That Wonderful $25. Another Evidence Of The Ever-present Spirit Of God.
The following incident is marvelous, as at the time of its occurrence
neither party had ever been known to each other:
In _New Haven, Conn._, lives a little invalid widow, almost helpless,
with no one upon whom to rely for support, and only indebted to friendly
acquaintances for a temporary home. With no money, no acquaintances, she
had nowhere else to turn to but to the Father of all good. She had
often, and often had answers, but this time, though needing
money, still she received none. The answer was long delayed; she was
almost discouraged. "_Was God at last to fail and forget her? No, it
could not be. Let God be true even if I perish, I shall still cling to
Him. I can not give Him up."_
Just at that time a business man in New York, who had been absent on a
long journey for the Summer and had just returned, happened to pick up a
note among many hundred lying on his desk, and noticed that the writer
asked for some trifling favor, saying she was poor, had no means.
Her circumstances were unknown: he knew nothing but her name. He was
eager to _minister to the little ones of the Lord,_ and felt deeply
impressed in prayer that morning, in asking a blessing on his day's
labors, that he might be able to help the need of some of "his children"
who might then be in want. In his business hours the thought came over
him with the depth of emotion, "WHAT CAN I DO? LORD, THY SERVANT IS
READY." Just at that moment he picked up this note of the little
invalid, who asked the trivial favor, saying it would be such a comfort.
_(No money whatever was asked for in this note_.)
Suddenly the thought came to him, "_Perhaps this is my very opportunity.
This may be the Lord's little one in need_." But there was nothing in
the letter to indicate she was a Christian. She solicited no money or
Immediately there came to his mind, amid floods of tears, "_Inasmuch as
ye have done it unto the least of these, my children, ye have done it
unto me_." Instantly he understood it as a message from the Lord, and
the intimation of the Holy Spirit. He immediately sat down and wrote a
check for $25, and enclosed it to her, saying, "_I know not your need;
you have not asked me for help, but I send you something which may be
useful. I trust you are a Christian. I shall be happy to learn if it has
done good, and made you happy. Give me no thanks. The Lord's blessing is
enough for me_."
The letter was sent and forgotten, but a strange presentiment came over
the mind of the writer. "_I am afraid I did not direct that letter
right_." He sent a second postal card, asking if a letter had been
received at her home; if not, to go to her post office and inquire.
Now notice the wonderful singularity of incident. Here is a man sending
money, _never asked for, to an unknown person, about whom he knew
nothing; then misdirecting his letter_, and then remembering and
_sending another message to go and find where the first had gone to. But
notice the marvelous result_. The little invalid received the postal
card, but not the letter. She sent to the post office, and sure enough
there was the first letter with its misdirection. She was _just in time_
to save it from being sent to _another woman of the same name living in
another part of the same city_.
She opened her letter, and with tears of thankfulness perused this
wonderful reply, a marvelous witness to the power of an overruling
Spirit, who had directed everything.
"My heart is full, that God should so answer my simple prayer. I first
asked him for $10, then $15, _and then for_ $25. I asked him for $25
several times, and was astonished at my boldness, but the amount was so
fixed in my mind, _I could not ask for anything else_, and then I humbly
trusted it to Him, and from that time I thought, I will not name any
sum; let it be as He knows my need. And how He has honored my simple
faith and trust in these dark days. _Your letter contained exactly the
$25 I prayed for_. I have not had $1.50 to spend this Summer. I have
suffered for everything. But through it all I have felt such perfect
faith in the Lord, that his hand was leading me, even when I could not
see a step before me; and that He should move your heart to help me
seems so wonderful, so good. I am so glad I can thank you now, but ah,
so much "_over there_" where words will express so much more in the
beautiful atmosphere of heaven. Your letter and kind gift was mailed
_the very same day_ that I was praying in great distress and trial. I
knew not but that I should be without even a home. My verse was Psalms
50: 15. O, how I had to pray that day. So day by day I was comforted,
and now to-day the answer has come."
Here, then, is a portion of the story of a sweet life who trusted God,
not as a God of the past, nor far off, but ever living, ever present,
ever faithful, and believed Him _able, willing_, and that He _would
help_ her in her daily life. She tried her Lord, to prove if his
promises were indeed true, and she clung to them to the very last. No
one knew her need. No one knew what she was praying for. The stranger
did not know anything of her. She had asked money of no one but the
Lord. Hesitant ever, she dared not name any amount of the Lord, but that
ever present Spirit of God guided her heart, made her _fix the amount_,
and then touched the heart of the stranger and fixed the amount also in
his mind, and then, by his own guidance saved the letter from being
lost, and behold! when opened the _prayer of the one and the gift of the
other was the same_.
What a comfort, what a privilege, then, it is for the true-hearted
Christian thus to feel, "_There is one who careth for us_."