[Risk No. 96] So, last night on the plane reading the healing book I kind of decided I wasn’t likely to continue praying for strangers. The idea of approaching people with the intent to pray for them felt so … unnatural. I just couldn’t do it.
Then, I walked in the door and checked my email. I found a friend had posted on Facebook something like, “I love Jesus. He’s my Savior. I’m not ashamed. If you’re not ashamed of Jesus repost on your wall.” I don’t know exactly why that riled me so, but it felt like so many of those shallow emails filled with “Christian” platitudes that only the “truly righteous” immediately forward to 10 of their friends. Those really get under my skin!
So, I hopped over to Facebook and quickly wrote, “ Let us all who “like” this go one step further. Let us in faith and radical obedience be the hands and feet, sharing the love of Christ to a lost and hurting world.” And immediately I fell off my high horse and realized that if I truly believed those words I was going to have to step out in faith and obedience and pray for the strangers the LORD leads me to.
I talked to God a lot about this during my quiet time this morning.
I went about my day and kind of forgot the whole thing – which is why I was sort of taken by surprise when I felt that God wanted me to pray for a woman I offered to help at Fred Meyer. I walked with her to her car. She was struggling to push an elderly woman in a wheelchair while I followed behind, pushing her groceries. I was trudging along, feet as heavy as cement bricks. Ugh! What had I gotten myself into?
There was this large African American man in close proximity when I offered to help the woman. He offered an warm smile. Then, as I dragged my feet and did battle in my head with my spiritual willingness and my fleshly reluctance he crossed our paths and offered yet another warm smile. I really felt God put him there to encourage me.
When we reached the woman’s car I waited as she helped Ann, the elderly woman, into the car. Maybe God really wanted me to pray for Ann, but I couldn’t force myself to do it. After getting Ann into the car Shari turned to me and as she thanked me I asked, “Is there a way I can pray for you.”
Her immediate response was, “Well, I’m a Christian too.” And then, “Well yes…Let’s just pray now.” Then she placed her hand on my shoulder as we stood there in the parking lot praying for each other. God is so good!! He of course knew how hard it would be for me to offer to pray for the woman and so He had her suggest it. It just makes me smile thinking about it! – Tiffiney
(Note: this is a record of her first risk!)