This morning I traveled to Raleigh, North Carolina to sit with a family while their family member was having surgery. Since I became a lead pastor two and half years ago, I ‘ve spent numerous mornings navigating the halls of hospitals. However, this morning something happened that has NEVER happened before. I went to the information desk to ensure I was at the right hospital (yeah, I went to the wrong hospital last week) and instead of the lady writing the directions on hospital sticky-notes, she said, “let me just take you there.” Timeout: I’m not sure if she decided this because A. I looked confused, B. She was just a really nice lady. It was probably both! Still, this simple act of service influenced my hospital experience in three major ways.
- It Gave Me Confidence – I was with someone who knew where they were going.
- It Gave Me Peace – I did not have to worry about finding the way on my own.
- It Gave Me Appreciation – I will never forget this lady because she took time to help me.
This whole situation reminds me of the beginning of Jesus’ ministry. As Jesus began calling his first followers, there was one man, Philip, which was so captivated by Jesus from Nazareth that he went to get his friend, Nathanael. He tells him in John 1:45, “We have found him of whom Moses in the Law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” The skeptic Nathanael responds, “Can anything good come from Nazareth?” Philip, however is not put-off by his doubt or even upset by his mockery, he simply says, “come and see.” He then takes his friend to meet Jesus; a meeting that would radically transform his life.
We all have friends, family, and neighbors that need to experience the love, grace, and forgiveness of Jesus Christ. Nevertheless, visiting churches, like hospitals, is often intimidating and scary. Who in your life would benefit from you “taking” them to an opportunity to encounter Christ, rather than “telling” them where they should go? It may result in a life-changing event or conversation that they would never forget.
My prayer is that this would help you grow in your love for Christ, His Church and His Mission.