Sometimes when you are a pastor, you get called on to do really, really tough things. There was a time, over ten years ago that a grandmother in our church got a court order that gave her custody of her two grand kids. Her daughter and the daughter's boyfriend were hooked on drugs and the grandmother took action.
This was a tough decision for the grandmother. She felt she had no choice.
So she asked Victor (and me) to help her take the kids. Police officers would be with us in case things got out of hand.
Backing up a bit... When Victor was a young man and stopped being a full time rock 'n roller, he worked for a time as a 'bug-man'. He had a regular route and every few months would go to this grandmothers' house and treat it for bugs. At the time the daughter was a young girl and Victor talk to her a bit and made friends with both of them. The daughter always liked Victor.
Now back to the story... 10 years later:
The date and time were set when we were to go and get the kids. It would be a 'surprise' kind of thing.
Victor and I drove over to the apartments to meet the grandmother and the police. On the way there, we started praying. I asked the Lord to "Please let the parents be asleep." I kept thinking of the story in Acts 16 when Paul and Silas were in prison and the guards fell asleep and the jail doors opened up etc.
*Queue up the racing-heart sound*
Grandmother (with the police men wearing bullet proof vests) goes to the door and knocks. The two young children answer the door. Grandmother says "Hi sweeties, open the door I'm here to pick you up." The kids were happy to see her. She takes them and the police go inside.
"Mom! Don't take my kids!!" The daughter actually was asleep and woke up and figured out what was going on. She was now screaming and crying and kept saying over and over "Mom, don't take my kids! PLEASE!"
The two kids screamed and cried and said that they wanted their mother.
The daughter sees Victor and is stunned. The police hold back the boyfriend. One of the officers has searched the house and he comes out and says "There are no beds for the kids. No food in the kitchen and the place is a mess."
Victor hugs the daughter and tells her that it's going to be 'OK' and that the kids needed a safe place to live until she get her life back together. She just weeps.
As this whole thing winds down, we head back to our car. When we get in, I burst out in tears and have a good cry. I could not get the anguish of the mom and her kids out of my mind and cried the whole way home.
I thank God that I haven't had to do that again.
What brought this story to mind was that Victor said to me this week, while we were driving around, "What was the name of that grandmother that lived out in this area?" I told him her name. I hadn't thought of her in years. So right there, we prayed for her. I hope she, her daughter and precious grand kids are doing well. The kids would be in their late teens now.
God bless them.