“Earlene, you have been chosen to be the lay director of the spring Women’s Walk to Emmaus weekend.”
“Whoa, is that you, God? Now, you know I don’t do that leader-thing any more. I’m a follower!”
Walk to Emmaus is the Methodist version of Cursillo (Catholic), Via de Cristo (Lutheran), Tres Dias (Presbyterian), and so forth. The format is the same regardless of the denomination.
These are awesome, spirit-filled weekends spent concentrating on your relationship with God. It takes a whole team of people, and a lot of work on the part of each team member, to pull off these gatherings.
Being chosen as a part of an Emmaus team is an honor. Through being on many Emmaus teams since going on my initial “Walk” in 1996, I personally have witnessed many hearts touched and lives changed for the better.
It isn’t just the first-time “Walkers” who see the hand of God working. Each time a team member is involved, their faith is confirmed.
But, what part of “not doing the leading-thing” doesn’t God understand? After reasoning this thing out, it is when you know you can’t do it and God sends all the help you need, and gives you the energy to do his work, that you experience his hand in it all. So, “OK, God, I’ll do it — but I’m counting on you!”
First on the agenda is getting 23 people to join our team. The past two weeks I’ve been making calls. What I’m finding is that very few people answer their phone! And, though I leave a message identifying myself and informing them the call is Emmaus-related, few call back.
What they don’t realize is, it’s not Earlene Campbell calling. I’m just doing the dialing and passing the message. Maybe if I say, “HELLO, this is God calling. Call me back at, …” I would receive an immediate response.
Getting a team together is great preparation for the lay director’s talk on “Perseverance.”
Perseverance: doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success. Synonyms: persistence, tenacity, determination, resolve, resolution, staying power.
Husband’s definition: stubbornness, pushy, naggy.
Oh yeah, my family has it all covered.
Daddy’s side (Sutliffs) passed on stubbornness. They dig in their heels and don’t move.
Momma’s side (Southwells) covers the determination. They are shakers and movers (pushing and nagging), never giving up until their goal is reached. When they make up their minds to do something, it WILL happen.
So, if you run across any Sutliff/Southwell genes, just get out of their way and let it happen. You will see perseverance at its utmost.
These family traits have seen my family through many of life’s adversities. Good or bad, I try to learn from them, and share them, so others will know they aren’t alone and there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
Woohoo, I just wrote part of my speech! The general opinion might not be to start it out with “How much perseverance it takes to get a team together,” but I can’t promise anything.
• • •
I came into the coffee shop to write. Nonchalantly, I stood in front of the coffee urn, pushed the spigot down, filled my cup, and turned to the sugar pot. Splashing! The stupid coffee spigot didn’t go back up automatically. I thought everything was automatic nowadays. How it didn’t splash on my two friends sitting at the nearest table beats me.
Notice how you’re always caught in the act when doing something stupid and embarrassing! Like I said, learn from it and share it so the next person will know to flick that little spigot handle back up.
I love going to the various coffee shops, whether with friends, by myself to write, or whatever. There are always acquaintances to greet, exchange a few words with, and laugh with.
Today, one of them said, “Earlene, they can’t keep you in a box.” It brought to mind that game they play at fairs where you try to whack the gopher popping his head out of one of many holes. And you never know which hole it will pop out of next. Yup, that’s me.
Well, two-and-a-half cups and one scone later, it’s time to quit for now. Until next time, don’t forget to F-R-O-G.
Note to readers: Earlene Campbell lives by the FROG motto — Fully Rely On God. She lives in Princeton and can be reached at email@example.com.