Monday, June 8, 2009

A Good Name

I want to share a story today which was told to me by the person I am writing about.  In a small community here in North Carolina there lived a family.  There was a mother, father, and six children.  Now most of the children were grown and living on their own.  One child was a newborn infant, one was in high school and yet another child was in a hospital with a major illness.  The father was also in the hospital with a chronic illness.  These were long term illnesses in both cases.  The mother also cared for the infant daughter and she also had her father living with her who she was caring for at the time.  Her father was a retired minister who was more or less an invalid.  This mother worked full time to support her family.  She cooked, cleaned, and did most everything she could to keep the family going.  The teenage son did his part as well.  He would do what needed to be done around the house and yard.  They were doing the best they could.  This woman had a deep faith in God.  She still has one of the most humble spirits that I have ever come across.  One day while the teenage son was at school, her father fell from his bed and she was unable to pick him up.  There was this country store about a half mile away where many of the men in the community would gather round and tell stories and socialize in the morning.  This woman went down there and asked if someone could come and help her father back into his bed.  One of the men, perhaps two came to help her.  After they helped her one turned to her and said, "We all know what you have been going through lately.  I never did believe in God before, but I don't see how you could keep going on if there was no God."

A GOOD name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold.
(Proverbs 22:1)

Small communities are places where everyone knows everyone else.  Most of them know what difficulties are going on in your life.  It was no secret this woman was going through a tough period in her life.  From what I understood, this man who helped her became a Christian later.  The mother's example proved to be what was needed to make him think about God.  Her life became a living testimony to this man.  This is not just someone who reads her Bible and loved her family.  She not only was able to talk the talk, she walked the walk.  I know for fact she is not a big talker.  She is a woman with great faith when it comes to loving God with all of her heart.  When I hear a story such as this it really blesses me.  It also makes me want to examine myself more closely in God's light.  Am I doing all I should be doing?  Do I live in a way that is pleasing to the Lord?  Would someone ever want what I have even in the midst of my difficulties?  Lots of these thoughts run through my head.  I want to be an example pleasing to God.  This woman presented Christ to a person without uttering a word!  Can I say the same?  If you are a Christian, there are people watching you.  They watch how you live and how you conduct yourself in various ways.  You may never even know their name or when they will be watching closely.  You may be the only scripture they ever see!  What an awesome responsibility!  This became your lot when you accepted Christ as Savior.  He wants to use you and he is counting on you to be faithful.  I think when we get to Heaven we will meet the souls who were impacted by our witnessing.  We witness with our actions and our life and with our words.  Our life and actions are far more powerful when it comes to sharing the truth of Christ.  May God help you and I to be a better example of Christ with each passing day.

Father, I thank you for this woman and for the testimony she has.  Her life is merely a reflection of yourself.  Help me to show more of you in my life.  I give thanks you have allowed my path to cross hers and that she was able to share this with me.  I pray also that you would pull the heartstrings of those who will read this and give them a desire to be a living witness for you.  I know that some of them are and for those I give thanks.  Grant them the peace and joy which comes only from you regardless of their present circumstances.  Grant them favor with you, Lord.  Place a hedge about them so they will be protected from all that would come against them.  May your loving kindness shine upon and through all of us.  I ask this in the name of Jesus.  Amen.

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