Thursday, December 3, 2009

Surprised by God

God has surprised me these last two weeks. Two Thursdays ago, during staff meeting, Senior Pastor sense that God wanted to touch those who have regrets from ministry in the past. I felt and strong urge within me. I began to cry uncontrollably and responded to the call.

I have been carrying with me a scar from ministry way back from my days in youth ministry. Its been 15 years and a long time to carry the scar of guilt. There have been occasions in the past where I have been able to initiate and ask for forgiveness from one or two of the youth from back then. E had at times brush this off as unnecessarily racking up the past.

After a time of prayer and ministry, I wiped my tears and was about to return to my seat when from behind me Deb came up, gave me tissue, a hug and a word of affirmation. I broke down a second time. Deb was one of the youth leaders back then.

Flash-forward to last Friday evening. I was helping with child(ren)-minding at the UKidz Advance. That evening was no different for the three men and a grandma who were assigned to look after the kids while the adults had their session. We were screen a Veggie Tales Video so the children were quite settled. All but my Small One.

The adult session was not the usual one, it was what we have come to call a spiritual spa i.e. a time of reflection, meditation and communion. My small one got restless and asking for mummy. I brought her out of the function room only to see E coming out the adult session and waving me to join her. "Can you spare a few minutes in there?" she asked, pointing at were the adults were having the spa. I thought she was asking me to join her for a time there, so I prepared to go through the different stations.

When I went in, E directed me immediately to the feet washing station. There a young man was waiting to wash my feet. He looked familiar. "Benjamin" flashed through my head but "Joseph" was on his name tag. I sat down and let him wash my feet. I can't remember the blessing he prayed but remember the word "leader" mentioned. When he had finished, I began to put on my shoes when E stopped me as she wanted to wash my feet. Now, that was an emotional moment. After that was over, Joseph approached me spoke to me. He had been holding a grudge against me since my youth ministry days. Now he wanted to have reconciliation between us. It was then I remembered. I hugged him.

Later was to learn from E that it was Joseph that asked for me and not E had initially wanted me there.

Having Joseph do the act of reconciliation by the washing of my feet was what God was using to bring closure the scar and memory back from 15 years ago. It was not so much what was said but what was done that was significant.

God could have used anyone of the youth from back then. He could have used Deb to bring closure, but it may not have been enough. God chose Joseph because he was the one of youngest of them there. He was barely a teen then. He was among the "forgotten" ones. I remembered him as Benjamin.