“But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.” – 1 Corinthians 12:24-26
I had a neat interaction with my doctor’s wife a few days ago. She works at the front desk in his office and does all his scheduling. They have two preschool children, a business, active in church, i.e. a lot going on.
As I stood waiting to make my next appointment, I could see she was having a hard day. Spontaneously, she looked at me in a frustrated way and said, “Why can’t I get my life together? I just can’t seem to get it all done and get away from the chaos. You look like you have it all under control. How do you do it?”
At this point I could have given her some tips on being more efficient, finding peace in the chaos, or simplifying her life. But instead I decided to be real. I walked around the desk and opened my purse so she could get a peak inside. Upon seeing it, she howled in laughter and said, “That makes me feel better.”
As much as I hate to admit it, I don’t have it all together. The fact is, I struggle to get through the day just as much as any working mom. The awful contents of my purse testify to this. Crumpled up debit card receipts, a lipstick tube with no top, a mashed up energy bar, and roughly 15 pieces of gum that escaped their container lined the bottom of my survival bag. And those are just the things I am not too ashamed to tell you about. At one point, she even asked, “What is that? It looks sticky.” Sadly, I couldn’t answer right off hand. This is the state of my life right now.
The point of the story is this. I am a child of grace. I only get through this day and this life by the grace of God, not my own strength. And when I encounter others with struggles, I have a choice. I can pretend that I don’t have their kind of problems. Or I can be honest and let them see that I do struggle as well. And when I do this, something great happens. They feel better about themselves and sometimes I even get to tell them about the grace of God. It opens up a door for witness when they see that we have something in common. It’s awesome!
As we prepare together to encounter people with all kinds of struggles at the Magic City Miracle, I would encourage you to begin praying about those you are going to meet. Ask God to prepare your heart and provide you ahead of time with responses that will minister to people and build them up. Believe me, the blessing will be yours.
How gracious You are to me. Without Your unending supply of grace, where would I be? As I prepare to serve the least of these in Your kingdom, fill me with Your Holy Spirit. Lead me to see all others as children of grace too. Help me to share the good news that all things can be made new in You. Help me to be an encourager, and a hope-filled witness. Let me not think too highly of myself, for I can accomplish nothing without You. Use me as an instrument of blessing in all circumstances.
May You be glorified in all that I do and say.
In the name of my Savior I pray,