Wayne Weekly “A Hoping Heart for Helping Hands”
Written by Wayne Taylor on April 10, 2018
A short time ago while at a local Wegman’s grocery store I once again spotted a familiar figure, a man I’ll call Don. Don is one of those Helping Hands employees that round up shopping carts. I had seen this fellow a good number of times before that day as I sometimes stop at that store to pick up items for my wife and family.
But today was different.
Today, I strongly sensed that the Holy Spirit was urging me to reach out to Don regarding spiritual issues. I had tried to build a nominal friendly acquaintance relationship over the past year or so. Don is one of those that you might call unlovely.
I know little about him, only that Don is the type of guy that most people “just don’t acknowledge much”. He tends to mutter to himself, looks a bit un-kept, and presents himself as one who may have emotional issues. His appearance would not put him on the front cover of GQ magazine. I think you get the gist.
God had been speaking to me about reaching out to Don for a while. I was not really that excited about making the contact, but as time progressed my heart became heavy over Helping Hands.
“Hi, Don”, I said, as I read his name tag and walked up to him purposely trying to look pleasant (I wondered if this man had remembered me greeting him from afar a number of times in the past). Don looked up, momentarily taking his eyes off the train of shopping carts he was pushing. “Don”, I said, “God loves you and I am inviting you to my church Sunday morning.” His response was far from enthusiastic, but it was not an angry one either. I also expressed to Don that I guessed he has had a difficult life, and the Lord knows that and wants him to draw near to Him. Helping Hands then told me that he used to listen to Billy Graham on his smart phone. I told Don I thought that was great, and invited him to church. He said he would come. I gave him the address and told him I would be looking for him.
That Sunday I sat in expectation that Don would come walking through the church doors. I imagined my greeting him and sitting next to him. I imagined him responding positively to the message of the gospel and even raising his hand for salvation.
None of that happened. Don never showed.
I saw Helping Hands later that week in the store parking lot. “Don, I missed you!”, I said. He replied that he had gone to the wrong church and ended up at a former Episcopalian Church. That church had closed its doors a number of years ago and now was used for a bunch of weird things. I believed Don because that building was just down the street from my church.
I asked my friend to visit the next Sunday and clarified where my church was. He said he would try to come. I looked for him this past Sunday. He was sure to pass through the doors at any moment.
Don did not come. I was disappointed, even sad, but am determined to have a hoping heart for Helping Hands.
Luke 19:10 – For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.