The other day I was walking home for lunch. I was running late so was in a bit of a rush. I passed a group of people having a BBQ on the pavement in front of their house. We exchanged glances, and brief greetings and I walked on by. Then I had a pang of conscience.
Recently, I had been thinking how I sometimes get these little nudges in moments just like this; I feel like I should say something to the person but I chicken out or make excuses to myself about how I don’t have the time or the energy to talk. As I walked on I realised I was doing it again. Again I was telling myself I didn’t have time to stop and chat – Anna would be wondering where I’d got to. But still my conscience wouldn’t give me peace.
As I walked on, feeling bad, I suddenly realised that I’d forgotten something (as it happens, it was my car – long story!). So I had to turn around and walk back right past the BBQ again. Kicking myself for being forgetful and annoyed at having to walk back in the midday heat, I was also thankful to the Lord that I’d have a second chance to say something to those people.
As I neared the BBQ again, I explained my prompt reappearance saying that I’d forgotten something.
“What did you forget?”
They found this hilarious! I think because I was walking they thought I’d just cracked a joke. Sadly, my wit is not that quick and I tried to explain to them that I really had forgotten my car.
They were soon offering me a taste of the food on their BBQ and showing me their sunburn from being in the sun all day! It was a group of men and women with a couple of small children and a dog. I tried to place people in family relationships but as it turned out they all live together in a house share, the house we were standing in front of.
We had a brief chat punctuated by much laughter and an occasional attempt at English. Soon someone was taking photos of me surrounded by these men as if we were long time buddies.
I’d actually seen them having a BBQ there last summer and had a much briefer exchange. This time the whole conversation was probably only about 5 minutes and now I’m friends on Facebook with a whole new group of people who live closer to church than we do!
- Please pray that we would not have seared consciences but would love and obey the LORD and the people around us.
- Pray that we would make the most of every opportunity to reach out to people.
- Pray that these people would come to church someday and come to know Jesus as their Lord and Saviour.