A lot happened in 1896. In England, Guglielmo Marconi patented his newest invention—the radio. In New York, Leo Hirshfield introduced the Tootsie Roll (64 million are now made daily, only 40 miles away from our community). In Athens, the first modern Olympics in more than 1500 years was held; and in Chicago, Reverend Jacob Meier opened the doors of Central Baptist Village to twelve residents in a remodeled house. We have provided a loving home to, and celebrated the lives of, thousands of seniors ever since.
A key factor that has bolstered CBV for 125 years continues to flourish this year: the resilience of residents, their families, and staff. We persevered when welcomed and long-awaited reopenings of communities and businesses reverted to closings. We kept our collective cool when receiving conflicting information about COVID-19 from different government health agencies. We held onto hope when the latest virus variants emerged. Dedicated workers that have served here for decades intend to stay here for more years to come; longevity is a core sign of resiliency.
The ongoing and encouraging response to our Home for Life fund is helping to ensure a positive future for those who may exhaust their resources. As I write this, the facility renovations taking place flow from our prevailing confidence in God’s continuing favor on our community. Remodeled rooms and new spaces reflect reinvigorated connections for residents and visiting families and friends.
In the verse above, the idea of being struck down suggests the terrible blows inflicted from ancient Olympic sports, such as boxing. Hardships may knock you down, but they don’t have to knock you out. This athletic image could also be borrowed from wrestling. You may feel pinned; yet you can refuse to concede the match. You take solace in knowing that the ultimate score has not been declared: God has not blown the final whistle.
During our 125th Anniversary, we are engaged in a far more vital and enduring endeavor. Let us keep pressing onward and upward. Let us be resilient in our resilience. In the words of 2 Thessalonians 3:5, May the Lord direct your hearts into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance.