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A Can of Peaches

  Someone rapped on the door frame of the small hut. I quickly wiped my eyes; trying to remove the signs that I had been crying.
 “Come in” I called, trying to steady my voice. A woman in her early sixties came through the door. “Hello, there. My name is Gina. My husband, Robert, and I are the missionaries here. We are the ones that sent for more help. If you don’t mind my asking, why are you crying, honey?” Gina asked, all in one breath.
 “I am just having a hard time adjusting to…everything. I don’t understand…what I mean to say is...” My voice broke again and I started to cry. Gina sat down on the bench next to me and held me why I sobbed. After a few minutes I composed myself. I raised my eyes to her face.
 “I think I know why you’re crying dear. I had the same fears adjusting that you did.” She told me in a quiet voice. I nodded as a hiccup escaped my lips.
  She smiled and grabbed hold of my hand. “Can I tell you a story about me?” I nodded again. “This village was our first assignment as  new missionaries.  We arrived here and Robert was immediately called away to help a family in the next village. You see there was a young boy that was going to kill himself. Thank God Robert was able to talk him out of it, anyway dear, so that left me to set up our hut by myself. I was done around mid-afternoon. So I decided to head down to the tiny hole-in-the-wall market, to pick up some groceries. I got to the market; I was trying to find a can of peaches, but couldn’t. I asked the man that ran the establishment, but he informed me that they didn’t carry any. I had been battling my tears all day long. I started to cry. It wasn’t just that they didn’t have peaches; it was the realization that we would be stuck here for three years.  Now don’t get me wrong. I felt called by God to help my husband. I knew that we were supposed to be here; I was just having a hard time. Anyway dear, there was a woman that came up to me, and without a word she wrapped her arm around my waist. She took me to her hut and made me a cup of hot tea. She sat next to me letting me cry for a long time. Not once did she try to talk me. She knew that I simply needed to cry. Finally I composed myself. She told me that she was the one that had contacted our organization, begging them to send a missionary. I was the answer to her prayers! This meant so much to me. I began to realize why God had placed me here. We talked for hours and as I got up to leave she rifled around in a box until she found what she was looking for. She straightened up and handed me a can of peaches. I was so happy that I started to cry all over again. Anyway, I just want you to know that I understand what you’re going through.”
 “Thank you for not judging me. I know in my heart that God wants me here to help teach and instruct the little children here, but my head is having a hard time letting go to material things. I know that Bradley needs to be here as a physician. This is where God wants us. I appreciate what you’ve done.” Gina smiled until the edges of her eyes crinkled up. “Maybe you can come by for some tea, when I am in a little better shape to entertain.” I asked.
 “I would love that dear. That woman I was telling you about; she was born in England in 1945. She felt that God was calling her to Africa to become a missionary. She was single all her life and lived here until her death a few years ago. Every time that I was feeling homesick we would sit together and have a can of peaches. At least that was what she called the times that we chatted and prayed together.” Gina smiled at the memory. “I treasured her friendship. I am so glad that I’ll see her again someday in heaven though. I just want you to know that I’ll be here for you Olivia. Any time you need to talk.” She squeezed my shoulder.
 I smiled and thanked her. She stood and started toward the door. “Would you like to come by Monday? We could have some tea and share a can of peaches?” tears came to Gina eyes as she nodded and said, “I would love that.”

  I wrote this story to show that even when you’re doing what God has lead you to, that doesn’t mean that your human emotions won’t still rise up. I believe that God raises up people to help encourage us. We lean on our human families for support; leaning on our Christian families is no different. If there is someone that you can encourage, do it. And remember sometimes the loudest words are spoken silently.
 “Therefore encourage one another and build up one another, just as you also are doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11
 “Therefore comfort one another with these words.” 1 Thessalonians 4:18
“Therefore if there be any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affect and compassion, make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on  one purpose.” Philippians 2:1-2

a story||by Farm Girl

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