Are you more of a talker or a doer?
What questions do you most want to ask God?
When have you found an unmet need when and where you least expected it?
I was at a women’s event, talking with a friend in the foyer during a midday main session. No one was expected to arrive so late, so my friend and I were surprised when a woman walked through the door. Her name was Olga. She was looking for a cup of coffee. There was a coffee shop in the building, but it was closed for the day. Since we had coffee prepared for the event, sharing a cup of coffee was no problem. Other than looking for a coffee shop, Olga knew nothing about where she was. She began to ask questions about the purpose of the building and our event. As it turned out, she was new to the area and had some needs that available specific ministries could address. After talking for a while, I asked for her contact information, and she left.
Unless we know the need, we can’t meet it. We have to ask questions. Sometimes we don’t ask direct questions. Sometimes the person in need doesn’t even know the need. How can we? We can interact. Listen. There are often unexpressed, even unidentified, needs just under the surface.
A sip of coffee didn’t fix Olga’s longing for healthy community of support and accountability, but it was a start. We did what we could. She got a cup of coffee for free, plus a conversation. In that moment, her needs were met beyond expectations. That’s what happens when we ask questions of others and ourselves. We don’t have all the answers. It’s okay when all the pieces don’t fit as we think they should. We might be able to help another person with one piece of her puzzle and someone else helps with another piece. Likewise, many people in our lives help us with our needs—both identifying and meeting them.
Ask the questions. Trust God for the answers.
Look for someone to help today. Don’t help them on your own terms and timing. Help them on theirs. Keep it simple. Even the smallest acts of service and kindness impact people’s lives in big ways.