I wasn't gonna buy it. I'm a used / Thrift Store shopper...it was New. A bit over my comfort price range...but the denim & guitar were screaming "Buy me for Jackson!". And so, after going back to the rack, walking away, and doing this several times, I decided to just get it. Little did I know how God would use this shirt to guide a conversation that may have Eternal implications....
She said, "This is such a cool shirt", to which I replied, "Yeah. My husband and I are musicians, and this is for our son."
The young store owner replied, "Oh. What do you do?". So I told her about our ministry and travels. She asked more questions; I answered. I asked her about her family - a young wife and mother of 4 boys. God bless her! 😉❤️
I do not, for the life of me, remember how we got there, but our conversation rounded to marriage and spouses. I shared how my husband came from a divorce background, how it affected our marriage because of unresolved issues, and how Marriage Counseling and our hard-yet-rewarding time had worked wonders in the past few years. She asked me more questions, I again answered, and then she slowly looked down at the counter and said in a soft, disheartened voice,
"Yeah...we sure could use some of that......"
As she looked up again, my heart sank. I could see the hurt in her eyes; pain, the unknown, an unfamiliar path. As our conversation continued, she would nod each time I shared a piece of our story. She listened intently. I could tell the wheels were turning in her mind and she could relate to every word I said.
After dialoging for 10-15 minutes at that store counter, I asked if I could pray with her. She folded her hands; I reached out my hand and placed it on the counter. Out of my mouth came a string of sentences and pleadings and groanings to our Holy Father on behalf of this couple, whom I didn't know.
As I ended with 'Amen', I looked up to see her wiping tears from her eyes. She spoke and said, "Your words were exactly what I needed to ask God for. I have spent so many nights alone, in my own bed. I needed this. Thank you."
The store phone rang. Our conversation ended. As I passed through the clothing of that small children's shop, I thought through that moment that had just happened and passed....
• I was not in my local town.
• I had my children with me that morning.
• I happen to meet my parents in another store in that town. My parents offered to bring the 2 older kids home so I could shop if I wished.
• I went downtown for lunch cause I really wanted to relax and enjoy lunch at the coffee shop, which happen to be next door to this store.
• I wasn't gonna go in the store for time's sake, but my mother's words echoed in my mind, "...if you want to do some shopping...", so I did.
My parents were a part of this moment. They were a part of the ministry that had just happened in those few short minutes of that conversation. Their service to me allowed me the time to have a conversation with another fellow wife and mother who needed encouragement. Wow! How God will use each of our ABILITIES in the moment. Praise be to Him for knowing all. Praise be to Him! ❤️✝