Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: THANKFUL (11/14/19)
TITLE: Don't Worry, God Will Provide
By Sandra Alsworth
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“Don’t worry. God will provide,” said Father. Money was tight among the Nebraskan farmers in 1910, and the salary her father received from the small church he pastored didn’t always meet their needs.
“In everything give thanks,” she reminded herself. And as her father taught, “Be thankful for what you have. Don’t worry about what you don’t have.”
Right now she was thankful for the wood to heat the coffee and keep the chill off the room. She remembered that bitterly cold day when an old man sent word to her father that his wife was dying and they both wanted to receive Holy Communion. During the three mile walk into the icy north wind, father held his black communion satchel in front of her face to protect her. When they arrived, Father’s hand was frozen to the handle of the satchel. The old man rubbed snow on his hand until it loosened its grip. Then the man helped Father get the sacraments out of the bag so they could have communion. After that, her father arranged for her to live in a foster home as she was too young to stay home alone, and he wanted her to be safe. Yes, being warm was definitely something she was thankful for.
Magdalena noticed the water boiling in the tin kettle, so she added the coffee grounds and let it sit for a few minutes.
While she waited, she thought about how thankful she was that her foster family was a good one and showed her love. Having foster siblings took away her loneliness. She also learned so much about family life from them. It had been just her and her father for as long as she could remember. Her father visited her whenever he could. One day he walked through a terrible lightning storm. Her foster father scolded him as he could have been killed, but he replied, “I promised my daughter I would be here, and I always keep my promises.”
Magdalena poured the weak coffee into the two cups, careful to save the grounds for a third use tomorrow. As she and her father sat at the table drinking the coffee, she thought about how thankful she was to even be alive. Her father told her how her older sister died shortly after birth. When Magdalena was born, she was blue and scrawny, and her mother said, “There goes another little angel.” But her father said, If God wants her to live, she will.” And she did.
She also remembered when she was three years old and saw a “rope” on the ground. When she reached to pick it up, a boy shoved her to the ground. She was furious and complained loudly to her father. He replied sharply, “That was no rope; it was a poisonous snake. Now you go back and kiss that boy and ask for forgiveness. He saved your life.”
Her thoughts were interrupted by a knock on the door. It was Mrs. Luther, the sweet 82-year-old lady from their congregation, and she was carrying a huge coffee cake in her arms. She said, “Good morning, Pastor, I was going to bake me a small coffee cake, and the Lord said, ‘Bake the pastor a big one,’ so I did.”
When she saw the eager, hungry look in Magdalena’s eyes, she broke off a large piece, and as she handed it to her she added, “And every Sunday as long as you are here, I will bring you another one.”
As Mrs. Luther left, her father hugged his daughter and said, “I told you. Don’t worry. God will provide.” Magdalena hugged him back and whispered, “Thank You, God.”
These are from the recollections of my grandmother, Magdalena, written down by my mom many years ago. I turned them into a story.
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