Recently, I met a saint who just goes where God leads her. What is so beautiful about her is that God doesn’t lead her to the church building but places that reminds her that she is the church.
I was visiting my mom at a nursing home as I often do. I was sitting in the vestibule while the staff was completing ministrations on my mother. I saw this woman enter the building and Holy Spirit said to me, “Make sure you speak to her.” When she came to where my sister and I were sitting, she spoke. We both spoke, and I asked her, “How are you doing?” She replied, “I am not doing that well. It is becoming too much, but I know that Jesus will get me through. My husband is here with Alzheimer’s and my son is gravely ill. I want to cry. I am 85.”
I immediately stood up and gave her a hug. I said to her, “It is okay to cry.” These words were what she needed. I reminded her that God gave us tears to let go and have some release. She thanked me for hugging her. I also reminded her that even though I know she is relying on God, God made humans to touch other humans and that as human beings we need to have human touch. We talked about how our God is all about relationships. That is when she told my sister and me about her call. She wasn’t call to “church people,” but to those outside the church building. I thanked her for her words of wisdom because I knew that was my call as well. We both smiled. I asked her what time was she having service and she told me at 11. I told her I would be there.
At 10:55, I saw her helping two gentlemen in wheelchairs go down to the cafeteria. I got up to help her and followed her instructions. We waited about 5 minutes for her to come back. She said her husband would not be coming because he was not feeling well enough. When service started, “What a Fellowship, What a Joy Divine.” We sang songs and then she taught us about Communion. She didn’t talk about theories on communion, but used the Word of God. The title of her sermon was “The Paradox of Communion.” Other people came in. She allowed Holy Spirit to use her so mightily that we all sat there transfixed (The traditional ministers who were there just sat there also with smiles on their faces.) Several of the workers in the kitchen kept coming in and out to get some of this word. Throughout her sermon she kept giving God the glory. She preached in her own style. She did something you will rarely see a preacher do while preaching, she allowed those listening to stop her, ask a question or just make a comment. This is real confidence in allowing Holy Spirit to use you. Afterwards, she asked us if anyone had something to say. This is what the early church must have looked like, people who know they are broken having the word expounded to them in a conversational manner.
After service, she took me to meet her husband. He sang for us. He has Alzheimer’s, but it does not always have him. He talked to us about God and how God had used both of us to help each other. I saw the love they have for each other. But, while I listened to him, his advice centered on the conversation the she and I had when we first met. In closing, I’d like to say that our God is not a God of coincidences.
In your prayer time, I ask that you pray for Saint Genardry Haynes, Hector Haynes (her husband) and Alfred Barnes (her son).