by Michelle Eigemann
A middle aged man made his way through the parking lot of a busy grocery store asking for help. Each time he was turned down he thanked the individual, wished them a Merry Christmas and walked away with the look of defeat deeply defined in the lines on his face.
He walked over to me and began to tell his story yet again only to hear the dreaded words “I’m sorry, I wish I could help you but I don’t have any cash.” He thanked me, wished me a Merry Christmas and walked away. As I opened the door of my car I felt a conviction weigh heavy on my heart as I began to think about what it truly means to be part of the body of Christ.
My response to him, although sincere, was birthed out of a heart problem. Peace was not present in my heart at the time instead I was filled with worry over the recent death of my cell phone. I was stressed because I’m only going to receive one pay check before Christmas which will likely hinder the amount of gifts I’ll be able to buy. I was frustrated because I was at the second store attempting to rent the one movie both my kids agreed on only to have it be out of stock. I may have heard this man’s need but I certainly wasn’t listening.
I re-parked my car and went to find this man whose name I discovered was Scott. I talked with him and really listened to his need. I apologized for not fully hearing him the first time and for allowing my own personal (and trivial) issues to hinder my desire to serve. After speaking with Scott for about 10 minutes I determined that I was able to meet one of his needs but little did he know that he met a greater need within me.
As Scott and I prayed together I was overcome with emotion as I thought about how I almost missed out on the phenomenal blessing of peace that was given to me through this encounter. I watched as the look of defeat etched into the lines on his face gave way to a huge smile. I saw another person being validated, cared for and loved. His story was eerily similar to my own and possibly similar to yours as well.
He is a man born into a sinful and broken world, surrounded by trials that threaten to knock him down, yet he stands firm but not by his own accord. He stands on the promises that God will provide for all of his needs. A promise I had allowed to slip away from me as I became engulfed in my current circumstances.
“Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts,
since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful”
Colossians 3:15 NIV
How can we as believers allow peace to rule in our hearts?
We can start by taking a survey of the current condition of our heart. What are we allowing to reside there? Is it frustration, resentment, bitterness or strife? If so then it’s necessary to begin to extract those damaging emotions and replace them with peace, contentment, Joy and thanksgiving. The best way to reverse the damaging effects of a heart problem is by giving, serving, and loving others exactly where they are.
It is my prayer that peace would rule in each of your hearts today. That the peace of Christ would fill you up and call you into action. That together as one body we could meet the needs of those around us.
There is no better way to forget about self than offering up an attitude of selflessness. This may not mean that you give money to every person who asks but if you take the time to talk to them you may just discover that they have a need you can meet. I’d be willing to bet that the return rate on your investment will be far greater than you ever expected.
Michelle Eigemann is a single mom of two teenagers who have taught her how to live life to the fullest, love fearlessly and laugh out loud (especially at herself). She currently resides in Michigan and holds a Bachelors in Social Work from Spring Arbor University.
Michelle is a blogger at Ordinary Mom, extraordinary mission where she invites others to join her on her journey of single parenting as she shares her trials and triumphs of raising an adult child with special needs. Her passion is to educate others, advocate for her son and encourage her sisters in Christ to walk humbly through the beautiful lives they’ve been given. Her mantra for life is “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy” Proverbs 31-8-9 (NIV)
Connect with Michelle at
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/allmichelleking/
Twitter – @MichelleEigemann
Email – firstname.lastname@example.org
Website – www.allmichelleking.com