Houston Ecclesia, Texas, USA
Saturday, May 19, 2001
Our Sisters' Study Group met at our ecclesial hall this hot spring day so that after our study time we could join the brothers and children in spring cleaning of our hall.
We opened our study on page 110 of the "Appendix" section "Further Aspects of the Headcovering" in the excellent book, "Man and Woman" by Bro. Michael Lewis. Aspect #2 dealt with The Law of Jealousy in Num. 5. Several possible ideas were given for the reason that the priest began the rite by uncovering the head of the woman that had been brought to the priest suspected of adultery by her husband. However, we concluded that to us the best reason was that the woman was about to be judged, which coincides with the basic principle that when coverings are removed in the Scriptures it almost always means that a judgment is imminent (Job 26:6, Isa. 45:5).
We had a rich discussion on each aspect mentioned in the appendix. We even noticed as we read around that we were actually beginning to be comfortable pronouncing "peribolaion" and "Katakalupto", which had now come to be well known to us after our year and a half study of the Woman's Headcovering subject. Regardless of the many responsibilities and distractions that crowd each of our busy lives, progress can be steadily (howbeit slowly) made in our study of the Scriptures if we stick with it.
Having started on and now finished Chapter 9, the last chapter of the book "Man & Woman", we decided to go on to Chapter 1 for our next class, "Old Testament Foundations: Genesis".
The "daughters" study with us and even help us find verses we are hunting for.
While the sisters studied inside the cool building, Bro. Bob Clements and his son, Bro. Brett Clements, were outside in the blazing sun installing a new door on one of the Sunday School rooms.
Bro. Bob has been the maintenance chairman for our building for almost three decades now. His experience and knowledge of being "handy" in all aspects of building maintenance and repair really helps to make our "maintenance days" at the hall go smoothly. Even now in his late 70's he is one of the strongest and hardest working men I know. We were able to accomplish an amazing amount of work in a short amount of time largely due to Bro. Bob's careful preparation in purchasing, loading, and bringing with him all the materials we needed for each project.
After our study class, the brothers and children joined us for a pizza lunch provided by the ecclesia. Before we all sat down to eat together, Sis. Billie Jean Clements, Sis. Tracy Boswell and Sis. Sharon Glumac's daughter, Carmel, made a large crisp salad to go with the pizza.
Sis. Billie Jean Clements brought out the tomatoes for chopping up in the salad. No spring salad would be complete for our ecclesia without the addition of Bro. Bob Clements' sweet and juicy homegrown tomatoes, which we have all enjoyed every spring for decades.
At first we thought we would never eat all that pizza, but as the day wore on we finished almost every piece! Whenever we eat together at the hall (about four or five times a month), the children always prepare the drinks for the adults, who go through the line first. Here Chloe Clements prepares drinks for her mom, Sis. Rikke, and Sis. Teresa Mielke.
After lunch we each chose a cleaning job and got busy on our spring cleaning.
Carmel Glumac took on the job of removing all the books from our bountiful ecclesial library, dusting the books and shelves, and re-shelfing the books.
Moving on up the shelves, only two more shelves to go. Carmel's sister, Bethel helped dust and straighten the loose literature rack adjacent to the library.
That's Sis. Rikke Clements dusting the ceiling fan blades, while the children swarm like busy bees cleaning windows and vacuuming the pew cushions.
Sis. Teresa Mielke and her daughter Shannon super-scrubbed and sanitized the bathrooms.
Meanwhile, out in the hot sun, the brothers were working away trimming hedges and cleaning out the flower beds. Here Bro. Ed Glumac adds a fresh coat of paint to the front doors.
Two "sweet" things happened about this time, as the sun reached it's hottest point of the day.
As the sisters and daughters were cleaning up from lunch, I observed Sis. Billie Jean Clements get a clean dish rag out of the drawer and fill it with ice from the freezer. She then ran the ice-filled rag under the cool water for a while until the ice was melted. Curious, I followed her out the door where I saw her walk up to her hard-working husband of 58 years, Bro. Bob, remove his hat and gently and loving wipe off his face and neck with the cold rag. Sis. Billie did not realize what a sweet lesson she taught us all - without saying a word.
About that time, all at once, the kids started coming from all corners of the buildings and yard followed by Sis. Teresa Mielke. They gathered at the edge of the parking lot and were all waiving down the street. I was puzzled until I saw and heard what they had already heard several minutes before - ding! ding! ding! ding! - the ice cream man! Now there is a lesson on "incline thy ear".
Our ecclesial hall is in an old modest neighborhood near downtown Houston. The ice cream man in this neighborhood rides a bike with a small box mounted on the back which is full of popsicles, ice creams on a stick, snow cones, and dry ice. Sis. Teresa treated all the heated-up kids to cold ice creams. She looked so cute standing by the street in her apron surrounded by our excited children.
Those who have experience with the intense heat of our area will understand the "sweet" comfort of an ice cold rag on the face and an ice cream on a stick.
The sisters made short work of the inside of the hall and then moved on to clean the Sunday School Rooms and help Sis. Rikke Clements put up new bulletin boards in her classroom. Sis. Rikke was just beginning to lay out the lettering and the rest of the bulletin board contents on the table so that the sisters and kids could put them up on the bulletin board. Daniel Mielke, son of Sis. Teresa, ducked under the table at the first site of the camera coming in the door - he doesn't "cotton" to having his picture taken.
Meanwhile out in the hot sun, Sis. Tracy Boswell removed the screens outside the Sunday School rooms and washed all the windows. It was not raining. We use umbrellas here in Texas as a defense from the burning sun. It was fun watching Sis. Tracy on the outside and Sis. Rikke on the inside playing "Whose side is that smudge on?" with the cleaning rags.
Joshua Clements, son of Bro. Brett, and Daniel Mielke, son of Sis. Teresa Mielke, helped Bro. Brett paint the new door. I had to sneak up on them with the camera as I did not want Daniel to try to run from the camera with a brown wet paint roller in his hand.
We were all so blessed to behold how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell and work together in unity. Our hall was renewed and refreshed, and so were we.
Lord willing, our next Sisters' Study Group will be held in late summer.
Saturday, January 20, 2001
Saturday, August 19, 2000
Saturday, April 15, 2000
Saturday, March 4, 2000
Saturday, January 22, 2000
Saturday, December 11, 1999
Saturday, October 23, 1999
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