As Thanksgiving returns to us in 2011, I am the most thankful I have ever been in my 70 years of celebrating holidays. The last 15 months of my life have consisted of three hip surgeries and cancer of the eye socket.
I mean, did you even know that Phoenix has a surgeon who solely specializes in eye socket surgery? In catching me as I went into shock my husband’s tendon pulled away from his bone and the bicep parted, causing him to have surgery to repair it. Feeling weak, in pain and scared for the future, we returned to Payson from the Valley.
I saw in the Roundup about a church that is a leader in advocating for our homeless students and held meetings to help find homes to support them. Recently that same church hosted a dinner for the dear souls that serve in any weather as Salvation Army Bell Ringers. This is not a large church and there are members our age as well as youth.
Pastor Richard Richey doesn’t take a day off as he told me he has too much to do! My husband and I visited this church and from the very first Sunday were hugged, welcomed and loved. The last 15 months of pain melted away because the congregation cared and accepted and loved us so much. It is a joy to be with our church family every Sunday.
With the network news being more negative and sad every day as to the direction the United States is taking, one feels peace like a river turning into Payson First Church of the Nazarene at 200 E. Tyler Parkway. Hidden behind the trees and bushes, which muffle noise from the Beeline Highway,
I sat on a bench listening to the sweet sounds of young voices attending the most loving daycare and after-school care I have seen in my 14 years as an elementary teacher and 20 years as a supervisor of special education classes in Colorado. The sun was out, the wind tussling the tree leaves and I closed my eyes feeling as if I was at a five-star retreat house.
Today as Scott Nossek of Payson Physical Therapy teaches me to walk on my own again, I feel the warm water flow around my legs and so much thankfulness that God is alive and well in Payson.
May you also have that feeling this Thanksgiving.
Patricia L. Frisbie