I am exhausted from a challenging Workcamp on the Northern Cheyenne reservation this past week. But there were many wonderful things that happened, and there were a lot of God Sightings. Like this one.
I was working the check-in table on Tuesday afternoon to hear from Devotion Leaders as they returned from the sites. At the end of the line was an adult who clearly wasn't part of our camp...a woman who, by her appearance, was obviously a person who lived on the reservation. She looked sad. She asked me, "What time is your service tonight? Can you guys pray for me?"
I said we'd be happy to pray for her. I asked a few more questions and discovered she wasn't one of our residents. We weren't working on her home. She'd been working at the school on Sunday when the youth groups arrived, and as she watched them, she realized they had something special going on. She wanted them to pray for her.
She told me her story, and by the way she told it, you could tell she was sad and depressed. She had two children at home, and she was married, and there were problems in her marriage. She talked about praying for her "house," because it felt to her like a difficult and bad place to be. Her mother had died that past year, and she'd had a miscarriage in April. She had a couple other relatives whose lives were troubled by a number of problems. And she was depressed.
I stood up so I could look at her, and I held her hand, and I said I'd be happy to pray for her. She seemed relieved, and she left, promising to be back. I made sure I got her name (Lynette White Dirt).
So right before God Sightings that night, I introduced Lynette White Dirt, and had her come to the stage. As she walked out, the 382 campers cheered loudly and long. Her body language and sad face revealed she was quite troubled. So I said a few things she'd told me about her life. The audience got completely quiet. She said a few other things on the microphone. And then I asked if I could hold her hand while I prayed, and she nodded yes. I told the audience we all pray in our own ways in our churches and to join me as I prayed for her. And I prayed for God to show love and light to this precious child of God.
When the prayer was over, the audience again cheered for her and stood up. I asked if she wanted to stay for the rest of the program, and to lighten the mood I poked fun at our awesome worship leader and said, "We have a guy who sings. He's sorta funny, but we love him." Everyone laughed, and she laughed a bit and nodded her head. I asked, "Is there a youth group that would welcome Lynette to sit with them?" And they all cheered and wanted her to sit with them, so she went to a close-by group who hugged her and welcomed her.
That night, the program ended by inviting people to stay and pray, and to come sit by the cross if they wanted. And many people did. After a few minutes, an adult male from the group she'd sat with took her to the cross, and he prayed for her there. Then a lot of kids--KIDS--surrounded her and went up to her one-by-one to hug her and say things to her. It was so beautiful! It went on and on. I had to get to staff meeting, so I didn't see whatever came of it, but from what I could tell, the kids just kept loving on her.
I never saw her again that week. People asked if they could take food or anything to her, but we never found out where she was from or how to get to her. But I know that night she was loved very much by our amazing group of Workcampers.