Listening to God

A few weeks ago my family went on a vacation overseas. One of the places we chose to visit was Kalenborg, Denmark. We chose this destination because it is where our former exchange student, Marie is living with her husband and 2 children.

First, our story with Marie. It was spring of 1995, My husband and I were living in Fargo, ND. Jim was a pastor at a Lutheran Church and I was a chaplain and religion teacher at Oak Grove Lutheran High School, a private Lutheran High School. Our children were 2 and 4 years old. Marie was one of my students. She was an exchange student from Denmark living with a family in the area. Marie lived with a host family that made her go to church on Wednesday nights for 3 hours and Sunday’s for 6 hours. There were other issues with the family. To make a very long story short, my husband Jim and I told Marie she could live with us.

Her first Sunday at our home, I told Marie that I didn’t want her to go to church. She looked at me like I was crazy! I told her worship had been forced on her, I didn’t want her to feel forced to worship (especially since Jim and I are both pastors). I actually don’t know why I told her this, not my usual tactic, but something inside me (the Holy Spirit) told me to say it to her. When we came home that day from worship, Marie opened up. She opened up about her faith, her questions about God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. This conversation continued while Marie lived with us, and she eventually chose to worship with our family.

Nineteen years later, our family is visiting Marie in her home in Denmark. Her children are 2 and 4. Go figure! One afternoon while we were talking, I felt I needed to share with her a story that I had shared about God’s love with our Prince of Peace youth. I never planned to tell her this story, it just came out, (the Holy Spirit again!) it opened up the most wonderful faith discussion. I thank God for placing words and stories in my heart to share. The good news is that God is doing the very same thing in your life. The Holy Spirit is active in your heart, encouraging you to share stories that let others know the love of Christ.

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