It was a normal Monday, or so I thought.
I was headed to Starbucks because I needed to get some work done. But when I reached the set of lights that indicated whether I should drive to the “turn left” Starbucks or head to the “go straight” one, something told me to turn left. Normally I work at the “go straight” location, but this time “turn left” was calling. So I turned left.
20 minutes later it made sense.
As I walked around the shop looking for a cozy spot to land, I questioned my poor judgment. Honestly, there was no place to sit. The only seat available was sandwiched — and I mean squissssshhhhhhed — between two tables of four grown men. Not that I’m opposed to working in tight quarters, but this wasn’t the “cozy” I had in mind. I would literally be working shoulder-to-shoulder beside two burly men. Yikes.
As I sat down and began unpacking my computer, I couldn’t help but overhear one guy telling the other guy about God. My ears perked up.
James (learned his name later) was saying that everything changed for him and his faith when he learned to see God as a friend to move in relationship with rather than an authoritative figure trying to control his life – that faith has everything to do with being with Christ rather than doing things for Him.
What James was saying resonated so deeply with similarity to my own faith journey that I couldn’t help but let out a big ol’ amen. Next thing you know I’m having a cool conversation with complete strangers about how God moves, orchestrates and aligns our lives in such interesting ways if we’re paying attention. Before long I was crying, they were crying (two grown men!), and we were praying together right then and there in the middle of Starbucks. This has never happened to me before, but you know what? It was such a moving experience because that’s what God does.
Life is made up of moments like this when our faith is available for moments like this.
When you live for the world, you see everything and everyone through a lens of comfort. You ask questions like …
- What’s in it for me?
- When’s it my turn?
- Where can I be happy?
- How I can get something out of this?
Case in point, the seating. Ugh. To be sandwiched between two big burly men is not exactly my style nor my idea of comfort. For real. It kinda smelled like a hockey locker room.
But when you’re living for the bigger picture and a bigger purpose, you see everything and everyone through a lens of Christ. You can’t help but follow the nudges.
- What would You have me say?
- When would You have me go?
- Where would You have me lead?
- How would You have me to move?
Even when you find yourself sandwiched between life’s circumstances and shoulder-to-shoulder with difficulty and uncertainty, God has the ability to make even a rock and a hard place comfortable, because that’s His style. That’s His idea of comfort.
What we deem intimidating situations, God reveals Himself in gentle and kind ways.
When we think we should “go straight,” God nudges us to “turn left” even when and if it doesn’t make sense.
When the shops of our lives are packed, and we’re not sure where to sit, and we don’t know where to land, and we can’t seem to find a seat, He reveals Himself in beautiful ways — even through the company of strangers — if we choose to live for the bigger picture and the bigger purpose.
We’re not here for us. We’re here for Him. If we choose to live this way.
To live this way is to live a life made up of moments like this because God is all about moments like this.
So there I was, crawling out of bed, bright and early in the morning, thinking it would be a normal Monday.
But God had other plans.