He’s my Friend!
It was back to the mall for me today, but I wasn’t alone. Today a friend joined me to pray for those who might need some extra TLC this Christmas. This is the best kind of shopping ever! We “shopped” for people as we walked along, looking for opportunities to share the love of Jesus. It was an amazing time! In Luke 10:1 it says, “The Lord now chose seventy-two other disciples and sent them on ahead in pairs to all the towns and villages he planned to visit.” Verse eight goes on to say, “If a town welcomes you, eat whatever is set before you and heal the sick. As you heal them, say, ‘The Kingdom of God is near you now.’” Well, we ate a delicious taco lunch in the mall, and saw some people get relief from their pain, both physical and emotional. It seems many long for that personal touch. I heard this last Sunday in church that, “Being people of mercy is the only thing that will separate us from the world.”
I have to say the highlight of my day at the mall was an elderly gentleman with a cane. We had a short conversation with him and we asked him if he knew Jesus. He joyfully replied, “He’s my Friend!” He was as tickled to tell us that as we were to hear it. Another young woman we talked to had a special request when we asked her if she needed prayer. She didn’t know what to get for the men in her family—her dad and her brothers. Since my friend and I each raised three boys, that was right up our alley. We had some suggestions for her, which she gladly welcomed, along with a prayer, and then we were on our way. We became familiar with a few of the people working in the kiosks, as we strolled back and forth quite a few times. We prayed for one young man’s tired feet, and another young woman to experience God’s provision as a single mom of two. You may think this is a bit out there. Believe me, we understand. This is not something we normally do. But it is such a blessing, that we plan on doing it more in the future.
In 1 Timothy 2:1 it says, “I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. As you make your requests, plead for God’s mercy upon them.” On Sunday it was said, “Mercy is compassion in action. It will cost something, but it alters someone’s future.” Today didn’t cost us a fortune in dollars, that’s not the kind of shopping we were doing. But it did cost us some time as we searched for those in need. We found that when we take that time for our fellowman, it can help relieve stress to weary bodies and souls—not only theirs, but ours as well. We left the mall encouraged by Jesus’ love.
Searching And Noticing the Divine in a mall may seem strange. But Jesus was born in a strange place…a stable. Some of us may end up in a strange place this Christmas, or our circumstances may not be what we would choose—but I hope we can all say, “Jesus is my Friend!” Jesus came to this earth full of mercy, wanting nothing more than to give us all the personal touch of His love and forgiveness. That is His gift to us. We only need open up our hearts and receive it. Jesus is the reason for the season for a reason!