Dede Jefferson checked the weather report on Monday morning in a panic when she realized the pending storms would cause her to reschedule a large event with over 60 anticipated guests. What would have been a busy day with event prep suddenly turned into a fully cleared calendar which would come in handy as soon as Mr. Charles Anthony walked into Cornerstone.
Mr. Anthony came to tour Cornerstone without an appointment along with his pastor’s wife and another church member. The ladies had recently become aware of Mr. Anthony’s circumstances and knew that they needed to take action. After losing his wife and brother years prior, he was without any family, that is, except for his church family. It soon became clear to his church family that his living conditions were severely compromising his quality of life. Although they weren’t exactly sure what to do, they knew that Cornerstone was a good place to start.
Dede got the call from the front desk that the group was downstairs hoping for a tour. After understanding the details of Mr. Anthony’s story, Dede quickly conferred with Britany, Cornerstone’s Executive Director, saying, “We’ve got to help this man, immediately.”
Due to circumstances beyond his control, Mr. Anthony was without any worldly possessions. But that didn’t stop Dede. She spent the day pulling together everything he would need, from a closet full of clothing, to a toaster oven and everything else in between to result in a fully furnished apartment. Incredibly, everything he needed was already available at Cornerstone as many items had been donated or left behind by other residents who had recently moved on.
“I started my day very disappointed thinking that the weather had held us back from an important event. But, now I know that it was provisional that my calendar was unexpectedly cleared so that I could jump into action. God had already provided everything we needed to get him taken care of, down to the smallest detail,” explained Dede.
Later that day, Mr. Anthony came back to Cornerstone when Dede proudly said, “Come with me, I have a surprise for you.” After an elevator ride and short walk down the hallway, Dede opened up the door to the apartment and turned to Mr. Anthony saying, “Welcome home! Everything you see here is yours!”
But that’s not the end of the story, nor is it the beginning of the story. Many years prior, Dede, a single mother, found herself in need when this same church family provided her with food pantry items to feed her young children. Dede went on to find her career at Cornerstone where she committed to praying in each vacant apartment for God to send someone who really needed the ministry that the community provides. Only days prior to Mr. Anthony’s visit to Cornerstone, Dede stood alone in that same apartment praying for God to send someone who needed to be there and allow her to recognize them when she met them.
“As soon as I met Mr. Anthony and heard his story, I knew that he was the one I had been praying for. When it was time to show him an apartment, I knew exactly which one was his,” said Jefferson, “I was able to tell him, I’ve been praying for you before I ever met you.” A massive smile grew instantly across his face followed by an embrace between he and Dede.
Matthew 6:31-33 says, “Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”
While years apart, both Dede and Mr. Anthony experienced God’s faithfulness to supply their every need with unexpected blessings that seemed to come full circle.