This past week I was honored to give a devotional to a group of young people volunteering with Habitat for Humanity. I have been doing this for three years now, including this year. I love the idea of getting to know these people and having the opportunity to thank them for using their Spring Break time to help out others. It truly is a form of these young people being the heart, hands, and feet of Jesus Christ.
This year, I had the date on my calendar for when I was asked to come and deliver the devotion. I also had it down as a task on my reminder list so I would remember to prepare one. The date I had been assigned was Wednesday, March 7th. On Tuesday, March 6th as I lay my head on my pillow to retire for the night, it hit me. I had not prepared a devotion. Mind you, I had to be on site at 8am the next morning ready to go. There was not time in the morning to put anything together. I thought to myself, “get up and go do it”. However, next thing I remember, is my alarm going off the next morning.
I felt my only resource was to get one that had done in previous years. After all, the group was different, they would not have heard the one I did last year. Even with that bit of fancy rationalization, I still felt dirty. I felt horrible at the idea of delivering a devotion from a previous year, whether they had heard it or not. But, time was short so I pulled it up on my computer, printed it out, and headed out the door. The whole way there I had a pit in my stomach.
At 7:55 A.M., I pulled up to the site and did not see any cars. So I got out my phone and pulled up the email to check the particulars and make sure I was in the right place at the right time. I was. But I kept reading the email. At the bottom was a brief line about what they were requesting during the devotion time: Prayer leadership and Scripture reading (relating to building God's Kingdom, being the hands and feet or Jesus, etc.) or an inspirational story. Or an inspirational story. As soon as I read those words, thoughts began to flood my head. A story was brought to my mind. That is what I would share! By this time people had begun to arrive. So I folded up last year's devotion, shoved it in my pocket, and joined the group. The devotion went well; we prayed, they ate and listened, and I spoke. After it was done I was over talking with the director about how things were going for Habitat and I noticed another director walked over. She introduced herself, asked if my name was Daryl, and when I answered affirmatively, she said, “You're the pastor at Druid Hills!” I was amazed that after seeing me once, 365 days ago, for about 10 minutes, she remembered who I was. But what came next, buckled my knees. She said, “You spoke about the rocks and the importance of building God's Kingdom last year didn't you?” My heart stopped. She was right. I did not remember her, but she remembered me, and what I spoke about! The exact script I had in my pocket!
I wrapped up my time and started making my way back to my car. But as soon as I was out of ear shot I began praying and thanking God. Thanking God for giving me a new word, thanking God that His words last year made an impact, and thanking God for being with me in that time. God is good! I told Him, “I do not know how you do it, I do not care how you do it, I am just so thankful that you do do it!” Hebrews 13:5 tell us, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” Just as God was with me that Wednesday morning, God will always be with you. So my encouragement for you this week, is be open. Listen. Pay attention. God is there, eager to help, eager to be involved. God will never leave you and in that you can be certain!
Have a great week and I will see you all on Sunday!