She Left Me!

IMG_0677On Wednesday noon, February 19,  winter weather permitted us to have our weekly meeting of the Men’s Fellowship.  When the men asked about My Joy I shocked them by saying “She left me.”  I wiped the aghast look off their faces by explaining that she had gone to Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, to witness the wedding of her only granddaughter.  The wedding site was chosen as a mid point for the Argentinian and US families involved.  My Joy surprised me by a phone call on Thursday.  She had just come in from the beach!


A Palestinian view of Israeli activity

My Joy happily followed her civil engineer husband from project to project and from church to church. She understands the feelings of a stranger in a church, and with her smile she welcomed me to CMC and unintentionally won me.  Her daughter  married a student that she met at Hesston  College. Hesston, Kansas.  He was a Palestinian. Because of loyalty to his family of origin her son-in-law died while resisting an Israeli invasion of Lebanon. Their daughter is My Joy’s only great grandchild. Love usually enriches. Loyalty is often costly. Do you understand that My Joy and I have many differences to explore and enjoy.

Malinda Berry

Malinda Berry

My daughter Rachel has just returned from the Woman in Leadership Conference in Leesburg, Virginia.  The conference was entitled “All You Need is  Love: Honoring the Diversity of Women’s Voices in Theology.” Malinda Berry, an instructor in Theological Studies at Bethany Seminary,  gave a response in which she suggested that women can be apostles to the apostles.

Lee Roy Berry, Jr.

Lee Roy Berry, Jr.

Malinda is the daughter of Lee Roy Berry, Jr.  He grew up as a member of a farm worker family who lived in the winter season in Fruitville, East of Sarasota, Florida.  When he couldn’t enter an appropriate school near his home,  Mennonites from the Newtown Gospel Chapel put him on a bus to Eastern Mennonite College.  He eventually attended law school and set up a law office in Goshen, Indiana and joined the faculty of Goshen College.


See the frozen lizard? Or is it a giant rat?

I have just had word (about midnight, February 24) from my son Conrad that he has My Joy and his Jill in his car, having met them both at South Bend.  She left me, and she has returned. She comes to mounds of cold, rained-on, wind-evaporated,- multi refrozen – crystalized icy, dirty snow.  I wonder if the Eskimos have a word for that rare kind of snow.


About Martin Lehman

I was born 92 years ago, the son of a Mennonite pastor and organic gardener in Franklin County, Pennsylvania. At age 10 I was baptized as a member of the Marion Mennonite Church. I own the "Old Fool" moniker because I want to walk the Jesus Way even though the world and much of the church takes me as a fool for doing so. In my life I have moved from being a young conservative to an elderly radical. I tell that story in My Faith Journey posted on my website.
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6 Responses to She Left Me!

  1. Audrey Metz says:

    Martin, I’m sure the Eskimos, Inuits, etc, have a name for every kind of snow; in fact, a children’s book I saw (and meant to bring home from Alaska but forgot it) talked about ten different names for snow. Research online points to many more than that! All I know is I love snow so much, the one word is enough! Harrisonburg had flurries again this morning, but now the sun is laughing, skies are blue, and spring doesn’t seem far away even though it’s still February. I would love to see one more good snow before the forsythia comes out in full bloom. Glad Your Joy has returned!

  2. Peter Oakley says:

    With a title like “She Left Me” how could I not click through and read your latest post. Glad to learn that “She Has Returned.” You made me smile today.

  3. Kendal Sommers says:

    Martin, I don’t know how you do it. Once again, something in your post grabbed me by the collar and won’t let me go. Two short sentences: “Love usually enriches. Loyalty is often costly.”

    Such simple phrases, but so loaded with meaning. I’m not even sure I can articulate the swirl of thoughts those two sentences evoke. For one, I think of all the lives throughout history that have been destroyed, created, and tangled up in those two sentences. Those words are the opening of a very, very deep well.

  4. Marilyn Slabach says:

    This site is an amazing way to do ministry work. Your wisdom, knowledge, and thought-provoking insights do continue to impact my life. What a world we live in. Do you ever really adapt to that snow and cold temps. Spring will come! Blessings

  5. Yes, we do adapt to weather changes. I remember how I put on coat after coat as a new comer to Indiana from Florida. I said I was ready for spring a month ago. I also said to my family that God and I had come to an agreement. If God decides to let it snow I would not interfere!

  6. Mary Bew says:

    Yes, it’s a “joy” to read your writings. Thanks! Your Sarasota friends enjoy seeing the snow photos, also. You have good memories of Florida “winters!”

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