don't get me wrong - I love a good, clean joke but for the life of me I never remember punch lines or I end up paraphrasing or messing everything up and then it all sounds daft in the end.
So, I am not sure what will happen this weekend on the laughter Richter scale. It seems, sometimes, that the more I am myself, the more funny people find me. I will just listen to where God wants me to go with his words and see what happens. I love speaking about hope these days, though, and I am very glad that I get to take Florence with me to finish off my presentation.
|Glynis M. Belec, Student Nurse by John D.G. Latham|
Geriatrics was my specialty at the time. It was during my job stint at a local nursing home that I met Florence. Florence had had a stroke. At the time, I remember thinking she was older but I do believe she was only in her 60s. (Age is all relative, right?) She had nasty psoriasis as well as all the typical symptoms of a stroke patient.
My heart would go out to her because she became so frustrated when she wanted to speak but couldn't find the words. She had obviously been a happily married woman because she would show me her photo album and try to communicate her heart as she pointed to pages. Her husband had died unexpectedly of a massive heart attack and she had 'ended up' in a nursing home as a result. She had a good family, but she seemed lost without her husband. Yet, she still had a twinkle in her eye. I wasn't a Christian at the time, but I remember her Bible on her bedside stand. I remember how she would quietly read it and how it calmed her. I saw that twinkle in her eye as a shimmer of hope. I didn't really understand her 'hope' at the time but years, after I came to 'walk in the Way', I wondered and then often thought about Florence.
God soon spelled it out. He laid it on my heart to follow up on that notice at the Bruce County Library - a Writing Contest. So I did.I knew what I was to write about. My little blue typewriter became my best friend and all of a sudden I had written 6 pages of Florence's story. I ended up winning the county wide contest and I was spurred into action. I took courses. I read books. I kept my ears open for conferences and before I knew it I worked my way into writing a weekly column in our local newspaper.
It's been a journey, but thanks to Florence for giving me cause to write. And thanks be to the Holy Spirit for nudging me in the direction of my heart. It was my beginning.
This weekend, I will share Florence's story, but I won't do it out of vainglory. I will do it because I remember how God opened wide a door. A whole lot has happened in between Florence and the now that I have had the privilege to write about. I can't tell it all but I will share my heart. I will put on my Life Jacket [it's a prop - maybe they will laugh then] and I will talk about hope and joy and laughter and Florence. And my prayer is that God will be glorified through all my noise.