I had a parent’s evening last night. One essential ingredient missing – the parents! Despite having arranged appointments, no one came! I had spent a considerable time gathering together the information I thought they were looking for regarding next year’s courses – but in the end, there was no one to pass the information on to!
However, it was not all a waste of time. The Gaelic teacher had a steady stream of parents to talk to, and one lady after she had been talking to her, came over to talk to me. The conversation began with a very hesitant, “Mel?” (Very few people in school call me Mel. It is usually the whole name – Melanie.)
The conversation continued with my reply…”Avril?” I am not sure if it was a lucky stab in the dark, or just God being good to me at that moment in time. There are very few people I know with red frizzy hair! Avril and I had known each other fifteen or sixteen years ago. When I was working full time in church evangelism, Avril had stopped one time in town to watch a street drama organised by our church. We had coffee together and talked about faith. She was a member of a church down by the river and involved in Sunday School teaching, but confided in me that she wasn’t sure what she really believed.
That first meeting led to many others, mostly round at her house, helping out with household tasks as we chatted. I think I was brash enough in those days to think that my church was the only church that had got it right and I think I badgered her, trying to get her to leave the church she was going to and come to mine. With our church being on the charismatic fringe, she wasn’t sure. We lost touch – mostly because I got a job, got married and suddenly things change. I am challenged about how easily I seem to let some friendships go.
What really encouraged me last night was that she had remembered me – I could not have been that bad! And almost as soon as she had introduced herself, she mad a point of telling me that she had really found her faith, and was confident in God. She was still with the same church, teaching the youth group! I went home thinking how encouraging it was to have someone see me, remember me, and be determined to tell me that they are moving on in their faith. I imparted something into their lives and they remembered!