Stay Hungry & Humble

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Life

A Compliment From A Homeless Woman

The best compliment I have ever received came from a homeless woman.  At the time, I did not appreciate her words as I do now.  Recently, God reminded me of this seemingly “forgettable” interaction that happened years ago, and I now cherish her kind words.  Let me set the stage for you….I was in my early-20’s, had just graduated from college, and had begun my new career in Abilene, Texas.  During my previous college years, I had tested boundaries and strayed away from my relationship with God.  I was raised in a Christian home, and that foundation was deep in my heart, but the newfound independence was a drastic change for this small town girl.  I had gotten into the party scene, and I held my relationship with God at a distance.  (Thank goodness God never lets go of us even though we may stray from Him!)  Anyway, I had moved to Abilene for my first professional job as a social worker.  God led me to a wonderful church, and I was at “home” and joyfully reunited with Him.

One day, I was running errands (well, I was actually shopping) and had ventured into a part of town I was not very familiar with.  As I found my destination, I made my way to the empty parking lot and began to get out of my car.  Out of no where, I saw a frail, seemingly homeless, woman approaching me.  I was slightly alarmed as I had not noticed her when I arrived, and she was approaching me rather quickly.  She asked me for money.

Let me pause here….whenever someone asks for money, I always ask God if/what I should give.  Many people have opinions about whether or not you should give money to the homeless or poverty stricken for various reasons and perceived stereotypes.  As Christians, I find this a simple task of obedience.  After all, if I obey God and give as he instructs, then I have done my part.  God says, ” Give generously to the poor, not grudgingly, for the Lord your God will bless you in everything you do.” Deuteronomy 15:10.

I searched for cash and quickly handed over what I felt led to give.  I do not remember how much I had or how much I gave her, in fact, this interaction was quiet and short-lived.  She was thankful, and we parted ways.  But then, as I was walking away, she said, “You love Jesus don’t you?”.  I turned around, surprised to see she was still standing near my car.  I did not know what to say except a simple, “Yes I do.” She turned and walked away, and so did I.

What an amazing moment that could have been easily missed or forgotten! What a wonderful God we serve that His love is identified in a simple act of giving.  And what an amazing compliment to know that God’s love is evident in our lives through acts of kindness and obedience, no words needed! I simply cannot imagine a higher compliment than being recognized as “loving Jesus” by complete strangers.  I am not perfect, I make many mistakes.  But even through my mistakes and imperfections, I pray that I will always be seen as someone who loves Jesus.  There is a song by Hawk Nelson entitled “Words,” that states, “I don’t want to say a word unless it points the world back to You.” Let’s try to take that a step further with our actions.  Actions speak louder than words, right?

Prayer: Lord, I know that I am not perfect and I forgive me when I do not act with grace and love.  Help me to become more like you giving love and grace to others through my words and actions.  Help me to be a blessing to all I meet today.  Amen

3 Comment

  1. Thank you for sharing Holly. I am stopping over after receiving your Twitter follow notification. Thank you so much.

    This is a very beautiful interaction. Like yourself I do pray for guidance when approached by a homeless person for guidance. How touching that the lady saw Christ within you.

    On a side note I must say “what a small world we live in”, when you mentioned Hawk Nelson. They are a local band from my area in Canada now known Internationally on the Christian scene. I can’t remember the exact connection, but current lead singer Jonathon Steingard is somehow related to one of the ladies from church. They have not forgotten their roots, I have personally seen them locally perform live 6 times. The song “Words” is such a powerful song..

    Blessings! 🙂

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