Last week was busy, busy with the pulling together of Mercy Street's luncheon.
It ended up being fabulous and full to the brim with friends who came to hear the story and support what we're doing.
We were incredibly blessed.
There are so many little details that go into an event like this one and thankfully, my mother-in-law is a 'many little details' type of gal. She remembers everything - from who's responded and where they're sitting to exactly how many pieces of fried chicken the average person will eat.
It's a gift.
Right in the middle of the day on Wednesday, when we were running around tying up all the loose ends, one of our mentors walked through the doors in somewhat of a panic.
Alan has been a mentor for years now and is incredibly faithful to his student. The relationship has been rocky, and difficult, and certainly not ideal. Sometimes, it's akward. Sometimes, they don't have anything to talk about. Sometimes, all they talk about is homework.
Alan knows this because, over the course of the semester, Wilber has been asking him to come out to the house late at night to help him with his homework.
The child and his mother had moved in with her boyfriend and apparently, the student wanted Alan there with him late at night.
Wednesday afternoon, when Alan burst through the doors, he found himself again, entirely out of his comfort zone.
Wilber had called and asked Alan to come spend time with him once again because Tuesday night, Wilber's mother had been murdered by her boyfriend.
Alan was understandably unsure of how to comfort this young man in this heartbreaking time but what blessed me so much was the fact that he was there. He didn't know all the answers and didn't even know what he was going to say to this young man. He was nervous but he was there. He had left work and come halfway across town in the middle of the morning to do what he had promised - to put feet on his commitment to be a caring Christian adult in the life of this child and walk with him until he graduated from high school.
Wilber wasn't calling because he wanted to go to a movie, or to dinner, or to Six Flags. He didn't want to be entertained, he just wanted someone to sit with him, someone he could count on, who he's been able to count on in the past, while he dealt with the horror before him.
The Lord is so faithful to use us, in our weakness when we make ourselves available and that's what Alan did. It's never what we bring to the table that gets us anywhere. That stuff usually just ends up as baggage anyway, hindering us and tripping us up. Instead, He prepares a table for us - a feast. Then He clothes us, equips us, and even goes before us as He transforms us, amidst our weakness, into His hands and feet.
I'm so thankful for the example Alan was to me last week. It was a great reminder that, if we wait until we have all the answers, until it all works seamlessly and plays out well on paper, we'll miss the opportunity to do exactly what we've been called to do - to come when He calls and carry one another's burderns with them - sometimes, for them.