Monday, January 2, 2017

COWBOY BOOTS - Gary Wilkerson

“Whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully” (2 Corinthians 9:6, ESV).
A drifter, homeless and confused, was directed into my office when I served as an assistant pastor at Times Square Church in New York City years ago. He wasn’t interested in making conversation until he looked down and saw my fine, genuine Texas cowboy boots.
“I don’t know why I’m here,” he spat out. “You preachers are all the same, spending money on big buildings and fancy cars. And look at those boots!”
After he made that last remark, he looked down at his beat-up, ripped canvas shoes and shuffled his feet self-consciously.
“Do you like these boots?” I asked. And before he could answer, I removed my boots and gave them to him. And, yes, I walked home shoeless. Then forgot the incident.
About six months later, a pastor friend, Steve, called from Greensboro, North Carolina.
“Gary, you’re not going to believe this, but there’s a guy in my office who says you gave him a pair of cowboy boots. He’s been hitchhiking around the country and he says that every time he looks at those boots, he thinks about Jesus.”
That young man wandered into my friend’s church (obviously led by the Holy Spirit) and said he wanted to know more about Jesus. You can imagine the joy that brought to my pastor friend! But Steve was forthright with him.
“For six months the Holy Spirit has been after you. Are you ready to give your life to Christ?”
“That’s why I’m here!” And he was born again right then.
I want to encourage you to look for opportunities, even if you feel like you’re in a famine. Is your marriage in a famine? Look for an opportunity to serve, to love, to bless your spouse.
Are you in a famine with your children? Is there division and turmoil? Look for an opportunity to love, to serve, to order your household according to the ways of the Lord.
Are there difficulties in your finances? Look for a way in the midst of the famine to be a blessing to others and you will find the windows of heaven opening.
God pours out rich blessings on those who give —cheerfully.