Wednesday, May 16, 2012
Lately, I've been thinking a lot about prayer and, to me, Emily Dolton (whose photo was chosen to represent the Mission for our 3-6-5 project this week) is a great representative for prayer. Emily Dolton founded the Mission with her husband over 100 years ago. She and her husband Thomas, like most Mission founders, were reaching a hand of help to familiar faces. Emily was raised in the knowledge of Christian things but, as an adult, made self serving choices. One of those choices was to marry a man who hated the restrictions of Christianity and loved "laughter" and "fun," the same as she did. He also loved alcohol. When their children were born, Emily began to take a look at her life and realized that her priorities had changed. She returned to her Christian heritage and discovered a personal relationship with her Savior. Thomas' feelings on her decision were negative. Her response was to pray. For ten years, she prayed for her husband. Being a firm believer that God always answers prayer (either yes, no, or not yet), I can see why Emily continued steadfast in prayer, never giving up on her faith or her husband. Now knowing the rest of the story, we know that Thomas did come to accept that "Jesus Saves," and his newfound passion for that truth led to the founding of City Rescue Mission of Lansing. For the rest of his life, Thomas would faithfully serve the Lord in this ministry to "rescue" the lost and hopeless. And Emily served at his side until he passed away in 1942. She continued to minister at the Mission until her own health declined, but she was able, daily, to witness the power of prayer, not only in her life but in the lives of those impacted by the Mission. Her prayers made a difference to her husband and family, and they continue to make a difference today, to every man, woman, and child who comes to the Mission and receives rescue. Thank you for helping us continue the work begun by the Doltons over a century ago. Thank you for being a rescuer and helping us help others!