It is with some sadness, yet also much gratitude, that I can advise that our oldest member and dear sister, Irene Oliver, has moved into a care home in Fareham, close to where her daughter Christine and family live. Irene has become increasingly frail and has suffered a number of falls, the most recent resulting in a stay in Frimley Park Hospital. Whilst she was always very keen to return to her home, let us really pray that she will settle quickly and enjoy her new surroundings in Fareham.
Many of us will always remember her lovely testimony to the “coping grace” of God, her standard reply to the question “how are you?” being “coping”. It has been especially moving to hear her say on so many occasions how the Lord had been a wonderful husband to her, following her beloved husband’s death over 50 years ago.
Whilst all of God’s attributes are glorious, perhaps His grace is especially precious. The Bible talks of the riches of His grace (Ephesians 1v7; 2v7) and Paul testifies of the grace of God being “poured out on [him] abundantly” (1 Timothy 1v14). Irene has consistently spoken of the coping, or enabling grace of God – like Paul she has experienced the Lord confirming “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12v9).
We will miss Irene. May we all, like her, receive, rely on and speak to others of the coping grace of God.
Peace and Grace