I met a visitor at the church we are attending a few Sundays ago. She was from a state north, visiting some mutual friends down here for the weekend who also attend our church. She didn’t look old enough to have daughters in their 20′s and was so incredibly kind and sweet from the moment we said hello. Maybe she took pity on me due to the the the 5 small bodies that were clustered around me, or maybe it was the unbeknownst glazed over look on my face…trying to keep tabs on the kiddos while also attempting to be social. Or…maybe it was just the Spirit of God causing her to walk in the good works he had planned out for her. Whatever it was, she took an interest in me and blew me away with her “older woman-ness”. I was so encouraged by her that day.
Then today, I got a call from the mutual friend that she was on her way to my house with food that this sweet and kind lady sent down to me, via another visiting friend from the same area up north. Really? She was sending me (basically a stranger) food, hundreds of miles away. Love has arms and feet. Christ’s body reaches it’s fingers into hearts and souls near and far at just a needed moment. It reminded me of all the times the Lord has used His people to encourage my soul. And on top of it all, she knew we were on a Paleo-type diet and made food accordingly that we could all eat.
And it all was especially meaningful and encouraging because today has been one of those “last-rope” kind of days for me. It is so easy to get focused on how far short I fall on the “work out your own salvation with fear and trembling…” Forgetting that “for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.” Philippians 2:12b-13 Fear, anger and worry – which are all opposites of faith – so easily entangle my soul. But how kind of the Lord to (again) encourage my soul through this dear saint. With the food, she enclosed this letter to me:
Through tears, I thanked the Lord for this kind encouragement and godly example from someone further along the path of faith and Christ-likeness to help prop me back up today. Just the knowledge that these kind of women actually live and breathe (first) gave me hope! And second of all, it encouraged me that I can learn so much about being that kind of woman through such a godly example. I pray that I learn to be more sensitive to the Spirit and be always on the lookout for ways to encourage and help younger women in the faith. And I even got that Star Bucks coffee break with my friend who delivered it all (another godly woman who lives and breathes “older woman-ness”). Just her earthy encouragement and listening ear helped to bring about some needed repentance in my life – over a Peppermint White Mocha. It reminds me of the verse that says, “God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance.” Romans 2:4 Thank you Jesus!
(And the two bags of cookies were devoured by the kids, along with the big bag of cut-up carrots within 2 hours time. Hee!! No need for refrigeration here. )