A big man in a jogging suit was in the cashier’s line ahead of me. He turned toward me and smiling from ear to ear, grabbed the pack of cookies he intended to purchase from the counter and told me to go before him. This he did while making remarks about my appearance. Now I know there was nothing remarkable about my appearance, but to listen to this man’s comments, he had encountered Miss America. His compliments were diverse and many and tasteful so I politely thanked him, and without another thought proceeded to handle the matter before me.
As I was leaving the store, he rushed ahead to open the door for me. As he did so I noticed his hands on the door. They were huge. I remember thinking they were the hands of a fighting man. I was right.
Holding the door and in the time it took me to walk out the door, he proceeded to tell me all about himself. He spoke with urgency as if it were of the utmost importance to convince me of who he was. He stated he was a professional fighter, a good man and not married. He told me his age and where he trained and where he lived. He told me he had a fight coming up this week in Memphis. He also told me he had fought last week and won enough money to last through the winter. Finally he asked me to come to Memphis to watch him fight.
Politely, I declined the offer, walking past him, I told him to be careful. Something seemed to break inside of him when I said that.
Standing there in front of the store, he told me of how he asked Jesus to protect him each time he walked into the ring. He told me that someday, he hoped to make Him proud.
He asked me if I would pray for him.
Right there on the sidewalk, this big man knelt down at my feet. I took his hand and began to pray. With people rushing past, this big man with huge hands knelt; head bowed and received my prayers to God for him.
Standing, seemingly unashamed, with tears running down his face, this giant of a man thanked me. He apologized to me for the initial way he had approached me and acknowledged that he knew there was something different about me.
What he did not know and what he soon discovered is that the difference is Christ.
I will never know why he needed prayer. I don’t need to know. I know the One who knows.
What I do know is the difference in us can make all the difference to someone else. Through Christ.
We do not always know the “what or the why”; we just need to have the will to do the works of Christ.
Anytime, anyplace, anywhere and for whomever He sends.