Saturday, March 17, 2018

Nothing but sunshine

Tuesday, March 13, 2018
What a beautiful sunny week it's been. My brother's birthday has come and gone. W and I left a goofy message on his phone. How grateful I am for wonderful brothers. All 3 are uniquely gifted, have their own interests, follow their own calling, and love their families. My parents gave us a marvelous gift by not comparing us to our siblings or other people. So each one of us has followed their own path. But we belong together and love each other. Thanks, Mom and Dad.

I've finally fallen asleep at 6:30am but I wake just before my alarm goes off at 10:30. I trudge around the suite until I get out the door.

The first meeting of the day brings together almost a dozen of us, another "band of brothers (and sisters). Each is working in a non-profit or community group. We share what's important to us now ... and who is doing meaningful work in the city. I'm inspired and the food at the Ram is good, too. Verlon picks up my tab and I am reminded how generous the tribe of faith can be.

After an hour at home, I hear a knock on the door. DeAnn is a friend who works in another part of Asia. She's a schoolteacher - English for Chinese speakers - who's home on a year's furlough.

The grandkids join us and love her. They pray for the kids whose pictures are on DeAnn's phone, and she prays a blessing over them, too. I feel so privileged to introduce the grandchildren to someone who inspires them to serve others.

It's suppertime when the kiddos head upstairs and my friend says goodbye. I have a few assignments and before I know it, the day is done - it's 10pm and time to read a few chapters and then get to bed.

I was going to head to Canada to visit my folks but Mom gives me the day off. I had headaches off and on all day yesterday, and they're worse today. So it's a relief to decompress instead of driving.

I get the flat cleaned up and get dressed to go to the library. I last about 2 hours but the pain begins to subside by evenings. I'm a baby when things really hurt - and I pop a pill for relief.

Kim and I enjoy a few minutes together before our friends start arriving. I've forgotten the Malaysian tea, put beside the door to take along for her.

It's a great reconnection morning with Sue, Terry, and ... the lady from the next table. (I'll call her Iris.) "What a blessing to have girlfriends to meet with," she smiles at us as she sets down her coffee.

So we invite Iris to join us at our table. She talks about her wonderful grandkids. She's a super-grandma, raising the youngsters. She needs the wisdom of Solomon. At the end of the conversation, Iris adds her prayer requests to ours. Sue asks Jesus for his help in all we have mentioned, and with hugs, we say goodbye and go into the day.

W is back in town by 3: he takes the train and bus ($5 from the airport) and texts me for pickup at the Kenmore library. He had a great trip, working with a theology commission in Missouri. He respects his peers who examine scripture and culture together. They respond to issues and write papers filled with academic and pastoral concerns.

We meet our friends in Issaquah, at a #1-rated Indian restaurant. W worked with Dan and Don for years at the university, so we have lots of catching up to do. Their kids and grandkids are growing and doing interesting things. We see the passing of the years as the kids get older.

We gals are still active at various things: travels, care of family, involvement in the community. They're so young at heart!

The food is good but oh so bland after the spicy Sundanese food of Bandung. I take one plate through the buffet, scoop mango custard into a dessert bowl, and I'm done.

At the local art co-op up the street, the residing artist comes out from behind the counter to chat. She's a believer and encourages us to serve God through the arts.

Kinsey comes for a piano lesson before supper. I put on my teacher hat and go through time signatures, metronomes, and hand position. I used to do this for fun as well as money (33 years of it.) Kinsey plays along. She likes the forehead sparkles I've brought her - and isn't she cute? (I think Disney may be modeling their princesses from her.)

I'm in an online community reviewing a new book and organizing system called #SimpleOrganizing. I post a picture of our tiny, absolutely functional kitchen. The oven and fridge were given to us as part of a friend's remodel and the IKEA cabinets were $500 on Craigslist. W puzzled it all together in my design and it's just enough. It still works beautifully.

I open an envelope with a dated stamp: Exp 2015. Ach, let's try it. I sprinkle the borscht powder into water and cook it. It's just as good as ever. And the rich beet soup hits the spot.

In the evening, my head is in full ripple - the spasms are affecting my neck because I am wincing. Stop it! W takes me for a massage at Joy Spa (2X the amount and half the length as our neighborhood masseuse: $35 for 1 hour here vs. $15 for 2 hours in Bandung.) The massage is good and I am pain free at the spa. The nerve twinges resume in the car. Oh well.

