She looked like life had been pretty rough and that drugs had her locked in a prison she probably didn’t build by herself.
She was standing by the gas station and I was still sitting in the truck. I just looked at her for a moment and saw a hurting soul and wanted her to know her worth because somehow I could tell she wasn’t aware that she mattered. Maybe nobody had told her or treated her as if she meant something.
She didn’t ask me for any money or anything. I felt a tug on my heart and reached into my purse. There were 5 Canadian coins and I felt compelled to give them to her, of course, not even certain if she’d be offended that I offered them.
She took them and thanked me.
All I said was, “You’re so welcome.” Immediately as I took a step I wished I’d told her it wasn’t really me who moved my heart, but Jesus. I regretted that the second I had I didn’t say this in words to her because He’s the One she needed to hear from; not me.
Within about 3 minutes she walked through the aisles to me and thanked me again. I was so grateful to get to say, “Jesus is the One who moved me. It’s not actually from me. He loves you.”
She thanked me again and smiled.
Then a few minutes later, she walked back over where I was filling coffee cups for my now not homeless anymore family. She said beautiful, real words that are worth MUCH more than 5 dollars (loonies, as Canadians call them.)
She said, “I’ve been struggling with my faith.”
I said something like, “Prayer is where doors open that no other key can unlock. Please start praying and God will move in ways you know He’s there.”
She kept walking back to me several times to talk more about Jesus before I left and I thought to myself, “If I hadn’t paid attention to God nudging my heart to give and had only looked at her with my own human eyes and judged that she may spend the money on more drugs, I’d have missed the moment to share Jesus with her but because I listened and obeyed better I did not miss the moment. (I did a little happy dance prayer in my head right then; just me and God.)
I did see that she used the money to buy breakfast but even if I hadn’t, it’s okay.
I am responsible for how God shows me to give and she is responsible for how she uses the money; for how she receives.
It’s that simple.
When we feel moved to give, give. When we don’t, don’t.
But please always ALWAYS treat someone as if she matters because she does and you may be the first or only person she’s heard that from in a very long time.
In those moments a quick prayer can open a closed or hurting heart and invite communication to restore faith in The One who loves us most.