"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths." Proverbs 3:5-6
Do you struggle with trusting the Holy Spirit?
Do you often ignore the nudges the Lord gives you?
When the Lord asks us to do something we have two options: we can either run like Jonah or obey like Jesus.
I'll be the first to admit that I am more like Jonah.
I LOVE God and I want to obey Him ALL the time, but often fear gets the best of me and I flee instead.
Can you relate?
Has the Lord ever asked you to do something and you wanted to obey but fear or anxiety got the best of you?
If you struggle with trusting and obeying the promptings of the Holy Spirit than this story is for you!
Not too long ago the Lord put me in a situation that was scary, uncomfortable, and confusing all at the same time.
When He spoke, I had moments to choose between fleeing the scene or obeying.
Trust me, my flesh wanted to flee.
However, this story is a small example of what God can do and what God wants to do when we simply say YES and TRUST HIM...
Last fall while driving home, I got stuck in a traffic jam.
An old man in a wheelchair was going .0001 miles per hour across the crosswalk and dozens of drivers (including myself) were sitting idly in their cars and watching this poor man struggle to get across the intersection.
There were four cars in front of me and as I watched this little old man painfully inch his way across the road I wondered how long this would take and why no one had helped him yet.
"Why isn't anyone helping this man? Why is everyone just sitting around watching him?" I thought to myself.
As I watched him struggle I got increasingly irritated that no one was doing anything. That's when the Lord firmly and abruptly said to me, "Kristin, YOU need to get out and help him!"
"Me?" I thought to myself.
Fear washed over me the moment the Lord placed this on my heart because I had all three of my young children with me in the car.
In fact, the LAST thing I wanted to do was to get out of the car leave them by themselves.
As I wrestled with the Lord's command, I desperately looked for a safe place to pull over and park my car.
However, because of the traffic jam, there wasn't any open space.
Time was ticking. God was waiting, and I had a choice to make.
I took a deep breath, threw my car into park, and decided to trust the Lord.
I told the kids not to move a muscle and I put the hazard lights on moments before I jumped out and sprinted past cars to get to the old man.
When I reached him I let him know that I was there to help him and I briskly wheeled him across the street to safety.
Once we were on the sidewalk he told me that he needed directions to Walgreens.
It was only a few blocks away but at his pace, it would take him hours.
I felt bad that I couldn't help him more but since my car was parked in the middle of the street and traffic was now flowing I had to quickly give him directions.
After pointing him in the right direction I darted rapidly back through traffic to reach my car.
Deep relief and gratitude washed over me once I saw that my kids were OK.
I thanked Jesus for watching over them and continued my drive home.
However, as I drove away from the traffic jam, the most peculiar feeling washed over me.
For some reason, the further away I got from the man in the wheelchair (Fred) the more dreadful I felt.
I prayed and asked God why I was feeling this way and the Holy Spirit said, "Kristin, you must go get him! Do NOT leave him!"
Once I got home I told my husband what happened and how I was feeling.
He encouraged me to listen to the Holy Spirit and go back and help him.
The moment he did I raced back as fast as my legs would carry me and when I reached Fred he was only 12 inches from where I had left him.
I asked him if I could help him once again and when he said yes, "you can take me to Walgreens" I started wheeling him in that direction.
As we walked and talking I discovered that he had "run away" from a medical care facility near my house and that he wasn't even supposed to be out and about!
Horror washed over me when I realized the reality of the situation.
A thousand thoughts flooded my mind all at once when I learned why the Lord had insisted I go back for him. "What if I hadn't listened to the Lord and stopped to help him? What would've happened to him?" I thought to myself.
Suddenly, I felt deeply grateful I had listened to the Lord...but, I almost didn't.
As we walked I thought about what I should do next and I decided that I would take him to Walgreens ONLY if he agreed to let me take him back to the nursing home as soon as we were finished.
He agreed, so off we went to Walgreens.
I had no idea at the time that this was a divine appointment, and that the Lord had bigger plans than simply getting Fred across the crosswalk safely.
After shopping, we made our way back to the care facility.
As I wheeled him along the sidewalk I felt the atmosphere start to change.
I felt prompted to tell him that meeting him in the crosswalk was no accident. That the Lord had arranged it all and that it was a divine appointment.
As I spoke these words I felt God's presence and love begin to pour over Fred and anoint our entire conversation.
Before I knew it, the Lord blew open the doors to Fred's heart and he heard and received the GOOD NEWS of Jesus.
I honestly could not believe what was happening.
What started off as a stressful traffic jam was turning into something beautiful and soul-saving.
When we got to the nursing home I wheeled him back to his room on the second floor.
On my way out, I stopped at the nurses' desk and asked them if there were any patients who never get visitors.
They all paused for a moment and then collectively said, "most people here never get visitors."
My heart sank like a 1000 pound weight when I heard them say that.
I paused for a moment and timidly asked if it was OK if I came back to visit them?
They all looked at each other and then agreed that that would be OK!
Friends, it's been a few months since I met Fred and I have been back to visit him numerous times.
I am honestly in AW of the doors the Lord continues to open when I am there.
Each time I go back He increases the number of people I can talk to and reach.
For instance, a few weekends ago I met two new women (Judy and Lyn) who have lived there for 7 and 11 years respectively.
Originally, I thought this was simply a place where older people go to recover after surgery.
Now that I have visited a few times I realize it's most patient's last stop.
In fact, the hallways are literally lined with people waiting to die...people who don't know Jesus!
The last time I was there I saw dozens of people with the look of utter despair and hopelessness in their eyes.
I felt overwhelmed by the depth of their sadness.
However, PRAISE BE TO OUR FATHER IN HEAVEN who has now opened the doors for His people to change that!
After my last visit, God put it on my heart to invite others to join me in this mission field.
Since then, the list of people who want to go with me to love people to life in this place grows continually!
I never imagined that one small act of obedience could turn into an entire ministry!
God used a traffic-jam to open the door to a treasure trove of unsaved souls.
Jesus meets us right where we are with love and simply asks us to trust and obey Him.
It sounds simple, but often it's really challenging...
Friend, can you relate?
Are you struggling to truly trust God?
The day I met Fred my flesh wanted to stay in the safety of my car and protect my children.
My flesh hated the idea of leaving them to go and help Fred.
But God's Spirit said, "Go help him. Trust me."
The longer I walk with Jesus, the more I understand that when we CHOOSE to trust Him and walk by FAITH, He allows us to walk on water.
Moments when His JOY, His PEACE, and His LOVE pour out into us and onto others.
We miss those moments when we say, "no."
Friend, if you've been withholding a part of yourself from the Lord, today is the day to wholeheartedly say YES to JESUS!
I promise you won't regret it!
He ALONE is worthy of it ALL!