When faced with interviewing a person about how he or she sees God and experiences Him, several people came to mind. The person I chose is my soon to be mother-in-law, Linda Barritt. As long as I’ve known her, the love of God has shown through her and has been a tremendous influence on mine and many others’ lives. She was raised from birth in a Christian home, one of eight children. Her father was a preacher for as long as she could remember. Each opportunity her father got he would pile all eight children, plus he and his wife, into one car and travel hundreds of miles to preach the word of God. In this, her father taught her to be a servant of God and to trust God in all situations, big or small.
Since the age of eleven, she has served Christ through her musical gifts and influenced others as musical leader to do the same. She got married at the age of sixteen to a young man of only nineteen years old, who was already pastoring his first church. Together they bore three children, whom they also raised to know Christ. Now they have two grandchildren and another one on the way. They have faith in their children that they will raise their grandchildren in a Christian home, learning to love Christ as their personal Savior.
Before I decided to interview her, I thought of what her answers may be. Although I knew of her love for Christ, I wanted to know about her personal experience of God in a deeper sense. She told of one particular incident she recalled from the winter of 1978. It was a rainy night and she, her husband, and her three children were traveling home from St. Louis in a borrowed truck. They had all of their earthly possessions, including their car, in the back of this truck. Suddenly the truck started sliding from one side of the road to the other, and all Mrs. Barritt could say was “Jesus, Jesus.” The truck suddenly straightened back onto the road, and the entire family and all their possessions were saved from a possibly tragic ending. She had no doubt in her mind that the hand of God sheltered her family during this experience. She revealed to me that this was only one example of the many times that God revealed His miraculous power in her life.
I went on to ask Mrs. Barritt how she got to know God and what her relationship was with Him now. She enthusiastically recalled, ” As a child my father was a minister and I heard the Gospel all my life. I decided at the age of seven or eight years old to dedicate my life to the Lord and to never turn away from Him.” Today, she says that she has a very personal relationship with God that involves an intimate, one-on-one communication with Him, although she knows that there is definitely room for improvement on her part in her communication with the Lord. She said, ” I know there are days that go by that I don’t talk to God as much as I should, but I just try to do better the next day.”
As I asked her what she thought would happen to her after death, a slight smile graced her face. She said, “I’ll be in a resting place until His Second Coming, and then God will send his Son to take me into His presence. There, I will spend eternity with Him. I will never have to cry again because there won’t be any more sorrow or pain. I’m looking forward to it.” She said the one thing she would ask God when she got to heaven was, “Why do good people suffer?” This is something she never has understood, but she acknowledged, “God has a reason for allowing the good people in this world to face hardship and pain.”