Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Old Man Just Sat On The Bench For Several Hours . . .

Today on the way to pick up my wife's mum for church (10:45 a.m.) I noticed, as I drove by, an old man, unshaven, with long hair, and having ragged and quite soiled clothes, sitting on a bus-stop bench. He struck me funny. At 11:00 a.m. as we headed to church and had to return that way, he was still there. Upon taking my mother-in-law home after church, at 1:15 p.m., he was still there and I mentioned it to both my wife and her mom. It was a sweltering day today.

After we dropped my wife's mum off, we went shopping for some needed groceries and didn't get home until 2:20 p.m.  As soon as we got in the door, I got my wife to put two cans of cold pop and some washed fresh and juicy fruit in a bag with some candies, along with a napkin or two,  and I rushed to the bench where I knew the man had been sitting for at least two and one-half hours. He was not there. I guess expecting him to have sat for what would now have been four hours, in 37 degree Celsius heat (close to 99 F). was too much even for someone who had nothing to do.   I returned home.

I wonder how many church goers passed him on both their way to and from church just like I did?   Yet something inside of me said, "Make the effort and go see if he's still there."   God had put him there that morning just for me.   I didn't make it in time.  I didn't get to show him someone cared.  I didn't get to look him in the eye and tell him, "Friend, Jesus loves you."   But that was not the lesson I was to learn today.  Today, God wanted me to learn better obedience.  He wanted me to learn to be willing to listen to the small still voice inside me, to my conscious, to Him, and to go wherever He sends me, when he sends me.  Had I not gone, my "conscious" would have remained unclean and it would have kept me from "fellowship" with God.   Next time, I'll leave the shopping until later.



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