It was during our final evening church service that I received a text from a friend: “Hey! Can we hang out after church tonight?” It was a casual text. One friend just wanting another friend to spend time with them. My initial reaction was to think about how exhausted I was from working all day. “I always make time for others,” I thought. “Maybe this one night I could take time to rest at home.” I chose not to answer the text message right away, since it was the middle of the service and I still had a long night ahead of me.
At the end of the service, another friend told me that I should check on the one that sent the text message because they were in a very vulnerable place right now. I immediately thought, “What! I was thinking of not going. How could I do that when this was a time they needed me the most.” I was ashamed of my initial thoughts to blow off being with her that night.
I texted my friend back immediately. Later that night on the way to a restaurant she began to share the doubts and concerns she felt about her salvation. In the parking lot of the restaurant that night, in the pouring rain, I had the opportunity to lead her to Christ.
This experience has never left me and has had a profound impact on how I choose to spend my time, energy, and effort. That night I could have chosen not to spend time with my friend, and maybe she could have been saved another time. But what I always remember is the shame I felt about not choosing to make the effort to spend time with her. I would have never known what she was feeling if I hadn’t been prompted by my other friend.
We may never know the impact of our decisions on this side of heaven. So while I’m here, I’ll always choose to be available to the Holy Spirit using me.
“And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here I am! Send me.” Isaiah 6:8
This verse has become an anthem of my life. A reminder of the calling God places on each of us. It has become a common response in any situation where I feel the Holy Spirit prompting me to do something that I say, “Here I am, Lord, send me!”
God works in each of us to do his will on earth and it is our job to be available to his promptings and guidance. To me this means putting myself in a position every single day to allow God to use me whether it’s at the grocery store, the bank, or the office. It means I need to make the effort to interact with people. I am compelled to go to a regular line at the grocery store instead of self check-out or interact with a teller at the bank instead of going to the ATM.
There are people around us every day searching for something more, and you may be the one that God uses to show them his love and grace. So the question is, are you available to him?
“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.” John 14:26