In a story typifying the life of an everyday mystic, I was sitting in my parked car, watching people from all walks of life going in and out of CVS while my husband was inside at the Minute Clinic getting tested for strep throat. After a half-hour of waiting I closed my eyes. Something about watching the people coming and going prompted me to ask God to help those in need. I told Him (as if He didn’t know) that sometimes it’s really hard down here for those without money; and then I dropped into a deep meditation. A loud noise jolted my attention back to the parking lot. All the cars that had been coming and going had disappeared. The parking lot was empty except for a young man, wearing a leather vest, arms covered in tattoos, walking toward my open car window.
He asked if I could give him some money, followed by a story about running out of gas. I got out of my car to get my handbag, which was in the back seat. As I opened the back door, my handbag toppled out splaying its contents onto the pavement. I bent down to pick up everything and gave him money, naively asking if it was enough. He explained that he needed to buy a gas can too; so I gave him more money. All the while being keenly aware of the possibility that I was being duped, but also aware of the prayer I’d just said.
The young man left and I laughed to myself…I never know how God’s “will be done.” I easily could have judged this person and turned him away, perhaps interfering with God’s will, or perhaps turning away God himself. I realize I didn’t solve the nation’s poverty problems that day, but maybe God was showing up through this young man and through me to illustrate how His will is done through each of us. I had a choice—to do His will or not. To do it I had to put aside all my judgments and pre-conceived notions and not assume that God was going to give this man gas and a gas can so that I could just go back to sunning myself and praying. We have the ability to create heaven on earth by allowing God’s will to flow through us. We truly are the ones we have been waiting for.