(See the book of Mark, chapter 4)
I’ve been taking an online mini-course called "Love Says Go" by Jason Chin.
One of our exercises was "sowing seeds" and we were to go out in public and
find someone we did not know to pray for, encourage, or bless. I'm already one
of those people who hold doors, usually have a smile on their face, or give a
compliment or encouraging word to others while shopping. But this day, on my
way to the grocery store, I prayed for the Holy Spirit to highlight someone specific
for me to pray for or bless.
I went through the store being my usual self, but with a stronger sense of purpose.
And found? Absolutely nobody. No one would return a smile, make eye contact, or
even seem approachable. I felt a little down about it and, after putting my bags in
the truck, just sat there and started talking to Jesus, "Lord, this didn't go so well",
and praying in tongues.
When I looked up, I saw an elderly gentleman with white hair. He was wearing
a pink shirt with a picture of a crown on the back and the words, "Stay Strong".
I climbed out of my truck thinking this was the one I was supposed to pray for.
But I looked around and could not find him. (Now I realize God must have been
using him to encourage me.)
I drove over to the new antique mall and ran into an old friend who just went through a bad divorce, and I was able to give her some encouragement. But
the assignment specifically said to approach someone you don't know. I decided
to try another day. But on my way home, I heard "Taco Bell" loud and clear in my
head. I wasn't hungry. Again I heard, "Taco Bell."
So I whipped in there, ordered a couple tacos, and arrived at the window to find
an exhausted young woman who was seven months pregnant with her first baby –
a boy. She was willing to let me bless her and pray that all goes well during her pregnancy and delivery, for her and the baby. While we were talking, a young man
who worked there walked up and said, "I'm expecting a baby soon, too." I was able
to encourage and bless him as well. Yay, Jesus! As I left, they thanked me and said, "God bless you, too, Ma'am." I’m so grateful that God allowed me to participate in
that humble, but holy, work of “sowing seeds.”
Janine Pickett is a grandmother to four of the most adorable babies in the world. Her
nonfiction work has appeared in commercial print magazines including Country Woman magazine and in "Chicken Soup For The Soul". Her fiction was nominated by THEMA
literary journal for "The Year's Best Horror and Fantasy #17". Her current poetry appears
in print anthologies: "'Tis the Season: An Anthology of Christmas Poems", "Moonlight Dreamers of Yellow Haze", "GFT Presents", and "Poets of Madison County". Her online
work appears in Poebita Poetry Magazine, Indiana Voice Journal, GFT Press (May).
Janine recently co-edited a regional poetry anthology, "Poets of Madison County". She is
the founding editor of Indiana Voice Journal and Spirit Fire Review. Janine can be reached