“Good morning, Anna.” Lydia called out as she carried her basket through the soon to be crowded street.
“And a good morning to you.” Anna replied with a smile as she looked up from arranging her days assortment of clay jars. “It feels like it's going to get hot early today.”
“Sure does, maybe even warmer than yesterday.” Lydia stopped in front of a wooden street stand and set her basket on the edge. Resting for a moment to catch her breath from the long walk she looked up in the sky. “Cloudless,” she thought, it was going to be a beautiful day.
Lydia removed the dust covered cloth from the top of the basket and gazed lovingly at her hard work it had shielded. The fresh linens she had so carefully dyed different shades of purple she began to remove from the basket and lay out for display.
“It won't be long now until the streets are full of shoppers again.” Anna pointed out.
“Yes. And I hope its busy this morning. Maybe we can sell out quickly and go home before the sun gets so hot.”
“Wouldn't that be nice for a change.”
Lydia and Anna were some of the few female merchants in this area of Philippi, but they did well for themselves. The people who shopped here were grateful of the hard work and quality they put into their wares.
It was not long before the street was bustling with activity. Voices carried loudly between the stone buildings. It was a good day for shoppers and merchants alike. Lydia loved being here every day; meeting new people and chatting it up with old friends was so much fun it was not like work at all.
“You have some beautiful things here.” A lady Lydia had never met commented as she held a deep purple fabric between her fingers. “I have been shopping for something new, I could really use a change of pace.”
“Well that shawl would definitely look great on you, but I know of something even better. Something I just recently found myself.”
“And what is that?” The lady asked, curious.
“Well, a few Sabbaths ago, my ladies prayer group and I were sitting by the riverside as we usually do. While we were there, some men also came to that area of the river and one of them, his name was Paul, began to preach to us.”
“Paul told us of the Christ Jesus and how He, being the son of God, came into this world, suffered and died on a cross for our sins. Now, I had heard people talk of this man, Jesus, before, but there was something special in the way this man spoke.”
Lydia talked to this new shopper for hours about Jesus and the things He had done. As the day passed she spoke of her belief and how her and all her household had been baptized for the forgiveness of their sins. Before the day was done, Lydia found herself again at the river's edge, this time accompanied by her new friend. Her new sister in Christ she had just had the joy of baptizing.
“You know, Lydia, when I left home this morning I was shopping for something to change my look, who would have guessed I would find something to change my life.”
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