What a 3am Grocery Store Run Taught Me About Relationships

I woke up unusually early this morning; around 2:30am. I was tired of wrestling with the thoughts in my head, so I jumped out of bed to wrestle them on paper. But first, I went to my TRUSTY early morning companion; the Cuisinart.

Coffee, check. Sugar, check (don’t judge me). Milk, empty.

To prove how much I dislike black coffee, I braved the bitterly cold temps to run to the grocery store.  As I was checking out, a young girl named Zanna helped me and noticed I was not dressed for the weather.

“You’re a little cold aren’t you?” as if flip-flops and shorts weren’t compatible with what – in Wilmington, NC – was epically cold.

“You’d think I would have checked the weather, huh?” I admitted.

“Do you always work the night shift?” I questioned.

“No, they called me at 7 last night and said the other person was sick, so I came in at 10,” she answered as she fumbled with a bag.

“Well I hope they paid you well!” An effort to lighten her spirits about the shift.

“Yeah…”  she snickered. I caught what she was implying.

“Well regardless, I’m glad you’re here this morning. I hope you have a great day, after you nap of course.”

She looked at me slightly puzzled, but her eyes held a slight twinkle about them as if no one had told her to have a great day in a LONG time.

As I walked out into the frigid morning air, I thought about my word; TRUST.

Zanna didn’t quite trust me yet, certainly not deeply, but we made headway in a short, simple exchange. Why? Because TRUST is about relationships.

via www.corephp.com

via www.atbreak.com – Me to We

Where Trust Begins

As I continue to pour into my word, I recognize that TRUST doesn’t just occur. Our natural inclination is to be hesitant, put our guard up, and even question. This stems from our desire for self-preservation as I often lean toward not trusting because of my past; feeling the need to protect myself from pain.

We keep our heads down, avoid people, and keep conversations simple because we’re protective; maybe even fearful of what they may hold. That’s not TRUSTING at all.

However, when we defined trust, we saw that is was “confident expectation; hope.

If we were hopeful about our conversations and about our relationships, what would that look like?

Would we engage more or less?

More of course! Why?

Because TRUST happens within the context of relationships.

It’s hard to TRUST something you’re not in a relationship with and you’ll never know until you engage that relationship with confident expectation and hope.

The GREAT Relationship

For me, TRUST is about one relationship that especially needs engaging, one relationship where TRUST is of dire importance. My relationship with my Creator. When God asks us to TRUST,  it’s not a command, it’s an invitation.

When He called His disciples, He said, “Come, follow Me!” 

Remember the story of the rich young ruler?

In three gospel accounts, the man came to Jesus asking him what he needed to do to receive eternal life.

Good teacher, what shall I do?

Jesus knew the condition of this man’s heart and Jesus knew he TRUSTED more in his money than anything else. Interestingly, Jesus gave him the same command as the disciples:

Sell your possessions and come, follow Me.

This story isn’t about the money, it’s an invitation for the rich young ruler to TRUST. Jesus, as God, knew this man would never fully TRUST Him as long as his TRUST was in something else. Just as Jesus called the disciples, so did He call this man. However, the ruler’s definition of richness was too secured in the world’s pursuit, so he refused.

As we redefine the riches we are to pursue, it begins with an invitation to TRUST. Because TRUST is and invitation for a relationship.


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3 Responses to What a 3am Grocery Store Run Taught Me About Relationships

  1. Joe Lalonde January 9, 2014 at 10:52 pm #

    Awesome story Matt. It’s funny how there are times like this where we’re in a specific place at a specific time and meet a specific person. I hope your interaction with Zanna affected her life.

    • Matt Ham January 10, 2014 at 5:38 am #

      Joe – the key part to me is being in tune to those relationships and ready to respond when the opportunity presents itself. Hope your year is starting off great!


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