Fast food and kingdom encounters!
Here's a little secret: God loves fast food restaurants. Why? Because people go to fast food restaurants. Where people are, the Holy Spirit is active and ready for you to partner with him so that you might put on display the love of the Father. Wherever you are and people are, the activity of the Kingdom is always at hand. Our Job is simply to look, listen, and respond.
Today, I had an amazing lunch at Del Rancho (a fast food drive in restaurant in OKC) with some good friends, Matt Burrell, Brock Bingaman, and John Bingaman. I thought lunch was going to last maybe an hour and a half, but it lasted 4 and a half hours. As we shared about life kingdom stories and prayed for one another, the Holy Spirit came! It was amazing! It was such an honor to finally meet with John Bingaman, a man whom God has greatly used in OKC.
After our lunch, Matt wanted to order a drink to go, and the Holy Spirit gave me a word of knowledge about a condition the carhop lady had. Matt and I prayed for her and proclaimed the love of Jesus for her. Afterward, Matt and I were walking to our cars to leave when we saw a man sitting in his truck with his son. As we walked by, I felt an impression about this man having chest pains, so Matt and I approached him. I said, “Sir, have you been having chest pain?’
He was a bit taken back by our question so, we told him we are followers of Jesus and he speaks to us about issues in people's bodies. We asked if it would be OK if we prayed for him. He said yes with a surprised look. (I bet he wasn't expecting to taste and see that the Lord is good at Del Rancho!)
He said he had off and on chest pain for 3 years related to acid reflux issues. He let us pray for him. He wasn't in pain at the moment, but we prayed for the issue and the Holy Spirit gave us words for his son. They were so grateful and thanked us.
On the way home, Jeanine called me and asked if I would pick up some fast food for her and the kiddos—the kids wanted Sonic and Jeanine wanted Arby's. First stop was Sonic. As the carhop lady brought out my order for the kids, I took a risk and thought I would practice the presence putting Jesus on display. I asked her if she had a condition in her neck and shoulder. She looked at me like why are you asking me this and said no and asked why.
I said, “Well, sometimes I get pictures and impressions for people. I know that sounds weird.” She gave me one of those odd looks. It felt awkward. I had stepped out and missed it, but as Wimber always said, faith is spelled R-I-S-K. In the moment of tension and missing it, I felt as though there was something wrong with her knee. Oh no! I had just missed it. I could feel the butterflies in my stomach, but I went for it one more time.
“Do you have a problem in your knee?” She looked at me surprised, then I said, “It’s your right knee.” She said yes. I asked her, “Would you like me to do something about that pain?” I know that might sound arrogant, but it wasn't. I was simply stepping into the commissioning of Jesus in Matthew 10, “as you go, heal the sick.”
Well, I was on the go, getting food for the kids, and she was in pain.
I asked her where her pain was on a scale from 1 to 10. She said, “It’s a 2 or 3. It’s not so bad at the moment, but most of the time it’s about a 7 or 8 pain level.” She told me that she was in the army and had to quit due to her knee condition. She told me the name of the condition and said her knee would eventually completely give out. I asked her, even though the pain wasn't so bad at the moment, would
she be able to tell if the pain left and the condition was healed? “Oh yeah,” she said.
“Great! Can I see your hand?” She was a bit hesitant but reached out toward my hand. As I gently took ahold of her hand and looked her in the eyes, I said, “Jesus is pursuing you with his love. Pain, go.”
Then I asked her to move her knee. As she did, she gasped and said, “There is no more pain!”
I said, “This is Jesus demonstrating his love towards you and showing you that you are not forgotten.”
“You are going to make me cry,” she said as she was fighting back the tears.
I looked at her again and said, “Jesus really does love you.”
Again she said, “You’re going to make me cry.” She was moving her knee, and there was no pain.
She thanked me, and I told her, “Hey, enjoy your day and your new knee.” She smiled so big. It was priceless!
Off to Arby's! On the way I called Matt Burrell and was talking with him as I got to Arby's. I told Matt to hold on while I ordered, and I felt like I had a word for the drive-thru attendant, whose name was James, about a pulled hamstring. As I picked up the order I said, “Hey listen, are you having a problem with your hamstringing?” He looked at me with a bewildered look and said no. Again, an awkward moment. I said, “Well, do you have any pain?”
He said, “No, why are you asking?”
“Well, I get pictures and impressions for people about conditions in their bodies and things going on in their lives.” I think this was messing with his head and I could tell he felt as much awkwardness as I felt. (Matt was still on the phone with me.)
James asked, “Are you looking for someone?”
I said, “Yes, anyone who happens to be in pain. Do you want to help me find that person?”
Just then the lady who takes the orders overheard the conversation and said, “I have pain!” James turned to her with a look like, really?
I asked her where the pain was, and she said, “Right in the middle of my stomach. It hurts really bad.”
“OK, put your hand on your stomach.” She did so, and I said, “Thank you, Jesus, that you love her and that you are pursuing her with love. Pain, go. And may she know the love you have for her.” Then I said, “You’re going to start feeling the presence of the Lord come on your stomach.”
She just smiled and said, “Thank you.”
I said, “No, check it out!”
So she reluctantly pushed her hand into her stomach, bent forward, and yelled, “Oh my gosh! The pain is gone!” She ran away screaming with freaked-out excitement. James just looked at me and her like, what is going on. She comes
back to the window with a big smile and a thumbs up, eyes big, and shaking her head like what just happened.
I looked her right in the eye and said, “This is the love of Jesus. He just came near to you. He is real and is pursuing you.” She just smiled and nodded her head and said thank you.
Remember the kingdom of God is at hand wherever people are, like fast food restaurants. You will never escape the awkward vulnerability of risk. Just go for it, and practice His presence wherever you go.