I am a creature of habit.
There is a little breakfast cafe that I frequent probably twice a month down the street from the duplex I live in. I order the same french toast meal every single time, and the servers know it by heart. I love my small-town-old-man-regular-breakfast-order-experiences. It’s a comfortable feeling. I could see myself being one of those old men that goes to the same cafe every Saturday morning, with the same server, ordering the same meal, that costs the same price, until one day they change the menu prices on me and it ruins my whole month! So I might be a little Jack-Nicholson-like, from the movie As Good As It Gets, SO WHAT!
Don’t make me change.
My usual server is a recently-divorced, single mom whom my pastor and I had a chance to pray for right there at our table one morning. She broke down in tears as we extended ourselves to her in a way that only the Spirit of God can lead. Because, when I say “we”, I really mean “he”. My pastor is one of these guys that always seems to have his eyes open...to meet a need or hug a heart. And he freaks me out sometimes! How many people grab the hand of the waitress and says “pray for our food with us, and what can we pray for for you today?”! Talk about social boundaries! But right there, in that moment, the flood gates opened and she lost it. She dumped her life on us...how her husband was unfaithful, her church demonized her for the divorce, she’s sleeping on a friend’s couch with her daughter, working two sometimes three jobs, and on and on...
This idea that as Christians we are called by Jesus to live out our faith doesn’t compartmentalize very well in to the nice little box that most of us try to build. You know the box I am talking about...the box us Christians put our ministry goggles in when we are done using them once or twice a week. I’ll be the first to admit that I have suffered from this voluntary blindness. But my pastor saw an opportunity, or maybe he didn’t even know what he was doing, but he stepped forward in FAITH, with HOPE...to LOVE.
Keeping my goggles on...
So yesterday, in true-Nick-fashion, I found myself once again back at my favorite joint, with my favorite server, eating my favorite french toast, with a good friend of mine. When it came time to go to the front and pay the bill, that same struggling single mom that we had prayed for right there in the cafe reached in to her tip jar, and paid the entire bill. Did I want her to? No. But she did. We had gone out of our way to hug her heart days before, in Jesus’ name, and it meant something to her.
Father, in Jesus’ name, PLEASE help me keep my goggles on...for your glory.