By Claudia Koenig
Two men were working on gathering leaves in the yard. It was very cold and windy.
After they were done, we noticed that the job was not complete. I called the man in charge, and he said that the man who had hired him was not paying him very much. He shared that the man who had helped him charged him $100.00, and that was all that he himself was going to get paid for such a large property. And it was a very big one! He continued, “I live two hours away, but I will return and do this just for you.” That caught my attention, because I could hear his sincerity.
He came and labored through the early evening in the cold and windy night! He labored and labored with no break! We felt so bad. But we could not stop him. His heart was in his labor.
After he was done, we asked him to come to the door. I asked him to come in. He told my husband and me that his shoes were too muddy, so he preferred to stay outside. We noticed that he wore a very light jacket and pants and no gloves or hat. His ears and face were red, but he was smiling.
When we looked at the work he had done, it was superb, exceeding our expectations. Even though he had car trouble, he kept his word and came to finish the job. But we never expected to see that there would not be a leaf in sight! His work ethics were certainly not the norm of today.
We didn’t know what to say. We paid him an additional amount to what the man who hired him was going to pay him. But in my heart before the Lord, I knew he had labored so hard in hope of something.
As we talked, he seemed to want to say something, but he couldn’t bring himself to say it. He left with a smile on his face. Through the evening, my heart was still on his labor, the cold, and his smile.
The next day, I was talking to a girlfriend of mine on the phone. I shared with her about this man’s labor. She said, “I want to bless that man. Can you get a hold of him? I want to give him some more money for his labor. Tell him that God wants to bless him and that his work ethics are being rewarded. Without knowing it, he labored by faith hoping to be rewarded. But please do not tell him that it is from me. I do not want him to know that.” She talked with her husband, and they decided to give him double what he would have made.
I called the man. I asked him if he could come by, because we wanted to help him a little. He humbly replied, “No, I don’t want you to do this.”
I asked him, “How far away are you now?” He said that he was in the next town. This area was not far from where we were. This was a great help! So, I asked him again to please come by. He said that he would arrive in about an hour.
When he came to our door, my husband and I asked him to come in. He was wearing a little bit thicker coat, but his pants were very lightweight, he wore no gloves, and his shoes were worn-out house shoes.
He stepped inside. I explained that what he was about to receive was not from us.
I shared with him that God saw his heart as he labored, that God was watching him as he worked, and that God was pleased with his servant’s heart. I said, “God knows your heart. He does not turn away from it.” I then asked him if he knew Jesus as his Savior.
He said, “I don’t go to church.”
I replied, “God is not about a church. He is about a personal relationship with you. I am asking about your relationship with God and His Son.” I said, “God cares about your heart.” I took the opportunity and added, “We are going to pray with you to know Jesus and be in heaven with Him, when that time comes for you.”
In humility he looked at me and with a soft voice said, “I would like that.”
I said, “Okay, let’s pray.” He closed his eyes and bowed his head. I prayed with him, and he received Jesus as his Savior, confessed his sins, and gave his life to Him.
Immediately afterward, he placed his hand on his heart and said, “This feels So Good! This feels So Good!” I cried a little. My husband stood smiling.
I asked him if had a Bible. He said that somewhere he had a very small New Testament. I told him where and how to start reading. He listened very carefully.
My girlfriend had wired the money, and we had the cash to give to him right away. I handed him the gift that was from her and said, “Please do not accept this from us. Please receive this from the One who knows your heart and saw you labor before Him—Jesus! He wants to reward and bless you.”
He gently received the gift and bowed his head in humility. He, my husband, and I stood in JOY! It is almost Christmas! What more could one give Jesus as we celebrate Him, but a soul! Merry Christmas, Jesus!
“Abba, You are full of mercy and compassion!”
“Messiah, I have not gone out much, but You keep bringing the souls to where I am. How You pursue them because of Your love!”
“Holy Spirit, thank You for placing it in my heart to share this man and his labor with another of Christ’s children and for moving on her heart to give to God’s work in a soul.”
But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, long suffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth. - Psalm 86:15
He hath made his wonderful works to be remembered: the Lord is gracious and full of compassion. - Psalm 111:4
But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. - Matthew 9:13
Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. - Matthew 5:7
But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, - Ephesians 2:4
For thou shalt eat the labour of thine hands: happy shalt thou be, and it shall be well with thee. - Psalm 128:2
All scripture is KJV.