Read more:
*O Lord my God, I cried to you for help, and you have healed me. Psalm 30:2
*The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.” Zephaniah 3:17
*Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life.”  John 8:12
*[When the man was healed, Peter said,] "Then know this, you and all the people of Israel: It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed. Jesus is 'the stone you builders rejected, which has become the cornerstone.’ Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:10-12
*In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to the one who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. Hebrews 5:7
Moravian Prayer: Lord, give us a new desire to share witness to your amazing love. Dispel all fear and doubt and fill us with a greater willingness to be vulnerable. Grant us the courage to connect with our neighbors, and compassion to listen to them.
Lord, bless our churches. Use our faith communities as true vessels of your creative power. May we seek your direction and guidance with new passion. Lead us with your pure light. Allow a new awareness of your dream for us to unfold. In your name. Amen.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Face to face time

Bedtime stories
Friday, March 8, 2018
We wake in our own bed. That's always a treat. We chose to keep the house when we left Seattle. The family of one of our kids lives upstairs and for us, the basement suite is a quick-to-clean and welcoming space. It's big enough to have people over and small enough to stay uncluttered. That is, when we put everything away.

Last night, the 3 older grandkids (6, 4, 2) wanted a sleepover. Looking at our calendar, there aren't that many open nights, so we had storytime, play 101 Dalmations (with attending screams as Cruella - moi - tries to skin the puppies as they jump from couch to table.) The kids fell asleep after 9, and woke this morning before 6. It's great to have time together. One kiddo talks constantly while sleeping and I'm a light sleeper. Oh well, W sleeps soundly - and I not at all. I make breakfast and upstairs they go because I have planned a morning treat for myself.
Our calm place to relax and feel at home
My treat? Julia and I meet for tea in Kirkland. This dear friend and I decompress and catch up on life - our third writing mate, Marj, died last year. She's sorely missed.

Some of the sweetest times here are when the grandkids come down for a visit. Afterward, I think about our lives when we raised our 4 kids. I pick up the grands' little trucks, stuffed animals, and games from the floor and behind the furniture. When everything is put away, I shudder at the mess I lived in while raising children. I never could get my act together enough to have a tidy house. And clutter undoes me completely; I can barely function. So I wonder what it was like for our kids, growing up in that chaos.

In the evening, friends Paul and Laura host a gathering. One of the couples used to live in Indonesia and went to language school in Bandung. They remember a lot about the city and have a photo album of their time, years ago.

Everyone shares their adventures; it's been years since we all met. Then W and I tell them something about the life we live overseas. It's great fun to sit around a table and hear how God cares for us and others. (W takes pictures on his phone and I forget to send them to myself immediately, which is why there are none here.)

W is off to coffee, so I tidy up and write an update to our partners. We are speaking together next weekend, so I have to write out what we want to say. We practise it together and it begins to morph into our actual talk. I also write a grant proposal - which gets lost when the computer closes down. Ugh.

On my way back from errands later in the day, I park the car along the street and walk a mile or more. The crocuses are just starting to bloom and a few daffodils poke out of the ground.

There's a Little Free Library on the street, so I snag a few novels to relax with in the coming days. I'll put them back before we go back home.

At 7am, we head 80 miles (130km) north to Bellingham. We haven't seen roads this empty since the last time we were on the West Coast.

It takes us 1.5 hours to drive to Hillcrest Chapel, where we enjoy worship and a talk by Christian Lindbeck. After, we have lunch at a great burger joint with Anh Johnson and Christian, catching up with what God is doing here and there.

Christian suggests we drive along the coastal road, adding a few minutes of stunning NW landscape to an otherwise boring freeway travels. The water glistens in the sunlight - we have had excellent sunny weather most of this trip to the Northwest.

I've been looking forward to this morning visit for months. Patti hosts us at her place, having moved back recently from California. The others are moving and in transition, so we have lots to talk about.

The beautiful setting is a refreshing boost. The food is delicious and healthy. I am reminded how most women process their lives with old friends. At this age, we're all caring for others and living many adventures along the way. One of the things I do and don't miss, not being fluent in Indonesian, is the level of detail in conversation. W and I tend to be more direct and to the point with our limited language skills over there. With fluency, we can describe and understand every emotion and process.

