She sat beside me wringing her hands. “I just don’t know what to do,” she said.
We had met by chance while I was flying home from a conference in Nashville. Although I longed for a few moments of rest, her anxious demeanor caught my attention.
“Where are you going?” she asked me. I explained about the conference I had attended and my excitement about going home.
“And what about you?” I asked.
She dropped her eyes.
“My father recently died and I’m on my way home,” she explained.
“No one in the family is speaking to each other. I dread seeing everyone again after so many years away. I just don’t know what to do.”
A fresh torrent of tears followed.
She then shared a piece of her story, how she had left home at a young age, and had had no further contact with the other family members. In an attempt to set boundaries she never learned how to reconnect. Thick walls had been erected.
“I wish like anything that I had taken the step while my Dad was still alive.” She sobbed quietly.
I reached over and gave her hand a gentle squeeze. How I longed to take her burden from her, to share something with her that would give her comfort and peace.
“There is One Who loves you deeply and wants to help you through the next few days,” I whispered softly. I watched to see how she would respond to my words. Would she reject them? Would she be insulted? Or somehow would they give her comfort?
“My grandmother used to talk with me about Jesus,” she said. Then she began to share the story of her grandmother and the influence that she had had on her life so long ago.
My attention was now totally absorbed in her account of this dear woman who tenderly taught her granddaughter of the One Who would never leave her.
Together we shared. Back and forth. Smiles mixed with tears. By the time we reached our destination I saw a small light of hope in this woman’s eyes.
My heart rejoiced that I had had the opportunity to touch her life.
Life is like that, isn’t it? Seemingly chance encounters that aren’t accidents at all.
People are hungry to hear that there is Someone Who cares for them. He continues to give life and hope and peace.