We had no business being at that restaurant last night. We’re moving in about 6 weeks and, as anyone who has ever moved can tell you, the cost of moving is about 9 bazillion times higher than you ever anticipate. But we went, because the youngest had won gift cards – $50 in gift cards to be exact to a restaurant that my husband also happened to have a $25 gift card for. For a family of five, $75 is typical for a dinner out. If not for those gift cards, we wouldn’t have gone.
But there we were, sitting in an obscure section of the restaurant that few people were being seated in, because the rest of the restaurant was much more appealing. There were a couple of other tables filled and some tables that were seated while we were there. I watched the people come and go with no real thought or sense of awareness. It was just a rare dinner out for us on a rainy October evening.
And then I looked up as an elderly couple was being seated at a table against the wall.
“Pay for them.”
Have you ever felt led to do something that is clearly not in your plans? It’s that voice that resonates in your soul pushing you toward love. My soul knows the sound of God clearly and, although I don’t always listen, I try to be aware and follow where it leads. That night it was saying, “Pay for them.”
Now look, I had NO intention of spending money in that restaurant other than the tip. I knew the $75 in gift cards would cover the meal and that was the only reason we went. I even have a running tally on my phone of what we still need to buy for the move, how much it’s going to cost, and how much more I need to earn in order to meet those needs. Every penny counts at this point.
But here I was being told to pay for dinner for an elderly couple who, by the looks of it, had enough money to pay for their own meal. Looks can be deceiving, of course, but they didn’t appear to need financial assistance paying. And yet I texted my husband from across the table so as not to make the kids too aware of what was going on and said, “This is going to sound crazy and I know we don’t have the money for it, but I feel like we have to pay for the couple against the wall.” He’s known me long enough to know that when I get those feelings, I can’t shake them. So he replied with an, “Okay, go for it.”
I was able to catch our waitress and explained what I wanted to do, but that I didn’t want them to know. She graciously merged the checks and put their meal on our bill, keeping everything hush hush. I paid, left the tip for both tables, and we left.
God whispers, I call them. Plans beyond your own. Whispers of how to show love. Purpose bigger than your own. And you know what happens when you listen and follow where they lead you? Your soul feels joy and peace. You know deep, deep down that you did something that was good and whispered in love.
Part of me wishes I could have seen their reaction when they discovered their bill had been paid for. Did they smile? Were they happy? Was it an act of love that they needed last night of all nights? Did it give them hope? Did they drive home feeling blessed and loved? I hope so, because we sure did.
And this is love: that we walk according to His commands. This is the command as you have heard it from the beginning: you must walk in love.
—2 John 1:6
May your day be filled with blessings and unexpected God whispers that lead you to a soul-deep sense of peace that you deserve. And if you hear that voice of love whispering, pay attention, because the more you listen, the more you’ll hear.