It’s been a minute, but I am back at it baby!
I’ve had this post in the mental tank for a while, just took my time writing and uploading it.
I think the relationship God wants us to have with Him is like that of a beggar and a rich man. Here me out.
Not the standard relationship or lack of relationship you see as you are on your way to work. The beggar asking a rich man for a dollar and the rich man ignoring him or her or even accepting and giving the beggar a dollar is Not what I am referring to here. These examples are NOT the relationship I believe God wants us to have with Him. At All!
But these are the “relationships” between beggars and people with money we see on a daily basis most of the times.
Let’s pretend God is the rich man in this story and we, as humans, are the beggars. If we really need something, like money for instance, we oftentimes go to someone who looks to have it or a way to it. So that beggar asking a rich man driving by for some spare change could, in my opinion, be looked at as a man who just lost all the money in his wallet and prays to God that God will provide a way for him to make the money back quickly as he needs it for a trip.
We have all seen beggars on the side of the road with cardboard boxes writing out why they may need money. Whether they lost it all due to some illness or accident, army veteran, or even a heartfelt message about God, I’m almost positive we’ve seen them.
I am not saying here that praying for something you believe you need is bad, but what I am preaching is a true relationship versus a “gimme gimme” relationship.
How different would it feel if you saw a beggar on the side of the road with no sign, just sitting their. You drive up to him with your window down and instead of asking you for money he doesn’t ask you for anything. Instead they ask you how you are doing today. That may blow your mind as you are not used to that or you think they have alternative motives. Maybe they are trying a new strategy of being nice to you to see if you will give them money.
So you drive off thinking it’s just another money making scheme.
But then you come back every other day that week and the same beggar does the exact same thing. He just asks you about how your day/week is going and tells you to have a good day. But one day the beggar does something different.
They do something profound!
You pull up beside the beggar and he says that they hope you have a good business meeting on Friday. In your head you are blown away as you don’t know how they knew about your business meeting. But then you remember you told them last week as you were stopped next to them at the stoplight.
You tell the beggar “thank you” as you drive off completely taken back. The rest of your day is a blur as you just can’t believe you not only had a full fledged continuous conversation with a beggar at a stoplight for over a week, but that they remembered your meeting. You and your wife have been arguing lately, plus she has been so busy with the kids at home that she didn’t even remember.
You leave work early that day to attend your kids soccer game all the while thinking about that beggar and how he remembered your meeting. How he remembered YOU!
So the next day when you pull up to the beggar, you don’t just offer to give him a dollar, you offer to give him $100. But he won’t take it.
The beggar realized as he had been sitting on the side of the road for many months that what is valuable in life isn’t money. The beggar saw how angry people were as they drove by the stoplight each day. Honking, yelling at their family members in the car or people on the phone each and everyday. People in really nice cars and really nice suits he might add.
And the beggar then realized that he had more peace sitting on the side of the road with “nothing” than in a fancy car, heading to a well paying job with a house full of kids at home.
So the beggar denied the rich man’s money. But the beggar told the rich man that he would give him something instead. The rich man was shocked and didn’t know what he believed the beggar could offer him.
The beggar said that he would give the rich man his time every day, as long as he wanted it. The beggar realized also through sitting along the side of the road and seeing so many angry people, that you can always make more money, but you can Never make more time. Which is probably why he felt people were always rushing and so angry at traffic. They knew their time was limited here on earth so they had to hurry!
But in his head he was confused because what they seemed to be chasing everyday didn’t give them much, if any, fulfillment as they were always angry.
The beggar and the rich man would continue to strike up conversations each morning and soon the rich man knew A LOT more about the beggars life and vice versa. One day the rich man did something the beggar didn’t expect. Through actively listening to the beggar for so many months and learning more about the beggar and his family, he bought the beggar a plane ticket to see his family in Ohio. Not only that, the rich man bought the beggar a home for him and his kids who were living with their mom in Ohio.
Through actively listening for months, the rich man learned that the beggar lost his family to drinking a year ago, but found Christ as he was kicked out and left to live on the streets in Ohio.
The beggar almost took his life as he felt that everything was taken from him. One day he snuck back into his house as his wife and kids were gone for the day and found a handgun he had. He then found an alleyway close to his house, hid behind a trash can and put the gun to his head. Before he pulled the trigger he saw a church with a Big cross across the street.
He remembered going to church as a young boy with his parents who were now dead. As the beggar held the gun to his head in an alleyway across from a church in Ohio, remembering the old church songs he would sing in Sunday school as a child, he just called on Jesus in his heart. He then felt a rush of peace overcome his whole being, in a way he couldn’t explain, which led to him dropping his gun, falling to the ground on his knees and starting to weep profusely. There, on his knees crying, the beggar looked up to the sky and exclaimed at the top of his lungs in that alleyway that “Jesus is the Son of God!”
That moment FOREVER changed his life. From there his life changed, he felt a new peace about him and he felt lead to move to California.
The beggar knew that Jesus saved his life.
The beggar of coarse denied many times the rich mans kind gesture, but the rich man gave the beggar one rule. That rule was that even with the new home in Ohio, that he would have to find a local coffee shop, park or street corner to continue talking and listening to people. That the rich man would send him money each month as long as he continued to do so.
After the beggar tried over and over to deny, the beggar obliged.
I say this story to portray in my opinion what a relationship with God for most of us looks like and what it should look like. In the beginning I referenced beggars just asking people they believed had money for money as they felt they needed it to survive. Not striking up a real conversation and just looking for a quick buck to get by.
Next I talked on a story between a beggar and a rich man. This story, to me, illustrates how a relationship with God should be in that God hears our drive by prayers where we hold out a sign and ask Him for things that we believe we “need.” Though God sometimes answers these drive by prayers, He prefers the long conversations any day. God wants you to pull up next to Him and He want to ask you how you are doing today. He wants you to ask Him how He is doing today. With no ulterior motive other than building a relationship with Him.
And as you can see with the rich man and beggar, through building a relationship over time with the beggar, the rich man saw what was hurting the beggar wasn’t just being away from his kids, but that they didn’t know Jesus, he felt. That his kids didn’t grow up going to church like he did. That his kids didn’t know the Jesus who saved their fathers life!
The beggar in my story didn’t want money. He just wanted from people what he believed was more valuable than money. Your time.
So as you spend time with God more and more, different hurts spring up and God sees that. God already knows them, contrary to the rich man, but God and you see what is really hurting you. He wants to bring you His Son, Jesus Christ, to bring healing to the pain, but also abundance to your life through a genuine relationship with Him.
You may have thought a job lost is what is really bothering you, but after spending more time with God you can see that it’s not the lost job which is hurting you but feeling as if you will make your family not proud of you and become a failure to them without a job.
So that’s all God wants. A true relationship with you and not a drive by relationship.
Through a true relationship where you disconnect from all technology and things to connect with your Creator, you will see not only just how much He cares about you but also how He knows already what you need.
So after writing this blog, I think I have to change my initial statement. I am wondering now who is portraying God (though I know nobody truly ever can) and if it is the rich man or the beggar? Hmmn…Let me think about that 1.