Does She Still Pray?

February 28, 2008, 12:00 pm; posted by
Filed under Articles, David, Featured  | 2 Comments

I can’t remember her name — it was 10 years ago — but I still see her face clearly. She was terrified and shaking, chased by terrors in a way that I sometimes forget can happen to people on the outside of these massive walls with which God secures his Kingdom. She was on the outside, plagued by real demons — not metaphors — which ruled her desires, leaving her helpless, looking like she would bolt at any second if she had anywhere else to run. I only met her because I had to drop some paperwork off at a co-worker’s house. She was standing in his living room. My heart broke to see her; I could not leave without sharing the Gospel with her.

She was my co-worker’s mother, a lesbian caught in drugs, alcohol and a cycle of violence perpetrated by her truck-driving partner. She had been estranged from her son, but knew nowhere else to run, and so showed up on his doorstep that day seeking shelter. In the next few days, my wife and I talked with her a lot and led her to Jesus. The angels rejoiced with us at her deliverance and she was free. That Sunday, she came to church, along with her son and his family.

At the time we attended a large AG church that believed in having nationally-known speakers visit, and one was scheduled for that morning. After over 2 hours of “Pentecostal preaching,” they excused themselves and left before the service was over. I don’t know why, thinking back, we didn’t go with them to eat lunch and talk. It was the last time I ever saw her. I guess we still believed it was a sign of weakness to leave church before the service was over.

Looking back now, I feel like I was grasping for her hand as she was drowning, and I let her slip away. Her son told me she had plunged back into her old life, criss-crossing the country with her abusive partner.

It’s the kind of thing I think about when I can’t sleep, and the fiend (as Luther called him) haunts me with all my past failures, into the wee hours of the morning. It happened last night, and then an encouraging thought occurred to me — I wonder if she still prays?

I wonder if perhaps she is not lost, but a sheep gone astray.

I wonder if she hates her life as much as always, and is gathering the strength to come back to some altar, somewhere — to find that His promises are forever.


Comments

2 Comments to “Does She Still Pray?”

  1. Rodney Olsen on February 28th, 2008 7:44 pm

    Thanks for your beautiful honesty.

    I’m so glad that the Holy Spirit continues to whisper gently to those God loves and that God is bigger than our mistakes.

    When I think of all the opportunities that I’ve let slip I’m just glad that, despite what some people will try and tell you, God is able to create other opportunities for those who need to hear about him. In the end it is their choice to accept or reject Christ.

    My dad came to faith early in his life then walked away from God after returning from WWII. It was in the final week of his life that he finally listened to the Spirit and as he put it, “Put things right with Jesus.”

  2. David on February 28th, 2008 8:37 pm

    Amen. Thank you.

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