The battlefield

It has occurred to me just today that there is a reason military servants retire after 20 years. They are much like athletes in that their years of fitness for the job are circumscribed by the limitations of the human structure: physical, mental and emotional. I leave the spiritual dimension out because the spirit transcends the body proper. Anyway, I thought of this as I was reading Called to Controversy and I got to the period of time in Moishe Rosen’s life when his followers were no longer single young adults, but were married couples having children. In the 1970’s he was mentor to the generation of youth who became the force behind Jews for Jesus. In the 1980’s, however, the seasoned staff had their own identities and their own strategies and were mentoring their own staff. The organizational leaders, shaped by Moishe’s mentoring, forged ahead as their mentor left the streets to join other seasoned organizational leaders in configuring global evangelistic campaigns.

Reading this chapter in the book made me think about my own life and how I am experiencing some of the same transitions that Moishe had experienced. I talked to young Ashley after free clinic yesterday afternoon. She had just begun a supervisory position in home health and was feeling uncertain. Linking her with another manager was key, and that happened. Another mentee, who was a former student of mine, is in Uganda giving her life to help the Invisible People and I can help her with fundraising. Another is in Hong Kong teaching Spanish, French and music in an international school and loves to show college students how they can have a cross-cultural semester there. With herniated discs in my back at age 60, I can not even think of sitting in a plane to go half way around the world, but all these young women can, and are. They send me e-mails and tell me of their adventures. I pray for them and I support them monetarily, but I am not “on the ground” so I have little to do with their daily operations. They are now mentoring others and I am “friend.” I am happy with that. The battle is still great and I have retired from active duty, but I have been in the battle and know the way to fight the battle. I have a large network of colleagues in key places of authority who know how to get things done quickly and efficiently. As a parish nurse, I now find myself in the war room pouring over the “maps,” coordinating resources for those on the front lines and offering words of encouragement when the battle gets long and hard.

Today I relished these words from Isaiah 8 in my early morning devotions

11 The Lord has given me a strong warning not to think like everyone else does. He said,

12 “Do not be afraid that some plan conceived behind closed doors will be the end of you.

13 Do not fear anything except the Lord Almighty.
He alone is the holy one.

If you fear Him, you need fear nothing else.
14     He will keep you safe.

And so I am off with Cherie to meet with the pastor of a mega-church in the county to introduce him to Parish Nursing. Cherie has a word from the Lord for him. I have the strategic plan. Please pray.

Battle ready in Him,



9 comments on “The battlefield

  1. Andrea Dawn,

    Thanks for praying. The meeting went very well. In fact, the church has an assistant pastor coming “on board” in July who is to be the “care” pastor. They want to intentionally build care connections in the congregation and are already primed for this ministry. We’ve been given authority to write on health topics for the newsletter, make and put up posters on health topic, do screening blood pressures after services, etc. Today I will work on a dehydration poster to post by the snacks Cherie gets people to donate for the team working on the installation of the playground.

    God is good,

  2. I loved that phrase in your verse today. . . “not to think like everyone else does.” You are so right — as we get older, we change in what we can do. It takes being able to see as HE sees, and to think as HE thinks in order to be fully used by Him, even in our older years. No, I don’t think I’m cut out to lead a youth group anymore, or teach primary department age kids, or do playground duty. And I can remember so, so many older women in the church saying, “I’m old, I’ve done my duty, I’m now retired and let the younger ones do it.” It always sounded to me that they were building their caskets in their workshops!!!! I think in the past year, I have had to have an engine overhaul with parts that help me think differently. Yes, I still have the same gifts, the same talents, and the deep soul of me is still me, but how I use all this seems to be shown to me in different lights, through different lenses. We take all that we knew, all that we found out that we didn’t know and now know, all the mistakes we made, all our scars, and lump it into a whole new type of ministry. New to us, but it’s what He was leading us to all this time. Yes, we all had the duties and responsibilities of youth and middle age — making a living, education, raising kids, keeping house, etc. But now, here we are, OLD! And we hold in our hands and hearts treasures beyond anything any of the younger ones can possibly have. We, who have walked with Him and proven Him trustworthy and faithful, we have even more of an advantage and more of a reason not to fearHis leading in our lives. So. . . I pray for you, Dawn, and for Cherie, and for all of us as we seek His face and form new strategies and work towards that “Well done, thou good and faithful servant!”

  3. you know what I find really lovely. Not that Laska the Love Kitty is sitting at the window meowing at a bird who doesn’t realize how close to death he is –it’s that frustrated kind of meowing cat a cat does – I used to think was my cats talking to the bird – but it’s actually frustration, knowing they can’t reach their prey – anyway – what I find really lovely is that I’ve been falling behind on my blog reading – and you were actually reading MY blog – and leaving a comment – at the very same time I was here. I know that because I got e-mail confirmation of your comment – and read the e-mail version of it – while I was actually here!.


    anyway, sorry – I had to leave for a minute to take a picture of Alaska and the bird – and I couldn’t find my camera – but I found it just in time and got a couple of shots – yay me – anyway – so where was I…

    Oh, I think that’s really nice that we were on each other’s blogs at the very same exact time – although I’ve been here much longer than you, because I have pictures to take 🙂 (and the bird actually flew away and came back – birds!!!)

    anyway – what else I was thinking was this – I really need an e-mail from you to fill me in on all of your work stuff – I get a hint here – but I want to know more details friend – after all, I have done all that praying and stuff. God bless and keep you – you little mentor you!

    PS say hi to the muttlies

    • Craig,

      I love that you came here and spent some time…writing a little, watching Laska and the bird, taking photos (AFTER you looked for and found your camera), and, finally, finished your comment. It is a lovely spot to spend a moment–right between Cora and Sylvia. It was also a wonderful point in time: I was at your comment column at the same time you were at mine. Kindda Star Trekky, huh?

      God bless you, my good Man. If you read the past couple of weeks of blogs you will have the story of the work situation. It’s not just my story, either. If you also read the comments, you will see how it swept through many of us. Let’s just say God is setting up a Parish Nursing program in the Williamsport District of the United Methodist Church here. God gave financial backing, a partner, supportive pastors and churches and time.

      Thanks for praying. It was very key, and thanks for continuing to be here…and bringing Laska along,

  4. in the war room pouring over the “maps”….God equips His people. Your present position is God placed; as He sees the needs He always fulfills.
    I really loved your relishing…these words: Do not fear anything except the Lord Almighty. He alone is the holy one.
    If you fear Him, you need fear nothing else.
    He will keep you safe.
    The King goes before us into the battle ! Praise His Holy Name!

  5. You know, Susan, a prompt for Scavenger Hunt Sunday this week is “facing your fears.” I have been hunting all week for a picture for that prompt. I truly have no fear, except one that would engulf me if I went up high on something. That is a phobia over which I seem to have no control. Perhaps I will have to get on the top run of a step ladder for that picture, ha!

    Truly, if you fear the Lord, you need fear nothing else. I travel safely as I leave my house. I do not fear what man can do to me. I have lived in that fear the past couple of years (fear of losing my job, fear of making the wrong moves so that I’d lose my job, fear of losing my health insurance, etc etc. Well, I lost my job and it’s not a big deal). It was much adieu about nothing. I will not go back there. My trust is in the Lord.

    Have a great day with the goats,

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