Even though we all want to help, we all can't go to the destruction sites. Some people are not able due to work situations. Some are not able due to health situations. Others have the gift to give a donation. Yet again, some people help by collecting donations. Either way, we know one thing we can always do is pray.
However this sounds, this is how I felt. I just didn't think that I could go to one of the destruction sites. I do have a health issue as well. Mainly, I thought I would just sit among the rubble and break down in tears. In my mind, I was perfectly happy to just give money or bring some items to the church. I was speaking to one of our members on the disaster relief team. I mentioned giving us a time and date for a drop off at the church. They then emailed me and asked, "Can you do it? Can you supervise a drop off?" God uses different people for all kinds of things. For this, I just didn't feel like I had a specific task; but I told them I would. I didn't have any close family or friends who were impacted. I had so many friends who had such a passion for this project. I just didn't feel "needed" or the "right one."
Before we had our drop off, I sent a text to a few of my neighbors. I told them that if they had anything, they could bring it to me and I would take it to the church. This is where the story gets interesting! My friend and neighbor Angie sent me a text. She told me she had a donation for me, but she needed to bring it down. There was an explanation to go along with the donation. I was extremely curious after this conversation.This is just so out of character for her. Angie is my tough, hard working, bike riding chick, who doesn't take nothing off of nobody! She also welcomes anyone at anytime into her home. She and her family would literally give you the shirt off of their back if you needed it. I love her and her family very much.
Angie comes to the house, and I don't see anything in her hands. She wants me to sit down. She has a story to tell me. (I'm usually the one telling a story or just a running my mouth, while she sits politely, then says, get to the point lady!) Angie is a manager at Taco Bell. A district CEO had scheduled a mandatory meeting with her and other managers to discuss upcoming events, product, quality etc. This one CEO is an extraordinary man. Angie said this is not the first time he has done something like this. He starts telling his crew about a reporter who had gone to Africa to do a story on this great doctor. When he arrived, he asked the local interpreter to take him to this doctor. The native man kept taking him to different places; a library, a school a hospital, but no doctor. Finally, the native took the reporter to a grave. Before he took him there, he wanted that reporter to see the impact the doctor had on their region while he was alive. With that said, the CEO passed out these envelopes to each of the managers. Inside, each person was given the same amount of money, wrapped in a piece of paper that simply said, "Be A Blessing."
She said, "I have had this envelope in my car for a week. I didn't know what I was going to do with it. Then I saw your text about the drop off. I want you to take this and use it." I was in such shock! After she left, I looked up to God and smiled. I knew why I needed to do a drop off. I thanked Him for this blessing.
Angie had told me she really felt that the money should go to a person or family. The Christian Service Mission had been open everyday, 7 days a week. They said they would be open. I then got word that they would close the Sunday I was doing the drop off. It was Mother's Day. Well, now what was I going to do? I just knew God had this plan. I would drop our donations off, the clouds would part, and the sun would shine down on some person or family who needed this money. They would be happy, I would be happy, Angie would be happy...right? Wrong! That's not how it worked that day.
As I was sitting there, taking donations, I noticed this man that I had seen the previous Wednesday. He didn't necessarily look like a bum, but you could tell something was wrong. For some reason, he lingered beside me at the site, before he got in his car. A voice told me, "Give the money to him." But, in my mind, God had this plan, and it was to go to a tornado victim. So, he left and I said nothing. I thought, well someone who is in need will see our sign and come up to the church. Then I will give them this money, because this was "God's plan"...nope.
I left that day and had no idea what I was going to do. I wanted Angie to be lifted up. I wanted to lift God up in praise. What do I do? I kept thinking about that guy. One of our members at church, John Green, had spoken to the guy. I sent John a message on facebook, and asked what the guy's story was. John proceeded to tell me that the guy had lost his job. He was living out of his car, and was staying in the Walmart parking lot. Well, I felt like a big ol' piece of poo after hearing that! I told Angie the guy's story and asked her if she cared if I gave the guy the money. She didn't care. She just wanted to bless someone. Here's the hard part: I didn't know if he was going to come back to our church!!
I prayed the next couple of days. I asked God that if he was meant to have that money, please have him come to church so I could give it to him. I also asked God to forgive me for not listening in the first place. Wednesday came, the envelope in my purse, and there he was!! Not only was he there but walked right into my class! I walked over to him before class started. He looked startled. I said, "I'm supposed to give you this." Then, I sat back down.
When church was over, he came up to me and thanked me. I didn't know if he would, and it didn't matter. I found out that he had worked for 20 years with a security company. He had an accident that required therapy and a lot of time off. When he came back, another company had taken over and he didn't have a job. I asked him about disability. He said his lawyer had tried, but it was denied, and then he got better so he didn't pursue it any further. He told me he was trying to get back to family in Chattanooga and needed gas money. We were finished talking and he said, "I'm sorry, you told me you were supposed to give me this money. That you were sent to me. Who did you say that was?" He probably wanted to go thank them. I looked at him and said, "God told me to give it to you." He had a funny look on his face and left. I haven't seen him since. I know there was enough there to give him gas to get to Chattanooga. I hope he got there.
I told Angie the story. She was so happy! I thanked her for letting me be a part of her testimony. I felt blessed to see some one's faithfulness, and watch God take that to glorify His kingdom. God will bless Angie for her act of obedience. In this, I learned that I don't know why I'm supposed to do things or be a part of programs or activities sometimes. But, God knows. He has a plan. His plan is greater than anything I could ever come up with.
Isaiah 55:8, 9
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
The Lord answered, "Who then is the faithful and wise manager, whom the master puts in charge of his servants to give them their food allowance at the proper time? (God sent me to this verse when I prayed for a verse for Angie. God is so cool.)