Monday, October 20, 2014


Our family slipped into a pew close to the back and waited for service to start.

A finger tapped me on the shoulder. Kind eyes and a sweet smile greeted me when I turned around.

She introduced herself, and then said, "You don't know me, but I know your story."

The compassion in her voice revealed just how much she knew.

I nodded because nothing else was needed.

"I'm really glad you guys are here this morning."

I said thanks and turned back around.

Music has always moved me unlike anything else, and this day was no different.

Tears slipped down my cheeks as song filled the sanctuary.

Voices rang out in joyful praise all around me, and I could not join in.

Then I felt his small body lean into me, shaking with sobs.

Pulling him into my arms, I sat down, and we wept together.

He could not endure another loss.

And I could not protect him or any of us from it.

There were no words to be said.

It was all over save the grieving, which we could not rush.

I felt the soft squeeze of a stranger's hand on my shoulder.

Her kind eyes were now closed as she whispered prayers on our behalf.

Amidst the pain and the heartache of one chapter ending, God was raising up something new.

I just needed the touch of a stranger to remind me home is wherever the Father leads us.

That was over a year ago.

Yesterday seems to have brought us full circle.

There were more tears, and more prayers, and more hands.

Not for the same reasons, and not just on shoulders this time.

Hands lifted in celebration among tears of joy and thanksgiving.

Hands grasping ours while words of affirmation and love were poured out.

"We've locked arms with your family."

"God has used it all for His glory and our benefit."

"You are home."

Because we've moved from strangers seeking refuge to family serving together.

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