You know it amuses me how we “think” we know why God has sent us somewhere, but then it turns out that there was a lot more to God’s plans then we’d thought. So it was at my job with the labeling manufacturing company (Gee, I’m Sorry, But I Need To Quit).
The owner of the company (even though a bear sometimes) always seemed to have a soft heart for me and our special needs son Jeffrey who I’d introduced him to.
He started to open up with me about his faith (staunch Catholic), his health problems, and even family problems. He knew that me and my friend who worked there were Christians, and often we would share with him how we were praying for him. He always seemed so gracious and thankful.
He would talk about his love for God often – but then he would turn around and cuss someone out, saying horrible things sometimes. My friend and I were certain that he didn’t know Jesus personally.
One day I approached him and asked how he was doing. He had been very quiet for a few days, which was totally unlike him. He then pulled me aside and said that he had cancer, and he was really worried about dying.
My heart broke, and after that I would often bring up Bible verses to encourage him, and to hopefully point him to Jesus. Sometimes he would agree wholeheartedly with what I was saying; other times he would just look at me like he had never heard anything like that before.
I kept praying that he would actually ask me what I believed so that I could share the gospel with him – yet it never happened. It almost seemed as though he was afraid to.
One day – in my sixth year of employment – something happened totally out of the blue. My boss came up to me and said we needed to talk.
He pulled me aside, and told me that the owner wanted me to start concentrating on doing just phone work – calling our customers all day to check and see how they were doing. Business had dropped a lot, and he wanted to try and drum up more sales. He thought I’d really be good at it.
The problem: I hated making phone calls – I mean really hated making phone calls! I struggled to hold back my tears.
I tried – I really did – to do a good job and maintain a good attitude, but as one week passed into two, I found myself hating it more and more. Lord, are You telling me it is time to move on?
It got to the point where I was struggling so much that I needed to take short breaks throughout the day to go outside where I walked and usually cried. Why was this happening?
One day Romans 8:28 popped into mind: And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.
As that verse kept repeatedly popping into my mind day-by-day, I finally felt confirmation that it was, indeed, time for me to move on.
There was, however, one thing that was tearing at me: Hardly anyone at work knew that I was a born again Christian! Yes, they knew me and my friend attended church; but since talking to co-workers about personal matters was frowned upon by the owner, that was about the extent of it.
I started earnestly praying: Lord, I must let them know!
The day came when I went in and gave my official two-week notice to my boss. He wasn’t surprised, yet said he was very sorry it had turned out this way.
Then I decided what I would do is to give everyone a personal good-bye card, and include with it a copy of my testimony. And I did, on the last day of my employment.
As I left that last day I was a crying mess. I had come to love the people there so much, and longed for them to know the peace and serenity I had by being a follower of Jesus.
A few months later my co-worker friend told me that the owner’s health had been failing rapidly, and that hospice had been called. I really wanted to go and see him, so I emailed his secretary to find out when he would be in. She said he would be very excited to see me, as he still would talk about me often, and ask about Jeffrey.
On the arranged date, I arrived and the owner gave me a big smile and hug, and then took me over to his desk so we could sit and chat a bit. I finally was able to ask about his health, and he filled me in some; however the more we talked, the more I began to realize that he didn’t remember exactly who I was! It was clear he remembered me as someone familiar, but didn’t remember the specifics.
I left that day with a sorrowful heart, and heard a few months later he had passed away.
Did he come to know the Lord? I have no idea. Yet I have to believe that I did all that I could; and hope and pray that someday I’ll see him in heaven with all my other loved ones.