Monday, April 9, 2012

An Encounter With Hope!

It was almost a year ago when I posted about My Little Man With a Big Heart. I realized that he may potentially have a calling on his life and it was important for me to foster that. So we ended up seeking a way that we can be a light in our community. For just about a year now we've been helping, along with others, serve food to the hungry once a month - see this post. We have developed amazing relationships and deep love for these people. Then several months ago our children's director at our church asked us to help pilot this missions minded project called Mission Possible. Of course then I Left My Heart In Eustis...yes...I pray for those children every single day. All of this, coupled with the fact that I'm working on memorizing the book of James and doing Beth Moore's Study Mercy Triumphs and a large part of James regards our heart for the lost, the poor, the widows, the orphans. Well, the only surprise today was that it was Monday as we normal try to devote Wednesdays to really focus on what God would have us do, how He would have us pray for the lost in our community and in our world. Actually, I love when God interrupts our plans, because His are always better.

So on with it Lisa! Today we had to go to the library to begin our research papers. Since I'm working on getting fit..and possibly thinking of a Triathlon (shhhh..I haven't announced that officially -- you know that means on Facebook right?) I figured I'm gonna ride my bike whenever I can..since I'm already running and then we just have to work on swimming. I digress. We ride our bikes (we meaning my superheros and I). Get to the library and get our books only to find that my one son's back tire is flatter than flat. There is no way he is going to make it another 2.2 miles home..just walking. So I pull out my phone and begin to make the phone calls. Two of my friends have no car, one was apparently mowing his lawn and numerous people didn't answer the phone. Hmmm?

There she was....having a bad day. So Kyle decides that maybe if he gave her a magazine it would make her smile. She smiled as she sat on the bench next to mine. She had grabbed some guy to come and tie her shoes..I'm thinking because she was too strung out on drugs to do it. She talks to Kyle and says nice and loud, "Do you think we could ask your Mom if I could borrow her phone?" So I reply, "sure can I call someone for you." I am pretty sure that my children were watching this all go down...very carefully. "Well, I need to call it, I'm really a nice person, can I just use your phone..if anyone calls you back about your tire, I will give it back!" I hand her my phone. My one son says, so astutely, "Are you worried she might steal it?"

Well, yes, that thought crossed my mind for a moment. Then I remembered, everything is His anyway. She made a few phone calls and as I listened to bits of her conversations I realized her life is hard - possibly by her own bad decisions, possibly some challenges that have come her way for whatever reason...possibly both. It was my moment. I asked if everything was ok...she replied..."Oh you don't want to hear my sob story!" Well, actually, I'm pretty sure that I'm stranded here for that very reason...with all 3 of my superheros right next to me. "YES, I do...please tell me your story. Oh and I'm Lisa by the way!"

For the next hour we sat and talked. She confessed that she was living on the streets, poverty stricken, addicted to pain medication, stemming from an accident she had a few years back, had stolen from the dollar store, was 20 years old, had a 3 year old son and hated her life...all she wanted was a good night sleep. She had a fight with her Mom the night before and slept on her front porch. She was at her end and really didn't have hope.

Well, you could have blown me down with a feather! I'm teaching on Hope at Bagels & Blessings (I have been for the past year...my final B&B for this season is...Saturday). He is our Hope! We talked about the local shelters, food pantries...etc. I was about to ask her if I could pray for her...so I said..."I wish I could do more, but can I...(and before I could get the rest of the words out she cried..."can you pray for me?" I was just about to say that. I asked if she had a relationship with Jesus. We went through the ABCs of salvation. She prayed that prayer with me. Then I began to hold her and pray over her as she wept in my arms right there on the curb of the library.

She couldn't stop crying. I just sat and held her hand, and put my arm around her. Sometimes you just need someone to put your arm around you. Finally someone came to pump Kyle's tire and she knew I didn't have much time to get home before it would go flat again. She asked me why my children were not in school and I told her I  homeschooled. She asked if I might teacher her math so she could pass her GED. "If I could get my GED maybe my life would be different!" I gave her my number and told her I would do it. I would teach her what she needed to pass the GED. We embraced. She told my kids to "Stay away from drugs!" ;) and off we went.

Kyle: "Mom, you gave her Jesus today!" WOW - I'm often shocked at his abilities (being my boy on the spectrum)!

When we got home my Shane had lots of questions about what she talked about. Abuse, drugs, homelessness..."Mom, what if she has to sleep on the streets tonight can we bring her some food?" YES!

I made lunches for everyone including our new friend. We drove it to the library. Peanut butter and jelly, an apple, banana, and orange, some peeps and other candy and a bottle of water. It really was all I had..it was what my children ate too. She saw me, my boy hands her the bag and I tell her..."Lunch. Because we love you and want you to remember how much you are loved by the Hope of this world...Jesus!" She was so thankful. Her friend was there now too. She asked if I could pray for her too. Of course! They both cried. She looked up at her friend and she said..."I want to go to Lisa's church...I want to turn my life around!" She hugged me and told me I was an angel. I reminded her that no...I was a girl..just like her...saved by Grace. I asked her to just think about what we had prayed about...and consider this a gift of love from Jesus, the One who Loves you just as you are..and longs to rescue you..if you allow Him to.

I don't know if I will ever see her again. Possibly, this could be her story...ten years from now. I know one thing for sure. She had an encounter with Jesus today...and so did we.

3 comments:

The Average Jones said...

I pray a lot for strength like yours.

Allison Reynolds said...

Wow- amazing what God presents you with. He is awesome! Even iif you never see her against doesn't matter...you gave hope! Allison

Jamie Sulle said...

Not a candle light but a LIGHTHOUSE!! PTL for what 3 future fathers and husbands witnessed. What I love it that as the boys described this event to me they simply shared that Mom prayed for this lady. ALmost as is they were describing a reflex action. Oh to stop, embrass and pray for the least...AS A REFLEX. I say YES, YES, YES!!