I was waiting at a diner for a girlfriend when I spotted a young man, maybe seventeen years old, staring at a glass of water on the table in front of him.
More than giving him a cursory glance, I was compelled to pay attention to him. As I watched him, I distinctly thought, Buy his meal.
But I stalled.
I didn’t want to embarrass him or grandstand.
I moved so he wasn’t in my line of sight, but the thought to buy his meal persisted. And still I resisted.
You are probably shaking your head right now.
How obvious, right? God was speaking! I know, I know. I see it now too, but hindsight has no fear.
The young man left before I took action.
I missed it.
I maybe could have made that young man feel like someone cared. That he was seen and that he was loved.
But I missed it.
We’ve all ignored it.
That little nudge from the Holy Spirit to go, or do, or say, or help.
The nudge is so subtle, it’s easy to dismiss as unimportant . . . or ignore if it’s inconvenient . . . or disregard if it creates an awkward moment.
When have you missed it?
Maybe it was the homeless guy on the side of the road. You were nudged to give a little money, but you talked yourself out of it, because, well, ugh, he’d probably just use it for liquor anyway.
Or maybe you got the nudge to check in on a friend, but you were really busy, and she’s such a talker, so you told yourself you’d call later.
We’ve all missed it—the opportunity to love like Jesus loves and do as Jesus did.
We get scared or worried about how it will look or what it will cost, and we miss the opportunity.
But when you look back, you feel regret. You wonder, Why didn’t I go or say or do or help?
Good news for all of us
Here’s the good news: You will undoubtedly get another chance to love as Jesus does and do as Jesus did.
Next time, don’t make it harder than it needs to be. God equips those he calls to do what he asks—or nudges—us to do.
There is a medical term I learned from my nursing friend. Potentiate. Potentiate is when two drugs are taken together and one of them intensifies or accelerates or enhances the effectiveness of the other drug.
A spiritual application is that the God-given gift or talent or experience or resource you already have potentiates the love of God to others.
God wants to demonstrate his love to all his people. What did he put in you to potentiate that love?
- Are you a woman of prayer? Do you pray without hesitation and with full conviction that you have the ear of God?
- Are you a teacher? Can you teach others to cook or sew or pray or balance a checkbook or read the Bible?
- Are you a good listener? Do you look a talker in the eye and resist the urge to check your phone or look over their shoulder for a more interesting person?
- Are you an encourager? Most women are encouragers, but maybe you take it to the next level.
- Do you send cards just because?
- Are you a master of catching people doing something right and pointing it out?
You may not be able to fix, save, serve, or support everyone, but you can love like Jesus loves, and you can act on the nudge with the gifts, talents, life experiences, and resources you have.
And when you do, you’ll be blessed with no regret.
Have you experienced a nudge lately?
Leave me comment sharing if you said “yes” to it…or if you’re now aware you need to.
“Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” —1 Peter 4:10
O Lord, I want to love as Jesus loves and do as Jesus did. Help me be tuned in and brave. Make your nudge obvious, and then give me the courage to take action. In Jesus’ name, amen.