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The Lord Jesus had been with her all the time, and used her at the board and care facility to bless me and others. After all, he used Margaret to get me there in the first place, and it has left a lasting memory. Praise the Lord!

Margaret Freeman

Margaret Freeman was greatly used by the Lord though she was labeled “handicapped.” Her mouth was sharply twisted to one side because she had a brain tumor as a teenager, but that was removed. She went to the church I attended and was picked up from a board and care facility for the services. I knew her in her fifties, and she walked and moved like an older person, and perhaps she accentuated it a bit to gain sympathy. She wasn’t a shy person, and would stand in church to say something out of turn, but everyone understood.

Once in a midweek meeting, Margaret said the devil was bothering her. The seasoned pastor took it in stride, and in his slow nasally tone without a change in demeanor, calmly and in perfect diction, gingerly rebuked the devil. Her head limply hung down, and afterwards she silently sat and the pastor smoothly slipped back into the lesson. About ten minutes later, she stood up and interrupted, “He’s gone! He’s gone!” I was very excited to see this happen, and the pastor said some reassuring words to her.

The next day I had a chance to talk with the pastor in his office as I was the church janitor. I mentioned him casting the devil out, and he said something to the effect that he was trying to humor Margaret. I was somewhat shocked, because I knew the devil had been cast out. What power is in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ!

Sometime later I noticed I hadn’t seen Margaret in a while, and asked the pastor about her. He slowly and soberly shook his head from side to side, and reported that she wasn’t doing very well, and thought she wouldn’t live long. So, I went to her board and care facility for the first time.

It was a nice sprawling place with several buildings that housed the boarders in their individual rooms, though it was a bit rundown. Margaret was sitting on her door stoop, a large thermos cup hanging from her hand, and greeted me with a big smile. She was happy, well, and seemed twenty years younger dressed in slacks and a blouse, instead of a dowdy dress, clunky shoes, and baggy hose. As we talked, I met other boarders, and saw a good opportunity to provide a Bible study there once a week and got permission to do so.

There were friendly and interesting people that lived there. One elderly woman, who was hard of seeing and hearing, wore a stiff salt-n-pepper wig. She had been the former wife of the pastor that started the church Margaret and I attended, and had been a “parsonage wife.” This meant she was not particularly active in her husband’s ministry, but kept house and raised the children. According to their son, the old boy dumped her for another woman – other women. In spite of it, he had a long ministry, was reported to be a dynamic preacher, and on occasion would come from behind the pulpit and jump the altar rail to land in front of the pews. Evidently, his supervisors were blind, deaf, and dumb for the denomination’s reputation, which is not an uncommon disease.

Another woman at Margaret’s place was the neighbor of an old popular comedian, Red Skelton,  in a resort community, but she needed supervision for her nervous problem at the board and care. One time at Bible study, we were looking at John Chapter 11 where the Lord Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead. When we got to the place Christ told the people to take away the stone from the tomb and Martha said: “Lord, by this time he stinketh…” she popped her eyes wide open with a huge grin and loudly inquired, “Does it REALLY say that - that he STINKETH?” We all had a good laugh on that one.

There were other people I became friends with, too. There was Mary who had a bald head from chemo treatments for a brain tumor, but she wasn’t self conscious about it and didn’t wear a hat too often. There was, also, another lady I baptized in the unheated swimming pool, and a skinny older fellow with lots of wavy hair and facial tics from his medication. He told of going on a forty day fast, but panicked when he thought the fast was over, because he didn’t know how to break the fast. It was at that time I understood why the first meal of the day is called “break-fast.”(Funny the things one figures out or remembers.)

Another woman was a chain smoker, and her fingers were nicotine stained, and I think her skin color was affected by the cigarettes, too. She couldn’t bring herself to attend the meetings, though, and heard “voices.” However, she would sit outside and listen to the services through an open window. Of course, the world thinks you are crazy if you hear voices and they might medicate you, and such was her case but she was really being oppressed by devils.

Anyway, one day she was sitting outside while rocking her body back and forth and crying. It bothered me greatly, and in spite if anyone was looking, I approached her, and in the name of Jesus Christ cast the devils away. As soon as I finished, I felt the need to say more, and broke into tongues for a while. All of a sudden, she lifted up her head, and brightly smiled with relief. Then, one of the workers hurried over to her and said, “Didn’t I tell you, Betty, God was going to send someone by today to deliver you!” After that, she came into the service and we all rejoiced. However, Betty never came back again, though she was much better.

I held Bible studies at Margaret’s for a couple of years, and it was a complete service with singing, praising the Lord, testimonies, the Lord’s Supper, and prayer. At the last service, they expressed how they enjoyed the meetings, and I was humbled by their comments. Mary told me they liked the Bible studies because I could explain the scriptures simply so they could understand. This was a very high compliment, and I thank the Lord for the ability.

As time passed, Margaret’s condition finally took its toll, and she was down at the county hospital. I don’t think she knew that I was there though. It would have seemed a tragedy for a person to be shuffled off to a dismal empty hospital room to die alone, but Margaret was not alone. The Lord Jesus had been with her all the time, and used her at the board and care facility to bless me and others. After all, he used Margaret to get me there in the first place, and it has left a lasting memory. Praise the Lord!

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The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.  Amen