Ramblings from the Cove...
By Lars Gren
Greetings from the Cove! For those who are saying, “I’ve read this before—why just hit the disappear button and save time.
Yes, Christmas is over and our hope is that you had a joyous one with family and friends. Now may the New Year and new decade bring the goodness of the Lord to you day by day. In the past, we have waited until after Christmas to put together a sort of annual letter with some of the antidotes that occurred during the year. However, now that we do not travel for engagements anymore, there is very little that is happening and so I thought about listing ailments, operations, broken bones, replacements parts, and whatever else that seems to be of interest once seventy-five is in the past and the run for eighty has begun. That would be an even duller letter than the previous ones when we had a bit of excitement in our lives. All of that to say that here is our year in abbreviated form.
It was a cold winter, the winter of ’09. So to escape, we barged in on Burt Elliot (Jim Elliot’s brother) and his wife, Colleen, in Peru – Trujillo to be exact – where they have been missionaries for sixty-one years and are ongoing in the work. Other than spending time with them reading books together, watching a few old DVDs, trying to pick up a bit of Spanish, and seeing the scope of their work, the high point was – at least for me – having cabrito which was a word I learned quickly because I do enjoy goat. Right, not very spiritual but I was speaking of food (which, after all, is a somewhat necessary habit and, for me, a most enjoyable one).
In March, we made our semi-annual trip to Dallas where we enjoyed the company of homeschooled young ladies who come there for an eight-week course. EXCEL teaches the young ladies Christian ethics such as standing alone, guy/girl relationships, basic medical and nutrition information, basic skills including cake decorating, sewing, calligraphy, some emergency training and first aid/CPR, and an overarching emphasis on Scripture memorization and spiritual growth. We are into the 13th or 14th year of doing this, but instead of Elisabeth’s speaking five times, we view some videos from her past retreats and sit and enjoy the meals with the young ladies.
June came and passed without anything except Elisabeth’s fractured femur. August arrived, no special items to do except for recovery from Elisabeth’s five broken bones in the foot. Yes, both from falls. The first, tripping on my foot ( Norwegian trait large feet) as she left me after offering her a drink of water in the bathroom causing her to crash on the tile floor. The second one—tripping on the leg of a day bed—which didn’t move—and down on carpet with same leg but on this fall the foot went under her and “snap.” Thankful to God that first break was not affected. In both I was two to three feet away from her but could not catch her. One goes down with lightening speed.
In October, we got back on track and went to Branson, MO, for three days of first-class music sponsored by a Colorado Springs ministry, Music Evangelism Foundation. We had a book table and Elisabeth had a great time enjoying the people who came and still remembered her. November arrived which was time for our second Dallas trip and now we have passed our Thanksgiving days, which we had at Elisabeth’s only sister’s home about four miles down the road from us. The guest of honor was a stuffed 28 lb turkey. By the time 24 people finished dinner, the turkey was trim and the people were stuffed. Lord willing, Christmas will be dinner at Tom & Lovelace Howard. And it came to pass!—arrived at two thirty and home about six. Only twelve there—nice time and good meal and did not overeat. And there we have 2009 in the past.
Whether your year was sweet or bitter sweet we hope that Christmas was Merry with the thought of the gift of God that John, reveals so simply and tells us of our only hope that there is in life as he writes in 1:14 “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” The only reason for this being a Merry Christmas.
If you read this in 2010, why count it as early for the coming Season and as for me the only repeat I’d rather not do again would be another June and July of ’09.
And that’s it from the Cove.
God bless y'all,