God is never late



LIFE for Doa Rita a poor Argentine woman was very difficult, and the future appeared dark indeed. Her husband was becoming more and more addicted to drink, and consequently nearly all the money he earned found its way into the tavern at the corner of the street. The burden of feeding and clothing the family of growing children had therefore to be carried by their mother, who spent long hours at the washtub. But the family was numerous, and the money so hardly earned was not sufficient, so that the children were often cold and hungry. But things were to become even worse; for the husband began to insist that some of the money his wife earned be given over to him. Doa Rita became desperate, for the future seemed absolutely black, without one ray of light. To struggle any more was useless. Thus it was that she decided upon a very terrible step: since life was no longer worth living, she would put an end to the suffering both for herself and the children. That surely would be better than living on in increasing misery. She secured some poison and mixed it with the rice she and the unsuspecting children were to take for their midday meal.

But human extremity often proves Gods opportunity. The meal was about to be served when there came a knock at the door, and a neighbour asked: Doa Rita, what are you doing this afternoon? Why do you ask? stammered the woman, thinking that perhaps her dreadful secret had in some way been discovered. Ive come to invite you to a Gospel meeting to be held this afternoon. A Gospel meeting! What kind of a meeting is that? inquired Doa Rita. Oh, its where someone speaks about God and the Lord Jesus Christ and His death on the cross. The meeting only lasts an hour and I am sure you would enjoy it.

Conflicting thoughts chased one another through Doa Ritas mind. It she carried out her plan, she and her family would all be dead by the time of the meeting. But the mention of God made her reflect that perhaps after all she was taking a wrong step. Little guessing what were her thoughts, but seeing her hesitation, the neighbour again insisted, Do say youll come. Ill call for you at 4 oclock and we can go together. Yes, Ill come, she promised; and she meant it.

Directly the neighbour had gone, the poisoned food was thrown away and something else hastily prepared. In the afternoon, Doa Rita went to the meeting and heard things quite new to her, which amazed her and made her anxious to hear more. Before many weeks had passed, she had accepted Christ as Saviour and Friend. Life for her changed completely; she had no longer to bear her heavy load alone. She sent her children to the Sunday School where they learnt that God hears and answers prayer. One little daughter said: Mother, lets ask God to change father. And that prayer was answered. The preacher visited the home and invited the father to attend the services, and although he never accepted the invitation, he did leave off drinking.

Some years have passed since Doa Rita accepted the Saviour, and while her husband has not yet taken the same step, several of her children have. She has also had the joy of seeing a nephew whom she brought to Sunday School accept Christ as Saviour.


From: Anon. True Stories Re-told. London: Evangelical Union of South America, 1965, pages 13,14