Heaven at a Cafe

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There is an eating place close to our home that opens early and closes at 2:30 in the afternoon. Good food, and an even greater atmosphere: I always experience the Kingdom of Heaven there. While I typically go there to eat, read, and sometimes write, my Kingdom of Heaven experiences come in the form of one person—Kim. A young, beautiful woman with a bright disposition, I recognize her for her special character. Now, surely hospitality professionals are supposed to be cheery, but she is way beyond that. Everything about her is engaging! Over the years, I have come to recognize radiant people—the radiance spurring from the soul of a believer in Christ. Often it is the outward expression of an inward work going on.

I discovered by listening once—eavesdropping actually—that she was engaged to be married and was simply giddy about the entire event to come. I paid my bill, then beckoned her over to my table. I told her I wanted to be part of her upcoming wedding celebration. I gave her an extra wad of cash and said, “Take this. Use it to buy something memorable for your home as a couple.” With tears in her eyes, she hugged me and, you guessed it, a bubble of the Kingdom of Heaven expanded to fill the entire area. I told her about my perception of her radiance and why. She continued to weep, very glad she didn’t use mascara that day—not that she ever needed it anyway.

A few weeks went by, and now returned from her honeymoon, I met with the glowing new bride at the eating place. During a lull in customer traffic, she came and sat down. She and her husband chose to buy a dishwasher with the wad of cash. I had to laugh out loud—that’s romance for you! As we continued talking, she offered that she and her husband were Young Life leaders. I knew it! Her radiance was a reflection of her life and spirit of service to the King. Her servant heart extended, first to her very blessed husband, then to her young life charges, and ultimately to the customers at the eating place.

I gave her a copy of my book, Life After Heaven. I asked her to read it and wanted to dialog with her about her reactions. I also wanted to visit with her Young Life group about the Kingdom of Heaven. She was more than happy to have me meet with her Young Life kids.

All of that from a sense of radiance, born of a soul surrendering to Christ inside! This is an example of the spiritual facet of the Kingdom of Heaven. I still see this young woman, living and working in an attitude of service to others. Servant-hearted people are part of living within bubbles of the Kingdom of Heaven.

How can you live your life better as a servant to your King, and those around you?


  • Hi Steven, I think about you often and how meaningful your blogs are to further the Kingdom of Heaven here on earth. As I mentioned to you when we met at church, I believe you are a modern day disciple of Jesus. Just a quick question. Have you seen the movie or read the book “The Shack”, and if so, what did you think about it? It is one of my favorite movies of all time.

    • Thank you Paul. I am just a conduit of the Kingdom, just as we all can be! I have seen “The Shack” and talked with several people about it. More than anything, I hear that it helps people get a better understanding of the Father’s love for ALL His children, no matter what! It opens people’s eyes to their own judgments and makes them rethink them, which I think is always helpful. The Triune God is incredibly personable, (He created us with free-will to have a relationship with us after all) so as far as what Mack experienced, I do not think it is out of the realm of possibility. If we start putting God in a box, we will never see His true or full power in our lives!

  • Thank you for sharing your experiences here. They are always thought provoking, and I truly enjoy reading them.

    God Bless you and all that you do.



  • Dear Steve selfishnes, fear, and I’m not sure what else lead me to a place of ill health and loneliness. I feel empty and abandoned. Gave my life to the Lord along time ago. God uses me sometimes but otherwise I feel usless and empty. Would you please pray for me. I so want that first love back and to be close to the Father and Jesus. Thanks in advance.

    • Thank you, Gary, for sharing part of your story! God will always honor your sincere search for Him. Let me assure you that the fact God placed you on this earth means He is CONSTANTLY using you! I think the church has often given us the impression that if we are not performing miracles then we are not being “used” by God. This is not true! God uses us all the time if we let Him. When we live in anticipation of His will, anything we do can serve the Kingdom. From a smile to a helping hand, when we live with the character of Christ, we are already being used that way God intends. We may never see the fruits of the seeds we plant, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t tend to the garden! Keep the faith, Gary. God has never broken His promises, and He promised to be with you!

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