Feb 10, 2019

Dear family and friends,

The door bell sang out at just a little before 8 in the morning. I was still lying in bed, pondering and praying. I got to the door opening it to find a short older woman already at the sidewalk. I called out, “You rang the door bell?” Long grey hair draped down over her shoulders onto the spotted and worn dark brown jacket that nearly came to her knees. She was short, not looking to be even five feet tall, it seemed to me. Her sweater was with a few small stains. She had a bit of nose that protruded over her mouth that kind of caved into her face with the loss of some teeth. She made me think of some kind of fable munchkin.

“I was wondering if Lu was still here in the house”, she said as she made it way back up to the door. “Is she in a nursing home?, I heard she was.” “No, she is okay, just gone for a bit, but she is healthy.” I didn’t want to alarm the woman. And yet we have been trying to be careful to not make it known that her house is empty these days. And I did not know who this woman was anyway. “I’m sorry, who are you?” I asked. “I’m Sunshine, I live across the street over there” As she points around the corner. “When Dave died, Lu came over to tell me, she cried in my arms.” I had not heard this story, but it touched me deeply to know that Mom had friends in the neighborhood she could turn to in her time of need. “You Lu’s son?” “ Yes, I am Dale, thank you for being there for my Mom.” I responded. “Is she okay?, I was told she was in a nursing home.” No she is just away for awhile, but is fine. In fact she will be over her later today if you want to come by and see her.” Then Sunshine asked what I do, and when I told her I was a pastor, she asked if maybe I could help her. In the moment, my mind began to imagine what kind of help she might be looking for; finances, food, a ride, etc. But I heard a steady reminder in my soul, “Just listen”. She shared how she was raised as an Atheist. Yet recently, someone invited her to church, she went for some months and enjoyed it. But she felt she was not being honest because she didn’t believe in her heart like the rest. She felt it was more honest not to go to church if she didn’t have the faith. She went on to explain that she has a good heart, helps others, even prays for people. She sometimes sees Jesus in her thoughts when she is praying and it is comforting. When she told the church her struggles and decision to not attend, they accused her of being evil. So she asked, “Am I evil?”

I looked at her and prayed quietly for discernment. It was evident to me this woman had a good heart, good integrity to be honest, and a sincere desire to find hope and peace for her life.

While the conversation went on a bit more, with questions and her sharing, it was clear to me, she wanted to know more of Jesus in ways I don’t often find in people. So I asked her if she wanted to know God more? She said yes. I encouraged her to ask Jesus to come into her heart and make Himself known to her. She said she could do that. “Then I’m not evil?” “No, I said, you are loved by God. Jesus says so and gave His life for you and me to show it.” We prayed briefly. She asked for a hug, and I was blessed.

I wish Sunshine could know the warm embrace of Christ presence here at Wellspring. It is a deep joy to be back among you. I thank God for you.

Pastor Dale

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