August 05, 2010

Bigger Picture Moments: Joy in Obedience

Another Thursday, another chance to share my weekly Bigger Picture Moment. For more inspiring moments, visit Hyacenth's blog.

The Sunday evening service began like each and every service prior. We were welcomed by the song leader. The choir sang, a prayer was offered, more singing, and then the service was turned over to our pastor.

From my seat in the sound booth (hubby runs the sound board, and I operate the computer/projector) I half-heartedly listened as our pastor explained there would be no sermon that night. Instead, a guest speaker would be sharing his story. With his words, I closed the program we use to project the sermon notes, and opened up Spider Solitaire.

As the speaker took the stage, I began my first game….

{Jack to Queen, Queen to King}

He was tall, slender, with a neatly trimmed beard. His voice – a deep rich tenor – was heavily accented. He thanked the congregation for the opportunity to speak to us. He apologized for his accent. English was not his native tongue. He spoke French – and a little Hatiain Creole.

{Ace to the two…. Board cleared – Game won}

And then he began to sing – an hymn that I am familiar with – I’ll Fly Away. But instead of English, he sang in his native tongue. The sanctuary rang with the beautiful melody. Suddenly, Spider Solitaire no longer interested me.

From my seat at the back, I began to sing along with him. Our voice melded – his French, my English – and I though “This is what heaven will be like … each nation represented, each tongue spoken all for the glory of God.”

After he ended the song, he told his story. He is a pastor of small church in Haiti – a church that was devastated by the earthquake in January. Thru tears, he spoke of the agonoy he feels as he tries to feed the widows and orphans in his congregation. He told us that his country was poor with a history of voodoo – and though he has had opportunities to come to America, he chooses to stay where God is using him.

My heart was pricked. I have a nice home, a good job, two vehicles in my garage, clothes to wear, food to eat – and yet I am often ungrateful. I had grown resentful of the service that I was asked to give….

Suddenly, I saw myself much like my 3 year old niece, stomping my foot and telling God “No, I don’t want too.”

The tears began to flow, and as our pastor called for the ushers to collect a lover offering for our guest, I felt the nudge on my heart – “Write the check” the Lord whispered.

Without hesitation, I took out the checkbook, wrote the check – and in that moment peace flowed over me. I felt joy, exhilaration, happiness. Not because I had given money. The emotion was because I was obedient to my Heavenly Father.

Obedience brings joy – a simple truth that I have always known – it just took a Haitian preacher with a tenor voice to remind me.


Jennifer said...

It never fails to amaze him how God can take the simpliest of things to change our hearts

Hyacynth said...

The joy in giving makes my heart soar ... it's one of my spiritual gifts, and I find great pleasure in it. But the joy in obedience always makes my heart soar AND it makes Him smile.
I'm so glad you felt the nudge and responded. There's such an indescrible feeling when we're in tune with the Spirit. So glad you linked your BPM today. :)

michelle said...

i really liked this post.
first because you admited to playing solitaire in church...and how you told the story...and because you were obedient and honest.

Vanessa said...

The feeling of being truly obedient when He calls is so amazing isn't it? We truly are FREE to live the life He wants for us.

Hyacynth said...

Hi Kim! Your post was randomly chosen to be featured at our Bigger Picture Blogs site. Let me know if you accept or not by the end of the day if you could please! HyacynthWorth{at}yahoo{dot}com