Category: News

Susanna Wesley’s Prayer Apron by Sharon Glasgow

By Sharon Glasgow

Hidden behind the door of many homes is the reality of hardship.  Secret things happen that few want the world to know.  Yet, from some people (presently and historically) we are given the inside story, whether they want it told or not.

A devastated home isn’t always apparent on first impression, is it? Susanna Wesley was married to a preacher.  They had 10 children of which, two grew up to bring millions of souls to Christ. That would be John and Charles Wesley.  It’s a powerful story if you stop there, isn’t it?

But, behind the door of her home, hopeless conditions were the norm.  She married a man who couldn’t manage money. They disagreed on everything from money to politics.  They had 19 children.  All except ten died in infancy.  Sam (her husband) left her to raise the children alone for long periods of time.  This was sometimes over something as simple as an argument.

One of their children was crippled.  Another couldn’t talk until he was nearly six years old.  Susanna herself was desperately sick most of her life.  There was no money for food or anything.  Debt plagued them.

Sam was once thrown into debtor’s prison because their debt was so high, which doubled their problems.  Twice the homes they lived in were burned to the ground, losing everything they owned.  It was assumed that their church members did it because they were so mad at what Sam preached in the pulpit!  Someone slit their cow’s udders so they wouldn’t have milk, killed their dog, and burned their flax field!

When Susanna was young, she promised the Lord that for every hour she spent in entertainment, she would give to Him in prayer and in the Word.  Taking care of the house and raising so many kids made this commitment nearly impossible to fulfill. She had no time for entertainment or long hours in prayer!  She worked the gardens, milked the cow, schooled the children and managed the entire house herself.  So, she decided to instead give the Lord two hours a day in prayer!

She struggled to find a secret place to get away with Him.  So she advised her children that when they saw her with her apron over her head, that meant she was in prayer and couldn’t be disturbed.  She was devoted to her walk with Christ, praying for her children and knowledge in the Word no matter how hard life was.

One of her daughters got pregnant out of wedlock and the man never married her.  She was devastated, but remained steadfast in prayer for her daughter.

In the end, she knew that one day her hard life would be over and she alone would stand before the throne of God and give an account of how she lived her life.

We can be the best mom, wife, friend, person in the world and still have untold hardships.  We need to take Susanna’s example, flip our apron over our head and pray in the middle of it all.

Back to the beginning of my story…

Her son’s John and Charles were powerhouses for the glory of the Lord.  John Wesley preached to nearly a million people in his day.  At the age of 70 he delivered the gospel message of salvation to 32,000 people- without the use of a microphone!  He brought revival everywhere he traveled!  His brother Charles wrote over 9000 hymns, many of which we still sing today.

Oklahoma Council on Family Relations awards Epworth Villa

The Oklahoma Council on Family Relations gives an award each year for Community Service to nonprofits/businesses that support families in our community. This award is given annually at their state conference to recognize recipients who have gone above and beyond to support the mission of the Council in serving families in Oklahoma.  Members on the council from around the state can nominate those organizations that they deem worthy of the award.

Board Member, Dr. Glee Bertram said, “We feel that Epworth serves the community well with education programs, services for those who are aging, and have worked very well with our organization to provide a wonderful venue to provide educational information about families to people across the state.”

The award was presented at the Council’s annual Conference, April, 5th.

Amusing Advice on Aging from Animals part 2

Elephants  — Share your memories

Elephants’ brains, the largest among land mammals at about 10.5 pounds (10 percent of their body weight, vs. a human’s 2 percent), are complex. They have the ability to grieve and elephants have been observed performing burial-like ceremonies. Elephants also have excellent problem solving skills; the well-known example of Asian elephant Bandula unhooking the shackles on her feet and then freeing other captive elephants shows a keen intelligence.

Scientists have found that older elephants are better at making crucial decisions, such as searching for food and protecting the herd from predators, because of their remarkable memory. We humans can look to elephants for inspiration to share our lifetime of experiences and use our hard-earned knowledge as leaders.

The Wellness based lifestyle that we offer at Epworth Villa can challenge you intellectually, physically and spiritually.  Our philosophy is enhancing lives, so people thrive.  We aim to add more life experiences and memories to each and every Resident’s life.

Amusing Advice on Aging from Animals

Tortoises — Take life slow and enjoy the ride

Tortoises are one of the most ancient creatures on the planet, living up to 150 years old.  They average a speed of .17 mph.  They’re not winning sprints, but they are highly effective burrowers and have evolved to survive harsh conditions.  They can endure quite a lot.  Tortoises may not be what you’d call the sexiest animals around, but they teach an important life lesson: Slow and steady wins the race.

Some Epworth Villa Residents heed this advice and take things as they come, while others are constantly on the go.  Just because one takes things in at a leisurely pace as another runs from one commitment to another doesn’t mean that they aren’t both living life to the fullest.

