12617284664_3a2802ea7b_b I would like to tell a story. There once was a man from a very affluent family. His mother was Ivy League educated and his father was a very well off lawyer. His family sent him to an Ivy League school as well.  While in college the man suffered from depression. His view on life was cynical and he was always sad. His mother decided that she could cheer him up by bringing him on trips to Europe. One day as they looked out on a vivid Parisian sunset his mother remarked “Look at that. I have never seen anything like it.” The sky was cast against the grandeur of the antique city, aflame in its last colors before it would die only to rise again in the morning. Even in awe of such a sight that had inspired the greats of this world; his only comment was negative. He started using drugs and drinking heavily to cure his sadness. Around this time he met a woman and secretly fathered two children. The mother was a shameful woman- she was a drug addict and not someone you would bring home to a family such as his. Nevertheless for the first time in his life he was happy. He would tell his sons that they meant the world to him as they fell asleep. He would stay with them for a few months at a time and then go back to work for his affluent mother in her clothing store. He would earn enough money and then return to his children. One day though, he passed away as a result of using prescription narcotics. The man’s father would hide the children and the mother from the rest of his family, for fear that serious financial aid might be discussed. The affluent families in the town all knew of the two children and over the year saw that the children had tutors and things. Many years passed and the grandfather died. The two children were now grown when their foster father discovered that the grandmother was living in Ohio, having divorced the grandfather decades prior and having remarried a doctor from her church. What is more, the foster father recognized the woman; she had been a member of his church 20 years prior at the time of the son’s death. Although the world seemed unjust to the two children, God weaved a tapestry of their struggles. The shameful woman from the story prayed day and night for 20 years, marking the birthday of the man she loved each year in solitude. She prayed that her children would be watched over- that they would be safe. Outcast from the church and by society she never lost hope that God would see her children through. The foster father worked tirelessly for the children’s sake taking them as his own, seeing them adopted by parents who loved them. The adoptive parents struggled for many years doing everything in their power to make up for the loss of the father and the mother. Through all things God works, not only in obvious ways. Not only in ways related to the specificity of the church, but in the lives of families. The children became successful and were blessed with loving wives. As the children met their grandmother for the first time they were struck by how much time they had lost, but I would like to think of how much they gained in spite of it all. Some stories do have happy endings.