Testimony of Tired
My wife Caroline is a counselor by trade and oftentimes I pick up concepts from her. One of them is the acronym "HALT" – hungry, angry, lonely, and tired. We make bad decisions in either one or a combination of those states of being. This is particularly true of those who struggle with an addiction of some sort. Concerning HALT maybe the most common threat among urban dwellers is “T,” which is tired.
I belong to a small urban church, like those we serve. One of my good friends there is Donnie. We met a few years ago. He worked as a shiner at the shoe shine stand at my home airport. Often before catching my plane I’d stop by to chat and get a shine. It was through this relationship that he and his family eventually started attending church with me.
A turning point in his faith was when he attended our men’s retreat. One of the sessions we went off in sets of three and shared our hearts. I remember sitting with Donnie and watching him cry, pouring out his heart about his mindset at the time. He was tired.
Tired of working at the shoe shine stand for meager earnings. Tired of being estranged from his dad. Really, just tired of his station in life. After bearing his soul, he showed sincere gratitude to be able to get away for a few days with his Christian brothers for a time of renewal.
This past Sunday Caroline had to tap me on the shoulder to hustle up to make our lunch appointment because I was lingering too long in the church foyer. What was I doing? Hanging out with Donnie and his wife. He was informing me of his new job with American Airlines, and we were celebrating the journey he had taken since he poured out his heart at that retreat. His test had become a testimony.
Like with Elijah, God rarely communicates loudly; it’s in the whisper of calmness (1 Kings 19:9-18). I’m convinced that is when we hear best. Donnie’s life was renewed because he was given the opportunity to “Be still and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10).
Hundreds of Donnie’s (and Donna’s) are renewed every year in our urban retreats across the country. They serve as breakthrough times for women and men to take stock of her or his life, breaking the noise of the city to hear the whisper of God. Thanks for your partnership in making these happen.