It’s Christmas week. A week of celebration, food, fellowship, warmth, gifts and family. Not everyone will enjoy these things. Few really know that Christ of the Bible. It’s been cold. Reminded me of an incident that happened a few years ago. I wrote about it back in 2008.
It was cold last night – good sleeping weather we like to say – if you have a cozy bed piled with quilts. Last night I got in bed with a warm feeling of security. I slept between flannel sheets. Before I went to bed I prayed to Jesus, the King of Angels, that He would watch over our home and our dreams. The house was quiet. I tumbled some scripture over in my mind while I went to sleep. I slept deeply.
Savanna did not. She was drinking with her boyfriend. He was drinking more. Things turned ugly. She was scared. She called the police. They came but did not make an arrest. She packed what she could in a bag and walked away from the house and started south. It was cold. She didn’t have warm clothes. Her bag was heavy. Eventually she ran out of sidewalk. Her thin shoes were saturated with water in the high, wet grass. She was cold and afraid. Her shoulders hurt. She thought of leaving her bag because it was too heavy to carry, but it was all she had. She finally found what shelter she could and tried to sleep.
This morning I was in a hurry. I needed to get some things from the church. I only had a minute. When I arrived at the church and bounded up the steps Savanna was there. She had spent a cold, sad, scary night praying and trying to sleep on the ground under the front entrance to our church.
The pastors and church staff went to work to get her warm and find her a little something to eat. We each took turns talking to her about the things of the Lord and her need for Jesus. Joan made some calls. The Millers drove her to meet a friend who had left from Tennessee and drove through the night to get her. We may never see her again.
Her young life has been filled with incredible hurts. Her mind is confused about what is true. She’s been abused by her family, confused by the exposure she has had to the religious people she has known. Today she is warm and safe and at least six different Christians have teamed up to help her see who Jesus really is.
PS. After Savannah was helped and connected with family from another state I found her shoe. It is a reminder to me that there is much brokenness not far from our beautiful church building.
The Pastor’s Study
October 24, 2008
Before you sleep tonight listen to this beautiful song by Fernando Ortega: Fernando Ortega’s Jesus, King of Angels
Wow…sovereignty…suffering…and the harsh reality of what happens in the neighborhoods beside our beautiful church buildings. I hate the fact that she is confused because of the “religious people she has met.” I am convinced this is one of the devil’s favorite chains for keeping his slaves….heart breaking. But greater is He…than he that is in the world.
We had a couple with a preschool child come to our church for counseling this morning. A church member who is a Nouthetic counselor meets when asked with people who need counseling. The wife is pregnant, and the husband is the one who called the church asking to speak with some one who could help them “stop fighting with each other.” During their counseling session, both the husband and wife met Jesus and asked him to become their Lord. It was a good day at our church, also. Thank you for sharing your beautiful stories of faith to encourage other believers, especially those who are part of a church staff/ministry and often meet the needs of strangers like this couple and Savanna.
Thanks for telling your story, Jan. Josiah I’m glad we are on the same team.
PLEASE HELP SAVANNA,
PUT YOUR LOVING ARMS AROUND HER AND LEAD HER ARIGHT AND GIVE HER THE COURAGE AND STRENGTH TO TRUST IN YOU.
THANK YOU , FATHER
What a beautiful story of God’s grace at work among His people…