Last night, I was out with my buddy Jim and we hit a Perkins around 10pm. I wasn’t thrilled to join him, as it was in a scary part of town and most nights I am just not in the mood for a drive-by. “I am not hungry.” He laughed “Yes, you are. You are just panicky. It will be okay, you’ll see.” We walked through the dark parking lot and I was already mad at him.
We get inside and it looked like a normal Perkins. “See. No gang wars in here.” He continued to try to calm me down. “We are actually close to the U.” As we were seated, it was hard not to notice a group of 15-20 young men and women, sitting in a corner, laughing and being loud. The noise was overwhelming, adding to my anxiety and made it hard to concentrate on the sticky menu. Agggghhh! “What is on this menu?” Jim laughed, “Big girl pants, Jeanne. Big girl pants!” I hate it when Jim is not sensitive about my occasional anxiety. “Ok. Well if a shooter comes in, he will go after the annoying kids first, anyway.” J rolls his eyes, this isn’t the first time he has witnessed my inner city restaurant panic attacks.
The noisy gaggle flies the coop, just as we are served our meals, and it is suddenly very quiet. J remarks about the sudden drop in noise and our server Brad says ” They come in once a month and we try to seat them in the corner. They are actually high school kids.”
God quickly illuminates the server to me. Brad is an attractive young man and God tells me he is a college student. A college student with a financial problem. I dig into my omelet and think in my head “Sure God, all college students are worried about money.” God continues, give him a good tip and give him a word. Nah. A bigger tip? Nah. Now I know this is all in my head.
In the middle of the meal, Brad arrives with our bill and informs us that they will be closing soon. As I start to fill out the receipt, God repeats his request and tells me to tip the server $10 on my $7 meal, to make a point. As I handed the server my slip, I said “I know this is going to sound odd, but God is telling me to give you a good tip because you are worried about money. Are you.?”
He smiled, “Well, I am a college student. I am always worried about money.” “Yes, I can imagine that is true, but this is something very specific,” It suddenly hits him what I am speaking about and his eyes momentarily start to well up. You know, the guy version of tears. He nods his head. “Well God is saying not to worry, that it will all be taken care of and it won’t be a big deal. You will find that it will all work out and the money will come through in unexpected ways. Later you will say, why was I even worried.” His eyes welled up again “Thank you. I appreciate that.” “Seriously, it will all work out.” He looked relieved and a smile crossed his face. “Thank you, I really appreciate it.” Now I know $10 was not going to solve his problem, but God was telling him that He was on it. Then God showed me what the money was for and I was glad that I had braved the scary neighborhood and the sticky menu.
Now you might think sometimes when you have a word for someone, that is sounds really vague or that it could apply to anyone. But, you can always tell when it is from God. How? Because it will speak to the person and you will see it physically register. A light bulb goes off. Even if it is a nano second. You will see the person’s inner witness connect, because at that point it is no longer you, but God himself connecting with His child.
We were the last people to leave the restaurant and yelled goodbye to Brad, who was busy vacuuming the carpet. He smiled and replied, “Thanks. Really, thank you so much.”
Glad I put on my big girl pants last night.