GOD WILL LEAD US THROUGH THESE UNCERTAIN TIMES. TRUST, RELY, WAIT, REJOICE, BELIEVE, RELAX!
Sometimes through conversation, inspiration springs forth! We’ve had some communication about what’s going on in our world today and we wanted to share it with all. So, we created this tab which allows us to could come together and share our ideas, thoughts, prayers, photos or whatever you might want to talk about. At this point, this page may be temporary … or it may be long term so we can reference it when we reach some other struggle in our lives. I’ve dated each entry for easier reference. Please feel free to leave your comments at the bottom of the page and I’ll post them for all the CTW family.
*New entries will appear in red
Sharing a letter from our local hospital; it says it all.
Dear Essentia Health patient:
Thank you for supporting Essentia’s health care heroes during the COVID-19 pandemic. When the pandemic began, we appreciated the donations of masks and signs of encouragement on display in our communities. Now, with the number of COVID-19 cases growing rapidly, we need your help again.
We are respectfully asking for everyone in our communities to become a health care hero. Please join us in the fight against COVID-19 by:
- Wearing a mask
- Avoiding gatherings
- Staying at least six feet apart from others
- Washing your hands
- Getting your flu shot
Our hospitals are very busy right now helping patients with COVID-19 and other health concerns. Like you, we are tired of this pandemic and worn down by the sacrifices we’ve all made. Yet our calling gives us the strength to keep going and stay vigilant against this virus. At Essentia, we are blessed with skilled and compassionate caregivers who have made it their life’s work to care for you. We respectfully ask you to demonstrate your gratitude by doing your part to slow the spread of COVID-19 and protect our valuable health care workers.
Thank you for the privilege of caring for you and your family.
David C. Herman, MD
Essentia Health CEO
As this pandemic drags on and we struggle with our responsibility to ourselves and others around us, I urge you all to take the necessary safety precautions to keep you, your loved ones and those around you healthy.
Please wash your hands, wear your masks and practice social distancing. If we all do this together, we can beat this virus!
Sarah Young says ‘Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Hear Me saying ‘Peace, be still’ to your restless heart. No matter what happens. I will never leave you or forsake you. Let this assurance soak into your mind and heart until you overflow with joy. The media relentlessly proclaim bad news: for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. A steady diet of their fare will sicken you. Instead of focusing on fickle, ever-changing news broadcasts, tune in to the living Word – the One who is always the same. Even though you don’t know what will happen tomorrow, you can be absolutely sure of your ultimate destination.’
Our sister-in-Christ, Annette, sent me an email that contained this song. Although I wasn’t able to reprint the exact version, I did find another on YouTube that carries the same message. Thanks, Annette, for sharing!
This is a follow up on the craft project I did for a local care center (see entry below). They were kind enough to share pictures of a couple of residents who enjoyed their crafting activity.
Although storms have many origins, there is only one answer for all of them. When everything around us comes unglued and falls apart, we must go to our knees, trusting the Lord to give us a sense of assurnace and boldness to stand firm in obedience. A yielded life that’s settled in God’s Word, open to His work within us, and made adequate in the Holy Spirit’s love and power is immovable in the tempests of life.
~ Charles Stanley
April 15, 2020 email from JoAn
‘The devotion from Sarah Young today in Jesus Calling really struck me and I wanted to share it with you. Maybe some of you read her daily devotions and so this will be a repeat for you, but for those that may not be familiar with her writings, I think you will find this very timely for our current circumstances:
‘Trust Me, and don’t be afraid. Many things feel out of control. Your routines are not running smoothly. you tend to feel more secure when your life is predictable. Let Me lead you to the rock that is higher than you and your circumstances. Take refuge in the shelter of My wings, where you are absolutely secure.
When you are shaken out of your comfortable routines, grip My hand tightly and look for growth opportunities. Instead of bemoaning the loss of your comfort, accept the challenge of something new. I lead you on from glory to glory, making you fit for My kingdom. Say yes to the ways I work in your life. Trust Me and don’t be afraid.’
Isaiah 12:2 – ‘See, God has come to save me. I will trust in him and not be afraid. The LORD God is my strength and my song; he has given me victory.’
