Letting go has never been easy for me. My son joining the military only compounded my fears. I struggled. I cried. I prayed for him daily, especially in light of the stirrings of war in Iraq. It didn't help knowing he had put his relationship with God on the back burner during high school. Could God reach him without my influence?

Life went on without him at home. My twin daughters were learning to drive, and that brought me to Dunkin Donuts while they went to driver education class. Armed with writing projects and Bible study notes, I hung out with a cup of tea to wait.

"What you think of Jesus?" Nara asked earnestly across the counter in her Brazilian accent. She had noticed I was writing about God and this had led to our meeting each week to talk.

Nara told me about coming to the United States a year ago. The language barrier made it difficult to find a good paying job so she worked at McDonald's during the day and the donut shop at night.

"When I come here, I spend lot of time with a bad crowd," she began. "I smoke. I drink. I take drugs and do other things." Tears formed in her eyes then. "I feel so dirty."

"Oh, Nara. That's why Jesus came. We all do things and feel dirty. We can't be clean on our own. He forgives us and helps us to live His way."

She fiddled with her coffee cup, clearly struggling with her thoughts. She was so far from home, but not too far away for God to be at work in her life.

"Do you have family here, Nara?" I asked.

"No, my mother and my sister still in Brazil. My mother, she know God. I know she pray for me."

"Nara!" I exclaimed. "Do you see how much God loves you? He brought our lives together. . ."

". . .in Dunkin Donuts," She finished.

"Yes. He heard your mom praying for you. He knows where you are and brought someone into your life at the right time to talk to you about Jesus."

At that moment, my own words registered their truth and my heart filled with a new awareness. God loves my son and knows where he is too. He will orchestrate the circumstances and bring someone across his path to talk about God when the time is right for him to listen.

Meeting Nara showed me a mother's prayer is powerful and God's love is far reaching, far enough to reach the heart of a Brazilian girl in a foreign country, and to touch my son on a faraway military base.

August 26, 2010

Jeanne Doyon enjoys encouraging others to love God's Word and to draw nearer to the Lover of their souls. She writes, teaches and is available to speak on a variety of topics. Jeanne is a contributing author to Fighting Fear, Winning the War At Home, and Kisses of Sunshine for Women. Her articles appear in Evangel, Live, Proverbs 31 and Living Magazine. She shares her reflections on her blog at www.streams-edge.blogspot.com. Email Jeanne at jeanne.doyon@gmail.com and find out more about her speaking topics at www.jeannedoyon.blogspot.com