"What He ordains for us each moment is what is most holy, best, and most divine for us." Jean-Pierre de Caussade

Thursday, February 26, 2009


I had one of those surreal moments Tuesday night during our ladies’ Bible study. I had dismissed the women from our discussion group and they had just a few minutes before heading into the sanctuary to watch the teaching on the big screen. It was during that intermission that one of the ladies, who was coming in late, came to the door of the fellowship hall and asked me to step into the foyer. With her there was a woman who was obviously in some kind of distress. Thus the woman began to tell me her story.

With her fists clutched at her throat and her whole body shaking profusely, she proceeded to tell me that she had just received a call that her mother had had a massive heart attack about 30 minutes prior and was not expected to live. She was trying to get to Grady Memorial in Atlanta to see her and needed gas money.

It was at this point that I took the woman’s hands and looked her straight in the eyes. “Ma’am,” I said. “This is the 3rd time you’ve approached me asking for money to get to your dying mother.” (Actually, the first time it was in the Zaxby’s parking lot, and it was her father who had had a heart attack down in Florida. I was on to her then, too.) And then out of my mouth came some of the strongest words I think I have ever spoken to anybody. But hopefully, words of freedom. However, it didn’t take her long to snatch her hands from me, throw them up in the air and wave them back and forth as she ran out of the building yelling, “I’m sorry! I’m sorry!”

I looked at my friend who had brought her in, and I said, “Well, that was different.”

After finding myself in such situations, I always regret I didn’t do more; or I’m sorry I didn’t say something different. But yesterday I received a blog forwarded to me from a friend, and in that blog were these words by Rick Bonfim: "The Holy Spirit only deals with areas in our lives that sustain life. Never frivolous, never uncaring, never performing, never egoistic, never manipulative, never superficial, never tormented. Only truth, only Word, only discovering and revealing that which affects life and brings death. It does not necessarily begin in the past. The Holy Spirit begins where He wants to begin and finishes where He wants to finish. "

Oh, how I pray that’s what happened that Tuesday evening. That what I said was just what that woman needed to hear in her life at that particular moment – and that it was “only truth… only that which affects life and brings death.” And that the Holy Spirit began and ended where He wanted.

As the woman ran out the door that evening, I had the strangest feeling of what the 12 newly commissioned disciples might have felt as they stepped off the boat onto the shore and met their constituency. Surely it was an overwhelming moment for them – and one I’m not sure they ever got use to.

Just an ordinary moment…


Leah said...

Hi!! Saw you on the LPL Scripture Memory team and thought I'd say Hello to a fellow Georgia peach!!

The story about the woman looking for a handout it funny and pitiful. I want to be kind to the poor but we also must be wise.


Beth said...

I thank you for your comment on my blog about blood pressure. I went by wal-mart to take it yesterday and the MINUTE I sat down my pulse was 105! I am not kidding. The b/p was 143/90 so at least the bottom number was lower.

I love your blog! I will definitely be stopping her regularly. I feel the genuineness here of your love for the Lord.

In HIm,

Anonymous said...

Visiting here seems to give a sense of peace. Thank You!