Psalm 61:2-4 – ‘From the ends of the earth, I cry to you for help when my heart is overwhelmed. Lead me to the towering rock of safety, for you are my safe refuge, a fortress where my enemies cannot reach me. Let me live forever in your sanctuary, safe beneath the shelter of your wings.’
2 Corinthians 3:18 – ‘So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.’
Remember, we are in this together … and that means together with God. Do not let go of His hand!
And, here are comments we heard back from our CTW family. As more comments come in, I will continue to post them here:
‘Thank You!’ ~ Sheila
‘Yes, I do read Sarah Young, Jesus Calling and I really do enjoy her daily devotions. It seems she has such good advice and very timely in our social life and my personal life as well. Thank you so much for sharing!!’ ~ Laurine
‘Excellent message from Jesus Calling. Thank you for sharing! Blessings.’ ~ Pastor Fay
‘It just came at the absolute PERFECT moment. Thank you.’ ~ Tina
‘Thank you, JoAn. I love this. Keep on keeping on!’ ~ Pastor Barry
‘Good morning. I just wanted to say that I too have the book Jesus Calling by Sarah Young and read it everyday. I think that yesterday’s message was so timely and feel God has put that message for those of us who are believers, right where we needed it! God is good and so smart (lol) and we are so blessed to know that he loves us and keeps his loving protective arms around us as we face these days of isolation and uncertainty. We must believe and trust! I hope you have a wonderful God blessed day and stay safe and well!’ ~ Sally
‘Thank You for sharing Sarah Young’s devotion! I just got this from Abbey of the Hills Newsletter and I will share the last 2 sentences, from Deacon Paul. “God has not changed, not has His love for us changed. Let us be Saints striving to encourage one another as we grow in trust of the One whose love and mercy never changes.” LIKE YOU SAID, “WE ARE IN THIS TOGETHER … AND THAT MEANS TOGETHER WITH GOD! DO NOT LET GO OF HIS HAND.” TRUST, RELY, WAIT, REJOICE, BELIEVE, RELAX’ ~ Darlene
‘We’re using the same devotion book this year. Directed by the Spirit, I’m sure. Truly have found it to be a sound blessing again this year. ~ Sharon
‘Thank you so much for sharing this devotion. The timing couldn’t be better. Will also share this with others. Thank you again for your ministry. God bless you.’ ~ Carol
‘With all the changes we’re experiencing in our world today, remember “I the Lord do not change” (Malachi 3:6). I’m so encouraged to know He is the same Lord who saw the Israelites through the desert, who stilled the raging sea and gave freedom to us prisoners. ~ Liz
Cross The World treated the staff at one of our local care centers to crosses and tasty and very colorful cupcakes.
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
This is a bulletin board/door hanger craft project I put together for the residents of a local care center to do as a one-on-one activity.
And, here is a nice thank you letter received from the CEO of the local hospital/care center:
‘I am writing to express my sincere gratitude for your very generous donation of handmade wood crosses, crafts and seven dozen delicious cupcakes to the residents and staff of Cuyuna Regional Medical Center’s Care Center. During this unprecedented time, it is uplifting to have our community come together with donations to ensure our staff has the tools needed in a timely manner to continue providing safe health care for area residents. We are grateful for the support from our generous community friends.’
March 28, 2020 email from JoAn
All of us at Cross The World are sending you well wishes and praying that you are staying one step ahead of Covid-19 which is rapidly encroaching into our personal lives, one way or another. It is our hope that all of you are listening to the medical professionals and ‘sheltering in place’ or staying ‘safe at home’. We need to protect ourselves, our families, our friends and neighbors.
We’re sure you have all heard the urgent calls for supplies and assistance and, as fellow Americans, we know you are wondering how you can help. If you have extra time on your hands and a heart that wants to ‘make someone’s day’, we have some ideas that may help you out.
Medical facilities are pleading for supplies. If your heart is leading you that direction, we would suggest you first call your local hospital or search their Facebook page to see what supplies they may be looking for and where & how you can drop them off. In all likelihood, the most asked thing will probably be face masks and, if you are a home sewer, they are easy to make; some of the hospitals are sharing a pattern on their FB page. If not, a quick Google search will turn one up for you.
