We heard a quiet knock on the front door. It was snowing and the steep and treacherous driveway was nearly impassable. We had almost cancelled our Lifegroup gathering that night due to weather, but decided to meet just in case God had special plans for the few people who did brave the elements that evening. He did.
We heard another knock. Opening the door, we discovered an elderly man short in stature with his back bent over and leaning on a cane.
“My friend told me there was a Bible Study here tonight,” the gentlemen asked. “Is that right?”
“Come on in,” we offered while scratching our heads a bit. Who invited him? How did he find us? And why tonight of all nights to venture out?
A moment later we were eating pizza and talking about God’s grace with our Bibles open. That’s how we met Galen for the first time. He is sharp-witted and a has curious mind. Unfortunately, his health has been declining and its becoming more difficult for him to get around.
When I first saw the humble figure standing on our step with the snowflakes floating behind him, my mind immediately went to Hebrews 13:2: “Be sure to welcome strangers into your home. By doing this, some people have welcomed angels as guests, without even knowing it.” Angel or not, when Galen walked out the door two hours later he was no longer a stranger, but another beloved member of the MainStreet family.
Recently, the roles have been reversed. We are now showing up on Galen’s door step to share Holy Communion together and chat about the weather, his favorite TV show Jeopardy, and God’s faithfulness. Galen represents the heartbeat of MainStreet’s ministry – coming alongside quiet people who may get lost or forgotten in the hustle and bustle of larger churches. Maybe you’ve never met Galen. Maybe you’ve only seen him once or twice on a Sunday. But rest assured we have several people at MainStreet who are quietly being ministered to in quiet and unseen ways.
‘Lord, when did we see you a stranger and invite you in? When did we see you sick and go to visit you?’ “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ (Matt 25)
We love Galen and are so glad he had the guts to venture out in the snow and drive up our driveway that evening. That’s a fitting image for the life of faith, isn’t it? If we’re wiling to step out of our comfort zone and face the cold winds of uncertainty, and risk heading down (or up!) the narrow driveway of faith, we will often find an open door and the warm fire of loving fellowship awaiting us in the Father’s House on the hill.