I wish I could be a better sharer of my faith with others. Some people seem to have a natural inclination or higher comfort level inviting people to church or talking about faith matters. Me…no. Awkward…very much. I say dumb things.
At the UPS store today getting some paperwork notarized for my parents; I happened to be wearing a hoodie with my church’s logo on it. Somehow the second UPS employee (I’ll call him Tom) recognized the name and he asked if we were a Korean church. I said we were affiliated until this year but we have moved to a new location recently. I wondered how he knew and if he was Korean. He said “yes.”
That was something we had in common and we all chuckled about him struggling to unlock the bathroom door. It felt easy to ease into a conversation. I asked, “Do you go to church?” What I meant to ask was if he was a Christian or something much more refined. This could be divine appointment; maybe Tom needed some encouragement or a nudge to think about faith matters. I could be that person.
In the meantime, I signed, organized the mailing with the notary person. When I turned around to see what my kiddos were doing, it was normal shenanigans.
Comparing whose scalp smelled worse. What the heck?!
He used to go to church only for hanging out with friends and playing sports: in his words, “for all the wrong reasons.” He doesn’t want to start going to church because he’s not ready to give up his lifestyle. I’m not sure what he meant by that, because we all have lifestyles we struggle to give up but can’t or won’t. That wasn’t going to stop me from asking again.
Plus, I didn’t think those were wrong reasons; lots of people come to church to meet friends and check out the community. Then I said the dumb thing: “we’re not mean people.” Stop there. What is wrong with me?
My intention was to share that God wants us to come as we are. We can never clean ourselves up or live a lifestyle that is perfect and holy. I meant empathy through my idiotic comment. I wasn’t ready either but showing up was the start of my Jesus journey. Like many pastors say, the church is a hospital; for those hurting, broken, and wounded.
He chuckled at my comment. I hope he knew what I meant to say. After processing my payment, I waved goodbye: “Tom, nice chatting with you. Take care.” He looked shock that I said his name even though the name tag was on his shirt.
Walking back to the car, I asked the kids their opinion about “we are not mean people.” They wholeheartedly agreed it was dumb. (ugh, pure honesty sucks in times like this).
We prayed for Tom and asked that that conversation will have some goodness for Tom. Maybe jotting down our church’s website or other online Sunday services would’ve been helpful.
The conversation in the car was lively and full of teasing. It was a candid talk about how not to share faith like that and to be prepared for next time. But we all agreed God can make good things happen even through blunders.
Thankfully God is in the business of working with imperfect people and bringing good out of imperfect situations.
Categories: Random Thoughts
Welcome to my blog! My name is Esther and I'm so happy you are here. I'm an avid nature photographer and a daydreaming thinker. My posts revolve around photos of nature's beauty, homeschooling adventures with my 2 kids, sporadic reflections on my child's heart condition, Bible reading reflections, gardening feats, and other mish mash things. Hopefully you'll leave encouraged, pensive, or smiling at the simple things of life. Thank you for stopping by and hope you'll find some interesting posts to read!