Friends, below is a story that, I believe, will move your hearts. It certainly moved mine. Thank you to Joyce Lynn for sharing so beautifully this story of HOPE.
For my thoughts are not you thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, says the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. ~ Isaiah 55:8-9
One day, about five years ago, I noticed a new thought in my mind. Along with it was a new desire. “Our kids are grown and out of the house. We have extra beds AND an extra house right now. There are people out there that have no bed and no home. Lord, this isn’t right. You have been so generous to us. We are in a position to share. Please send whoever is in need.”
Literally, within a week, a friend of a friend at work was going through a divorce and needed a place to live. She moved into our “extra” home for six months. Within a couple months of that “new thought”, my old college roommate came back into my life, was leaving a bad situation and needed a place to live. She moved in with us for two months. I was in awe of what the Lord was doing. I believe HE gave me HIS desire and prepared my heart, marriage and home(s) for such a blessing.
The story continues… In March of 2020, about two weeks into the new reality of the Coronavirus pandemic, we received a call. We had in the weeks before passed along through new friends and acquaintances at our St Peter’s Parish and in the greater community that we had a car to donate. We had moved to Colorado a year before and were still getting a feel for the area. My heart was resting on the thought of a mom in need.
We received a call from a woman affiliated with Colorado Springs Pregnancy Center who had heard about the car. She explained there was a young woman with a crisis pregnancy who was seeking support. She was in need of a car. Yes, of course! My husband and I were invited to meet this mother. I will call her Hope, as that grace has been active in her story.
When we met Hope, our hearts were immediately moved. She had been having complications with her pregnancy, was not feeling well, and was fatigued with all else that was going on. In addition to needing a car, we learned that she also needed a place to live. There was something about Hope…
Both my husband and I had a desire to invite her into our home upon that first meeting but we went home to discuss. Hope had a poverty of spirit, humility and ability to trust that got our attention. We discussed and discerned. The world around us was shutting down with the news of the pandemic. We did not yet know what it all meant. For a brief period, we wondered the prudence of inviting Hope into our home when we were all being called to shelter in place and social distance. Our grown kids had concern for our safety from the virus by opening our home. We watch grandchildren. We wondered how we could keep us all safe.
But quickly we realized that if we cannot minister to another during this time of great need, then what’s the point? Upon reflecting back on that moment of meeting Hope, I can see God the Father’s hand in his providential love and care for her by the community of support that arose around her.
Hope lived with us for four months. Her older child came to visit as as well. There were plenty of ups and downs with her pregnancy. In her vulnerability, she navigated all the decisions and opportunities before her with great courage. During this time we fell in love with her and her children – born and unborn. Hope moved out this summer and was set up in an apartment with the help of her community. Her baby has now safely arrived. He is a precious gift.
We have a beautiful relationship with Hope and her children. We consider her as part of our family now. As our grown children meet her, they have welcomed her. She and her children are a fit with our family. We will continue to walk with her as she adjusts to the new life she has before her. Hope has been a gift to our family. She has forever changed our ability to give and receive love. She came to us during a time the world was pulling back.
And yet, the Lord invited us into the experience of “stepping out” by opening our home and lives. We have received the greater blessing.
We learned anew… The Lords ways are higher than our ways.