Nando (4 Jan 2011)
"Things Happen for a Reason"

This Christmas story was sent to me by my brother, I hope it inspires you as it did me.

Things Happen for a Reason
Beautiful story..... makes you understand that things happen for a reason 
he brand new pastor and his wife, newly assigned to their  first ministry,  
 to reopen a church in suburban Brooklyn, arrived in early October  
 excited about their opportunities. When they saw their church, it was very run down and needed  much work. They set a goal to have everything done  
 in time to have their first service on Christmas Eve.  
They worked hard, repairing pews, plastering walls,   painting, etc, and  
 on December 18 were ahead of schedule and just about finished.  
On December 19 a terrible tempest - a driving rainstorm hit the  
 area and lasted for two days. 
On the 21st, the pastor went over to the church.   His heart sank when  
 he saw that the roof had  leaked, causing a large area of plaster about 
20 feet by 8 feet to fall off the front wall of the
 sanctuary just  
 behind the pulpit, beginning about head high. 
he pastor cleaned up the mess on the floor,  and not knowing what  
 else to do but postpone  the Christmas Eve service, headed home.
On the way he noticed that a local business was
   having a flea market  
 type sale for charity, so he  stopped in. One of the items was a beautiful,
handmade, ivory colored, crocheted tablecloth
  with exquisite work,  
 fine colors and a Cross   embroidered right in the center. It was just
the right size to cover the hole in the front
  wall. He bought it and  
 headed back to the church.
By this time it had started to snow. An older woman running  
 from the opposite direction was  trying to catch the bus.    She missed it.  
 The pastor   invited her to wait in the warm church for the next  
 bus 45 minutes later. 

She sat in a pew and paid no attention to the pastor while he got a ladder, 
 hangers, etc., to put up the tablecloth as a wall tapestry. The pastor could hardly believe how beautiful it looked and it covered up the entire problem area. 
 Then he noticed the woman walking down the center  aisle. Her face was
like a sheet. "Pastor,"  she asked, "where did you get that tablecloth?" 
The pastor explained. The woman asked him to check
  the lower right
corner to see if the initials, EBG were crocheted into  it there. They were.     
 These were the initials of the woman, and she had  made this tablecloth
35 years before, in Austria
he woman could hardly believe it as the pastor told how he had just  
 gotten "The Tablecloth". The woman explained that before the war she and 
her husband were well-to-do people in Austria .. 

When the Nazis came, she was forced to leave. Her husband was going to 
 follow her the next week..     He was captured, sent to prison and  
 never saw her husband or her home again. 
he pastor wanted to give her the tablecloth;  but she made the  
 pastor keep it for the church.   The pastor insisted on driving her home. That 
was the least he could do. She lived on the other  side of Staten Island and was  
 only in Brooklyn for the day for a housecleaning job.
hat a wonderful service they had on Christmas   Eve. The church was almost full. The music and the spirit were great. At the end of the service, the  pastor and his wife greeted everyone at the door  and many said that they would return. 

One older man, whom the pastor recognized
  from the neighborhood continued to sit in one of the  pews and stare, and the pastor wondered why he  wasn't leaving. 
he man asked him where he got the tablecloth on the front wall because it was identical to one that his wife had made years ago when they lived in Austria before the war and how could there be two tablecloths so much alike? 
e told the pastor how the Nazis came, how he forced his wife to flee for her safety and he was supposed to follow her, but he was arrested and  put in a prison.  
 He never saw his wife or his home  again all the 35 years between.
he pastor asked him if he would allow him to  take him for a little ride. They drove to Staten Island and to the same house where the pastor   had taken the  
 woman three days earlier.
e helped the man climb the three flights of  stairs to the woman's apartment, knocked on  the door and he saw the greatest Christmas  reunion he could ever imagine.
rue Story - submitted by Pastor Rob Reid who says God does work in mysterious ways.   I asked the Lord to bless you as I prayed for  you today, to guide you and protect you as you go  along your way. His love is always with you. His  promises  

 are true, and when we give Him all our cares we know He will see us through.
S o when the road you're traveling seems difficult at best, just remember I'm here praying and God will do the rest.  Pass this on to those you want God to bless. 
When there is nothing left but God, that is when  you find out that God is all you need.  Take 60  seconds and give this a shot! All you do is simply  say the following small prayer for the person who sent this to you.
ather, God, bless all my friends and family in what
ever it is that You know they may be needing this 
day! May their lives be full of Your peace, 
prosperity and power as they seek to have a
closer relationship with You. Amen.