Thursday, July 26, 2018

The Mystery Woman at the Minneapolis Bus Depot

“How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!” Rom. 10:15

It’s important to remember those who first brought the Good News to us.  
Yesterday I wrote about how God used  my family to plant the Gospel seed in me.   But the process of coming to Christ is  often a team effort.  One plants and another waters, but only God can make it grow. 
My grandparents sowed the seed when I was a child,  but God used a stranger to water it when I was 19. 
It was 1971 and I had adopted the counterculture's  version of Eastern Religion.  A friend and I had just driven across the trans- Canada highway from Vancouver to Ontario and found ourselves stranded in Minnesota.   The old 1962 Rambler gave up the ghost along the way so we grabbed our backpacks and my guitar  and hitched a ride to the Minneapolis Bus Depot. 
As we were sitting there waiting for the bus, a silver haired woman sat down and began to chat.  When she told us she was a missionary in India  my ears perked up because I had a copy of the Bhagavad Gita and hoped she could further enlighten me.   Instead, she burst my bubble and spoke of how the people she worked with were in bondage because of their beliefs and  that they worshipped black dogs. 
She talked about how spiritual freedom can only be found in Jesus Christ and then  gave us a Gospel tract.    She asked us to read it carefully and as we drove into the night on the Greyhound bus I turned on the overhead light and read the tract.   
Over the next year the Lord began to deeply convict me of my sin and I began reading  the Bible.  I was convinced that Christ died to save sinners and that I would have to answer to Him one day.  I believed that I would eternally perish if I did not repent and follow Him before that happened.   
I had every intention of doing that later. 
But for God’s mercy, later would never have come.      I was involved in a serious roll-over car accident and broke my neck.   That night in the hospital the Lord reached out and saved me.   This was no “fox hole” religion but a genuine conversion experience that changed me forever.   According to the orthopedic surgeon my survival was “a miracle”. 
THE MYSTERY WOMAN REVEALED
Fifteen years later I was married with children and my husband had graduated from Bible college.  We were living in Sacramento and one evening at church the  pastor preached on evangelism.   When he asked for volunteers to tell about the person who witnessed to them,  I  told of the mystery woman who had shared the Gospel with me in the Minneapolis Bus Depot.   
Afterwards a man approached me and said he thought it was possible this woman could be a retired missionary he knew who was living in northern California.     I contacted Carol by phone and asked if she had been in the Minneapolis  Bus Depot in 1971.  “Yes!” Had she shared the Gospel with two young hippie women?   “Yes, and one of them had a guitar”.    I thanked her profusely and as I shared all that the Lord had done for me we both cried tears of joy.  
As if this story isn’t crazy enough,   I was scheduled to share my testimony the following month at a regional women’s retreat and Carol had already planned to attend!    When the time came for me to speak I looked out over the sea of faces at the women’s retreat wondering which one was her.    Afterwards I inquired around to find her and my heart sank in disbelief when I learned that she could not make it because she had recently been diagnosed with a brain tumor.   
I phoned her when I returned home and we both marveled at the Lord’s mercy in bringing us together in the end.    The Lord never ceases to amaze me and I can’t wait to meet Carol in heaven!

7 comments:

  1. I am so glad you were able to connect with Carol on this side of glory. The way God weaves our steps to bring people to Himself is amazing!

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  2. What an amazing story! All Christians should have many times they can see God working in their lives! If you think about it, much of the Bible is written so we can watch as God worked in people's lives to bring them to Him. Check out www.biblicalpath.com. This was written with this perspective in mind - God working in people's lives to bring them to know Jesus and what He did for us.

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  3. Lovely story! I was blessed to be brought up in a Christian home, but my parents were converted at 19 when an older woman stopped by to talk about Jesus with them. I'm so thankful for her! They later became missionaries and are still serving the Lord. I and my 2 siblings are also dedicated to Christ. The seed she planted is growing into a beautiful tree.

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    1. That’s beautiful Johanna. Thank you for sharing.

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