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Guest Blogger: Anthony Varesio (November 10, 2009)

November 10, 2009 0 comments

Today’s Pulse of NewLife is written by guest writer Anthony Varesio. Anthony and his wife Carrie live in Glastonbury, and have been attending NewLife for about eight months.

Testimony of Gratitude

This past week I found myself in the hospital with a rather disconcerting medical situation. As I lay in my cardboard hospital bed, attached to a rat’s nest of tubes and wires, I awaited for the revolving parade of various medical professionals to poke, prod, scan, and otherwise find ways to make my stay a “spa of discomfort”. The spaces in-between offered time for me to sip on a brew of my family woes, financial challenges, the haunting of tasks and responsibilities that I inevitably must face and a myriad of other troubles that have been gnawing at me for some time. I craftily created a cozy little hot tub of self-pity in which to bathe in. Then my first hospital meal was served…….After a brief nap I awoke feeling colorless, dried out, cold, and having no flavor for life. (Quite like the meal I just ate.) I stared at the clock on the wall and watched the second hand turn; five minutes took an eternity. So I prayed. My prayer digresses to thoughts of NewLife Christian Fellowship. As I drift through my experiences at NewLife I begin to feel relief. I begin to realize what this fellowship has come to mean to me. I have experienced and been part of many recovery fellowships, religious organizations, and support groups in varying capacities. My desire was always to simply connect with a spiritual, supportive, and God-loving community. I always engaged with sincerity, high hopes, and passion. In each attempt I found myself being profoundly disappointed, disengaged, and leaving less hopeful each time. I witnessed internal debacles that arose from power struggles, clouded objectives, absence of dedication and/or passion, personality conflicts, complacency, decimated convictions, and various other conditions that result from human nature. My wife, Carrie, and I were in awe of NewLife from our very first visit. We both knew that the sincerity, passion, community commitment, and religious commitment could not possibly be ersatz. We both cried that day. We were warmly greeted, engaged, and our hearts filled with hope from the words of the sermon. It has only become better from that first day. I see a community of Christ that seems to truly live “The Way”. Principles are put before personalities (which I know is in itself a difficult task!), Christian tenets are actually applied at New Life instead of conveniently being called upon for personal gain or used as leverage in factional disputes, and a true sense of cohesiveness seems to be present within the church leadership.New Life has given me a new life. I can’t tell you the impact that you have had on me; it wasn’t looking good for me for awhile.I wish to thank the congregation for their warmth, friendship, support, and genuine willingness to embrace me as their brother.I wish to thank the Elders for the support they have offered, tireless dedication, commitment to NewLife that sustains what I now consider a precious part of my life, the wisdom to lead and support the congregation with true Christian values and avoiding those aforementioned pitfalls that can undermine any group of people.I wish to thank Eric for helping me to see the light of Christ and being blessed with such an incredible talent and passion for delivering the Word of God and his wife Michele for her energy, love, and commitment to the “Unnamed Ministries” which are just as critical to the success of NewLife.Thank you all, you are a special community of Christ.

“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)

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