A Surprise Birthday Party

The years of our life are seventy, or even by reason of strength eighty. Psalm 90:10 ESV

Did I organize a surprise birthday party? No! Did I get a surprise party? No! But I WAS A SURPRISE! That feels good!

The surprise was that I got invited to celebrate one of my former missionary colleagues from Peru, Lennart Lindgren. And my friend did not know I was coming! By reason of strength he is now eighty years old. Once upon a time being eighty seamed ancient. Now I’m fast approaching that milestone. Here is my friend:

Lennart 80I was a teenager when Lennart and his new bride came to Peru to work together with my parents in the ministry they had established, the churches known as Casa de Oración.

When Bengt, my late husband arrived in Peru as a young missionary (we were going to be married), I proposed we play a little joke on him. Lennart and Boyan (his wife) and I were meeting him at the airport. We would tell him they were my parents. Bengt didn’t buy that! He thought they looked too young. Bengt forgave us and then became very good friends with his new missionary colleague. Lennart and his wife were the witnesses at out wedding.

Lennart 80 17 ENGHere we are, some of the retired missionaries. from left to right: my father, Per Anderås, myself, Anita and Carlos (back row), Boyan and Lennart. Combining our individual involvement in missions in Peru it adds up to more than 175 years!

Lennart 80 11 ENGThe dinner and the cakes and all the goodies where organized by Lennart’s two sons and daughter’s in law. I got excited because the napkins for the desserts where with daisies. Margarita is my signature for my Spanish ministry.

Lennart  80 09IMG_3743 3Lennart  80 04The Marguerite’s and the beautiful spring-like flowers were o joy to behold. But to see my friends again was a treat.

Lennart  80 12Lennart and Boyan and their two sons. Back left: David and his Norwegian wife. Right: Samuel and his daughter. His wife had back-pain so she couldn’t come.

Lennart  80 02Carlos, Anita and my Dad. My sister is not shown in the picture; she was our driver. We joked about how “young” we felt among all the “older” guests.

My sister told us about the couple who forgot things. They had the advice of a therapist to write things down. (Like most of us attending the party have to do!)

One evening the wife wanted ice creme so she asked her husband to get some. He started for the kitchen. “Write it down,” the wife said. “No, that’s easy to remember,” said the husband.

“By the way, bring some whipped creme with it. But write it down,” asked the wife. “No,” said the husband. “I’ll remember it!”

“Why don’t you bring some strawberries to go with it,” added the wife. “But write it down!”

The husband was sure he’d remember what the wife wanted, so he didn’t write it down.

In a short while he was back, bringing toast and  fried eggs. “Oh, no,” said the wife. “I told you to write it down! I wanted bacon to go with it!”

I feel proud that I remembered the joke, and I didn’t even write it down!

It’s going to be an eventful couple of weeks to come. I have taken vacation from my weekly story for children. Guess what? My daughter and her family have come to Sweden for a visit. I think she has waited for this many years, to show her family her roots.

The joy of the surprise party (surprise for me, not for Lennart!) is over. I wished him at least 20 more years. That will be a great party to celebrate. But we always have the hope that the next big party will be in Heaven, with Jesus at the head of the table!

I hope to see you there!

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About kelund

My name is Kerstin Anderas-Lundquist. I was born in Sweden to Per & Brita Anderas, on March 6, 1946. In 1948 we left to begin a missionary life in Chile; in 1956 we moved on to Peru. On May 1, 1969 I married an all-Swedish guy from Karslkrona: Bengt Göran Emanuel Lundquist. God blessed us with two daughters: Eva-Marie Elizabeth and Ruth Carina. We served as missionaries in Peru and Bolivia. In 1988 we moved to the United States to work at Life Publishers in Miami, Florida. I was to assist in developing the line of Sunday School Curriculm in Spanish known as Vida Nueva. I live in Springfield, Missouri, and am retired from work at the Assemblies of God Headquarters. My husband and daughter Eva-Marie have been promoted to Heaven. Carina is married to Thom Cole and they have given me four gourgeous grandchildren, even five (teen-age John). I will be writing about my life, past and present, blended with visions for the future. My deepest desire is to spread the “seed of love”–inspiration to serve God and our neighbors with love and compassion.
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