September 25, 2017
It's now been a month since Harvey made landfall. We will never be the same.
I was called to the front desk in the middle of a typically busy Sunday morning. There stood Elizabeth.
Persecuted for their faith, her family fled from India when she was a little girl. But her faith has been forged on the battlefield of life and suffering many other times throughout her days, and is now hammered into a beautiful masterpiece at 81 years old.
Deep, rolling accent, sometimes i only figure out about every third word, but I love her dearly and cherish her reciprocated love and encouragement. She still serves faithfully in VBS, and only recently stepped down from teaching preschool Sunday School to care for her beloved husband Samuel, who changed addresses about a year or so ago, and now daily sees the face of the Father.
Grabbing my hand, her voice choking, she begged me to pray for her. Elizabeth's home flooded with over five feet of water, and she stood there in tears, a month later, having lost everything... Everything left after 81 years, everything left of her dear Samuel, everything left from her long ago childhood in India, every picture, every shred of life. Everything. Yes, it's only things, it's not eternal. But it was everything. Period. Everything.
We prayed. She needed more, so i walked with her down the hall to the Resource Room and we sat. She broke down. She talked. She cried. Her deep grief is so very painful. I wiped tears that slowly filled my eyes, and handed both of us Kleenexes. Yet in the middle of the pain, a flash of joy would cross her face, giving me a glimpse into her very beautiful soul. Scripture flowed from her heart like conversation. Then more tears. An hour passed before she gathered herself up and we walked back to the front desk.
Sunday morning came and went. Elizabeth needed me. Preschool ministry survived without me.