A number of good things have happened recently.
Last night at the Tuesday Evening Meal and Ministry, there were ten of us who participated in a lively Bible study of 1 Samuel 4:12-22. We had a newcomer last night, who had just moved into the neighborhood. When I asked her where she was from, she told me Eritrea, and I responded that I had lived there for a few years as a child. She kept asking me if I knew other people in the area from Eritrea or Ethiopia and I explained that I did not. She was the first person from Eritrea that I have met in over 40 years.
We have been reading straight through the book of 1 Samuel on Tuesday nights. Last night we read the story of the death of Eli and his daughter-in-law. These are grim stories that can tend to fuel the false understanding that God as described in the Hebrew Bible is more about wrath than God described in the New Testament. I encouraged the participants to see these stories in the context of the prophecy of judgment and promise that was given in 1 Samuel 2:27-36. The deaths of Eli's two sons on the same day were predicted as the sign for the whole prophecy, but the promise in the prophecy was that God would raise up a faithful priest. So the calamitous events that occurred were the fulfillment of prophecy but also the basis for trusting that the promise was sure. We ended up having a vigorous discussion of the meaning of troubles in our own lives, and how we deal with them.
This morning I had my third successive session in the Maintenance Program following my Cardiac Rehabilitation program at AVH. I had been worried that my routine of getting exercise might be lost once I finished rehab. The maintenance program is at a different time, but I have now succeeded in doing a week of maintenance at the new time. I hope I have this routine well-established now.
This afternoon when I went past the James E. Wolfe Skatepark, it was open and filled with young people using the equipment. It looked like the sign was still on the gate, but with the gate open the sign only faced the inside of the park.