I was finishing my Junior Youth Sunday school lesson, with a cup of tea, and the burpcloths close by so I would remember to take them to the new parents that morning. We're having a little baby boom at church - so fun.
But I never actually used that lesson because one of Doris Janzen Longacre's daughter came and spoke to an adult Sunday school class, and I just hitched my junior youth onto that class because I wanted to hear her speak.
Doris Janzen Longacre wrote the More with Less cookbook, and large parts of Living More with Less. . . but she couldn't finish it because she died of cancer in her 30s, leaving behind her girls and husband. We've been reading and discussing the new edition of Living More with Less this summer.
Doris Janzen Longacre had a fair amount of adversity in her life (I learned from her daughter) - she was homeschooled because of her severe asthma, and in fact, her family moved to Arizona and she finally got strong there. Her asthma came back with a vengeance when she and her husband served the church in Indonesia - she almost died then.
But a few years later, just as she was about to start a master's degree in nutrition, she was diagnosed with breast cancer and given two years to live. Her daughter quoted from her journals, how Doris did not want "to leave the party early. . . " how she forced herself to cook on her low days because "the act of creating restores and brightens our spirits - how was God changed when he created our world?"
Doris was in her late 30s when she died. . . my age. It hurts me to imagine that.
Dear Doris, you always inspire me. I will not allow pain, worry, or sadness to be in charge of my life. I can cook, I can sew, I can pray to be led into new life, new hope.
(photos of that Sunday morning, then of my creative uplifting: potholder, sewing pattern, and plum and peach tart.)
Linking up with Leila's collection of capturing everyday contentment.
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