So I take some jewelry to be cleaned and repaired at the little stand at the mall. Since I had half an hour to spare before it was ready, I strolled down the mall and decided to stop and get a couple of Chick-Fil-A chicken and biscuits. They quit selling them at 10:30, so I began to hustle a bit to get there under the wire.
I settled down with a cup of coffee and one of the biscuits. Oh, it was so good. As I was finishing up, a black woman with white braids sat at the table in front of me. She had a carrier in her hand and I couldn’t tell what it was. I thought I saw a dog in there, so when I got up to discard my trash, I found myself saying to her, “I figured you had either a grandchild or dog in there, and I hoped it was a dog!” She laughed and said it was her dog and we started to talk. Another woman was with her and was getting their food.
We introduced ourselves. Nell is a widow from out of town. She and her friend had come in to pick up something for her air conditioner. She told me she didn’t drive much and so her friend had brought her. “I’m a widow,” she said. “For the last five years.”
I told her I was widowed myself. She explained that she was lonesome by herself so she got a dog. Her friend came back and joined our conversation. Nell tells me that her friend had lost a child recently.
We ended up exchanging war stories and I asked if they would pray with me. We joined hands and said a few words to the good Lord. Her friend was crying at that point but didn’t want to talk about her son.”
“It’s so hard,” I said. “Only one woman ever said anything to me that acknowledged me as a mother suffering a great loss. I was in traction and a nurse said, “I bet you were a great mother to her.” Every one else said hurtful things like “I don’t think I could survive if I lost a child.” As if my survival proved that I loved less than they did.
Nell wanted my phone number so she entered it in her phone and we parted company. I know I was supposed to strike up that conversation with a perfect stranger. God is good. He is the Good Shepherd