My Walker and I

Wednesday, September 10

9-10By Lois Sloan of Salem, Oregon, USA

“For the mountains shall depart and the hills be removed; but my kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of my peace be removed, saith the Lord that hath mercy on thee.”

—III Nephi 10:18

I regretted the move I was about to make. I lived with a dear friend in an apartment with a great view. My visual blessings included llamas with a newborn, a pair of foxes and two kits, vultures sunning themselves on a barn roof, red-tailed hawks, and rabbits.

Why would I leave all this? I was leaving because of doctor’s orders. An upcoming knee surgery put our stairs on the “no-no list.”

A senior-care residence with an elevator became my new home. When I went home after the surgery, my walker and I took a therapeutic 10-minute stroll, twice a day. I was healing well. I increased my walking to a mile—10 times around the balcony. This gave me a chance to visit my new neighbors.

I remember the first time I visited Lucile. As I entered her apartment I had a strong sense of God’s Spirit. The rooms were neat and welcoming. Just as we became friends, I had to make another move—this time across the country. I try to keep in touch with Lucile and other friends with letters. Letters are important to let people know how they make a difference in our lives.

So walk around, if you can. Get some exercise. Meet new friends. Then sit down and write some letters. Surely, an old friend, family member, or former teacher would love to get a letter of love today. Share your appreciation for their part in your life.

I have lost friends—
some by death,
others through my sheer failure
to cross the street.

—Virginia Woolf, adapted

Prayer for Peace Welcoming God, help us respond to opportunities to meet new people whom we can invite to Christ—new people with whom we can share Christ’s peace.

Spiritual Practice: Invite People to Christ Read and reflect on Doctrine and Covenants 162:3b and 163:2b. Pray to be aware of people who might be receptive, and therefore blessed, by your sharing of the message of the Living Christ. Imagine being in relationship with them and inviting them to Christ. In preparation, discover your personal testimony of Christ. “Be persistent in your witness and diligent in your mission to the world.” Repeat this mantra throughout the day: “Christ’s mission, our mission, my mission.”

Peace Covenant Today, God, I will cross the street and meet a new friend. I will write a letter and meet an old friend, again.

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3 Comments

  1. Lisa

     /  10 September 2014

    Thanks for your message Lois, we miss you at Walnut Gardens!

  2. Mike Tatum

     /  10 September 2014

    As someone who has dealt with invisible illnesses the last seven years (and slowly but surely getting better), I can relate to the necessity of making changes. I’ve also made new friends along the journey that I hope to keep as the years go by. We share and we learn together. Being united in community, even when there are miles between, is a blessing that I wish for everyone.

  3. Carol Norris Vincent

     /  10 September 2014

    I so appreciated your message today. It parallels my life in some ways since I made the move more than two years ago that because of my disability I needed to be in assisted living. I have had opportunities to minister here as chaplain and hospice volunteer, but I have also made many good friends in this community of joy, hope, peace, and love. May God continue to bless you as you reach out to others in Christ’s love.

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