God uses others to guide us

Published 5:09 am Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Recently, I had the pleasure of spending the morning with two new friends that I’ll not soon forget. Claudia and Christian wove rich color into the tapestry of my life in two short days. They left me better for having met them.

As soon as Claudia walked into the inn on Friday afternoon with her Romanian accent and light-up-the-room smile, I knew she was special. Her husband, Christian, was a little more reserved at first, but equally impressive with his well-mannered hello.

On Sunday morning, I was busy preparing breakfast for the four guests visiting the inn and trying to get everything right. Chris and Claudia came to the kitchen early and began to share about the fantastic time they had the day before hiking and enjoying the breathtaking Smoky Mountain National Park.

While I worked on final preparations and nursed a cup of strong Guatemalan coffee, Christian and I talked about God’s beautiful creation. We discussed the need that we all have to get away from the busyness of life to slow down and focus on God. Chris said, “When I see the fabulous mountains I can feel God. He has such great love to make such a world for us. It calms my spirit.” Chris and I spoke about our Christian faith and how wonderful it was to meet Christians from different backgrounds and nationalities.

Chris and Claudia now reside in Chicago, but were eager to talk about growing up in Romania. Chris’s church in Romania sent out missionaries to China’s underground church. He was touched by the sacrifices the Chinese Christians were willing to make for their faith.

“Jan, we were wondering where we might find a church to attend this morning,” Chris asked.

“Well, my family and I love our church here. Why don’t you go with us? There is a service at 11:15.”

I finished up in the kitchen, and we took off. My daughter, my grandson, my two new friends and I sat together in the movie theatre where the church meets on Sundays.

We all joined in with the congregation in lifting our voices in praise. Point after point that Chris and I had discussed over coffee that morning was brought out in the pastor’s sermon. What a mighty God we serve. He spoke the same word through a new friend, the beauty of creation, and the pastor.

This morning, long after the other guests had left, Claudia, Chris, and I shared the stories of our lives. We all three had experienced magnificent God moments. We all had stories of huge answered prayers and comfort during difficult times. I can honestly say that the three of us know each other as well as some people do after being acquainted for years.

Several group hugs and a tear or two later, we parted. We may not meet again in this life, but I have been encouraged and challenged by a lovely, young couple that God sent my way.

Jan Penton Miller can be reached at lilsisjan@yahoo.com.