One of our extraordinary BelPres volunteers, Kathy Claudon, helps with a variety of ministries through Mission + Serve. Mary McCracken, Community Outreach Director, asked Kathy to share her testimony with us on the blog. God has done amazing things through Kathy. Enjoy her testimony!
An amazing thing happened to me when I was about 31 years old. I had the unexpected experience of God answering my fervent prayer. It was the Vietnam era, and the mantra was “God is Dead.” I was afraid it was true. I don’t know if I can convey how extraordinary this was in writing, but I’ll try.
Our baby son, who is now a big, strong, father of three blessed sons, was born with an underdeveloped immune system, which, back then they didn’t know how to treat. Our son was so ill the doctors told us, many times, he may not live through the night. Severe asthma, ongoing pneumonia, horrible ear infections–his eardrums burst 90 times. They tried tubes but they wouldn’t stay in. He was in so much pain all the time. He finally developed permanent holes in his ears which relieved some of the awful pain.
He often had so much puss running out of his ears, nose, lungs that no day care or preschool felt safe with him there. Our whole lives were taken over by the “keep our son alive” project. We had him sleep with us so we could hear if he stopped breathing. His life was hospitals, doctors up to three times a day with emergencies, and painful frightening treatments. He would wake up in the hospital after he had become unconscious at home. He didn’t actually get to regular school until 3rd grade. This was before I knew God was real, and hope was hard to come by.
Then one day I was in such despair, I started crying and asking God if he was real and if Jesus was really his son. I cried and moved thru the house praying like a zombie for 3 days and nights. Couldn’t stop. I had to know if life had any meaning. The third day, while I was crying and sweeping our 6 year old daughter’s room and fervently praying, I heard an actual deep voice around me say “YES Kathy, I AM REAL AND JESUS IS MY SON AND UNTIL YOU COME TO ME, PEOPLE MUST HELP EACH OTHER.” An amazing happening!
It still took me a number of years to mature in my faith, but I knew God had blessed me with the most amazing gift he could have given me: relief that he lives.
This is why I am so happy to follow his mandate from that day, that “people must help each other.” This has led me gradually into a joyful life of helping. I assist with the Congregations for the Homeless (CFH) homeless shelter BelPres provides for 40 men for the month of December. I also am blessed to be a tutor in our KidREACH program. (We always need more tutors). And I am assisting in setting up a new BelPres project of feeding breakfast to homeless young people at the New Horizons shelter in Seattle. We would love to have your help to provide a breakfast for about 20 people to help these kids.
I have told this story to Christians, non-Christians, and atheists alike. A few ask me if I was asleep and dreamt this. No, absolutely not! I see some people start doing some deep thinking, and some who know how blessed I was to have this divine experience. So far, no one has called me “crazy” or accused me of making it up.
Believe me, this was a clear answer to my fervent prayer. Again, I thank God for this gift. This is why I am so thankful to be able to pitch in and do as he told me. I’m so glad that our church has so many ways to help people in our community.
Want to help with CFH, KidREACH, or with breakfasts at New Horizons? Contact Get Connected today!