Late yesterday afternoon I got a text from a friend who was recently widowed asking me to pray for her. She had spent a wonderful afternoon at an apple orchard with her daughter and son-in-law who live in the lower level of her home. Her daughter and son-in-law are newlyweds and being sensitive to their need for together time, after they returned home, she thanked them for inviting her and headed upstairs.
Suddenly the lonliness and despair crashed down upon her. Though her husband had been in a nursing home for nearly four years and had in fact, had not spoken in more than a year, she missed his presence and the tears flowed. That was when she sent me a text asking me to please pray for her which I did.
A short time later, my husband popped his head in the door and informed me that he was finished working on his paper. Did I want to go with him for some ice cream? He didn't have to ask me twice!
I noted the lovely evening as I got into the car. The sun was just setting and it was the end of a very good day. I began to tell my husband about the text I had received a little bit ago and then suddenly stopped as an idea struck me. "Let's ask her if she would like to go with us for some ice cream!"
My friend responded instantly to my text. Yes, she would love to join us. I told her we were heading her way and would be there in just a little bit.
The shadows were beginning to fall as we pulled into the cul-de-sac where she lived. I saw her standing at the edge of her driveway looking small and forlorn. I clutched my husband's arm and quietly said, "I'm glad we invited her to come."
As she opened the door, I saw my friend's face suddenly brighten. "Thank you so much for inviting me to come along!"
Soon pleasant talk turned to laughter as we headed off for our treat. We soon found ourselves in a corner booth, enjoying our ice cream and the company of one another. We laughed and cried as we shared memories of the past but soon our talk turned to the hopes and dreams of the future. Yes, sorrow and grief had come to my friend but she remembered that God had not left her alone and He still had work for her to do. It has long been a dream of my friend to go on a mission trip to Spain and she told me that she had learned just that day that our church is planning one for next year. She spoke of the opportunity she had been given to be a co-table leader at Alpha and we talked about the small group the two of us hope to lead next spring using a curriculum called "Walking With God In The Desert".
My friend teaches at a public school that has a high number of students living in poverty. She talked about her eagerness to get back into the classroom and meet her new students. Why, they needed her! They had much to accomplish in the upcoming year and they needed to get busy.
As we dropped my friend off later that evening, she smiled and softly said, "Thank you for inviting me out for ice cream. You do not know how much I needed this."
Often we get so busy thinking about doing the big things that we neglect doing the small things. Let us not forget, the little things are important.