Have you ever felt a nudge to do something, to say something, to reach out to a person you may not know? Did you follow through?
I absolutely believe that there are times when God, through the Holy Spirit, calls on us to be His hands, His feet and His voice to provide comfort to others.
Unfortunately, there have been far too many occasions when I have felt His push to do or say something to help others and I haven’t listened. I suppose it was out of fear of rejection, fear of intruding and/or the treading on toes that I did not listen to the whispers of God and did not do as I was asked. Any and all excuses were lousy and I always felt convicted when I allowed the opportunity to connect pass me by.
Today was different.
Today I noticed that the sweet lady who sat in front of my mom and me was stealthily wiping tears from her eyes while she sang songs of praise. I had seen her do this two weeks prior and had assumed that the songs of praise made her emotional but today I recognized the look on her face. It was the look of a person experiencing the deepest sadness and loneliness. At that moment I felt an undeniable nudge.
“Write her a note.”
“But I don’t know her! She doesn’t know me!”
“Write her a note!”
“But she might be embarrassed that someone noticed that she was crying.”
“Write her a note!!”
“But she might be offended or think I’m a weirdo stalker!”
“Write the note!”
I had to borrow a pen from the man behind me but I wrote the note.
I rewrote the note!
As we got ready to leave, I took a deep breath, walked up to her and said, “Hi! I have a note for you.” Pushing the note gently into her hand, I said, “Have a wonderful week!”
She turned her sad eyes toward me, smiled big and said, “You have a note for me?” I nodded and smiled at her and her son as my mom and I turned to leave the sanctuary.
My son says that I worry too much. He’s right. I fretted all afternoon. I worried that I had overstepped and made her feel uncomfortable. I worried that I may have offended her. I told mom, “Well, I may have upset her so much that she chooses to sit somewhere else next Sunday.”
As God would have it, I was wrong and Brenda texted me several hours later. Her husband, the broad-shouldered man who always sat to her left in the pew had died. One year and ten days after my sweet Steve died, her husband passed away. She is broken-hearted. Her text, in part, read, “I want to thank you for the note today. It was perfect timing because I kept praying to God asking him to relieve my pain for a second so I can breathe. Thank you for taking the time to care. You have no idea how much it meant.”
Oh, yes, Brenda! I DO know how much it means to have someone show that they care! It means everything!
I cannot articulate just how grateful I am that I listened to God this morning! I believe that He pushed me, nagged and encouraged me to write that note to you because He wanted YOU to know, without a doubt, that He hears YOU. He wanted YOU to know, through a simple note written by a woman who recognized the tears of grief, that He loves YOU. He treasures YOU! He wants YOU to breathe and to be at peace. He wants YOU to know that He sees YOU and that you are NOT alone.
I will try to follow God’s little nudges better in the future and I look forward to sharing a cup of coffee with Brenda soon!
“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Psalm 34:18.
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.” Matthew 5:4