Years ago there was an older woman who sat beside me occasionally in choir named Rochelle. I called her Mrs. Rochelle as we southerners tend to do in respect for anyone more than a couple of years older than we are. I didn’t know her well because we were supposed to practice and not talk too much during choir, but I could tell she was a wise woman who loved the Lord deeply. Our choir was scheduled to sing at a church across town and Mrs. Rochelle needed a ride, so I volunteered to pick her up. Let me tell you, that 20 minute ride became a memorable lesson for me.
I picked Mrs. Rochelle up at the appointed time and we fell into an uplifting conversation almost immediately. Her verbal autobiography was filled with God moments, scriptures, and blessings. She was indeed a mighty woman of God. The most memorable story she shared was about her trip to Walmart the day before.
She had planned to go a few days before. That morning she made out her list and was all dressed and ready to walk out the door when she sensed the Lord telling her not to go that day. So she didn’t. Mrs. Rochelle made sure to point out to me that she listens to the Lord before she does anything. I was pretty impressed. I mean, I prayed and asked God about things too, but it was big things like having another baby or should we go in debt for a new car. But whether to go to Walmart? Nope, I had never even considered praying about that.
As it turned out, Mrs. Rochelle did not make that Walmart run for about 3 days, and then, according to her, the Lord said, “Ok, you can go today,” on that Saturday before our choir adventure. As she was relating the story to me she said, “And you know what? I got to Walmart and everything on my list was on sale that day! And there was another special item I had been wanting to buy that was available, and I could buy it and stay on budget because of the money I saved!” And she glowed with the joy and enthusiasm of the Lord as she told me this story.
That day is still profound in my memory. Do I always pray about whether I should go to Walmart? Sadly, no. But I have learned to seek God in many more of the small things of life. And I have also experienced the Lord surprising me when I take time to seek Him in everyday things. The power of prayer can never be over-estimated, and learning to take ALL things to Him is a lesson we all need to learn.
So I encourage you to check in with God today. See if He wants you to go where you’re headed. Ask if He wants you to say what you plan to say. Pray for His guidance before you jump in and accept or decline a request for teaching or ministry, or quit a job or buy a car. Submit every choice to the leading of the Holy Spirit. “In all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight,” Proverbs 3:6 NIV.