Too Focused on My Own Things

The doorbell rang. I sighed heavily after my kids peeked through the blinds and announced who was at the door.

“Kristen” (not her real name) is a neighbor girl who, for the past 3 years, has come to our door asking for a ride to school whenever she misses the school bus. The first year it happened only a couple times. The second year it happened maybe a few more than that, but this year….Well, this year it has happened frequently…..too frequently.

Yes, I sighed when they said it was Kristen….and then I proceeded to just ignore the doorbell. She needed to learn to get up on time, right? She needed to learn the consequences. She had to learn she couldn’t always fall back on me whenever she missed the bus…..If she were my child, I’d want her to learn the consequences, right? Besides, I didn’t have the time. I needed to be doing school with my own kids.

Another day Kristen came to the door, and I answered and told her I was in the middle of something and couldn’t take her. I saw the disappointment in her eyes as I shut the door. I felt a twinge of guilt, but I pushed it away as I went on with my scheduled day.

Fast forward to yet another day, and the doorbell rang. It was Kristen…..again. I wasn’t in the middle of doing something, so I decided to go ahead and be the nice neighbor and take 10 minutes of my time to take her to school. On the way, we talked like we usually do, but this time I caught a glimpse into her family life….not exactly the happiest. She explained, “My dad was going to wake me up, but he drank last night.”

I felt a stab of guilt….Hmmm…maybe it wasn’t my job to be the mom that teaches her a lesson. Maybe instead I needed to be the one person in her life who demonstrates Christ’s love to her.

“My dad was going to wake me up, but he drank last night.”

A few days later while having my devotions, I read a note by Matthew Henry that said that we can minister wherever God puts us. Hmmm….didn’t God put me right in this neighborhood? Hadn’t I been praying for a long time that God would give me a divine appointment? I thought God wasn’t answering my prayer. Actually, he had brought the divine appointment right to my door – many times! I, however, had not even recognized it as such……in fact, I had even ignored it and shut the door in its face! Ouch!

I had been so selfish and so focused on my time and my agenda. It was really only about 10 minutes of my time. Ten minutes!

Kristen’s name is now on my prayer list, and I’ve taken her to school a few more times. She hasn’t come to the door recently, but I’m praying I will have more chances to reach out to her, to show her Christ’s love, and to even invite her to a youth activity at our church.

Oh, to be like Christ Jesus….to not be so wrapped up in self and looking on my own things, but instead on the things of others (Philippians 2:4-5). I want to see the people – the people needing Christ around me. I don’t want to miss another divine appointment God sends my way.

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