So, last week, I was contacted by someone who wanted to meet with me.
We agreed to meet at a local coffee shop (in between a MILLION kid things that required me to run all over town like a maniac…such is life of a mom of four).
I’m not going to lie. I’m always a little nervous when I meet new people. Maybe it’s the closet introvert inside of me wanting to hide in a cave somewhere alone with my journal – maybe it’s insecurities or maybe it’s just that I’m human and get uneasy when I’m not sure what I’m walking into. Either way, I get a bit nervous.
I arrived early, grabbed coffee and sat down.
(Actually that’s not true. I went to the bathroom to check my hair before sitting down. Stupid, I KNOW. But, I’m a girl and it was windy and it was the first time this person would meet me. Whatever. Why am I EVEN still talking about this)
So, I’m sitting there sipping my coffee praying for the Lord to help me overcome myself. Because, in the moments I get to be Jesus with skin on (which truthfully should be every minute of every day), the BIGGEST obstacle I am fighting is myself. The moment I stand in my own way, is when I risk missing the miracle God is inviting me to be a part of.
But it’s the truth.
I was internally fighting myself when she walked in. Nerves were present. But I powered through and she sat down.
As I listened to her story, any walls I had fell. I was surprised (yet again) that we are ALL human. ALL hurting and are ALL carrying a desperate, dying, insatiable need for Jesus.
ALL OF US.
The only difference between me and her is that I’ve walked a bit further down this road. And out of that comes a richness and a love for people just like her that is SO intense when it hits that I can’t stop the words, the tears and the anthem to cheer her on from flying out of me.
And that’s what I did.
I listened to her.
I cried with her.
And then I showered her in the only truth and hope I have to give:
I was intense. I was bold. I spoke with authority.
I breathed life into her deep, dark hole and cheered her on toward fighting for her freedom.
All wrapped up in a love so profound for someone I just met, that it is only explainable through knowing Jesus himself.
I can love because HE loved me.
I can use my words, my hands and my actions to heal ONLY because he healed me.
This is the gospel.
Coffee shop style.
(Which suits me better anyway) 😉
After a few hours of talking, she looked at me with tears streaming down her face and said,
I feel like you’ve given me some hope
She stood up to leave when (you guessed it) God told me to pray for her.
And, there I went again inside my head…
Oh….right. Pray for her.
Inside this coffee shop where EVERYONE will stare at us?
Of course you would want me to do that (a bit snarky)
Because that’s what being a Christian is:
Healing the sick and setting captives free everywhere I go.
Right as she stood I blurted out,
I need to pray for you before you go
(I didn’t really ask permission)
I laid hands on her and the moment I began to pray, the whole room went silent. I swear, you could’ve heard a pin drop. My eyes were closed, but I’m pretty sure everyone was looking at us.
It rattled me.
But, I was committed so I just decided to press on and make this one COUNT.
And, people, I PRAYED.
Like I was in church.
Prophesying and all kinds of stuff.
But, I wasn’t in church.
I was in public.
In front of a bunch of people.
After I finished, my eyes were met by what-felt-like-a-million-but-was-probably-only-about-ten faces staring at me (their mouths weren’t open, but the look on their faces said they should’ve been)
That may be the only church they ever see. And, that might not be such a bad thing.
As I left the coffee shop I was SO pumped that I nearly tackled a lady smoking in the parking lot. I was ALL READY to start praying for her (again uninvited. I gotta work on that) but I was super late and had to keep moving.
Maybe next time.