Recently, I made a trip to my favorite park by the river for a little time with Jesus. Boats sprinkled the harbor, schools of fish leaped in unison from the surface as if to be playing peek-a-boo and an older gentlemen sat on a bench to my right as he gazed at the soothing scenery.
As I sat eating my Chic-fil-a wrap with a million things on my mind, I began to pray, praise and ponder my ministry, messages and the many women the Lord has given me the privilege sharing His hope with.
I love the joy of sharing Jesus with women and to be honest, it rocks my Bible study world when the group is large! So many wonderful women, yet so many hurting hearts. I remember hearing a quote by Ruth Bell Graham which seems to echo in my heart every time I speak…
“In every pew sits a broken heart.”
My prayer was focused on the larger audience. The group of women I had never met, yet had been the object of my prayers for quite some time. I already loved them and couldn’t wait to put faces to my prayers.
As I gathered my things to go home I noticed a smaller crowd to my right. A crowd of one.
That elderly gentleman was still staring out over the water. He didn’t look upset – in fact he sort of had a smile on his face. But as I passed him by, smiled and talked about the silly fish that had just made another appearance above the surface, I knew I was supposed to say something to him.
After that split second wrestling match with the Lord, I knew I had to be obedient and risk sounding like I was crazy. And so I turned back, looked at him and said…
“I’m not sure why, but the Lord wants me to tell you He loves you and He still has a plan for your life.”
As he looked up I noticed tears beginning to well up in his eyes. He stuttered for a minute and said, “I don’t know how you knew, but I REALLY needed to know that right now.”
When I arrived at the park my mind was fixed on the big things…big ministries…big tasks…big crowds, but God had a crowd of one sitting right in front of my face.
Would my heart be so fixed on the big that I completely missed the small?
How often we see Jesus pursuing the greater call yet never missing the small!
- In a crowd full of people one small woman touched the hem of His garment and she was made whole. (Matthew 9:19-22)
- As Jesus entered a synagogue He didn’t skip over the needs of the man with a withered hand on His way to speak to the crowds. That man wasn’t an interruption to Christ’s mission, He was part of His ministry. (Matthew 12:9-14)
- In Christ’s journey to His ultimate earthly work (the cross), He stopped long enough to stoop down and wash His disciple’s feet leaving them an example of true leadership and humility. (John 13:12-16)
As a speaker, it’s easy to get caught up in the masses – it’s easy to be preoccupied with ministry, messages and the many women we have the responsibility and privilege to share with, yet Jesus calls us to notice the broken heart in the pew…or the sweet, elderly gentleman on the bench in the park. Every eternal difference is equally eternal. So dream big, but do small.