Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Hidden Saints

Many of you know the special bond I share with my beloved grandmothers. The strange thing about our relationship is that Grandma Meyer and Grandma Holtz have been gone now for a decade and I love them now more than I did when they were alive. So often I see them in my mind's eye setting the table or bursting forth into song, usually they would sing a favorite hymn while washing dishes.

Well, a few years ago the Lord brought a family to our congregation. A precious young couple with four amazing kids. The father is a chiropractor and I go to him regularly to keep my neck from getting "bent out of shape." :-) We have often swapped stories about our grandmothers. His mother's mother, Gladys Hamilton, is still alive and living in the Branson, Missouri, area. She and her husband, who is now in Heaven, were church planters. They started numerous churches across the United States. What caught my attention was the fact they had planted a full gospel church in Charles City, Iowa, in the early '60s - around the same time my great-grandmother and my grandma were involved with a Spirit-filled work of their own in the Charles City area.

As a child, I was often present during my Grandma Meyer's prayer meeting. She always prayed for souls to come to know Jesus and she asked the Lord to bless the church and help it to grow and thrive. I've often wished she could have lived to see all God has done with the Gospel Lighthouse in Floyd. I know it's because of her prayers.

This week Paul and I took a little break and headed for a much-needed vacation in Branson, Missouri. Because of ministry demands, we had been guilty of burning the candle at both ends and needed time to recharge our depleted batteries.

The tourism is out of this world in Branson. There are shows every day with star studded entertainment. Paul and I both agreed. We weren't interested in any shows. We planned to rest, rest and rest some more. I only had one request I wanted to meet Gladys Hamilton.

Yesterday we took a little road trip to find Gladys' Hamilton's nursing home. We took a few wrong turns, but eventually found it. We arrived around supper time and the nurse pointed Gladys out to us. Gladys eyes oozed with the love of Jesus. The minute we started talking... Gladys shared what Jesus meant to her. I looked at Paul and his eyes were wet with tears, too. Before we left, Gladys took our hands and prayed. She asked the Lord to make the Gospel Lighthouse a soul winning church. (So like my grandmother) She prayed for the Lord's blessing, strength and favor to be upon our family and ministry as we returned to the ministry front back home.

I can't really explain what happened in those moments with Gladys except to say she took us straight to the Father's throne and into His Presence. She is one of the Lord's hidden saints - overlooked by the world, but the Father's eyes are always upon her. Somehow I felt of all the stars whose names were on Branson's marquees, Paul and I were blessed to spend a few minutes with the one whose name was on Heaven's marquee. Shhhhh! I think if you'll listen, you'll hear the clapping of the nail-scarred hands.

I know Jesus will one day say to each of His hidden saints, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant..." I hope to be in that number.


dandelionfleur said...

A beautiful and inspirational tribute!

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

Dixie, what a wonderful thing you and Paul did! What a blessing you are....I know you were overwhelmed with joy, but Gladys must have been too. WTG!

Deb Franke said...

My eyes have completely welled up with tears. This little lady is certainly one of God's angels. May HE bless her as much as she blessed you! Thank you for sharing this with everyone Dixie.

Connie Arnold said...

What a beautiful experience and a sharing of blessings!

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