The Plate that Taught a Lesson

I have a confession. I can be a bit “over the top” when it comes to Christmas. As in our family’s Christmas cards were addressed and ready to go in August and our trees were up on November 1st. (I’ll pause for you to laugh and assure you it’s completely okay; I won’t be offended.)

Whether I’m baking cookies or out looking at Christmas lights my heart is at home in the season of Christmas.  I’ve already set dates on my calendar and checked it twice, because I don’t want to miss a minute of the season. I can easily get caught up in the wonder of Christmas; therefore, I must intentionally remember the why of Christmas. And, that’s where God has me today, recalling a moment I missed from Christmas past, that sadly, I’ll never get back.

It was Christmas day. The final touches had been made on our family dinner.  We each filled our plates, gathered around the table, prayed a prayer of thanks and began to feast. That’s when I heard God whisper, “take Jenny a plate.” Jenny was my neighbor who was a widow and lived alone.God's Prompting

Internally, I began a conversation with God that went something like this: “Are your sure God?” “What if she doesn’t receive me warmly?” “What if she’s diabetic and my food has too much sugar?” As I munched on my food, my excuses continued and God simply replied, “Take Jenny a plate.” In the end, I weighed my uneasiness and stayed home.

The next day I drove past Jenny’s house and felt a pit in my stomach. I knew I had been disobedient, and I’d have to wait until next Christmas to make good on God’s invitation.

That summer Jenny passed away.  How I wish I would have strapped on my shoes, made the short walk across the yard and delivered the food. What opportunity had I missed? A smile? A conversation? Or maybe the love of God crossing from my kitchen to a lost heart through a plate of food?

I’m certain God’s whisper that Christmas day wasn’t about the plate of food.  More than likely it was about a widow who needed to know someone cared about her. More than likely it was my Savior wanting to pour His love into a heart, and I sold out the opportunity for my own comfort.

My heart breaks for leaving Jenny alone that day, but I learned a lesson: God’s prompting to reach out to someone is an earthly mission with a heavenly purpose.

Friends, this Christmas if you sense God prompting you to reach out to someone, even if it takes you to the edge of your comfort zone, remember he’s sending you on an earthly mission with a heavenly purpose.

If you hesitate you may get a second chance, but like me, you may not.

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