AN ODE TO MOTHERHOOD

Having just met our first great-grandchild, Pippa, in South Chile, I thought it good to post a note from our grandson-in-law, Jorge Whitaker Paris, who wrote about his wife since they are now new parents. Jorge writes as follows.

“In this time that we’ve been getting used to the beautiful role of fatherhood and motherhood, I have had the chance to see Naomi’s invaluable work as a mother and housewife. I have always admired the work of mothers, but from a theoretical perspective; now I see it in my own home and greatly admire how our daughter grows healthily and well cared-for thanks to the dedication and diligence of my beloved Naomi. I try to help any moment that I can, but I come home from work late and exhausted, so I haven’t been able to participate in everything as much as I’d like. My beloved companion does the majority of this work. Before, I used to think that I would be disgusted by changing dirty diapers or washing pooped clothes, but interestingly the opposite has occurred. I take advantage of every chance I have to change Pippa’s diapers and I love doing it, especially because I see the gaze of trust and affection that this small delicate creature has for me. Fatherhood is by far one of the most beautiful experiences in life, and I desire more free time to share this wonderful work with my Naomi, and to enjoy all the beauty of being a father. I’d like to reflect on something as well as confess. About three or fours years ago there was a trend of laughing at the expression of “being the father and mother at the same time”, and I also made jokes on the topic. But since then, having seen the sacrificial work of fatherhood/motherhood, I can do no less than feel indignation and repudiation for those men that, for egotistical reasons, abandon their families or leave their spouses alone to care for the children. The thought of all those women who alone must carry bags, backpacks, and strollers to take their children to checkups, taking the bus alone with their babies, or during those hard nights taking care of a sick child, meanwhile the father is so obviously absent or haggles every cent meant for child support because he needs to drink his pack of beer on the weekend or go out to the movies with his new love interest. Almost every time that we’ve had to take Pippa to her checkups at the clinic, waiting a long time for the bus on the side of the highway, I have been able to get permission in order to accompany Naomi. I have respect for the women who do all this alone and with less resources. It is true that today motherhood and fatherhood are in a serious crisis, which manifests itself in the crisis of values and principles which we see in our current society; and so with even greater reason I admire those women who fight every day, alone and with many unmet needs, to help their children succeed and raise them in the best way they can. I also admire the fathers who take responsibility and are true companions in caring for home and children. On the other hand, my complete contempt for those men and women who abandon their roles as father and mother for selfish motives and create a crueler and more egocentric society. It’s a shame that these latter fathers and mothers are multiplying by the minute, only sowing more societal problems which we must deal with tomorrow. I thank the Lord for my beloved Naomi, who does such delicate and diligent work in the care of our family and home. “ 

Jorge, Naomi and little Pippa (Philippa Jane Whitaker Suko is the proper name) reside in southern Chile near the town of Panguipulli.

Jorge, Naomi and little Pippa (Philippa Jane Whitaker Suko is the proper name) reside in southern Chile near the town of Panguipulli.

Thanks Jorge for your honest and accurate assessment of where parenthood has gone today and for the new love you found for it…even loving changing dirty diapers. That is amazing. “Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.” Pro 31:30

(See my March 26th blog Chilling in Warm Chile for more details on Jorge and Naomi’s home in Chile.)

Don’t Forget Mothers Day Sunday May 12th is Mothers Day. Celebrate with us as we have a special Mothers Fellowship Breakfast at 9:30 and worship service at 10:30. Bring your Mom or someone who is like a Mother to you.

OUR JERUSALEM AND THE GENERATIONS TO COME

When Christ gave the Great Commission (Acts 1:8) He commanded the church to first be “witnesses in Jerusalem” and then the world. It was to start right where they were (cf. Mark 5:19); we’ve realized that too. When we purchased our current 3.5 acre site in 95 we noted we were in the center of the growing area. We met in our barn for 12 years and built the current facility. Then the second bridge came and people started coming faster and didn’t want to pay the toll to return. Houses, apartments, senior retirement complexes and stores sprang up and continue to do so. Less than a mile from us 178 new houses are being built, as well as, many others in the area. The mission field is coming to us.

Therefore we planned to maximize our site to within one square foot of code with better class room areas, basement storage, a family fellowship center, an expanded foyer, a 44% larger worship center, and a fully paved parking area. Today the plans are done and we expect a permit to start building soon. We are “Expanding for the Generations to Come.” Yes…more are coming.

The new Narrows Bridge cost 72 times as much as the first one. Building prices have gone up. Our builder expects the cost of our project to be $2.9 million dollars. But we know the Lord will provide, so a few weeks ago we asked our flock to pray about giving over and above to our building fund for two years to help bring the price of the loan down. Praise the Lord, the grand total of pledges to date is $211,402.00. This helps us save money in the long run. If you are interested in helping go to www.discoverybaptist.org and click the GIVE button. A special brochure and commitment card are also available at church or on request.

