We are so Blessed
By PMA Sandy Terry, member of Salem Lutheran Church, Fremont, NE
Does it mean I am lucky to live in the United States, have a house to live in, money in the bank, clothes to wear, and plenty of food in my pantry?
Does it mean that I have raised two wonderful children who have received an education and are gainfully employed?
Being blessed could mean a variety of things from health to relationships. The Merriman Webster dictionary defines blessed as enjoying happiness or to bring pleasure, contentment or good fortune. Yet scripture shows that blessing is anything God gives that makes us fully satisfied and draws us closer to Jesus.
Using that definition then, I can truly say I am blessed. There are many days when all I am able to do is to thank God for all that he has given me and pray that I can be a good steward of those blessings.
Several years ago, I attended my first Global Mission Event and began to have the urge to travel internationally. In 2010, I was able to satisfy it when I got the chance to travel with the Nebraska Synod on a Vision Trip to the Northern Diocese of Tanzania. I would never have dreamt that this trip would be the start of an amazing relationship. The group was able to attend the graduation of a class at the Masama Girls School. It was during this visit that a couple of students served as our personal guides around the school showing us their classrooms and what they were studying. As a result of this visit, one of those girls and I began to correspond and I am now very proud to say that Rosemary is my adopted African daughter. I am beyond blessed to have her and her extended family as part of my Nebraska family.
My home congregation offers items from two local grocery stores as part of a food recovery program to the community. As a volunteer during those distributions, I have been blessed to have the good fortune to call one of the participating families my friends. I would not have been blessed to have them in my life if I did not volunteer there each week. This family lives in the area of Fremont that was affected by the March 2019 flooding and were displaced due to the flood. They received considerable damage to their home as the flood waters moved in and around their home. In spite of losing everything in the basement of their home they continued to be more than willing to assist in picking up food at the two grocery stores. They also are available to assist in a variety of ways in other areas at church. It has been a blessing to develop a relationship with them and assist them financially when they needed major work on their car.
Being blessed to me means finding the joy in helping others, developing relationships, as well as sharing from my heart and resources. A friend recently gave me, of all things, a cutting board with the following written on it and I feel this sums up what it means to be blessed:
Blessed is she who daily imparts nurturing care and kindness of heart.
Blessed is she whose goodness and grace wrap other hearts in a warm embrace.
Blessed is she whose unselfish love is a shining reflection of God above.
Be a blessing and you will reap way more than you give!