Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Bobby : Chronicles of the Pilgrims

Chronicles of Pilgrims 

I sat in the sauna at 24 hour fitness last Wednesday afternoon, quietly immersed in thought over a new book I picked up recently called Praying For Strangers by an amazing author named River Jordan. This book, breathed a fresh air into me, that I've been praying about for a few months. I've felt the gifts I have too insignificant, lacking crazy holy fire kinda passion. I love talking to people. I loved it more when I was a non-believer & have wondered where my place in the Kingdom lies & how/if this gift can be glorifying to God.

The book is literally the simple concept & story of a woman who was  lead by God to pray for a stranger a day; a resolution she sort of fell into. As I have been reading this book, Gods expanding my mind again & pulling on my heart about the power of Love between strangers (who, really, are not really strangers) One word that comes to mind instead, is a pilgrim (a foreigner, travelling wanderer). Realizing, we are all wanderers; looking for a home. I've made the best of friends with these pilgrims (as one myself!) through smiles, through a genuine "Thank you" or a simple conversation while waiting in line at Starbucks. I've asked God again and again as I've wondered what my part is here; how I can do it for His glory. I've battled and battled to figure it out; leaving me useless & sidelined instead.
Until Bobby.

I resolved I would pray for a stranger a day too & wondered what God could show me through something seemingly so simple. Truthfully, I hadn't been seeking out a "person" who pulled on my heart for well over a week after I bought the book. As I was sitting in the sauna & selfishly checking out of life for a moment, a voice piped out of nowhere breaking that awkward-sauna-silence, " Whatcha readin over there eh?" I looked up to see a slightly overweight middle aged man, sweaty, and inquisitive about my book. It was him. My stranger. 

I kept that part to myself and vowed to listen and be invested in our conversation w/out an agenda. 
I told him the premise of the book and we began to make small talk from our love of great literature, to how we both came about living in San Diego, to how he knew angels had been following him & watching over him his entire life. I don't quite remember the exact story of his angel, but I told him that God has clearly never left him & then lovely awkward silence that followed a man who feels he may not be the best candidate of the care of the Creator of the universe... crept into the room. I know none of us are perfect, but I also know God made man in His likeness; clearly. So just before he walked out, I blurted, probably with a little too big of a smile, " So you're my stranger!" He looked stunned. (I mean, what did he expect?:) He was a perfectly good stranger to pray for! I asked him if he needed prayer for anything specific. Flustered still, he managed to mumble with a nervous laugh, " Um, well, um, I don't know! What do YOU think?" My thought was basically,for Heavens sake, you got nothin!? But I said, "Well then, I will just pray God brings lots of joy & laughter & protection to you &tonight, I will say an extra prayer just for you." He looked down & it was as if I could hear every thought in his heart. The undeserving thoughts of lowliness, the grateful thought of a simple idea that someone would," say a prayer for me?. We said our goodbyes and the room & all the other people in it suddenly faded back into my peripheral. I said to God, as my eyes welled with tears of thankfulness that God sets up divine appointments with fellow pilgrims of all race, gender, status, & background, that if this was my part; to love the wanderers the best I could, my answer is, " Help me be more aware &YES, Lord, I will."  & if they ask why I do it, I will say, "Because Jesus did it for me." "For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost." Luke 19:10
Send me, I'll go, Isaiah 6:8

1 comment:

  1. Valerie, I stumbled upon this today. Very inspiring, I love your words and your writing. Makes me feel like i'm right there.