The elderly woman approached me in the dairy section with a look of recognition. She was a fellow-member of the seniors’ Bible study at the church and she did not have me in the context of part-time dairy man. The broad smile appeared, and we went through simple re-introductions. She commented that she had not seen me recently in church with my wife.
I was obscure with my explanation.
Quickly she responded, “I tell you, we all have it too good. We will have to see some bad times before we are ready to see the Lord move again in our midst.”
Looking quite alert in her eighty-third year she began to tell me of revival which she witnessed in Eastern Europe and Russia in the five years following World War Two. She was Romanian born and came under Nazi and then Russian occupation. Thousands of youths had been rounded up by the Russians and were headed to repopulate and redevelop the land ravaged by the onslaught of the Fuhrer. Her command of the Russian language was excellent and she intercepted many of the thoughts and plans of her overseers which had been intended as confidential.
The relocated people were deprived of food and medicine and many were falling seriously gaunt and ill. She came down with jaundice and other complications and heard her captors predicting that she was not likely to live. A seventeen year old girl facing such odds! In her darkest moments she reached out beyond Sunday School experiences to a loving Jesus whom she beseeched for salvation and healing. That night she felt new vigour and hope and a new beginning.
“I tell you sir I saw revival in the streets in these terrible circumstances. People stopping from their work to cry out to God for forgiveness and help. It did not take a church. The Holy Spirit was at work marvelously. All this going on under the noses of the Communists who were committed to silencing the message of Jesus. And here I am now, alive in my eighties, in Canada. It must be that the Lord still has some work for me to do. Still some souls within my sphere who are yet to come in.”
How I was inspired, standing by the half-priced chocolate milk, talking to this remarkable woman of faith. Hearing this living testimony.
Now none of this had ever come out in our year or more together at the Bible study. Sad.
“Foot-washing” of saints and by saints can happen in the most unlikely of places. It MUST be given place to operate.
Doug Blair, Waterloo, ON