Today I found myself in Little India. It was just a quick stop before heading over to the prayer room. There’s this little shop I get where I get my eyebrows and upper lip threaded. No pain no gain with that apparently. Anyways, I was rushing to leave that bustling and somewhat chaotic part of town when I flew right by a man on crutches who was begging.
Honestly, I barely looked at him and told him no, even when he continued to call out to me, and continued to rush away. I rounded the corner, hidden by an oversized truck and about a half block from my parked car, and came to a stop. In that moment of decision I had a question come to mind. “Am I willing to stop for “the one?” I had 5 ringgit in change from the recent beauty venture. Should I give it to him? Instead of taking too much time to overthink it, I went back around the corner and approached him. He eagerly received me back.
His left foot and calf are turning black. He’s a diabetic. From his broken English I gather he has no family and sleeps on the streets. I gave him the money and asked him if I could pray for him. He readily agreed. As I prayed and asked Jesus to fill him with His love and bring healing to his body, I was stunned when I saw a tear fall to the ground out of the corner of my eye. This man is real flesh and blood, full of emotions and needs. Beaten down and broken like all of us.
I looked at him more closely as I prayed, trying to see him more as the Father sees him. When I finished, he thanked me, with a peaceful and grateful look on his face. I told him that God has not forgotten about him, that Jesus loves him. He mentioned that he goes to the homeless drop in center a few streets over, and I excitedly tell him that I have friends that help there. We exchanged some thank yous and God bless yous, and then I was back on my way.
The entire episode took me less than 10 minutes, and I almost missed that opportunity because I was too busy rushing to “ministry.” How does that even make sense?
I recently listed to a sermon from Bethel about how our “ministry” is meaningless if we’re not willing to stop for “the one.” This is why this question and them was fresh on my mind and heart. If the gospel is only relevant in Christian worship circles or mass conferences but doesn’t apply to every individual then something is seriously missing.
These opportunities to minister the love of Jesus and the love of the Father are everywhere, but we must be sensitive to stop and respond. We must be willing to be inconvenienced, to be in awkward situations. Loving people isn’t always easy and fun and convenient. How many of these moments have I missed over the years because I’m consumed with MY plan, MY agenda, MY schedule, what’s convenient for ME? It was a convicting moment for me. I easily brushed by him, avoided eye contact, actually said no and initially felt no compassion for this man. Where was the heart of the Father in me at that moment?
Oh, how I need the love of Jesus to wreck my heart once again and give me His eyes and heart for the hurting and broken! Lead me to the cross, that place of blood-stained, selfless sacrificial love. May my eyes always be on the lookout for “the one” and my heart filled with love to pour out.
We can change the world just by loving on one person at a time.
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be My witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”