Author - Laura King
I felt Him tug on my heart before I was even what you call "good and awake". I sat up on the edge of the bed and felt this urge to spend some of my day volunteering in the Storehouse Pantry. The thought hadn't even finished processing before I told God how much I had to do at the office and I brushed it off and went about my morning routine.
Thoughts of the day ahead of me flooded my mind as I went through a mental check list of what needed to get done while I fumbled with my keys at the office door. I began to hear footsteps behind me getting closer. I turned and saw one of my favorite clients from the Pantry.
I smiled and asked her how she was doing. She managed a smile and said things were tough. She looked exhausted and stressed. Thinner than I remember her, shoulders slumped...she is one of our senior clients and what we call a " walker", meaning she doesn't have transportation so she walks several blocks to the pantry.
We talked for a few minutes, she told me that she had just lost her Mom as tears welled in her eyes. My mind raced back to the evening before when I held a picture of my Mother and myself in my hands. I totally understand the pain that was beginning to trail down her cheeks. I asked if I could give her a hug and asked God to bless her and touch her heart. She clung to me and said " thank you for hugging someone like me, i really needed that".
"Someone like her"...I stared into her eyes and saw myself. I saw the same pain and brokenness that so often meets me in the mirror. "Someone like her"...
She asked my if she had to have an ID to shop, she had forgotten it when she left her apartment on foot. " No, go get checked in..they will take care of you" I replied. She said " thank you" as she grabbed my hands. I told her that I loved her as she turned towards the Storehouse.
I am thankful for God's gentleness with me even when I am often not very gentle with Him. I chose to brush Him off this morning and instead of chastising me, He sent a gentle message in the form of my friend. I wasn't about to ignore Him a second time. I dropped my stuff of in the office and headed to find Mike to see if they could use a little help at the Storehouse.
God knows what we need and exactly when we need it. My purpose in the Pantry this morning had nothing to do with me helping and everything to do with God loving on me because i am...I am "someone like her". I was tired, overwhelmed and exhausted just like she was. Our minds both racing as to how we could make things work, yet knowing that in and of ourselves we were going to fall short. Our life circumstances in many ways are different but our spiritual needs are the same. We needed God to show up and love on us this morning and He did. i experienced Jesus in every volunteer and client I came into contact with. Hugs, smiles, joy, prayer, tears, love.
So many broken hearts come to this campus. They come in beat down, feeling unworthy, feeling like they are less than and tired of fighting the daily battles of survival. They come searching to have a physical need met and God does this miraculous thing of meeting them where they are and speaking life into them. He meets all of us broken people that way...right where we are...because no matter if our clothes are tattered or nice, we have a vehicle or are afoot, young or old, healthy or weak, hungry or full, orphaned or not, we are all "someone like her.