I never write about personal experiences, I prefer politics and culture. It is rare that I have a personal experience that I feel necessary to share to a larger community with the hope that it makes someone’s day better or perhaps inspires them to share good news in a time that we have so little on the internet that can make use truly happy. I wanted to share a display of faith from the perspective of an observer.
Mike has always been the guy I could talk to. We had that great relationship where you could sling insults at one another until neither of you could breath because you were laughing so hard. Mike and I would talk about politics and religion, having grown up Catholic and him being a protestant we had many fun conversations about the different tenants of our faith.
My friend Mike is a devout man. He was in the Army just like I was, and spent his share of time in awful locations throughout the world. Mike found God as an adult, and was one of those people who is unafraid to speak his devotion to anyone, the type of guy that as a kid I would find embarrassing. Throughout my time knowing Mike, for the last couple of years, and especially in a recent event, I was ashamed of ever judging any man for being so confident in their faith, truly ashamed.
I watched Mike work tirelessly at his job, and slowly saw him gain from the benefit of his work. He finally bought a beautiful house that his wife always wanted, he landed a pristine job that meets everything he wants, and he had a chance encounter with someone that I guarantee will grow into a professional relationship that will help him in a future project. These are all great things, and they’re wonderful to see someone who is your friend have such great luck in life, but what knocked me back about the situation was that Mike had such a humility about him that he never seemed arrogant about his luck, don’t get me wrong, he didn’t seem upset, you just never realized, because he wasn’t someone to brag.
When he landed his new job earlier this week, one where he had to be evaluated against many very qualified candidates and if I remember correctly he called it a “long shot” I realized not only why Mike was so humble, but also, why Mike is an example that I feel needs to be shared with a greater audience. He was giddy about his new job, it finally got him in the location he wanted and gets him started down the road he wanted to go, I mean he was EXCITED! In his hilariously fun southern accent he said “man, I’ll tell you, I fasted and prayed about this, but ultimately I had to stop worrying and leave it in God’s hands”.
This was so profound a statement for me, because it’s the first time I had ever truly believed someone when they said this, and I will shamefully admit, it was actually the first time I think I ever truly believed God helped someone. That is not me suggesting that God doesn’t help people, that is me admitting that though I have told anyone who asked that I have faith, I had never realized how little I truly had and how humiliated I should be for my lack thereof.
A life time of attending church, graduating from a religious school, and having hours of conversations with others about God couldn’t hold a candle to seeing a man truly humbled in the presence of our Lord. To many this may seem like a ridiculous article to write, but I am so happy to have the opportunity to see something so simple, yet so profound. I almost feel spoiled for getting such a distinct lesson in faith, gratitude, and humility without ever having truly earned it. I had to tell someone about this, in hopes that others might see the subtlety of providence in their every day lives, and take a moment to meditate on this, I will always be grateful for the lessons I learned in faith from my friend Mike