(This is a personal testimony shared with me by my brother, who wishes to remain anonymous.)
I would like to share a story here if I may. First and foremost, I need to state clearly that I am telling this story not to gain any accolades for myself, but so that I may share with you the healing power of God so that He may have the Glory and Praise.
I am a firm believer that Evangelism is Relationships. We as Christians tend to think “I give some cash to the guy on the corner, hope he doesn’t buy booze, and pray it makes me a decent follower.” The thing is, how many people develop a relationship with the panhandler on the street? How can you see a change in someone if you do not KNOW them?
I was going to my bank around a year ago and I noticed a homeless man with a walker holding a sign asking for money. I had seen him before, never gave him anything and never thought much about it. This time it was different, I didn’t think about helping him, I simply KNEW I was going to. So, after the bank, I went to the Starbucks next door, got him enough food for the time being and a gift card for when he needed more. I walked up to him and gave him his food, drinks, and gift card, and the man was so grateful he began crying.
I asked him then what his name was, he said, “Sisco,” and I told him I was Antone, and asked if he needed me to pray with him for anything. He said, “I need you to pray for my legs, look at them…,” he hiked up a leg of his pants and they were badly discolored and nearly black. They were in bad shape and he explained that the doctors were telling him he needed amputation. What else could I do? I knelt beside this man, I put my arm around him and prayed for healing upon his legs and his soul. He was still crying, said thank you, and I told him he was loved and being cared for by God. And I left.
I saw him a few more times here and there, always in the same spot. I always try to stop and see if he has been fed yet, do what I can to help. I had gone a few months without seeing him in his usual spot and was worried for a while, but then last month I saw him there again as usual.
I walked up, said “Hey Sisco, how are you? You get anything to eat yet?” He said “Yeah, I just ate, but I am trying to get a room for the night though, if you can help.” I gave him what I had in my pocket, and asked if he needed any help with anything else, his eyes lit up and said “Yeah, here…,” he handed me his cane and said, “Here help me hold that.” Then he got up off the curb he was sitting on and walked around with a huge smile on his face. He said, “Look at my legs! They are healed, the doctors just took the pins out and I can walk again on my own.” And his legs were no longer black, they were not even close to what they had been a year ago. He gave me a hug and said, “Thank you, God takes care of me through his vessels like you. I can walk now and I plan on getting back into construction. I just want to make my own money again.”
Brothers and sisters, trust me I know how hard this can be. I am, as my Brother Daniel can confirm, a complete Germaphobe and hugging homeless people isn’t exactly inside the realm of my comfort zone. But, to be witness to the healing power of God, and the answer of a prayer is amazing and worth every effort to see come to fruition. I have heard in many circles people say, “Well, we want to help these people, but we need an appropriate time frame to see things working and see a change brought about in their lives.” All I can say Brothers and Sisters is God has a different time frame than we do, we do not get to decide how long it takes, we get to decide only to BE obedient and patient or not to BE. I am joyful to have been able to see this happen for our Brother in Christ, Sisco, the least of us who is royalty in heaven and the most among our Lord. Have a blessed day, and thank you for reading. Praise Jesus, Glory to God.