This past weekend I got to teach at all of our student services. I love it. The whole weekend was a recap and interactive service of the series we have been doing all month, Think Different. For part of the message I hit on forgiveness and how we are called to forgive others because we are forgiven and forgiveness helps us release the bitterness we hold on to. This part of the message, students would write down a name of someone they need to forgive, pray for them in service, and take the name and stick it on the nail of the cross we had on stage to signify this was the first step towards forgiveness of that person. It was super powerful.
During the last service, I saw a student I met during our “You Own the Weekend” series who came for the first time and has been coming ever since. I saw this student put their card on the cross and go back to their seat, alone. I felt the Holy Spirit tell me to go over and say hi, right in the middle of the last set of worship songs. I fought it. It would be awkward. It would be inconvenient. I had to do the closing announcements in a few minutes and I was afraid I would miss the cue, but the urge was still there. So I went.
I came up behind the student and gave a tap on the back to say hi and the student turned around with tears streaming down their face. It caught me off guard. I immediately asked if they wanted to go outside and talk. So we did. This student was angry, bitter, and hurt by a huge betrayal of someone close. “I felt you were talking directly to me about forgiveness. I don’t want to feel this bitterness towards this person anymore.” We talked for a while. We prayed. It was a great moment. It’s why we do what we do.
My point? Don’t sacrifice a nudge from the Holy Spirit to minister a student to inconvenience.
The thought that raced through my mind after this interaction was, “How many great interactions have I missed out on because of inconvenience or uncomfortableness?” Guess what, the band noticed I was not by the stage and the service was dismissed successfully, without me. What a concept. It was fine. No one was hurt, but someone was heard, cared for and ministered to. When we act on His promptings, His work will always get done.
“ Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.” Romans 8:26.