The great thing about Epworth Villa is that you can choose to take life a little slower or fly by the seat of your pants and go, go, go!  It’s all up to you!  We offer a lifestyle for everyone.  Take a look at our Weekly Happenings to see what is going on!

Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday in the Christian Church is the start of the Season of Lent. Ash Wednesday is one of the more important observances, because it is the one day of the year when Christians think about their own death. While the Catholic tradition has practiced Ash Wednesday and Lent for many years, it has only recently started to be observed by many Protestant traditions.

Epworth Villa’s Ash Wednesday service was held in the style of Prayer Stations. This means, attendees came and went as their time allowed.  After walking into the Brill Chapel, Residents and Employees were greeted by stations set around the room. Guests were welcome to visit each station and move between them as they wished.  The Prayer Stations were available in the Brill Chapel from 11:30 am to 1:00 pm. Chaplains were on hand for the Imposition of Ashes, as well as to answer questions and requests for prayer. Thanks to all who made time to visit the Brill Chapel on Ash Wednesday.

History of Epworth Villa-Part 1

An excerpt from the “History of Epworth Villa:”
In the third year of his tenure (1983,) Bishop John Wesley Hardt, a man of action rather than dreams, asked Dr. Charles Wells, Director of Children, Youth and Family Ministries and Dr. Elwyn Thurston, Director of the United Methodist Foundations to explore possibilities of including such a retirement facility in the ministry of The Oklahoma Conference of the The United Methodist Church.”

That was just the beginning…..stay tuned for more of the history of Epworth Villa.

Special Agent in Charge

Earlier this month, Kathryn Peterson, Special Agent in Charge of the Oklahoma City Field Office was the guest speaker for the February Women’s Coffee at Epworth Villa.  Women’s Coffee leader, Sonie Liebler welcomed the guests.  Resident, Marilyn Williams gave a brief devotion and offered the opening prayer.  She gave thanks for the FBI and those who protect us.  She prayed for the protection of those who protect us and their families.

Peterson told the group of her journey to her current position  She also talked about how devoted her employees and agents are, and how they worked and did not get paid during the most recent government shutdown.  Peterson also spoke to the fact that government agencies work together so much more now than they have in the past.

She touched on the fact that the FBI faces challenges with technology and encrypted communication.  The legalities that prohibit gaining useful information has been a stumbling block.

Increased outreach and work with the private sector has increased at the FBI.  Partnerships with the community have proven to be beneficial in an effort to serve all.

Peterson spoke of recruiting new agents.  She suggested that the FBI is a calling – not just a job!

Winter Film Festival

Resident Walt Lambert has set the dates and chosen the movies for this year’s Winter Film Festival.  The Festival is slated to begin 2:00 pm Sunday, February 17th and run daily through Friday, February 22nd and will feature Robert Duvall in his Greatest Roles.  Duvall was suggested by resident, Jimette McLean.  McLean said that Duvall is her favorite actor because of his long career playing a variety of characters.  His reach as an actor is great.  Second Hand Lions is McLean’s favorite Duvall movie, even though she feels like it wasn’t his best role.  On the other hand, she thinks his best part was in The Apostle.  McLean says that in this role as a preacher Duvall portrays a consummate saint AND sinner.

Lambert said that he assumed the responsibility of creating the Film Festival as well as other weekly movies.  He streams the movies on iTunes.  Last summer he held a festival that heralded Broadway musicals.  Approximately 25 residents attend daily, as well as residents from Assisted Living.  Lambert also runs weekly movies.  He says that if a movie is popular, he will run it 2-3 times in the Epworth Villa Theatre.

Make Your Steps Count

It seems every day we pass someone anxiously looking at their wrist to see if they are on pace to reach the coveted 10,000 steps goal. But is this really a goal worth striving for, or might there be something better?

Professor Rob Copeland from Sheffield Hallam University performed an experiment comparing the benefits of 10,000 steps against something called “Active 10.” With Active 10 there is no step counting. The goal is to do three brisk 10-minute walks a day aiming to walk fast enough to work the heart and lungs while still being able to hold a conversation. The volunteer group was fitted with wearable fitness monitors to measure what they did and how vigorously they did it.

The group tasked with completing 10,000 steps (around 5 miles) only had 66% actually reach the goal and all found the task difficult. The Active 10 group, on the other hand, found their task relatively easy and all volunteers completed the task.

Professor Copeland analyzed the data and found that the Active 10 group actually did 30% more moderate to vigorous physical activity than the 10,000 step group. He noted, “And it’s when you are doing moderate intensity activity that you are starting to get the greatest health benefits.”

It’s worth noting that doing something is better than doing nothing, and while striving to complete 10,000 steps a day is beneficial, we can really improve our cardiovascular health by increasing the intensity with our exercise. Make your steps count!

Blaine Jackson, NASM-CPT, Wellness Coordinator