Saturday, July 17, 2010

God Bless the Little Old Church Lady

Everyone knows them.

Tight curls, usually a blueish hue to their perm. Some of them sit in the back row of the sanctuary while others march to the front row every Sunday.

They never miss a meeting.

When you hear the phrase "pot-blessing" from the platform you immediately think of them and pray like you never have before that they will attend. You truly enjoy their company but you have taken a shining to their usual date to such functions, Mr. Apple Pie.

During prayer time their eyes are usually shut the longest.

During the worship portion of the service they stand like troopers mouthing something reminiscent to the latest worship songs with the hymnal spread open wide.

If you get a look at their bible it puts you to shame and makes you chuckle because it looks like they are carrying a dog's chew toy.

While the minister reads the prayer list from the pulpit they scribble like mad in their little journals the names and circumstances so that it is certain that these requests get prayed for.

God Bless the Little Old Church Lady.

In our store we sell religious greeting cards. My days are not complete unless I have had my regulars come through my door and make a direct march toward the card section. Most of these people are little, white topped, curly mopped, widowed women who are looking for the perfect sentiment written in between the cover of a card. Most of the time I have to get off my chair to see them because the counter is a little bit too high. They peruse the card racks, reading many, choosing only the special one that will brighten someones day. We chat a little about the weather, they tell me about the next church function and what they will be contributing. They purchase their card and usually head off with a "God Bless".

Too cute.

This morning my door swung open. I heard the steps of someone. From behind the bookshelves popped a white top. She greeted me with a big smile and "Hello Dear". As she made her way around the counter she told me she was not here to purchase anything today but to talk. She grabbed me with those tiny little arms and gave me a mighty squeeze. With tears in her eyes she said with the utmost sincerity, "I have been praying for you".

Her words did not shock me. She is the Little Old Church Lady, of course she has been praying for me, that's what she does. I sometimes think that they get a commission from God that comes from our tithes because of their faithfulness in prayer.

We continued to chat and she told me how she loved me and my husband and has been praying for us and will continue to pray as long as we need it. She held my hand and squeezed it every few minutes as she spoke with love. She shared with me her own personal victories and told me how God was watching over us in love. She quoted scripture and smiled with assurance in the words that she spoke. Her certainty twanged at my heart and I knew in that moment that God was watching over me.

As she was walking toward the door to leave, we continued to talk. She repeated that she would be praying. She told me that our names were written in the sacred prayer journal that she keeps on her night table and it was #1 on the list. How I attained the #1 spot is unknown to me but I wont bock at it. As she was about to depart, she looked me deep in the eyes and said, "Leah I love you, and if nothing I said today meant anything I hope that my dropping by was an encouragement and that you would know that I am 1 of many who are thinking of you and praying. God has a plan and he knew you before you were born. Just trust."

With that she opened the door and she was gone.

My heart smiled today.

The faithfulness of this woman is astounding. She did not have to listen to that little voice inside that told her that I was her mission for today. Yet she did. I didn't get the chance to tell her that not only was everything that she had done and said an encouragement but that it was also a sign from God. This was His way of telling me that when I lie there in the early mornings crying out to Him he hears me. He hears me and the little old church lady.

All I could say to her was "thank you" and "you made my heart smile today".

God Bless the Little Old Church Lady.


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