Boldness in Every Season: The Story of Helen Nelson’s Eleventh-Hour Witness

By Becky McCoy

Bold is…leading others to Christ at age 95.

In September 2012, my mother was in the hospital in Indianapolis due to respiratory problems. On a Friday afternoon, her health started deteriorating, and we called in all the family members who were able, to come and see her. Mom also felt that God was getting ready to take her home. She told all of her children and grandchildren who were there just how much she loved them and how she was ready to go be with the Lord. She also asked me to call my brother, Rev. Steve Nelson, who was pastoring in Louisiana. She needed to tell him also how much she loved him and his family.

I will never forget the look on her face. She said to me, “I didn’t know this was going to be so easy!” Then she started singing the song “Going Home, I’m Going Home” with a smile on her face. She knew my dad, and little brother who passed away at age five, would be waiting for her.

For some reason, which we now understand, Mom improved during the evening. The next day, Saturday, she was actually very disappointed that she had not died! She kept asking us why we thought she was still alive. She even had me call my brother, and she asked him why she hadn’t died. He told her, along with what we had been saying, “Mom, God is just not finished with you yet.” She felt she was finished and was ready to go home!

That evening, a respiratory nurse came in to give her a breathing treatment and told my mom that she reminded this nurse of her grandmother. A bond between the two of them developed right then. My mom asked her, as she did every nurse, whether she was a Christian and part of the Lord’s team. The nurse didn’t know what to say, so mom proceeded to share with her how easy it was to accept Christ. Nothing happened at that time, but Mom had planted the seed.

Mom would ask just about everyone she came in contact with whether they had a relationship with Christ and were ready to meet him. She felt very strong about this. She did not want to go to heaven without knowing that she had shared the love of God and how to become a Christian with everyone she could.

On Sunday evening, while I was at the hospital, this same nurse with whom my mom had shared Christ came into the room. We thought she was there to give my mom another breathing treatment. “No,” she said, “I came to join the Lord’s team!” My mom shared with her the plan of salvation and how easy it was to give your life to Christ. She accepted Christ into her heart and I will never forget what happened next. The nurse knelt down beside my mom’s hospital bed and my mom prayed the most amazing prayer with her. Her voice became strong and you could feel the presence of God in the room. What an amazing experience! That is why God was not finished with her yet! At the age of ninety-five, God had used her to win another soul for him!

On Thanksgiving Day 2012, God took Mom home. She had completed her tasks here on earth. It was so hard for us to let her go, but we knew she was ready and her life was complete. I believe when Mom reached those gates of heaven, and my dad and brother were waiting for her, that God said, “You’ve been faithful. Welcome home, my child, well done!”

Boost your witness. Register for the Church of God Convention at www.chogconvention.org. The Church of God Convention is scheduled for June 23–26, 2014 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

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