Saturday, December 4, 2021

Ewan Davis and Jim Kelly

 Ewan Davis and Jim Kelly could not be more different, but in the most important respect, they are so very much alike.

Jim Kelly was a resident at a local nursing facility when we first started doing services
there 19 years ago.  Jim was a vibrant, effusive man who was active until he was 98 when a stroke confined him to a wheelchair. The stroke, however, only diminished his strength.  His mind was as sharp as a tack and the twinkle in his eye and light in his spirit were as bright as ever. F
ull of laughter, kindness and love of life, he was a joy and pleasure to all who knew him.  We were blessed to know him for three years.  His love for life was contagious and he taught us all that the love and wonder of life was not based on what was around us, but upon what -- or better, Who -- was within us.

Ewan Davis is an energetic five year old and our youngest grandson.  He is kind, loving and thoughtful and has an impish grin that will make you smile back, whether you feel like it or not.  His laughter is infectious.

Last night our family met at the house of our youngest daughter, Emmie, to decorate her tree.  This has become a Christmas tradition to which we all look forward.  Ewan, of course, was there.  Ewan loves to have his family around him and loves to be involved in what the grown-ups are doing.  At one point he could contain his exuberance no longer and stated, "This is the best night, ever!"  With Ewan, this was not hyperbole, this was what he was actually feeling.  It is not the first time I have heard him express this sentiment and it reminded me so much of Jim Kelly.

Jim Kelly made a conscious choice in his life to see the best in everything.  Like Ewan, I heard him say on more than one occasion, "This is the best day of my life!"  Also like Ewan, this was not just a sentence, it was the expression of his true feelings at the moment.  The man in the wheelchair, living in a nursing facility, was so full of the love of God and knowledge of His goodness, that each day was "the best day of my life".

If we believe that the Lord is "working all things together for good" (Romans 8:28) in our lives, then we must also believe that He is actively working in this moment, and each and every  moment.  This is exactly the belief that leads to the "best day of my life" outlook.  God is working right now, wherever I am, whether in a wheelchair in a nursing home, or at my aunt's house decorating her Christmas tree.  

Am I headed to work knowing it will be a busy night, with many babies to come and not quite enough nurses?  God is working in that very shift, each of those 12 hours, each of those 720 minutes, even each of those 43, 200 seconds.  He has a lesson to teach me and truth to reveal to me in the place and time He has placed me that I can learn no where else.  Not only that, He also has some blessing He wants me to be to others in that same place and time.  He has prepared the possibility of "the best day of my life" if only I will trust Him by faith to see that.  Jim Kelly, in his years of experience with the Lord knew this and Ewan Davis in his experience of joyful childhood, knows this, too.  I pray that, like Jim and Ewan, I will know this more and more each day.

"This is the Lord's doing, it is marvelous in our eyes.
This is the day which the Lord hath made,
we will rejoice and be glad in it."
Psalm 118:23, 24

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