I got the call on a Saturday afternoon that a member of our church, John, had a sudden heart attack while mowing his yard and he had passed away. I dropped everything and went to their home to offer support to his wife, Rose. She understandably was devastated.
Rose and John were both involved in the public schools. John was a much-loved school teacher. Rose had received her doctorate not long before John’s death and was promoted to administrator over all the teachers.
In the weeks and months after this heart-breaking Saturday, Rose and I developed a closer relationship. I, too, had lost my husband to a sudden heart attack two years earlier. In comforting her, I found that I was also being comforted.
Rose told me, “I can hardly wait to get home from school each day so I can get into reading my Bible. I find such comfort there.”
Then she started feeling God was calling her into the ministry. She remembered that when she was a child that she thought she should be a minister. She said, “My parents let me know real quick that I couldn’t be a minister because a woman could not be a minister.” This was the tradition of the church in which she was raised.
As the weeks and months went by, her calling became stronger so she started looking into theological seminaries.
At stage right, entered a gentleman, J.D., who encouraged her to pursue her ambition.
Rose married J.D. and entered seminary while still keeping up with her duties in the school district. J.D. would go to the library and get the books Rose needed for her classes. He marked the pages she should read for her papers.
Rose said, “I could not continue with my duties at school and do my classes if I didn’t have J.D. to help me.”
Since Rose already had her doctorate, it gave her a boost toward obtaining her credentials for the ministry. The day came when she was ordained a minister. She retired from the school district. Not long afterwards, she was called to be the minister of a small church.
Rose has so many gifts that I couldn’t begin to tell you about all of them. However, I will tell you that I found out through our many conversations following John’s death that many years earlier, she had a creative TV show for preschoolers. In discussing the show, I realized that I knew her from way back then because my children watched the show.
Rose is in her 70’s now. She gave up her job at their church as a minister when J.D. got sick. Today she teaches at the theological seminary and preaches one Sunday a month at a local church. She tells me she is having the time of her life.
Rose is an example to me and many others of taking the gifts she has and using them for God’s glory. She is very talented, and therefore, has much to give. I think she must live by the quote found in Luke 12:48 “From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.” (NIV)
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