I have to head back so W can go on his appointments in the afternoon. He calls mid-afternoon to ask about whether we want to have a Happy Hour supper (cheaper smaller portions) at a local restaurant. I immediately think of Rich, who lives nearby. I send him a message, hoping we can see him. He calls us back and meets us in Bellevue. We stand in line for a half hour before catching up at the table.

Then we stroll through the mall together. W needs a new battery in an old watch from the Apple store, and it has taken them a few hours to install it. The guys chat while I pass through a few favorite shops. There's not a thing I want. Goods are costly, while our budget and luggage are limited. My eye lingers on a sweater-coat so I check the price tag. Um. No. $1400. Definitely no. My taste seems as expensive as ever.

We are home by 8pm and headed for bed. Lights go out by 10, but I suddenly get sharp stabbing pains in my scalp behind my right ear. "What on earth?" The fork-thrusts in my head are 12 seconds apart with an occasional skip. They last until 1:30am, when I can't stand it anymore. I raid W's "medicine" drawer up for a headache pill and gulp it down with some tap water. Tap water! drinkable. Seems incredible to us. I finally fall asleep.

The alarm goes off at 2:45am. One of our dumber ideas has been to have me drive W to the airport at 3, instead of him catching the airport van. I throw on a coat, grab my handbag, and he slings his 2 carryon bags over his shoulder. He drives us to SeaTac on the empty freeways. My head is throbbing to beat the band. We're too tired to exchange more than a few words on the way and a hug goodbye when I drop him off.

I drive back, trying to manage the pain. We saved a few dollars, had an extra hour together in the middle of the night, and I've lost 3 hours of sleep. My headache is utterly debilitating again.

I am wide awake when I get home at 4:30am. I decide to write until the second round of meds kick in. (It must be a family trait to work when we're sick. My mom used to clean the chandelier and polish silver when she had migraines. I'm a writer, so I write when I'm under the weather.) I rarely get headaches or use meds, so I'm whining to myself. After 6am, I finally ram earplugs into my ears and put on a facemask to keep light out. I lie in bed and think about sleep.

Oh wait. I have a noon meeting, which means setting another alarm for 10:30.

Read more:
*The Lord drew me up from the desolate pit, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure. Psalm 40:2

*Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but whoever takes crooked paths will be found out. Proverbs 10:9 NIV
*Jesus said, “Very truly, I tell you, the hour is coming, and is now here, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live.” John 5:25
Moravian Prayer: Lord, we seek assurance of your grace in our lives. Even when we do not notice, your grace is at work in us, through us and around us. Allow your grace to unfold fully. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Thursday, March 8, 2018

High tides and low

Tuesday, February 27, 2018
Kim and I have tea ready for our conversation at Starbucks before 7am. We're meeting in a neighboring city, closer to where she's headed this morning. Oh, to hug the neck of someone you like and respect ... that's a treat, beyond a virtual conversation across the ocean. She buys me a coaster to put under a drinking glass. Every time I look at it, I have to laugh. I'd join her gang anytime.

And look who we run into? Debbie and I send a quick selfie to Julia with a, "Where are you?!"

W heads out in the morning to go on an overnight boat trip ... except that our friend invites me along. The two guys wait patiently for a half-hour while I dress and throw together my overnight bag. They always have a lot to talk about so the conversation gets started as they sit together.

I love the boat and being on the water as much as they do. But first, we have to swing out of this narrow parking slip (see the little parking space below?)

past the highrise that borders the water (wonder how many times they've been hit by a prow)

and around a big yacht that sticks its stern to the edge of the dock (um, are you asking for trouble?)

 Terry's a pro - and we're soon on our way.

We pass the Sleepless in Seattle houseboat

on our way out through the locks into Puget Sound

The guys talk to a 75-year-old, whose new 35-footer is rafting us (tied to our boat, going through the locks). It's the man's first boat. He plans to bring it back up the coast later today with himself and his son, after picking up his son from a city south of Seattle.

The water level lowers and the gates open.

