Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Love Squad

The Love Squad
By Virelle Kidder

"Oh, no! Not company!" I groaned, the moment my car rounded the corner and our house came into full view. Usually I'd be thrilled to see four cars lined up in our driveway, but after I spent a weeklong vigil at the hospital with an ill child, my house was a colossal mess. Turning off the car engine, I dragged myself to the front door.

"What are you doing home so soon?" my friend Judie called from the kitchen. "We weren't expecting you for another hour! We thought we'd be long gone before you got home."

She walked toward me and gave me a hug, then asked softly, "How are you doing?"

Was this my house? Was I dreaming? Everything looked so clean. Where did these flowers come from?

Suddenly more voices, more hugs. Lorraine, smiling and wiping beads of perspiration from her forehead, came up from the family room where she had just finished ironing a mountain of clean clothes. Regina peeked into the kitchen, having finished vacuuming rugs and polishing and dusting furniture in every room in the house. Joan, still upstairs wrestling with the boys' bunk-bed sheets, called down her "Hello," having already brought order out of chaos in all four bedrooms.

"When did you guys get here?" was my last coherent sentence. My tears came in great heaving waves.

"How come...how come...you did all this?" I cried unashamedly, every ounce of resistance gone.

I had spent the week praying through a health crisis, begging God for a sense of his presence at the hospital. Instead, he laid a mantle of order, beauty and loving care into our home through these four "angels."

"You rest a while, Virelle," Lorraine said firmly. "Here's your dinner for tonight - there are more meals in the freezer."

The table was set with flowers and fancy napkins, and a little gift was at my place. A small banquet was arranged, complete with salad and dessert.

"Don't you worry; we're all praying," my friends said. "God has everything under control." After my friends left, I wandered from room to room, still sobbing from the enormity of their gift of time and work. I found beautiful floral arrangements in every room...and little wrapped gifts on each bed. More tears.

In the living room I found a note under a vase filled with pennies. I was to have come home and found it as their only identity: "The Love Squad was here."

And I knew that God had everything under control.

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