Being Present

April 29, 2002
by Kenn Stright

Luke 2:49 – Why did you have to look for me? Didn't you know that I had to be in my Father's house? (TEV)

Every Tuesday, I spend five hours sitting outside in the shade of the Better Hope Church, before going out into the community to visit church members. We advertise my presence in the church building as widely as possible. Better Hope Church is beside the busiest highway in Guyana. Sitting outside really isn't the most comfortable place to be, but everyone knows I am here, and everyone can see that "the Pastor is in".

The result?

A woman came from Mahaica (almost an hour away) just to talk about her involvement in her church, where she was asked to preach during the Sunday service. The result of the visit was a sermon we created together during the morning as other people came and went through the church.

A young man came and he was desperate for a job, but even more desperate to talk to someone, anyone, about where his life was heading.

A middle-aged man came to tell the pastor that his wife was cheating on him and to ask what he should do. A few minutes of serious conversation was all it took for him to come to the realization that he had cheated on his wife many times in their marriage. So, what could he do, and what could they do together, to build a life together, or would they decide to go their separate ways?

Young people came by to talk about their studies and what they hope to do with their lives. A couple of seniors just stopped to talk to someone who isn't in a hurry.

We can be like Christ to others by being present with them day by day and making ourselves ready to listen to them, when they need someone who will take the time to be a good listener.

Prayer: Help us to be present for your people in the needs they carry with them day by day. Help us to be present, attentive, and ever so ready to listen, in Jesus' name and in Jesus' service. Amen.

About the author:

Kenn Stright <kennethstright@yahoo.ca>
West Petpeswick, Nova Scotia, Canada

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