My friend Justin is a pastor at The District Church in Washington, D.C. Last week he sent an email update that included a great story…
I want to share with you all an encounter this weekend that sort of blew my mind and reminded me that God is truly at work.
On Sunday, I preached on Acts 2 — “Promise” — and part of my message was about how God calls us out of comfort, out of our comfort zones. During the prayer time of the first service, a woman came up to me and introduced herself. Julia told me that she was new to DC, and had just moved here a month or so ago from Colorado for college. Over the last month, having left home and family, she’d been feeling really alone and like she couldn’t find any others at her school who loved Jesus. To top it off, she lost her phone this weekend and that was the last straw–she was talking to her parents about moving back.
She explained to me that she’d been trying to go to another church, but because she lost her phone, she found herself on a bus heading in the opposite direction. She asked somebody else on the bus where the bus was going–it turned out to be a woman who was coming back to TDC for only the second time! She told Julia that the bus was coming to Columbia Heights and that she was coming to church.
So Julia ended up joining her, and listening to a message about being outside of her comfort zone, where everything has been stripped away. And she realized that this might be where God actually wants her to be. Time will tell if she decides to call DC home after all; if she decides that this is the place she’s supposed to be for this time. But either way, it was encouraging to hear.
On our newcomers cards, we have a line that asks “How did you hear about us?”
Julia’s card read: “I got lost and ended up at church.”
I love it when God shows that he can work through brokenness and discomfort and disorientation and even getting lost. There’s probably a sermon in there somewhere…