I remembered her from a couple of weeks earlier. As she walked toward the door, arms laden with the packages of diapers and wipes I'd just given her, I asked her about her church. In their last visit she and her daughter told me they attended a local Hispanic church but I asked again in the hopes of beginning a gospel conversation.
Nearly all of our clients at the pregnancy center claim some sort of church affiliation. It's a rare client indeed that will freely confess her unbelief. Probing more deeply into what the client means both by church attendance and faith in Christ helps expose the true state of both.
So I asked about church and she responded with such emphatic affirmation that I inquired more directly: "So you're a believer in Christ?" She responded with a great smile and a happy stream of Spanish. She gestured toward the ceiling and clutched her heart and concluded in halting, broken English, "Jesus is my life."
Chill bumps erupted on my arms and tears sprang to my eyes. What a beautiful, humble testimony! "Mine too!" I exclaimed and we hugged. She pointed once again to heaven and joyously affirmed, "You...my sister in Christ." Again, the big smile. Again, a hug. Again, a tear. Or maybe two.
We couldn't be more different, she and I. Me comfortably ensconced in my middle class, affluent world with its first world "probz" and she needy, impoverished, a minority in a culture where she cannot even speak the language with any degree of fluency.
As we hugged and shared smiles and tears, I saw the beautiful, precious, glorious reality of John's vision in Revelation. Every tongue, every tribe, every nation, she, and I, all before the throne of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The bond this precious woman of God and I share in the Lord extends far beyond race, language, and socioeconomic barriers. Glory to God, Jesus has broken down the dividing wall! We are sisters, our hearts knit together by the blood of the Son of God who died to set us free. What glory. What grace.
The evident joy and unwavering faith of this sweet client of mine humble me and instruct me. O, for faith to say "Jesus is my life" not only when I have everything but even when I have nothing.
He is all in all, yes and amen.
Author's note: a version of this post first appeared at my personal blog in June, 2013.