A quick call to your local grocery, gas or essential retail store manager will answer the question if they are looking for masks for their employees. And, don’t forget about a mask for yourself and your family; perhaps making some for your neighbors so they feel more secure when stepping outside would be appreciated. Supplies can be obtained through Joann Fabrics (on-line or curbside pick-up) or ordered over Amazon if you don’t have a stash already in your craft room. Elastic seems to be a short supply item right now; ties can be added to the masks in place of the elastic. Just be sure to use 100% cotton for the mask and, if you want to add an in-between layer for additional filtering, use sew-in interfacing (do NOT use fusible interfacing because of the chemicals!). In a pinch, a couple of layers of a cotton blend T-shirt cut to size for the in-between layers works too!
But, what if you’re stuck in the house, don’t know how to sew, but still want to do something? Or, the kids are seriously needing an activity? Here are just a few ideas:
- Senior housing residents are feeling this dreaded virus too, even though many of them are still very healthy! Some have been isolated from friends and families for over 3 weeks. How about brightening their day by making and sending them a card or writing them a short letter? You could send these, in bulk, to the Activities Department of your local care center, assisted living/senior facility and they will pass them along to the residents. This would be a great, much appreciated project for kids of all ages!
- Staff at these facilities are working tirelessly and are getting exhausted. Many residents are not only on facility lockdown but are also quarantined to their room because of illness. This additional needed care is adding more stress to the staff. So, maybe a nice ‘Thank You’ card blanketing the entire staff would make their day. Or, how about arranging for the local pizzeria to drop off a couple of pizzas, the local DQ to deliver some ice cream cakes or boxes of ice cream bars, or have the local Subway deliver some sandwiches?
- Phone calls to check on neighbors, the elderly, friends … just to say ‘Hi’ … but really to make sure they are doing okay. Volunteer to run errands for them; bring them a hotdish; send them a cheery card.
- Urgent Care/ER staff, Day Care Providers, Teachers, Pastors and Parish Nurses (just naming a few) are also working overtime. Acknowledge their commitment and praise them for their dedication.
- Don’t forget to thank the other unnamed ‘essential’ workers … policemen, firemen, First Responders, EMTs, postal workers, grocers and other stores that are staying open for us, UPS, the guy who delivers your propane … we’re sure you can expand this list quite quickly.
- And, please, please don’t overlook the military! They are generously stepping in to aid all of us Americans and they are putting themselves at risk as well. At the very least, pray for their safety.
These are just a few options on ways to help; we’re sure there are many, many more ideas out there. And, not everything has to cost much money or any at all. Homemade cookies, a box of donuts, gift cards, chocolates or even a cup of coffee can make a simple but meaningful statement of gratitude; flowers are always appreciated. Or, when you’re out exercising your dog or enjoying your daily stroll through the neighborhood, why not add the care center to your route and wave & smile to the residents through the windows? Some groups are even caroling from window to window at these facilities. And, of course it goes without saying, that our crosses make a big statement wherever they go!!
Let us be a freeway for your ideas/thoughts; let’s open up the communication lines! It’s all about thinking outside the box! If you’ve already provided some materials or a service and would like to share what you’re done with others, let us know and we’ll gladly pass it on; we’d really love to hear from some of you nurses!! To quote Ellen Degeneres, ‘Be Kind to One Another’. We’re all in this together and we will get through it … together. Walk by Faith, not by Sight.
Ending, we wanted to share this: ‘The Lord is my light and salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?’ Psalm 27:1
We are holding you all in prayer. Stay healthy.
Here are some responses to that email:
‘Thank you for this great note. I hope it will raise the spirit of many you have come in contact with. The Lord has plenty of fabric on hand at my home so I am busy making masks. Today I will be starting to use ties instead of elastic as I can’t get anymore. Just waiting for a supply of pipe cleaners as nose adjusters for this next batch of masks. I thank God for dedicated servants like you all across our country who are stepping up to do what we can in this time of stress. May God Bless you in all that you do.’
Edna – AZ
‘I am making face masks for my daughter-in-law’s vet clinic. They requested some so they could sterilize them in the autoclave so I am using paper clips for the nose pieces.’
Judy – MN