In our small town of Johnston lived a giant of a woman-Lib Steadman. She always had a smile on her face and prayer in her heart.
When I heard of Mrs. Steadman’s passing, I knew I had to share her unforgettable story in my new book entitled, Sweet Tea Secrets from the Deep Fried South .” Published by Tyndale, the book is filled with over-the-top, fun Southern stories. Also included are sweet stories highlighting amazing Southern women.
Just to set the stage, Southern women are passionate about looking their best when leaving home. I always joked with my mother that her hair had not moved since 1962—the year Aqua-net was invented. Women in the South never forget the day they made the crucial mistake of not putting on their “face”. And, of course, they came face-to face with old boyfriends, snobby Southern Bells, the preacher, the hottie bug man, the postmaster, the town gossip…..
Lib never had to confess to such an egregious act of not being prepared, this goes against the unspoken code of being a cultured Southern lady. Lib always looked beautiful; more important than makeup on her face was being covered in prayer. Lib believed that the Lord takes care of every detail…even down to parking your car.
Now to some this may seem over-the-top, plus how could you bother God with such minor details? After all, He is terribly busy but Lib believed otherwise, so she asked the Lord to please watch over her and to provide the best parking space. And I can testify to that fact that those who ventured out with Lib were amazed that her parking space prayers were answered.
My mother was curious about Lib’s “parking prayer.” We were out shopping and circling the parking lot at Dillard’’s. Suddenly my mother pointed to a parking spot and exclaimed, “There‘s a LIB!” So from that day forward, Eleanor became a believer in Lib’s parking prayers.
Recently, one of Lib’s daughters shared this journal entry.
Friday, April 11
Each day as I go to the banks for the deposit books, I say a believing prayer for a parking space. Once I said I wouldn’t bother God for a place because I was NOT in a hurry and there was no parking space. I don’t want to bother God about little things but I really believe He is interested in everything.
As I write this story, I can only imagine Lib being ushered into heaven to her own parking sign that reads: RESERVED FOR MY FAITHFUL SERVANT, LIB. THE EFFECTUAL FERVANT PRAYER OF A RIGHTEOUS (MAN) WOMAN AVAILETH MUCH. JAMES 5:15
And this, my friends is something you can take to the bank.
Jane Jenkins Herlong is a Sirius XM Humorist, international best-selling/award-winning author, professional singer, recording artist, award-winning professional speaker and member of the Speaker Hall of Fame.