I can’t remember what color the sofa was, but I can clearly recall the change that was made in my life because I sat there with Linda that day.
I came to know Linda about 33 years or so ago at a meeting she and I both attended. We were both waitresses at the time. I suppose the common connection at the time of our introduction had something to do with restaurants. I had not been back in North Carolina very long and was very intent on saving money for a trip back to Florida.
My eyes could only see from one perspective at that point in my life. I had focused through the same lens my whole life. At eighteen my world had been turned upside down by waking up from the reality of my decision to have an abortion. But I had no idea what to do with the condition of my heart. Seeing from the same point of view after pulling away from everyone was a challenge. Why wouldn’t my life work the same anymore? My life had been on a downward spiral before the abortion, but now I couldn’t seem to find my ground. Nothing worked anymore. The satisfaction that was familiar to me in the things I previously sought after was no longer my reward. Where was I to turn now?
The details are not clear all these years later, but I remember the invitation was extended for me to attend a bible study at Linda’s house. Truth be told – when I watched my peers, Leigh and Debbie’s lives, and saw them say yes to the bible study, I wanted to be like them. So I followed. What happened next though was quite the surprise to me.
For the first time in my life – the Bible was opened and I saw and heard things I’d never known. I can’t tell you what book of the bible we studied. What I can tell you is my eyes were opened for the first time to the teaching of Jesus Christ crucified, buried and resurrected. I saw my life in view of the cross Christ was crucified upon. My life choices were part of what nailed Him to the cross. And He chose it. For me. When the bible study ended I was hungry for more. Much more.
As Linda and I sat on her living room sofa, I made a decision that would forever change every fiber of my being. With her explanation of Christ crucified willingly for my sins, I understood the weight of all of my previous decisions. I experienced freedom from the weight like no freedom I had experienced in my lifetime. I surrendered my life to Christ at that moment and have been learning under His tutelage ever since.
My friendship with Linda is a gift from the Lord. The impact she has had upon my life is beyond earthly measure. The life lessons we have shared over the years walking alongside one another has impacted my singleness, my decisions preparing for marriage, my marriage and parenting relationships…just to name a few. Whether I was riding with her to a ballgame, running errands with her, walking with her or sharing a family cookout, I was always learning at her side by how she chose to respond (and still does) to God and to others. No matter what she faced or what I faced, she always directed me back to the Lord. The real starting place of our relationship.
These many years later I have a worn leather sofa in my home. My hearts passion is to pour into young women with the same hope that was poured into me so long ago. The hope I found in Christ. It’s not uncommon to hear one of my friends say “I need some time on the leather”. You see, it’s really not about me being good at this. It is about offering Christ as the only real answer.
As I share with others the need to invest in the generations that come after us, some think they could never do it…they wouldn’t know where to start…how to go about it…what to say.
Maybe Linda didn’t know either, I have never asked.
What I do know is that she opened her home, opened her life, and opened her bible.
Because she did – My life is forever changed.
I am willing to bet YOU have a sofa.
Have you considered the impact you might have if you opened your home, your life, your bible?