Christian life

The Lord Will Give You the Words

conversation over coffee
Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

Ever regret chances you had to witness for the Lord but didn’t? Me too. But one day I was proud of myself. (And I have to credit the International Conference on Missions [ICOM] for the fact that I was so tuned in that day. That’s what ICOM does for you!) I hope this little testimony gives you good ideas.

The conference had ended, and several of us had gone for lunch at the food court in a nearby mall. I stood in front of the Chinese restaurant counter. Suddenly a young man (maybe 14 or 15?) was at my side, asking for money for food.

It was nearly 1:30, so I asked, “Oh, haven’t you had lunch?” He said no. But I also noticed that the restaurant clerk was giving me the eye, frowning and warning me off. She was no doubt signaling that this wasn’t legit, that the kid pulled this all the time. I’d already guessed that.

But I suddenly saw it as an opportunity to pay for five minutes with this young man. So I said, “I’ll buy your lunch.” We stood at the counter and ordered two entrees. He wanted a Coke with his meal, but I said, “No, that’s an extravagance. We’ll have water.” The clerk was fuming, slamming things.

Help me, Lord, I prayed silently. Then I turned to the kid and said, “You know, this is odd. Men are supposed to help ladies. But you’re a man asking a lady for help. That’s odd.”

He didn’t reply.

While the clerk took her sweet time, I asked the young man, “Where’s your church?”

He instantly spit out the name of a local church. Ah, I thought. He probably goes to youth group just for the free pizza. Conning them like he’s conning me.

Then I could see that the clerk almost had our orders ready. What else can I do?

I took a deep breath, turned to face him full on, and said, “Look, I don’t know what kind of home you have. Bad dad, no dad … But if you’re going to church, you know that God will be your Father, that he can handle anything. But you need to do what he says.”

He said nothing. Took his tray and went to sit with his buddies. I rejoined my group.

About 15 minutes later, there he was—standing right beside me and looking real sheepish. With his head hanging, he quietly mumbled, “Thanks for my lunch.”

“Well, that’s all right. What’s your name?”

When he told me, I motioned to indicate all the gals sitting with me. It was a very international group: one from Japan, one from Africa, one from the Philippines … every color! “You see this?” I said. “These are totally scary girls for God, from all over the world. They’re gonna be praying for you!”

At that, he couldn’t hold back a chuckle. I gave him a big smile and he left.

I think about that young man from time to time and wonder what the Lord has done with him in answer to our “scary” prayers.

And the cool thing is, someday I’ll know.


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