The sound of gentle breathing reached my ears as I slowly realized I was awake. The light, filtering through the blinds and reflecting off the walls, confirmed that it was morning once again. Another day, and, oh yeah – don’t forget the roses! As I turned in the bed my eyes were once again filled with what I knew would be the most beautiful sight I would see that day. Her eyelids fluttered slightly, then opened with greater determination, and her face broke into an amused grin as she realized that I had been watching her as she slept.
“So, what – are you enjoying the view?” she quipped.
“Oh yeah – every bit of it!” I returned, as she allowed me to enfold her in my embrace. “Happy anniversary My Love!”
“A whole year…” she sighed in childlike wonder.
“… Where has all the time gone?” I completed her thought as I kissed her lightly on the neck. I reached for her hand and felt a gentle squeeze in return as I drifted into a state of reminiscing over the goodness of God during the previous two and one-half years…
I heard the sound of jubilant praise as I approached the open door of the church. I knew, when I had left my apartment, that I would likely be a few minutes late. As the congregation continued with another verse of a rousing song of praise, I slipped into a pew towards the back of the church that was already occupied by a few worshippers. I nodded ‘good-morning’ to the young lady next to me, and she flashed me one of her electrifying smiles in return as we both turned our attention to the Object of our Worship. The Morning Service was a good one, ‘and over all too soon’ I thought, as I headed back to the loneliness of my one-bedroom apartment.
I greeted the picture on the dresser as I entered the room, and proceeded to the fridge to prepare the usual Sunday Dinner – pre-cooked chicken potpie, heated in the microwave oven. “I still miss You, Little-One”, my spirit muttered as I remembered my late wife, Anna, who had gone to receive her eternal reward nine months previously, after losing a prolonged bout with cancer. I had accepted a job halfway across Canada in an effort to begin another life, but I never was one for making a lot of new friends on my own. “If only there was someone to share my thoughts with – to go with for an occasional coffee…Oh well,” my mind resigned itself to my current state of affairs.
It was Sunday again, and I was walking the short distance to church – again. As I approached the row of tenement houses the young lady was just leaving for church. I fell into step beside her, and we chatted about the weather, and the prospect of an early winter, until we reached the church a block further. I held the door open for her, she shed her coat in the foyer, and, because of our simultaneous arrival, we once again found adjacent seats in the same pew. A few heads turned to acknowledge our arrival, and there were warm smiles on many of the faces. It was a joy to watch her as she opened herself in praise before God.
The service was over, and I lingered to chat with a few brothers before heading home for another solitary Sunday dinner featuring re-heated shepherd’s pie. Oh well – nothing like a little variety to spice up one’s lonely existence. Reaching the sidewalk I noticed her walking home – about ten paces in front of me. I quickened my step as she reached the intersection, and when we had crossed the street, I was about three paces behind her.
“Hey – where are you going in such a hurry?!” I bantered as she paused, giving me a chance to catch up. We chatted amiably once more, commenting on the worship service, and the main points of the sermon, until we were once again standing at the entrance to the tenement block. Out of the loneliness that haunted me, I heard myself ask – “Would you be free to join me for coffee on Friday night.”
“Sure”, she agreed, “what time?”
“Oh, let’s say seven o’clock, - I’ll pick you up about ‘a quarter- to’?
“That’s fine”, she replied, “see you then”.
Arriving at my apartment, I hung up my coat, walked over to the calendar and marked ‘Roseann – coffee – 7:00’ on the 'Friday' square, just so that I wouldn’t forget. Throughout the week, whenever my eyes would light upon my ‘reminder’, my heart would flutter in anticipation. “What if …” my spirit mused. “Oh don’t be silly!”, I chided myself, “she’s got to be ten, - even fifteen years younger than you! It’s only a friendly chat over a cup of coffee – and maybe a slice of pie!”
The evening had been a time of joyful communion. We had shared with each other the particulars of our past. It was truly refreshing to once again be able to communicate openly with another adult of the opposite sex. Before we had parted, we had set another ‘date’ for the following Saturday. And so began a relationship that grows sweeter with each passing day. Six months later, we exchanged wedding vows, and embarked on a pathway of mutual love and respect. Truly, God has turned my mourning into dancing again, and continues to show His goodness to us as we are becoming one in Him.