I Prayed. God Answered.
On my drive home yesterday I prayed.
Ever since Darian and I moved halfway across the country to our new life in Florida, things have been wonderful. Darian accepted a job in the school district working with a new mental health branch, we bought our dream home in a quiet little neighborhood, and we have already had family come and visit us on multiple occasions.
Life is great.
However, there is something that I am passionate about that I was not doing. This is something that is important, not only for my personal growth, but my spiritual. We have lived here a little over two months and I do not have any stories to tell or moments to reflect on.
I love the discipleship process. I love meeting new people. I love actively praying for them and watching God work slowly in their life. I love finding subtle ways to serve them and tell them about my career, my faith, and my story.
But I didn’t have any of these in Florida.
So, I prayed.
I was feeling particularly ‘brave’ on my drive home yesterday evening. It takes an extra dose of energy for me to engage in conversations with new people, but on this drive home I felt God’s Spirit doing something in me.
God, open a door; give me an opportunity. I know I need to be actively involved in loving others and sharing your love with them, but I don’t know where to start. Maybe my neighbors? We have lived here a month already and I only know a few. God, provide me an opportunity to engage with one of my neighbors this evening.
Here is something I learned about prayer: pray boldly and pray specifically. That’s when you will see God work
I think you see where this is going and why I think it’s so important to tell you about it. God provided. After 30 minutes of working in the front yard, I move to the back to find my neighbor outside with his dog. We have no fence separating our yards, so I walked over, shook his hand and listened to him tell his story.
Isn’t that amazing!
Sure, we just shared our names and where we were from. Big whoop. We didn’t sit down for a Bible study. He didn’t ask me a profound theological question. I don’t even think he heard me when I told him I was a pastor.
But none of that matters.
One of the most remarkable aspects of discipleship is how God can transform moments that are seemingly small into milestones.
I believe in a God that loves my neighbor;
I believe in a God who can change my neighbor’s life;
I believe in a God that can use a 'surface’ level introduction to begin doing amazing things.
Maybe you are like most and you don’t know how to begin discipling someone. Keep this in mind: discipleship does not always look like larger than life moments where we break through the heart of an unbeliever and see them fully surrender their lives to Jesus.
No, many times discipleship is about embracing the long game.
My reminder of this was after I walked away from the brief conversation with my neighbor. I continued to my yard work, which at that time all that was left was spreading out new seed for some patches in my lawn.
Here I was taking out handfuls of seed and gently spreading them along the ground.
Only a few things will help the seeds grow: diligence, patience, and love.