My dad has been involved in prison ministry for over twenty years. He has a rapport with the inmates that keep them coming to his class day after day. What’s not to love about a sixty-eight-year-old Bible teacher who walks up to the podium with his jeans purposely pulled down to expose boxers, evoking laughter from all his adoring “homeboys?” Dad is so well respected in the Florida prison system, he was offered a position as County Chaplain. He turned it down for fear of losing personal contact with the inmates in exchange for hours of deskwork and red tape. He is a four-time recipient of the "volunteer of the year” award.
I once asked him, “How did you know it was God’s will for you to go into prison ministry? Did you have a sign? A ‘word’ from God?”
Dad's answer made a lasting impression on me, and has affected the way I understand spiritual guidance.
“No,” he said. “I didn’t even pray about it. I saw a need and I was available to fill it.”
Don’t get me wrong. There is a time and place for waiting on God to receive specific instruction before jumping at a good opportunity. If family or health is at stake, for instance, get God’s input. (I could write an entirely different post about the multitudes of worn-out people who never consult God about their endless activities.)
But a word to Christians who need a lightning bolt answer from Heaven before deciding whether to have tuna noodle casserole or ham loaf for dinner (take my advice and have neither): You’re freaking me out. Quit being so spooky, and wondering why your non-believing friends want nothing to do with your religion.
On simple matters of helping people, God told us His will through the wise King Solomon long ago:
“Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in the power of your hand to do so.” Proverbs 3:27
For those that still aren’t convinced, here is your word from God for today: JUST DO IT.