The strangest thing happened yesterday . I’m still reeling from it. Did I imagine it? No, I feel different, I look different. Oh wow, this is amazing.
I went to work as usual. I hoped I’d get customers quickly so I could buy food and go home. There was nothing in the cupboards. I should probably plan better but my head is all over the place and it’s hard to get into a routine. I say ‘is’. I think all that is going to change now….
Business was slow. I stood patiently in the hot sun on my usual corner, I like this spot because there’s an olive tree that provides a bit of shade. And I eat the olives when they’re ripe, probably shouldn’t, but there we are.
Late afternoon I saw this group of men heading towards me. I patted my hair tidy and struck an alluring pose.
They looked an odd bunch to be friends: some were clearly manual labourers judging from their muscles, one had the despicable air of a tax collector and I recognised one as a terrorist. But their leader, he was something else altogether. One look at him and I knew he’d never take part in my kind of business.
I pulled my robe tighter around me and turned away. I wished the ground would open up and cover me. I felt so ashamed and dirty. I was worthless, less than nothing. I wished I’d never been born. My life was pointless: how many times have I been used and not paid, or abused? Because the men I deal with think they can do what they like and get away with it.
But he came closer until he was standing right in front of me.
‘What do you want me to do for you?’
The words were so gentle and gave me the tiniest bit of hope. Such a simple question, yet coming from him it broke down the barriers I’d erected.
I longed for peace more than anything. To be able to sleep at night like a baby. For relief from these terrible, jagged, emotional wounds that cracked and bled at the slightest provocation.
‘Peace,’ I whispered.
‘I give you My peace. Don’t be troubled or afraid. I am giving you life. This is why I came: to bind up your broken heart and heal your wounds.’
At once I felt different, lighter, as if a very heavy load had been lifted. I raised my head and smiled at him. He beamed back. ‘I’m Jesus. What’s your name?’
He squeezed my hand.
What a Man! He didn’t want anything from me, but gave hope, and peace, and life. Wow. I love this Man.
And guess what, last night I slept like a baby.