Guest meditation by Nancy Anderson
On January 23rd I attended the funeral of a work colleague. We had worked together in the early days of our video careers and crossed paths and worked together many, many times since. Tim’s death was very sudden – a heart attack at age 53 – and as he was an avid runner his death was completely unexpected and shocking. It’s really hard to make sense of something like this. Why? Why did this happen? He was a loving husband and wonderful father. How could this be? It was so sad.
Tim was a believer. His pastor – his friend – talked of his great faith in God and love for Jesus, his upbringing in a Christian home, his involvement in his church. I did not know that! How did I not know that? His pastor stated that many people, especially those co-workers or clients that Tim worked with, might not have known the depths of his faith either. It’s not something he would have talked a lot about, especially at work. However, Tim had had an impact. By the show of people who attended the service and packed the large church, the Pastor noted, it was evident that Tim had touched so many lives and meant so much to so many.
In chatting with people afterwards, I noticed that there seemed to be a certain joy, of all things, at this event. In the long line of people telling Tim’s wife and young adult children how much Tim was loved and appreciated. In her face as she heard those words. In old friends, old colleagues, old clients – greeting each other with smiles and hugs and laughing conversations. Any old competitiveness or rivalry that might have resurfaced was non-existent. People were glad! They seemed happy! They seemed grateful to be there and to see and greet one another. One old work friend wondered “what would my kids say about me?” Yep. I think we all wondered that about ourselves. In the service, the pastor talked awhile on gratitude. We don’t know how long we have he said, so be grateful and thankful for each and every day we are given and for those we love and care about. I think we all listened.
I attended the funeral the day before Holy Yoga class on Thursday. I didn’t want to provide the meditation for that class on the 24th. Too many jumbled thoughts. What would I say? I didn’t really know. It took me another week of reflection and what came to mind the most was gratitude. Yes, absolutely gratitude for my family, my friends, for all the blessings I’ve been given. But I also was reminded in reviewing scripture, what a wonderful practice of cultivating a thankful and grateful heart and mind for God and the life that I have in Him.
The Lord is my strength and my shield;
My heart trusts in Him,
and I am helped.
My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to Him in song.
A Prayer of Gratitude by Debbie McDaniel
Thank you for your amazing power and work in our lives.
Thank you for your goodness and for your blessings over us.
Thank you that you are able to bring hope through even the toughest of times, strengthening us for your purposes.
Thank you for your great love and care.
Thank you for your mercy and grace.
Thank you that you are always with us and will never leave us.
Thank you for your incredible sacrifice so that we might have freedom and life.
Forgive us for when we don’t thank you enough,
For who you are,
For all that you do,
For all that you’ve given.
Help us set our eyes and our hearts on you afresh.
Renew our spirits, fill us with your peace and joy.
We love you and we need you this day and everyday.
We give you praise and thanks, for you alone are worthy!
In Jesus name – Amen
Thank you, Nancy, for this beautiful meditation!
Date: Jan. 31, 2019
Photo credit: Joshua Earle on Unsplash