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Sarah Watkins
October 25, 2022
This entry is part 6 of 6 in the series Letters from Raleigh and Morrisville, North Carolina
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Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee
How great Thou art, how great Thou art

James and Marion Merriweather stayed with their son’s family in Charlotte, NC during the month of June. Some of us wanted to visit them while they were in state. One Sunday morning Timothy, Tammy, myself and Jack Parrino (who was in town visiting with his family) got in a car and drove the 2+ hours to Charlotte.

During the car ride we enjoyed each other’s fellowship. At one point, Timothy mentioned the meeting and said he had no idea how it would turn out that morning. He asked if we could all pray together for it. At that time, Marion called me with several things to talk about. One thing was she had picked out a song for the morning and wanted to ask what other song we should sing. I passed that message along and told her we were just about to pray, but would get back to her with a suggestion after that.

There was a song on Tammy’s heart – How Great Thou Art. We all felt good about that song. After enjoying some prayer together for the time, we sent the song to Marion.

When we arrived at the house, we were greeted by their daughter-in-law Rose and the dog, Rio. It felt like walking into home. We were all warmly received as if we were family; not strangers meeting each other for the first time. We greeted James and Marion and met their son, Jerome. I also invited my friend from Charlotte, Kendolyn, to join us that morning.

After everyone had arrived and settled in, we came together and began to enjoy the Lord. Several saints also joined us over Zoom. We started with the song Marion had chosen – What a Friend We Have in Jesus. The Lord began to touch something within us. There was sweet prayer that followed. Each one offered something, whether a prayer, a verse, an inspiration or a testimony. That opened up the fellowship and Marion began to share what was on her heart.

Meanwhile, part of me began inwardly reacting. We’re starting to fellowship now? What about the second song? Aren’t we supposed to sing all the songs first?! Yet, I quieted those inner thoughts and just decided to see where the fellowship would lead. 

Marion’s sharing inspired someone else to share what was on their heart. One sharing lead to another. It all seemed to flow together so well, as if the Lord Himself was leading it. Then Jerome shared an experience that the Lord was bringing him through. I was amazed that he would feel free to share that testimony with people he’d only just met. As I was listening to each one participating, I realized that only the Lord could arrange our lives in such a way and also only He could bring such a diverse group of people together like this. 

After much fellowship, we decided to sing the second song. How Great Thou Art. At that point, I truly felt that Jesus had chosen that song. It elevated us to an even sweeter and higher experience with the Lord, which was clear from our prayers which followed.

Afterwards, we enjoyed lunch together. Jerome’s buddy joined us, as well as a few of the Merriweathers’ grandkids. You could see the joy on the brothers as they grilled together and cracked jokes as if they’d known each other for years. Marion shared many of her experiences of the Lord to the sisters over lunch. She had us howling with laughter as well amazed at what the Lord had brought her through. When Timothy came over, we were shocked to find that time had flown by so quickly and it was time to leave. 

Jerome and Rose told us we were family and welcome to come back any time. Kendolyn didn’t have to leave as quickly, and she seemed right at home with them waving at those of us who were heading back to Raleigh. 

The car ride back was also joyful. I thought, this is what it’s like when the gathering is lead by the Spirit. This experience today is a picture of the church life. Lord Jesus, only You can bring people together like this. Only You can arrange our lives so perfectly. My God, How Great Thou Art.

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