As I stepped out of bed this morning, my heart was heavy laden. I had so much
to do, and so little time to do it all. I had places to go and my cash was very
low. I was hungry because I did not eat the day before and there was no food to
be found in my home. I really could use a little help today.
So I got down on my knees and thanked the Lord above for another day. I asked
Him if He would please show me the way and give me the time today to accomplish
all that I needed to do. I asked for money to fill my gas tank and food to fill
my stomach. I knew that all things are possible with God.
Walking from my house to the car, I noticed Mr. Jones, my elderly neighbor, outside
struggling to start the engine of his lawn mower. Having much experience at what he
was going through, I walked over to him and offered him a hand. After only a couple
tries, the mower started and a huge smile came upon the neighbor's face. He reached
into his back pocket and opened his wallet, took out a $5 bill and said, "Please
take this. You don't know how much aggravation you saved me from." "I can't take
that," I replied. "After all, that's what friends are for, right?" With an embarrassed
look, he placed the bill back inside his wallet.
We talked for a few minutes, and then Mr. Jones kindly offered, "Hey, why don't you
come inside and have a cup of coffee with me this morning? The little wife just
finished baking some fresh cinnamon rolls and she made the finest coffee I've ever
had this morning." "I'd love to, really I would, but I've got so much to do today.
I don't know how on earth I'll ever get it all done."
I named only a few of my many chores for this day. I had to go to the library to
return some books. I needed to go to the dump to dispose of some trash. I needed
to drop of a job application to a company in town. And I needed to take a prescription
to the drugstore. With an excited look on his face, Mr. Jones kindly offered, "Why
don't you let me help you out? I've got to go to several of those places myself. I'll
be glad to help you." "I really can't burden you with my chores, Mr. Jones," I replied.
"But I sure do thank you for the offer!" "No problem," he replied, gently nodding his
head as if he were disappointed.
As I got into my car, I prayed I would make it to my destination without running out
of gas. Traveling down the road, I could not help but think of all the things I must
do today and time seemed to be running out. Trying to keep my eyes on the road, I
fumbled in my purse hoping to find a loose dollar or two. My stomach ached from hunger
pangs. And for some reason, I could not seem to shake the memory of Mr. Jones' look
each time I refused his kind offers of help.
Returning home late in the afternoon with a completely empty gas tank and a completely
empty stomach, I was exhausted. Even though I accomplished what I needed to, my heart
felt heavier than when I started the day out. Mentally, physically, and emotionally
drained, I headed off to bed. As I lay in bed that night, I felt too exhausted to
pray, and sleep seemed determined to remain a stranger to me.
As I lay quietly in my bed, I heard a soft voice say, "My beloved child, I know your
heart is heavy. The heaviness you're feeling is the grief you have caused my Spirit
today. You see, I heard your prayer first thing this morning and I immediately started
to work on it. I have tried to bless you all day long but you have refused to open your
heart to receive it. It was I who reminded the neighbor of all the places he needed to
go today just so that he could lend you a hand, and you refused my help. I was the reason
the lawn mower would not start. Knowing that you could not walk by him without helping
him, I did it so that I could reward you for your gift of help with money for your gas
tank, and you refused my gift again. Knowing that you were hungry and how much you love
cinnamon rolls and coffee, it was I who ordered Mrs. Jones to prepare that for you, and
you refused that, too. I don't know where you were expecting my help to come from but I
sent it from the most obvious place of all - right outside your own door. Please remember
from now on that all things happen for a reason, and you are that reason. You were the
reason I sent my Son, Jesus, to die for you. And if I would give you my best, my very
own Son, surely I will meet all your other needs. No matter who you were yesterday, who
you are today, or who you will be tomorrow, I will always love you. I loved you yesterday,
I love you today, and I will love you tomorrow. And to spend eternity with you so that
these problems will be no more, I'd do it all over again ... just for you."
Feeling very loved but sad that I had placed so little trust in the Lord, I asked His
forgiveness for overlooking His blessing. My final request for the day was that He give
me a good night's rest and pray for new mercy tomorrow to keep my eyes open for His
blessing. For this rest, I will trust in the Lord and will not waver in my faith.
By Linda Johnson