This will probably be one of the most encouraging blog I have written to date. Hang on, cause you can’t make this up.
Today, I was asked, by a friend of mine, to help him with some errands and doctor visits. No problem. We did what we had to do. We talked how God is working in other’s lives through his testimony. We discussed private matters that weren’t enjoyable, but necessary. By the end of the afternoon, he was ready to call it a day, until I shared that another friend of ours and I would be back in a few hours.
Later that evening, our mutual friend picked me up and we proceeded to go to our friend’s apartment. We had groceries and cleaning products that he needed. We entered the building and walked to the elevator. As we approached his door, our friend opened it and was taken back by all that we had.
We made our way into his apartment and told him to sit, relax and enjoy the company. A lot of things needed to get done, but we decided to put “feet” only to one or two things. At the end of our “chores”, I continued to work while both of my friends decided to talk about what God was doing. I gathered a few more things and stopped to listen to what they had to say.
My first friend spoke of his past. The horrors he spoke of are too graphic for this post so let’s just say he had problems and lots of them. In tears he spoke of his mother and father. He spoke of the love of his late wife. He spoke about people he had witnessed to and had questions about what he was going through. Joy was in his voice while sadness and contentment yearned for a chance to show their face as well. You could hear the mental and spiritual battle he faced.
Just as my second friend was about to speak, I stopped him and felt that God wanted me to share Psalm 46. Here it is for reference:
God the Refuge of His People.
For the choir director. A Psalm of the sons of Korah, [a]set to Alamoth. A Song.
1 God is our refuge and strength,
[b]A very present help in [c]trouble.
2 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change
And though the mountains slip into the heart of the [d]sea;
3 Though its waters roar and foam,
Though the mountains quake at its swelling pride.
4 There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
The holy dwelling places of the Most High.
5 God is in the midst of her, she will not be moved;
God will help her [f]when morning dawns.
6 The [g]nations made an uproar, the kingdoms tottered;
He [h]raised His voice, the earth melted.
7 The LORD of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our stronghold.
8 Come, behold the works of the LORD,
[i]Who has wrought desolations in the earth.
9 He makes wars to cease to the end of the earth;
He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two;
He burns the chariots with fire.
10 “[j]Cease striving and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the [k]nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
11 The LORD of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our stronghold.
As I read this, soft music was playing so I knew this was a special time, a unique time. (It is not often that nice music plays when I am reading…to me it is often distracting.) I looked over at my second friend who had a small smirky smile on his face. It was evident that my first friend was thinking as his posture showed it.
My second friend took a deep breath, paused and said, “God has ministered to me tonight. Tonight was supposed to be different but God changed those plans.” He proceeded to tell us the many things he was going through and how hard it was. He opened his heart to us realizing that God was in our presence.
As I sat there listening, it was clear that God was moving. Usually when an experience happens like this one, I am usually learning about my walk or am a part of the problem, but this time was different. God allowed me to experience two close friends, share and encourage each other. It was as if I was the outsider observing how God moves in people’s lives.
Both then turned to me and asked me to pray. As we sat an prayed, tears of joy, sorrow, hurt and shame all flowed like a torrential river overflowing it’s banks. During our prayer, one of my friends told God, “It is amazing that you would use a sick friend to encourage me. And my brother to the left, who I despised when we were younger, ministering to me as well…” What? I was ministering?
Here we were, an older man with a extremely horrible past, a man who despised me when I was younger, both thanking God for my life. In my wildest dreams did I ever think that someone would thank God for me. All I had done was share some Scripture that God wanted me to share. I really didn’t do anything. And that was the point.
God wanted all three of us to experience what He planned for us. Only God could orchestrate this small group of friends with such different paths and bring us to a place where we were encouraging and lifting each other up. My night had become complete. I witnessed two men encourage each other to the point of tears. I had longed for this for some time, but now was able to see how God works.
God uses each and everyone of us to do something in other’s lives. He uses us to encourage, support and motivate others into a closer relationship with Him. Only God can orchestrate the unlikely bunch into a close family that cares for each other. Before Jesus left this earth, he prayed, “Let them be one just as you (Father) and I are one.” He also said, “Let the world see their love for each other so that they see how much you love me.” This life isn’t about us. It isn’t about what we can get or what we can do. It is simply about Christ. So now I will pose a question that was posed tonight:
“Is Jesus enough?”
I will leave you pondering the meaning and significance of this question and address it in the next blog. You can’t make this up. God bless and encourage someone today.