Push is coming to shove now…Christmas is just 2 weeks away and I have birthdays before and after and a 3-day trip. How will I ever get ready?
My neighbor had a lovely party Saturday night. Her house was beautifully decorated – as was the whole neighborhood. Yes, I did get my house somewhat decorated – my oldest daughter helped bring the smaller tree from the attic so it could go by the front door as well as 3 pretty red lanterns with “automatic” candles inside.
On Saturday, we had 2 inches of snow so it was very Christmassy. The houses were all decorated – lights twinkling from every window. The “town” Christmas tree was all lit up and everything looked so festive. As I walked out the door, I could hear voices coming from every corner. And as we left, I could hear each one call “Merry Christmas!” Almost like in the movie, “It’s a Wonderful Life”.
Then yesterday I was ordering Christmas gifts on-line but was frustrated with one website – it wasn’t doing what I thought it should so I called their 800 number. A very pleasant woman offered to help me with an online order, because that would give me a better discount than if I simply made a phone order. I was all for that!
When It came time to give my credit card information, I gave the name on the card: Ruth B. Graham. She took it down and then said, “You have a famous name.” I replied, “I have a famous father.” She didn’t comment. But she continued to ask for information. Shortly, she tentatively asked me, “Are you by any chance related to Billy Graham?” I told her he is my father. She was so pleased – she had been a counselor in his Cleveland crusade years before. She loved him and my family.
In our conversation she indicated she has two grown children who are “prodigals”. The church has not been kind to her husband – he is in a new church now – not as senior pastor – but the senior pastor is good and her husband enjoys working with him. The transition hasn’t been easy.
As we wound up the order, I asked if I could pray for her. She agreed. I prayed for her two children and her husband. I told her to tell him not to get discouraged; God would honor his faithfulness to His Word.
What an unexpected gift for both of us! I was just ordering from a stranger…an ordinary act – she was just taking orders from strangers who called in. An ordinary day.
But we had a divine encounter! While we started as strangers we finished as sisters!
Only Jesus can do that!
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