Family of Hope House Church March 2012
In the introduction to Amish farmer David Kline’s latest book, “Letters From Larksong,” are these words by his friend, poet Wendell Berry:
.... my friend David Kline told me,
"It falls strangely on Amish ears,
This talk of how you find yourself.
We Amish, after all, don't try
To find ourselves. We try to lose
Ourselves"--and thus are lost within
The found world of sunlight and rain
Where fields are green and then are ripe,
And the people eat together by
The charity of God, who is kind
Even to those who give no thanks.
In my old age I’ve been thinking a lot about the Amish/Anabaptist focus on choosing to lose one’s life, as taught by Jesus, rather than spending our energies trying to preserve as much of it as we can. This means seeking to live a life of “Gelassenheit,” a German word describing a spirit of yieldedness that results in engaging in humble service to others rather than in a lifetime pursuit of domination and accumulation.
My Amish mother, known throughout our rural community as “Aunt Mary,” was a good example of such a life. It wasn’t uncommon for her to go help a sick neighbor, a new mother or a needy friend at a moment’s notice, or to provide hospitality around our dining room table for all kinds of guests, even from our meager means.
Maybe life really is meant to be a gift to be given away. In the end, we have to lose it all anyway, whether we choose to or not. So why not be intentional about it, experience joy in giving away our gifts and assets to make the world a happier and better place?
And then just die peaceful and well spent. - Harvey Yoder
Notes, prayers and praises
* FOR UPDATES ON FAMILY OF HOPE services and other information, log on to http://familyofhopehousechurch.blogspot.com.
* PRAY FOR MICHAEL RIVIERA-WENGER, who has been blessed with some improvement in his condition.
MARCH BIRTHDAY BLESSINGS to Ruth Stauffer 3/28, and Elianah Zhou 3/25, c/o Jack Zhou, 5615 W. Wren Avenue, Visalia, CA 93291.
* BE PREPARED FOR SOME CONGREGATIONAL GOAL SETTING at our March 11 service with Skip and Carol Tobin of Virginia Mennonite Missions.
March lectionary readings
4 Psalm 22:23-31 Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16 Romans 4:13-25 Mark 8:31-38
11 Psalm 19 Exodus 20:1-17 1Corinthians 1:18-25 John 2:13-22
18 Psalm 107:1-3, 17-22 Numbers 21:4-9 Ephesians 2:1-10 John 3:14-21
25 Psalm 51:1-12 Jeremiah 31:31-34 Hebrews 5:5-10 John 12:20-33
March services worship at 4 pm, meal at 6
4 Location: Guy & Margie Vlasits 3448 Caverns Dr., K’town 908-0391
Worship and Sharing: Guy and Margie Vlasits
Bible Study: Harvey Yoder Carry-in Meal
11 Location: Family Life Resource Center 273 Newman Ave. 432-0531
Worship and Sharing: Skip and Carol Tobin
Bible Study and church goal-setting: Skip and Carol
Carry-in Finger Foods Meal
18 Location: James & Ruth Stauffer 1250 Parkway Dr 574-6141
Worship and Sharing: James Stauffer
Bible Study: Paul Swarr Carry-in Meal
25 Location: Susan Campbell 1361 Lincolnshire Dr 22802 564-1524
Worship and Sharing: Susan Campbell
Bible Study: Dick Dumas Carry-in Meal