Friday, October 16, 2015

Why Your Words {And Your Story} Are So Important

She greeted me with a warm smile, like we were old friends, even though I barely knew her. Impulsively, I hugged her as I came through her door. She showed me around her lovely home: her cute kitchen with the pop of turquoise paint, her barn wood floors, a beautiful table here, a handcrafted shelf there, all built by her husband. I could tell she loved her home the same way she loved people. I was instantly glad I came.

She offered me homemade peach cobbler drizzled with cream and a hot cup of tea. We ate and chatted. I had a lot on my mind and heart. I was feeling pulled in different directions with my writing and public speaking, and I felt a little lost. I longed to talk to someone who has traveled the road before me. I needed advice. I needed the wisdom from a woman ahead of me in life.

I had thought to ask if she would meet me out for coffee, then dismissed it. Surely, this woman had better things to do. She is busy with her grandkids, her professional life, her personal life – she doesn’t need me to creep in on her time. Still, wouldn’t it be nice to meet with her? I would love to know her thoughts.

So in a moment of bravery, I asked her if she would ever want to join me for coffee. But, what she offered was even better. She invited me over to her house. She made me treats. She made me feel like she had been waiting for me. She gave me such great advice. I needed to hear her words, her story, her wisdom….

The lovely evening ended, and I climbed in my car and began my drive home. The floodgate of tears opened. Tears of relief. I had prayed for direction, peace, wisdom, and comfort, and God had given me all of that through this beautiful woman.

This woman was the hands and feet of Jesus for me.

I think that was God’s intention. He created us to need each other.
“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”(I Thessalonians 5:11)
“Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.”(Hebrews 10:24)

It's such a beautiful thing. And I am not above asking for help. I know who to go to for encouragement. I know where to find wisdom. I know who will wrap their arms around me and love me. I know who will speak hard truths into my life. I know God uses the wise, honest, loving, and godly people in my life to speak to me. And I am not afraid to find those people and go there with them.

I know that people and relationships can be hard. But people can also be amazing. This shouldn’t be surprising, because we are created in His image. (So cool.) And we get to choose to follow Jesus. And the Holy Spirit comes and lives in us, which means that His truths, His wisdom, and His love is inside of us at all times. (Unbelievable.) And then we get to share this with each other. (Just awesome.)

And if you think your story, your encouragement, and the words God has pressed upon your heart are not needed and important, think again.

Because what if the lovely women who invited me into her home and spoke wisdom and direction into my life had been too busy or dismissed me? Her couch became a safe haven. The steamy cup of tea was therapy. The warm food fed my soul. The welcoming atmosphere allowed me to be vulnerable and honest. Her story spoke wisdom. Her advice gave me peace and assurance for my next steps in life. A small amount of her time made a big impact on me. I needed her words. I needed her encouragement. I needed her.

Because that is how God created us…

To need each other.

To make an impact.

To be the hands and feet of Jesus.
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