It was a beautiful afternoon to take a walk. I was by myself because there were some hard things going on in my life that I didn’t know what to do about and I needed time to think and pray. As I walked, I prayed for direction and wisdom. At one point I sat on a bench and watched the birds flying above the lake in front of me. I was trying to listen to God. Trying to hear answers to the questions in my heart.
But as I got up from the bench I listened to another voice instead. Around the next curve in the path I came upon a woman sitting by herself on another bench. As I approached, I could see she had been crying. For a moment I felt the urge to stop and ask if she was okay but then I heard the lie.
“You can’t even keep your own life together, You have nothing to offer her.”
And I’m sorry to say that I kept on walking. I rationalized that her problems were none of my business and it would have been nosey to ask her anything. Especially since I’d already determined I would be no help to her anyway.
Certainly she could have just met my question with a polite “thanks, but I’ll be fine.” But what if she hadn’t? What if just by asking a simple question I was given the opportunity to encourage her? But I didn’t even give her that chance.
Once again I had believed the lie that I have to be good enough before God can use me. Once again I allowed myself to be held back by limitations that didn’t come from God but had come from my own feelings of condemnation.
As I arrived home, I was beginning to realize what I’d done. And just in case I missed the point, the next morning my pastor’s sermon included the story of the good Samaritan. Bull’s Eye.
Lord, give me ears to hear and eyes to see and then help me to respond as you would respond.
Luke 10:36-37 Which of these three do you think proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?”
“The one who showed mercy to him,” he said.
Then Jesus told him, “Go and do the same.”