Today we met Chris and his fiance Victoria at church. It was a God appointed meeting, that's all I can say. Well, I can say wow and whoa as well. It's one of those times that could only have been planned and orchestrated by a Papa in heaven who is crazy-in-love with His kids.
Today, Chester and I woke up and went to church. We usually don't go on Sunday morning, we usually go on Saturday night. And Chester doesn't always go, just sometimes. Last night, Saturday, well....we just didn't have the get up and go, to get up and go. This morning, when I woke up --- I could hardly wait to get in the car and go... with Chester.
At the same time, in another city, Chris and Victoria decided to visit Christ Community Church in Harrisburg for the first time. Kind of spur of the moment. Neither Chris nor Victoria live in Harrisburg, we don't either for that matter,but one day while driving by the church, & seeing the sign, Victoria thought I'd like to visit there one day. This was the day.
Chris and Victoria sat a few rows behind Chester and I. Chris in his wheel chair in the aisle, Victoria on the end of the row snuggled in close, both holding hands. Chester noticed Chris, and definitely wanted to sit by him and not me. I have learned to listen to Chester's promptings, so, after making sure Chris was OK with this arrangement, we readjusted so Chester could be near his new friend. After worship, Chester wanted to lay at/on Chris's feet, and so I relocated my stuff to make this happen. This is NOT typical Chester behavior, meaning, he usually likes to rest at my feet. Not today.
I noticed Victoria had tears in her eyes most of the morning. So did Chris. When we had a moment to talk, I said, "You have no idea what a GOD MOMENT this is." Victoria, nodded her head. More tears.
After church, I learned their story. This cute couple is engaged to be married. Victoria has been encouraging Chris to look into getting a service dog. Chris has been reluctant, hesitant. His cute red-headed fiance has sent him some web-links for service dogs. They have discussed it numerous times. Chris explained that she is really good at dropping hints, but Victoria is gentle and doesn't push.
Last night, they talked about the dog subject again, and Victoria realized that if Chris was to have a dog it would rather take a miracle, like he would really need a sign from God or something like that. Sooo, I love this part -- they go to a church that neither of them has ever been to before, and here is cute Chester in his yellow therapy dog vest. Victoria gets all teary. Chris rolls his eyes and thinks this must be a set up...but how could it be... they don't known anyone here and they've never set foot in this place before. Actually, it was a set-up. Papa is so darn sneaky, I love it!
Chris later told me that he had to see a dog, experience a service dog, to get it. Chester obviously KNEW it was his job to help Chris get it. And so, throughout the entire service, Chester was with Chris, attentive, calming, loving. Let me assure you, I could in no way make Chester do this --- it's just the way Papa made him, sensitive to the Spirit, sensitive to people.
Chris and Victoria invited Chester and me to lunch. We gladly accepted. Chester walked into the restaurant at Chris's side. People talked to Chris and to Chester. This was new, and welcomed by Chris ~~ people don't always engage in conversation with a person in a wheel chair, often looking past them. Not so with Chester. He's totally an ice-breaker! Throughout our meal, Chester lay quietly under the table, at times with his head resting on Chris's feet, sometimes Victoria's feet. During lunch, as the three of us got to know one another, I had the opportunity to share how a service dog, when it's the correct match, could help Chris with countless skills, and help him gain more independence~~ not to mention be his faithful, loving, calming, companion.
Chester was quite convincing today --- just poured on the love. Chris is going to make the contact to get going with a service dog. And each one of us, well, our faith grew by leaps and bounds today. We do have a Papa who loves us, we really do. (and He can be pretty darn sneaky)