Part 2 from the Wooden Shoe!
For the past few weeks I have found myself in Randy’s* room, one of the residents of the Wooden Shoe Motel. Randy struggles with addictions, but I found his room to be a place of peace. During my first visit to his room I heard all about his childhood and looked at two framed pictures of himself growing up.
As I looked at the two multiple opening matted pictures, he abruptly asked me, “Mike why are you here?” As I shared with him the heart of his Abba Father, I ended by saying, “Randy I just want to know how I can pray for you.” As I said those words Randy quickly approached me and grabbed my hand and shoulder tightly. I was not sure what was happening and definitely could not have predicted the outcome even if I was given multiple opportunities.
As He squeezed my hand tightly and looked deep into my eyes he said, “Father, I thank you for Mike, for bringing him here … and Jesus, I thank you for saving me.” As he finished his prayer, I offered mine, but honestly I was overwhelmed by my encounter with Jesus.
As he released his grip on my hand he continued to look deeply in my eyes as he said,” Mike, it has been a long time since I prayed with someone, thank you.” What a gift my Father gave me as He broke through Randy’s addiction bringing us both into His presence where we experienced His joy because we have the same hope found through love in action in Romans 12: 12-13
Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.
The next week we were meeting again and he began to open up about his struggle with alcoholism. He looked at me and said, “Mike, I have been drinking… I have my problems, but I believe Mike… I believe.” I told him that I already knew both these things – not only that he had been drinking, but also that he believed. No sooner had I finished my sentence than my son came by and said, “Dad we are going to pray as a group in the community room… Randy, you want to come?”
Without saying a word, Randy got up, found his walker and followed my son. As we stood there in our circle holding hands Randy broke the silence with the song, “Be still and know…” What followed this was a peaceful time of prayer in the midst of much pain and brokenness. As we finished I went to Randy and thanked him for coming. He looked deep into my eyes and said, “Mike, this was church!”
And it was church. Once again as we came to serve and bring shalom to the chaos, Jesus was already there, blessing both those being served as well as the ones who served them. Be on the lookout for where you will experience church this week.