Thank you Ahwatukee for giving me a million-dollar idea.
In my first Spiritual Side column I told you I was struggling to figure out what to do for people asking for help on freeway off-ramps. I tried the WWJD? approach (What Would Jesus Do?) and still wasn't getting any answers. So I asked for your advice and you graciously responded.
From reading your email replies I realized that I was asking the wrong question. First of all, I received so many different responses that it tells me there is no one right answer.
One person said they keep it short and sweet; the person gets a bottle of water and a silent prayer. Another said they actually make up a Ziploc baggie full of granola, sunscreen and a couple phone numbers to shelters in the area. That's awesome!
A lady named Cathy said she doesn't give money because she thinks they would probably use it for cigarettes or alcohol.
I liked the one from a guy named Jerry who said he normally doesn't do anything for them. But one time he saw a guy standing there with a broken front wheel on his bike.
It reminded him of when he was a kid and how helpless he felt when that happened to him far from home. So he picked up the guy, took him to a bike shop and paid to get his tire fixed. Nice going, Jerry!
The second thing that occurred to me is that I wouldn't have received all these great ideas if I hadn't asked for your input.
I've got a pretty thick skull but it finally hit me that WWJD? isn't the right question to be asking.
First, I have no idea what Jesus would do. He regularly blew people away with his methods of ministry (like smearing mud on one guy's eyes and letting another sick friend go ahead and die - only to raise him up several days later).
And second, just trying to figure out what Jesus would do doesn't involve him in the process. The Bible says, "If anyone lacks wisdom let him ask and it will be given to him."
So I took my WWJD? bracelet, flipped it inside out, and wrote JWSID? on it. Now, when I pull up next to a person standing on a freeway exit I will ask "Jesus, what should I do?" and proceed from there.
So that's my new Christian bracelet and I figure I'll sell at least a million of them. Thanks, again, for the idea!
• Brad Butler is a PGA golf pro who attends Mountain Park Community Church in Ahwatukee Foothills. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.