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The check for seven dollars and forty-three cents was no good and the manager was quietly saying she could not buy her baby food here. The clerk quickly set the groceries aside, closed her account and began to ring up my purchase.
She should manage her money better! I tried to convince myself while leaving the store. Shes probably an alcoholic or a drug addict. But my flimsy excuses would not erase the picture in my mind of a grocery basket filled only with jars of baby food.
There are no acceptable excuses.|
Every day, all of us receive opportunities to help someone in need. Our light shines when we use those God-given opportunities to witness our faith by reaching out and getting involved. There is nothing dramatic about these day-to-day encounters, but they emphatically tell the world what kind of Christians we really are.
At this point, I want to finish the story by writing how I approached the manager and offered to pay for the purchase of the baby food. It was the right thing to do. I dont have much money, but I can afford seven dollars and forty-three cents. Instead, hiding my light under a bowl, I turned my head and walked away. There are no acceptable excuses. I had a great opportunity to help someone and walked away. Next time, I will do better. God has taught me a valuable lesson today.
What we believe as Christians only works if we turn our faith into action. How about you? How many opportunities have you missed to let your light shine and instead hid it under a bowl? The next time you are in a check-out line at your local grocery store, instead of worrying about your schedule, look around you. Maybe God will give you the opportunity to help someone who needs seven dollars and forty-three cents to buy some baby food. Please, in the name of God, let your light shine and give them a helping hand.
|Afterword: Larrys open sharing reminds me of a term we use at Westover, goober. Weve learned that some our best lessons are learned when the Lord convicts us about our goobers"a goober is our affectionate term for our sins for which we are deeply sorry that God has used to teach us lessons that will ultimately make us better disciples. Im beginning work on a book with several other folks called Goobering our Way to Heaven. While we can fill it with our own goobers, wed love to have stories about your goobers and how God has used them to make you a better person. If youd be willing to share one, send it to email@example.com with the subject listed as Goober. Well even change the names to protect the goobering if youd like. Thank God for grace and the Holy Spirit so we dont have to stay where weve blown it, but can confess our sin and let God make us better people.|
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Article Copyright 1998, by Larry Davies from Sowing Seeds of Faith, an email newsletter that shares "Messages of Hope in a World Gone Bonkers." Used by permission.
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