Someone came into our Thrift Store Drop-In today and asked to speak to me about “religious stuff”. I had no idea what to expect or what turns such a conversation might take. Looking into folded hands he said, “do you remember when Jesus told the man to pick up his mat and walk?”

Yes, I surely do. In it, Jesus heals the man who has been a paralytic. It is a story that I think of often: when I visit my mom who has lived in hospital for more than a decade, when I hold the hands of friends at The Dale who are struggling, when I consider the toll Multiple Sclerosis is taking on my husband.

He continued, “I want even a portion of that for my friend who can hardly walk and is too skinny and has no money.”

I could feel a lump rise up in my throat as he emphatically talked about the desire for healing. Over the last number of weeks I have thought of little else. The deepest part of me has been consumed with wondering why healing seems so far away. Honestly, it might even be the reason why I’ve been so quiet here.

Our talk was relatively short and finished with, “will you pray for him? We have to keep believing” before he excused himself to go and buy some food for the ailing friend. I was struck and encouraged by his faith. This stranger, probably unwittingly, reminded me that where there is faith, there is hope.