This is why I want to work with nonprofits.
The fan is buzzing, and the TV is playing as Caritas clients wait to hear their number called. Just another ordinary day at the food pantry. After meeting with Buddy, I went upstairs to my office, far away from the action.
One of my assignments for next week is to make a broadcast video for Caritas. So I ran around for a few hours taking B-roll footage, trying my best to avoid actually having to talk to people for fear of being turned down. (NOTE: Most people who are seeking emergency assistance dislike interviews. When they see my camera, they scatter as fast as possible.)
As I looked at the people in the waiting room, I tried to find someone to interview. Sitting alone was a woman who looked friendly enough. Her name was Brenda and she said she would love for me to interview her. I waited for her number to be called and for her to get her food.
We walked outside and I asked her some generic questions. Trying to get through the interview as fast as possible, I sped through the questions. Then, it happened.
Ironically, right when my nerves called and I thought the interview was over, was the moment the interview began.
We starting talking about life and how she was doing. No longer was she saying generic things like, “Yes, I come to Caritas to get food. Yes, Caritas is good for our community.”
Brenda began telling me about her family, her down-syndrome baby, and the stressors in life. And then something began to tug at my heart.
I heard the Spirit go, “Rachel, you should pray for her.”
The human in me said, “Are you kidding? That’s crazy. She’ll think I’m crazy.”
But God wouldn’t let me go. He kept prying at my heart, until I asked her if I could pray for her.
I saw a tear start to form in her eye as she said, “Of course! I love when people pray for me.”
As we sat there praying, right outside of the waiting room, my heart filled with joy at God’s faithfulness. I felt the Spirit moving so strongly.
Today, I was reminded that people everywhere are hurting. They are seeking someone to just listen to them and care. It’s worth it to step out in faith and to take a moment to pray with someone. Not only will it bless them, it will bless you.
True, sometimes it’s hard to work in a food pantry. It’s difficult to go to work knowing you are going to see people who are hurting deeply. But, it’s moments like these that make me never want to leave Caritas. I never know who God is going to bring into my life to change it forever.
With an open heart, I will approach the next months at Caritas with a willingness to see what God has in store.