Our neighbor Bible study is not in a “typical” neighborhood like my family has lived in while raising our three children in three different states. Now, sort of retired 😊, we have moved back to where I grew up and that is the greater Denver area, Littleton, Colorado. But instead of a neighborhood as we knew it, we are loving the demographic diversity of a new development with condos, townhouses, apartments and a variety of single-family homes as well.
When we first moved to this State, the Lord made it clear it was time to step out and start a Bible study group in the apartment complex we initially lived in for more than 2 years. There it was easy to let other women know of this new study because I could put fliers on doors of other apartments in this gated complex and also meet women as they were walking their dogs or at the pool. When we moved here – to hopefully our permanent small but tall home – we still put fliers on some doors, but the most successful outreach was by word of mouth. Over time we had tried posting signs in the common area (which were taken down), created fliers to hand out and of course, a personal invitation was always good. Yet, we were looking for a new and creative way to reach the women who are constantly moving into our community.
At one of our last meetings in 2022, one woman suggested we try Starbucks for the January start of our winter session! In this new complex, there are only two retail establishments so far, and one is Starbucks. Many singles, couples and families walk there to get their favorite refreshment. So, this January I created a flier on some random Christmas/winter paper I had left over from a prior year’s annual Christmas letter. I understood that they had a community Bulletin Board to post it on, so I prayed and walked in on one chilly evening.
As I walked into the nearly empty but inviting Starbucks, I looked for the most-likely crowded community bulletin board ready to post my winter flier with my colorful push-pins. But, to my surprise, I could not find one. I asked the manager if she had one and she pointed to an all-black, magnet-type board that looked like a piece of art. At the top was a chalk drawing of a pine branch, lightly laden with snow. It was as if someone had seen my winter paper and had drawn a complementary border for my flier. There were no other fliers on the entire board!!
Since I did not bring magnets, the manager kindly offered me the only magnet she had. As I stood back and looked at the striking and attractive board, I realized it was perfectly placed above the ONLY milk, sugar and condiment counter. Most everyone who bought a hot drink at this Starbucks would likely see our flier, the only flier on this blackboard. The Lord cares and prepares for every detail as we follow His call.
As I left, tears filled my eyes, and I prayed for all the women who would see this invitation and He would lead those to our little study who He had selected to join us. That week I heard from three women!
NORA’S STORY – She woke up at 3:30 a.m. one morning and couldn’t wait for her local Starbucks to open at 5 a.m. But for some reason, this time she did not choose to go through the Drive-thru. She walked in before sunrise and when stopping at the condiment counter, knew this flier was put there for her. She was lonely, questioning where or if she was to move, wanted to find a community of women believers and get back into reading the Bible again.
ERIN’S STORY – She was convinced one of her tires must have a nail in it and since she was new to the area, she found a local mechanic to check it out. She Googled the closest coffee shop to hang out in until her tire was fixed. When she saw the flier, she knew it was there for her. Engaged and looking for a new job, she was a believer who wanted to connect with other women believers and be more accountable in studying the Bible. When she went to pick up her car, she did NOT have a flat! She was in awe of what the Lord did just to draw her to our study.
AMY’S STORY – As a pastor’s wife, she and her husband were waiting to hear His clear direction regarding their next steps after leaving their church months ago. They had sold most everything and moved 50 miles from their old church to be closer to their young adult sons and were living in the basement of a friend. Every day they would choose a different coffee shop to read, pray, meditate and discuss what they both were hearing from the Lord. One day that same week, she too saw the flier that was written just for her.
The next week, our first meeting of our NBS2GO, Littleton Village Bible Study winter session, each woman shared their amazing Starbucks story! We continually are amazed at God’s provision, guidance, compassion and love for each one of us individually.
I wanted to take a photo of the Starbucks Black Board but one week later, it was gone! It was just a simple, black, Community Bulletin board with no art and just some coffee comments scribbled in chalk. Also, as we thought about these three new women, it was clear the Lord wanted us to expand our borders. None of the three new women were from our little neighborhood. They have brought to us, and we have shared together, God’s insight, richness, healing, laughter, gentleness and wisdom to our group because we tried something new – Starbucks!
NBS2GO would like to thank Sherri for this faith-inspiring story. Isn’t it exciting that our God leads us to places we would not have thought of? Where might He be leading you? Do you have a story you would like to share with us? We would love to hear from you. firstname.lastname@example.org