“I don’t know any Christian that I can trust to ask these questions.”
I was saddened when hearing this on a Father’s Day outreach.
Outreach has always been a challenge for me, and I’m definitely not the type of person that enjoys starting conversation with strangers.
Walking around the lake at City Park, I didn’t know where to start this conversation, in a moment, I saw a mom sitting on a picnic table with two children, I thought that might be a good place to start, but with some hesitation, I didn’t go up right away, but with peers encouragement, I decided to give it a try.
I walked up to them and briefly introduced me and my partner Billy, also asked them if they would be willing to answer a few questions on the Father’s Day survey.
“Yes, sure”. This positive answer gave me a immediate confidence to keep the conversation going.
The survey went on quite well for the first few minutes, in a moment, I realized that I have not included the two kids in the conversation, so I invited them to jump in the conversation.
At the very moment, the 8-year-old boy said something and was immediately stopped by his mother. And the mom started sobering, I have sensed that they are probably going through a hard time and this might not be a comfortable topic for them.
I did not know what to do, I would want to hear their story but did not know what would be a good question to guide them, I did not know if it would at all be appropriate to ask them to share their story..
Billy stepped in and kept the conversation going, although there are few times I was very confused what the mom was saying, but I felt in that very moment, the best thing I could do is listen instead of interrupting. As the conversation continues, the mom was more willing to share her past experience with church and some other aspects.
My heart tugged when hearing that she did not have a good experience with church and did not know anyone that she would trust to ask the many questions she have.
I wished there would be more time to chat with her, I wished I could have asked other questions to know her experience before step in the Father’s Day survey questions….
I assumed that Father’s Day would be a perfect topic to start conversation with, yet, I did not know that there are many who are going through hard times and even Father’s Day survey could be a hard topic to talk about.
I’m grateful that God has brought her into my life, I’m thankful that God has put me in a situation where I did not know what to do, but to listen and learn how to get conversation going when having an unexpected answer.