I am reading this book called When God Writes Your Love Story. It is teaching me a lot about love. But, I applied a principle from the book and it played out in a way that did not relate to love. The other day I was reading. The book was talking about glorifying God by your actions. It said that we should ask God every day how we can make Him happy, how we can glorify Him. Once we start living life like that, we will have a new perspective on life. So, today... I wake up and pray to God.
Lord, I ask that today you will give me numerous opportunities to make your name known. I ask that you will give me the opportunity to make you happy. If this situation has to be hard or uncomfortable, I ask that you still give it to me. If it is easy, give it to me. I want to make your name known today. I want to make you happy today. I want to glorify you with my actions today. -Amen.
And, this is the story about how I was able to make His name famous.
I met an amazing girl for coffee. She is pretty awesome, and I am pretty stoked for the new friendship she and I have. It is going to be amazing. Leaving coffee, I get into my car and am ready to head home.
An African-American man walks up to my car. He mouths, "Do you have jumper cables?" I roll down my window to apologize and tell him I did not. He looked very hot. He had sweat rolling down his face. He says, "I think my alternator has died. I went to AutoZone and I was $11 short. Can I borrow $11? I will give you my license, my phone, anything you want to hold onto. I will bring the money back to you."
Let me be honest. I am freaking out inside. What am I suppose to do? I do not normally carry cash. I would have typically said, "Sorry sir, I don't have any cash. I wish I could help, but I can't." But... I had cash. I couldn't lie to this guy. He said he had just left the hospital, had stints put in his heart, and shouldn't have even been out in the heat. I did something that I would not have normally done.
I pulled out my wallet and handed him $15. I told him to keep it. It was $15. I didn't need it back. I know God had planned that situation, and I was suppose to let him have it. Otherwise, I would have not had cash on me. He says, "You must be a Christian."
What an interesting thing for him to say. Have I always come off as a non-Christian by saying I didn't have money when asked for money by a homeless person? I am a Christian. This killed me to think that I have always said no, and I was apparently making my Father look bad. Wow!
I said, "Yes sir, I am." He asked me where I went to church. I began to tell him about Elevation and our four campuses. He asked me where I attended and said, "I want to be your guest." I told him I went to Matthews, would be attending tonight at 6:00 and would love for him to be my guest.
He said he will be there!
He asked me to pray for him. Many of you know how uncomfortable this makes me. But, I did it! He didn't tell me what to pray for, but we prayed!
After we prayed, he left. I sat in my car and reflected on this experience. I could not believe what just happened. God's hand was all over that situation. I never carry cash! But, yesterday at Target I felt the need to get cash back. I got $20 but asked for a ten and two fives. Interesting, huh? I was at a Starbucks that I had never been to. We were on East Blvd. Interesting that I would be there, with cash on me, and have that situation....
I have had some time to process this, and all I can think is how I made God's name known by giving this man $15. I could have been selfish and told him that I didn't have any cash, then gone to some fast food restaurant and used the cash that I could have given this man in need. I would not have made God's name famous if I had done that.
In what way can you make God's name famous by changing your actions ever so slightly?
Pastor Steven, Elevation staff and Elevation volunteers,
Thank you for teaching me about generosity. Thank you for teaching me the "One Day Principle". Thank you for equipping me with the skills I needed to glorify God in that situation.