In that story I mentioned a guy named Joe Moll, who became embroiled in a ferocious bidding war for a rocking chair I had donated to the live auction. After finally getting the winning bid, he then turned around and graciously gave the rocker to the woman bidding against him. I thought of it as a metaphor for the spirit of the whole day: a community of people pulling together to raise money for a needy family.
No good deed goes unpunished. At least, that was my thought when I heard what came next. For not many weeks after that Joe's dear wife Peg was diagnosed with brain tumors. It was soon enough determined that they were inoperable. And Peg and Joe settled down faithfully to await what the Lord had in mind for them.
In the bulletin in church today we received greetings from Joe, who has been at home attending to Peg's needs. It seems that we are nearing the end of Peg's life: she hasn't been able to take solid food and has trouble with liquids. Here is what Joe's greeting said:
Dear Church Family;
Never has Holy Week and the promise of Easter met as much to Peggy and me as it did this year. We know that because Jesus rose from the dead, we also will be resurrected on the day of God's choosng. All of you have made Peggy and me feel so loved--prayers, cards by the handful, phone calls, gifts, words of encouragement, and of course, Pastor Mack's weekly visits.
I know that God has heard all of your prayers and He will answer them according to His will and in our best interest. A few months ago when Peggy could speak, she said, 'I think God is saving me from some future trouble.' Even then Peggy trusted that God wanted the best for her no matter what happened.
Thank you all for your love. Please keep Peggy in your prayers as we wait for God to fulfill His will in our lives.
Your brother in faith;
Amen. And what a faithful and profound understanding of what to the world appears to be tragedy and sorrow.