Pocket Full of Change Ministries

This blog needed a name. Somehow, Divine Encounters While Living In a Hotel didn’t work. Besides, the Bible word for hotel is Inn. I asked Facebook friends for help. I narrowed 40 amazing suggestions to 7 and gave it back to Facebook for a vote. INNCounters, submitted by my best friend, Nancy Edwards, won by a landslide. Join the INNCounters God sends my way.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Do Not Disturb

By Cheryle M. Touchton
Director – Pocket Full of Change Ministries

Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. Ps 42:5-6 NIV

They were young and in love – that much was obvious. When they got into the hot tub, they cuddled up close and stared into each other’s eyes. Their message was clear – Do Not Disturb. Bob and I were also cuddled up and staring into each other’s eyes and I sighed when I felt the pesky tug of the Holy Spirit. I knew that for that night, not only was my relaxing hot tub visit disturbed, I was not going to take their “Do Not Disturb” hint.

Leeann and Robbie were 16 and 17 and in 11th and 12th grades, respectively. They were adorable clean cut, athletic, and studious young people. They’d been dating for three months, didn’t go to church, and neither knew where they were going when they died. Leeann was in town for her dad’s softball tournament. Robbie was along for romance in the hot tub. As I disturbed what my grandmother would have called their “sparking,” they were polite and listened to the Gospel. For Robbie, the message of his heart was clear – Do Not Disturb! Leeann sent another message – please disturb with the truth I have been seeking. Leeann was under conviction but struggling because her boyfriend had no interest. I silently rebuked Satan’s use of peer pressure.

While I was praying about what to say next, two of their friends ran up and suggested swimming in the pool. The four young people left the hot tub but as they left, Leeann looked at me and mentioned she was coming back later to warm up. I was already well past my hot tub limit and starting to wilt, but I stayed. I wondered about fainting and how Bob would get me out of the hot tub. When Robbie and Leeann returned, I breathed a sigh of relief that we wouldn’t be disturbing the entire hotel by calling 911 to revive me.

God bless Bob. He always knows just what to do to support my call. He began an intellectual religious discussion with Robbie, which Robbie was thrilled with. I took advantage of the distraction, hoisted myself up backwards up out of the hot tub, went to the other side of Leeann, and sat down on the bumpy pool tile.

“Leeann,” I whispered. “I knew you were interested in what I was saying earlier.” She shyly nodded.

“You already believe in Jesus but never met him personally. You seem worried about eternity and like you want to know Jesus.” Again, she nodded.

“Would you let me lead you in a prayer asking Jesus to be your Savior?”

“Yes,” she whispered, shyly glancing downward as her face turned even redder then it already was from the heat.

About that time, Robbie noticed us. “Robbie,” I explained. “Leeann learned about Jesus as a child. Now, she wants to pray to meet Jesus. I’d love it if you prayed with us but I suspect you are not ready yet. It is your choice.”

“Not now,” he said. “I’m good.”

“I understand,” I said. Quietly and reverently, Leeann prayed to receive Jesus. When she looked up, her radiant face met my eyes for the first time. Robbie had quietly listened to every word without a trace of the smug cynicism that had lined his face earlier. After giving Leeann suggestions about what to do next, Bob and I stood up to leave them to their “sparking.”

As Bob got out, he said, “Robbie, you will remember what happened here. The Holy Spirit will continue to speak to you. Like me, eventually, you are going to want to do the same thing.” Robbie nodded and we knew that he had taken down the “Do Not Disturb” sign from his heart.

“I knew the Holy Spirit was working,” Bob said as we walked to the room. “You managed to get out of the hot tub without using the stairs. You sat on the ground next to Leeann and when you finished, you stood back up without any trouble.”

“Yes,” I sighed. “At my age, I can still do all of those things. I just don’t do them in public because it is not a pretty sight. The fact that I did it in front of everyone while wearing a bathing suit is testimony to the power of the Holy Spirit.” When Bob and I arrived at the room, we put the “Do Not Disturb” sign on our door.

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