It's also the boat owner's first lesson in boating. The instructor aboard takes the boat through the locks, steering from the wheelhouse without demonstrating what to do. Our guys run around the sides, lowering bumpers to prevent being scraped. Apparently, the "new boat" doesn't have the right size bumpers and the other guy has no idea of protecting his hull (or ours).

"Oh no," Terry shakes his head. "I had 3 months of lessons before going solo. One lesson may not be the best thing for him or his boat."

Free of the locks, we're on our way to Poulsbo, a straight run across the Sound and up a wide channel, chugging against the tide. It's beautiful, the swells are moderate, and none of us is prone to seasickness. A lazy sea lion lounges on the waves as we reach the harbor.

We spend a leisurely afternoon in town, eating a late lunch at a Mexican hangout, looking through art galleries, and sharing dinner at a German restaurant. What a shock to see the empty main street as we walk back to the boat. Where is everyone? Oh wait. It's Poulsbo and it's already after 8pm.

A blue heron finds a resting spot in the dark. Can you spot him?
We sleep soundly. The water is quiet, the boat barely rocking.

In the morning, the barnacles, exposed on the posts at low tide yesterday, are submerged under high tide.

Sluy's Bakery is read for us when we walk off the dock and across a sliding ramp up to street level. We grab a boxful of favorites from the heaping displays of baked goods, heading back to the boat for breakfast tea and sweet pastries. 

It's raining hard and the guys insist I take the only umbrella even though I have a wool hat and raincoat. Once aboard, the boat is cozy.

Once under way, the rain splatters against the windows. It's warm inside the cabin but colder in the wheelhouse where the guys are.
The trip with the outgoing tide is quicker. Terry explains that we'll use half the fuel of yesterday when we were working against the current. 
The locks are just as interesting - with a fierce-looking dog on the back of the boat rafted to ours. "Good doggie. Don't worry, we won't jump down onto your deck to say hi." His eyes never leave us until they cast off and chug away.

The cherry trees are just starting to bloom along the locks. Seattle is beautiful in springtime if you don't have to go out in the rain ... We moor at the Salmon House. What? We're eating again? YUMMMM YUM.

Read more:
*You save humans and animals alike, O Lord. Psalm 36:6
*I am going to gather them from the farthest parts of the earth, among them the blind and the lame, those with child and those in labor, together; a great company, they shall return here. Jeremiah 31:8
*Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Matthew 6:26
*Jesus said, “I do the will of him who sent me and to complete his work. Do you not say, ‘Four months more, then comes the harvest’? But I tell you, look around you, and see how the fields are ripe for harvesting.” John 4:34-35
*Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for each other, love one another deeply, from the heart. For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God. 1 Peter 1:22-23 NIV
Moravian Prayer: God of compassion, pour into us today a new desire to notice the least, the last and the broken in our midst. Help us to see with renewed insight, the opportunities that abound to partner with you to help all who are in need.
Jesus, our brother, help us to remember in this moment your deep love for the world. Help us resist fear, and to turn from the temptation to hate anyone. Renew in us the will to seek reconciliation with all people. Amen.

Monday, March 5, 2018

Meanwhile, on the other side of the world ...

Sunday, February 25, 2018
It's brunch time! We host "thinking" brunches for 40 people, a few times a year. It gives those who join us time around the table to relax and talk about a subject of interest. This time it's all about family.
The IES Bandung team - brunch hosts
Vieras' have guests from Singapore, who help arrange flowers for the table. The whole team pitches in to make a pretty setting according to Claudia's imaginative decor.

Dr Hanna tells us about reviving a family tradition: after Chinese New Year was banned, her father decided to be culturally compliant. By the time the celebration was allowed again in Indonesia, her family had a precious grandbaby. They decided that it would be fun to serve traditional foods and enjoy the customs again. Her grandson loves getting his "red envelopes" of money, the response to a polite child who wishes blessings on the elders.

Goofing around
Josh talks about "the friend who sticks closer than a brother." What does it mean to be part of God's family? How can we be good family members to those around us?

Around the tables, we talk about our families, our traditions, and our friendships. And we write our thoughts on the wall, a long strip of positive tributes to those we love and those who love us.

Claudia has asked me to bring hats and a big picture frame, props for some funny photos. She's brought sunglasses, quote bubbles, and other goodies. It's a lively time, great fun all around.

