Last evening Stewart was awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal and I was awarded the privilege of an invitation to the event. Although low key in ambiance, it was a prestigious occasion.
Over the years, Mr. Alsgard has been known as His Worship Mayor Alsgard, Stewart Alsgard, The Coroner, and Mr. Alsgard, astute participant in treaty negotiations between the City of Powell River and the Tla’amin (Sliammon) First Nation. I’ve lived here less than a decade so I don’t know him by other titles; I do, however, know him as a friend.
I remember the first time he invited me to call him by his given name. Now I was raised to respect both my elders and those in authority. Call the mayor by his given name? Never on your life! Though he and I are in approximately the same age-group-decade, it took me a long time before I felt comfortable with the moniker.
It’s easy now. “Hi Stewart,” I call out when I see him or when I phone to chat with his sister. I even tease him that endorsing my recently published book was enough to get Her Majesty’s attention and have her grant him that fancy medal.
Stewart earned his accolades and he’s been recognized by a community that appreciates the work he has done. But what about those people whose work may never be seen or publicly acknowledged? What comfort to realize that God records every deed of kindness, every act of love and every sacrifice of self on behalf of someone who is in need.
“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.” 1 Corinthians
The One who cared enough to die for us is the heavenly King who rewards His own.