Random acts of kindness.
Intentional reminders of God’s love
So many thoughts are running through my mind right now, I will try to organize them to get my point across! My point…God is real and is at work around us, we just have to be willing to engage Him. We have to want Him to be a part of our life; He is not going to force himself on us. But wow, when you ask God to be a part of your life and you watch for Him to show up, He ALWAYS does.
This is how God showed up this time.
I use the word “random” because people understand
what I am talking about BUT I do not really believe in
“randomness”, I believe that God goes ahead of us
preparing for us to be a part of His game plan!!
INTENSIONAL Reminders to others of God’s love.
Our small group decided to do some “random” acts of kindness for a service project. Twelve of us showed up to Salsarita’s to eat together and to decide exactly what we wanted to do. Ten sophomore girls, Lindsay and myself, I laid out an envelope for the girls to put money in if they wanted to contribute financially and then we would decide what we could do based on how much money was collected. While we ate, talked and laughed we decided that we would write some encouragement notes to two types of people: someone from our student ministry and a stranger that would be the recipient of a gift card from Meijer. The girls wrote beautiful notes! (There really isn’t any thing better than a hand written note of encouragement) So we counted the money, $175…. off we went to purchase SEVEN $25 gift cards (as I am writing this I am reminded that the number seven is a significant number to God, of course He gave us enough money to buy 7 gift cards).
The girls went into Meijer two by two, looking for just the right person to engage in conversation. The right person, yes, the person that God had already determined would get a hand written note of encouragement and a $25 gift card! At first it looked like there weren’t too many people there, but then all of sudden all the right people appeared. A handicapped lady who was shopping with her nurse caregiver, a stressed out mom with three little kids, a women who had one item in cart, a family who struck up a conversation with some of our girls and family that had two little boys who were crying and wanted to go home and woman with her daughter. The women with her daughter was just looking at clothes minding her own business when two of our girls struck up a conversation with the two of them.
Each one of these stories has God in it some where, we may never know how that simple card affected someone’s life; maybe no one ever gave them something for nothing, maybe they never had someone give them a hand written note of encouragement, maybe they never had a stranger want to talk to them or smile at them. Only God really knows how hearts were affected that rainy Wednesday night in Rochester Hills, but I do know that the prayers of some sophomore girls were heard and God used them to show His love, they were His hands His feet and they spoke His words.
So back to the un-expecting women with her daughter, they were given a note, gift card and were engaged in conversation. I happen to walk past them as the conversation was ending and the little girl had a huge smile on her face while her and her mom were discussing what just happened!
We went back to the bus and as some of us waited for the others, two girls from our group were walking a mom and her kids to their car and helping her put her purchases in her car!!!
We spent a few minutes sharing stories from the night and then went home. As I was thinking about the night and how blessed I am to be a part of the lives of such exceptional young women, I re-capped the evening in my Facebook status. Within minutes God gave all of us a real dose of the reality of His being, below is the status and comment from a friend:
Ten sophomore girls/two leaders….20 notes of encouragement….Seven $25 gift cards to Meijer….leads to at least 30 unexpected blessings all in less than 2 hours!!! God’s love makes people do crazy things…. like walk up to a perfect stranger and engage them in conversation purely to give them a gift and see a smile come across their face!!! I love my life!
Comment from my facebook friend: “Thanks for doing that! My step-sister-in-law was one of the recipients and was talking about it on FB. It meant so much to her! When she posted the website and I saw it was Woodside, I got the chance to invite her and she wants to come on Sunday! (Has to talk to hubby first, but she believes in "signs" and is really excited!”)
After being blown away once again by God’s creativity and timing I chatted with my friend a little more and couldn’t wait to share this story with our small group. What I love most about God is that He knows (and is ok with) the fact that as humans we sometimes need immediate gratification, so in order for us to see and believe that He is truly at work sometimes He allows us to know right away how the small acts of kindness that we participate in are used for His glory. It’s possible that these small acts of kindness, which really took little effort, can have a life long outcome, but more importantly the possibility of an outcome resulting in an eternity with God. WHO really knows what the words written by the sophomore girls of WBC meant to the heart of a perfect stranger?
These are the details that can be shared publicly, but there are more behind the scene details that God has so beautifully orchestrated, someday those details will be shared…all in God’s perfect timing. The results of these “random” acts of kindness did not only touch the hearts of those who received a gift but the hearts of those who wrote the words and gave the money for them. It’s all God’s plan for us who choose to be a part; God makes a way for us to give what we have to be used for His ultimate goodness.
My life has become so much more exciting since I decided to let God be a real part of it. Is He real? Yep. I see examples of His realness everyday. Seriously, not a day has gone by in the last year, which is when I really started watching, that I have not seen at least one proof of God’s presence.
Random act of kindness
Intentional reminder of God’s love