It is one of those days, where your mind rushes everywhere but your heart is calm and there is Peace beyond measure. Many reports to be written – the life of a minister in January and February of every year. This year it is not just Annual General Meetings’ reports but also student supervision reports for the beautiful student minister I have been accompanying since March 8, 2019.
Since my amazing experience with my supervising minister back in 2009, I have wanted to become a supervising minister myself and in 2016, I had the privilege to be able to take the necessary course and get certified. Hence in the last three years I have had the privilege to accompany two amazing individuals. The United Church of Canada is so blessed to have such ministers to serve God through the UCC’s Communities of Faith.
I am so compelled to write these words tonight, because there are days that stand out because of special birthdays or anniversaries, but there are other days that become historical on their own. Today, January 22, 2020 will stand out for me as a historical day – because I made a right turn instead of left and my heart was filled with Joy.
I was to have a luncheon meeting with someone, but they called early in the morning to let me know that they had to go to a funeral and lunch would not be possible… But I still decided that I will go out and do whatever else I needed to do for today. I could have gone to Perth instead of Smiths Falls and I told Gary when I left the house, “I am not sure where to go exactly but I will text you wherever I get… “
On the drive to Perth or Smiths Falls, the latter became today’s destination. I got to do the list of things that needed my attention, and then I texted Gary asking him where he would suggest me to go for lunch. He suggested Pizza Hut, as we have not been there for at least two years. I told him that I thought he would say that, as we were talking about it on Monday. So, I chuckled… But when I arrived at the entrance of the parking lot, my gut feeling said go to Harvey’s – I thought, oh yeah, I have not been there for a long time as well… Been trying to stay away from fast food places – but something pulled me there. So, instead of going left to Pizza Hut, I went right to Harvey’s – they are both in the same parking lot.
Still, my mind is cloudy and busy, but my heart is calm beyond my comprehension. I went in, ordered my lunch, received it and as I was picking up my tray, someone came next to me and said, “Rev. Takouhi, how nice to see you!” I was speechless. You see, I have been thinking about a congregant for the last two weeks, whom I have not seen for at least six months – and somehow my Outlook has lost her e-mail address. Because I have been drowning in report writing, I had not had a chance to ask someone for the e-mail address – this greeting sounded like water in the middle of the desert of my soul. The clouds hovering over my mind dissipated in an instance… There was light and clarity once again.
We sat down, had a great visit, a wonderful chat with tears of joy and tears of sadness, struggles but yet full of Hope. She shared with me how she was diagnosed with cancer and she is going through stem cell procedure, etc., etc. But she was not afraid of cancer, she was not afraid of death. We both agreed that our bodies may deteriorate and die when the time comes, but our actions of love, kindness and care make a difference and live forever… What a lesson to be reminded of, what a joy to have The Spirit guide our steps. There was sparkling joy in her eyes that no money can buy.
Beloved, truly, what a JOY to have had this day – just a familiar voice that greets us out of nowhere can help cast away the clouds and help us have a clear vision of Hope even in difficult circumstances such as cancer or any other perils of life.
So, today, I wish you nothing but following your internal GPS, even if everything around you seems a bit cloudy and out of balance…
May You follow that gut feeling – and end up encountering Hope and Joy in the unexpected places of Life.