“Is this really happening?” Maybe it wasn’t the first question I should have been asking myself, but, there are no words to convey the panic and the excitement I felt the first time someone asked me why I do what I do. We had just started working in downtown Savannah and decided to participate in a work day with the church that owns our facility. About 30 minutes into painting a fence, I met Mac. Mac was cruising down the sidewalk with his walker and stopped in front of us. He found out about the project at church and, since he lived at an assisted living home just up the street, he wanted to help. After talking and painting for a bit, the conversation turned to our program. I explained some of what we did and he became interested in our GED program. Shortly after that, he became quiet and told me, “You know, I would really love to get my GED. I left school when I was in 5th grade to help support my family and I never finished. The problem is; I don’t know how to read.” Moved by his story, I told him we would find him a coach to help him learn. At that moment, his eyes filled with tears and he asked the question; “Why would you do that?” Getting over my panic, I said the first thing that came to my mind. “Well Mac, God loves me, I love God, God loves people, so I try to love people.” “Wow, you people are great!” Mac said, the tears now visible on his cheeks. The only thing I could say to him was “I don’t know about that. But before Jesus I was a mess. I was angry and afraid. Now, I can’t help but love people the way he asks me to and I’m less afraid. He’s not done with me yet!” My answer was definitely not a complete answer. It wasn’t eloquent or theological, but Mac came back to hear more.
My parents became followers of Christ when I was very young so for as long as I can remember I’ve grown up with Christian influence around me. I felt God calling me to follow him when I was 7 and I became a baptized believer. I don’t really have a big turn around point from what I was like before Christ to how I changed after Christ (because I honestly don’t remember much of my life before Christ). But, I do have several instances or circumstances in my life where I’ve seen God move. So for my testimony writing time today I thought of different times in my life where I may have doubted or thought a situation was hopeless in the beginning to but through seeing perseverance with Christ or the power of God my faith has been strengthened. I’ve decided to call these my “Mini Stories”. I’ve shared different ones at different times over the past few years but today I wrote down and outlined them all on the same document and created questions to ask after each of them. This way I can be more familiar with and ready to share my different “Mini Stories” when their times come.