Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Lowest Moments

Almost three years ago, our family went on a vacation that ended with my husband preaching a trial sermon for the church we currently serve. That weekend, we met the whole church at a potluck dinner. I don't remember too many details about it, like who I sat with or the things we talked about. I was two weeks away or so from giving birth to our third daughter, so I was focusing on staying really still in order to not go into labor before we got home, three hours away from where I was supposed to give birth. My husband, however, remembers a lot of details. One such detail is that he was hit really hard by an elderly man named Elvin.

As it turned out, Mr. Elvin had once been a boxer in his younger days. He built a successful business to support his family, and he really loved his wife Dorothy. Now, in his eighties, he was suffering from Alzheimer's. Mr. Elvin was what I've heard described as "happily confused". If he couldn't spot Mrs. Dorothy, he would most likely ask people if they had seen his girlfriend. How precious is that? My girls fell in love with him. Every Sunday, he would tease them, calling them boys, and they would giggle.

Last May, Mr. Elvin drove off into the sunset alone. In the days following his disappearance, my husband spent a good deal of time with Mrs. Dorothy and her family. When appropriate, we try to involve our children in ministry, to train them to be little ministers. Children can bring joy in ways we can't as adults. Our girls had been praying for Mr. Elvin to be found, so we decided to go see Mrs. Dorothy and pray with her.

We arrived at Mrs. Dorothy and Mr. Elvin's home while a news crew was there to do an interview with their son-in-law. My game plan changed a little with them there because I needed to keep my then four-year-old, three-year-old, and not-quite-two-year-old from becoming too loud for the taping taking place in the next room. My husband spoke with Mrs. Dorothy at her kitchen table, and then she called me from my work to create a Titus 2 Moment. At her lowest time, Mrs. Dorothy wanted to show me, a younger woman, the scripture that was calming her heart and giving her peace in the midst of chaos. After we prayed with our children also holding our hands and bowing their heads, Mrs. Dorothy said the news crews were missing the real story, that in her kitchen is where the real story was taking place. She was glorifying God in her trial.

In a few days, Mr. Elvin was found. God had called him to Glory. Even in the midst of her grief, Mrs. Dorothy continued to look for opportunities to share the ways that God had taught her and of the love story God had created for her and Mr. Elvin. I know that I've been able to share the lessons I've learned from difficult situations, but I hope that as I face trials that will undoubtedly come my way in the future, that I will look for others God may want me to teach in the midst of my trial as this Wednesday's Woman did for me.

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