We plan time from 10-11:30, but the last guests are still hanging out at 3pm.
Wrapping up with a prayer
The study gathers on the porch before a few of us head upstairs for the team meeting.

It's packing day because we're headed to Canada and the USA tomorrow. W and I need sponsors to help us launch a gathering this fall - and our current partners want updates on the past year.

By the time we talk to everyone who will stay at the house, arrange hosting for the meetings that continue in our absence, decide how to pay ongoing expenses, and take care of other details, it's late in the day.

I've been cooking everything in the fridge and avoiding the grocer for a week. I go through what's left and show the helper what she can take home.

We're on the road by 6:30. Traffic to Jakarta is excellent, so by 9:30, we're at our first meeting.

That lasts through lunch - we love the IES staff, who make us feel welcome anytime we drop in. We talk over what's happening with our boss and get his suggestions on a forward trajectory.
Notice anything different about his map of the world, posted in Jakarta?
We're at the hotel by late afternoon. As usual, W walks around the neighborhood to find out what's nearby. And equally predictably, I have a nap. It's going to be a long day tomorrow.

Is this the best trip ever? At 4am, we hop on the free hotel shuttle to the airport. Our flight leaves shortly after 6am, but it's a smooth 7 hours to Tokyo. We put 2-3 miles on our shoes in the international terminal, buying a few treats and some short ballpoint pens for our kids. (I stock up on these stubby little Zebra pens, which tuck easily into a shirt pocket or memo pad, each time through Japan.)

We're on a final flight a few hours later, a mere 9 hours to Seattle. W did well, planning the cheapest way to get back! Whaaaat? We've landed already? It sometimes is a 30+ hour ordeal of 3 long flights, airport layovers, and customs hassles. This time, it feels quick - plus I had 3 naps on the first flight, which helped.

Merlin's at the curb waiting for us, and drops us off at home. (Bonus: he stocked the car for us with salted pretzel chocolates and sparkling orange juice.) How we appreciate the friendships of long years. He and W look like brothers - I'm caught by the comparison each time the guys get together.

The shoe tray becomes a truck playground.
The grandkids attack us with fervor. Oh, how good to feel their thin young arms wrap around us! And our new granddaughter is a pearl. She's oblivious to the racket of her 3 cheerful older siblings, crying only for food, sleep, and poop.

By the time we toddle off to bed in the evening, we make a few phone calls, unpack, plug in the electronics to charge, and are totally wiped out.

W's up early, writing emails and grading papers from a class in Singapore. We pick up a friend's car (thanks, Steve and Patti!) and drive to a meeting at the NWMN office. About 30 of our colleagues are discussing various ways to connect God, life, and neighborhoods. I get to hug a few beloved friends and mentors.

We agreed to watch the grandkids weeks ago, before this professional meeting was on our calendar. So W, the only one with a driver's license, heads back before dismissal. I get a ride home with Dan, my former boss and mentor. It's exciting to hear what's happening in his circles - he and his organization partner with us as well.

By the time I get back, it's afternoon. 15 friends come over. They have a monthly Thursday meeting, which we used to attend. Some of them support us, pray for us, and still keep in touch while we're away. How wonderful to see them in person.

They bring snacks and fruit; we make tea and coffee. W and I tell a few stories and the group shares some prayer requests. We are thankful together: one of our friends fell and bruised face and arms but broke no bones. (Such significant mercies deserve prayers of gratitude, right?)

We're up once at night, but I fall fast asleep again ... until 11:30am. Oh my! Half the day is gone. (Especially because Indonesian days start at 5:30 or 6am.)

New granddaughter - precious Baby Mak
And we head to the DMV to pay $20 for another license. The guy behind the counter is funny - and makes it easy. Like last year, I have again left my driver's license in Indonesia! Ugh. I'm glad to be able to drive, though it's an annoyance to have to fund another card. We'll have to leave a copy here, I guess.

I wrap up a class I taught online. It's good to finish such things. So much is delayed when we lecture: after we study for a few months, we spend a week or two with students in the classroom, grade their papers during the week and the next week, and then we wait for the final papers to come in. It's always a relief to press "send" on the final grades, even though the class has long since come and gone.

