Have you ever had one of those moments when you are so glad you didn’t say something you were just about to say? It’s like the Holy Spirit puts His hand over your mouth and stops you.
I did just the other day.
It was a simple phone conversation. I was making a hotel reservation. Only something was off. I deal with this particular chain of hotels a great deal, and they always have helpful and competent operators. This gal, however, was slow, unsure and kept making mistakes. I have to be honest; I got annoyed. As we were concluding our reservation she erred again, and this time it was crucial. I was irritated, and just as I was about to become snippy, Pastor’s sermons on love and patience marched through my mind. So I took a deep breath, and tried to keep a check on my tone as I questioned the incorrect information.
Then it happened.
With a tremor in her voice she said, “I’m sorry Ma’am. I shouldn’t even be here at work today. I just can’t focus. My dad just passed away and my family is fighting about the things he put in my name. I am so upset.” She began to sob.
That’s the moment.
The moment I hung my head in shame for what I almost did. Thank you Jesus for stopping me!
I spent the next few minutes listening to her and empathizing with her as she told me, a faceless stranger, her heartache and confusion. Mustering up my courage, I told her I was glad she got my call, and believed it was providential. Then I asked her if I could pray for her. Gratefully, she welcomed it warmly.
What was a routine, ordinary phone call became an opportunity to share the love of Jesus with a woman who was hurting on the other side of the nation. I still shudder when I think how close I was to, not just missing the moment, but shattering the moment with a snippy and impatient attitude.
“Love is patient. Love is kind…it is not rude.” 1 Corinthians 13:4
We all have days when we hurting and barely keeping it together, when we need a little patience and kindness… when we need love. I pray the next time you are irritated with someone the Holy Spirit puts His hand over your mouth and keeps you from damaging your opportunity to share God’s love with someone who’s probably hurting.
Remember… Love Above All!