Esther Cottrell, State Pastor…beginning March 8, 2018
“It’s Love Intensive”
March 29, 2018, Maundy Thursday
“Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end.”
Today is Maundy Thursday. The day in the Holy Week calendar that lifts up the Christian value of service to one another through the washing of feet as a way to show love. Jesus did it first in the Upper Room after dinner and he asked those who would follow after him to also practice washing feet. Through the years I have grown to value and cherish this ordinance as a reminder that the path of service to one another is the path of love.
It’s been nearly 2 weeks since surgery and I am thankful for the continued prayer support, cards, meals, and other gifts of love that so many of you in my family, on my staff, in my church, across Ohio, and around the world have given. I truly feel that your prayers and support have much to do with the fact that I am healing well, getting good reports from the doctors, and feeling stronger with each passing day.
I will tell you that the second night after I got home from the hospital was a particularly difficult and painful time. I awoke in the middle of the night crying out in pain. Each movement intensified that pain. In a moment Chris was at my side to get some pain meds and help me adjust my body to a place of comfort. After I was settled again I held his hand and apologized for being, “so labor intensive.” Chris then quipped, “It’s not labor intensive, it’s love intensive.”
May we each commit ourselves on this Holy Thursday to live out our love for Christ and for one another as we serve one another with love intensive.
“Standin’ in the Need of Prayer”
March 8, 2018
As a child I learned the simple, yet powerful song,
It’s me, It’s me, It’s me, O Lord
Standin’ in the need of prayer!
Not just my sister, or my brother, but it’s me, O Lord
Standin’ in the need of prayer!
Such a simple song that reminds each of us that we are frail children of dust who live and breathe and have hope because of Jesus Christ.
Because so many of you are so faithful to pray for me, the Ohio Ministries team, and our shared ministry in Ohio, I am asking you to intercede once again on my behalf as I prepare for cancer surgery next week.
In a routine mammogram the technician discerned an abnormality resulting in more tests that confirmed there was malignancy in my body. After consultation with a team of specialists I consented that the best course of action is surgery which is scheduled for next Friday, March 16 at the James Cancer Center in Columbus, OH.
The good news is that this is a very early detection of the most common, curable form of breast cancer. The treatment of surgery to remove the cancerous area should be enough. I should not have to consider radiation and chemotherapeutic treatments. The better news is that I have a great medical team of specialists that are working on my behalf. The best news is that Dr. Jesus is heading that team! It is on that best news that I rest and find peace.
On the advice of my doctors and with the consent of the Governing Board, I will be on medical leave beginning March 14 through mid- May. During that time our State Associate Pastor, Demetrius Booker will be serving as Acting State Pastor.
Additionally, the Ohio Ministries staff and Governing Board are committed to work together so that our shared state ministry continues with strength and excellence. I am confident in and thankful for this team of committed and capable persons at Ohio Ministries, ready to serve you.
Early in this journey the Lord gave Chris and me this prayer from Jeremiah 17:14, Heal me, Lord, and I will be healed; save me and I will be saved, for you are the one I praise. Will you join us in that prayer?
Believing we are . . .
Esther Cottrell, State Pastor