Monday, February 06, 2006

on the mend

I have missed contributing to the blogosphere these past days because of commitments within the church and beyond and an unexpected illness that I am recovering from. Thanks for your patience and for visiting the site. When there is nothing new posted, I hope you will listen to some of the inside and outside voices recommended here, read a few of the texts and visit some of the important places.

At the end of last weekend I went down to Myrtle Beach to lead a group of about 60 United Methodist pastors from the South Carolina Conference in a two day exploration of Wesley's spiritual practices. These are noted in my book, A Way of Life In The World (Abingdon). It was a fast and fun couple of days, relaxing in some ways and yet calling forth lots of energy and attention. I was impressed with the community that gathered there and with their leaders. The weather also permitted a couple of walks on the beach, and my wife and I found a little hole-in-the-wall for lunch in Marion, South Carolina on the way home that I would definitely seek out again!

On Wednesday I led a discussion of What's So Amazing About Grace? in the evening, and on Thursday morning I taught Disciple IV. After teaching I began to feel ill and this was my experience for the remainder of the day. I won't go into the details, but the day ended in the emergency room, and continued for a couple of days in the hospital, as I was connnected to an iv and took some heavy duty antibiotics. I came home Saturday afternoon, and made arrangements not to be in church on Sunday (which I deeply missed, but I knew also that I had nothing physically or spirituallty to share). I am back to normal physicallly, I think, but the energy level returns slowly. I have to choose to do the really important things. People are both welcoming me back and urging me to take it easy.

So, the unexpected hiatus comes in the midst of winter activity. To compound it all, our older daughter leaves for China tomorrow morning, for six months. She will study and do an internship there. We are excited for her, and we will miss her profoundly.

Not much theological wisdom here, just life as it passes along, the planned and unplanned, for better or worse, in sickness and in health. Throw in the Super Bowl, a returning appetite, and getting to watch three hours of Taylor Branch on CSPAN's Book-TV. At the end of a long day I feel tired. Tomorrow I will feel better. Pray for my health and strength, for our daughter as she flies away for a time, and for our family as we let her go.


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