Thursday, August 24, 2006

The empty walls and tabletops of my office have begun to recede as trinkets and treasures from around the world lay claim to space. Some were gifts from the Amazighe people we worked with this summer. Some are souvenirs from staff in the office which were brought back to me from the respective countries they ministered in. Some are items BJ returned with from Peru, which I only recently inherited.

Some of the items were especially made for me, or more aptly, for the position I hold at Awe Star. A wood carving with our ministries' name on it along with the name of one of the associations we worked with over the summer was constructed and given to us out of appreciation. Another item is a large shallow bowl made in and by one of the Ceramics shops we visited when we were in Africa. It too has our ministry name and the name of the local association on it. These gifts are treasures to me.

I remember when and how they were given and the loving people who gave them. They were very precious.

A leather ashkar or "man-purse" I purchased from an Amazighe associations' antique items is among my favorites. It is weathered leather and rope bound by formerly bright colored thread. It is very old, has several cool pockets, and was used by a middle aged man who was comfortable with where he was in life, to hold and carry bread and other necessary items.

On the wall hangs a knife tooled by nomads in the Sahara. The sheath is bound by snakeskin and the belt strap is a large pliable leather loop.

There is a slingshot made of wool, used for herding llama's. It is 4 to 5 feet long. It is typically worn around the neck until needed. Then, I am told, it is retrieved for use when the llamas' stray. The Peruvians are extremely accurate with its use. This was brought to me by our Extreme teams from this past summer.

I joked with a couple of students before they left this summer that I wanted them to bring me a llama puppy. Well, they did... sort of... they brought me 3 small stuffed llama figurines.

I have trinkets from Panama and Chile as well. All of these things carry meaning for me.

These items all bring about thoughts and memories which I am fond of. However, they are just things. The memories are what is important.

Of the items adorning my office, the thing which carries the most meaning is a 12"x18" photo of BJ. It was enlarged by some wonderful friends and matted to an even larger background. It was used at his funeral celebration as it stood on an easel at the pinnacle of the floral pieces. It's a bit grainy, but it is him sitting at leisure in Peru with the Pacific Ocean in the background. His smile is a constant reminder of how willingly he loved, served, and died for his Savior.

Few things will evoke memories in such a way.

Things perish. People perish. What people do with the time they have resounds through time.



At 1:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Praise the Lord!!!!!! AMEN

At 5:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Father, thank you for men and women who empty themselves for Your use. For allowing them to touch our hearts with your love. For words that loving convict our passive souls. For spirits eager to share the source of Life with the world. For BJ, Brent, for those who boldly step into the unknown with fearing, trembling minds but confident, roaring hearts shouting the name of Jesus! Amen

At 6:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for you and your family's writings. They mean so much. I look forward to them each day. Your family is in my prayers daily even though I have never met you all. May God bless each of you.

At 8:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wonderful treasures that hold such wonderful memories provide the foundation of support needed during our times when we stumble and days when we fall. God, thank you, for your provision.

Blessings, Tina

p.s. My brother in law Jay has to have cervical fusion in his neck on Sept. 1. Prayers would be greatly appreciated.


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