"Place of Honor"

by Erin

Though the marriage I am about to share with you wasn't in trouble, it does have significance due to how many women are finding themselves facing what Olive faced with dignity and "smiling at the future." I was blessed to be able to get to know Olive by way of her being an extended family member. My daughter-in-law mentioned one day that her brother's wife, her sister-in-law, was looking for more houses to clean. Though I'd always had many of my own children helping me clean, with so many already married, with just as large a home to clean, I felt the pull to hire her when I sought God about it.

Right away I saw how Olive was so good. She was very quiet and also worked diligently each week she came. Later, after she was done, I found myself just talking to her (with me doing almost all the talking), just like I'd talk to my own daughters. I felt badly for keeping her when I knew she had a little boy she needed to get home to, but when I spoke to the Lord about helping me just to let her leave after she was done, it never failed that we would just talk, sometimes for hours. I didn't know much about Olive or her past, but I had heard how she stayed with her husband when he went through some pretty tough times (though I never heard or asked to hear all the details). So I had always admired her inner strength and because the only topic I'm really passionate about is the Lord, I just assumed she was a Christian.

What I didn't know is that my own DIL, and her own mother, had been praying for Olive. For her to come to know and experience the Lord. It was only later that I understood that God was using me to water the seed they'd planted. It was just by being a friend and loving her (paying her well and tipping her generously also went a long way to maybe her sticking around a while ;) and simply talking about how intimately my HH played a role in every aspect of my life. Eventually, she told me they were moving, and when she told me, we even discussed her driving back every other week, but the Lord was done with watering the seed—He was about to bring about His harvest!

Olive had to face something that would have been impossible without her having a deep relationship with Him. What happened right after they moved, and what continues to this day, still astounds me! Olive's husband, my DIL's brother, was contacted by an old girlfriend on Facebook— who said she'd had his baby! A little boy who was just a little older than Olive's precious little boy who was a toddler. DNA proved he was the father, but that only confirmed what Olive told her husband the moment she'd heard. Not only did Olive want her husband to support his little boy financially (even if it meant that Olive would need to clean more houses), but she wanted to embrace this little boy as a real son to her and her husband. Because he had a mother, the former girlfriend of her husband's, she didn't want this former girlfriend to feel threatened, so she'd invite BOTH of them to their home for every holiday! Olive even bought a Christmas stocking for their mantel (I saw it!) and also noted that this son's stocking was right next to her husband's stocking—even before her own son (since he was older than her son), giving him a place of honor!

Soon after welcoming this little boy and his mother into their family, they welcomed another baby boy to make this three cord of sons even more special. I've seen pictures of Olive since then, and her face glows! This story of restoration is witnessed by so many who know the whole story and are equally amazed by Olive and wonder how she could do it.

There are many women who come to HopeAtLast.com who are asked to go through something similar (though as we know, no two restoration journeys are ever exactly alike). But there are only few who are willing to accept this path as graciously or as lovingly due to them not understanding the blessings that come with being called to go through trials like this. My hope is that you will share this with many other women, sending them the link in order to help them with what they may be facing or will be asked to deal with in their future.

True, accepting this IS impossible, but not when you look deeply into His face. Only then can you "smile at the future" knowing whatever He sends us, in whatever form, will always have a blessing hidden within the tragedy if we will only take the time to look for it.

~ Olive

This testimony will be available in 

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Restoration Journey and experienced a RESTORED MARRIAGE.