Last week in Everett, Chris and I met with our regional church Revolving Fund committee and presented our anticipated building project loan needs of $2,5 million. That plus our own funds should be enough to build. The Revolving Fund is a fund that our group of churches (Baptist Network Northwest) has maintained for decades to help churches build in the northwest. We presented the needs and the committee then met privately to discuss it. Later they told us we have been approved to borrow $2.2 million. They also approved us to borrow the remaining $300,000 if enough folks invest an equal amount ($300,000) in the Revolving Fund. Those are not gifts but investments paying interest of up to 4% depending on the loan length. Those funds are in turn loaned to our building project. More information on this will be made available later. We are thankful to the Lord for His provision.

I am standing with Nelson Zarfas our BNN business manager and loan officer last week at our conference in Everett. We so appreciate the work BNN has done to make it possible for us to be able to help cover the cost of building. By the way, thanks to them for the free BNN polo shirt too. :-)

I am standing with Nelson Zarfas our BNN business manager and loan officer last week at our conference in Everett. We so appreciate the work BNN has done to make it possible for us to be able to help cover the cost of building. By the way, thanks to them for the free BNN polo shirt too. :-)

The steps of God’s providence through the last forty years at Discovery are much easier to see in retrospect. Some of those include being encouraged to plant a church here vs. in Alaska, finding our house in one day on the peninsula, discovering our current building site as a result of a prayer meeting where I was reminded of a letter laid aside months earlier, and God bringing various people into our church who would be the needed leaders of the future.

Pray that soon we will have that permit to build for the generations to come here in Gig Harbor. That will make our church better able to reach our Jerusalem and be a launching point for more missions to the four corners of the globe.

Pastor Mark


ALL MY EGGS IN ONE BASKET

Recently Mike McKinley’s book, Passion, grabbed me. It’s a good read this time of year. As you might have guessed, my blog title is about Easter. But it’s not what you think. Yes, I do have all my eggs in one basket. I am not referring to a basket of Easter eggs. My basket is the resurrection of Christ.

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The events leading up to Easter morning are discouraging; Jesus was given a kingly welcome into Jerusalem but then executed on a cross. His followers were scattered and scared. Death was not what they expected. Paul said “…if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is vain, your faith also is vain.”  If there is no resurrection then there is no forgiveness, no life after death, and nothing to live for except self (cf. Acts 2:22-24; Rev. 1:18).

But Easter changed everything. Jesus was resurrected and details of the story confirm it. Jesus was raised. All my eggs are in one basket. I am betting on Christ’s resurrection. McKinley lists three ways the resurrection changes everything. First, for the believer you have the guarantee of being “saved from eternal death, for eternal life.”  The resurrection is an act of God showing the Father has accepted Christ’s death in our place for our sin. We are secure in Christ forever.

Second, you don’t have to live like this life is all there is. “If we have hoped in Christ in this life only, we are of all men most to be pitied.” (I Cor. 15:19) But believers are free to give their lives away. Don’t waste your life on sinful desires, getting your “dream house,” or becoming successful.  I am not advocating doing nothing until the rapture. But give your life for the cause of Christ in some way. Commit to helping others and sharing the gospel. And, most of all be part of God’s program for this life, the church. There is nothing else like it.

Third, because of the resurrection you have an ever-present Savior. His Holy Spirit was sent to be with us and empower us for whatever He wants. That is so comforting when you are alone and unsure. You can call on Him for wisdom, direction, comfort and know He hears. Such a deal, all this and heaven too!

This is one of my favorite paintings done by my son Ezra the artist after he returned from Israel where he visited the garden tomb site where Christ was taken and later resurrected.

This is one of my favorite paintings done by my son Ezra the artist after he returned from Israel where he visited the garden tomb site where Christ was taken and later resurrected.

How about you? Where are your eggs? Unsure about the resurrection or why it is so critically important?  Whatever your situation why not join us Easter weekend as we celebrate and learn more of the story.

·        4/19 7:00pm Good Friday.  I will speak on Father, Forgive Them from Luke 23 and the importance of seeing ourselves on the cross. (Livestreamed)

·        4/21 9:30am Easter Sea of Galilee Breakfast. An informal fellowship time with light breakfast

·        4/21 10:30am Easter Worship  Pastor Chris speaking on The Good News of Your Faith and Love" from 1 Thes. 3:6. (Livestreamed)

Subscribe to our blogs at www.DiscoveryBaptist.org, See details also of our building expansion project to start soon entitled For the Generations to Come. Click below for more details.  You can also call the office for a complete packet of information to be sent to you or ask for a board member to talk to about it.  

      

 -Pastor Mark Suko