Something interesting happened today. I did something completely out of the ordinary, and I did it because I heard God specifically say "It's time, Go". For those of you who knew me in middle school and high school, you could vouch that I was incredibly shy and didn't talk to anyone. I was the girl who would sit at her desk, completely quite, with my nose in a book. I was terrified to talk to strangers, for fear of making a fool out of myself. Now don't get me wrong, I had friends, I did talk to people, but it took me awhile to warm up to others. Back then, I had so many insecurities, putting too much thought into what others might think. You would've never caught me walking up to a stranger and talking to them. Although, I did have many instances where the Lord was nudging me and telling me to go say something to a complete stranger, but did I ever do it? Did I ever listen to God in those moments? No. No I didn't because I was afraid. But fast forward to now, completely different person.
So as I always do on Sunday mornings, I go to church and serve with the infants, stop by the coffee shop in-between services and sit by the window, and then I go into the worship center to hear today's sermon. Simple. Every Sunday Routine. But today while I was at the cafe, waiting on my coffee, I caught a young girl (maybe 14) out of the corner of my eye. She had beautiful blonde hair, pulled into a messy bun, and a glow to her face that I couldn't ignore. But there was something else that I couldn't ignore... She was crying. This young girl, lets call her Emma, was hiding behind her mom while she was visiting with a group of people. Emma didn't know that I saw her, to be completely honest I don't think she wanted to be seen. She was hiding for a reason, something was causing her pain. Still waiting for my coffee, I heard God say very clearly, "Enough is enough. It's time, Go." He was telling me to go speak to Emma, but that fear crept up on me... "What do I say"? I stood there glancing back and forth at Emma, seeing her softly cry, trying not to make a scene. I started to think back to a time when I was in a situation very similar to hers; I don't remember why I was upset, but I stood behind my mom, using her as a shield from the world. I tried remembering what I wanted to hear in that moment of pain and confusion, and once I knew what I was going to say... my name was called for my coffee. As I walked up to the bar, grabbed my coffee, and turned around, I made my way towards Emma. As I reached her, I put my hand on her back, and I told her... "You are beautiful and so loved." When she heard those words, she looked up at me with a look of both desperation and relief. I got a quick smirk from her, and then I walked away.
I don't know if I'll ever see Emma again, or if my words even helped, but the point of this story is the decision to step out when God calls you. There's a verse I think of in situations like this, Romans 12:13, "Take care of God's needy people and welcome strangers into your home." We, God's children, are called to love one another; regardless of the circumstances life throws our way. God challenges us to be there for one another, to love deeply without limitations. I hope that Christ gives me more opportunities to love outwardly, because I truly believe that the greater reward is waiting on the other side, with Him.
In this season of my life, I'm working on a number of things, but one of the biggest things God has been revealing to me is the importance of relationships. Diving deeper, investing more time, and pushing the comfort zone aside in order to reach a place of limitless love... not only with God, but with others.
Your pain now, is being used as a stepping stone for later.
Speaking out, trusting in God, you will grow in confidence.
When you step out in faith, God is pleased.
"Keep on loving one another as brothers and sisters. Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it."