Looks like it’s going to a busy week for guest blogs written in response to our need-meeting challenge, so we’re getting a head start. Here’s the first post – anonymous by request for obvious reasons, and with a little twist of extra challenge at the end…
We were meeting at a kids’ play farm with our best friends and their little girl for an afternoon of catching up. We hadn’t seen too much of them recently and were really looking forward to a natter, however as the afternoon progressed it was clear all was not terribly well. Over tea and scones we asked what was wrong and a whole great tale came out, involving all manner of life issues from discovering she was pregnant again, to the fact that they had been asking God whether they should stay locally or move up the country to find work that was better paid, to some serious spiritual warfare stuff: it all came tumbling out.
My husband and I had just had a conversation about money earlier that week and realised we had more than we thought following his promotion and some other payments stopping. A happy realisation and a very prescient one as our friends shared real struggles with paying their bills that afternoon. After a meaningful glance at each other we offered to give them £100. Per month. Until they didn’t need it anymore.
This was not a heroic ride to their rescue: although they had money worries these were really the least pressing of their needs. In fact as I offered the money I was deeply aware this didn’t seem to make enough difference. This was God’s timing, both my husband and I felt that, and as the conversation developed further I found myself saying ‘If you don’t agree to have the money put into your bank account monthly we’ll just find other ways to give it to you like stuffing £20’s down the side of your sofa each time we come round’ I was utterly convinced they should have the money!
I would generally classify myself as a generous person, but even so I feel this week’s challenge keenly; if we weren’t prepared to do this for our closest friends, what kind of friends does that make us? So what about the stranger or ‘alien’ in our midst? Would I be prepared to listen for a need and then fill it for someone I don’t know? That really would be stepping out into the unknown.