One Saturday afternoon, I received a request from one of the bus captains’s from our church’s bus ministry; asking me if I would consider visiting one of the mom’s from his bus route? He said that she was struggling big time with some huge challenges in her life and she needed someone to talk with her. He said the mom had told him she needed God. She felt like she was all alone and felt that the rope she was hanging onto was going to break and her hands were too weak to hang on any longer.
So, the next Monday night I went by Mandy’s house to visit with her. She lived in an older double wide trailer that was surrounded by a chain fence. And, yes, she had two protective watch dogs that notified her that I was entering her yard. (I was so glad they were tied up). I hurried to the door, knocked and was greeted by a lady that wore a half smile and sad looking blue eyes.
We exchanged names and she invited me in to have a seat on her couch. She was kind to offer me a drink and I gladly accepted the offer of a cup of fresh brewed coffee. We shared small talk. I met her 5 children as they slowly came into the room one by one. After meeting them, they quickly returned to their bedrooms playing games and watching TV. The 3 yr. old stayed on mommy’s lap.
I proceeded to tell Mandy that the bus captain had notified me and asked me if I would come by and talk with her because she needed to talk to a lady and wanted to know God.
Mandy told me her life story. She is a mother of 5 and she said that 4 of the 5 are children have special needs. Their ages range from 3 – 16 years old. I observed right a way that she was a loving, caring mom. She fed them healthy meals, they wore clean clothes and she talked so caring and patiently with each one of her children. She not only cared for them physically but cared for them spiritually. She made sure they were up and dressed to catch the church bus every Sunday morning. The 4 older children were faithful bus riders to Sunday school.
Mandy is a stay at home mom. Her husband is the financial provider. He had several different jobs and was not able to keep his jobs for very long. He liked his alcohol and would drink after work and on weekends. Some times he would not come home at night and be gone 1-2 days. When I listened to Mandy’s sad challenges in her life, my heart melted with hers and I told her that I would try to help her in any way I could.
I told her that as a child, growing up in Northern Michigan my sisters and I didn’t ride a church bus to Sunday school, but a church family would come by our house and pack my sisters and I up and pack us in their back seat with their teenage daughters. One Sunday morning the pastor’s wife showed me from the Bible how I could receive Christ as my Savior and as an 8 year old little girl, I received Christ. I asked Mandy if I could share those verses with her that someone had shared with me? She said, “Yes, I am ready.” A few minutes later after sharing, John 3:16;
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
and sharing verses in Romans; Mandy did what Romans 10:9 says:
“That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”
Mandy prayed and received Christ as her Lord and Savior. I told her that now she is a new babe in God’s family. He was now her Father. I went on to tell her that she needed to find special time in her day to read from her Bible. The Bible is God’s word to us. She also needed to talk to God and that is what we call prayer. The book of John is a good place to start in reading the Bible, I told her. It gives information about Christ, His coming, His life, His death, and His resurrection. Mandy asked about church and I shared with her that church is a place where Christians meet to learn more about God and that she needed to get involved in a Bible believing church.
Mandy became faithful to church. Many times she would drive into church and the younger children would ride with her while the older children rode the church bus. Mandy got baptized and joined the church. She became active in our mom’s group that met twice a month on Monday nights. She said those were her special nights that she was able to get out of the house without the children. She connected with several moms and she became such a blessing to so many around her.
Two – three years after Mandy got saved, her family moved out of state, was gone a couple of years and then moved back to our state, but now lives a few hours away from their current home.
She still has her family challenges, but she has a sweeter, bigger smile accented with her sparkling pretty blue eyes, because now she is not alone. She no longer has to hang on to a rope to survive. She has an anchor in Christ who is her Savior, and who walks and talks with her and never leaves her alone.
“…I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”