Zephan was puzzled by her eager response. But then he remembered she had been there too. “Yes”, he said,”Mrs. Stone said to say hello.” A pause. “I’ve been invited.”
Zephan definitely didn’t expect what happened next. There was silence from his mother, her head turned down and away, as if rejecting his words, when suddenly she lifted her head and turned toward him, her blind eyes wet with tears and her face shining with joy.
“Oh my son, I have prayed for this day,” she said, voice trembling. “”They told you I was there too?”
“Yes.” He nodded, though he knew she couldn’t see. If he waited she would tell him what he needed to know, who these people were and why they did what they did.
“They came and got me the day I was blinded, and took me to the house. I raged for days about the unfairness of it all. But Mrs. Stone was like her name–it all bounced off and had no effect on her. She held me as I cried, listened as I shouted at God, and waited…When I was finally quiet within, she spoke four words, “You have a mission.” That opened a door in my soul I didn’t even know existed. A mission? A mission!”
She paused, and ran her hand through her short brown curls. Long hair was a bad idea for a blind person. “I spent a year there, learning how to live as a blind person, how to accept help with gratitude, and how to be independent. I learned how to used my blindness as a point of witness. Those who saw my peace wanted to know its source and I was happy to share. Then the last part –I was told I would have a son, and he too would have a mission. He was to be treasured by God. Zephaniah. But that the name was not to be revealed until the right time.” She smiled gently at Zephan.
Zephan sank into a chair, his head spinning. The fire in front of him swam in his vision as he re called that strange moment half a year ago. A voice had called “Zephaniah!” from another fire. No one else heard it. He thought he imagined it. But now he wasn’t so sure.