There are moments in time in which people plan out the course of their days. Although they do not expect for their plan to be without adjustment, they do hold an inner desire that it won’t. As admirable as this may be, there are may be some unforeseen tasks for them to accomplish that will alter the course of their plan.
On this Tuesday evening, I got out of work and headed to a fast-food restaurant for some dinner. Somehow, as I prayed over my meal, I also prayed for those that could not exercise the privilege of having money to go and buy one as easily as I could do so. As I ate my meal, the Spirit of God brought to mind a vision of a homeless person and then the image of another. These were people I did not know, yet had seen before on my way home from a Bible study meeting. A part of me brushed it off, but still felt that I could buy one of them a meal after the Bible study. Once I arrived there, I had the opportunity to greet and fellowship for a little while with the leader of the group, as well as their spouse.
The focus of the Bible study, at least to me, was on Luke 10: 33-35 (a Samaritan shows compassion to an injured man) and how Jesus had used this illustration to address certain elements that He requires of His followers to put into practice as they serve Him.
Well, on my way home, about half-a-block from reaching an expressway, I noticed a peculiar sound coming from my vehicle as well as a sudden shift in vision from the leveling of the front-right side of it. I realized it had something to do with a tire. I asked God to clear the way for me to maneuver to a safe place and address the challenge; its a deflated tire. Additionally, I don’t have all the tools to make the repair. However, I do have a phone, a spare tire, and a tire iron ... from which I got started with the truck repair.
I call home and ask my folks to assist me by bringing out some tools to my location. While I wait for them, I use what I do have at hand, and get started with my work. The whole time that I am doing this I am singing in a whisper “When I was praying, somebody touched me. It was the hand of the Lord!” I realized that the tire could have failed on the expressway and the challenge could have turned into a mess .... or a big accident. Please note, that during this time, many people drive by and around me, yet no one stops to offer me some help.
As soon as my folks arrive, I unloaded the tools and continued with the work. However, my folks point out that my “spare tire” is low on air, yet not flat. So by God’s amazing plans, the coins I had intended to use for a purchase earlier in the day were not used and I could now use them to get some air. I headed over to a gas station on the other side of the expressway, and put some air into my tire as well as some gas into my tank. It turns out I only have about a gallon left (my fuel-level sensor needs to be replaced). As I wait for my tank to fill-up, God brings to mind the homeless people. So I begin, once again, to formulate a plan as to how to carry out this small mission I have been called out to do.
I proceed to go to a fast-food restaurant, on the other side of the express way. I make my purchase, and I face some challenges with the attendants. Nonetheless, after a long wait, I finally receive my order and I am off to provide the meal to the homeless people. Then I went home.
When I get home I shared something about how when God tells you to feed a homeless person, you have to go and feed the person. I was scolded for doing so (feeding them) and told not to risk myself in doing so again. I was furious and discontent; especially since the person who made the remark has little to no active faith. I sought the Lord, over and over, and He led me to Mark 25: 31-40 (hunger, thirst, shelter, clothing, visit, being there) ...‘Assuredly, I say to you, in as much as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’ I was still furious, but my heart was at peace. I had obeyed Him. I set in my heart to obey Him as He has led me in the past and continues to lead me to this day in service to others.
In a way, God first impressed on me what to do. Then He taught me from His Word. Then I experienced a part of that lesson. Finally, I did in obedience what He instructed me to do.
In closing, people can attempt to manage their time as best as possible. Yet, for those who are followers of Christ Jesus, they are to expect the unexpected and follow the path that is laid out by Him. This path may lead to challenges, learning experiences, servitude, and obedience. Yet, let it be done with the attitude of humility and obedience that we would exercise in serving Christ Jesus.
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R. A. Gómez