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Archive for the ‘It’s Good To Be Home’ Category

IT’S GOOD TO BE HOME!

moving van

Rickey greeting the Moving Van in New Haven

For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’ Jeremiah 29:11
July 1st we happily became residents of New Haven, Connecticut. Once my husband accepted a new ministry assignment as the 17th Rector of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church it seemed as though time had slowed down and we’d never get to our desired destination from Florida to the northeast “New England”. So many blessings, prophetic encouragements and prayers were sandwiched together; it was no doubt that we were headed in an amazing direction. We’d known the hard knocks-was well acquainted with ministry hurdles, understood the signals, experienced the many past life lessons, endured much and was once again extremely thankful for the divine progression.  Oh to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living! As I’ve heard it said and do enjoy repeating it also: “For real, for real!” moving to Connecticutwas another Jeremiah 29:11 confirmation!
‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’ Jeremiah 29:11
We acknowledged that we were not only transitioning regionally, but mentally and spiritually to a new place in our lives, a place we’d never frequented.  But never the less it was HOME! And, yes it’s refreshing!
Joy erupted as we eagerly embraced the realization that it was time to head north “back home”.   Back home to the changing seasons of the northeast and a familiar urbane social and cultural terrain. Oh friends it was time! I am sure that my soul acknowledged that. “Yes, it is time to experience God anew.”
And of course we arrived in New England before our belongings and daily counted down the days when our truck load of furnishings would arrive. The house had an empty hollow “house echoing sound” and that was very distracting. After 2 weeks it struck me how we had adapted to having fewer material possessions. It was a new rhythm. As is said, “We didn’t miss a beat!” We gleefully sat at the kitchen bar to eat our meals, smiling and had fun jockeying for the thrift store treasure of the chair with matching ottoman. If I wanted to languish outdoors I’d sit on the comfy furnishings on the backyard deck. And in that time our focus shifted from our stuff to learning about our “new” New England surroundings, becoming acquainted with members of the church, learning about the active ministry events, connecting with neighbors and making friends. And when the moving van finally did arrive I realized that we could make it with fewer treasures unpacked.  Exhaling, I acknowledged that there was no need to open each and every box and/or hang our entire art collection. Our focus and ministry direction has shifted beautifully!
Once again God has done exceedingly more than we could imagine. Hearts are receptive and the anointed works are blossoming. The past month’s activities have reflected unspeakable joy which is captured in the photos below. There is a joy that is assured that God has planted us here because…” our desires are in agreement with His thoughts for us.” 1 John 5:15.
welcome home
Joy is spilling over because it’s good to be home…..
I’ve begun to weekly volunteer at St. Luke’s Clothes Closet. I look forward to being there. Truly the selecting, folding, sorting and arranging puts a smile on my face and lifts my spirit when the community comes for free clothing and household items. I eagerly greet and interact with them and sometimes help them with hunting for particular items. Often a conversation ensues and I realize they are in need of much more than the tangible. A word from the Lord often brings an assurance and a relief that they’ve come to the right place. As they search for items God is extending a helping hand through our volunteer services. On one particular day, I noticed a little girl “helping” her Mommy shop and I discovered a pink jacket asked her Mommy if she could have it and the child’s expression was absolutely precious! Permission was granted for me to share and photograph this blessed moment. I trust you are also smiling! Joy is contagious!
joy
The doors of the church are open! St. Luke’s Services is indeed a beacon of hope in our community – lifting, feeding, edifying loving and sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I’d like to think that ministry is an action word!
clothes closet
Our beloved and devoted parishioner Edward F. Mapp, Business Manager of St. Luke’s Steel Band has music in his heart! St. Luke’s Steel Band ministers throughout New England and the surrounding states! These stellar musicians bring tremendous  joy wherever they travel and perform.
 steel drum
Morning Glory! Breakfast partners: the Community Soup Kitchen and St. Luke’s Episcopal Church serving our guests-the children of God of course! It’s a meal that is certainly appreciated!
 community Soup Kitchen
Partnering with the community for creative fun and cultural ministry opportunities is another demonstration of God at work. He gives us the energy, creativity and our heart’s desire and before long paths are crossed and the fruit of partnerships beautifully blossom (i.e. St. Luke’s parishioners, Shop & Save, New Haven Dept. Of Recreation, Yale Health Systems, Anthony Thompson, The Diaper Bank, Fish, New Haven Free Public Library Stetson Branch, Hon. Jacqueline James, Alderwoman Ward 3, Yale University’s Dwight Hall tutors) with far reaching effects. I realize this is just the start of good things to come! St. Luke’s ministry bounty and community outreach is truly growing! And clearly God is touching hearts and directing our path!
jump rope
Langston Hughes
I am sure you agree that it’s a wonderful season where faith is abounding, joy has erupted and we can’t help but, smile! Thank you Lord for all you are doing!
love

Pastor Richard Meadows and Linda Mose Meadows, Inspirational Author
Shared in Love, Linda Mose Meadows; Blogger, Motivational Speaker and Inspirational Author of: Destined To Receive: Reflections and Devotionals Celebrating The Love of God (Createspace, 2013) and Blessedness of Believing  A Devotional Journey of Life’s Lessons and God’s Promises (Tate Publishing, 2007) 

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