Up and Down

Elevators are kind of like roller coasters, either you love 'em or you hate 'em. Me, I love both. When I was young I rode every ride when the fair came to town with no fear. I went every night rain or shine without fail. God kept me safe through it all. When I was young I also loved to ride elevators. My father and my sister both were in the hospital for extended periods of time. During those times I stayed at the hospital a lot and rode the elevators constantly. On my rides I met a lot of people. Most people were very friendly and always talked and asked me why I was there. Those days were long ago when children and everyone else felt a lot safer than we do now. Nowadays it is unusual to see children on the hospital elevators or anywhere alone. This is why Madison caught my attention at the hospital a couple of weeks ago.
As I walked up the hill and toward the doors to deliver baskets to the CCU waiting room I saw a little brown haired girl standing on the sidewalk. She looked at me and before I had even reached the sidewalk said, "Hi, what's your name?" I said,"Judy, what's yours?" She answered, "Madison."

I told her to have a good day and went on inside to meet the rest of the ministry team and to get a cart from the gift shop to load the baskets on. Madison followed me inside the lobby and smiled and waved through the window of the gift shop. When I came out with the cart she was gone.

We went on up to the second floor and distributed the fruit baskets. We boarded the elevator and went down to the Lobby. As we got off, Madison was getting back on. I said, "Hello Madison!" I asked her if she was having fun riding the elevators. She smiled. I asked who she was with. Madison told me her papaw and he was on the sixth floor. The elevator doors closed Madison went up and I headed out the front entrance until God told me to turn around.
I told my friends I had something I had to do. I got on the elevator and went back up to CCU and retrieved one of the extra baskets we had left in the dining area.

I then got on the elevator and went up to 6. I got off and turned to the left, not really knowing where I was going. Who do you think was standing in the hallway? Yes, there Madison was again. I said, "Madison take me to your Papaw's room." She did. We walked in and I told the gentleman that I had met his granddaughter and wanted to leave the basket there for him. I told him what church I was from and as it turned out he had family who come to our church. Small world? No, I think God ordered my steps and Madison's that day.

I prayed for him and walked to help Madison find a snack machine on the 6th floor so she wouldn't have to ride the elevators so much. But I do imagine she rode them anyway. I know God kept her safe every trip up and every trip down.

Now I don't think my simple prayer was anything special for Mr. Charles (who by the way is a pastor), but I do think God led me to visit his room that day. Why did God do that? If for nothing else to show me He was with me there at the hospital riding with me, keeping me safe, and leading me just as He did when I was a child. And He was doing the same thing for the pretty little brown haired girl who had the smile of an angel.

In life there are up and downs, but God is with us keeping us safe through the entire ride.