This afternoon, I'm sent the final copy of a Bhutanese student's paper that slipped through the cracks at his institution (though he handed it in on time). That class has to wait until we return for their grades: I couldn't wrap up grading until the last paper came in - and now I don't have all the paperwork with me.

In the morning, W goes for coffee with his Saturday morning guys. By 9:30, we're off to Canada to visit W's family and mine. His mom has made a delicious chicken noodle soup (ah, traditional European taste, which we are craving!) The lunch table is heaped with side dishes as we sit and talk with his sister and brother-in-law. It's good to catch up on what they and their kids are doing, as well as share our own adventures.

Then W resets his mom's IPad, does a few chores, and give her a bottle of stomach bitters and an Indonesian mumu (remember those bright-colored housedresses from Hawaii in the 70s?) to wear in the summertime. They are cool and loose, easy to wear.

We are at my parent's place for supper, true Canadian pizza from a local shop. DEEElicious - W was crazing N American pizza. We hang around and talk until late. I love that my folks really listen to our stories and pray for our safety and wellbeing.

Throwback to the 1990s
Dad's transferred his Super8 (and other cameras) films on his computer, and W snags a copy for us to enjoy later. I can hardly believe how busy life was with 4 kids: I took them all over the place as homeschoolers, including music lessons and performances. Makes me tired just to look at it. Mom and Dad often took one or two of our kids for a week or two at a time, coming to Seattle for them and returning them afterward.

Who gets to spend so much time with their Grandma and Grandpa?! Hardly anyone, unless a family is dysfunctional and the grandparents have no choice. But I marvel at the energy and love my folks had for us ... and how they invested themselves in our children. Our kids love and appreciate the extended family because of it.
Our youngest with his great-grandma (my dad's mom)

My parents are becoming members of a church they've attended for 4 years. They're dressed up and we're proud to be cheering them on.

I see some friends who grew up with us in our teens. We talk to a few of them before the gathering disperses.

My brother's family joins us for lunch - what cute kids! and from our end of the table, they seem very well behaved and polite. Norm's grandbaby is adorable - tiny, 6 weeks old, and cute as a button.

After lunch, Dad drives to the next suburb to show us how my brother and his wife promote their business (digital signage). We get a few more hours with my parents, laughing our way through old family picture albums. Mom was a grama-ratzi, according to one of our boys. Yup, there are about a dozen photo albums. I snap some pictures of the kids with my phone, to pass along later.

We're back in Seattle by dark. I'm glad to be driving again. What a relief to be behind the wheel, which everyone takes for granted here. (W occasionally drives through the traffic madness in Indonesia when the driver is off on weekends or evenings. I drove a few times when we moved to Indonesia. That made W too nervous so I handed the keys over to him. I read on my phone or Kindle if he drives.)

It's our first day off in a long while. Early in the morning, W drops paper and cardboard at the recycling station while I catch up on email.

Before noon, we drive into Seattle. W grabs a McD burger while I'm at a free "play day" at Daniel Smith Art. DS is one of my go-to places when we get back. Their demos often include the chance to try new art supplies.

Today, we're experimenting with Caran D'Ache colored pencils - oh the pleasure! We have Dicks Burgers on the way home.

My two art pages are so bad I toss them into the garbage when we reach our driveway.

I try to read - but am so sleepy I zone out for a long nap. Then we play with the kids, eat supper, and it's time for some writing before bed.

Read more:
*Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts.  Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates. Deuteronomy 6:4-9 NIV
*God knows what is in the darkness, and light dwells with him. Daniel 2:22
*All these things my hand has made, and so all these things are mine, says the Lord. But this is the one to whom I will look, to the humble and contrite in spirit, who trembles at my word. Isaiah 66:2
*When Jesus saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Matthew 9:36
*Jesus said, “I have come as light into the world, so that everyone who believes in me should not remain in the darkness.” John 12:46
Moravian Prayer: Great Redeemer, move in our midst today. Bring to life new energy and courage. Empower us to reach beyond ourselves to connect your grace to the needs around us. May we seek new ways for your reconciliation to unfold in our neighborhoods. 
O Lord, grant us a new spirit for work and growth today. May our hearts and minds be centered on the direction your Spirit seeks to guide us. May the work of our hands, our hearts and our minds please you this day. Amen.