The Widow's Prayer
by Lyn Ruth
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The young poor widow was rushing home one night. A heavy storm was brewing and already the streets were flooded. But she continued to walk as fast as she could. She was oblivious of the heavy downpour. Her thoughts were focused on her two young children. They were all by themselves in their shanty. They must be really famished.
She held on tightly to the paper bag which contained some milk, bread and a piece of sausage. Mr. Lopez paid her today for cleaning his house. He also gave her extra money for doing the laundry and for preparing supper. She felt through her pocket to make sure that her purse was still there. It contained two dollars and a few cents. The amount could buy more food for the next day.
Suddenly, a man bumped her. She lost her balance. To her surprise, the man kicked her hard on the stomach, grabbed her paper bag, took her purse, and ran away. The widow was in shock. She managed to get up but the pain was almost unbearable. It was too late to ask for help. The man had gone in a flash. The prospect of facing her two hungry children was difficult. She could not think of another way of earning some money. The other families who she kept house for had told her to come back for work next week. Next week. That was still five days away. Slowly, as she walked home, she prayed: "Oh, God, I praise You for Your love.Thank you for keeping me safe."
As the widow entered the little hut, she was relieved to find her children sleeping. "At least the young ones will not ask for food," she thought, "not yet anyway." She went to the kitchen and looked at the bread basket. There were only crumbs. Again, she prayed: "Oh, God, I praise You for Your love.Thank you for the food I am about to prepare"
There was nothing to cook, absolutely nothing to eat. She opened the lid of a kettle.There was still some drinking water inside. There was also some salt in another jar. She thought of boiling the water and dashing it with some salt so it would have a little taste. It would be like soup. But there was no wood to burn that she could use for cooking. Still she prayed: "Oh, God, I praise You for Your love. Thank you for the fire you will send so that I can cook my children's soup"
She took some old sheets of paper, rolled them, lighted them with a match, and used them to heat the kettle till the water boiled. The widow was very careful. The fire must not go out. There was no more paper. That was also the last match. But she prayed: "Oh, God, I praise You for Your love. Thank you for providing this soup for my children"
And then the children woke up. At once, the youngest asked for food. The widow was now in tears. She took the children in her arms and told them they were having a special soup. The children smiled excitedly. As she served them the boiled salted water, her kids started to cry. The widow closed her eyes and prayed: "Oh, God, I praise You for Your love.Thank you for easing the hunger of my children."
The next day was beautiful and sunny. The storm had finally stopped. The widow decided to visit some of the big houses in a nearby neighborhood. "Surely one of those houses need someone to do the cleaning. I'll give it a try," she said to herself. She knelt down for her morning prayer: "Oh, God, I praise You for Your love.Thank you for the provisions you will supply today"
The widow was about to wake up her eldest child, to tell her to keep an eye on the younger one while she went out to look for money, when a knock came from the door. She peeped through the window. It was a woman, maybe in her 40s, dressed in rags and she looked forlorn. The widow imagined she must be a beggar. She whispered her prayer: "Oh, God, I praise You for Your love.Thank you for using me to help this woman who seems to be in distress."
She opened the door. The woman looked at her nervously as she slowly spoke. "Mrs.", she tried to avoid looking at the widow's eyes, "a man robbed you last night."
The widow was confused: "Yes... but how do you know about that".
The woman quietly sobbed: "That man is my husband, Mrs. I...I'm sorry for what he did. He is sorry too."
The widow was taken aback as the woman continued: "Here... I am returning everything that he took from you. My husband surrendered to the police officer this morning. He is now in prison. He is really remorseful and is ready to face the consequences of his sins. I want to thank you for what you did to him. Because of you, I believe he is a changed man"
The widow was still astonished:"What... what did I do to him?"
The woman smiled softly: "There's a piece of paper in your purse. When he took the cash out of your wallet, it fell on the floor. He picked it up and after he read it, he started to weep in a way that I've never seen before. Then he told me that I must return these to you and that he was going to surrender to the police."
When the woman left, the widow looked into her purse, pulled out the piece of paper and read it. It was something she copied yesterday from Mr. Lopez's Bible. She liked the verses and had wanted to share them to her children: "Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world." (James 1:27)
"He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need." (Ephesians 4:28)
The widow raised her hands to the Lord and prayed: "Oh, God, I praise You for Your love. It was You who saved that man. Thank you for bringing the lost back home. In Jesus' Name, Amen."
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Very touching and this is how we all should come, BELIEVING! Really enjoyed this.
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Very nice! I was so tired and ill after a challenging day at work and was wondering where is my Daddy (Lord) and I missed him today. And, there your story brought me close to my loving Father who loves me so so much! God bless! Pls do keep writing short stories like this for the glory of our Father. I enjoyed it very much.
Oh, what a lovely story! This felt so real. And what a wonderful example she is to us to pray expecting!