Tag Archives: need

Who Is Calling For Your Help Today?

An ordinary day. An ordinary walk.

Just my youngest daughter and I at the downtown mall.

Suddenly I heard the sound.

So faint I almost missed it.

“Please help me.”

I glanced around wondering where those words had come from.

My eyes fell on the form of an elderly woman crouched on the steps of a building.

I slowed my steps to look and I heard those words again.

“Please help me.”

My heart leapt with mixed longing and caution.

Alone she sat while people walked back and forth busy about their plans.

Her aged eyes met mine

and she spoke again. “Please help me.”

Placed before her on the brick walk was a solitary bowl containing a few bills.

I kept on slowly walking pondering the need suddenly put right on my path.

“Was she really in need?”

She was clothed simply as far as I could see. But those words pierced my heart.

As my daughter and I walked on past we softly spoke.

“We should give something to her,” we agreed.

I knew that we didn’t have much with us. And was this a genuine need?

In this day it is common to ask this question.

And then I thought again. My daughter –young and growing so quickly these days

was learning. What would my life teach her?

Caution? To hold tightly to what we have? To shut our hearts to the needs of another?

Lord, help me live with open heart and open hands, I prayed.

He knew the bigger need at that moment.

In the distance I could hear the shaky voice call again, “Please help me.”

And in that moment I knew.

Life is lived by giving;

not grasping.

By emptying ourselves;

not hoarding our treasured possessions.

By loving;

not selfishness.

It took only a few second until we stood in front of her.

We both rummaged in our wallets.

Time seemed to stop as I watched my daughter step forward

to place our offering in the bowl.

Multiply that simple offering, Lord, and bless this dear soul.

Yes, Lord.

In as much as you do it unto her you do it unto Me. (Matt. 25:37)

A sacred moment when we touched His Robe.

Let me never become so cautious and careful

that I miss an opportunity to join You in Your Work here

and I turn deaf ears to a cry for help.

“Please help me.”

Who is calling for your help today?

PC NoelleBraniPhotography

Dancing With the Daffodils

It was more than forty years ago

but I can’t see daffodils without remembering that special moment of long ago.

Everything that day up until that moment had been ordinary.

College classes.  Long walks to and fro. Quick snack on the run.

I was young. Yes, very young and going to college more than five hours from home.

And I missed home.

My mom’s cooking. The sound of familiar voices.  Loving family ties.

The broad streets where the first hint of spring had appeared.  My mom had told me about it in her recent letter. But it was still three weeks until spring break. Three weeks that seemed like forever to this college freshman.

As I walked into the dorm that late afternoon

my thoughts were probably already pondering what I’d study that night.

My steps were slow matching the heaviness of my heart.

But as I walked toward the stairs that would take me to my room

my eyes fell upon a huge bouquet of daffodils sitting on the counter.

Their beauty broke through not only the dreariness of my lonely life

but also the routine of the day.

Curiosity drew me to the yellow daffodils.

Who could have possibly left them here?

I glanced around the empty lobby.

Strange.

Then my eyes looked down at those gorgeous dancing flowers

and I noticed a small piece of white paper with something scribbled on it.

My name.

That was all.

Those lovely daffodils were for me.

Someone. Somewhere had left them for me.

Joy upon joy flooded my heart. Loneliness disappeared and in it’s place was gratitude.

Words from Wordsworth’s poem came to mind –

I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance

That gorgeous bouquet shone as brightly as ten thousand daffodils

that day

and still dances in my memory. Rich with beauty.

Somehow the years passed and I found myself finally going home

to my lovely hometown along the Susquehanna River.

But I never forgot those golden dancing daffodils and the kindness of the mysterious giver.

And today as I passed them on a morning walk my heart beat gladly with joy again.

He knows your every need.

He sees your deepest longing.

He cares

and will never forget.

daffodils march 10

Shining Moments

The images press into my thoughts again and again

as I move through my day’s normal activities.

Precious children. Fear-filled eyes. Wounded bodies….

Weeping parents…

Weary teachers in shock.

A relieved woman holding her dog

and on and on and on.

It happened so suddenly but the memory will be difficult to remove.

How suddenly our whole world can be turned upside down.

One moment we have

and the next we’ve lost everything.

My heart looks to the Only One Who can heal the broken hearted

and my prayers rise upward throughout my waking hours.

Please comfort

and encourage…

and give hope where there seems to be no hope, Lord.

Prayers that I know make a difference.

Ask and you shall receive

Seek and you shall find

Knock and it shall be opened unto you.

So I ask and seek and pray

longing to do more. To give myself.

Yes, to go there.

An opportunity arises leaving me wondering if maybe this is His Way.

Could I possibly lend a hand?

My little teaspoon of help amidst the huge ocean of needs.

Seems much too small, doesn’t it? I wonder.

What difference would it really make?

So my thoughts wrestle back and forth as I weigh the possibility.

Finding myself almost longing for that handwriting in the sky.

Waiting to somehow know

while resting in the comfort that He will show me.

It’s so different to be the hands

to be the heart that listens and gives hope.

Yes, it would really be the harder path to put myself there.

Gazing out upon the vast destruction

Seeing the broken lives.

But I ask myself again and again,

How can I really do less?

He came to die so that we might live.

He gave His all so that we might know life.

Because I have been given much

I too must give.

Give till there’s nothing more to give.