I'm too lazy to think of a real title tonight, and I"m leaving town to attend my twentieth highschool reunion tomorrow. (I"ll have stories when I get beck. I'm sure of it!) Before I left, I wanted to share this.
When some friends of ours first moved into a 100+ year-old house, there was a lot of work to be done. It wasn't long before the man across the street started showing up and asking if they'd hire him to do it. Our friend, Rob--having had a colorful past--took a liking to this man, as well as a warning. There were things about him that were a little too familiar. My friend knew that he needed to be careful, but he also knew that the guy needed help. So, he gave him a job and set about visiting with the man everytime he came over to work.
Pretty soon he discovered that the man was a recovering alchoholic, living with a substance abusing wife. To top off the not-so-good situation, the man had been diagnosed with cancer and was also caring for his ailing father. So Rob, with his giant heart, set in to help out. He kept the man employed until he could no longer work. Either Rob, or his wife, took him to his doctor's appointments when he could no longer drive. They managed his finances to the dismay, and tantrums, of his wife, and they looked after his dad. The man was deeply touched by their love. And curious. He began studying the Bible with Rob, and eventually he gave his life to Christ.
Rob's friend grew weaker and weaker. Finances were a huge problem. So, even though the friend didn't ask, Rob offered what he could to help cover expenses. Rob isn't rich, not by a long shot, and sometimes he wasn't sure where he'd get the money to help. Somehow it always seemed to show up.
One night at a Bible study, Rob requested prayers for his friend. At the end of the study, a gentleman Rob didn't know very well approached him with an envelope and said, "This is for your friend." It was thick. Rob figured there must have been fifty one dollar bills or something in it. He tucked it away in his pocket and went home.
When he arrived home, his friend was at his house. He was greatly distressed over some unexpected financial concerns. Rob's wife was equally distressed, because the man needed $1000 dollars and they didn't have it to give. When Rob heard this, he pulled the envlope from his back pocket, suddenly feeling fairly sure that those bills weren't all ones. The three proceeded to count out $1500 dollars.
At the next Bible study Rob told the man who'd given him the money about what had happened. The man then said, "Rob, I never carry cash on me. Right now my wallet is completely empty. But last Thursday, when I was in the bank, I felt the Lord urge me to pull out fifteen hundred dollars and just carry it around. So I did. I didn't know who it was for until you asked me to pray for your friend."
The story struck a cord with me, because the reason we were at Rob's house was to help his wife. She'd recently had shoulder surgery. My daughter had spent the night several days before, and as I drove home, I felt an urge--some small thing saying, "You need to clean her house." I HATE cleaning house. You know what I almost did? I almost ignored it. I'm glad I didn't because, while it helped her, it ended up blessing me more--if for no other reason than to hear that story. I'm afraid if God had told me to give away $1500, I would've pretended to hear static. I hope not though.
Maybe now, when he asks me to do something seemingly outrageous ,I'll remember this story. Then turn up the volume, take notes and get after it.