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A Spinster's Tale, Part 2
The power of forgiveness
Part 1 is here.
2018 was a year of great revelation for me, but to give proper context, I have to go back to 2015, my year of homelessness.
When I was in the homeless housing, I set aside an hour of each day for prayer. For the most part, I asked God to get me out of there – and He did, but that’s another tale.
One day I was praying the usual “get me out of here” prayer when God “spoke” to me. No, it wasn’t an audible voice, but when God speaks to you, you know it’s Him. The “voice” felt like a random thought, however, as I’ve come to discover, it is anything but random.
Here’s what He said:
“Aren't you tired of talking about yourself?
“Why don’t you pray for somebody else?
“Who would you like to see come to Christ?”
And here was the big one:
“Who would you be grieved to your core if they died, and you found out they went to Hell? Pray for that person.”
So, I started thinking back over my life. When it came to me, I gasped. It wasn’t Ronald1.
“No, no, no, Lord not him! Please don’t let Brian go to Hell.”
“You know what to do,” God said.
So, I interceded for the one man in my life that I really loved. At some point, I knew it was enough.
Afterward, I searched for Brian online and found him, but the record showed that there was another adult living with him, and I didn’t want to interfere. But I knew that God had done it.
After that, I put it away for a while.
2018. I had been living in my apartment building since late 2015. As I said, I’d set aside time for prayer when I was homeless, but when I moved into my apartment, I stopped the practice and merely offered short bursts of prayer, and those were not every day.
Then, for a few days at the end of February of that year, I was praying in those short bursts and God spoke to me again. “Pray for a husband.” I ignored it, but it wouldn’t go away. On the third day, a Saturday morning, there it was again. “Pray for a husband.” I looked up at the ceiling and answered.
“What if I don’t want to pray for a husband?”
“Pray for a husband.”
“Okay fine. Please, Lord, give me a husband.” I was not at all enthusiastic in my obedience.
There were no contemporaneous prospects in my life, but I knew of one. Only one.
So, I decided it was time to contact Brian. It was through this, that I found out that he died almost a year before.
Thus began my year of mourning and of revelation. Brian had led an exemplary life. Like me, he was a retired USAF NCO, and he had become a schoolteacher for an organization that helped young adults get their GEDs. The organization loved him so much that they built a memorial for him on the school grounds. I asked God to make a way for me to see it.
And, through friends and family, it happened.
During that year, I had several supernatural dreams of him, but the content of those is not important to this story. It is, however, necessary to provide the story of me finding out about Brian’s death to set a backdrop for another dream I had during that time, which brings us back to Ronald.
In the dream, I was in my regular barbershop and my ex-father-in-law – who had passed away back in the 1990s – was cutting my hair. When he finished, I got up and looked at the scene in front of me. In the corner of the shop was a hospital bed containing Ronald. He was paralyzed. I remember feeling sad for him and for his wife and children and I said so. He smiled and thanked me. I went home, but when I got there, God spoke to me.
“No. You have to go back. You have to do more.”
So, I went back to the barbershop, walked up to Ronald, put my hands on his shoulders, and said: “By His stripes, you were healed.” And he got up. That was the end.
I pondered what this dream might mean for a while. I had been active in forgiveness toward him for many years. Would I get the chance to tell him so and, thereby, unparalyze him from guilt? I didn’t know.
It took about a year to get over my overt grief about Brian. I had stopped crying, at least. And I had returned to my old practice of setting aside time in the morning to talk to God.
I wondered if He still wanted me to pray for a husband and assumed that the answer was “yes,” but something was still bothering me: my divorce. I certainly was not interested in re-marrying Ronald, but if he died, I could get married again free of guilt.
And just to prove that I’m not Miss Goody Two Shoes, I started monitoring Ronald’s wife’s Facebook page to see if/when he would die. If he did, I would take that as my cue. Of course I wasn’t hoping for it. Of course not. Tee hee!
Then something interesting happened: I started caring about what happened to Ronald and Sherelle – his wife – and their family. I didn’t want him to die. And I even got the chance to pray for Sherelle’s healing during her brief bout with cancer.
Man, I can’t even hold a proper grudge. It’s so annoying.
So, I stopped cyber stalking Sherelle and only checked on her occasionally to see if she was okay.
Then, in October of 2020, I went to Sherelle’s page and the bomb dropped, but not the one you think.
She and Ronald were celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary.
Ronald and I got married in 1991. Did that mean what I thought it meant?
I had a friend with skills do some checking and … BLAM!
Ronald had married Sherelle the year before he married me, and they were never divorced.
Our marriage was null and void.
My first utterance upon realizing the truth of the matter was “That motherfucker!”
My second was “Oh my God! I’m free! I’m free! Thank you, Lord. Thank you.”
So, that is how I am 60 years old and have never been married.
Still no prospects and I’m still not that enthusiastic about it, but that could change, and I have faith in that.
Because I look back over the crazy things that have happened in my life and, in spite of those things, I’m still happy and at peace. That itself is a miracle.
And I know that there are more miracles to come.
All names are pseudonyms. Except mine.