Part I is called, "A Knock At the Door." After you finish reading, comment below your thoughts!
It was the year 1934. The girls at the Bluebridge Orphanage huddled around the fireplace in the main hall. It was late November, and winter had fully arrived to the little Colorado town.
The Bluebridge Orphanage for Girls had been started three years before, when God had called Mr. and Mrs. McGrady to help orphans in nearby areas. They had found an old abandoned building for a low price, and the kind folks from their church had helped to fix up the building, paint and clean it, and even donate furniture they didn't need. God's hand had been a part of the whole process.
Sometimes they would be low on food, or could not afford to pay for electric, but God always provided. They were now up to 26 girls, ranging from six months, to eighteen years. The McGrady's were kind-hearted people, and had let the oldest girl, Charity, stay, even after she came of age.
This particular evening they sat around the large fireplace, old Mr McGrady, with six year-old Rosa on his lap; wrinkled Mrs. McGrady, rocking wee little Beth, the youngest, and all of the others, settled around on the floor. The fire was the only way to keep warm, since they couldn't afford to pay the electric at this time. But it was cozy, and they were content.
Suddenly, a knock sounded at the front door. Charity went to see who it was, but when she opened the door, she could not see well, for the night air was foggy and dark. After a moment, her eyes made out a dark figure.
"Come in," she beckoned, holding open the door. When they came in to the light, Charity realized it was a young woman, probably in her early twenties. "May I help you?" she asked.
"I'm looking for a Mr. and Mrs. McGrady. Are they here?" The woman questioned. "Yes, right this way," Charity answered as she led her down the hall.
When there, the woman nodded to the them both, and began. "My name is Evangeline. I come from the Calcutta Missionary Organization, in India. In mid-July, I had a vision. I saw your orphanage. There was an angel in my vision, an he said that God wanted me to come here." she paused."Back at the mission, I cleaned, cooked, and taught the children that lived there. For some reason, God has called me here. If you will let me stay, perhaps these services could be of use to you."
There was a moment of silence, as the McGradys took in the information. "You came all the way from India alone?" Mrs. McGrady asked in wonder.
"No, not alone. God was with me each step of the way." the woman replied. After another moment, Mr. McGrady said that they had a cot that no-one used, and then left to get it out.
The children began to crowd around Evangeline, excitedly asking her various questions. "How far away is India?" "Why don't you look Indian?" "What is it like in India?" "Now, now," Mrs. McGrady told them. "Not tonight. I'm sure she is tired, and you all are too. Off to bed, there will be plenty of time in the morning," and with that the children filed down the hall.
"I'm sure you must be tired," Mrs. McGrady said. "We don't have a proper room for you, but for tonight Mr. McGrady has set up the cot in the hall. Hopefully that is alright."
"That would be more than alright," Evangeline answered with a smile.
The next morning during breakfast, the McGradys told Evangeline that they decided to let her stay. The Lord must have a reason for sending her there, and they certainly did not want to send her away. "We could use your help tending to the younger children, while the older ones do their school and chores," Mrs. McGrady told her. "And I'm sure they'd love to hear about some of the things you did in India," she added.
And so it was decided that Evangeline would stay. Not only would she tend to the children-she also had another plan. It wasn't completely formed yet. She needed to decide some things, and make some plans. But she couldn't wait to surprise the children.
Little did she know, there was more than one surprise in their midst...